Send a Tweet
Most Popular Choices
Share on Facebook 1 Share on Twitter 1 Share on LinkedIn Share on Reddit Tell A Friend Printer Friendly Page Save As Favorite View Favorites
OpEdNews Op Eds

Lawfare, Israel's continuation of war by other means

By   Follow Me on Twitter     Message Jonathan Cook       (Page 1 of 3 pages)     Permalink    (# of views)   2 comments

Related Topic(s): ; ; ; ; , Add Tags
Add to My Group(s)

Must Read 2   Well Said 2   Valuable 2  
View Ratings | Rate It

opednews.com Headlined to H3 4/18/15

Author 51910
Become a Fan
  (21 fans)

Reprinted from Jonathan Cook Blog


(Image by YouTube)   Details   DMCA
- Advertisement -
>

Right-wing Israeli organizations have been quietly escalating "legal warfare" against the Palestinian leadership in an attempt to dissuade it from bringing war crimes charges against Israel at the International Criminal Court.

The latest case against the Palestinians, filed in the US, threatens lengthy jail sentences and heavy fines against Hamas leaders, including Khaled Mashal, for briefly closing Israel's only international airport during Israel's attack on Gaza last summer.

It follows a decision by a New York jury in February to impose $218m damages on the Palestinian Authority, the Palestinian government-in-waiting in the occupied territories. The compensation relates to six attacks more than a decade ago, at the start of the second intifada, in which US citizens were killed or injured.

- Advertisement -

The legal campaign, which exploits loosely defined anti-terrorism laws in the US, appears designed to exhaust the Palestinian authority's existing financial reserves and isolate it from funding sources in the region.

Comments from Shurat HaDin, a legal group that initiated the action against the PA, indicate that the intention is to push Palestinian institutions toward collapse, both as a way to weaken efforts to resist Israel's occupation and to destroy any possibility of Palestinian statehood.

Punishing Palestinians

Last December, as the PA case opened, Shurat HaDin's director, Nitsana Darshan-Leitner, warned that the goal was to create "financial instability" for the Palestinians. She added that harsh financial penalties would be a test of the PA's readiness for statehood: "If they want to become a state, they have to show that they can meet their obligations."

- Advertisement -

The $218m award and similar ones that may be approved by US juries in the future could potentially bankrupt the PA.

Palestinian officials have already warned that the PA is in dire financial trouble after Israel recently withheld millions in tax revenues it collects on the Authority's behalf.

Palestinian institutions also risk finding themselves financially marooned after Israeli legal groups scored a success in the US last week against a leading Middle East bank.

In a precedent-setting case last September, a US jury found the Jordan-based Arab Bank liable for 24 attacks, blamed on Hamas, in which US citizens were hurt or killed. The bank was shown to have made transactions to accounts belonging to Hamas members.

A federal judge in Brooklyn upheld that verdict last week, even though the bank had demonstrated it followed standard industry practices. The door is now open to some 300 victims and their relatives to claim damages, likely to run into the hundreds of millions of dollars.

The ruling's wider significance is that it is likely to make most banks wary of operating in the occupied Palestinian territories for fear of handling accounts that may later be shown to belong to Palestinians involved in attacks against Israel.

- Advertisement -

Similar cases are pending against other banks, including the Bank of China, Credit Lyonnais and a unit of the Royal Bank of Scotland.

Move to Hague court

The raft of recent cases in the US launched by Israeli organizations has been largely overlooked as world attention has focused instead on Palestinian efforts to use legal action against Israel.

This month the Palestinian Authority became an official member of the International Criminal Court (ICC).

Next Page  1  |  2  |  3

 

- Advertisement -

Must Read 2   Well Said 2   Valuable 2  
View Ratings | Rate It

opednews.com

Jonathan Cook is a writer and journalist based in Nazareth, Israel. He is the 2011 winner of the Martha Gellhorn Special Prize for Journalism. His latest books are "Israel and the Clash of Civilisations: Iraq, Iran and the Plan to Remake the Middle East" (Pluto Press) and "Disappearing Palestine: (more...)
 

Jonathan Cook Social Media Pages: Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in       Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in       Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in       Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Go To Commenting
The views expressed herein are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.
Writers Guidelines
Contact AuthorContact Author Contact EditorContact Editor Author PageView Authors' Articles
Support OpEdNews

OpEdNews depends upon can't survive without your help.

If you value this article and the work of OpEdNews, please either Donate or Purchase a premium membership.

STAY IN THE KNOW
If you've enjoyed this, sign up for our daily or weekly newsletter to get lots of great progressive content.
Daily Weekly     OpEdNews Newsletter
Name
Email
   (Opens new browser window)
 

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

The battle for Syria's skies will see a move from proxy clashes to direct ones

American liberals unleashed the Trump monster

After Sy Hersh's Bombshell Investigation, Why Won't Media Tell the Real Story of Trump's Military Strike in Syria?

Mandela: a Dissenting Opinion

Tide Turns against Israel: Pariah Status and Isolation Lie Ahead

Why Gaza must suffer again -- The four guilty parties behind Israel's attack