The Instigator
Metz
Pro (for)
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21 Points
The Contender
Unconlv
Con (against)
Tied
21 Points

Jan/Feb LD International Court Resolution

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/19/2009 Category: Politics
Updated: 7 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 1,138 times Debate No: 6578
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (4)
Votes (6)

 

Metz

Pro

The Actual resolution is too long to fit into the comment box so here it is:

Resolved: The United States ought to submit to the jurisdiction of an international court designed to prosecute crimes against humanity

All I ask of my opponent is that he/she is familiar with the Lincoln Douglas style of debate and will debate accordingly.

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"America now stands as the world's foremost power. We should be proud: Not since the age of the Romans has one people achieved such preeminence. But we are not Romans; we do not seek an empire. We are Americans, trustees of a vision and a heritage that commits us to the values of democracy and the universal cause of human rights." Because I agree with Senator John Kerry I Must Affirm the Resolution, Resolved: The United States ought to submit to the jurisdiction of an international court designed to prosecute crimes against humanity.

My Value for this debate is peace. Peace is not only the greatest goal of every nation but is the goal of the International community as a whole. It is also the best Value to fit the resolution, as peace should be the goal of every foreign policy decision. Peace is not simply the absence of War but is better defined as harmonious relations between people and countries. While this does include absence of war this alone does not create peace. Because peace is so paramount we must weigh the round on who better achieves peace.

My Criterion is Harmonic Cosmopolitanism, Harmonic Cosmopolitanism is the view that one's primary moral obligations are directed to all human beings and political arrangements should faithfully reflect this universal moral obligation. However Harmonic Cosmopolitanism does not mean the elimination of sovereignty. In the same manner as world government is not harmonious neither is absolute sovereignty harmonious. A world Government does not respect the social contract and pure sovereignty has no respect for humanity. It is here when we must find a middle ground, a harmony so the two may work side by side. It is here we find this proposed concept of Harmonic Cosmopolitanism. "Crimes against humanity," by definition, are so heinous as to threaten the moral order of all humankind, not just individuals within any given nation. Thus, their existence requires a cosmopolitan outlook. Without this Universal Moral Duty the International community would condone such events as the holocaust, if it did not directly affect their national borders. We would not intervene is Humanitarian Crisis such as the Rwanda Genocide, and Humanity would lose much of its worth. As Immanuel Kant Notes "a violation of right on one place of the earth is felt in all places. Violations of cosmopolitan right would make more difficult the trust and cooperation necessary for perpetual peace among states." It is a supplement to the unwritten code of the civil and international law, indispensable for the maintenance of the public human rights and hence also of perpetual peace. One cannot flatter oneself into believing one can approach this peace except under the condition outlined here. "
Thus Cosmopolitanism is the surest way to international peace and is the best criteria to achieve peace in the round.

Definitions:
Ought: Used to Express advisability (Merriam Webster)
Submit: to defer to or consent to abide by the opinion or authority of another (Merriam Webster)
Jurisdiction: the territory or sphere over which the legal authority of a court or other institution extends.

Crimes against humanity, as defined by the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court Explanatory Memorandum, "are particularly odious offences in that they constitute a serious attack on human dignity or grave humiliation or a degradation of one or more human beings. They are not isolated or sporadic events, but are part either of a government policy or of a wide practice of atrocities tolerated or condoned by a government or a de facto authority.

1st contention International court will deter future crimes against humanity.
In late 2004, tensions flared in The African Nation of Cote d'Ivoire, fueled by radio broadcasts of hate speech and violent groups in the streets these acts were strikingly reminiscent of the hate speech that preceded the Rwanda genocide. In response, Juan Mendez, a UN advisor on genocide, wrote the Security Council a widely-publicized note that reminded them that the ICC has jurisdiction over acts, such as hate speech, that lead to crimes against humanity. The message was received in Cote d'Ivoire: the hate speech and the immediate threat of violence subsided. Without an International Court the hate speech would have continued, and the World could be faced with another Rwanda. The Circumstances of both were the same, however there was no International Court at the time of Rwanda. Had their been, it is safe to say based upon the events in the Cote d'Ivoire, the Genocide would have been prevented.

