Hague Redemption 132


I am delighted that Palestine has finally applied to join the International Criminal Court. It is over three years since I blogged in recommendation that Palestine do this, and I have been somewhat baffled as to why it has taken so long to take a step which much of the international legal and human rights community has been so long urging. My own contacts into PLO circles (which do not rise above middling level) indicated simply that the leadership view was that “the time was not yet right”.

This delay was but one indicator of the powerlessness of the Abbas position, obliged to pay lip service to a US-led “peace process” which he knows to be an utter sham, and bullied by Blair and Obama into comparative quiescence by the threat of cutting off international lifelines to the beleaguered Palestinian people. But there should never have been any doubt that quiescence would result in continuing but deadly sure, slow strangulation. Intelligent pro-activity, such as joining the ICC, is a far better option.

For Obama to describe Palestinian accession to the International Criminal Court as “provocative” is ludicrous. How can it be provocative to seek to come under the jurisdiction of international law? It is US and Israeli exceptionalism that is a standing provocation to the international community.

We will now see what the ICC actually is. As a strong supporter of the rule of international law, I was reluctant to join the criticism of the ICC which notes it is active only against those condemned by the West. But the ICC’s inaction over the illegal invasion of Iraq remains inexcusable. It’s African trials conveniently ignore the colonial context. For example, the root cause of the ethnic violence in Kenya was white appropriation of the best farming land which evicted indigenous tribes into the territory of other tribes, causing resource conflict which still echoes. The ICC’s interest in Africa also carefully avoids the West’s preferred dictators and mineral grabs.

The ICC has already failed a key test where it declined to take action over the murderous Israeli assault on the Mavi Mamara on the grounds that the scale of the war crime was insufficient to reach the bar of the Court’s attention. That was not an incorrect legal argument, but an activist court could have gone either way.

The illegal Israeli settlements and murderous invasions of Gaza cannot be ruled inconsequent. Now the ICC has a chance to show whether it really is interested in the rule of international law, or whether it is simply a tool of neo-conservative hegemony.

The World is watching. Can The Hague redeem itself?


132 thoughts on “Hague Redemption

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  • CanSpeccy

    For Obama to describe Palestinian accession to the International Criminal Court as “provocative” is ludicrous.

    Most of what Obama says is ludicrous. That’s because he’s a puppet of America’s plutocratic elite, which has a contempt for virtually everything that the United States claims to stand for — democracy, the rule of law, and the US Constitution.

    Since America’s plutocratic elite is largely Zionist, Puppet Obama has to back Israel’s racist nationalism and its program of slow-motion ethnic cleansing of the indigenous people of Palestine and that means opposing Palestinian membership of the ICC.

    It would be astonishing, however, if the International Criminal Court did anything notably helpful to the Palestinian people. Like virtually all the international institutions, the ICC will always be found to serve the interests of the globalist plutocracy, which appears intent on the destruction of all nationalisms except that of Israel.

    The Palestinians best bet would be emigration. That’s something Obama would surely support. Legal or otherwise, he is clearly in favor of mass immigration to the US by all and sundry. Why not, therefore, a couple of million Palestinians to the US, with the rest going to the other self-genocidal Anglo-Zionist states, Britain, Canada and Australia?

  • giyane

    Habbaceous borderline IDF terrorist

    You’ll be saying Islamic State is a state next. Get used to it. Not. The USUKIS IS are off to Turkey next, the compass set to the former Soviet satellites.

    Israel is an outpost satellite of Anglo neo-colonialism and ISIS is its robot mind-controlled genocidal landing probe. You worked on them both, so are either of them states?

  • Clark

    CanSpeccy 11:11 pm

    “… the globalist plutocracy … appears intent on the destruction of all nationalisms except that of Israel.”

    1) A fair bit of effort was put towards preserving “British” last year.

    2) People with conditions and/or interests in common will always form geographically grouped identities, I reckon.

    3) Israel is no different – a load of people are being encouraged to go there and call themselves nationals, just like you say happens in “Britain, Canada and Australia”. Nowhere else?

    4) Even in your scenario, you end up with “Israel” and the rest of the world, whatever that comes to call itself.

    Ultimately, a global identity of Humanity has to emerge – modern communication and ease of travel make it inevitable.

  • CanSpeccy

    @Giyanne

    CanSpeccy.

    You wish.

    I don’t wish. But I’m tired of bullshit schemes that will obviously go nowhere, and the ICC will do nothing for the Palestinians.

    Therefore, either the Palies must accept continued ethnic cleansing, manage somehow to turn the tables on Israel militarily, which seems impossible, or get out now and start life anew elsewhere rather than wait to be driven out after much further suffering.

    If Zionists around the world were then to go to Israel to take the place of the Palestinians that would be a plus, and might make the world a slightly less tumultuous place.

