Dispatches from the World Tribunal
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At the start of the third year of the occupation of Iraq, the final session of the World Tribunal in Iraq (WTI) took place June 23-27 in Istanbul, Turkey. The culminating hearings are the result of two years of investigations into violations of international law and human rights by the United States and its allies.
The WTI's international testimonies and verdicts come on the heels of mounting evidence that the Bush administration might have been cooking its books to justify invasion. Nearly six in 10 Americans now say the U.S. should withdraw some or all of its troops from Iraq, and the House of Representatives just announced a formation of the Out of Iraq caucus with 61 founding members.
The Tribunal investigated various issues related to the war on Iraq: the legality of the war, the role of the United Nations, war crimes and the role of the media, as well as the destruction of cultural sites and the environment. WTI participants came from around the world and included Iraqi witnesses and experts as well as distinguished international figures. In his opening remarks, UNESCO Peace Prize holder Richard Falk said the Tribunal was "primarily an expression of popular democracy, of ethical conscience about what is right and wrong in world politics, and an expression of resistance to what is understood around the world as an American project to achieve world domination."
Deep Dish Television, the first national grassroots satellite network, has produced a 13-part, award-winning series called "Shocking & Awful," about the war and occupation of Iraq. The newest segment, just released, is on the World Tribunal on Iraq. Check this schedule for locations. Deep Dish is also selling DVDs with excerpts from the hearings. Contact them at (212 473 8933) or firstname.lastname@example.org. Watch excerpts from WTI proceedings.
Kristina Rizga is an associate editor at AlterNet. She edits WireTap-AlterNet's youth-oriented section.