Friday, February 03, 2006

UK Considers Weakening War Crimes Law

I am not sure if this change would eliminate war crimes laws altogether, or just for Israelis. Either way, it is a stark change in policy.

UK considers curbing citizens' right to arrest alleged war criminals

The government is considering weakening laws designed to capture alleged war criminals and torturers who enter Britain, after pressure from the Israeli government, the Guardian has learned.

The changes would bar individuals from seeking international warrants for the arrest of people suspected of serious human rights abuses. The government has confirmed that Israeli officials have lobbied for changes in the law, which has kept some of their military officials away from Britain in case there should be an attempt to arrest them.

The proposals follow Israeli anger after an attempt was made to arrest one of their senior retired generals, Doron Almog, at Heathrow last September. He was tipped off that police were waiting to arrest him for alleged war crimes in Gaza. He stayed on the El Al plane and flew back to Israel. The warrant was issued by Bow Street magistrates, central London, after an application from lawyers representing Palestinians who say they suffered because of the Israeli general's alleged illegal orders.


Best comment:

Mayor of old London Town, Ken Livingston, made the point that some British folk can go and join the IDF, promptly go about mass-murdering people then come back to Blighty and no-one bats an eyelid - yet, try doing the same thing if it's seen as not on behalf of Western interests ie 'islamic suicide bombeing' etc - a different kettle of bananas all together


Guardian

6 Comments:

Blogger Ibrahamav said...

When it appears that there is a political motive to the law, especially when it involves the politics of other nations, then those laws need to be struck from the record.

The British law was just about to be used for that purpose.

The act of gunning down four Palestinian terrorists, who had just, at point blank range, murdered a pregnant mother and her 4 daughters, could, in legalese, be described and charged as a war crime.

Some Palestinians are convinced that it is a war crime.

2/04/2006 05:00:00 AM  
Blogger Brian said...

Ibramamav, aren't you the hypocrite that thinks Australia, the US and other western countries should not be allowed to show a strong preference for Christian immigration, but it is OK for Israel to keep its preference for Jewish immigration?

Yeah, I think that is you.

FIrst, it is hard to see how the private persons initiating this action in UK were involved in politics, unless you define politics so loosely as to be meaningless.

Were the people who held up pinochet somehow not involved with "politics'?

Second, even if politics was involved how does that change anything? If the person was not guilty of a war crime what did he have to worry about?

"Politics" is just a means, not an end.

All that being said, I have seen you on the Antony Lowenstein site, and your tactic is just to post as much misinformation as possible, along with a few personal attacks, in hopes of confusing some people and making too much work for others to keep up with.

For example, saying something is just "politics" is a useless statement designed to confuse. It is laughable, really.

If you keep it up I will have to delete your posts as well. If you can provide constructive information, tho, I will be happy to let them stand.

2/04/2006 08:21:00 AM  
Blogger Brian said...

Doesn't look like your information on gunning down for Palestinian terrorists is correct, Ibrahamav.

Though Almog's alleged crime – the wanton destruction of 59 civilian homes in the Rafah refugee camp in January 2002 – took place in the Gaza Strip, UK law authorizes universal jurisdiction for war crimes under the 1957 Geneva Conventions Act.

The January 2002 demolitions followed the killing of four Israeli soldiers in southern Gaza the previous day; however, the army denies that the demolitions were ordered as revenge or collective punishment, claiming that they had been prepared weeks in advance for security purposes, according to a report by Human Rights Watch.

Further evidence presented to the London judge against Almog included responsibility for the killing of a pregnant woman, Noha Shukri Al-Makadma, in March 2003, and the dropping of a one-ton bomb in a densely populated Gaza City neighbourhood which killed 15 and wounded 150 Palestinians.

The bomb was used to assassinate Hamas military commander, Salah Shehadeh; he was killed along with his wife and teenage daughter, as well as 12 other Palestinians, eight of them children.


That's strike one.

2/04/2006 08:27:00 AM  
Anonymous David said...

Bravo, Brian.

This "ibrahamv" is clearly of the talk-fast-and-say-anything-until-they-get-tired school of hasbara. In his world, it's "He who posts last wins," and if he makes a fool of himself it's OK because it's all in the service of the homeland.

Getting facts right is difficult, but this gentleman doesn't even try--whether out of a general disrespect for truth or just for his Gentile audience is not clear. Arguing an opposing point of view is one thing, but blatantly sabotaging an argument is another.

And your point about the misuse of "politics" is an important one. Zionists are often claiming that criticism of the homeland can be ignored because it is "political". The implication is that anyone with a political goal is clearly going to lie and cheat for it. Here I think they may be projecting their own experience onto others. The criticism of apartheid South Africa could indeed be called political, but that does not mean it was any less valid.

2/04/2006 10:19:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's also worth pointing out that criticism of Israel's behavior comes from across the political spectrum. Just reading the comments on this site shows that it's visited by both the left and the right. The old categories are breaking down.

2/04/2006 10:26:00 AM  
Blogger Ibrahamav said...

It seems that Brian is confused. lets try it again:

The act of gunning down four Palestinian terrorists, who had just, at point blank range, murdered a pregnant mother and her 4 daughters, could, in legalese, be described and charged as a war crime.

Some Palestinians are convinced that it is a war crime. There are no Palestinians, on record, who stated that the murder of the pregnant women and her daughters was a war crime.

Perhaps Brian will now understand.

2/05/2006 05:57:00 PM  

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