Saturday, November 29, 2014

La justice militaire, immuable et changeante

Prof. Emmanuel Decaux
Francophone readers of Global Military Justice Reform will find it worthwhile to study Prof. Emmanuel Decaux's essay "La Justice Militaire, Immuable et Changeante," in Bernard Teyssié ed., Penal Code and Code of Criminal Procedure: Bicentennial Book 383-409 (Dalloz 2010). He begins with this observation:
Military justice is the great absentee of the Penal Code. In 1810, no provision of the Criminal Code mentioned it, and these days you have to go to the Dalloz edition of the Code of Criminal Procedure to find the text of the Code of Military Justice that is now in force. This relegation confirms the received learning that exceptional courts were abolished once and for all in 1982. The Left revels in this illusion, the army takes refuge in the pretense. Far from musical comparisons, repeated ad nauseam following Clemenceau's comment in the midst of the Dreyfus Case, military justice has become a fall guy. [Editor's translation; corrections are invited.]
And ends with this:
It is easier to abolish a court than to reform justice.
Prof. Decaux is well-known for the Decaux Principles, more formally, the Draft Principles Governing the Administration of Justice Through Military Tribunals, U.N. Doc. E/CN.4/2006/58 at 4 (2006).

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