Yesterday was the anniversary of the death of my old girlfriend Bettina Erika Pruckmayr, who was killed during a botched mugging on December 16, 1995 in Washington DC. She was a tireless and passionate fighter for human rights who was one of the first of our generation to devote her career to the cause of the International Criminal Court (ICC).
The painful irony is that Bettina, who worked so hard to create a new system of global justice, was killed because of a failure of the US criminal justice system. Her assailant was a man who was released on early parole after serving only 17 years of his 60-year sentence for committing a similar crime. And sadder still, Bettina would not live to see the establishment of the ICC, created by international treaty adopted on July 17, 1998.
While I still grieve your passing, Bettina, I count myself fortunate to have known you during your too-brief life. And I rededicate myself to working toward the more just, peaceful world you fought for. Love, Rik