Monday, May 11, 2009

Argument: Propaganda Rising to a War Cirme

Well this seems to be in part a response to me...
"By Shenonymous, May 6 at 4:41 pm #

When an erosion of freedom of speech begins with any ban, unless it is sedition to overthrow a government, banning anyone for political sentiments will eventually erode your own freedoms, make no mistake about it."
So Thomas Jefferson should have been punished for saying that revolution is a good thing every twenty years or so?
"It is the slipperiest slope imaginable. It is pernicious. That is the nature of fascism. Fascism can occur on the right as well as the fanatical left."
Okay. I don't see how any of that is relevant to what I said.

What I was referring to, context, was incitement to violence: mass murder. This has been acknowledged as constituting war crimes, such as when the result is genocide.
"Savage was not in any way suppressing any one else’s freedom."
Wasn't he? That's a (mindless) blanket defense of a long and stained career. [And irrelevant to what I said, of course. Can you at least try and keep it on point?]
"You who call for limiting Savage’s speech, and travel rights, regardless of how despicable his opinions are, would not censure the Islamists who are calling for the UN via a resolution to outlaw criticism of violent practices in the name of their religion, would you?!"
First of all, I haven't "called" for whatever it is you are saying. That a distracting misrepresentation of what I said.

I said he should be INVESTIGATED FOR WAR CRIMES. War crimes, as we well know, are not actually prosecutable if the person committing them is American, or Israeli apparently. An American Zionist like Savage is in the most priviledged and protected category on earth at the present time.

My position is that people like Yoo, Cheney, Bush, Rummy, Gonzales, et al ad nauseum -- and Savage -- shouldn't be worried about travelling anywhere at all. Their travel arrangements should long ago have been made for them, and they should be sitting in a dock being read extensive lists of war crimes charges.

It's obvious that war crimes prosecutions are only meant for the losers in any given conflict. The victors are spared nuisances like following international law.
"One wonders just how many listen to Savage’s vitriolic broadcasts, and what kind of people they are anyway? Who exactly did Savage incite to violence against Muslims?"
That would be a matter for the court to present. The US has been at war with Muslims for eight years now. The bodies are piling up quite high. Did that elude you?
"This is a claim without any substance."
Propagandists call for people to join the military and go kill the selected enemy. People listening are influenced to do so. They go over and murder the enemy as instructed. There's a case to be examined.

"Free speech" does not protect gangsters who order hits on their rivals. Free speech has numerous limitations regarding "terroristic threats," "coercion," "blackmail" etc. Telling people to commit a crime could land you in prison for "conspiracy." These are standard, rock solid legal principles.

If the same standards were applied to monsters like Goebbels and Savage, there is a case to be made that inciting war is criminal. War is criminal. The Iraq War was clearly a crime (admitted by the head of the United Nations).

You may not agree with the rationale, but this is certainly not a "claim without any substance."
"In 1946, Julius Streicher, the Editor of Der Sturmer, an anti-Semitic paper, was sentenced to hang by the Nuremberg International Military Tribunal for Nazi War Crimes. In sentencing him, the tribunal gave as cause the evidence that “with knowledge of the extermination of the Jews in the Occupied Eastern Territory, this defendant continued to write and publish his propaganda of death.” Streicher was convicted of conspiracy to commit crimes against peace and crimes against humanity. His partner in media crimes, Joseph Goebbels, managed to avoid a similar sentence by committing suicide after first killing his wife and children. "-LINK
"According to prosecutors of the United Nations war crimes tribunal for Rwanda, the answer to both questions is a forceful yes. The three men in the dock, all former Rwandan news media executives, stand accused of genocide and incitement to genocide through their use of radio broadcasts and newspapers. " -LINK
Just because you've never thought about these matters before does not mean that others have not. That's a "permicious" variety of myopia.