This publication presents a subject that is, unfortunately, as significant today as it was two years ago. Sadly, this continuing relevance seems to confirm the views of the German radical pacifist Kurt Tucholsky, who stated in response to the atrocities and sufferings of WWI: “But men never ever learnt from history, and they will not do so in the future. Hic Rhodus!” Recent events in Iraq, the Middle East, East Timor or the Democratic Republic of Congo, and possible links regarding issues of terrorism, raise the question what criminological and victimological research offers in assisting to break vicious spirals of ignorance of gross human rights violations and the immense human sufferings in the context of armed conflicts and terrorism. The answer to this question still remains open. Yet, this publication confirms the substantial willingness to ‘learn’ from the past by critically reviewing large-scale victimisation arising out of protracted conflicts in order to better understanding the necessary prerequisites for enduring peace-making in post-conflict societies and to anticipate and suggest approaches to healing victimising effects.
This book presents a compilation of presentations to the Advanced Research Workshop (ARW) on “Large-Scale Victimisation due to Protracted Conflicts as a Potential Source of Terrorist Activities – Importance of Regaining Security in Post-Conflict Societies,” which was held in September 2004. The authors deal with a subject that is, unfortunately, as significant today as it was two years ago. Sadly, this continuing relevance seems to confirm the views of the German radical pacifist Kurt Tucholsky, who stated in response to the atrocities and sufferings of WWI: “But men never ever learnt from history, and they will not do so in the future. Hic Rhodus! ”
Kurt Tucholsky, 'Vorwärts -!', Glossen und Essays, Gesammelte Schriften (1907–1935), Die Weltbühne, 05.01.1926, Nr. 1, p. 1. (1926). Original quotation: »Denn noch niemals haben Menschen aus der Geschichte gelernt, und sie werden es auch in Zukunft nicht tun. Hic Rhodus!« (translated by editors).
Recent events in Iraq, the Middle East, East Timor or the Democratic Republic of Congo, and possible links regarding issues of terrorism, raise the question what criminological and victimological research offers in assisting to break vicious spirals of ignorance of gross human rights violations and the immense human sufferings in the context of armed conflicts and terrorism.
We are afraid that the answer to this question still remains open. Yet, the spirit and the result of the workshop confirm the substantial willingness to 'learn' from the past by critically reviewing large-scale victimisation arising out of protracted conflicts in order to better understanding the necessary prerequisites for enduring peace-making in post-conflict societies and to anticipate and suggest approaches to healing victimising effects.
From the outset, the notion of an open approach to the topic of the workshop was strongly supported by Mr. Carvalho Rodrigues, the Nato Programme Director, Security-Related Civil Science & Technology. Ultimately, funding for the ARW project was generously provided by the Nato Programme. This allowed the workshop to be organised at the University of Zagreb together with the Max Planck Institute for Foreign and International Criminal Law, Freiburg, i.Br., Germany.
The contributions contained in the book cover a wide variety of approaches to large-scale victimisation in armed conflicts and post-conflict societies from different academic and applied disciplines. However, one of the interesting discoveries at the workshop was how closely related all these different perspectives were and that the future discourse on large-scale victimisation should overcome the divide between the various concepts and approaches in order to provide more holistic, and therefore more effective, proposals.
It is now up to the academic community, the field of applied human rights work, international criminal justice and the interested public at large, to digest and reflect on the observations made by the contributions presented in this book, particularly insofar as they identify possible solutions and the need for further research on issues related to large-scale victimisation.
In any case, addressing these issues appears essential in enhancing learning in the field of large-scale victimisation and preventing further massive suffering.
Terrorist victimization is a matter of significant concern in the age of “mass terror”. The dimensions of terrorist victimization are explored in this article through the consideration of the target audiences of terrorism, the characteristics of terrorist victims, the symptoms experienced by victims, the nature of focused and indiscriminate terrorist victimization, the rights of victims and the services that focus on supporting victims of terrorism.
