Drifting at Sea on a Ship of Fools
As the imperial media commemorate the 20th anniversary of the attacks on the World Trade Center (an event akin to what the neoconservative crowd once longed for as a “new Pearl Harbor”), it bears noting that there exists, more than ever in recent memory, a stark contrast between a vision shared by States still clinging to the post-war international system embodied in the UN Charter and those (mostly partisans of a post-national ethos) who would attempt to convince public opinion that said Charter has from now on been replaced by what Anthony J. BLINKEN has referred as the “rule-based international order”.
The “Post-National” faction appears to have completely done away with the structuring virtue of the Charter in order to replace it with vague notions of “international justice”, “gender parity” while more generally paying heed to such chimera as “inclusiveness” and “diversity”. In doing so, these post-National “ersatz societies” have seemingly disemboweled the corpus of long-standing, time-enduring and crisis-tested norms of respect for national sovereignty, peaceful dispute resolutions, fact-based analysis and more generally the search for consensus.
As it were, the very semantics of the ancient art of diplomacy have undergone a profound transformation whereupon emotional (some might say hysterical) rhetoric has come to characterize the entire spectrum of discussions on such issue as the fight against terrorism.
Western pundits have accused States advocating for the respect of national sovereignty of engaging in “autocratic revisionism”. To wit, the loaded term “revisionist power” carries with it ominous undertones for it alludes to the denial of some of the most villainous chapters of the 20th Century.
In the light of such rhetoric, it becomes obvious that the search for commonality and reasonable discourse in diplomatic circles can quickly devolve into acrimonious finger-pointing and unneeded obstruction over the tritest issues which ALL members of the international community of nations have to grapple with.
This brings us to the dilemma over the issue of the normative advancement of international, some would say “universal” justice.
The legacy of Nuremberg and the philosophy of Human rights
At the close of the Second World War, the victorious Allies sought to for the first time in History to hold responsible the senior leadership of a defeated State, National-socialist Germany, by holding a series of trials in the city of Nuremberg.
In so doing, the Allies dramatically altered the prevailing corpus by adopting such notions as command responsibility, war crimes and crimes against humanity. Most notably, the Nuremberg tribunals introduced the concept of “crimes against peace”, thus paving the way for a seemingly irreconcilable dilemma between the normative “search for peace” and the means required to achieve it. In his opening statement to the Tribunal in November 1945, Justice Robert Jackson notably stated: “We must never forget that the record on which we judge these defendants today is the record on which history will judge us tomorrow. To pass these defendants a poisoned chalice is to put it to our own lips as well…”
Moreover, Jackson unambiguously pointed out that the treatment may indeed reveal itself to be worse than the illness it purports to cure: “If certain acts of violation of treaties are crimes, they are crimes whether the United States does them or whether Germany does them, and we are not prepared to lay down a rule of criminal conduct against others which we would not be willing to have invoked against us.”
The legacy of these trials remains controversial to this day as the United States and its Allies have since the end of the Cold War precisely resorted to aggression in order to impose “democracy” in areas of the world where, not surprisingly, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization seemed to have determined that it would further its geopolitical interests.
The Human Rights Religion
In pursuit of its crusade on behalf of “democracy and human rights”, the West indulged in a form of malignant narcissism sometimes bordering on outright hubris: indeed, who can forget former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright’s now infamous quip about the United States as “the indispensable nation”?
French legal scholar Jean-Louis HAROUEL expounded on the insidiousness of the normative approach as relates to human rights. Writing in his seminal book published in 2016, “Les Droits de l’homme contre le peuple”, “Human Rights Against the People”, HAROUEL denounces the hypocritical and selective application of the “Human Rights Religion” in which he sees the post-national State engaging in a distinct form of disincarnated millenarianism often against the inter
Article from LewRockwell