    Obviously, I am not enthusiastic about a flood of Palestinians going to Britain, Canada, etc., but they would be genuine refugees, deserving therefore to be at the head of the queue for admission.

    Best, I suppose, would be if one of the larger countries offered the Palestinians a homeland. Crimea would be a good place. for the Palestinians to occupy the original homeland of the Askenazi Jews, while make room for the same in their own homeland would seem like an elegant solution.

  • ben

    The ICC is just another bureaucracy and we know how they work. I would like to hear frkm stalwart supporters who seem to think 5 eyes are dreadfully fearful of the geldings of international action.

  • John Goss

    UU 4 Jan, 2015 – 4:14 pm

    When I briefly studied international law it soon became clear that the main obstacle to enforcing it was the nation state. Francis A. Boyle is a sound international lawyer. The subtitle to one of his latest books is “The Three-Decade US Campaign to Terminate the Qaddafi Revolution” and although as an international lawyer he got everything right Libya is a ‘failed state’, Qaddafi has been silenced, as Saddam was before him, and the rule of international law has not been exercised.

    Success stories against powerful states even in the ICJ are few and far between. Nicaragua had a limited one in 1986.

    http://www.icj-cij.org/docket/?sum=367&p1=3&p2=3&case=70&p3=5

    In 2004 it found (advisory) that Israel had no right to deprive Palestinians of free movement and the right to education. In my opinion the ICJ has no more power than the ICC. I can find no cases brought against the US and UK in the ICJ for war crimes since 2003. Judgements can be given, and they are always going to be advisory, but if the country decides it will flout them, as with Israel and its nuclear weapons, the world is powerless to enforce the law. So neither the ICC or ICJ has any real power.

    In Boyle’s “Destroying Libya and World Order” there is a chapter (4) “Resolving the Lockerbie Dispute by means of International Law” in which he claims that Libya had complied with the Montreal Sabotage Convention, whereas the US and UK had violated it. One day, if this ever gets to be heard at a proper international court, it will be shown, I believe, that Bernt Carlsson was the target of the sabotage, that the bomb, possibly even a second bomb, was introduced at Heathrow, and that the CIA knew this bombing was going to take place before its execution. The world’s secret services are going to try and detract from the real issue of whistleblower Bernt Carlsson being the target. He was hardly mentioned in the first trial, at a faux court set up at a US military base which became “Scottish soil” in which Libya was forced to comply or suffer further sanctions, and the US and UK bludgeoned this through the UN rather than taking the proper procedure of going through the World Court (ICJ). The tragedy was that an innocent man, Abdelbaset al-Megrahi, spent all those years in prison until, dying of cancer he was released “on compassionate grounds.” Cameron, Miliband, Clegg and SNP leader, Alex Salmond still claim al-Megrahi was the bomber and would not sanction an independent Inquiry, let alone a court case.

    Despite your optimism, UU, until we get International Courts with teeth, and the will to enforce, we are stuck with ineffective channels in a search for justice. That will not come until the multi-trillion debt-laden imperialists, who lend billions to other countries, is defunct. 🙂

  • Mark Golding

    Can The Hague redeem itself?

    Weather permitting the hall at the International Criminal Court in the Hague will be packed some time soon as the trial begins of former US Vice President Richard Bruce Cheney:

    John O’Neill was good, astute, penetrating, he made ‘group 19’ nervous when working within ‘Able Danger’ – he found discrepancies in the US nuclear weapons inventory, the mini-nukes. He had a lose mouth, was extroverted and dammit, fearless, unafraid of ‘the frighteners’ when confronted.

    Lured to head-up WTC security it was an easy task to muzzle him, for ever! Nonetheless what he knew was shared, obviously.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DUS1ubhalhk#t=153

  • OldMark

    The problems here are the following:-

    1. You are sounding quite reasonable.

    2. The US and UK and others for several decades have been aware of the difference between legal/illegal and reasonable/unreasonable. What has happened is that Camp David onwards negotiations have been wholly lopsided. The Palestinians who were now thought to be the tame ones ( PLO – post Arafat) are now the ones who are compelled by their own people to open their eyes to the constructed futility and adopt a different course.

    You do not need to have studied international law to understand that:-If at all I am incorrect at any point at A,B, or C above – please anyone – correct me – why and how so.

    Courtenay Barnett- you’ve identified the problem there in a nutshell. To which Res Diss replies with some blather- ‘Perhaps there becomes a point when people on both sides realise the futility of what they both are doing’, which completely ignores the fact that, from a Zionist perspective, the flouting of international law in respect of settlement activity is far from ‘futile’. It is a means to an end- the Judaisation of ‘Judea and Samaria’ and thus the full realisation of the ‘Zionist dream’.

