Unrepentant, Unreformed Bully

Unrepentant, Unreformed Bully
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While it is difficult for bullies, in general, to reform and transform into normal, civic and civil individuals, but in many cases , with maturity and vicissitudes of life, many do. However, at the same time, many also remained unreformed and unrepentant. The latter assessment holds true for the United States which continues to adhere to being a backyard bully, so to speak. This is not a gratuitous assertion or observation. It is validated by the country’s hawkish national security adviser John Bolton’s diatribe against the International Criminal Court (ICC). Bolton threatened the court with sanctions and viciously attacked the institution in contention. What spurred Bolton’s vicious diatribe and threats against the ICC and made him push for sanctions against it was an ICC investigation into alleged American war crimes in Afghanistan. The hawkish ideologue and national security advisor of the United States complemented this by announcing the closure of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) office in Washington because of its calls for an ICC inquiry into Israel. Bolton went as far as threatening to prosecute and even arrest ICC officials if the international court went ahead with investigating America’s war crimes in Afghanistan. Besides reflecting bulling, Bolton’s threats suggest that something is wrong and that an investigation into United States’ behavior in Afghanistan would reveal something dirty and murky. In essence, what Bolton is doing is pre empting and obstructing the putative or potential investigation by throwing a spanner into its works, so to speak. This not only constitutes a travesty but also makes a mockery of international law, justice and institutions built to protect and advance these ideals. The implication or even inference that can be drawn here is that the United States considers itself above the law. Obviously, this can set a precedent for others to follow if and when they are in breach of the law and have committed crimes against humanity. The corollary that is operative here is that, in the final analysis, the corpus of international law , is weak against the authority and privileges of the state and the state system thereof. These are the broad and generic consequences that flow from Bolton’s threats. There are particular issues to. These pertain to the nature of the United States which never ceases to purport and advance itself as a beacon of human rights, democracy and justice. Obviously, against the backdrop of the country’s recent and even past record and now , in terms of Bolton’s threats, the United States’ rhetorical flourishes and even its self understanding among some quarters of its population, all this flounders on the rocks of reality.

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