War Crimes are Felonies under U.S. Federal Criminal Law

War Crimes Act 1

In 1996, the United States Congress enacted the War Crimes Act, 18 U.S.C. §2441, “to carry out the international obligations of the United States under the Geneva Conventions to provide criminal penalties for certain war crimes.” §2441 provides:

    (a) Whoever, whether inside or outside the United States, commits a war crime, in any of the circumstances described in subsection (b), shall be fined under this title or imprisoned for life or any term of years, or both, and if death results to the victim, shall also be subject to the death penalty.
    (b) The circumstances referred to in subsection (a) are that the person committing such war crime or the victim of such war crime is a member of the Armed Forces of the United States or a national of the United States (as defined in section 101 of the Immigration and Nationality Act).
    (c) As used in this section the term “war crime” means any conduct (1) defined as a grave breach in any of the international conventions signed at Geneva 12 August 1949.

Applicable “grave breaches” under Article 147 of the Fourth Geneva Convention are:

  1. Unlawful deportation or transfer or unlawful confinement of a protected person
  2. Compelling a protected person to serve in the forces of an Occupying State,
  3. Willfully depriving a protected person of the rights of fair and regular trial
  4. Extensive destruction and appropriation of property, not justified by military necessity and carried out unlawfully and wantonly

Because §2441 (War Crimes Act) provides punishment to include life imprisonment or the death penalty, war crimes are felonies or high crimes as opposed to misdemeanors. Law enforcement officers are under a duty to arrest, without the need of a warrant, when the officer has probable cause to believe that the person has committed a felony, whether in the officer’s presence or otherwise.

The War Crimes Act is enforceable “outside” of U.S. territory when the United States military is the occupant of an occupied State. Title 18, U.S.C., §2441 reinforces the Lili`uokalani assignment, the 1907 Hague Convention, IV, the 1949 Geneva Convention, IV, and U.S. Army Field Manual 27-10 to criminally prosecute individuals who commit war crimes/felonies within Hawaiian territory.

18 thoughts on “War Crimes are Felonies under U.S. Federal Criminal Law

  1. This is good to know. I’m sure more kanaka would like to file war crime complaints. My intention would be to protect what little dignity, respect, kuleana and compassion we have in perpetuating the traditions & customs we were able to hold on to for the past 100 years on our aina.

    Aloha Aina!

  2. Aloha and thank you for the posting. We studied it and agree that the US is surrounded just by the laws and their actions…Dr. Sai, is a fisher of men in this case…The US failed with the Laws of Occupation, breaking treaties such as the two executive agreements, held our Queen and King in prison when they were fighting for their rights…and that’s been what happened to many Hawaiians who end up in prisons in Hawai’i and later transferred to US prisons, is a crime and not allowing them to have a fair trial, such as with the Larsen case where he lost his money, business and jobs for over 30 years of going to jail and courts also affected his health and common sense of things…it just goes on and on…so thanks again for this law…another tool in our bag of knowledge to share with the world. Mahalo Piha.

  3. Aloha Cuz, that is great news. Please keep us inform about what is happening with the ICC, are they in Hawaii yet?

  4. There’s been some confusion regarding March 4, 2012 and whether or not the International Criminal Court is coming to Hawai‘i. The ICC is not coming to Hawai‘i. In the blog entry “The Role of the ICC,” March 4 is the date when the ICC can initiate investigations into war crimes committed by individuals in the Hawaiian Islands, which include members of the United States Armed Forces, Hawaiian subjects, United States citizens, and other nationalities. As the ICC is a court of last resort, primary responsibility for criminal prosecutions is with the US Pacific Command. If and when the ICC Prosecutor begins her investigations, the Pacific Command itself will be subject to prosecutions as would other nationalities in the Hawaiian Kingdom. So there are two entities to watch for prosecutions and one will cancel the other out.

  5. Mahalo nunui hou for all of the brilliant and courageous work that you do!

    Is it lawful for the US flag to be flown above our kingdom flag?


  6. I feel helpless! I wish there was something more we could all do to help our
    people and country right now, tomorrow seems so far away!
    I feel so sick to my stomach that OHA and Kanai’olowalu fail to acknowledge the accurate account of our Hawaiian Kingdom’s history; rather than assisting Hawaiian nationals to achieve a unified goal of U.S. de-occupation they continue to mislead na po’e aloha aina on their quest toward self determinationnation.
    We are a sovereign nation OHA and have been since November 28, 1843, please find it in your hearts to do the right thing and kokua na po’e aloha aina.
    Sorry to single out OHA, but they have funding that perhaps could be better used by assisting Dr. Sai and his message to the world. Rather than supporting
    only self determination efforts, stay neutral and show some support for U.S. de-occupation, what do you have to loose? Your purpose is to assist Native Hawaiians, not a select group of Native Hawaiians! Help us!

