Washington’s Blog – by Carl Herman
“The basis for the United States’ use of force… is, therefore, the Article 51 right of individual or collective self-defense.” – Operational Law Handbook 2012, Judge Advocate General’s Legal Center & School, page 6.
The US Army’s official law handbook provides an excellent historical and legal summary of when wars are lawful self-defense and unlawful War of Aggression in a seven-page Chapter One.
Importantly, after accurately defining “self-defense” in war, the JAG authors/attorneys explicitly state on page 6 that war is illegal unless a nation is under attack from another nation’s government, or can provide evidence of imminent threat of such attack:
“Anticipatory self-defense, whether labeled anticipatory or preemptive, must be distinguished from preventive self-defense. Preventive self-defense—employed to counter non-imminent threats—is illegal under international law.”
As many in alternative media have reported for years, the US was not attacked on 9/11 by another nation’s government, and the US explicitly stated they had no evidence of any imminent threat of attack. Indeed, all “reasons” for US wars are now known to be lies known to false as they were told, and disclosed by official US government agencies’ official documents.
However, despite the US Army’s law handbook’s accurate disclosure of the legal meaning of “self-defense” in war, they then ignore this meaning to claim “self-defense” as a lawful reason for US wars!
The evidence the JAG attorneys cite on page 6 is United Nations Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 1368. The handbook reads:
“This resolution explicitly recognized the United States’ inherent right of individual or collective self-defense pursuant to Article 51 of the UN Charter against the terrorist actors who perpetrated the 9/11 attacks.”
UNSCR 1368 and 1373, both from September, 2001, only call for international cooperation through lawful means for bringing the 9/11 criminals to justice, and remind in the very first sentence of the lawful limits of force within the UN Charter. These two documents will take about 5 minutes to read.
Importantly, JAG’s official US military legal handbook also omits the active treaty (page 466 “Renunciation of War”) of the Kellogg-Briand Pact, that states:
The High Contracting Parties solemly declare in the names of their respective peoples that they condemn recourse to war for the solution of international controversies, and renounce it, as an instrument of national policy in their relations with one another.
The High Contracting Parties agree that the settlement or solution of all disputes or conflicts of whatever nature or of whatever origin they may be, which may arise among them, shall never be sought except by pacific means.”
Under Article Six of the US Constitution, a treaty is our “supreme Law of the Land;” meaning that no order can compromise a US active treaty.
Therefore, the US military’s legal handbook provides the evidence that current US wars are illegal Wars of Aggression because they are so-called “preventative self-defense”: wars of choice without attack by another nation or any imminent threat.
Their defense of listing a UNSCR that in no way authorizes use of force and merely reminds the public of the existence of the UN Charter limits to prevent use of force, then claiming “self-defense” against the meaning of the UN Charter and legal definition of “self-defense” they admit they accept, seems to mean that JAG claims “self-defense” can mean whatever they say it means when they say it.
This “legal claim” to say/dictate/dictatorship “self-defense” when the facts are not even close to the meaning of the word is the opposite of US government letter and intent of limited government under the US Constitution.
The JAG handbook also lists UNSCRs after the US armed attacks, invasion, and occupation of Afghanistan as evidence that US war on that area was somehow lawful despite no legal justification or UN authorization before US armed attacks.
This is similar to another city attacking your city, claiming “self-defense” because they say you have a “terrorist” in your city, despite your city’s offer to arrest anyone of any crime upon receiving evidence of guilt. The other city refuses to provide evidence, and attacks you (full analogies here, here, here).
US current wars are not even close to lawful.
They can be resolved with arrests of complicit US political, military, and corporate media “leaders” who lied/lie for these wars that kill millions, harm billions, and loot trillions of Americans’ tax dollars (resolution details here).
The fact that developed nations’ political and media “leadership” are complicit to allow this fundamental perversion of law is also a necessary broad-context issue to resolve through arrests, and begs the question: who/what is coordinating this Orwellian and psychopathic lust for wars?
Americans would never allow a favorite sport to be destroyed under such Orwellian lies of the laws/rules. We can stop unlawful wars by being responsible to know and defend war law as passionately as we know and defend our favorite sports, as many of us with Oaths to the US Constitution are honor-bound to do:
There are no lawful orders for unlawful wars.
Americans and global citizens have an opening now to have the intellectual integrity and moral courage to defend the sacrifices of all our families through two world wars:
War/armed attack is illegal except under a narrow and precise definition of self-defense that US wars are not even close to meeting.
Think, speak, and act for Truth in this, and all areas your heart and mind call to you.
One thought on “US military legal argument for current wars: ‘Self-defense’ is whatever we say”
I have the age old question, used to be called conspiracy theory, tin foil hat, etc.
Who is “we?”
We The People will be needing a detailed list who declared war?
Otherwise, and I don’t think i’d be wrong speaking for We The People, but, we don’t consent to that.
Because we the people need to know who is making those decisions that 800 sorties need to fly and for what reasons.
Otherwise how can they have informed consent?
and don’t consent.