Analysis News

international law

  • NGO Monitor steps up the absurdity of its attacks

    A lie travels around the world while the truth looks for a Wi-Fi connection. Sometimes, it finds it. This blog's favorite fibber organization, NGO Monitor - you may remember them from such classic favorites as distributing Hasbara lies about the UN Human Rights Commission, using a Trojan horse inside Wikipedia, as well as just stupid negligence - pounced on the tunnel that was found this week near Ein Hashlosha. The organization quickly took to twitter, saying "So, #Hamas terror tunnel was built w/concrete from #Israel, sent b/c of UN & NGO pressure. Thanks @Gisha_Access". Lies have the speed advantage: in a…

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  • How Israel increases its odds of international prosecution

    When the criminal records of IDF war criminals are expunged, the government puts them in danger of being tried abroad. By Yesh Din, written by Yossi Gurvitz Last week Yesh Din published a new report,"Lacuna: War Crimes in Israeli Law and Court Martial Rulings." It deals with the way the military justice system handles offenses that are in effect war crimes. One of the issues discussed is the criminal records of soldiers convicted of offenses of this kind. In 2011 the Knesset enacted Amendment No. 61 of the Military Justice Act. It's pretty complicated, but can be summed up by…

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  • Resource: War crimes in Israeli law

    Israel has not yet enacted a law defining war crimes, and the military courts judge soldiers who violate the rules of law according to “regular” offenses. Yesh Din's new report presents the need for Israeli legislation on this subject. The approach currently applied in Israel argues that ordinary domestic legislation is adequate for the prosecution of defendants for actions constituting war crimes. The report reviews international models for legislation criminalizing war crimes and discusses the existing provisions in Israeli law, the policy of the military prosecution, and the rulings of military courts. Yesh Din is a volunteer organization working to…

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  • If this isn't apartheid, then what is it?

    We do not need to find identical practices to those prevailing in pre-1994 South Africa in order to determine whether apartheid exists elsewhere. By Ran Greenstein For a few years now, opinion pieces and articles in the South African and Israeli press have shown confusion regarding the meaning of the comparison between Israel and apartheid South Africa. How can we sort out the conceptual mess that afflicts the debates around the issue? First, let us examine the meaning of apartheid. The term defines the race-based regime of political domination and social marginalisation that ruled South Africa from 1948 to 1994. Alongside…

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  • Political solution or not, the bottom line is equal rights for all

    The military law applied to Palestinians must provide rights and protections no less favorable than those afforded to Israeli citizens living in the settlements. By Gerard Horton Last month, Israeli housing minister Uri Ariel announced the approval of 1,200 more houses for settlers in East Jerusalem and the West Bank, adding to the 520,000 already living there, including Mr. Ariel himself. Only time will tell, but this announcement, like the many that proceeded, may one day prove to contain a fatal sting in the tail for the idea of Israel as a democratic state with a Jewish majority. For there is…

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  • Justice denied: Prolonged occupation and Palestinian child detainees

    With a political process that consistently demands peace without justice, Palestinian children living in the occupied territories have been denied justice at almost every turn. By Brad Parker Israel seldom holds its officials and individual perpetrators accountable for violations of Palestinian human rights, particularly against children. The resulting impunity grants Israeli forces a license to expand, rather than curb, violations systemic to Israel’s 46-year-old military occupation. Just last week, five-year-old Wadi’a Maswadeh, a Palestinian boy from the West Bank city of Hebron, was detained for nearly two hours after reportedly throwing a stone at a passing Israeli settler car. Notwithstanding…

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  • Israeli plan to offload Eritreans: An affront to international law

    Israel’s supposed plan to send tens of thousands of Eritrean asylum seekers to an unspecified African country raises enormous humanitarian, human rights and political concerns. The 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees recognizes that: …the grant of asylum may place unduly heavy burdens on certain countries, and that a satisfactory solution of a problem of which the United Nations has recognized the international scope and nature cannot therefore be achieved without international co-operation… This is another way of saying that countries bordering conflict zones – often poor and unstable themselves – tend to endure the primary burden of…

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  • Investigating Gaza flotilla deaths would sacrifice International Criminal Court's legitimacy

    The violent takeover of the Mavi Marmara simply does not stack up to other violent mass executions of passive civilians. Referring a relatively minor incident to the ICC in the context of a highly politically charged conflict would confirm the suspicions that the court is no more than a political wolf camouflaged in the neutral trappings of criminal justice. By Noam Wiener On May 14, the Union of Comoros, represented by Turkish attorneys, sent the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) a referral requesting it commence an investigation into Israeli conduct, due to alleged war crimes and crimes against humanity. The…

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  • The quiet population transfer that dares not speak its name

    A quiet phenomenon has been taking place over the last decade: the quiet dispossession of the Palestinians from their lands, which in turn increases their despair and leads them to abandon their villages. All this is done in our name and with our funds, but the government makes certain Israelis remain ignorant of the facts. By Yesh Din, written by Yossi Gurvitz Yesh Din published one of most comprehensive reports, The Road to Dispossession (which has its own mini-site), dealing with the illegal outpost Adei Ad. The outpost sits between four Palestinian villages and robs them of their lands. The information we gathered…

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  • The lie of 'state lands': Whitewashing the confiscation of Palestinian land

    The outpost of Derekh Avot, sitting on stolen Palestinian land, will soon be whitewashed and its lands will magically turn into 'state lands' which will be delivered to the settlers. By Yesh Din, written by Yossi Gurvitz A letter from the Officer of the Legal Advisor of the Commander, Judea and Samaria Area – the name the IDF attached to the West Bank - arrived recently at Yesh Din's offices. The letter said that soon, the Custodian of Government Property intends to announce the lands on which the outpost of Derekh Avot is located as Public Lands (commonly known as…

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  • The Turkel Committee report: Better late than never

    The Turkel Committee seems to be quietly telling the government, 'We've let it slide, this time, but goddamit, you shouldn't expect such a miracle next time. Here's a bunch of recommendations you'd better implement if you want a chance, should you find yourself in front of a real committee.' By Yesh Din, written by Yossi Gurvitz There's reason to welcome the second part of the Turkel Committee's report – you remember the Turkel Committee, the one created to investigate the killing on the Mavi Marmara in May 2010. Well, almost three years after the event, the Committee published the second…

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  • A week in photos: October 11-17

    Olive harvests in the West Bank, protests against settler violence, refugees from Israel to Germany demonstrate for the their rights, and more: Activestills images tell the stories of the week.                    

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  • Re-thinking the role of international law in the Middle East conflict

    The fact that international law supports the two-state paradigm is not sufficient reason to preserve its current role, if at present, international law serves to perpetuate the conflict.  International law is increasingly being applied when deemed relevant to an ideological agenda, and therefore its impact is limited.   By David Hughes In response to former Justice Edmond Levy’s report on the status of the West Bank, Itamar Mann considers Levy’s controversial proposal that Israel’s presence in the West Bank does not amount to an occupation. Mann's position is surprising: perhaps easing the collective fixation on the terminology of occupation “will enable…

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