Rumsfeld On the Run From French Torture Charges

News & Politics
This post, written by Siun, originally appeared on FireDogLake

On Friday Donald Rumsfeld arrived in France to give a speech - but he had to leave via a back door that went directly into the US Embassy and then quickly scampered out of the country. Why? He was afraid French prosecutors would act on an indictment brought by the Center for Constitutional Rights, the International Federation for Human Rights and several other NGOs.
The criminal complaint states that because of the failure of authorities in the United States and Iraq to launch any independent investigation into the responsibility of Rumsfeld and other high-level U.S. officials for torture despite a documented paper trail and government memos implicating them in direct as well as command responsibility for torture - and because the U.S. has refused to join the International Criminal Court - it is the legal obligation of states such as France to take up the case.
In this case, charges are brought under the 1984 Convention against Torture, ratified by both the United States and France, which has been used in France in previous torture cases.
While Rumsfeld had apparently gotten out of France before an arrest, the case can be prosecuted since he was in the country when it was filed. As Larry Johnson notes:
One thing is certain, Rummy is now part of an exclusive but growing club of Amcits who face legal peril in foreign lands because they participated (allegedly) in some kind of torture, disappearance, or other violation of international human rights. That means he won't be going on any foreign junkets. Once outside the safe confines of the United States he can be snatched up and hauled off to France to face questioning.
You can listen to an interview with the attorney's bringing the charge at Democracy Now and follow the case at the site for the International Federation for Human Rights. CCR is asking everyone to fax or call the French prosecutors and ask them to bring Rummy to justice - please take a minute to do so.

While Rumsfeld was playing hide and seek with French law, children in Iraq are not playing at all - in fact, this week the UN news service IRIN reported that children are being held in Iraqi prisons - and they too are being tortured:

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