link to Prof. Stein's home page
link to ISS 325 War and Revolution sylabus
link to PLS 364 International Organization sylabus
link to PLS 461 Refugees sylabus
WAR CRIMES page
ISS 325 War & Revolution pages:
link to War & Revolution photo page
link to AGGRESSION page
link to ARMS CONTROL & DISARMAMENT page
link to PROTRACTED INTERNAL WAR page
link to REVOLUTION & INTERNAL CONFLICT page
link to WAR & INTERNAL CONFLICT page
link to Terrorism and Counter-Terrorism page

PLS 364 International Organizations & Cooperation pages:
link to UNITED NATIONS & International Organizations page
*link to War Crimes page

PLS 461 Refugees, Displaced Persons, Exiles pages:
link to Refugees, DPs, Exiles photo page


WAR CRIMES & GENOCIDE
PLS 364


 #bosnia
 #cambodia
 #burundi
 #afghanistan
 #rwanda
 #nanking
 #iraq


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BOSNIA-HERZEGOVINA
October 12, 1998
  BOSNIA'S BIGGEST MASS GRAVE EXHUMED
  Victims are believed to come from local villages
  Teams of forensic experts have finished exhuming the mass grave found last week near the town of Zvornik in eastern Bosnia-Hercegovina.
  They say it is the biggest discovered in the country, containing the bodies of 274 victims. The bodies are now being transported to Tuzla for identification.
  Officials say the victims - some of whom were found in plastic bags bearing the insignia of the Yugoslav army - appear to have been local Muslim civilians.
  They are believed to have been killed in 1992 when Bosnian Serb forces were carrying out a brutal policy of ethnic cleansing.
Since 1996 around 1,800 bodies have been recovered from mass graves in the area but few have been identified.
  Smaller graves nearby
  Officials said on Sunday the newly found mass grave, located a few hundred metres outside the village of Glumina, is 51 metres long and nine metres wide.
  Amor Masovic, head of the Missing Persons Commission, said some victims were handcuffed, indicating that they had been detained and then executed.
  The area, part of Bosnia's post-war Serb republic, is now populated almost entirely by Serbs, some of them refugees from Sarajevo or other federation areas dominated by Muslims.
  Mr Masovic earlier said he believed there were other smaller graves nearby and that his team would start work there soon. He said there were still 1,500 persons from the area reported missing.
  The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) says that altogether nearly 20,000 people are unaccounted for from the brutal three-year conflict.
 



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CAMBODIA


 In a grisly museum in Tuol Sleng,  the Khmer Rouge prison in Phnom Penh, piles of prisoners' clothes recall Cambodians who were stripped and trucked out of the capital to be executed in the killing fields in the 1970's.
 
 



SORRY IN CAMBODIA

  Defecting Khmer Rouge Leaders Khieu Samphan [L] and Nuon Chea [R] listen to questions at a news conference on Tuesday.  They said they were sorry for helping to engineer a genocide that killed as many as two million of their countrymen in the 1970's.

        "Yes, sorry, very sorry," Khieu Samphan said, looking red and sullen. "We would like to apologize and ask our compatriots to forget the past so our nation can concentrate on the future.  Let bygones be bygones."
 
 
 
 


