The NATO military alliance is a world encompassing threat. It is now conducting various forms of hybrid warfare against Russia, China, Iran, North Korea, Venezuela, Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, and most of Africa. They have destroyed directly or are largely responsible for the destruction of the socialist nations of the USSR, Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Syria and too many to name in Latin America, Africa and Asia. Destruction is the fate that each nation on earth can expect unless it pays homage and obeisance to these neo-feudal overlords who promise protection in return for national servitude, in return for the complete surrender of their people and natural resources to increase the rate of profit for the capital that controls the NATO military machine. For NATO is first and foremost the armed fist not only of the United States and its allies as nations, but is the armed fist of the capitalists of those nations who are prepared to strike against any nation, capitalist or socialist, that stands in their way of obtaining profit.
The primary concern they have, in order to preserve their control, is for the preservation of the new feudal mythology that they have created; that the world is a dangerous place, that they are the protectors, that the danger is omnipresent, eternal, and omnidirectional, comes from without, and comes from within. The mythology is constructed and presented through all media; journals, films, television, radio, music, advertising, books, the internet in all its variety; all the information systems available are used to create and maintain scenarios and dramas to convince the people that they, the protectors, are the good and all others are the bad. We are bombarded with this message incessantly. They have succeeded into luring us to all their communication platforms, so that no one is able to ignore the constant flow of information into their consciousness and their subconscious. They have us locked to our screens. The have our attention. They have us hypnotised and under this state of hypnosis we are fed so many images we cannot take any of them in and so we drown in the river of information washing over us, barely able to breathe, unable to think, blind from looking.
The use of propaganda, and by propaganda I mean here the use of lies, inventions, fabrications, distortions and misrepresentations of reality in order to evoke an emotional response in the receiver of the desired type and desired action to follow, is a primary pillar of the mythology they create. The immediate means of delivery is through the news media. To turn on the television these days to watch the political, national and world “news” is a surreal experience. You have a dissociative experience as the presenters present not “news” but carefully crafted scripts inventing scenarios out of whole cloth that have nothing to do with what is really happening in any given situation. Even the weather “news” is moulded to keep mention of abrupt climate change to a minimum and sports “news” seems like a rehearsal for war news to come as our team smashes their team with our catastrophic weapons, erases them from the earth, never to play again.
But whatever form the propaganda takes it is a crime against the people, a crime against the republic, a crime against democracy, and since it is a part of the hybrid warfare campaign being conducted and because it is used to provoke a large aggressive general war, it is a war crime.
It is a crime against the people because the people are in essence the state, the nation. The leaders of our nations are merely our representatives placed in positions of power through various, more or less “democratic” mechanisms to act for our benefit, on our behalf. But when these leaders instead represent secret cabals of financiers and industrialists who want to use the government machinery for their private benefit against the interests of their people then they have betrayed the people, have sold them out to the highest bidder. Their lies flow from this betrayal for if their wars were just they would not need to use propaganda. But their wars are not just, they are the actions of gangsters writ large and so to get the people to go along, to fool them, they, by necessity, have to lie to the people.
It is a crime against democracy for the same reason, for democracy means that representatives of the people put in positions of power have a duty to inform the people honestly on all issues, to present all the facts and arguments, and most importantly, fulfil their duty to preserve the peace and to seek peaceful resolutions of differences between nations. But again, their wars for the profit of a few are always against the interests of the people and so the lies become part of the system of control, and with each lie the grave of democracy is dug deeper and deeper.
It is a crime against the republic because the republic is the people ruling themselves, in the name of the people, not the people ruled by a monarch or emperor, who rule in their own name. So when the leaders of a republic lie to the people of the republic they repudiate the republic and act against its interests and for the private interests of those who control them. They subvert the republic and destroy it.
It is a war crime because propaganda is used to provoke war, to sustain war, to turn other people, declared to be the enemy, into beings that need to be killed. It robs them of their humanity, of their kinship with us, their desires and dreams, and makes them into vermin to be destroyed with ease and even joy in the killing. It turns us into salivating monsters calling for death of the other and cheering when the bombs explode; turns us all into the Hilary Clinton lunatic who cackled like some satanic demon as she watched a great man cut to pieces before her eyes.
