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Thursday, June 24, 2010

Amnesty's hypocrisy, part 2 (Zvi)

Zvi commented on my last Amnesty post, and elaborated on it:

Amnesty has created its own contorted definition of the term "occupation," which it applies exclusively to Israel. Where Israel is concerned, Amnesty abandons the definition of occupation as defined under international law - which it applies to every other country and conflict - and uses its own contorted definition instead.

Amnesty does not apply this contorted definition to any other country or conflict, anywhere in the world.For example, Amnesty does not apply the same definition to Azerbaijan, despite the fact that Azerbaijan completely surrounds the enclave of Nagorno-Karabakh. Amnesty does not claim that Azerbaijan is "occupying" Nagorno-Karabakh. Amnesty did not and does not apply this definition in the Balkans, or in Yemen (where the Saudis are blockading part of the country and cutting off land borders as well) or in Iraq.

Most importantly, Amnesty has never applied this definition to Israel's Arab neighbors. in 1967, the Arab powers (Egypt, Jordan, Syria, Lebanon) cut off Israel's access to the Red Sea in a deliberate attempt to choke Israel to death. At this time, nearly the entire Israeli border was controlled and absolutely closed by Arab armies. Nobody has ever been insane enough to claim that at this point, Israel was "occupied" by the Arabs.

In addition, the definition is bizarrely illogical. As long as a power does not close all of a region's borders, it has no control over what comes in or goes out. It might as well have no control over any border whatsoever.

Israel cannot control Gaza's border with Egypt at all, as is clearly demonstrated by the profusion of weapons-smuggling tunnels that run across this border and the occasional demolition of the Egyptian border fence. In other words, the closure of Gaza relies in equal parts on Israeli and Egyptian actions. Amnesty's definition must therefore be applied equally to Israel and Egypt, since there can be no closure of a territory without a complete encirclement. Thus, either Amnesty must lay responsibility for Gaza at the feet of an international anti-Hamas coalition consisting of two equal partners - Israel and Egypt - or Amnesty's bizarre definition of "occupation" is simply another example of arrogant hypocrisy.

Elder, you are absolutely right. Israel cannot fulfill the responsibilities of an "occupying power" because Israel cannot control anything that happens in Gaza. Gaza is controlled exclusively and entirely by the Hamas regime, a bloodthirsty jihadi regime that is at war with Israel and whose ambition is not freedom but rather the genocidal slaughter of the Jews. This regime has exclusive control over all activities in Gaza.

It is categorically impossible for Israel to "ensuring the welfare of the inhabitants of Gaza" - people who live under the boot of Hamas and whom Hamas holds hostage to its war against Israel - without sending in the army, occupying Gaza, and crushing Hamas. Only by occupying Gaza could Israel fulfill Amnesty's demands. But if Israel did that, Amnesty, and every other critic of Israel, would go absolutely berserk.

Amnesty is putting Israel in a position in which Amnesty will attack Israel no matter what Israel does, short of allowing its citizens to be bombed and mortared and doing nothing about it. Amnesty is doing this by fabricating a special definition for a term that has a very different legal definition. Amnesty then uses its private definition in the context of international law, where only the real legal definition may be used. In doing so, Amnesty appears to me to be guilty not only of hypocrisy and malicious mischief, but of fraud. If Amnesty's lawyers agreed to this fabrication, then perhaps they should be disbarred.

Of course, it is not only Amnesty. The UN has also called Gaza "occupied" - and "proved" it by offering an obscure footnote that, when researched, proved the exact opposite! The commission apparently felt that no one would bother looking up the footnoted case.

What we see is that even respected international agencies will subsume logic to their own bias. They "know" that Gaza is occupied, and they therefore must find - or make up - reasons after they already made that determination in their minds.