Do Van Ngoc

This photograph, heavily cropped, shows nine-year-old Do Van Ngoc, naked on display in front of the Russell Tribunal in 1967. His genitalia is almost completely burnt away by napalm.

In August 1966 British philosopher Lord Bertrand Russell sent a letter to the American president Lyndon Johnson, informing the American administration that a charge was about to be made against the United States and its allies (i.e. Australia, New Zealand, and South Korea) in connection with the ongoing war in Vietnam. The letter begins as follows.

Dear President Johnson,

I write in connection with the International War Crimes Tribunal which has been under preparation for a period of time. This tribunal concerns the conduct of the war in Vietnam by the United States Government. Within living memory only the Nazis could be said to have exceeded in brutality the war waged by your administration against the people of Vietnam and it is because this war is loathed and condemned by the vast majority of mankind that demands are heard throughout the world for a formal international tribunal to hear the full evidence.

The Russell Tribunal, as this independent authority later became known, sought to inform the general public about the atrocities being committed in Southeast Asia, laying forth a massive bulk of information indicating systematic violence towards civilians, summary executions of prisoners, experimental weapons such as anti-personnel, napalm and fragmentary bombs used in campaigns directed at civilian, medical, educational, infrastructural, and religious facilities. Between 2 and 10 of May 1967, the independent, and self-appointed(!), tribunal convened in Stockholm, Sweden; a second series of proceedings followed in Roskilde, Denmark between 20 November and 1 December of the same year. The tribunal's main objective was to spread information about the aforementioned war crimes, and to raise public awareness in the hope of bolstering opposition against the war.