  • OldMark

    A. Land is being settled on stolen ( the settlements are patently – illegal)
    B. The US has no honest role to play to state the obvious at A. above; so
    C. There is no hope but – confrontation and – war going forward.

    I need a refresher in cutting and pasting- apologies for overlooking this crucial summary of Courtnenay Barnett’s argument in the post above.

  • CanSpeccy

    As this map shows, in 70 odd years the Palestinians have lost 90% of their land. Give it another 20 years of so and we will have no more of this tedious debate about the Israel-Palestine conflict. The indigenous people of Palestine, mostly descendants of Jewish converts to Islam, will have been entirely squeezed out, replaced by Khazerian converts to Judaism. In the meantime, the sole purpose of all the blather by Chomsky and the rest is make sure nothing is actually done to impede the genocidal process.

  • UU

    M. Goss, thank you for calling me optimistic, as I didn’t feel optimistic when I wrote that. Usually people say I’m in despair when I think I’m being cheerful. Over the long run, the optimistic case is clear. The ICJ, the PCA, the ICC, the draft principles on state responsibility for internationally wrongful acts, treaty bodies, charter bodies, special procedures, universal jurisdiction, all these individual implementations of the Nuremberg Code collectively bind the US regime more and more, like the threads the Liliputians used to tie Gulliver down. That steady progress, in combination with dwindling US importance to the G-77, NAM, CELAC, AU, and SCO gradually curb US criminality. It will take generations, and I’m not sure we have generations. But it’s two steps forward for one step back.

  • Paul Barbara

    Forgive me if this has already been covered; I had a quick look, and couldn’t see any reference to it:
    ‘Israel freezes Palestinian tax funds over international criminal court move’: http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/jan/03/israel-tax-payments-withhold-palestine-international-criminal-court
    Of the Western MSM covering the story that I could find yesterday, NOT ONE had a ‘comments’ section!! They KNOW how the commenters would overwhelmingly have responded, so they don’t give them a chance.

  • Mary

    Paul Barbara Yes the Israeli withholding of tax revenues has been mentioned here and on the previous thread.

    ~~~~~~

    Verboten Views

    by RT / January 4th, 2015

    ‘Gilad Aztmon is a lightning rod for controversy. He is fervently anti-Zionist, and because of the Zionist crimes committed by Jews, he has disavowed himself of being a Jew. It is not surprising, therefore, that he even gets attacked even by those who profess to be progressives.1 For Gilad Atzmon, dissent and a media soapbox are verboten. But not for RT, hosted by another lightning rod for controversy, George Galloway.

    They engage in an intensive discussion on Jewish ID politics, Palestine, false terminology, The Left and whatever is Left, also jazz, saxophone, and beyond.’

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z8I-humd2N0 13 mins

    http://dissidentvoice.org/2015/01/verboten-views/
    4 January 2015

  • Resident Dissident

    “The indigenous people of Palestine, mostly descendants of Jewish converts to Islam, will have been entirely squeezed out, replaced by Khazerian converts to Judaism.”

    The majority of the Jewsih Israeli population are now Shephardim – one might ask what made them leave their homes for Israel.

  • nevermind

    maybe someone more educated and appropriate would like to comment on a phenomena, never heard before.
    Worldwide, economic students are revolting, some are striking, others have left their studies in disgust due to the control that is exercised on them.
    The issue? teaching economics and the relations to reality, nobody wants to teach the real reasons behind the last crash, why it could have been avoided, what bankers jobs are really about, what bankers jabs are all about, the ins and outs of banking.

    They are offered a homogeneous straight school model, but not in relation to what is happening in reality.
    I touched upon this a few times here that unsustainable economics cannot produce a sustainable society and system, unless our financial system is based on real values and assets, it is impossible to live sustainable.

    http://www.theguardian.com/education/2013/nov/18/academics-back-student-protests-neoclassical-economics-teaching

  • Ba'al Zevul

    The majority of the Jewish Israeli population are now Sephardim

    Point of order-

    Maybe so, but the country is still firmly controlled by Ashkenazim. And, possibly moved by a wish not to be regarded as second-class citizens, Sephardim have to some extent assimilated to the Askenazi community:

    http://www.jcpa.org/dje/articles3/sephardic.htm
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-shasha/sephardim-ashkenazim-and_b_615692.html

    The “squeezing out” of the Sephardim is not physical, but cultural. And it is even consensual.

  • Mary

    Repellent suggestions for the Palestinians from Can Speccy. A modern day version of a final solution? How dare he.

  • nevermind

    ‘The indigenous people of Palestine, mostly descendants of Jewish converts to Islam, will have been entirely squeezed out, replaced by Khazerian converts to Judaism.”’

