,

Mladic revisited: An unremarkable news item, were it not for the absurdity of the process

Mladić at the start of the ICC Trial in May 2012

Ratko Mladic, the former Bosnian Serb commander largely responsible for the Srebrenica Massacre in 1995 lost his appeal with the special UN tribunal set up to judge the case. He had been convicted on ten counts including genocide and crimes against humanity. This is an unremarkable news item really, were it not for the absurdity of the process.

The first Nuremberg Trial (20 November 1945 – 1 October 1946) took less than a year to try 24 of the most prominent Nazis after World War II. Imagine if that trial had dragged on for as long: it would have been lingering on until the 1970’s. True, despite having been charged in July 1996, Mladic was not apprehended and extradited to the Hague for trial by the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) until May 2011. Still, most of the ICTY’s cases had been dealt with by then. Nevertheless, the trial formally began a whole year later and he was not convicted until 22 November 2017, after which, the appeals process, that has only now been completed, was referred to the successor body, International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals.

Moreover, part of the responsibility for the genocide also lies with the UN as Unravelling the United Nations makes perfectly clear. So it seems rather rich that it should be sitting in judgement over the atrocities relating to the former Yugoslavia. I guess the same thing could be said about the Nuremberg Trials, as the allies were far from innocent, especially the US, whose indiscriminate use of atom bombs was also nothing less than genocide (though we are not allowed to call it that). However, the fact that the victors should sit in judgement is not remarkable.

As for Mladic, the ICC is at least one step removed from the UN, and judging such cases is precisely what it was set up to do. This would have saved the UN some face, although as discussed in the May issue of The Gordian, its track record certainly does not inspire confidence.

  • The UN in Focus series holds the United Nations accountable to UN-aligned’s standards.

Take ownership of UN-aligned

Unlike most organisations, UN-aligned is, primarily, its members. We are the New United Nations and though just a drop in the ocean, for now, we will carry on growing until we will become a force to be reckoned with! The more of us there are, the more chance we have of achieving our aims. Help us by promoting membership to you friends or to people you think have similar values. If every member added another, membership would snowball and we would be unstoppable! We also need active members: people who roll up their sleeves and contribute to the work of the organisation. Some already have, for instance, by writing articles for The Gordian, or offering to help with proofreading.

No matter what you can do, we want you. Write to us with your talents and we’ll make it work. 
The Gordian
The Gordian Magazine Cover

Off with the head! Getting Rid of Phoney Justice

Welcome to the September issue of The Gordian.

Executing a human being and punishments like solitary confinement are as coldblooded and premeditated as murder and torture can get. They are not in self-defence, because the danger has passed. It is not justice, because a person can always outweigh their deeds, and they can change, given the chance. The theme of this series is still justice and in this issue, we are looking at it from different angles, including those phoney ones imposed on the guilty with little or no respect for their welfare and human right.

This issue offers the usual mix of politics, interviews and culture by UN-aligneders across the world, including Ruby Goldenberg, Carla Pietrobattista, Katharina Wüstnienhaus, Victoria Davila, Partho Chatterjee and Maya Bearyman, Cristina Mihailescu, Omar Alansari-Kreger, Atika Harba and Sonia Roopnarain.

The editors are Adrian Liberto and Ariana Yekrangi.

Read The Gordian for free

The Gordian Magazine is a community-supported magazine that shares YOUR revolutionary ideas in regards to human rights, animal welfare and environmental protection. Every issue contains global news, opinions and long reads accompanied by striking photography and insightful companion pieces.

We promise not to spam your inbox. Find how we use your information.

Or become a free member.

Subscribe to The Gordian Magazine
The Gordian Magazine is a community supported magazine that shares YOUR revolutionary ideas in regards to human rights, animal welfare and environmental protection. Every issue contains global news, opinions and long reads accompanied by striking photography and insightful companion pieces.

UN-aligned uses cookies to make this website better.