David Swanson, DavidDDD
Will Amnesty International recognize the UN Charter and the Kellogg Briand Pact and oppose war and militarism and military spending? Admirable as it is to go after many of the symptoms of militarism, your avoidance of addressing the central problem seems bizarre. The idea that you can more credibly offer opinions on the legality of constituent elements of a crime if you avoid acknowledging the criminality of the whole seems wrong. Your acceptance of drone murders as possibly legal if they are part of wars immorally and, again, bizarrely avoids the blatant illegality of the wars themselves.
As a human rights organization, Amnesty International’s main goal will always be to take that course of action which practically does the most to ensure protection for human rights and respect for international law.

We strongly condemn opportunities which have been missed to take effective measures to protect human rights and civilians.

We treat the fundamental human right to life with utmost importance -- hence the importance and status we give to our global death penalty campaign.

We also believe that governments must not be allowed to use ‘security’ as an excuse to carry out human rights violations against their citizens.

We know, for example, that the humanitarian and human rights catastrophe in Syria did not develop overnight. For the last few years, the states involved and the international community as a whole have manifestly failed to take effective action to stem the crisis, protect civilians, and hold perpetrators of crimes against humanity and war crimes to account. For several years now, Amnesty International’s calls for targeted sanctions, an arms embargo and a referral of the situation in Syria to the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court have gone largely unheeded despite the mounting toll on civilians.

On drones: we find the use of drone aircraft deeply troubling, and we have published reports on the terrible suffering they have caused, for example in Pakistan, where the title speaks for itself "Pakistan: Will I be next? US drone strikes in Pakistan".
amnesty.org/en/documents/...13/en/

The current status quo is absolutely unacceptable, as is the handwashing of the US administration on this theme.
Continue reading...