Confronting Past Human Rights Violations
Routledge, 2004 M08 12 - 248 pages
This book examines what makes accountability for previous violations more or less possible for transitional regimes to achieve. It closely examines the other vital goals of such regimes against which accountability is often balanced. The options available are not simply prosecution or pardon, as the most heated polemics of the debate over transitional justice suggest, but a range of options from complete amnesty through truth commissions and lustration or purification to prosecutions. The question, then, is not whether or not accountability can be achieved, but what degree of accountability can be achieved by a given country.
The focus of the book is on the politics of transition: what makes accountability more or less feasible and what strategies are deployed by regimes to achieve greater accountability (or alternatively, greater reform). The result is a more nuanced understanding of the different conditions and possibilities that countries face, and the lesson that there is no one-size-fits-all prescription that can be handed to transitional regimes.
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accountability Alfonsín amnesty Amnesty International apartheid Argentina Argentine Armed Forces argued armed forces attempts August Author’s interview balance of forces civil civil-military relations Colombo commission of inquiry Communist CONADEP conflict constitutional reform countries coup court crimes defence Democracy democratic Derechos Humanos dirty war disappearances discussed doctrine elections ethnic external actors factors FAES February FMLN former Fuerzas Armadas further government’s Hechos Honduras human rights abuses human rights violations Human Rights Watch Impunity institutional investigate issue Jaffna junta Khmer Rouge Klerk Kritz legislation LTTE lustration Malamud-Goti Menem military’s negotiations Nonetheless ONUSAL opposition parties past abuses peace accords peacekeeping perpetrators police Policía political president prosecutions punishment rebels reconciliation repression response Roht-Arriaza role Salvador Proceso Salvadoran security forces significant Sinhalese South Africa Soviet Sri Lanka Suzanne Daley Tamil threat torture trade-offs Transitional Justice transitional regimes trials truth commission victims York