Large–scale indiscriminate violence has become the reality of contemporary terrorism. Terrorism is becoming a method of combat in which random or symbolic victims serve as an instrumental target. International law has no definitions of terrorism. The statement “one man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter” is rather widespread and accepted. Victims of international terrorism are, as a rule, innocent victims, mass/collective victims, political victims and victims of crime and abuse of power. Some states are using terrorist organizations or individuals to promote state interests. The terrorists' secret weapon is suicide terrorism. No society can protect all its members from terrorist attacks, but all societies can reduce the risk of becoming the victim of terrorist attacks. Terrorism is a threat to fundamental human rights all over the world. As such it is negation of human rights concepts. This deals with obstacles in the human rights development process caused by present and/or potential acts of terrorism. Human rights concepts should not be understood in the narrow sense, namely only as a set of procedural safeguards for those suspected of terrorism, but also as a requirement for respecting the basic human rights of those affected by terrorist crimes. Some states are producing threats to civil liberties in three areas: government efforts to control debate and limit access to information, the incarceration of large numbers of people in a very troubling manner, and the rushed passage of an anti-terrorism bill. There are some myths and generalizations on terrorism. Are we facing a clash of civilizations along the lines Samuel Huntington (1) predicted? Some conclusions: it is necessary to de-legitimate terrorism, to fight the cult of martyrdom, to develop effective responses to terrorism, to facilitate inter-religious dialogue, to reduce vulnerability to future attacks, to improve the role of law and the International Criminal Court in the war against international terrorism.
Post-conflict societies pose grave risks as regards reoccurrence and escalation of violence, in particular terrorist violence. Iraq as well as other regions provide ample evidence of this trend. The text summarizes the characteristics of post-conflict societies and identifies the challenges associated with the aftermath of large-scale violence. At the centre of such challenges we find trust and security. Trust is in short supply in post-conflict societies, as is security. In order to re-establish security and trust, a state must have a justice system to deal with atrocities of the past and an economy that replaces war-time economies and markets as well as a functioning civil society.
This article discusses what victimology has to offer in the fight against terrorism and how victimology can benefit from the study of terrorism and large-scale victimization in general. First, the author offers reasons for studying terrorism from a victimological perspective, then attempts to devise a proper role for victimology in the study of terrorism and finally demonstrates that terrorism, although essentially a crime, requires and at the same time proves that victimology should deal with victimization in the broad sense and consequently should establish itself as an independent discipline distinct from criminology.
Other than in criminology and the penal system, victimology still awaits due attention within the social sciences and political theory. This is all the more astonishing since its political relevance is evident and mirrored by complex semantics. Within the political realm sacrifices for certain values are demanded – from the relinquishment of claims in favour of a balanced national budget to sacrificing one's life in wartime – whereas elsewhere there is talk of victims of welfare state redistribution, social discrimination and crime as well as of armed conflict.
Therefore, these political semantics are an obvious place for examining in more detail the strategic functions they serve.
The observations below partly follow those in Herfried Münkler / Karsten Fischer: “Nothing to kill or die for…” - Überlegungen zu einer politischen Theorie des Opfers, in: Leviathan. Zeitschrift für Sozialwissenschaft, Vol. 28 (2000), 343-362. I thank Christina Gingelmaier for valuable comments and suggestions.
For this purpose a typology of sacrification and victimization respectively is drawn up first (part I), from where their socio-political meanings can be differentiated and shifts in those meanings diagnosed (part II).
Also, I will show that the politico-rhetorical positioning between sacrification and victimization is of crucial importance for the semantic settlement of political disputes, while self-description clearly differs from outside perceptions. From here, the political implications of sacrification and victimization discourses in post-heroic
Herfried Münkler: The New Wars, Cambridge/Malden 2005; Edward N. Luttwak: A Post-Heroic Military Policy, in: Foreign Affairs, Vol. 75, 2004, No. 4, 33–44.
