Andover War Crimes Conference

I tried to cover the war crimes conference in Andover over the weekend. I spoke to a few attendees, but couldn’t gain entry. Instead I watched it on the internet. Read the whole New York Sun column here.

Where the conference broke new ground was on the amount of time and discussion focused on getting members of the uniformed officers corps to come over to their side. The rhetoric went so far that the organizer of the conference and the dean of the Massachusetts School of Law, Lawrence Velvel, attempted to stop it.

A Brattleboro, Vt., activist and author of a successful petition in his town calling for the arrest and indictment of Messrs. Bush and Cheney, Kurt Daims, addressed the audience: “We have been trying to tell Congress, ‘don’t fund the war.’ We’ve just got to go around them,” Mr. Daims, a panelist, said. “We don’t talk to the president … We don’t talk to Congress … We talk to the military and say ‘Hey, your oath is to the Constitution, not to the president.'”

Mr. Velvel urged Mr. Daims to tamp down his call for activists to attempt to convince sympathetic officers to disobey orders. Mr. Velvel stressed the imperative to maintain “civilian control of the military,” which he called the “very thing that prevents a coup d’etat by the military in this country.”

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