by Max Barry

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by The Despicable Cosmo Moralist of Wallenburg. . 8 reads.

TEP Ministry of WA Affairs: Official Opinion on "Command Responsibility"

Opinion on Command Responsibility
Office of the Ministry of World Assembly Affairs of the East Pacific

A wealth of existing legislation prohibits various atrocities of war, especially in order to protect civilians from undue suffering and death. Such barbaric practices as the murder of surrendered soldiers, pillage of civilians and their property by military forces, use of living shields as defensive measures, and unchecked genocide of national populations deserve nothing less than the most severe condemnations and prohibitions under World Assembly law.

However, such prohibitions do not eliminate war crimes entirely, even when dutifully enforced by the governments of member states. Some military authorities may choose to disregard the law and commit war crimes against enemy military forces and civilian noncombattants alike. Such individuals rely on their authority over soldiers under their command to affect war crimes at the scale usually most concerning to the international community. In order to further attack the curtailment of sapient rights by these criminal actors, their authority must naturally be reduced such that subordinate individuals cannot be penalized for refusing to commit atrocities upon the populations defended under existing war crimes legislation.

The resolution now at Vote does exactly that, and goes further. It first reiterates a prohibiton on war crimes, and holds commanding officers responsible for preventing or penalizing war crimes committed by subordinates. It not only protects a subordinate that refuses to commit war crimes under orders, but requires them to refuse to follow such orders, while still taking into account issues of limited understanding of military circumstances or lack of access to military intelligence. These mandates and others effectively address and eliminate many pretenses given to justify illegal military actions, such that guilty parties must be brought to justice and duly penalized for their criminal behavior.

Recognizing the great value this resolution has in the protection of civilian and military lives alike, and in the enforcement of existing World Assembly legislation on war crimes, we vote strongly in favor of this resolution, and urge a similar vote across the international community.