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calendar   Sunday - March 12, 2006

Sunday Discussion Thread

So what do ya think? Was he a madman, a genocidal maniac or what? Regardless, he’s dead. He and Yassir Arafish can compare notes down in hell, I suppose. What’s your opinion of Ol’ Slobby ... ?

imageimageHistory Now Will Be Milosevic’s Judge
March 11, 2006

AMSTERDAM, Netherlands (AP)

One of history’s most important trials has ended abruptly with the death of former Yugoslav leader Slobodan Milosevic. After four years, hundreds of witnesses, tens of thousands of documents and tens of millions of dollars, Milosevic can never be pronounced guilty or innocent.

The trial’s premature conclusion also raises questions about the conduct of tribunal judges who made key decisions that led to an exhausting, expensive five-year process. “That’s $200 million down the drain” said Michael Scharf, a former State Department attorney and an expert in international criminal law.

As in previous cases with the death of a defendant, the indictment was to be withdrawn. “The proceedings will be terminated,” tribunal spokeswoman Alexandra Milenov said. Milosevic, 64, who was extradited to The Hague in June 2001, was found lifeless in his bed early Saturday at the U.N. detention center. He had been defending himself against 66 counts of war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide in Croatia, Bosnia and
Kosovo during the 1990s.

“It’s a huge setback for justice,” said Richard Dicker, legal adviser of Human Rights Watch. “Most of all, it’s a setback for the victims.” Chief U.N. war crimes prosecutor Carla Del Ponte said she regretted Milosevic’s death because she believed she would have won his conviction. According to the schedule dictated by the court, he had only a few weeks to go before winding up his defense and handing over the massive case to the three judges to begin their deliberations.

The International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia was created in 1993 to try those responsible for atrocities during the Balkan wars then raging. It was the first experiment in international war crimes jurisprudence since World War II, and was the model for the creation of more tribunals. But the success of the court was being weighed by the happenings in Courtroom I, where the defiant, combative Serb leader sparred with witnesses and judges alike.

His victims and former enemies lamented their lost chance to hear the verdict of impartial judges. “Justice was late,” said Hashim Thaci, the leader of ethnic Albanian armed insurgency against Milosevic’s forces in 1998-99 in Kosovo’s capital Pristina. “God took him.” The possibility of his death before the trial’s conclusion was the trial judges’ nightmare. With his history of chronic heart problems, frequent flu attacks, late nights preparing his defense and the stress of the courtroom, Milosevic was always at high risk.

- More on this story here ...


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Posted by The Skipper   United States  on 03/12/2006 at 08:01 AM   
Filed Under: • CrimeGenocide •  
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Oh, and here's some kind of visitor flag counter thingy. Hey, all the cool blogs have one, so I should too. The Visitors Online thingy up at the top doesn't count anything, but it looks neat. It had better, since I paid actual money for it.
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