The reality is that most modern wars involve serious war crimes against civilians. Most claims by warring states and non-state aggressors that civilian casualties are only “collateral damage” due to “military necessity” are false.
The widespread shelling of civilian homes by Russian forces in Ukraine is a war crime. The International Criminal Court (ICC) should prosecute all alleged war crimes, but is powerless to do so in most cases.
Three permanent members of United Nations Security Council – China, USA and Russia – have not signed and not ratified the International Criminal Court.
They can also use their veto to prevent their leaders or citizens from being prosecuted by the ICC. Only 123 of the 193 UN member states have ratified the International Criminal Court.
Many war crimes happen because those who commit them know they are unlikely to be brought to justice. Because the rules of international law – including the UN and the International Criminal Court – are completely inadequate.
In recent decades, the United Nations has failed to fulfill its primary role in establishing and maintaining world peace.
dr Edward Horgan
Castletroy, Co Limerick
Name and shame Irish companies that still have ties to Russia
After seeing these horrific, disgusting images of murdered civilians coming out of Ukraine, every Irish company that still has ties to Russia should be publicly named in our national newspapers.
There is no plausible reason for either of them to continue trading other than to make a profit. I have a feeling their market value would go down.
dr Aidan Hampson
We’re in a baby boom, so why all the fuss about pension deficits?
The latest figures show that Ireland has a ‘birth rate’ of 13.4 per 1,000 people, up 1.8 per thousand from the third quarter of 2020 (‘Rebirth of a nation: Figures suggest Covid baby boom’), Irish Independent4. April).
In fact, Ireland’s birth rate in 2018 was the highest in the European Union at 12.5 births per 1,000 people, while the death rate recorded here that year was the lowest at 6.4 per 1,000. This is according to information from Eurostat. In comparison, Italy had a birth rate of 7.3 per 1,000 in the same year.
So maybe someone can explain why – if Ireland has had one of the highest birth rates in the EU for many years – there is so much noise being made about “pension deficits” in this country with the so-called “ageing population”?
Listowel, County Kerry
Are shorter showers enforced by a government agency?
This got me thinking based on Eamon Ryan’s advice that we should all take shorter showers.
The dystopian writer George Orwell featured the Thought Police in his novel Nineteen eight-four. With that in mind, are we, the citizens of this state, just a short step away from the Drizzle Enforcers?
Rathfarnham, Dublin 16
Sad when a leader cannot trust his party
Reading Fionnán Sheahan’s article on the relationship between Micheál Martin and the party he leads (“Unwitting FF rebels have been outwitted by the sly Martin whose fate is in his hands”, Irish IndependentApril 4), a question came to mind.
How many people believe, like me, that we would live in a much better, fairer and fairer society if Mr. Martin had focused all his political wiles on creating such a place instead of having to constantly outwit members of his own party?
In fact, the fact that Mr. Martin had to constantly look over his shoulder for “rebels” tells us all we need to know. A well-respected leader has little fear of being conspired against.
Why Ed Sheeran would strike the right note in Páirc Uí Chaoimh’s big clash
There is no reason why the controversial Munster football semi-final between Cork and Kerry could not be played at the Páirc Uí Chaoimh.
Everything Ed Sheeran plays is an acoustic guitar. He’s not backed by a big band. Would an extra man on the pitch really do that much?
Firehouse, Dublin 24
https://www.independent.ie/opinion/letters/putin-knows-he-wont-face-justice-for-his-war-crimes-41520935.html Putin knows he will not be tried for his war crimes