War is a ubiquitous phenomenon. The magnitude of war-faring has grown significantly since the end of World War II and so has the number of people killed and atrocities committed. Consequently more and more people are victimized due to the incidence of war and the high amount of violence connected to war-faring. Although war victims are the primary source of answers to open questions related to war, science has not taken very much notice of them. This article refers to some preconditions that have to be met in order to start an inquiry into war victimization and therefore in order to understand the structures of war. Possible fields of application are discussed and related problems are brought to attention.
The events of September 11, 2001 and the onset of the “war on terrorism” have focused scholarly attention on terrorism as a concept , a discourse , and a form of crime and victimization . In the past, criminological theories have typically addressed terrorism as a form of political crime . Terrorists were defined as “convictional criminals”  and terrorism as a type of political violence employed to bring about social change . Recent discussions on terrorism refer to it as an international “hate crime”  and distinguish between revolutionary, religious and nationalist types/causes of terrorism. Scholars discuss the origin of terrorism (e.g. state vs. political), the qualities of political terrorism and the degree of application . Victimology, which has primarily focused on harm resulting from law violations within a specific legal system, eschewed the analysis of victimization ensuing from terrorist acts that challenge the legitimacy of a socio-legal system.I Thus, there is little victimological research on victims of terrorism.
Using Israel as a case study, this article attempts to fill this gap. It explores the application of victimological/criminological concepts and theories to explain recent trends and patterns of victimization related to terrorism. Since September 29, 2000, which marks the onset of the second intifada (uprising) in Israel, the country has experienced increased levels of mass victimization as a result of intensive terrorist activities.
This article will address three aspects of the phenomenon. First, it presents the competition over the status of victim in the framework of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, which has been impacted by the outbursts of terrorism. Second, it describes the mass victimization or, in the words of Ewald and von Oppeln , the “inventory of suffering” in Israel over the past four years. Third, it endeavours to apply a theoretical framework and concepts of Victimology/criminology to explain victimization patterns and fluctuations. The article concludes with suggestions for directions in studying mass victimization due to protracted war.
The concept of the self-traumatized perpetrator emerged in the United States in the 1970s, in response to moral confusion associated with the Vietnam War. By the 1980s, self-traumatized perpetrators composed a clinical sub-population of American veterans diagnosed with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and were the subject of psychological, psychophysiological, and epidemiological research. The self-traumatized perpetrator is distinguished from other cases of PTSD in that he is said to be the psychological victim of his own violence and unlawful behaviour. The self-traumatized perpetrator is an example of a psychiatric disorder that emerges within an 'ecological niche' formed by discrete historical conditions, political interests, and widespread concern regarding national social identity. When this ecological niche disappears, so does the diagnostic entity – in this case, the self-traumatized perpetrator – as a recognized medical, forensic, and cultural phenomenon. This chapter outlines the history of the self-traumatized perpetrator from its beginning in post-Vietnam America to its puzzling after-life in present-day Iraq.
There are many indications that various aspects and factors of large-scale war victimization could be made visible through the collection and analysis of data on organized crime in post-conflict societies. War victimization could be understood as an outcome of opportunistic criminal activity: war conditions offer a unique opportunity to criminals and criminal groups (especially those involved in military or paramilitary formations) not only to restrain their destructive personal potential, but also to attain a new identity as 'national heroes' and to gain a significantly better economic position through advantageous 'investments' in post-war criminal business. Crimes in war as well as war crimes, often perceived as basically launched by nationalistic ('blood and belonging') ideology, could be examined in a broader hypothetical framework: nationalist ideologies should be considered not only as the motivation but also as the means. By identifying themselves primarily as members of a specific nation who 'defend' (or victimize) a specific ethnic group, criminals of war provide not only the legitimization of crimes against other nations/ethnic groups, but also of crimes against (primarily political) opponents within their own ethnic group.
The main aim of this paper is to argue for the research of the continuity of organized criminal activity before, during and after ethnic conflicts in the former Yugoslavia. This kind of research is argued to be a promising tool for the assessment of links between war and organized crime victimization as a way of gaining a more comprehensive picture of the recent past. Research findings may further be used as the basis for the creation of comprehensive regional security strategies.
