[Modified on 18 Aug., 2021] On March 1st 2021, the jury of the 2020 edition of the Giuseppe Torre award for critical analysis essays on the International Criminal Court on the former Yugoslavia met by telephone.
The three members of the jury, Jeannie Toschi Marazzani Visconti, Ugo Villani and Ugo Giannangeli, after careful examination of the six essays received and an in-depth comparison of opinions, reached a unanimous conclusion. The essays were generally considered to be of excellent quality, but three out of five were judged to be more compliant with the evaluation criteria indicated in the award announcement.
The jury therefore decided to award first prize to George Szamuely's essay “Securing Desired Outcomes: The Political Mission of the ICTY” and second ex aequo prize to essays by George Andrew Wilcoxson “A Critical Look at the ICTY – The Tribunal’s Origin and Behaviour” and the BCRT collective (The Balkan Conflicts Research Team) represented by Jonathan Rooper “Truth and Justice – the American Way. How the ICTY distorted History and Perverted Justice”.
Szamuely's essay is the one that most investigated the legal distortions, up to real aberrations, in the work of the Court. By way of example only: the protection of blatantly mendacious texts, the use of anonymous or "de relato" testimonies, the extreme extension of the participation in the crime, the substantial reversal of the burden of proof, the change of the rules in progress opera, the zeroing in the right of defense.
There is also a clear and well-motivated criticism as to the origin of the Tribunal and of its political and non-legal function: it was born on the initiative of the UN Security Council, however without adequate legal bases, but immediately revealed to be an instrument of NATO, the US and Western interests in the area.
The essay submitted by Rooper on behalf of the BCRT collective is analytical and well documented, with a correct examination, albeit less detailed than Szamuely’s of the fundamental legal aspects. The style is dry and concrete, the language is suitable for diffusion even among non-experts in law. A similar evaluation for Wilcoxson's essay which, like the other two aspects, albeit in a synthetic way, the parameters indicated in the award announcement: critical analysis of the work of the Court, its legitimacy (originally denied), its impartiality (denied in toto) , protection of the rights of the accused (non-existent).
All three essays show that the main declared aim, the Tribunal's contribution to reconciliation, was nil; on the contrary, the obvious anti-weed bias contributed to the persistence, if not even to the exacerbation, of interethnic hostility.
If the jury decided to award the prizes to these three essays, it is also true that the essay by Jovan Miloyevich deserves attention and diffusion, too; therefore, its publication is recommended.
Jeannie Toschi Marazzani Visconti
The Jugocoord Association Board acknowledged with satisfaction the results of the 2020-2021 edition of the "Giuseppe Torre" Competition, and on the basis of the Members' Assembly decisions on April 10, 2021:
- approves an additional allocation to the Competition prize pool, so that each of the two second prize ex-aequo winners will be awarded € 2000 net of tax;
- proposes to the Authors of the winning and Jury recommended texts the publication of their works in a book that can internationally circulate in the context of Jugocoord "orientaMenti" (orientMinds) series as they are rich in information and deserving to be known by the public;
- will organize an online public initiative with this edition winners, the Jury members and other experts on the topics covered in the Competition, where to possibly present the above publication. The times and methods of this initiative will be defined with those directly involved.
April 10, 2021