That crime is described in section 3(e) of the convention as "complicity in genocide.". Clark's perspective, there are many forces which perpetuate genocide, the largest one being a persistent interests pattern of theft of Aboriginal lands and resources that violates even the newcomers' own laws. The record, he would argue, is quite clear that this theft and extinguishment of Indian country is never criminalized in the domestic courts of Canada and the usa. Who has ever been charged, let alone convicted, let alone incarcerated, for violating what is described in the constitution of Canada as an"existing Aboriginal and treaty right? The contemporary modes of human destruction may be expressed among Indigenous peoples in all sorts of internalized ways, including in high rates of suicide, drug and alcohol abuse, and domestic conflict, all phenomena that can easily be connected, for instance, to the abuses that characterized. And the most culpable agency of all in maintaining the conditions of genocide are,. Clark's judgment and experience, the courts, which regularly sanction continuing procedures to extinguish Aboriginal rights and titles to the lands and resources of North America. Clark's whole career, at least since he left in the early 1970s his successful practice in general law in haileybury Ontario, can be interpreted as an effort not to be complicit in genocide, which in his view is genuinely perpetuated by the legal establishment.
Moreover, given the high rate of proven physical and sexual abuse which took place in these institutions, as well as the fact that the whole purpose of the primary purpose of the schools was to teach Indian children to despise and renounce their own Aboriginal. That provision refers to "causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group." Section 2(c) is also applicable. It defines genocide as "deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about physical destruction in whole or in part.". The legal proceedings presently underway in Canada vividly illustrate how the issue is being divorced from its true context as a crime that easily fulfills the un's definition of genocide. After denying for decades that it had any responsibility whatsoever for what happened in the Christian residential schools it sanctioned, financed and oversaw, in 1997 the minister of Indian Affairs Jane Stewart finally apologized, but only to those former students who had been raped. To this day the canadian government has not addressed the issue of the psychological abuse that was integral to a education system whose very purpose was to alienate children from their own cultural background in the name of what was called at the time,. The genocide convention also details that people are guilty of genocide not only if they are directly involved in doing it themselves. The convention also makes it a crime for those people who know about genocide, but who actively deny it exists, or merely keep silent and do nothing about.
All the north Atlantic Treaty Organization countries in western Europe have participated actively in the formative phases of ethnic cleansing in North America. This transformation of a vast, pluralistic Indian country into a europeanized adjunct of so-called western civilization, was realized not only through outright killing or displacing Indigenous North American peoples, but also in subjecting their Aboriginal territories to alien laws, alien economies, and alien languages. The transformation of Indigenous languages into alien languages in Canada and the United States serves to illustrate the totalitarian intensity of the legacy of ethnic cleansing in North America. The european languages so dominate, that only French and English have official status in Canada whereas the languages and dialects of many dozens of imperilled Indigenous groups have no official legal status whatsoever. In the officially monocultural melting pot of the United States, only English has official status. Until well into the 1970s, the canadian government paid the major Christian churches in Canada to conspire actively in the coercive silencing of these Aboriginal languages and preventing Indian children from honouring the Great Spirit in the way of their ancestors. The history of these Indian residential schools, which existed in the United States but were forced on Indian country with a singular intensity in Canada, illustrate the very clear existence of government laws, policies and institutions that generated outcomes which clearly lie within the definitions. This instrument of international law was first ratified in 1948, but was it was not adopted by the usa until 40 years later. Article 2(e) of the convention defines genocide to include "forcibly transferring children of the group to another group." That is precisely what the Indian residential schools did, the receiving group being the Christian churches that ran these organizations.
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Apparently, however, ruby's cautionary plea was not enough to sway the law Society. Its officers gave their coneheaded,. Colleague with the Star Wars glasses and essay a penchant for upsetting polite company too often with the word "genocide the martyrdom he allegedly so lusts after. And once that the law Society inquisitors have exorcised their former colleague, the southam chain, by far the largest newspaper conglomerate in Canada, seems to have taken the lead shops in continuing the ritual slaughtering of the messenger of North America's most uncomfortable message. The citizen chose to run. Mckay's McCarthyesque professional obituary not as an opinion piece, but rather as a news story that was picked up by many other information services, including reuters.