2nd contention The U.S joining the ICC would further legitimize it.
The U.S stands as the world's foremost power, we hold massive Political "soft Power" If we were to join an international court not only would others follow suit but we would add further legitimacy to it. Scott Turner, Professor at University of Montevallo Writes "To be sure, it may be difficult to proceed without the United States, whose support was crucial to the administration of international justice in the 1990s. The effectiveness of international institutions is highly dependent upon cooperation and assistance from the world's most powerful country. The ICC's legitimacy would be undermined severely by an institutionalized double standard that effectively excluded the United States and its client states from the court's jurisdiction." The Fact that the U.S holds such a large amount of influence makes us almost the deciding factor in the Influence of an international court. A court without the U.S will be weaker and will perform less effectively than one that has U.S membership. The influence of the U.S would increase that of the court allowing the court to work towards its ultimate end, Peace.

3rd Contention
A.We can see examples of this in Cases such as the Rwanda Genocide. On Thursday, December 18, 2008, A former Rwandan army colonel, Theoneste Bagosora, accused of genocide and crimes against humanity for masterminding the killings of more than half a million people, was convicted by A U.N war Crimes Tribunal. Without an International court Bagosora would have remained unpunished, clearly international courts are Beneficial to member states. An Article done for the International Studies Association further found that "states with a recent history of violence, in the 1990-2005 period ratify the ICC Statute more often that not if they emerge from civil conflicts. This result validates ad hoc observation that in a number of states, transitional regimes charged with ending a cycle of recent internal conflict have found it prudent to join the ICC, precisely because it offers an International bulwark against a return to routine political violence."
B.There is a simple fact that nobody expects violence in the nature, in the Immortal Words of Monty Pythons, John Cleese "nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition!" Who could have predicted the holocaust? or Rwanda? The simple fact is these cannot be predicted. Saying that we should not join due to present circumstances is ignorant. The fact is we must look not only towards the present but towards the Future. It is wise for the United States to have this "international Bulwark." Furthermore if we accept them to be helpful why should we exclude ourselves? This would be Hypocritical and would actively work to destroy both Cosmopolitanism and any notion of peace.

I am going to Run this case next weekend and want to tie up loose ends, as well as have a fun Debate on this Topi
Unconlv

Con

Resolved: The United States ought to submit to the jurisdiction of an international court designed to prosecute crimes against humanity.

Value: Justice My value is justice; justice is the quality of being just, impartial, and fair. Justice is the value for the resolution because the goal of determining whether the U.S should submit to the jurisdiction of an international court designed to prosecute crimes against humanity or not is to bring justice to the world.

Value Criterion: National Sovereignty
My value criterion is national sovereignty. National sovereignty is a nation being free from external control. We can achieve justice through national sovereignty because by keeping the national sovereignty and let the country such as the U.S itself has the jurisdiction we can achieve justice.
Notice the resolution use the word "ought" that we should determine whether the resolution should be achieved or not in terms of morality.
ICC is an international court that is designed to prosecute crimes against humanity that most fits the resolution.
Since the U.S is part of the UN, the U.S seeks to promote the cooperation of the world to bring justice

Argument 1: The U.S court is more appropriate to prosecute its own citizens.
A.The ICC got nothing done
The ICC treaty has been signed more than 10 years ago, but the ICC couldn't fully prosecute any criminals who committed crimes against humanity. For instance, even though the ICC has dealt with 12 cases, the ICC fails to prosecute any criminals. The case, The prosecutor vs. Joseph Kony, began in 2004, but he still commits crimes against humanity. With the ICC alone, it is in reality, not feasible to punish any criminals.
B.Contains many flaws
i.There is no checks and balance system
1.Although the court is being overseen by many nations, the court itself doesn't have any system to prevent the future abuses. So far, all the authorities of the ICC are in the hands of the prosecutor and the judges. Excluding the U.N Security Council to oversee the whole system and any counteracting branch, it is invulnerable to political abuses.
2.Arrest warrants
A.Despite all 12 arrest warrants that are issued, only four are under arrest and can't boast of a single prosecution.
C.U.S court is very effective in prosecution
A.The prosecution of the U.S court almost all the time succeeds.
B.Fine check and balances system
i.Counteracting branches exist to prevent future abuses

D. Link: The ICC is not appropriate to prosecute any criminals that the U.S court has better system to prosecute the criminals who committed crimes against humanity. Through preserving the national sovereignty and having the criminals punished with the U.S court, we will have justice in the most appropriate court.

