September 21, 2005
Depends on the Definition of Sovereignty
September 21, 2005 12:17 PM
I write this while sitting in Con Law discussing Morrison v. Olson, 487 U.S. 654 (1988) (upholding power of Independent Counsel to investigate the Executive branch). My memory may be hazy, but I seem to recall something about handing over sovereignty back to a certain country in a certain fertile crescent, which this seems to contradict. Either I have a warped definition of sovereignty (i.e., discretion to prosecute as a bare minimum starting point) or my memory of the event is just not accurate.
Discretion to prosecute foreign military personnel stationed in a state is governed by a Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA). I've never seen the one between the UK and Iraq, but I'm pretty sure it would have a provision for handing over British troops to the British armed forces for prosecution. Apparently the UK tried unsuccessfully to negotiate the handover.
Posted by sro at September 22, 2005 01:44 AM