Does the International Criminal Court Target the American Military?

Daniel Krcmaric*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


American policymakers have been wary of the International Criminal Court (ICC) since its founding. United States' opposition is largely due to the fear that the ICC might initiate biased investigations that target members of the American military scattered across the globe. The recent ICC investigation into war crimes committed on Afghanistan's territory during the American occupation has produced a new surge of interest in this topic. But do ICC investigations, in fact, target America's military? Using a global sample of cases the ICC could plausibly investigate and data on the locations of all US foreign military installations, I examine how the presence of American troops in a country affects the likelihood of an ICC investigation. Contrary to the common narrative of anti-American bias, the estimated effects of US military presence are statistically indistinguishable from zero and substantively negligible. These results highlight the need to rethink America's combative approach to the ICC.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)325-331
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Political Science Review
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 16 2023

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Political Science and International Relations


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