Ex-U.N. Assistant Secretary-General Dennis Halliday
2005 International Commission of Inquiry on War Crimes and Crimes Against Humanity Committed by the Bush Administration of the United States
Manhattan Center Studios, Grand Ballroom
311 West 34th Street
Friday from 4 to 10, Saturday from noon to 6
212-941-8086 bushcommission.org, nion.org
Ever wonder why President Clinton's lie about his sex life led to impeachment trials, while President Bush's (a) lies and (b) flip-flopping on the reasons for a war have not? The 2005 International Commission of Inquiry, in the tradition of the Nuremberg trials, has formed to fill the oversight void left by Congress and the U.N. and to put the Bush administration's policies to the test of international law and a jury of conscience. Inspired by the Not in Our Name Statement of Conscience, the first day will have a panel of jurors try Bush and his collaborators in four areas: (1) wars of aggression, (2) torture and indefinite detention, (3) destruction of the global environment, and (4) attacks on global public health (with an emphasis on the AIDS epidemic). Representatives of the Bush administration will be invited to present an argument in their own defense at a later session. Day two examines the administration's response to Hurricane Katrina. The commission will be keynoted by Howard Zinn, author of A People's History of the United States; Michael Ratner, president of the Center for Constitutional Rights; and Marcus Raskin, co-founder of the Institute for Policy Studies. For many affected by war or disaster, a trial of Bush and co. for crimes against humanity may seem long in coming.