    The indigenous people as they exist today, you mean, not in 1948 or before, when there was a massive Arab majority in Palestine, now ethnically cleansed by Apartheid.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Repellent suggestions for the Palestinians from Can Speccy. A modern day version of a final solution? How dare he.

    Easily. He’s merely reflecting the facts on the ground, as created intentionally by the Israeli government, over decades. This is what Israel wants to happen, and I’m not seeing any sign of anyone intervening effectively to stop it. It’s evil, unjust and wrong, but it’s happening. And there isn’t even a Plan B.

    Canspeccy is evidently of the opinion that protest and outrage haven’t changed and can’t change the situation, absent any manifestations of justice from the US, which backs Israel all the way (as do our own Bullingdon poodles, and their ‘opposition’.)

    And I can certainly see his point – though I can’t see Putin welcoming a couple of million pretty pissed-off Muslims into Crimea…perhaps it’s time we all woke up and smelled the ersatz coffee?

  • OldMark

    ‘Repellent suggestions for the Palestinians from Can Speccy. A modern day version of a final solution? How dare he.

    Easily. He’s merely reflecting the facts on the ground, as created intentionally by the Israeli government, over decades. This is what Israel wants to happen, and I’m not seeing any sign of anyone intervening effectively to stop it.’

    Spot on Komodo. Israel has never been interested in relinquishing most of the territory of the West Bank- but under no circumstances can it formally annex all of it, as to do so would make it impossible for the state of Israel to maintain the illusion that it is simultaneously both a Jewish and a democratic state. Some variant on the Allon Plan has always been the only outcome any Israeli government (Labour/Likud/Kadima or whatever) is prepared to agree, and to some extent the ‘peace process’ (as defined, inter alia, by the US and Tony Blair) is simply an act of kabuki that obscures this fact.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allon_Plan

  • Rehmat

    Mahmoud Abbas, a known Palestinian “double agent” is trying to fool the nine million Palestinians. He has no intention of challenging his masters in Washington and Tel Aviv. He “application” to join ICC is a ridiculous as his recently failed attempt to join the United Nations. Furthermore, Israel and its Godfather United States are not even members of ICC.

    Practically, ICC is not an independent judical body. It was created, like the United Nations, to look after the interests of the five UNSC Veto-power regimes and their willing-partners – as is case with the US, which has used more veto (38) to protect the interests of the Zionazi state than its own national interests. There are 110 States Party to ICC – but the leaders of the five veto-power countries are immune to prosection by the ICC. In addition any state can reject ICC jurisdiction if it chooses so as the US and Israel have done. But, interestingly, its jurisdiction can be extended to any country on the behest of the UNSC’s five permanent members as was done in the case of Sudan.

    On July 12, 2002 – the US got Resolution 1422 passed – giving immunity to American nationals working as UN peacekeepers from ICC prosecution for their crimes against other nations no matter how barbaric they maybe. The US government is known to force agreement upon States, which are parties to the Statute under which these states are committed not to surrender American criminals to the ICC. So far, over 100 foreign states has been bribed or blackmailed by Washington to follow this.

    Last year, the International Criminal Court (ICC) has turned down a request from victims of clergy sexual abuse to investigate Vatican officials and their responsibility for the abuse of children by Catholic priests around the world.

    http://rehmat1.com/2013/06/23/icc-refuses-to-investigate-vatican-officials/

  • Ba'al Zevul

    @ Old Mark: an act of kabuki

    Nice comparison – but maybe would be even better? Emotions conveyed by stylised gestures and expressions,masks used extensively, strong emphasis on tradition (see Genesis for details), heavily codeified and regulated…just a thought.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    …codeified…accidental coinage of which I am rather proud. Used of, e.g., boy bands, williamandharry, Pussy Riot, etc. But what I meant was ‘codified’.

  • Paul Barbara

    Mary, thank you for reply. ‘Gorgeous George’ used to be my MP; after two years of failing to reply to my letters or emails about 9/11, he eventually replied to one I wrote about a Japanese MP who raised the issue in the Diet, and asked him to do the same in Parliament, with a four-word ‘reply’: ‘This is all bunkum. George Galloway’. He was probably drunk.
    But yes, he is strong on Palestine.

  • Clark

    Paul Barbara, 1:17 pm: what did you ask George Galloway? If it was about “controlled demolition”, thermite etc. then I am unsurprised by the reply. If you asked about the redacted sections of the 9/11 Commission Report and the majority of that document being based upon confessions extracted under torture, then Galloway’s response is very wrong and disappointing.

  • Gary

    Its becoming increasingly difficult for the ‘international community’ to ignore Palestine. An increasing number of non Arab states are recognising or at least voting on the recognition of Palestine. Even USA are feeling the stare of other first world countries and avoiding using their veto but instead pressuring others to vote against UN recognition.

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