PDA

View Full Version : Spain to try Israel for crimes against humanity



Peter Presland
04-05-2009, 05:45 PM
Full details in 'Spero News (http://www.speroforum.com/a/18729/Spain-to-try-Israel-for-crimes-against-humanity)'

This appears to be a confirmation of earlier speculation.

Spanish government making noises about amending the law that allows such cases to proceed. Also, the case could be undermined by the Plaintif's representative Gonzalo Boyé because of his association with ETA. Nevertheless does appear quite serious from an Israeli perspective if the faux outrage expressed by Bibi and others is any guide.


Incoming Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu called the Spanish probe outrageous. 'It's absurd: Israel is fighting against war criminals and they are charging us with crimes'' said Netanyahu. 'There is nothing more ridiculous and absurd than them accusing us, a democracy legitimately protecting itself against terrorists and war criminals, of these crimes; it is absurd and makes a mockery out of international law,' he said..

For info I constructed a web site earlier this year from a Google cache of one published in Israel that had been quickly removed by Israeli authorities - 'Wanted for War Crimes' (http://wantedforwarcrimes.blogspot.com/) . Frankly I'm surprised Google have not blocked it by now but they haven't - yet.

Myra Bronstein
04-05-2009, 05:49 PM
Full details in 'Spero News (http://www.speroforum.com/a/18729/Spain-to-try-Israel-for-crimes-against-humanity)'

This appears to be a confirmation of earlier speculation.

Spanish government making noises about amending the law that allows such cases to proceed. ...

Damn good news if it goes forward.
Is this specifically about the attack on Gaza that was strategically timed between the US election and inauguration to go down the memory hole?

Peter Presland
04-05-2009, 06:34 PM
Myra

The Spero article mentions Binyamin Ben-Eliezer, Dan Halutz, Giora Eiland, and "four other senior officials".

The named individuals all have form prior to the January Gaza invasion - per the 'Wanted for War Crimes' (http://wantedforwarcrimes.blogspot.com/)site I mentioned. My only information about the current investigation comes from the Spero article so I don't know it's scope beyond what the article mentions.

I agree it needs to proceed. I am in fact just a little heartened by the clear undercurrent of serious unease across Europe and Scandinavia about the grossness of Israeli behaviour and their immunity from serious official criticism or sanctions. Whether it will translate into serious pressure for meaningful change remains to be seen. Personally, I will not be holding my breath.

Mark Stapleton
04-05-2009, 06:37 PM
Welcome and overdue. I like your mug shots and descriptions, Peter.

And Israel's decades long practise of rewriting international law is attracting some attention:

http://www.counterpunch.org/bisharat04022009.html

Mark Stapleton
04-05-2009, 07:00 PM
Spain's action has triggered the predictable reaction from the upside-downs. This one's even worse than Soeren Kern:


http://www.subchat.com/otchat/read.asp?Id=433122

Peter Lemkin
04-05-2009, 07:17 PM
Maybe the Mossad will kidnap the Judges involved - or Israel will lob a nuke toward Spain. Even if it doesn't produce a conviction, it needs to proceed - to let Israel know they just can't keep doing what they have been doing and should have learned the lessons of long ago....
My, the prospect of both Isreali and American leaders on trial for War Crimes in Spain! The revenge of the Spanish Civil War! Viva!

Myra Bronstein
04-05-2009, 10:30 PM
Maybe the Mossad will kidnap the Judges involved - or Israel will lob a nuke toward Spain. Even if it doesn't produce a conviction, it needs to proceed - to let Israel know they just can't keep doing what they have been doing and should have learned the lessons of long ago....
My, the prospect of both Isreali and American leaders on trial for War Crimes in Spain! The revenge of the Spanish Civil War! Viva!

Isn't the Spanish Civil War where George Orwell learned many of his life lessons? That would make "The revenge of the Spanish Civil War" even more apt.

Myra Bronstein
04-05-2009, 10:31 PM
Myra

The Spero article mentions Binyamin Ben-Eliezer, Dan Halutz, Giora Eiland, and "four other senior officials".