July 21, 1998

  CAMBODIA'S TROUBLED HISTORY

  Cambodia's recent history has been violent and its politics complex. Hundreds of thousands of people met their deaths in war, and in the killing fields of one of the most murderous regimes of the 20th century. Below is News online's guide to the turbulent history of the last 50 years:
  Cambodia attained full independence from France in 1953. Prince Norodom Sihanouk was elected head of state in 1960.
  From 1964, the government faced an underground Marxist insurgent movement, the Khmer Rouge.
  Prince Sihanouk was deposed in a right-wing coup in 1970 led by Lt-Gen Lon Nol, whose government pledged to remove foreign communist forces and appealed to the United States, engaged in the war in neighbouring Vietnam, for military aid.
  The prince left the country and formed a government in exile, which was supported by the Khmer Rouge. In 1972 Lon Nol was elected president of a newly-proclaimed Khmer Republic, but his government's control became limited to a few enclaves.
  The Khmer Rouge
  Forces loyal to Prince Sihanouk, mainly comprising Khmer Rouge fighters, gained control of Phnom Penh in April 1975.
  Cambodia was renamed Democratic Kampuchea and, under the Khmer Rouge, the country was subjected to a radical attempt at social re-engineering. Towns were evacuated, intellectuals were rounded up and killed and the rest of the population was subjected to forced labour in the countryside.
  More than a million people died from torture, disease and starvation.
  In 1977, it was officially acknowledged that the country was being run by the Communist Party of Kampuchea, led by Pol Pot. Prince Sihanouk had been placed under house arrest.
  Vietnamese invasion
  After a campaign of cross-border raids by the Khmer Rouge into Vietnam, the Vietnamese army launched an invasion of Cambodia in 1978, capturing Phnom Penh in January 1979.
  Under Heng Samrin, a People's Revolutionary Council pledged to restore basic freedoms, and the country was renamed again, as the People's Republic of Kampuchea.
  But the Khmer Rouge remained active, especially in the west of the country, near the Thai border. The Vietnam-backed Phnom Penh government sentenced Pol Pot to death in absentia, saying he was responsible for the deaths of three million people.
  Vietnam launched offensives against a coalition of anti-Vietnamese resistance groups formed in 1982 by Prince Sihanouk, his son Prince Norodom Ranariddh and former premier Son Sann. These had the backing of the Chinese government. Thousands of Cambodian refugees fled into Thailand.
  Peace talks
  In 1987, as a result of international diplomatic pressure, in particular from the Soviet Union and China, Prince Sihanouk met Hun Sen, chairman of the council of ministers in Heng Samrin's Phnom Penh government, in Paris.
  A series of subsequent meetings resulted in the withdrawal of Vietnamese forces from Cambodia in 1989.
  It was agreed to change the name of the country back to Cambodia, introduce a new flag and reintroduce Buddhism as the state religion.
  But fighting continued between forces of the resistance coalition, led by Prince Sihanouk, and the Phnom-Penh government.
  In 1990 the UN Security Council endorsed a framework for a comprehensive peace settlement in Cambodia, with a UN supervised interim government and free elections.
  Cambodian factions signed the UN peace accord in Paris in October 1991. Prince Sihanouk returned to Phnom-Penh later that year.
  A United Nations Transitional Authority of Cambodia (UNTAC) began operating in 1992. It was rejected by the Khmer Rouge, who launched attacks on its operations.
  Elections under the UN
  The Khmer Rouge also boycotted UN-supervised general elections in May 1993 which brought Hun Sen and Prince Ranariddh as co-prime ministers into an uneasy coalition government.
  Prince Ranariddh accused Hun Sen of going back on a power-sharing agreement as Hun Sen's Cambodian People's Party took the upper hand in government. Hun Sen in turn accused Prince Ranariddh of building up a guerrilla force with defecting Khmer Rouge rebels.
  He surrounded Prince Ranariddh's military bases and, following fighting in the capital, Prince Ranariddh left Cambodia for France in July 1997, accusing Hun Sen of staging a coup.
  The government in Phnom Penh sentenced Prince Ranariddh to imprisonment in his absence in 1998 on charges of plotting to overthrow the government with the help of the Khmer Rouge, charges which he denied.
  He was pardoned by his father, King Sihanouk, and returned to Cambodia in May 1998.
  In the jungle of northern Cambodia, Pol Pot was denounced by his former Khmer Rouge comrades in a show trial in July 1997, and sentenced to house arrest for life.
  He died in April 1998. Film footage of his cremation was shown around the world
 


 
 
 
 
 



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 BURUNDI

November 11, 1998

  MASSACRE IN BURUNDI
  Violence has devastated the entire region in recent years
  Details are emerging from Burundi of the killing by government soldiers last week of about 100 people - apparently in retaliation for a raid by Hutu rebels on a camp for displaced Tutsis.
  Witnesses said the soldiers attacked villages around the camp at Maramvya east of the capital, Bujumbura, during their search for the rebels who had killed five Tutsis and stolen cattle at the end of last month.
  THE ARMY IS PREDOMINANTLY MADE UP OF MEMBERS OF THE TUTSI MINORITY, WHICH ACCOUNTS FOR LESS THAN 15% OF BURUNDI'S POPULATION OF SIX MILLION.
  Hutu rebels are fighting to topple the military government of Pierre Buyoya, a Tutsi.
  "They burned many houses and killed 70 persons, most of them were children and women," said one.
  Others, refusing to be identified, said more than 100 were killed.
  The local administrator has confirmed that dozens of villagers were killed - including women and children. A military spokesman in Bujumbura said it appeared that some civilians had been killed but refused to comment on who was to blame.
  Peace talks
  BBC Africa reporter Jane Hawley said the INCIDENT IS THE BLOODIEST TO BE REPORTED IN THE CIVIL WAR IN BURUNDI SINCE PEACE TALKS BEGAN LAST JUNE.
  MORE THAN 200,000 PEOPLE HAVE BEEN KILLED IN ETHNIC VIOLENCE IN BURUNDI SINCE 1993 WHEN TUTSI SOLDIERS ASSASSINATED THE COUNTRY'S FIRST ELECTED HUTU PRESIDENT, MELCHIOR NDADAYE.
  A peace process was launched in June, under the mediation of the former Tanzanian President, Julius Nyerere to try to halt the vicious cycle of violence.
  Three rounds of talks have now been held in the northern Tanzanian town of Arusha. But a ceasefire agreed in Arusha in the summer has not been implemented.
 
