Nicolas J S Davies

A collection of published articles and letters to policymakers regarding the crisis in United States foreign policy by Nicolas J S Davies.

Location: North Miami, Florida, United States

Saturday, February 28, 2004

Letter to Congress on NSA Wiretapping at U.N.

The Hon. Kendrick Meek
1039 Longworth House Office Building
Washington DC 20515

Saturday, February 28th 2004

Dear Kendrick,

As of today, the growing list of U.N. officials reportedly bugged by the U.S. National Security Agency and its British allies includes the Secretary General, the delegations of several Non-Permanent Members of the Security Council and two Chief Weapons Inspectors.

These revelations were triggered by the case of Katharine Gun, the British whistle-blower who leaked a secret memo (see copy enclosed) in February 2003. In this memo, Frank Koza of the NSA asked for assistance from his British counterparts to spy on the U.N. delegations of Angola, Cameroon, Chile, Bulgaria, Guinea and Pakistan. There is little surprise in revelations of NSA spying at the U.N. but the disposition of the case against Ms. Gun has exposed more significant issues regarding the rule of international law.

British prosecutors dropped their case against Ms. Gun this week only after her lawyer told the court that he would call Britain’s Attorney General and Foreign Office legal advisors to testify regarding the illegality of the war in Iraq. One of those advisors, Elizabeth Wilmshurst, who resigned last year, has now revealed that this was in fact over the illegality of the war.

As I pointed out in my letters of January 1st and February 13th 2004, the United States Government is committed under Article VI of the United States Constitution to abide by international treaties it has signed and ratified, which the Constitution declares to be “the supreme Law of the Land”. It is now clear that President Bush and Mr. Blair were advised that a war against Iraq would violate the Kellogg-Briand Pact and the United Nations Charter, and that they chose to ignore this advice, and yet neither Republicans nor Democrats in Congress have challenged the legality or constitutionality of their actions. Thus, in an election year, we find ourselves faced with a choice between two major political parties that are equally unwilling to defend the rule of international law and the relevant clauses of our Constitution. Is it really too much to hope that the Democratic Party can make a renewed commitment to Article VI of the United States Constitution between now and the General Election?

Yours sincerely

Friday, February 20, 2004

Follow-up Letter on Illegality of War in Iraq

Senator John Kerry
304 Russell Senate Office Building
Washington DC 20510

Friday, February 20th 2004

Dear Senator Kerry,

I am writing today as an addendum to my letter of January 1st 2004, in which I concluded that the U.S. invasion of Iraq was illegal under the terms of the Kellogg-Briand Pact and the U.N. Charter, and therefore unconstitutional under Article VI (the “Supremacy Clause”) of the U.S. Constitution.

My letter cited from the Nuremberg Judgment, and I therefore also took the liberty of asking Ben Ferencz, who served as Chief Prosecutor at the Nuremberg Tribunal in 1946, to comment on my conclusions. Mr. Ferencz was kind enough to reply to my enquiry, and told me, “I agree completely with your conclusion that the U.S. has committed an illegal act of aggression by its invasion of Iraq”.

While you have addressed various aspects of the ongoing war in Iraq in your election campaign, you have been silent on the fundamental question of legality, which lies at the heart of this entire problem. A simple commitment to the rule of international law would have sufficed to steer our country clear of the growing crisis we have precipitated. The absence of such a commitment to the rule of international law by the leaders of either major political party in the U.S. threatens the peace and stability of the entire world. I hope that you will seriously consider my conclusions as well as those of Mr. Ferencz; that you will speak out against the illegal and unconstitutional policies of the Bush administration; and that you will publicly call for the renunciation of militarism and a renewed commitment to the rule of constitutional and international law.

Yours sincerely