In a decade defined by fake news, nations have weaponized disinformation to attack political, legal, and social systems throughout the world. Specifically, in recent years, government leaders have spread fake news about the International Criminal Court (“ICC”) in efforts to turn public opinion against the ICC and deter its attempts to investigate and prosecute controversial cases. Given the ICC’s reliance on state party cooperation, not only does this use of fake news hamper the Court’s likelihood of successfully prosecuting crimes that are of most concern to the international community, but it also promotes a version of history that denies victims both truth and justice. This paper will specifically examine how the governments of the United States and Israel have utilized fake news to deter ongoing ICC investigations into crimes allegedly committed by U.S. and Israeli nationals, and the detrimental effects of these news campaigns. This paper will then identify changes necessary to better protect the ICC—and international criminal law more generally—against fake news campaigns, including the need for greater clarity and widespread global knowledge of the ICC’s powers and jurisdictional reach.

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