 



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AFGHANISTAN
September 3, 1998
  Amnesty accuses Taleban of mass murder
  Taleban fighters on the front line
  The human rights organisation, Amnesty International, has accused Afghanistan's Taleban movement of systematically killing thousands of ethnic Hazara civilians in northern Afghanistan.
  In a report issued on Thursday, Amnesty said the killings occurred in the three days immediately following the Taleban's capture of the northern city of Mazar-e-Sharif on 8 August.
  Amnesty says its information is based on testimony from witnesses and surviving members of the victims' families.
  Correspondents say there have been persistent but unconfirmed reports of reprisal killings by the Taleban of ethnic Hazaras who had supported the Afghan opposition in the first few days after the capture of the city.
  Taleban officials deny all the reports and say the Amnesty report is based on propaganda by the purist Islamic militia's enemies.
  The Taleban maintain that all Hazaras who died were killed in fighting for control of the city.
  Iranian diplomats "buried in mass grave"
  The Amnesty report also says that a group of Iranian diplomats who disappeared in Mazar-e-Zarif were reportedly killed and their bodies buried in a mass grave.
  It quotes eyewitnesses as saying that their bodies were left in the consulate for two days before being buried in a mass grave at a girls' school.
  Taleban authorities have denied having any information about the whereabouts of the diplomats.
  The Taleban leader, Mullah Omar, previously told the BBC that the diplomats may have been killed by Taleban soldiers without the leadership's knowledge.
  Taleban authorities have released five other Iranian prisoners, who were arrested when Mazar-e-Zarif was captured, and they have arrived in the Pakistani capital Islamabad.
  Their release followed negotiations involving the Taleban and Pakistani and Iranian diplomats.
  Iran has welcomed the move, but continues to demand the safe return of a further 45 Iranians that it says the Taleban are still holding - including the 10 diplomats who Iran says it believes are still alive.
  Eyewitnesses report atrocities
  The Amnesty International report follows a series of allegations that the largely Pashtoon Taleban have targeted the Shi'ite Hazara community in the city.
  The organisation says that new information from eyewitnesses and relatives of victims suggests that the majority of the killings were carried out in three areas of Mazar - Zara'at, Saidabad and Elm Arab.
  According to eyewitnesses, Taleban guards ordered ethnic Hazaras to stay indoors and then entered their houses one by one, killing older men and children and taking away young men.
  Other Hazara victims, allegedly including women, children and elderly people, were reportedly killed deliberately and arbitrarily on the streets, as they tried to flee the city.
  Amnesty says that in one incident prisoners were reportedly executed in front of local villagers

