Thursday, July 28, 2011

Will the police investigate Blair's war crimes?

Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair touches down in Auckland today on his speaking tour. Meanwhile, Global Peace and Justice Auckland has laid a complaint with the New Zealand police, asking that they detain Blair for war crimes. The crimes in question - grave breaches of the Geneva Convention including the indiscriminate use of force against civilians - are clearly illegal under New Zealand law. So will the police investigate? Sadly, I'm not holding my breath. In incidents like this in the past, they have shown that they are more interested in protecting the powerful than enforcing the law. And I expect them to do exactly the same for Tony Blair. But the cost of this is to undermine respect for the law, encourage the view that it is simply a tool of the powerful against the powerless. As someone who thinks the law should be more than this, that it is there to protect all of us, not just those the rapists-in-blue deem worthy of protection, I find this highly disappointing.

Meanwhile, protestors have already gathered at the venue for Blair's speech, and while I expect him to be hustled in a back door (so as to protect his delicate sensibilities from public opinion), it will at least remind his sociopathic audience (including blogger DPF, who'da thunk it?) of the sort of man they're paying to hear. And the article makes it clear that there's at least one person there going after the bounty for a peaceful citizen's arrest of Blair. I wish them luck.