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Dr. Waller Conducts FBI Training

Dr. James Waller
Dr. James Waller

In September, James Waller, Cohen Professor of Holocaust and Genocide Studies and Director of Academic Programming for the Auschwitz Institute for Peace and Reconciliation (AIPR), was in Washington, DC, leading training and educational seminars for participants from various organizations within the US government, including Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the FBI, as part of an AIPR program. Among the presenters joining him was former HGS Lecturer and Judge of the War Crimes Chamber of the Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Hon. Patricia Whalen.

The forum, entitled “Building a Strong Foundation for International Human Rights Crimes Investigations,” was hosted by the Human Rights Violators and War Crimes Unit of ICE and the International Human Rights Unit of the FBI. Both units are charged to “identify, locate, investigate, and prosecute perpetrators of genocide, war crimes, and other related mass atrocities.”

Dr. James Waller outlined the Auschwitz Institute’s programs to prevent genocide and mass atrocities and introduced the concepts of genocide and other atrocity crimes to the forum participants. Judge Whalen presented on Legal Frameworks for Genocide and Atrocity Crimes Prevention, and Dr. Waller concluded the event with his presentation, “Becoming Evil: How Ordinary People Commit Genocide and Mass Atrocity.” This was particularly relevant for participants due to their involvement in the investigation of perpetrators of atrocity crimes, as understanding your target is essential for the administration of proper justice.

“Central to preventing genocide is the pursuit of accountability for perpetrators of genocide,” Dr. Waller explained. “The work of ICE and the FBI, in coordination with INTERPOL and other state and regional organizations, is central in making such accountability a reality and ensuring that would-be perpetrators of future atrocities recognize the world’s commitment to retributive justice. The deterrent impact of such justice is an important piece of genocide prevention, and I am honored to represent KSC and AIPR in that work.”

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