International Criminal Court: Israel's greatest fear

al-Malki at the ICC: Deconsruction of the hasbara in Western Media


REUTERS ARTICLE ON ICC AS AN EXAMPLE
Israeli hasbara (its propaganda) is ubiquitous in Western media and is consumed uncritically by most, especially the Americans. It’s already been established that hasbara has no connection to reality, but this article will deconstruct how the hasbara “talking points” infect coverage in one article run by Reuters.

Palestinian Authority seeks ICC war crimes case against Israel
Reuters article 5 August, 2014 by By Jussi Rosendahl and Anthony Deutsch

Though it seems to appear unbiased, it is very much a propaganda piece on behalf of “Israel.” First, we must list the hasbara “talking points” that are contained throughout the article, then we will explain how every single one is factually incorrect, unconnected to reality and is libellous.

Hasbara talking points:
1. Palestine is not a State
2. November 2012 vote in UN General Assembly on Palestine’s status upgrade was purely symbolic.
3. Ignore Palestinian unity government completely, repeat that Hamas still runs Gaza
4. Continually imply that the two areas of Palestine are divided more than geographically
5. Hamas is totally irrational and irresponsible. Ignore the political, focus on “hardline” and “militants” NEVER mention “resistance” or “defense.”
6. Israel can file a case at the ICC while not subject to its jurisdiction (not acceding the Rome Statute)
7. All defensive operations by Palestinian resistance are inherently war crimes
8. Hamas will never accept “Israel’s” existence
9. It is acceptable to acquire territory by war or force; “Israel’s” annexation of Jerusalem is legitimate, lawful
10. Misuse the term “ally” with regards to the relationship between the USA and Israel.

1. Palestine is not a state

Palestine declared Statehood in 1988. A declaration of statehood is irrevocable, and is it not within the power of any existing state to deny statehood to any other. Palestine fulfils all the qualities required to be considered a relevant party within international law, as laid out in the Montevideo Convention on the Rights and Duties of States. It is the practice of “Israel’s” government, hasbarists and sympathetic media to always, without fail, refer to the State of Palestine as the “PA” or “Palestinian Authority, ” the term used in the disastrous Oslo Accords.

2. November 2012 vote in UNGA on Palestine’s status upgrade was purely symbolic.

It is implied or claimed outright by hasbarists and apologists for “Israel” that the UN cannot create states, and so therefore the UNGA vote did not make Palestine into a State. That is correct, but that has nothing to do with the topic of the vote or the meaning of it.  And this argument is used to obfuscate the issue. The vote was simply on changing the status within the organization due to the fact that the State of Palestine had been recognised by the majority of the countries in the world.

The vote in the General Assembly of the United Nations on Palestine’s status within the body could not have even been raised unless or until the majority of countries in the community of nations had recognised it.  Out of 193 countries, 134 have formally recognised the State of Palestine. Formal recognition by one state of another is, like a declaration, also irrevocable.

3. Ignore Palestinian unity government, repeat that Hamas still runs Gaza

Considering that a unity government of Palestine deprives “Israel” of a reason to not negotiate, it is understandable that hasbarists and sympathetic media wish to ignore it. The terms of the new unity government mean that Hamas, the party, has relinquished its rule in Gaza and ceded it to the government of the State of Palestine run from Ramallah in the ‘West Bank.’

“Israel” performed a mass round-up of Palestinians in the ‘West Bank’ of individuals that are members of Hamas (the political party), affiliated with it or connected in any remote way to the party. This was done to put a strain on the new unity government and reopen the divide between the two main parties: Hamas and Fatah. Additionally, it began bombing Gaza for the same reason.

To add some veneer of rationality or rationalisation to its genocidal project on Gaza, “Israeli” hasbarists and its sympathetic persons in the media must continue to repeat this talking point and not mention, studiously, the unity government or what that entails.

4. Imply that the two areas of Palestine are divided more than geographically

In keeping with talking point # 3, it is necessary to continually imply that Gaza and the ‘West Bank’ are divided in a manner that is more that is just geographic. This also implies that there is a fundamental difference between the two areas, as if they are different peoples with Gazans the more wild and uncivilised and therefore more worthy of being bombed into oblivion by “Israel.”

5. Hamas is totally irrational and irresponsible. Ignore the political, focus on “hardline” and “militants” never mention “resistance” or “defense.”

