Bikundo on Reading Faust Into International Criminal Law @EdwinBikundo
Edwin Bikundo has published Reading Faust into International Criminal Law at 33 Law & Literature 93 (2020). Here is the abstract.
Metaphorical references to the devil in international criminal justice are various, varied and tap into a rich vein of allusion, association and meaning. These range from simple references to evil, to more complex referencing to Faustian pacts of one form or another, to the downright esoteric encompassing the arcane origins of the immunity erstwhile afforded to official acts. Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta’s statement ‘That devil shall be defeated’ as well as Canadian General Romeo Dallaire’s ‘Shake Hands with the Devil’ are two examples respectively resisting and promoting international individual criminal liability. That Carl Schmitt was asked by his interrogator at Nuremberg ‘when did you renounce the devil?’ and that defence counsel at the International Criminal court in the Kenyan Situation analogised the Kenyan government as being accused of entering into ‘a deal with the devil’, to the judge at Rudolf Kastner’s case in Israel related to Nazi-era crimes described him as having ‘sold his soul to the devil’; cut across perpetrators and victims and speak of knowing and willing compacts with evil in order to, allegedly, produce good. Which is to say that they are all political theodicies explaining away evil by linking it in some causal way to good.