universal jurisdiction

Next steps in Syria: End UNSMIS observer mission, and send Kofi Annan home. Also, begin prosecutions of war criminals, and prepare for possible military action—Obama’s Debacle in Syria — Update #60 (July 10)

Latest News and Opinion Editorial, “Annan’s failure” (Kofi Annan’s return to Damascus Sunday evening adds insult to injury after his admission over the weekend that…


Beyond Despair: Obama’s Debacle in Syria—Update #12 (March 16)

[developing] It is easier now to understand how the European Powers and the United States looked the other way as Hitler executed all his opponents…




Update: Torture, The STL in Lebanon, and Obama’s “Way Forward” in Afghanistan

Today we introduce a new feature in The Trenchant Observer, an occasional column commenting on some of the more important events of the previous weeks…









Garzon’s Accusers are Accused: Abuse of Judicial Power in Garzón Case is Stain on Spanish Judiciary

Judge Luciano Varela and the President of the Criminal Chamber of the Supreme Court, Juan Saavedra, have themselves been accused in a private criminal complaint…



In Spain, Judge Baltazar Garzón, Champion of Human Rights, is Prosecuted

The great champion of international human rights and of the exercise of universal jurisdiction in human rights cases, Judge Baltazar Garzón, has been criminally charged by a judge’s order, in a private criminal action (querella) brought by right-wing groups, for alleged abuse of power and violation of an amnesty by investigating matters related the the civil war in Spain.

In an editorial on March 8, 2010, the New York Times condemned this action, saying,

Mr. Garzón should be allowed to resume that work at the earliest possible date. Spain needs an honest accounting of its troubled past, not prosecution of those who have the courage to demand it.