Argument 2: The United States can't possibly agree with the ICC because it doesn't protect constitutional rights
A.no right to jury trial….
B. no right to speedy trial- in the U.S the prosecution can take place for 90 days. ICC prosecutors must only ensure defendants the right to be tried without undue delay.
C. International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTFY) practive, which the ICC is based, also unlimited hearsay evidence and anonymous witnesses to testify in trials. Using this vague evidence to prosecute criminals, they can't bring justice.
D. Could place in double jeopardy in ICTFY, the prosecutors have appealed very judgment of acquittal.
E. It is obvious that the U.S gov. can't possibly adhere to the ICC, which fundamentally contradicts the U.S ideology of what rights should be considered fundamentally rights.
F. The U.S has the best judicial system in the world- for over 200 years prosecuted crimes but still has the structure for a successfully functioning government. Maintained independence with checks and balance system.
G. With the best judicial system, the U.S has been bringing justice effectively however the ICC, which doesn't guarantee all the rights, it can't bring justice as effective as the U.S. By keeping its national sovereignty, the U.S will preserve justice in its own land.

Now moving on to rebuttal.....

Value: The whole resolution, specifically "crimes against humanity" and "international court" deals with justice not peace. A court, including an international court, exist to serve justice, and the main goal of the whole resolution is to determine the most effective way to serve justice because proving the legitimacy of the resolution implies that an international court having the jurisdiction will serve justice better than the U.S court, and disproving implies the other way around.
The resolution deals with the prosecution of criminals who comitted crimes against humanity, which implies serving justice to humanity.
Furthermore, one outcome of justice is peace (other outcomes can be retribution, equal rights...), which means that peace needs justice in order for it to be acheived. Absence of war, which is peace, can be acheived by having justice, giving everyone their fair due (granting equal rights, punishing all the criminals.....) that justice will eliminate all the elements of war. On the other hand, justice doesn't require peace in order to be achieved.
Therefore justice is the superior value.

VC: Harmonic Cosmopolitanism contradicts the submission to an international court because submisstion to an internatinal court will result in violation of self-determination right of citizens, which is deprived from one of the natural rights (liberty).

Contentions:
C1: My C1 outweighs my opponents' C1 in its importance because the ICC's, which is the international court used by both sides, purpose is to prosecute criminals who committed crimes against humanity however the ICC so far couldn't bring justice to any criminals. The court may deter crimes, such as hate speech, but the court is not able to bring justice to criminals like Joseph Kony who is actually committing crimes against humanity. It has been about 5 years since the arrest warrant was issued, but Joseph Kony is still committing severe crimes. Thus, the ICC is not able to do its job, stopping the most severe crimes against humanity.

C2. 1. There's no reason why the U.S is morally obligated to legitimize this insufficient court that hasn't been able to prosecute any criminals in 10 years.
2. The U.S joining the ICC will not make other countries follow and join the ICC because Bill administration, one of the founders of the ICC, eventually didn't ratify the treaty because the administration couldn't make enough changes on its own to be satified. Which means that the U.S is not influential enough to make changes in other countries opinions.
3. If the U.S join the court now, the court will not operate to work torwards peace because of its insufficiency and no counteracting branch to prevent it from abuses. Even if the U.S joining legitimizes the court, it would be strenghthening this dangerous court.

