A Funny Thing Happened on the way to The Hague
If a genocide narrative collapses, does anyone hear it?
By Michael Melanson
On Sept. 14, in Edmonton, a funny thing happened on the way to The Hague. During the inaugural National Gathering on Unmarked Graves, Dr Chile Eboe-Osuji; former president and judge of the International Criminal Court in The Hague, informed the audience that “There is no pathway to the International Criminal Court for the situation of the historical Indian residential school system in Canada.”
In other words, Canada wasn't going to be facing prosecution for genocide against the native population. This probably should have been bigger news than it was.
The primary reason given was that since the Rome Statute, of which Canada is a signatory, no events occurring prior to 2002 can be criminally prosecuted as genocide. Even if the Rome Statute didn't exist, the case of a Canadian genocide had no chance of being heard in The Hague since the necessary task of proving intent was immediately dismissible (assimilation presupposes continued physical existence). To the meager extent that Canada's accusers have even bothered trying to demonstrate such intent, the most damning evidence they have been able to come up with is a few remarks from the early days after Confederation. Generally the accusers have focused on acts and construed genocide by superficial application of The UN Convention for the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide. The Convention, however, is very clear on the prerequisite of proving intent to reach a conviction for genocide. Basically it is the burden of proving mass murder in the first degree.
The accusers have been operating in an echo chamber and appear to have been completely surprised to learn that Canada isn't about to be standing in the docket at The Hague.
“This is disappointing to hear,” Pine Creek Chief Derek Nepinak remarked on Facebook, “but it’s at least equally important for us to understand that identifying a means to ‘justice’ doesn’t necessarily take us to The ICC at the Hague. Where does that leave us? How do we find justice in the history of the Canada idea.”
Rather than reconsider the validity of their accusation, activists like Nepinak are instead trying to redirect the path to justice, by which he means punishment and reparations. The crime of genocide is proven in their minds and they sought recourse to the ICC as affirmation of their judgment. Given their conspiratorial prejudices, it is doubtful that even an acquittal in The Hague would have been accepted by the accusers. Someone who can convince their self that history's longest running genocide was committed in Canada by priests and nuns is probably someone who can also convince their self that The Hague is gerry-rigged by colonizers anyway.
How does Nepinak et al find justice, then, especially when they haven't bothered with any semblance of due process and their presumption of genocide is itself unjust? Outside of actual prosecution in The Hague, what paths to justice are left except those of vigilantism, insurrection and revolt? Insurgencies are difficult to organize and even harder to sustain. Further asymmetrical and individual acts of retribution, such as burning churches, are likely and considering the pretext of a genocide against women and children, anything short of being punished in kind should be considered a mercy.
The first axiom of atrocity propaganda is: Barbarism always draws on precedence, even if it has to invent it.
Thanks for reading. For more from Michael Melanson read When Killers Are Victims, Too - by Woke Watch Canada (substack.com)