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The Reckoning

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Get Involved with International Justice

The Reckoning, a feature-length documentary, follows the team of prosecutors and investigators at the International Criminal Court (ICC) — the first permanent, international court created to prosecute perpetrators, no matter how powerful, of crimes against humanity, war crimes and genocide — for three years as they work on cases in Colombia, Sudan, Uganda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

As the film relates, the ICC is not without controversy. Although 109 countries have joined the court as members, the United States, China and Russia have declined. No matter what your opinion of the ICC might be, below are some ways that you can take action in the fight for international justice.

  • Visit IJCentral if you want to join a global social network about the international justice movement, join in its action campaigns and follow it on Twitter.

  • Contact your elected federal officials and let them know what you want them to do about the United States joining the ICC.

  • Convene a study group or teach-in on a pending case before the ICC or on a case that you think should be tried by the ICC. Find public ways (online or at community events) to share what you learn.

  • Benjamin Ferencz challenges viewers to "never stop trying to make it a humane world." Brainstorm a list of things that you could do to make this a more humane world. Then choose one thing from the list and commit to doing it.

  • Hold a speak-out to create an opportunity for victims of human rights abuses to share their stories. Help connect speakers and their families with support services in your community.

  • Use issues from the film as the basis for a classroom debate or public forum. Consider the following as premises for debate:
    1. The ICC's warrants for leaders of the LRA are impeding Uganda's peace process and should be withdrawn.
    2. Colombia should not extradite suspected paramilitary leaders to the United States to face drug charges, because extradition to a non-member state will impede the ICC investigation.
    3. The United Nations should enforce the arrest warrant for Sudan's president.

  • Join with existing human rights organizations to support applications for asylum by those fleeing from human rights abuses such as those in our resource section on page 34 of the POV Discussion Guide (PDF).
 

Get informed about the issues in the film and lead a discussion in your community.

Discussion Guide

Discussion Guide

To date, more than 100 countries have ratified the Rome Statute, the treaty that governs the International Criminal Court (ICC) — the first permanent, international court created to prosecute perpetrators of crimes against humanity, war crimes and genocide. This model of international cooperation makes The Reckoning an excellent springboard for discussion, prompting viewers to think through the same issues with which the ICC must grapple.

Lesson Plan

Lesson Plan

This lesson plan is designed to be used with the film, The Reckoning: The Battle for the International Criminal Court, which tells the history of this judicial body and the struggles it has faced since it was organized in 2002. Classrooms can use this film to explore U.S. policy related to the International Criminal Court (ICC).

Reading List

Delve Deeper

This multimedia resource list includes books, films and other materials related to the issues presented in The Reckoning. Learn more about crimes of war, the struggle for human rights and the possibilities for the International Criminal Court.

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[T]he film is about accountability. It's about bringing the perpetrators of the worst crimes happening in the world to justice.”

— Pamela Yates, Filmmaker

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