C3. A: First of all, U.N war Crimes Tribunal is not an international court designed to prosecute crimes against humanity. No evidence of ICC being a beneficial entity in terms of doing its job.
B. 1. The U.S stance proves that the U.S clearly not finds the court to be helpful 2. Not Hypocritical because the courts' record and it's invulneralbility to abuses obviously shows that it is right choice to be careful in deciding whether the U.S should join or not. 3. The U.S already has bigger internatinoal Bulwarks like U.N NATO... no need for another one. How can an international court can be a bulwark if it only serves as a judicial function. 4. As I wrote earlier, submission will actually will work to destroy cosmopolitanism 5. Agreeing that we can't perdict what kind of disaster will happen in future, we shouldn't submit to this laking court. 6. Court actually disturbs peace because ICC warrants broke the peace negoetiations with LRA...
Debate Round No. 1
Metz

Pro

AFF/NEG

Value: First of all the resolution does not Imply that an International court can serve justice better but asks whether or not the U.S should join. The goal of the U.S International Policy should be to promote peace, Justice does not automatically create peace either. If the outcome of justice is peace than every Just action should create peace. Justice May be one way to achieve peace but not the only way. The Means I have Presented to lead to peace is Cosmopolitanism, this upholds many of the same concepts my opponent says can create peace and is a much better way to do so than justice. Also Peace does not require justice, Justice does not create peace and Peace is a higher value in the round

Criterion: My opponent says that submission will hurt the right of self determination, however he provides no examples as to how it does this. Cosmopolitanism is the best way to achieve peace, and for that matter justice. We have a moral obligation to humanity which is best filled by joining an International court.

Contention 1
The First trial date for the ICC is set for January 26 2009, in five days. They currently have 3 other criminals in Custody. Five years for an arrest is not as bad as my opponent makes it out to be. He cannot possible say this makes the ICC beneficial when the U.S has spent longer searching for Osama Bin Laden and even national criminals. The fact is my opponent missed the major concept of this contention. These courts can deter CAH, I have proven, and it was not refuted that the ICC intervention in the Cote d'Ivoire most likely stopped another genocide such as Rwanda. The U.S has a legal Obligation to stop human rights violations internationally( Ch. 22, US Code. Sec. 2304.) " the President is directed to formulate and conduct international security assistance programs of the United States in a manner which will promote and advance universal human rights" The Moral obligation to prevent genocide should be enough but now I present a LEGAL obligation to do so.

Contention 2
1. First the ICC has only been around for 6 years and only opened investigations in 2004 for Uganda and congo and 2005 for Darfur and 2007 for the Central African Republic. They have already caught the Major perpatrator in the Central African Republic.
2. This is a bit Unclear as I am not sure what is meant by "bill administration" The U.S holds a massive amount of political influence, this is pretty obvious, we are a member of the security council, hold massive diplomatic power and even soft power.
3. There is a counteracting branch to the ICC, The ICC is checked by the member states as well as by the U.N security council, which the U.S is a member. The court is not dangerous, it has not abused its power as of yet and there is no reason to believe it will do so. Has the U.N ever abused its power towards the U.S?

Contention 3.
A war crimes Tribunal Does constitute an International court designed to prosecute crimes against humanity. It is International, and it prosecute crimes against humanity. This plainly fits the definition, also it can be easily and logically assumed that the ICC would have similar benefits due to its similar nature.
B. 1. The U.S stance does not prove anything, it merely proves that an old presidential Administration did not support the court for whatever reasons. 2. While we may be careful the fact is we have a moral obligation to join such a court as well as a legal one. 3. The ICC is more specially tailored to dealing with Human rights Abuses 4. Already addressed this 5. This court ensures that no great disaster WILL happen in the form of Human Rights Abuses. 6. No warrant, also one decision does not mean that future decisions will reflect this.

NEG

Value: First the Definition of Justice as being just is circular, Fairness and Impartiality are better upheld by affirmation due to an elimination of bias in the court.

