Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Open letter of The Hague-based legal advisor to Jimmy Kimmel who called Duterte 'lunatic' and 'murderer'

Jimmy Kimmel is the host of the popular TV show whose program's title go by his own name 'Jimmy Kimmel Live!'.
Jimmy Kimmel and Pres. Rodrigo Duterte | Photo from Google

He is a vocal critic of their President Donald Trump.

In one of his show's latest episodes, Kimmel commented on the recently-concluded Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Summit held here in Manila where President Donald Trump attended.

On the said episode, the late-night talk show host called President Rodrigo Duterte 'absolute lunatic' and a 'murderer'.

In a Facebook post, the legal advisor based in The Hague, Netherlands, Paula Defensor Knack, expressed her disappointment over Kimmel's rude and baseless remarks for the Philippine president.

The sister of the late Miriam Defensor Santiago lambasted the show's host by elaborating his own country's issues with drug war and human rightsboth resonates very well with Kimmel's statement.

Below is her Facebook post:


I read that Jimmy Kimmel is "boozing out of control" and recently insulted Philippine President Duterte who he has never met. Neither has he witnessed the drug war in the Philippines. This is a dumbass.

Kimmel should go to the Philippines and repeat what he said about Duterte in front of Filipinos so in the process he can be lectured on why the drug war was undertaken and the many problems law enforcement faces in Southeast Asia. KIMMEL, YOUR OWN COUNTRY HAS AN ONGOING DRUG WAR AND YOU MUST HAVE BEEN INTOXICATED WHILE IT IS ONGOING because your perceptions are very selective . There is no bigger human rights violator than your own country when it comes to drug wars. You even sent military troops to another jurisdiction ! Thats how dumb you are. If thats not enough, you now have roving Guantanamos that stretch from near the coast all the way to where you want to unload suspects you detain for months without charges. What a piece of roving hell.

While the U.S. sent military troops sent to neutralize Mexico's druglords, the drug war has expanded to include detention of fishermen- drug smugglers from Colombia entering the Caribbean prior to entering U.S. territory. So what is the legal basis for detaining the smugglers, shackling them, and starving them when they are not on U.S. territorial seas? Cant Kimmel see that his country continues to VIOLATE U.N. CONVENTIONS AGAIN relative to the treatment of detainees or does he want to ask the detainees how many pieces of beans they have eaten for months?

What Kimmel does not address are HUMAN RIGHTS VIOLATIONS OF THE U.S., the exporter of its own brand of democracy to poor countries and one known for illegal wars. He can start reading about them from the New York Times and the Washington Post on what the American military contractors and officials did in Afghanistan, which is now subject of an inquiry by the Office of the Prosecutor of the ICC.

Next, he can read the Nov. 20, 2017 issue of the NY Ttimes which includes another article on U.S. human rights violations RELATIVE TO ITS DRUG WAR entitled "The Coast Guard's Floating Guantanamo written by Seth Freed Wessler. In the article, Wessler describes the plight of fishermen-smugglers who are detained in shackles inside Coast Guard ships IN INTERNATIONAL WATERS and detained with little food and no facilities, and without trial for months in gross violation of human rights. https://www.nytimes.com/…/the-coast-guards-floating-guantan…

While the U.S. Coast Guard did not intend to put up a prison facility in the seas, it is clearly liable for detaining suspects for months in the sea, without legal counsel and without charges! The NYT article states :

" in the 1970s, as marijuana trafficking ballooned on the route from Colombia into the Caribbean before arriving in the United States, Justice Department officials argued to Congress that current U.S. law constrained law enforcement’s ability to punish drug smugglers caught on the high seas. While the Coast Guard, then a branch of the Department of Transportation, could chase smugglers into the Caribbean, Justice Department lawyers could rarely hold smugglers caught in the legal gray zone of international waters criminally liable in U.S. courts."

Take note of the last words "gray zone of international waters" which means more than the high seas (mare liberum) because the U.S. has not ratified the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea.

(Note : For purposes of U.S. naval law, international waters encompasses several zones under UNCLOS : contiguous zone, EEZ, high seas, and security zones (remember Greenpeace arbitration case). This is far broader than UNCLOS ! That means within a few miles from the coast, the US can seize anyone, detain him on board, put him on shackles, starve him and then sail elsewhere without charging, without bringing them to the nearest port for trial because drugs is not illegal everywhere so it has to be a crime that is covered by treaty and the port country has to be willing to receive the suspects and must have facilities for them which is problematic. There is no other phrase to describe the ships but ------truly a roving Guantanamo !)

This 'international waters" term and jurisdiction thereon has been highly debated in international law because it can stretch the doctrine of criminal jurisdiction extraterritorially and can be used arbitrarily since there are no floating courts nor judges and no witnesses even for pirates. It is floating hell. This is like war waged by those with powerful navies against the lowly fisherman. More so in the case of the U.S. floating Guantanamos where the crime does not take place within the ship, but they are detained and shacked IN THE SHIP FOR MONTHS. Neither are they pirates and neither do they fall under the convention on the use of force at sea. Neither. But we do not read news of these floating Guantanamos elsewhere nor do they appear on TV. So why the big hush if it is legal under the norms of international law ? 

Kimmel therefore, is an ENABLER of injustice, a manifest tyrant whose eyes see only poor countries, but not the injustices committed by the powerful, ex. the U.S.

And who hasnt heard of Guantanamo ? We thought Obama would immediately close Guantanamo, but that didnt happen as promised. Water torture became a byword because of Guantanamo. Now Trump says the suspect of the New York bombing should be sent to Guantamo, which is the monumental edifice of systematic torture and arbitrary detention of our times.

Again, who is Kimmel to say that Duterte is the villain while DELIBERATELY OMITTING THE U.S. DRUG WAR ? Has alcohol affected his faculties that he cant see what goes on near him , but passes judgement on what is far and never witnessed ? 

In the Philippines, we have native liquor, so strong all you need is a match and you are on fire. Kimmel must have a dose of that to see what hell looks like. Perhaps thats how it feels inside Guantanamo - floating or otherwise.
Paula Defensor Knack | Photo from her Facebook account

Watch video below from Jimmy Kimmel Live!:

Source: Paula Defensor Knack and Pinoy Thinking

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