#top
RWANDA 1994
Wreaths serve as a small
              memorial to 10 Belgian soldiers who were killed by Hutu
              members of the former regime's army in 1994. The
              Belgians were protecting the Rwandan Prime Minister, a
              Tutsi who was also killed. (AP Photo)
 September 3, 1998
  U.N. COURT ISSUES FIRST GUILTY VERDICT FOR GENOCIDE
   By JAMES C. McKINLEY Jr.
  ARUSHA, Tanzania -- A U.N. tribunal investigating mass killings in Rwanda handed down the first guilty verdict by an international court for the crime of genocide Wednesday, and FOR THE FIRST TIME DEFINED RAPE AS A GENOCIDE CRIME.
  The decision, against a small-town mayor, Jean-Paul Akayesu, was the first verdict after a trial by the Rwanda tribunal, which has been plagued by mismanagement and corruption since its inception in 1994.
  The 300-page decision by a three-judge panel, a result of nearly four years of proceedings, marked a pivotal moment in international law and laid the legal groundwork for future prosecutions in U.N. courts. "It gives us a road map of how we are to proceed," the lead prosecutor, Pierre Prosper, said.
  Akayesu, the former mayor of Taba, in central Rwanda, winced once, but then betrayed little emotion as the president of the tribunal, Judge Laity Kama of Senegal, asked him to stand and then pronounced him guilty on 9 of the 15 counts in the indictment.
  Akayesu faces a maximum penalty of life in prison when he is sentenced later this month, court officials said. Nicolas Tiangaye, a lawyer for Akayesu, said his client would appeal the decision to a five-judge chamber at The Hague. "There are some points we can criticize," he said.
  THE JUDGES DISMISSED SEVERAL CHARGES AGAINST AKAYESU THAT HE HAD VIOLATED THE GENEVA CONVENTIONS ON THE TREATMENT OF VICTIMS OF WAR, SAYING HE WAS NOT A MILITARY FIGURE WHO COULD BE HELD ACCOUNTABLE UNDER THOSE TREATIES.
  But the judges ruled that Akayesu, as mayor, was responsible for the killings of more than 2,000 people and the rape of dozens of Tutsi women in Taba after April 19, 1994, even though police officers, soldiers and Hutu militiamen had committed the actual crimes.
  The U.N. Security Council set up the tribunal in November 1994 to prosecute top Rwandan officials for one of worst mass killings in recent history, the slaughter of an estimated 500,000 Tutsi and moderate Hutu during three months in 1994.
  It set up a similar court in The Hague to try war-crimes cases after the Balkans war. While that court initiated a genocide trial, the defendant died this summer before the case could be completed.
  Before Wednesday, the most important victory for prosecutors at the Arusha tribunal came May 1, when former Rwandan Prime Minister Jean Kambanda pleaded guilty to genocide and promised to testify against other defendants. Kambanda, the first person to accept culpability for genocide in an international court, is to be sentenced Friday.
  Genocide was first defined legally in the Genocide Convention, which was adopted in 1948 after the Nuremburg and Tokyo trials.
  The statute setting up the Arusha court allows prosecutors to charge people with violations of the Genocide Convention and with several internationally accepted crimes against humanity -- torture, murder, rape and extermination -- that were first set down in the Nuremburg charter. The tribunal is also empowered to charge defendants with violations of the Geneva Convention on the Treatment of War Victims.
  Judge Kama said the evidence was overwhelming that Akayesu ordered the deaths of several Tutsi intellectuals in his commune, as well as eight Tutsi from another town who had sought refuge in his office.
  The judges also found Akayesu guilty of inciting villagers to commit genocide in an inflammatory speech on April 19, a harangue in which he urged people to eliminate Tutsi civilians.
  The judges said they were also convinced that Akayesu had overseen the torture of several Hutu residents in Taba in an effort to find out where Tutsi residents were hiding.
  Throughout the 17-month trial and the testimony of 42 witnesses, the defense argued that Akayesu had at first tried to protect the Tutsi in his commune, but found that he was powerless to stop the Hutu militiamen, whom he maintained were not under his command.
  Defense lawyers portrayed Akayesu as a victim of circumstances, a decent man who continued to try to save Tutsi until he was forced himself to flee in May 1994. Akayesu lost control of the town to Hutu killers and has been made a scapegoat for massacres he could not prevent, his lawyers said.
  But the judges accepted the prosecution's version.
  Prosper, the prosecutor, argued that Akayesu had first resisted calls to kill Tutsi neighbors but two weeks later succumbed to pressure from hardliners in the Hutu-led government and, after April 19, wholeheartedly joined the effort to exterminate Tutsi civilians.
