Criminal Leaders

I have argued elsewhere that dishonestly opposing the urgent need to reduce greenhouse gas emissions is a crime against humanity and the biosphere. I also hold that it follows that those in positions of power who knowingly lie in order to slow the reduction in emissions have to be among the worst criminals in the history of humanity.

Another crime committed by the leaders of the USA, Britain and Australia was the unjustified, unethical, counter-productive and enormously harmful invasion of Iraq in 2003.

This page was written 2019/04/27, last edited 2021/10/20
Contact: David K. Clarke – ©

One of the definitions of 'crime' in the Oxford Dictionary is "An action or activity considered to be evil, shameful, or wrong".

Resistance to reducing greenhouse emissions

Red stringybark trees defoliated by an exceptionally hot and dry summer and autumn, 2007/08.
Just one example of damage caused by climate change close to my home; there are enormously more at greater distances.
Red stringybark
Photo in Spring Gully Conservation Park, near Clare, SA, 2008/05/11.
This is an isolated community of red stringybark, the only such area in SA. Higher temperatures, with global warming, will probably cause their local extinction.
More information on another page on this site.
What can be more evil, shameful, or wrong than, by deliberately dishonest actions, contributing to causing the extinction of thousands of species, the displacement and quite probably the deaths of millions or even billions of people, and condemning future generations of humanity to living on a greatly damaged planet?

Many people in positions of power around the world are guilty of this crime, the most obvious from an international perspective are Rupert Murdoch and President of the USA Donald Trump.

From my point of view as an Australian just as contemptible are Prime Ministers Tony Abbott and Scott Morrison and billionaire Gina Rinehart who has funded a climate change disinformation campaign. In per-capita terms Australia is one of the worst produces of greenhouse gasses and Australian Coalition governments in particular have been among the most recalcitrant in the world in taking action to reduce emissions.

Australian governments, both Labor and Coalition, and many Australian people, are strongly pro-coal. The coal industry is very powerful in Australia, which is one of the biggest exporters of coal. Of course such a big industry is a major employer and many of those who are employed tend to selfishly place their jobs ahead of the future of the planet in their priorities; such is human nature. (Selfishness is also a big part of the opposition to wind power and there too it is slowing essential and urgent action on climate change and related problems.)

The burning of coal and other fossil fuels is one of the main causes of climate change, ocean acidification, sea level rise and ocean warming, and millions of deaths worldwide each year from air pollution. Australia is one of the biggest exporters of coal in the world, it could justifiably be said the Australia's biggest and most important export is death, for all the harm that this is causing and will continue to cause in the future.

Trump, Abbott and Morrison have lied in attempting to justify their resistance to reducing emissions while Murdoch has run a multi-nation media empire that has consistently published lies and skepticism about climate change. I have written elsewhere on these pages about why everyone should accept the reality of what climate science is telling us.

World-wide there are few, if any, national leaders who have done as much as needs to be done to limit the damage of climate change and the associated ocean acidification.

What is needed?

If the climate change disaster is ever to be significantly limited we need national leaders who are willing to take visionary and responsible actions. Unfortunately this is not going to happen in democracies without voters looking beyond their immediate selfish advantage at the bigger picture; and as of the time of writing there is little sign of this happening.

Unjustified war

George Bush the younger, with encouragement and help from Prime Ministers Tony Blair of Britain and John Howard of Australia and no justification, invaded Iraq in 2003.
Acknowledgement: Russmo
US President George W. Bush together with Australia's PM Howard and Britain's PM Blair, were responsible for the illegal, unjustified, immoral, counter-productive and disastrous Iraq War started in March 2003.

At the time the main justification used for the invasion was that Iraq's President Saddam Hussein had 'weapons of mass destruction'. Even putting aside the point that the USA had more 'weapons of mass destruction' than any other nation on Earth there was never any good evidence that there were 'weapons of mass destruction' in Iraq, and investigations following the invasion were unable to find any.

The war resulted in millions of Iraqis becoming refugees and hundreds of thousands being killed, most not directly through the war, but by the subsequent destabilisation of Iraq, which has continued to the time of writing this page (April 2019).

Not only did Hussein have no 'weapons of mass destruction' there was never any evidence of a link between the Iraqi regime and the September 11th 2001 terrorist attack on the US Twin Towers that was also used as an excuse for the war. The invasion was illegal under international law which, since the Treaty of Westphalia in 1648, has held that one nation must not invade another except in the case of an indisputable and immediate threat from the invaded nation. It was no more justified than was the Nazi invasion of Czechoslovakia and Poland in the early part of World War Two.

How could the act of Bush, Blair and Howard in starting this war be considered anything other than criminal?

Finance industry

A Royal Commission into banking (which was at first strenuously resisted by the Turnbull Government and eventually allowed) showed a huge amount of unethical conduct by the Big Four Banks and the big financial services company AMP.

It has rightly been pointed out that if an individual robs a bank he goes to jail, but when banks rob individuals nobody goes to jail!