  7. I guess we know who they are working for and that their here to support the wrong entity. We all are just trying to get back what is rightfully ours and Dr. Keanu Sai has researched the illegal take over of the Hawaiian Islands. Yes I agree and that if they want to, is to help fund his work for more studies and publish the right words and not change what really happened. Why do we all need to fight against each other that’s how we can’t succeed. We all need to pull together with UNITY and ALOHA ,WE WILL SUCCEED TO BE VICTORIOUS.

  8. I know of an ohana and others who, in 1966, by way of Eminent Domain, lost their land in lieu of a “State Park.” However, as of this date, the land remains in the same condition, actually worse because it has not been cared for, as when it was taken. Is there a way under the continuing conduct, practices and policies, to file claims for the illegal taking of land by the State? Can older cases “join” in with newer cases to show the continuing practice? I would appreciate any comments on how best to proceed with this situation.

  9. Keanu, Good Job!!! Sure hope the ICC is serious about this and not lobbied by the U.S. to stand down. Could this work with Monsanto, a major criminal poisoning our land, air, waters and people of Hawaii. Children on Kauai are getting sick. The GMO companies have been here far too long and have done way too much damage. Do you know of a way to do a ‘cease and desist, restraining order until an EIS, eviction? That would go a long way on our quest for sustainable agriculture. Let’s stop them now before irreversible damage is done and people start dying. It is just another form of genocide.

  10. e Hawaiian Kingdom, aloha,
    I need some help and hope you can direct me (us) in the right direction.
    I have been watching for the last three weeks, tapings of Kanaka Express shown on Positive Living, Channel 27 KPXO, every Tuesday morning at 5 a.m. (yes, I know — most people are still sleeping) but this is very important to share. The tapings are very, very informative and invaluable — featuring the guest panelists: Dexter Kaiama, esq., Dr. Keanu Sai, Ph.D. and Kale Gumapac, Host, Kanaka Express. The expertise provided by these individuals is priceless. Their explanation of the issues we face in our Hawaiian Kingdom is helping me understand a lot of what I am learning off the blog. As wonderful as it is, there’s a lot of information to absorb and some of it needs better clarification for me and perhaps others, too.
    I inquired to find out if the tapings were available anywhere else: (1) KPXO said the tapings were being shown on their channel by permission from the producer on `Olelo TV and didn’t know where else I could view them, (2) `Olelo, Channel 53, has showcased Kanaka Express since 2011 and is currently showing other repeat tapings on Friday nights at 11 p.m. which I already follow. They suggested I contact the producer of the show itself to get the information I requested, (3) the producer didn’t have any information for me either.
    Not everyone has the luxury of recording technology to neither watch at their leisure nor catch the show at 5:00 in the morning. I don’t know where I can go to find the information except using this blog to ask for help. There must be someone who knows how we can access these tapes. It’s so important.

  11. Two points of contention one should realize is that OHA is an alleged-State of Hawaii agency whose trustees are voted into office by the community-at-large and not by the kanaka maoli throughout the islands. Their purpose is not to represent the kanaka maoli but interests of the agency used for the questionable benefits of native Hawaiians. Like the Bureau of Indian affairs (BIA), it deals with controlling native American interests and concerns. It doesn’t protect native rights but manages funds it receives from U.S. governing entities.

    The U.S. has 21 registered and recognized political parties/entities with their own platforms and agendas and more special interest groups that lobby legislatures. Hawaii is no different. We may have various political entities/parties with their platforms and agendas and additionally other special interest groups. We all acknowledge we are Hawaiian Kingdom Subjects just as those U.S. Americans acknowledge they are U.S.A. citizens; no different. We are not divided. We subscribe to our kingdom national laws and international laws.

    Our mainstream society is Polynesian Hawaiian and the U.S. mainstream society is the racist WASP society. Our culture, customs and heritage is unique and different than the U.S. Keep these things in mind and speak from that POV rather than within the U.S. box of their self-controlling interests. Observe Hawaiian Kingdom laws and International laws.

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