  The judges also rejected defense arguments, often heard among Hutu apologists in Rwanda, that the massacres were an ugly but unavoidable consequence of the civil war being waged at the time between Tutsi rebels in the north and the Hutu-dominated government and army.
  The evidence proved conclusively a genocide had taken place, as defined under the 1948 Genocide Convention, Judge Kama said. Government officials had planned the killings in advance and overseen them, the judges ruled, and the attackers had killed innocent Tutsi civilians, not combatants, with an eye toward wiping out all Tutsi in the country.
  Judge Kama pointed out that Hutu militiamen had killed women and children, including infants. They often cut the Achilles tendons of their victims to prevent them from escaping before they were murdered.
  "It is clear that the massacres that occurred in Rwanda in 1994 had a specific object, namely the extermination of the Tutsi," the judge said. "It was indeed genocide that was committed in Rwanda in 1994."
  In another important ruling, the court held that the systematic rapes of Tutsi women in Taba also amounted to an act of genocide. The ruling says rape and sexual aggression fall under a clause in the 1948 convention defining genocidal acts as those causing "mental or physical harm to members of a group," lawyers said.
  "In the chamber's opinion, they constitute genocide the same as any other act," Judge Kama said.
  During the trial, several witnesses painted a brutal picture of Akayesu orchestrating horror, ordering murders, condoning mass rapes and overseeing the killing of children.
  They described how Akayesu, who was elected mayor in 1993, had exhorted Hutu in a speech to ferret out Tutsi neighbors to kill them, even urging them to rip babies from mother's wombs.
  "He said the person who kills a rat never spares the one who is pregnant, you never spare a pregnant rat," one witness said.
  At one point in his month-long reign of terror, Akayesu ordered all Tutsi children to be stripped and the boys killed. Later, children of both sexes were murdered on his orders, witnesses said.
  Akayesu, a former teacher and school inspector born in 1953, also led house-to-house searches for certain Tutsi intellectuals, torturing people for information, witnesses said. In one instance he threatened to run over a elderly Hutu woman with a car unless she disclosed the whereabouts of a particular woman.
  Witnesses also said Akayesu sanctioned the rapes of dozens of young Tutsi women who were held at a Cultural Center next to his office and repeatedly violated. One witness described how he had allowed militiamen under his control to parade the naked women up and down and brutalize them sexually before clubbing them to death.
  Another witness reported that Akayesu had commented to militia members after the rape of several women: "So never ask me again what a Tutsi woman tastes like. Tomorrow they will be killed." The women were killed the next day.
  For many Rwandan survivors of the genocide, Akayesu's conviction is no comfort. Several said they had come to expect little from the tribunal, which has spent over $100 million since it was established and has just this year begun finishing trials.
  "People in Rwanda can't be satisfied and it's understandable," said Chantal Kayitesi, a spokeswoman for a group of Tutsi widows who survived the genocide. "The survivors are the people who need justice the most. But we don't know about or understand the procedures of the tribunal."
  In contrast, Rwandan courts have tried at least 330 people for genocide and have sentenced 116 to death, though foreign lawyers have said the trials do not meet international standards of fairness. In April, Rwandan firing squads executed 22 people convicted of taking part in the massacres.
  It is still unclear where Akayesu will spend his sentence, assuming the conviction is upheld on appeal. Norway and Denmark have both offered to house the tribunal's prisoners.
  The tribunal is now holding 26 defendants in Arusha, four of whom are on trial. Another suspect, Elizaphan Ntakirutimana, is being held in a Texas prison and has successfully fought extradition to Arusha. Eight others are under indictment but have not been apprehended.
  The tribunal has been criticized by judges and Rwandan officials for being slow and incompetent. One of the judges who wrote Wednesday's decision, Lennart Aspegren, has said he will resign this year in protest, citing bad management and poor working conditions.
  But court officials insist they have improved the tribunal's efficiency. Prosecutors are also seeking approval from judges to hold mass trials, which would speed the process.
  The Akayesu trial took a long time partly because it was the first, they said, and almost every legal question had to be decided with no precedents.
  "We believe the next set of trials will be faster than the ones we are about to conclude," a spokesman for the court, Kingsley Moghalu, said Wednesday. "It's not really that we are slow. It is a problem that is inherent in the nature of what we are doing."