Hamas is a political party with an armed wing, like Hezbollah or Sinn Féin. “Israel” absolutely needs the West, and the Americans in particular, to have as their conception a false image of wild, barbaric, Jew-hating mad-men and women who dream of their children blowing themselves up in a suicide vest. So the focus, whenever Hamas is mentioned, is always on the ‘militant’ and implies that the political party exists only to legitimise the armed wing, which is of course absurd.

And notice that whenever Hamas is mentioned in Western media, the words “resistance” or “defence” are never mentioned in connection to the armed wing, or that they are resisting “Israeli” occupation and siege and defending the people of Gaza from “Israel’s” genocidal attacks and oppression. The reason is because people in the West naturally understand resistance to oppression and oppressors, so those words must be kept out of any coverage of Hamas and Gaza, and defence can only be used in connection with “Israel.”

6. Israel can file a case at the ICC while not subject to its jurisdiction

This is a totally illogical talking point often repeated and never challenged. But note that if Palestine cannot file a case at the ICC while not acceding the Rome Statute, neither can “Israel.” This talking point is meant to imply equality between the two states though none exists, and to imply also that “Israel” in its great forbearance and magnanimity, has held off from filing a case against Palestine at the ICC.

This is obviously not the case. “Israel” is terrified of Palestine signing the Rome Statute and the ICC accepting a case against “Israel” because it has committed numerous war crimes and crimes against humanity. This is the reason that its patron, the United States, has exerted enormous pressure on Palestine not to not accede this document.

7. All defensive operations by Palestinian resistance are inherently war crimes

Concurrent with, and related to, talking point number 5 is that all acts by Palestinian resistance are necessarily war crimes, so Hamas is unlikely to allow the State of Palestine to accede to the Rome Statute, because Hamas would be subject to war crimes charges by “Israel.”  It is meant to imply the following: 1) no resistance to “Israel’s ” siege and occupation are legitimate, 2) no resistance to number 1 are understandable, 3) there is no need for Palestinians to protect themselves (defend) from “Israel’s” military genocide operations in Gaza or its occupation and oppression in the ‘West Bank’ or Jerusalem.

8. Hamas will never accept “Israel’s” existence

Concurrent with and related to talking point number 5 above, is that Hamas will never ever accept “Israel” and thus “Israel” understandably wants to destroy this party of madmen who want to destroy it. Frequently, hasbarists and sympathetic media will bring up the outdated charter as “proof” of Hamas’ utter intolerance and Jew-hating credentials. Cynically these same studiously avoid all mention of published statements and interviews in which Hamas politburo have made very clear that the charter is old and outdated and does not reflect the present but the time in which it was written, and that it is willing to accept “Israel” within the 1967 armistice lines.

9. It is acceptable to acquire territory by war or force; “Israel’s” annexation of Jerusalem is legitimate, lawful

Both parts of this talking point are diametrically opposed to law and reality. It is absolutely unacceptable and unlawful to acquire territory by war or force -and has been made clear in numerous UNSC resolutions regarding Israel- and that “Israel’s” purported annexation of Jerusalem is totally outside of the law and is null and void. No part of Jerusalem is located within the territorial borders of “Israel,” something mentioned in a proclamation by the government in 1948 and admitted to the UNSC also in 1948.  “Israel’s” government, hasbarists and sympathetic media try very hard to consistently portray the purported annexation as legitimate and a foregone conclusion by using terminology such as, “the PA which seeks a state on land – the West Bank, Gaza and East Jerusalem – captured by the Jewish state in a 1967 war.”

10. Misuse the term “ally” with regards to the relationship between the USA and Israel

One trick used by “Israel’s” hasbarists, government, supporters and sympathetic media is intentionally misusing words in a manner that twist the meaning to fit the “Israeli” narrative and talking point. In this case the legal term, as used in international law, “ally” absolutely does not apply.

A union or association of two or more states or nations, formed by league or treaty, for the joint prosecution of a war, or for their mutual assistance and protection in repelling hostile attacks. The league or treaty by which the association is formed. The act of confederating, by league or treaty, for the purposes mentioned. If the alliance is formed for the purpose of mutual aid in the prosecution of a war against a common enemy, it is called an “offensive” alliance. If it contemplates only the rendition of aid and protection in resisting the assault of a hostile power, it is called a “defensive” alliance. If it combines both these features, it is denominated an alliance “offensive and defensive.” Law Dictionary: What is ALLIANCE? definition of ALLIANCE (Black’s Law Dictionary)

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