The named individuals all have form prior to the January Gaza invasion - per the 'Wanted for War Crimes' (http://wantedforwarcrimes.blogspot.com/)site I mentioned. My only information about the current investigation comes from the Spero article so I don't know it's scope beyond what the article mentions.

I agree it needs to proceed. I am in fact just a little heartened by the clear undercurrent of serious unease across Europe and Scandinavia about the grossness of Israeli behaviour and their immunity from serious official criticism or sanctions. Whether it will translate into serious pressure for meaningful change remains to be seen. Personally, I will not be holding my breath.

Thanks Peter. Yeah I'll believe it when I see it as well, but at least this is better than the absolute silence on the subject from the Obama administration.

Magda Hassan
04-05-2009, 10:40 PM
This is great news. I do hope something comes of it. It was Spain that issued the warrant for the arrest of Pinochet also. They seem to value their citizens life unlike some. Poor Rachel Corey.

Peter Presland
07-01-2009, 12:54 PM
Well, did we honestly expect anything else?

This from The Jerusalem Post: (http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1246296537529&pagename=JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull)

Israel expressed satisfaction that a Spanish court on Tuesday closed a judge's investigation of the 2002 IAF bombing in Gaza City that killed leading Hamas terrorist Salah Shehadeh, his deputy, and 13 civilians, saying they hoped this would send a message to those trying to use European courts to besmirch Israel.
A panel of 18 judges at the National Court, decided by a wide majority to support prosecutors who said Spain lacked jurisdiction in the matter and who opposed the probe on the grounds that Israel already was investigating the attack, the court said in a statement.
The judges announced only their decision, not the specific legal reasoning behind it. The court said their reasoning would be published in a matter of days.
A Palestinian human rights group that brought the complaint before the court can appeal to Spain's Supreme Court in an effort to keep the case alive.
Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman welcomed the decision, saying the lawsuit was an attempt to use the Spanish legal system for political ends.
"We view positively all developments that successfully deal with attempts like these and hope that this is the end of the story," he said.
Among those who were named in the investigation were Industry and Trade Minister Minister Binyamin Ben-Eliezer, who was defense minister at the time; Strategic Affairs Minister MK Moshe Ya'alon, who was chief of General Staff; Dan Halutz, then-OC Air Force; then-National Security Council head Giora Eiland; the defense minister's bureau chief, Brig.-Gen. Mike Herzog, who was a senior Defense Ministry official in 2002; Avi Dichter, who was head of the Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) at the time; and former OC Southern Command Maj.-Gen. (res) Doron Almog.
Israel was infuriated when Spanish Judge Fernando Andreu first agreed to launch the investigation in January, acting at the request of Palestinian relatives of victims of the attack.
Andreu said he was acting under Spain's observance of the principle of universal jurisdiction, which holds that grave crimes such as genocide, terrorism or torture can be prosecuted in Spain, even if they are alleged to have been committed outside the country.
Andreu said the bombing in densely populated Gaza City might constitute a crime against humanity.
The July 2002 attack with a one-ton bomb dropped from an IAF F-16 targeted and killed Shehadeh, 49, the commander of Hamas's Izzadin Kassam military wing in Gaza, his wife, a daughter, and his right-hand man, Zaher Nasser, as well as nine children.
Spanish prosecutors asked the judge to suspend the investigation, but in May he announced he would continue. Andreu said he had found no evidence that Israeli prosecutors were conducting a probe of their own, so he had jurisdiction to press ahead.
Last week, the lower chamber of the Spanish parliament passed a bill to narrow the scope of Spain's universal jurisdiction law to cases in which the victims of a crime include Spaniards, or the alleged perpetrators are in Spain. The bill still has to go before the Senate, but passage is expected because both major parties support it.
Kadima head and former foreign minister Tzipi Livni, who was in contact with Spanish Foreign Minister Miguel Moratinos when the case was opened in January, called and thanked him Tuesday for his support in dealing with the matter.