Israel Retaliates Against War Crimes Investigation, Attacks AFP
Israel Retaliates Against War Crimes Investigation, Attacks AFP
• Israeli embassy spokesman has nuclear-grade meltdown.
• Attacks AMERICAN FREE PRESS for asking tough questions.
By Ronald L. Ray —
Israel is not known for subtle diplomatic skills. That is blatantly obvious in the Zionist government’s heavy-handed response to that state of Palestine’s accepting the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court (ICC) and acceding to the Rome Statute at the beginning of January, in an effort to obtain justice in the face of the ongoing Israeli genocide against the Palestinian people.
The subsequent announcement on January 16 by ICC prosecutor Fatou Bensouda of a preliminary examination of the situation in Palestine led a swarm of outraged Israeli and American officials to condemn the efforts and initiate reprisals against both Palestine and the war crimes tribunal itself. And when AMERICAN FREE PRESS submitted some tough questions about it to the Israeli Embassy in Washington, D.C., the official spokesman responded in a manner that was, well, most undiplomatic.
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas long has sought to steer a middle course between the Hamas Party that governs Gaza and the Israeli government. Because Israel refused to resume peace negotiations with Palestine unless Abbas represented all Palestinians, he formed a unity government with Hamas. Then Israel condemned him for “dealing with terrorists” and withdrew again, demonstrating bad faith. That, and the brutal military attacks initiated against Gaza by Israel last summer, apparently led Abbas to conclude finally that the Israelis have no intention of achieving peace with Palestinians unless it is the “peace of the grave.”
This is the context in which Palestine, recognized as a sovereign nation by the United Nations and most of the world other than the United States and Israel, chose to seek help again from the ICC and accept the Rome Statute governing war crimes, crimes of genocide and crimes against humanity.
Ms. Bensouda will investigate whether formal charges should be brought against Israel, although the full process could take years. But even while justice is delayed, Palestine can use the case to bring greater international focus on the intense suffering and death inflicted by Israel on its people.
Apart from public tirades by Israeli officials, the Zionist government—like all extortionists—retaliated immediately, cutting off a $125 million monthly tax transfer to Palestine, contrary to legal agreements, in order to undermine the Palestinian government and its ability to pay employees. Further retaliation was promised by the Jewish juvenile delinquents.
Israeli officials also seek to destroy the independent ICC, demanding that the Zionist client states of Japan, Canada, Australia and Germany violate treaty obligations and stop funding the court. Paranoid Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman alleged the ICC investigation is “solely motivated by political anti-Israel considerations,” and threatened that Israel would “dismantle this court.”
The American Israel Public Affairs Committee and Zionist sycophants in Congress are demanding that $500 million in annual U.S. aid to Palestine be cut off. Some “peacemakers.” The Obama White House did not respond to AMERICAN FREE PRESS requests for a statement.
Because Israeli Ambassador to the U.S. Ron Dermer and embassy spokesman Aaron Segui were unavailable for interviews, this reporter submitted 10 questions to the spokesman on January 22.
Segui’s January 23 response was astonishing and sadly stereotypical. Asked about Israel’s latest words and actions regarding the above situation, and about a long list of Israelis’ genocidal activities in Palestine, no statesman-like, reasoned response resulted. Instead, Segui replied: “We respond to questions from real press and real journalists. We do not deal with any of those coming from pathetic, cheap anti-Israeli propaganda platforms.”
AFP readers may wish to protest this undignified behavior and support justice for beleaguered Palestinians suffering from Israeli war crimes by contacting the Israeli embassy at (202) 364-5500. Tell the ambassador to stop the genocide.
10 Questions for the Israeli Embassy
• Here is the list of Ronald Ray’s questions for the Israeli ambassador that triggered a tizzy
1. What is the Israeli government’s view of the International Criminal Court (ICC)? Previously, it stated it is a “long-standing advocate” of the ICC.
2. How does the Israeli government view the accession of the Palestinian State to the Rome Statute governing the ICC and the Palestinian effort to have war crimes charges brought against Israel and/or individual Israelis?
3. Public statements by Israeli officials, including Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, have demonstrated extreme hostility toward all Palestinian efforts to accede to the Rome Statute and to seek an investigation into potential Israel war crimes committed on Palestinian territory. Why is this?
4. If, as Israel repeatedly asserts, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) are “the most moral military in the world,” why do Israeli officials display such obvious anger and vindictiveness toward Palestinian and ICC prosecutor actions?
5. If Israel is guilty of no war crimes or crimes against humanity, why do Israeli officials act more like playground bullies than statesmen?
6. If Israel is guilty of no war crimes or crimes against humanity, why is it attempting to undermine the legitimacy and even existence of the ICC?
7. If Israel is guilty of no war crimes or crimes against humanity, why has it withheld the $125 million customs payment it legally owes to the Palestinian State?
8. What is the response of the government of Israel to those who point to clear evidence that Israel—including the IDF and illegal Israeli “settlers” in Gaza and the West Bank—is engaging in documented acts and a program of genocide against the Palestinian people, including but not limited to enclosing them in what amount to massive, open-air prison/death camps with walls worse than those of a ghetto, topped by machine gun turrets; policies and acts of racism and apartheid; poisoning and destruction of Palestinian water supplies; withholding of food and medical supplies from Palestinians; illegal naval blockade of Gaza; deliberate killing and maiming of massive numbers of non-combatants, especially Palestinian women and children; collective punishment of Palestinians; unprovoked kidnapping and/or murder of individual Palestinians, especially children and youths; and the unjust, illegal seizure of land in Palestinian East Jerusalem, including expulsion of the Palestinian inhabitants, contrary to international law; etc.? Finally, although the following are not part of my report on the ICC issue, I would be most grateful for answers to the following questions, as well, if at all possible.
9. Why does Israel not join the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, although it possesses an estimated 400 nuclear weapons?
10. Why has the state of Israel refused to provide a full apology or provide full reparations to survivors and to the United States government for its wanton and unprovoked attack on the USS Liberty in 1967, in which Israel attempted to sink a clearly marked U.S. reconnaissance ship in a deliberate act of war against the U.S.?
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