The blood libel accusation against Israel has now begun in The Hague. The failed nation of South Africa has brought genocide charges against Israel in the International Court of Justice.
What is the International Court of Justice? It is not international, because it excludes judges from certain countries. It is not a real court, because the judges are selected by their countries and many of them simply follow the instructions of those who appointed them.
And it has never done justice, because it has long been biased against Israel. It is the United Nations court, and that tells you all you need to know about it. The United Nations has become the megaphone of bigotry and anti-Semitism.
As an Israeli diplomat once put it, if Algeria introduced a resolution that the earth is flat and that Israel flattened it, it would win 120 to 27 with 32 abstentions. And you can name the countries in each of the groups before any evidence is presented.
Both the United Nations and its court are shams, especially when it comes to Israel. The facts are clear: Israel has not committed genocide nor has it violated international law as it defended itself from Hamas barbarity. It is the Hamas charter that calls for genocide against the Jews of Israel, and it is South Africa that is harboring Hamas terrorists and defending its murders and rapes. It should be Hamas that is on trial for attempted genocide and South Africa that is on trial for complicity with Hamas. Instead, the nation-state of the Jewish people is being accused of a blood libel, despite going to great lengths to avoid civilian casualties in its legitimate efforts to destroy Hamas.
There have been too many civilian casualties in Gaza, although no one has any idea how many of the dead and wounded were actually civilians, as distinguished from terrorists and those who assist them. The civilian casualties are the fault of Hamas, first for starting the war by murdering Israeli civilians, and second by hiding their military assets among civilians in an effort to use them as human shields. Hamas apparently even shot at its own citizens to keep them from fleeing to southern Gaza for safety as the Israelis had urged them to.
The evidence is indisputable that Hamas has committed numerous war crimes. First, it attacked Israeli civilians attending a music festival and living in peace. Second, it ordered its terrorists to rape and sexually assault its victims, thus weaponizing sexual assault during wartime. Third, it has fired thousands of rockets at Israeli civilian targets. Fourth, it has built tunnels with exits near Israeli civilian areas, whose purpose it is to murder and kidnap civilians. Fifth, it has deliberately placed its rocket launchers and command centers in civilian areas, in order to induce Israel to cause collateral damage among civilians. Sixth, it has used children and even babies as human shields to prevent Israel from rescuing its hostages. Seventh, it has taken over hospitals, schools, mosques and other civilian resources and turned them into military assets. Eighth, it has recruited 13- and 14-year-old boys and girls to become terrorists. Ninth, it has coerced women into becoming suicide bombers targeting Israeli civilians. Tenth, it arranged for civilian workers from Gaza to get jobs in Israel in order to provide them information they used to murder Israeli civilians.
Hamas has praised South Africa for doing its dirty work and bringing the blood libel claim against Israel. Since the death of Nelson Mandela, South Africa has gone downhill as a nation. It has become a corrupt kleptocracy with spiraling crime rates and massive inequality. Both white and black South Africans are leaving the failed nation in droves. In order to divert attention from its failures toward its own people, it has done what so many anti-Semites have done over the years: it has used Israel and the Jews as scapegoats to deflect attention away from its own failures.
The crime of genocide requires an intent to destroy an entire people, based on ethnicity, race or religion. It also requires actions, calculated to achieve that goal. Israel has done exactly the opposite in relation to the Arabs and Muslims of Gaza. It ended the occupation in 2005, leaving behind farming equipment and other material resources that could have been used to turn Gaza into Singapore on the Mediterranean. It has provided medical services to Gazans in need of Israel’s exceptional resources. It has provided employment for thousands of Gazans with good pay. The end result is that the population of the Gaza Strip has increased dramatically over the years during which Israel has been accused of genocide. These are not the indicia of genocide. What Israel has done has been based on one consideration alone: namely the need to protect its own civilians from efforts by Hamas to conduct genocide against its Jewish civilians.
The very term “genocide” was coined to describe the Nazi’s largely successful effort to end the entire Jewish presence in Europe, by the use of gas chambers, shooting pits and other industrial mechanisms of mass murder. To turn that important word into a weapon against the descendants of the Jews who survived the Nazi genocide is to distort history, morality and basic decency.
Were the International Court of Justice to falsely conclude that Israel was guilty of genocide, it would destroy whatever remaining credibility that court might have. If that were to happen, the United States and some other nations should and probably would leave the court: it would not deserve the legitimacy afforded by membership of any decent country.
Alan Dershowitz is professor emeritus at Harvard Law School and the author of “Get Trump,” “Guilt by Accusation” and “The Price of Principle.” Andrew Stein, a Democrat, served as New York City Council president, 1986-94. This piece is republished from the Alan Dershowitz Newsletter.
The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not reflect the official position of the Tampa Free Press.