September 2, 1998

  TRIBUNAL CONVICTS RWANDAN GENOCIDE SUSPECT
  Jean-Paul Akayesu: found guilty of genocide
  A former mayor has been found guilty of genocide by the UN International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda for his part in the mass killings of ethnic Tutsis in 1994.
  It is the first verdict reached by the tribunal since it was set up four years ago, and the first ever conviction by an international court on charges of genocide.
  Jean-Paul Akayesu, the former Mayor of Taba commune in Rwanda, sat impassively behind his defence lawyers as the court president, Laity Kama of Senegal, said he had been convicted on nine of the 15 charges against him.
  The three judges, sitting in Arusha, Tanzania, found Akayesu guilty of genocide, crimes against humanity and violations of the Geneva Conventions relating to the Rwanda massacres of 1994.
  The international tribunal will hold a pre-sentencing hearing on 28 September.
  The maximum sentence allowed by the international tribunal is life imprisonment. In Rwanda itself, those accused of genocide have been executed by the authorities there.
  ETHNIC KILLINGS
  During the trial, which began 19 months ago, prosecutors said the defendant had instigated massacres, torture and acts of sexual violence.
  THE CRIMES WERE SAID TO HAVE TAKEN PLACE IN MID-1994 WHEN ABOUT ONE MILLION ETHNIC TUTSIS AND MODERATE HUTUS WERE MURDERED IN RWANDA.
  Akayesu was alleged to have been in a position of responsibility when the killings took place.
  The court was told that in his area, some 2,000 people were murdered and that he was present at many killings, beatings and rapes.
  DEFENCE CASE REJECTED
  The judges rejected defence arguments that Akayesu was helpless to prevent the massacres because the soldiers and militia who carried out many of the killings were more powerful than he was as a politician.
  Judge Laity Kama said that in Rwanda a mayor "was treated with a lot of deference by the people and had a lot of power."
  The killings, he said, had been "meticulously organised".
  In its judgement, the tribunal cleared Akayesu of several charges relating to specific incidents such as the alleged killing of five teachers in front of a village office.
  However, it convicted him on the more general charges of genocide, inhuman acts, torture, extermination and murder.
  MORE TRIALS TO FOLLOW
  More than 30 suspects are currently being held by the tribunal.
  On Friday, the tribunal will sentence the former Rwandan Prime Minister, Jean Kambanda, who, after entering a guilty plea, has promised to testify against those chiefly responsible for the killings. ***31 August 1998


#top
JAPAN - WWII
RAPE OF NANKING
 Bodies were dumped in mass graves at Nanking 

  August 19, 1998
  JAPANESE WAR CRIMINALS MAKE WEB APOLOGY

  In an emotional webcast, a group of Japanese war criminals have recounted their roles in some of the most gruesome events in military history.
  Four elderly veterans spoke from Tokyo about atrocities committed during Japan's occupation of China. A global Internet audience was able to monitor the event which was beamed to the Simon Wiesenthal Center's Museum of Tolerance in Los Angeles.
  Shiro Azuma, who took part in what became known as the RAPE OF NANKING, confessed he had killed 37 women, children and elderly people.
  "We were able to kill them because we despised them," he said. "We didn't respect their rights. The Japanese army in general did not respect human rights at all."
  As many as 300,000 people were killed as the then-capital Nanking was looted and burned after its capture in 1937.
  "I am so sorry, I would like a judge to punish me. That is the only way I can repent," said a comrade, Hakudo Nagatomi.
  GERM WARFARE EXPERIMENTS
  Another soldier, Yoshio Shinozuka, told how he helped to develop germ warfare while stationed with a medical unit in occupied Manchuria.
  He had raised infected fleas on rats and cultivated typhoid, anthrax, plague and cholera to be used against the Soviet army.
  AN HISTORIAN TAKING PART IN THE EVENT, SHELDON HARRIS, SAID MORE THAN 10,000 PEOPLE HAD BEEN KILLED IN LAB EXPERIMENTS AND PERHAPS 250,000 IN BIOLOGICAL ATTACKS IN CHINA.
  Questions were e-mailed to the veterans or posed by the audience in Los Angeles.
  The organiser of the event, Rabbi Abraham Cooper, praised the moral courage of the men in speaking out and the presence of members of the Japanese media after some of their politicians had insisted atrocities had never taken place.
  "We hope that it serves as the education for young people who don't have to worry about whether NHK [Japan's national broadcaster] will cover it and can just go to the Website and listen to it for themselves," he said.

