At a conference in Rome, nations from around the globe created the International Criminal Court to hold accountable and punish those responsible for genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity. When the moment of truth arrived for the United States, the United States opposed the formation of the International Criminal Court. Moreover, in response to the existence of the Court, the United States took measures to insulate itself from the jurisdiction of the Court by enacting the American Servicemembers' Protection Act. The United States justified its opposition and actions against the Court by stating that the Court was a fatally flawed system. The United States alleged the jurisdiction of the Court was too broad, that there were no checks on the Court to prevent politically motivated prosecutions and that the Court did not have the obligation to respect the Constitutional rights of U.S. citizens. An examination of the American Servicemembers' Protection Act reveals that it is ineffective in protecting U.S. citizens from the jurisdiction of the Court. Furthermore, the Rome Statute's articles, which established the International Criminal Court, do not support the legal arguments presented by the United States against the International Criminal Court. In sum, the United States does not have a valid basis for its opposition to the International Criminal Court.
Note, The Modern Version of the Shot Heard 'Round the World: America's Flawed Revolution against the International Criminal Court and the Rest of the World, 51 Clev. St. L. Rev. 263 (2004)