On the face of it, words like genocide, treason and fraud do sound excessive, to say the least, when referring to the joint role of police, lawyers, judges and jail guards in applying the laws of Canada, as well as those of the United States. After all, if there's supposed to be genocide in North America, where are the ovens and the concentration camps? Where are the wave after wave of refugees fleeing from their homes in the fashion of the terrible pictures we have been witnessing, as the regime of Slobodan Milosovec "cleanses" what his government calls the "soul of Serbia" of its Kosovar Albanian population? Where are the guatemala style, para-military death squads that killed and thus dispossessed tens of thousands of mayan Indians under the guise of anti-communism. In remarking on this very fresh instance of North American genocidal campaign, undertaken with the full backing and support of the government of the usa in the 1980's, Eduardo galeano recently commented that this massacre "produced one hundred times more dead than in Kosovo, and. Now let's pull the zoom lense of historical conceptualization back further to reveal the inescapable reality that Canada and especially the United States could not exist in their present form if it wasn't for the harshly successful application of some of the most expansive, methodical.
It is thus that. Clark arrived at his elaborate and very unsettling legal theory alleging "treason, fraud and complicity in genocide" on the part of the so-called "legal establishment for their very instrumental role in pronouncing on what will or will not be permitted in imposing the laws, jurisdictions. At first glance, then, there might seem to be little connection between nato's war on ethnic cleansing in the balkans and the disbarring of a lawyer in Ontario canada. Indeed, news of the law's Society's strike on Bruce Clark's professional reputation was presented like a small footnote to history- a kind of wierd curiosity of the modern-day indian wars that was to have put the last nail in the coffin of a legal practitioner. As paul Mckay wrote of Clark in The Ottawa citizen in his gloating announcement of the law Society's decision, "an obsessive, in-your-face messenger with a taste for martyrdom. Has used up his ninth legal life.
The ruling effectively kills the canadian courtroom career of the only lawyer on the planet to combine a banker's suit,. D., conehead haircut, Star Wars glasses, and self-penned writs to arrest judges hearing his cases.". Permission to ridicule. Clark's clothing, eye wear, shaved head and, if any column space is left, his legal theories as well, came right from the very top. "you are a disgrace to the bar canada's Chief Justice, antonio lamer, told Clark in a heated courtroom exchange in 1995. Since then the professional crucifixion has proceeded methodically, with minor obstacles along the way such as when Law Society governor, Clayton Ruby, dropped a little bomb shell. In a report emanating from the law body's disciplinary proceedings,. Ruby declared that "the genocide of which. Clark speaks is real.".
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Shortly following this pre-emptive attack, meant in my view to prevent. Clark's controversial theory from making its way into the procedural mechanisms of Canada's courts, the law society's professional assassination was followed up by a crude journalistic effort to keep the lid on a profoundly significant legal theory. If Dr Clark's legal hypothesis was to be given a genuine, sympathetic hearing in a appropriate judicial venue, i believe it might very well blow the lid off the most basic assumptions underlying nato's new self-declared role as the world's global enforcer of international prohibitions. Along with doug saunders, Thomas Berger Tony mandamin and several others, Clark was prominent among those talented Canadians who helped bring about in the late 1960s and early 1970s a major re-opening of North America's oldest and most complex area of law. Unlike many of his contemporaries, however, most of whom settled into comfortable and lucrative careers exploiting their expertise in one of the legal profession's biggest growth fields, Clark found himself increasingly at odds with his colleagues. The acrimonies tended to develop as Clark was drawn more and more to study the criminal ramifications of what he hazlitt increasingly saw as generation upon generation of stealing land from the Indians in clear violation of the imperial laws which remain entrenched in Canada's constitutional. The remedies for this alleged theft, Clark came increasingly to believe, belonged more in international law than domestic law. Moreover, given the genocidal consequences of these recurring patterns of dispossession, displacement and sometimes the outright killing of the Indians of North America,. Clark looked increasingly to war-crimes-type tribunals as the appropriate form of court to deal with what has happened, and, by some accounts, what still continues to happen, to some native americans paperless in less blatant, but no-less-lethal ways.