Criterion: Freeing a nation from external control is a flawed idea. What about Rwanda? should the international community have not helped in restoring peace and securing human rights? Nazi Germany? Also Submission to an International court would not violate U.S sovereignty as the ICC is a court of last resort.
2. There is no Link between this and the Value, besides Sovereignty Implies Justice, this is not true as I gave shown with Rwanda and Nazi Germany and there is no warrant to the Negative Claim. Thus this Criterion Falls.

Observations
1. The resolution, I agree is primarily a moral question , so whoever can prove a moral obligation better should win.
2. The ICC is one court yes but there are others such as the IACHR
3. The U.S is part of the U.N and thus believes in Promoting Cosmopolitan Values, which included submission to the ICC in order to bring Justice to Criminals all over the world.

Contention 1
A. The ICC has only been investigating since 2004, according to the ICC website. It has issued 12 arrest warrants but has not actually failed in those cases. Infact the first trail is set for 5 days, proving the ICC does infact work. The fact that Kony has not been caught means nothing, the U.S has failed to catch millions of criminals including Osama bin Laden who we have been searching for longer than the ICC has looked for Kony.
B.
1. The ICC is checked by member states as well as by the U.N. The U.S is a member of the U.N security council and thus would be able to prevent any abuse of the court. Also the Prosecutor and Judges are elected by the Member states.
C. The U.S effectiveness can be summed up in one word, Blackwater. While for the most part the U.S prosecutes its criminals Blackwater guards escaped untouched with over 60 felony charges due to a U.S legal loophole.
The ICC has systems in place to prevent Abuse as well.

D. The ICC would not disallow the U.S to prosecute its own Criminals, According the the Rome Statute of the ICC the ICC is a court of last resort and only steps in when a country fails to prosecute because it is either unwilling or unable. Thus there is no violation of American sovereignty.

Contention 2
A. while the ICC may not have a jury trail, many Americans do not receive a jury trail when they commit crimes in other countries and the U.S has no objection. The same Principle applies here.
B. The ICC Statue guarantees the same right to a speedy trail of the U.S constitution. The 90 days is A) a false statement and B) is nowhere in the constitution.
C. The ICTFY is an Older court and does not fit the resolution. The ICC has very similar Provisions to the U.S on the Admittance of Evidence.
D. However the ICC cannot, as is clearly articulated in the ICC statute. The ICC says it does not have jurisdiction when "the person concerned has already been tried for conduct which is the subject of the complaint, and a trial by the Court is not permitted under article 20, paragraph 3;""
E. The ICC has the Most extensive system of trail rights surpassing even the U.S Former U.S. State Department Legal Advisor Monroe Leigh explains:" The list of due process rights guaranteed by the Rome Statute are, if anything, more detailed and comprehensive than those in the American Bill of Rights. . . . I can think of no right guaranteed to military personnel by the U.S. Constitution that is not also guaranteed in the Treaty of Rome"
F. This does not make it infallible as I have shown with Blackwater, Also the U.S has a moral Obligation to Join and help prevent HR abuses in other countries.
G. The ICC is an Internationally Accepted Judicial System, the U.S Itself drafted most of the Trail rights under the Statute and it passes U.S tests. Again it is a court of Last resort and thus, does not violate sovereignty.

Conclusion,
My opponent has no link between his criterion and value. Also His criterion is fulfilled under affirmation because the ICC is a court of Last resort. All of my points stand and My opponents points have been refuted. Thus
Unconlv

Con

Unconlv forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2
Metz

Pro

EXTEND my arguments, I hope my opponent returns so we may finish this debate
Unconlv

Con

Unconlv forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
4 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Posted by Metz 7 years ago
Metz
the counter Burning is soft power... ICc increases soft power increasing heg
Posted by burningpuppies101 7 years ago
burningpuppies101
Its a good opening argument, but I have a neg that pretty much defeats that case.... And some people will run American hedgemony, and claim the ICC hurt hedge... and so on... But thats debate!
Posted by brian_eggleston 7 years ago
brian_eggleston
Superb opening argument. Good luck to your opponent..they'll need it!
Posted by burningpuppies101 7 years ago
burningpuppies101
Did you go to VBT??? I could have sworn I heard that case somewhere.... And is this for Columbia?
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