Some of the theories most frequently used to try and explain the appearance and development of political and terrorist violence argue that social deprivation, ethnic discrimination or religious intolerance and suppression, trigger oppressed groups into using political violence, believing that it is the only way to be heard on a political level and to gain more decision-making influence. Following this theoretical concept, it seems justified to argue that large-scale victimization, combined with perceived injustice in past conflicts, could potentially be a source of political violence and terrorism in the future. Furthermore, victimization and victim narratives passed on from one generation to the other obviously play a major role, both in interpreting history and in justifying terrorist violence. Yet, is victimization actually one of the root causes of terrorism, or is it just another convenient excuse for practicing violence? Research aimed at answering this question by looking closely at the relevant criminological characteristics of two very similar phenomena, hate crimes and terrorism, could provide highly useful information which would increase our understanding of how ethnic hatred develops and fosters the dilemma of ethnic security, while remaining a constant threat for security, especially in post-conflict societies.
In the XXI century, issues such as peace and war, conflict and co-operation, sovereignty and intervention or the responsibility to protect, remain as significant as ever. From Thucydides to Hobbes or Rousseau philosophers have analysed these critical issues and had similar dilemmas to nowadays. Over thirty-five different conflicts are going on at present. Armies or rebel groups attack civilians and commit heinous crimes. All too often, the alleged perpetrators of those crimes are not punished by national courts. The international perception is that such crimes constitute a threat to international peace and security. “Determined to put an end to impunity for the perpetrators of those crimes and thus to contribute to the prevention of such crimes”,II the international community established the International Criminal Court (hereinafter “ICC”) with jurisdiction to investigate and prosecute genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity committed since 1 July 2002. The International Criminal Court is a reality today thanks to the impressive synergy that was created before, during and after the Rome Conference by different actors: the states, the United Nations Secretariat, regional organisations, the International Committee of the Red Cross and international civil society. Through our joint efforts the rule of law prevailed over force. Yet, it is important to understand that the ICC is only one, albeit important, cog in the wheel of international justice and that every state still has the duty to investigate and try those crimes. It is critically important to understand that the ICC is only a last resort so that expectations remain realistic and responsibilities are shared. Very significantly, the rights of the victims before an international tribunal were recognised for the first time in the Rome Statute.
Large-scale victimization due to armed conflicts is more often than not related to acts that constitute international crimes (which for the purpose of this paper refer to war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide). From the perspective of international criminal law (ICL), due to legal and practical limitations, large-scale victimization will necessarily have to be accounted for selectively, and in small-scale trials. This raises critical issues of legitimacy and representativeness at different levels.
First, at the broadest level, a situation will have to be selected from the universe of potential situations of international concern around the world. Then cases consisting of particular offences and accused within the situation shall be selected. Finally, a selection of the means of evidence by which to investigate and prove those cases will take place.
Issues specific to each of these levels need to be discussed in order to define the most objective and reliable criteria for selecting (in this order) situations, cases and means of evidence, so as to optimize the representativeness of the proceedings vis-à-vis the broader reality of large-scale victimization. The credibility and legitimacy of international justice will be determined to a large extent by their real or perceived ability to represent in a fair and objective way the realities of large-scale victimization.
Horrendous man-made mass sufferings, like widespread killings, torture, rape or expulsion, although empirically easy to recognise, 'encounter' a selective and in many respects unpredictable process of official acknowledgement in international politics and judiciary. However, finding the proper means with which to respond effectively to large-scale victimisation (LSV) requires universal recognition of gross human rights violations. Understanding LSV as a social construct 'produced' at various institutions by decision-making actors can help to facilitate an unbiased approach to preventing mass suffering. International criminal justice (ICJ) plays a key-role in this process of determining dimensions of criminal large-scale victimisation.
