I’m sure that most people have heard about the case where the DEA (Drug Enforcement Agency) left a man in a holding cell for five days to suffer and die. Despite their attempted murder, the man somehow survived. Will justice ever be served against those responsible? No…probably not…very unlikely to occur. Is justice ever served against government in the corrupt United States?
What I have always believed in has related to ideals of justice and equality for all under the law. I believe that those nations that decided to act as part of a system that punishes those that violate human rights can’t be left unaccountable for their own actions. Do I think any action could possibly occur against the United States? I do not think so. I think the system is corrupt but I think I would like justice to be served against it.
First, let me explain why I think the DEA has committed violations of human rights. I believe that the concept of the “War on Drugs” and the use of armed troops have brought this government agency to the status of a belligerent armed force. Because of this and systematic violations of human rights by this group, I believe the DEA has violated Article 3 of the Third Geneva Conventions and the actions of the DEA constitute war crimes! Some quotes below are bolded or italicized at my discretion.
“Article 3 has been called a "Convention in miniature." It is the only article of the Geneva Conventions that applies in non-international conflicts. It describes minimal protections which must be adhered to by all individuals within a signatory's territory during an armed conflict not of an international character (regardless of citizenship or lack thereof): Noncombatants, combatants who have laid down their arms, and combatants who are hors de combat (out of the fight) due to wounds, detention, or any other cause shall in all circumstances be treated humanely, including prohibition of outrages upon personal dignity, in particular humiliating and degrading treatment. The passing of sentences must also be pronounced by a regularly constituted court, affording all the judicial guarantees which are recognized as indispensable by civilized peoples. Article 3's protections exist even if one is not classified as a prisoner of war. Article 3 also states that parties to the internal conflict should endeavour to bring into force, by means of special agreements, all or part of the other provisions of GCIII.”
Above lists the relevant section. I think some would debate the validity of this. If so, then I would state that the actions of the DEA violate the fourth Geneva conventions in regards to the protection of civilians in time of war (“War on drugs”, remember?). Let me list some relevant quotes.
“The Convention shall also apply to all cases of partial or total occupation of the territory of a High Contracting Party, even if the said occupation meets with no armed resistance.”
So I think that essentially means that the DEA that has been used to occupy some areas of American soil while conducting war must treat civilians (non-enemy combatants OR as Article 3 (1) states, “(1) Persons taking no active part in the hostilities, including members of armed forces who have laid down their arms and those placed hors de combat by sickness, wounds, detention, or any other cause, shall in all circumstances be treated humanely, without any adverse distinction founded on race, colour, religion or faith, sex, birth or wealth, or any other similar criteria.”) with various protections from hostile acts including…
(a) violence to life and person, in particular murder of all kinds, mutilation, cruel treatment and torture;
(b) taking of hostages;
(c) outrages upon personal dignity, in particular humiliating and degrading treatment;
(d) the passing of sentences and the carrying out of executions without previous judgment pronounced by a regularly constituted court, affording all the judicial guarantees which are recognized as indispensable by civilized peoples. (From Article 3).
It is indisputable to me that the DEA have committed war crimes against prisoners of war and/or civilians held in captivity.
If that isn’t enough, I believe the actions of the DEA against civilians constitute grave crimes against humanity. You may be asking, what are “crimes against humanity”??? Let me quote the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court. These crimes are defined…
"are particularly odious offenses in that they constitute a serious attack on human dignity or grave humiliation or a degradation of one or more human beings. They are not isolated or sporadic events, but are part either of a government policy (although the perpetrators need not identify themselves with this policy) or of a wide practice of atrocities tolerated or condoned by a government or a de facto authority. Murder; extermination; torture; rape; political, racial, or religious persecution and other inhumane acts reach the threshold of crimes against humanity only if they are part of a widespread or systematic practice. Isolated inhumane acts of this nature may constitute grave infringements of human rights, or depending on the circumstances, war crimes, but may fall short of falling into the category of crimes under discussion."
So that would mean that the systematic use of torture, degradation and humiliation including widespread government persecution of drug users for political purposes constitute crimes against humanity. The ICC defines this in article 7.
“For the purpose of this Statute, "crime against humanity" means any of the following acts when committed as part of a widespread or systematic attack directed against any civilian population, with knowledge of the attack:
(e) Imprisonment or other severe deprivation of physical liberty in violation of fundamental rules of international law;
(h) Persecution against any identifiable group or collectivity on political, racial, national, ethnic, cultural, religious, gender as defined in paragraph 3, or other grounds that are universally recognized as impermissible under international law, in connection with any act referred to in this paragraph or any crime within the jurisdiction of the Court;
(i) Enforced disappearance of persons;
(j) The crime of apartheid;
(k) Other inhumane acts of a similar character intentionally causing great suffering, or serious injury to body or to mental or physical health.“
Simply one example includes the false imprisonment and attempted murder by state sponsored terrorists (DEA) against Daniel Chong (the man mentioned earlier). Since the topic has come into focus, let me mention how the US should be held responsible for promoting state sponsored criminals and terrorists. It is debatable whether a state can conduct acts of “terror” but I think the state sponsored acts of the DEA including intimidation, persecution and torture are enough to denounce its support as state sponsored terror. If I take international law into account then the US can be held accountable for the actions of supporting terrorist groups and having money used to fund it frozen and unusable.
So who should be held ultimately accountable? Well, I think the DEA itself should be labeled as state sponsored terror and economic and political sanctions should be placed against the US until such ties are dissolved. Furthermore, those DEA agents responsible for various crimes including its Administrator, Michele Leonhart and anyone in the DoD responsible over this agency should be charged with crimes against humanity.
I think that is essentially all I have to write about this in regards to legal concepts. I think the US should surrender those responsible for trial at an international court to answer for their crimes; if not then the Security Council SHOULD have the power to sanction the US economically and politically for its failure to respond to abuses of human rights within its territory.