As the war in the balkans expands its magnetic field to suck almost every factor of global geopolitics toward its vortex, commentators reach for suitable points of reference in history to explain the conflict. To my way of thinking the very fundamental character of the moral principles at the core of this battle necessitate that we situate this tragedy in a very broad context. The end of the cold War, or even the legacies of World Wars i and ii, hold only very limited parts of the explanation of what is taking place. To me, rather, it is the symbolism of the date english 1492 that best puts in perspective the true nature of the crimes against humanity that the nato powers will have to address as we strive for some new vision of international law capable of securing. How different is the complex web of crimes against humanity in the balkans from the fate visited on, for instance, the real Apaches whose spirited resistance to the armies of their conquerors is now commemorated in the name of one of the United States' most. How can we avoid noticing the bold hypocrisy of nato as its flexes its military muscle powers in the name of its alleged aversion to genocide and ethnic cleansing, while its governors studiously evade questions of complicity in this same genre of international crime that. Many of these central issues of global geopolitics found surprisingly clear and succinct expression in the circumstances surrounding a carefully stage managed professional assault on one of this continent's most insistent witnesses to the reality that North America is no stranger to the crime. Early in April of 1999, just as nato's war planes screamed into yugoslavia, the law Society of Upper Canada, the association representing Ontario's lawyers, elected to disbar.
have any of the public. There is no saying at this point, therefore, if the international shifts triggered by the most recent explosion of the balkan powderkeg are leading to global anarchy, to a global police state or to some new paradigm of global geopolitics that presents a viable alternative. Accordingly, if we are to prevent this war from spinning totally out of control and pushing aside what remains of the fragile and tenuous pillars of the rule of law in the global community, we need quickly to clarify the nature of the unit. The principle of peoplehood seems best poised to replace the reign of nationalism, whose genocidal proclivities have once again been demonstrated in a flareup whose brutal complexities are too easily papered over by the crude demonization of the serbians. Only by emphasizing the self-determination of peoples as a higher ideal than the sovereignty of nation states, can nato bring its actions more in line with its rhetoric. This emphasis on the self-determination of peoples, a polity with roots far deeper than nation states, was first emphasized by American President woodrow Wilson in 1918 as a way to move beyond the clash of imperialisms that characterized World War. After World War ii the principle of the central juridical importance of peoples was entrenched in the founding constitution of the United Nations. In the preamble to the world body's founding charter, "we the peoples of the united nations" outline an agenda to protect the "dignity" and equal worth "of nations large and small." Another American president played an instrumental role in advancing the proposal to move the. In 1960 he ended his presidency by warning of the impending tyranny of what he called the military-industrial complex. The vision he proposed to pre-empt a global police state was some sort of global confederacy of equal peoples - "a confederacy of mutual trust and respect.".
The unself-conscious ease with which the william United States and its nato allies use the names and symbols of Indigenous North American peoples to describe the weaponry in their arsenal, surely speaks to the paradoxes of this bring-in-the-new-millenium war. Where george bush christened his un-sanctioned attack on Iraq in 1991 as the initiating event of a new World Order, it seems this holy jihad was only a prelude to the far more complex and formative conflict to come. Once again, the balkans are at the centre of a conflagration that tenaciously defies all efforts to contain its sweeping global ramifications. As every national government on the planet, including Russia and China, quickly staked out vital geopolitical turf on the conflict, nato's strike on Yugoslavia very quickly established what has become for all intents and purposes a virtual World War iv, if we take the so-called. Like world War i and ii, world War iv has its origins in yet another renewal of Europe's old genocidal hostilities within itself. The rapid realignment we are witnessing in global geopolitics is bringing to the surface many of the most fundamental forces in the human condition whose real dynamics remained hidden throughout most of the cold War-era and the uncertain decade which followed. As nato daily blasts away at what remains of Yugoslavia, it also blasts away at the last vestiges of the fiction that nation states are sovereign within their own boundaries.
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Ethnic Cleansing and Genocide in North America and Kosovo by,. Hall, associate Chair, department of Native american Studies, University of Lethbridge. Hall is a past president of the canadian Alliance in Solidarity essay with the native peoples. His forthcoming book, from Oxford University Press, is entitled. Bowl With One Spoon: Indian country and the American Empire of Private Property. He does a regular column of opinion on the radio side of the canadian Broadcasting Corporation. Connecting the events, Ideas and Personalities. What is to be said of the irony of bringing in Apache helicopters, or tomahawk cruise missiles to rain down nato's bombs of fury on the milosevic regime in Yugoslavia?