Was the order to cause "shock and awe" in Iraq in 2003 a punishable war crime?

The Treaty of Rome that governs the International Criminal Court (ICC) identifies the causing of "excessive incidental (civilian) death" as a punishable war crime. Since it is now undisputed that the "shock and awe" invasion of Iraq caused tens of thousands of civilian deaths with no proportionate justification, should those who ordered the invasion (George W. Bush, Richard Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld)be prosecuted as war criminals? If so, how can this realistically be accomplished in light of the fact that neither the U.S. nor Iraq have sanctioned the Treaty of Rome, as well as the fact that U.S. courts are prone to disallow such war-related prosecutions on the basis of the "political question doctrine", as well as lack of "standing"?

Car culture and suburbs grow right-wing populism, claims study

New research links urban planning and political polarization.

Politics & Current Affairs
  • Canadian researchers find that excessive reliance on cars changes political views.
  • Decades of car-centric urban planning normalized unsustainable lifestyles.
  • People who prefer personal comfort elect politicians who represent such views.
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How to split the USA into two countries: Red and Blue

Progressive America would be half as big, but twice as populated as its conservative twin.

Image: Dicken Schrader
Strange Maps
  • America's two political tribes have consolidated into 'red' and 'blue' nations, with seemingly irreconcilable differences.
  • Perhaps the best way to stop the infighting is to go for a divorce and give the two nations a country each
  • Based on the UN's partition plan for Israel/Palestine, this proposal provides territorial contiguity and sea access to both 'red' and 'blue' America
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NASA astronomer Michelle Thaller on ​the multiple dimensions of space and human sexuality

Science and the squishiness of the human mind. The joys of wearing whatever the hell you want, and so much more.

Flickr / 13winds
Think Again Podcasts
  • Why can't we have a human-sized cat tree?
  • What would happen if you got a spoonful of a neutron star?
  • Why do we insist on dividing our wonderfully complex selves into boring little boxes
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