Justice in the BalkansProsecuting War Crimes in the Hague Tribunal

Justice in the BalkansProsecuting War Crimes in the Hague Tribunal

John Hagan

Print publication date: 2013

ISBN: 9780226312286

Publisher: University of Chicago Press


Called a fig leaf for inaction by many at its inception, the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia has surprised its critics by growing from an unfunded U.N. Security Council resolution to an institution with more than 1,000 employees and a $100 million annual budget. With Slobodan Milosevic now on trial and more than forty fellow indictees currently detained, the success of the Hague tribunal has forced many to reconsider the prospects of international justice. This book is a firsthand look at the inner workings of the tribunal as it has moved from an experimental organization initially viewed as irrelevant to the first truly effective international court since Nuremberg. Creating an institution that transcends national borders is a challenge fraught with political and organizational difficulties, yet the Hague tribunal has increasingly met these difficulties head-on and overcome them. The chief reason for its success, the author argues, is the people who have shaped it, particularly its charismatic chief prosecutor, Louise Arbour. The book re-creates how Arbour worked with others to turn the tribunal's fortunes around, reversing its initial failure to arrest and convict significant figures, and advancing the tribunal's agenda to the point at which Arbour and her colleagues, including her successor, Carla Del Ponte (nicknamed the Bulldog), were able to indict Milosevic himself. Leading readers through the investigations and criminal proceedings of the tribunal, it offers an original account of the foundation and maturity of the institution.