American Military Justice and International Criminal Court Complementarity: The Case of UCMJ Article 60


Although the American military is effectively one of the most potent of international institutions, discussions of its regulation have been oddly domestic. The court-martial – the single most important institution for disciplining military forces, preventing atrocities and punishing offenders – has seen its jurisdiction and procedures hotly debated, but most often by those in uniform or individuals interested in domestic military policy. This paper aims to internationalize the discussion, recognizing that the discipline of American military forces is of major concern to both international law and U.S. foreign policy. By exploring the interaction between a major innovation in international law – the International Criminal Court – and the extensive clemency powers exercised by military commanders under the laws governing U.S. courts-martial, I hope to demonstrate that a systematic rethinking of American military justice is now necessary in light of changed international conditions.


Courts | Criminal Law | Criminal Procedure | International Law | Jurisdiction | Military, War, and Peace

Date of this Version

August 2006