*********
 December 13, 1997
  THE RAPE OF NANKING - 60 YEARS ON
  Thousands of bodies were buried in ditches
  Sixty years ago this weekend, one of the worst massacres in modern times took place. Japanese troops captured the Chinese city of Nanking and embarked on a campaign of murder, rape and looting which lasted for several weeks.
  Based on estimates made by historians and charity organisations in the city at the time, between 250,000 and 300,000 people were killed, many of them women and children. The number of women raped was said by Westerners who were there to be 20,000, and there were widespread accounts of civilians being hacked to death.
  The nature of the atrocities is reflected by the official statue which is being unveiled this weekend. It is simply a severed head.
  Yet, many Japanese officials and historians deny that there was a massacre on such a scale. They admit that deaths and rapes did occur, but say they were on a much smaller scale than reported. And in any case, they argue, these things happen in times of war.
  The Sino-Japanese Wars
  In 1931, Japan invaded Chinese Manchuria following a bombing incident at a railway controlled by Japanese interests. The Chinese troops were no match for their opponents and Japan ended up in control of great swathes of Chinese territory.
  The following years saw Japan consolidate its hold, while China suffered civil war between communists and the nationalists of the Kuomintang. The latter were led by General Chiang Kai-shek, whose capital was at Nanking.
  Many Japanese, particularly some elements of the army, wanted to increase their influence and in July 1937 a skirmish between Chinese and Japanese troops escalated into full-scale war. The Japanese again had initial success, but then there was a period of successful Chinese defence before the Japanese broke through at Shanghai and swiftly moved on to Nanking.
  Chiang Kai-shek's troops had already left the city and the Japanese army occupied it without difficulty.
  "One of the great atrocities of modern times"
  At the time, the Japanese army did not have a reputation for brutality. In the Russo-Japanese War of 1904-5, the Japanese commanders had behaved with great courtesy towards their defeated opponents, but this was very different.
  Japanese papers reported competitions among junior officers to kill the most Chinese.
  One Japanese newspaper correspondent saw lines of Chinese being taken for execution on the banks of the Yangtse River, where he saw piles of burned corpses.
  Photographs from the time, now part of an exhibition in the city, show Japanese soldiers standing, smiling, among heaps of dead bodies.
  Tillman Durdin of the New York Times reported the early stages of the massacre before being forced to leave. He later wrote: "I was 29 and it was my first big story for the New York Times. So I drove down to the waterfront in my car. And to get to the gate I had to just climb over masses of bodies accumulated there. The car just had to drive over these dead bodies. And the scene on the river front, as I waited for the launch ... was of a group of smoking chattering Japanese officers overseeing the massacring of a battalion of Chinese captured troops. They were marching about in groups of about 15, machine-gunning them."
  As he departed, he saw 200 men being executed in 10 minutes to the apparent enjoyment of Japanese military spectators. He concluded that the rape of Nanking was "one of the great atrocities of modern times."
  "The memories cannot be erased"
  A Christian missionary, John Magee, described Japanese soldiers as killing not only "every prisoner they could find but also a vast number of ordinary citizens of all ages. Many of them were shot down like the hunting of rabbits in the streets." After what he described as a week of murder and rape, the Rev Magee joined other Westerners in trying to set up an international safety zone.
  Another who tried to help was an American woman, Minnie Vautrin, who kept a diary which has been likened to that of Anne Frank. Her entry for December 16 reads: "There probably is no crime that has not been committed in this city today. Thirty girls were taken from the language school [where she worked] last night, and today I have heard scores of heartbreaking stories of girls who were taken from their homes last night - one of the girls was but 12 years old...
  Later, she wrote: "How many thousands were mowed down by guns or bayoneted we shall probably never know. For in many cases oil was thrown over their bodies and then they were burned. Charred bodies tell the tales of some of these tragedies. The events of the following ten days are growing dim. But there are certain of them that lifetime will not erase from my memory and the memories of those who have been in Nanking through this period."
  Minnie Vautrin suffered a nervous breakdown in 1940 and returned to the US. She committed suicide in 1941.
  Also horrified at what he saw was John Rabe, a German who was head of the local Nazi party. He became leader of the international safety zone and recorded what he saw, some of it on film, but this was banned by the Nazis when he returned to Germany. He wrote about rape and other brutalities which occurred even in the middle of the supposedly protected area.
  Confession and denial
  After the Second World War was over, one of the soldiers who was in Nanking spoke about what he had seen.
  Azuma Shiro recalled one episode: "There were about 37 old men, old women and children. We captured them and gathered them in a square. There was a woman holding a child on her right arm ... and another one on her left. We stabbed and killed them, all three - like potatoes in a skewer. I thought then, it's been only one month since I left home ... and thirty days later I was killing people without remorse."
  Shiro suffered for his confession: "When there was a war exhibition in Kyoto, I testified. The first person who criticized me was a lady in Tokyo. She said I was damaging those who died in the war. She called me incessantly for three or four days. More and more letters came and the attack became so severe...that the police had to provide me with protection."
  Such testimony, however, has been discounted at the highest levels in Japan. Former Justice Minister Shigeto Nagano denied that the massacre had occurred, that it was a Chinese fabrication.
  Professor Ienaga Saburo spent many years fighting the Japanese government in the courts with only limited success for not allowing true accounts of Japanese war atrocities to be given in school textbooks.
  There is also opposition to the idea among ordinary Japanese people. A film called Don't Cry Nanking was made by Chinese and Hong Kong film-makers in 1995 but it has taken until this week to get it shown in Japan. One cinema in Nagoya, Japan's third largest city with a population of around two million, has begun screenings. Only around 200 people have been to see it so far.



