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by Stephen Lendman
Monday, Apr. 07, 2014 at 12:10 AM
Israeli Supremes Endorse War Crimes
by Stephen Lendman
They didn't surprise. They're like US Supremes. They support wealth, power and privilege. They rubber-stamp war crimes when asked.
They ignore fundamental rule of law principles. Israel High Court justices declined to hear petitioner Marwan Dalal.
He's an Israeli Arab jurist. Earlier he served as a Hague International Criminal Court senior prosecutor. He's the only Palestinian ever to serve in this capacity.
On April 2, Israeli Supremes heard evidence of IDF war crimes in Lebanon and Gaza. A previous article explained.
Dalal filed a 52-page petition. He addressed Israel's:
• preemptive 2006 Lebanon war;
• its Operation Cast Lead Gaza aggression (December 2008 - January 2009,) and
• murdering nine Turkish Mavi Marmara Gaza humanitarian mission activists in May 2010 in cold blood.
Evidence against Israel is damning. It's overwhelming. It's indisputable. It's incontestable. Systematic coverup followed.
Israel remains unaccountable for high crimes too grave to ignore. On April 3, Israeli Supremes rubber-stamped approval.
They ruled crimes of war and against humanity are OK. Their terse statement lied saying:
"The petitioner didn't provide enough evidence that could prove the connection between the respondents and the events that, as the petitioner sees them, could be called 'war crimes.' "
From July 12 - August 14, Israel attacked Lebanon preemptively. It blitzkrieged large areas mercilessly. It did so lawlessly.
It killed over 1,000. It caused vast destruction. It displaced around one-fourth of Lebanon's four million population. It willfully targeted civilians.
It admitted doing so. It called them legitimate targets. It defined its Dahiya Doctrine strategy. It's named after a Beirut suburb. Israel destroyed it entirely.
At the time, it said it's how future wars would be fought. Disproportionate force will be used against civilians and non-military-related infrastructure.
Doing so reflects prohibited collective punishment. International law forbids attacking non-combatants and targets unrelated to military necessary.
Beirut, Tyre, Sidon, and other Lebanon cities and towns were attacked.
Terror bombings destroyed or damaged ports, Beirut International Airport, roads, bridges, other infrastructure, schools, hospitals, power stations, commercial sites, factories, dams, civilian neighborhoods, government buildings, mosques, churches, radio and TV stations, an orphanage, Sidon's refugee camp and other non-military targets.
Jiyeh’s utility plant south of Beirut was struck. Doing so caused massive oil spillage. Over 90 miles of coastal waters were affected.
Biodiversity was damaged. Heightened cancer risk followed. Many thousands of Lebanese remain vulnerable.
A land, sea and air siege was imposed. Illegal weapons were used. They included depleted uranium, chemical agents, as well as white phosphorous bombs and shells. They burn flesh to the bone.
So-called thermobaric bombs were dropped. They contain polymer-bonded or solid fuel-air explosives. They penetrate buildings, underground shelters and tunnels.
Their blast pressure sucks oxygen out of affected areas. It horrifically affects people in them. It’s a terror weapon designed to kill and destroy monstrously.
On July 19, a bus carrying Israeli tourists and others was attacked. Eight deaths were reported.
It bears repeating. Israeli war crimes were indisputable. Lawless collective punishment is longstanding Israeli practice. It persists daily. It does so in multiple ways.
From December 27, 2008 - January 18, 2009, Israel waged lawless aggression on Gaza. On September 15, 2009, Goldstone Commission findings were damning.
It reported "evidence indicating serious violations of international human rights and humanitarian law committed by Israel during the Gaza conflict, and that Israel committed actions amounting to war crimes, and possibly crimes against humanity."
"While the Israeli Government has sought to portray its operations as essentially a response to rocket attacks in the exercise of its right of self defence, the Mission considers the plan to have been directed, at least in part, at a different target: the people of Gaza as a whole."
Defensive rocket attacks responded to repeated Israeli provocations. Israel lawlessly used them as a pretext for naked aggression. Operation Cast Lead followed.
On September 21, 2010, the UN Human Rights Council (HRC) said:
It's clear "that the IDF had not distinguished between civilians and civilian objects and military targets."
"Both the loss of life and the damage to property were disproportionate to the harm suffered by Israel or any threatened harm. Israel's actions could not be justified as self-defense."
"The IDF was responsible for the crime of killing, wounding and terrorizing civilians (as well as) wonton(ly) destr(oying) property and that such destruction could not be justified on grounds of military necessity."
HRC members called IDF crimes so grave, "it was compelled to consider whether (genocide) had been committed."
It said Israel "committed war crimes, crimes against humanity and, possibly genocide in the course of Operation Cast Lead."
On May 31, 2010, lawlessly interdicted Freedom Flotilla vessels in international waters. Doing so constitutes piracy. They were bringing vitally needed aid to besieged Gazans.
Nine Turkish nationals were aboard the Mavi Marmara mother ship. They were massacred in cold blood. Dozens of other activists on board were wounded. Everyone was arrested.
At the time, UK-based Stop the War Coalition activists called it "(y)et another act of Israeli barbarism." Thousands of Gazans protested angrily.
Mass anti-Israeli protests followed in Amman, Cairo, Damascus, Tehran, Ankara, Istanbul, Beirut and other regional cities.
Israel's propaganda machine reached new highs of duplicity. Damage control prioritized coverup. Big Lies drowned out truth.
Forensic evidence was damning. Victims were shot multiple times at close range. Some in the back.
A Human Rights Council (HRC) investigation criticized Israel's "outrageous attack on aid ships attempting to breach a blockade on the Gaza Strip."
It called doing so "piracy, (an) act of aggression, (a) brutal massacre, (an) act of terrorism, (a) war crime, (a) crime against humanity, unprovoked...unwarranted...atrocious, (and) brutal."
It said humanitarian activists onboard were "peaceful, innocent, noble, unarmed, (and) defenseless."
Attacking them "was unnecessary, disproportionate, excessive, inappropriate and resulted in the wholly avoidable killing and maiming of a large number of civilian passengers."
"Israel made "a deliberate attempt...to suppress or destroy evidence." Its own version of events was fabricated. Fake videos were used. So were other falsified materials.
Crimes against humanity were committed. So was piracy. HRC members called Israeli guilty as charged.
It said "a series of violations of international law, including international humanitarian and human rights law, were committed by the Israeli forces during the interception of the flotilla and during the detention of passengers in Israel prior to deportation."
"The preponderance of evidence from impeccable sources is far too overwhelming to come to a contrary opinion."
Attacking Mavi Marmara activists was well-planned in advance. Premeditated murder was indisputable.
Israeli commandos had photos of Turkish nationals marked for death. They murdered them in cold blood.
They remain unaccountable. So do Israeli commanders and responsible government officials.
No Israeli official or military commander was held accountable for Lebanon and Cast Lead war crimes. None for earlier acts of aggression.
None for daily crimes against humanity. None for ongoing ones. None since Israel was established in 1948.
None for decades of systematic slow-motion genocide. Israeli Supremes continued a longstanding tradition.
They turned a blind eye to high crimes too grave to ignore. They endorsed what demands accountability. Perhaps one day. For sure not now.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at email@example.com.
His new book is titled "Banker Occupation: Waging Financial War on Humanity."
Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com.
Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.
It airs three times weekly: live on Sundays at 1PM Central time plus two prerecorded archived programs.
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