Regarding that story about the Swiss arrest threat against President Bush, David Frum points out that one person has been conspicuously silent on the matter. As NGOs claim credit for thwarting Bush’s trip to Switzerland, President Obama has made no attempt to intervene on behalf of his beleaguered predecessor:
It’s hard to know how much of this story is true, and how much is fundraising bluster. But if even a small portion of the news is true, President Obama has a duty to speak up and to warn foreign governments that further indulgence of this kind of nonsense by their court systems will be viewed as an unfriendly act by the United States. It is one more reminder of why the concept of an International Criminal Court is such an invitation to mischief.
And for those inclined to enjoy the mischief: Just wait until somebody serves an arrest warrant in Luxembourg on ex-President Obama for ordering all those drone strikes on the Afghanistan-Pakistan border.
Frum’s note about the accuracy of this story is prudent, especially since the human-rights groups involved have been promoting it all over the place. However, a Swiss Jewish charity confirmed that it did cancel a planned keynote address by Bush due to safety concerns over possible protests. So it does sound like human-rights groups have put a lot of pressure on the organizations involved in Bush’s trip.
Frum also makes the good point that Obama has a personal stake in speaking out on this issue. After all, his administration has continued many of the same counterterrorism policies that drove left-wing NGOs hysterical under Bush. It’s only a matter of time until Obama finds himself fielding subpoenas to the Hague — and when he does, he’ll want the next guy (or gal) in office sticking up for him.