This paper attempts to shed some light on the underlying dimensions of this judicial construction process resulting in patterns of criminal LSV. For the sake of a more complex understanding, criminal LSV is considered in the context of global governance and is then related to the – narrower – concept of the purpose and goals of international criminal justice. On this basis some dimensions and emerging patterns of criminal LSV within the ICTY-jurisprudence are then discussed within the prosecutorial and adjudicative construction process. Finally, some issues for further research into humanitarian victimology will be identified in light of the perspective developed.
This paper will give an introduction to the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY), and will provide an outline and description of the work of the Victims and Witnesses Section (VWS) of the ICTY, in particular, the work of the Support Unit.
The views expressed herein are those of the author alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the ICTY or the United Nations.
Though the world largely ignored the proceedings, an in absentia trial of Khmer Rouge leaders was held in Phnom Penh in 1979. Cold War politics thwarted international recognition of the tribunal then and subsequently. This shortcoming is consistent with failure to give primacy to victims' interests in the development of international human rights law. Finally, “disproportionate revenge” as a Cambodian cultural model fails to explain adequately the nature and scale of Khmer Rouge killing.
Elmar G.M. Weitekamp, Stephan Parmentier, Kris Vanspauwen, Marta Valiñas, Roel Gerits
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In this chapter we examine post-conflict situations and how countries dealt with them. We identified four building blocks which seem to be essential for post-conflict justice: truth, accountability, reparation and reconciliation. After that we describe restorative justice mechanisms and their promises by examining them in the context of truth, accountability, reparation and reconciliation in the context of victim-offender relationship and stakeholders involved in the conflict. Finally we refer to the restorative regulation pyramid as introduced by Braithwaite and compare his pyramid with the Bougainville Style peace building pyramid by Howley before introducing our own pyramid which is a combination of Braithwaite's and Howley's ideas.
Collective violence is a critical concern worldwide. This article explores how the recent changes in the nature of conflicts – having evolved from the classic “Clausewitzian” to what is called “identity conflicts” – bring to the fore psychosocial community and individual issues that had never been seen before the Cold War. We shall see how humanitarian assistance in complex emergencies brings us a wealth of information and experience in the field of collective psychological trauma and victimization. A strict notion of “mental health” which is derived from a strictly Western based medical model, has evolved into a “psychosocial” view that empowers whole communities to explore their traditional resources and values as well as their resilience in the face of protracted conflict.
In an effort to move beyond the impasse between defenders of the notion of sovereignty and advocates of a new norm of humanitarian intervention, the International Commission on Intervention and State Sovereignty sought to develop concepts that could bridge these apparently contradictory positions. The ICISS argued that states held a special, primary responsibility to protect the rights and safety of all of their citizens. Should a state be unable or unwilling to meet its responsibility, according to the ICISS' argument, this task then would shift to the international community, which would need to show that generally agreed criteria existed to justify such intervention. This chapter examines the practical benefits and challenges – political, economic, military and other – of trying to implement the conflict management and peace building agenda set out by the ICISS report for the international community in a time when smaller states are fearful, perhaps justifiably, that such an agenda could also be abused by powerful states looking to disguise narrowly self-interested intervention in other countries' affairs with claims of broader international legitimacy in pursuing a “war on terrorism”.
Post-conflict societies are at a crossroads: their recovery must start fast or they face a serious risk of re-emergence of conflict. Post-conflict peace-building, the setting up of institutions and especially the establishment of the rule of law prevent conflicts from re-emerging and possibly from being transformed into local terrorism; they also prevent states from collapsing and becoming a safe heaven for international terrorist groups. Attention devoted to the fight against terrorism should result in the allocation of more resources and an improved organizational framework for these activities. The needs of post-conflict societies are qualitatively different from those of stable societies, and the Bretton Woods institutions' criteria and conditions for obtaining resources do not seem suitable. Immediately after the conflict, economic rationality has to be balanced with the social preconditions of a sustainable peace. If peace-building operations continue to expand, the Security Council will have to share the burden with other UN bodies more suited to this particular task – perhaps with an adequately reformed Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), or the resurrected and radically transformed Trusteeship Council.
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