I could give dozens, hundreds, thousands of examples of how the propaganda is being used. The New York Times, BBC, CNN, CBC and the rest of the western media are full of it every day and every day worse than the day before, against Russia, China, North Korea, Iran, Syria Venezuela, all the known targets. We all sense that the intensity if it is increasing, the vitriol becoming more hysterical and absurd with every headline.
The journalists who write these propaganda pieces and the presenters who read them on television are among the worst of criminals as they sit there looking attractive, with their fake smiles and fake concern, while taking lots of money to lie to our faces every day. It takes a very low person to sit there and lie to their fellow citizens so easily. It takes someone who has no sense of morality whatsoever. One could say they are sociopaths. But criminals they are and they deserve to be in the dock with the leaders that hand them the scripts they read so willingly.
For propaganda is a threat to peace itself. It is not only necessary to eliminate nuclear weapons and armies, it is also necessary to eliminate the psychological weapons that are used to justify, provoke and prolong war. Lenin once said that “disarmament is an ideal of socialism” and it was, we must not forget, the USSR that developed ideals of international peace and responsibility for wars of aggression. The successor state of Russia still relies on these principles.
On the second day of the creation of Soviet power the Decree on Peace was issued that made it a matter of state policy that aggressive war is a crime. Up until then it was assumed that nation states had an inherent right to go to war for their own interests. War propaganda is a way of preparing for aggressive war and consequently is a war crime. This was confirmed at the Nuremberg Tribunal in 1946.
This was echoed in the Resolution of the General Assembly of the United Nations of November 3, 1947 that denounced war propaganda;
“The General Assembly condemns all forms of propaganda, in whatsoever country conducted, which is either designed or likely to provoke or encourage any threat to the peace, breach of the peace, or act of aggression.”
A Soviet draft definition of aggression presented to the General Assembly in 1957 defined war propaganda as ideological aggression. Their draft stated that a state has committed ideological aggression when it “encourages war propaganda, encourages propaganda for the use of atomic or other weapons of mass extermination and stimulates nazi-fascist views, racial or national superiority, or hatred and disdain for other peoples.”
But before that the Supreme Soviet on March 12, 1950 passed a law on the defence of peace that stated:
“The Supreme Soviet of the USSR is guided by the high principles of the Soviet peace policy, which seeks to strengthen peace and friendly relations between the peoples, recognises that human conscience and the concept of right of the peoples, who, during one generation suffered the calamities of two wars, cannot accept that the conduct of war propaganda remain unpunished, and approves the proclamation of the Second World Congress of the Partisans of Peace, who expressed the will of the entire progressive mankind concerning the prohibition and condemnation of criminal war propaganda.
“The Supreme Soviet decrees,
To recognise that war propaganda under whatever form it is made, undermines the cause of peace, creates the threat of new war and is the graves crime against humanity.
To bring to court person guilty of war propaganda and to try them as having committed a most grave criminal offense.”
The western powers blocked a Russian UN resolution at that time to denounce war propaganda even though it was in accord with the principles of the United Nations Charter which makes it a duty of all member states to preserve the peace. The west relied on arguments of “free speech” arguments that do not hold water since war propaganda is not designed to enlighten people but to twist their minds into thoughts of hatred and war.
The Rome Statute today contains a clause that arguably encompasses these principles in Article 5, dealing with aggression, though this clause is not yet in effect. It is one of the grave problems with the International Criminal Court, that aside from being controlled effectively by the US and European Union for their purposes, its statute does not include a specific section on war propaganda. But then the United States and its allies prevented the inclusion of such a clause just as they prevented the adoption of the resolution at the UN in the 1950’s so that they could continue using war propaganda as part of their arsenal of world control.
So, the criminal dossier against NATO grows with the crimes committed. One day we can hope that those responsible for the war propaganda used against us will face the peoples’ justice but in the meantime we have to be aware that when we are confronted with it, when we open a newspaper, turn on the television, or radio, click that link on the internet, we are the victims of a war crime, the use of war propaganda as part of the crime of aggression, each and every one of us. And if that does not make you angry then what hope is there for peace in this world?
Christopher Black is an international criminal lawyer based in Toronto. He is known for a number of high-profile war crimes cases and recently published his novel “Beneath the Clouds. He writes essays on international law, politics and world events, especially for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook.”