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IRAQ
A family in the ruins of their house in al-Jumhuriya, outside Basra, Monday. Gen. Anthony C. Zinni, gulf forces commander, expressed regret but added, "These exchanges have been initiated by Saddam Hussein." 1/26/99
  U.S. ADMITS MISSILE MISFIRE MAY HAVE HIT IRAQ CIVILIANS
  By Steven Lee Myers January 26, 1999
  WASHINGTON -- American warplanes on Monday attacked several air-defense sites in northern and southern Iraq, and the Pentagon said that at least one missile misfired and might have killed several civilians in a residential neighborhood.
  Iraq, eager to rally international opposition to the American and British control of most of its skies, asserted that 11 civilians died and 59 others were injured in an unprovoked attack by American jets in an area called al-Jumhuriya, near the southern port city of Basra.
  In previous clashes, Iraq has claimed scores of civilian casualties and damage to residential and commercial areas from American raids that later proved unfounded. After Monday's clashes, foreign journalists in Iraq reported seeing several damaged or destroyed homes in the area and interviewed civilians who had been injured.
  Gen. Anthony C. Zinni, the commander of American forces in the Persian Gulf region, said the Pentagon had not yet determined if one of the American jets involved in Monday's clashes was responsible, but he confirmed that at least one missile had gone astray, missing its target.
  At the Pentagon on Monday afternoon, Zinni said that American planes patrolling the skies over southern Iraq had attacked Iraqi air defenses after four Soviet-built MiG fighters flew into the southern "no flight" zone in what he described as an effort to lure the Americans into range of surface-to-air missiles.
  "We deeply regret any civilian casualties, regardless of what the cause may be, but these exchanges have been initiated by Saddam Hussein," he said. "This has been a deliberate set of repeated attacks against our forces."  One defense official said that pilots try to avoid military targets Iraq has put in residential areas, something Zinni accused Hussein's military of doing.
  The Vatican on Monday criticized the latest air strikes, going so far as to call them aggression. Clinton is expected to meet with Pope John Paul II during his visit to St. Louis on Tuesday and Vatican officials have said Iraq will be among the topics of discussion.

damage to houses near Iraqi regional intelligence headquarters

  CIVILIANS CAUGHT IN THE WAR
1991 Their propaganda success in the baby milk factory controversy delighted the Iraqis, who took CNN reporter Peter Arnett on field trips to see more "collateral" damage to civilian sites. With tens of thousands of sorties flown, Baghdad only managed to produce a half dozen compelling cases of major civilian damage. Some were errors in bombing, others were the unavoidable damage that comes with air attacks. Each publicized example resulted in increased pressure on the Bush administration to end the hostilities.
  No matter how smart the bombs, the realities are that some of them missed their targets but still exploded and that civilian casualties and collateral damage occurred.
  Iraq's radio and television establishment in Baghdad was a high priority target; planners wanted to shut down the regime's communication with the people.
  The evidence suggests that errant U.S. bombs were not the only explanation. The Air Force blames Iraqi surface-to-air missiles, which were fired by the hundreds. Many are thought to have destroyed civilian housing when they fell back to Earth. Other possibilities include both Navy and Air Force decoy drones (a total of 77 were fired at Baghdad in the opening days of the war) as well as anti-radiation missiles fired at Baghdad radar sites.
  During Desert Storm, the Air Force discussed none of these possibilities and made no comparisons to the devasation of World War II bombing. The bombing of the Amiriyah shelter in Baghdad killed more than 400 Iraqi civilians on the night of Feb. 13. It was the worst single incident of civilian carnage in the war, exceeding all of the casualties in Baghdad over the previous month.


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