Israeli Supreme Court Rule of Law Abuses
Time and again, Israel’s Supreme Court rubber stamps what no legitimate tribunal would tolerate — operating as an apartheid instrument of abusive practices against defenseless Palestinians.
A previous article discussed a number of its deplorable rulings. This one covers more, information compiled by B’Tselem.
Weeks earlier, the human rights group discussed the high court’s ruling that OK’d holding bodies of Palestinians murdered by security forces as bargaining chips.
Bodies of at least 52 victims of apartheid viciousness have not been returned to family members for burial, “causing (them) immense suffering,” B’Tselem explained, adding:
Holding Palestinian bodies as bargaining chips “is longstanding practice” by Israeli regimes. Victims killed by soldiers or police were either eliminated preemptively in cold blood or in response to their right of self-defense against hostile regime actions.
B’Tselem: Israel’s policy of failing to return bodies to aggrieved families “is shrouded in ambiguity,” including “the exact number of bodies Israel has held onto and returned since 1967. Various estimates put the number (in) the hundreds.”
The policy is one of many examples of state-sponsored viciousness. Israel denies Palestinians the right of self-defense affirmed in international law.
When lawfully defending themselves against unlawful Israeli actions they’re automatically called “terrorists” — state terror ignored, considered the right to defend the nation’s security at a time when its only threats are invented, not real.
Relatives of six Palestinians wanting bodies of their loved ones returned for proper burial petitioned Israel’s high court for justice denied them.
B’Tselem: Ruling regimes claim they’re empowered “to retain the bodies from Regulation 133(3) of the Defense (Emergency) Regulations,” stating:
“Notwithstanding anything contained in any law, it shall be lawful for a military commander to order that the body of any deceased person shall be buried in such place as the military commander may direct,” adding:
“The military commander may by such order direct to whom and at what hour the said body shall be buried.”
“Such order shall be full and sufficient authority for the burial of said body, and any person who contravenes or obstructs such order shall be guilty of an offense against these regulations.”
The above “regulation” is one of countless examples of how a militarized police state operates — hostile to individuals it considers nonpersons.
Israel’s Supreme Court supported the above abuse of power, refusing to order the state to release bodies of Palestinian victims it unacceptably holds. A summary of its unjustifiable ruling was as follows:
“The objective purpose of the defense regulations is to provide the nation’s leadership with effective tools for combatting terrorism (sic) and protecting the security of the country and its citizens (sic),” adding:
“Our obligation to perpetually seek the retrieval of remains of Israeli citizens and fallen IDF soldiers held by terrorist organizations (sic) lies at the heart of protecting national security, and therefore, at the heart of the objective purpose of Regulation 133(3).”
“Regulation 133(3) grants the military commander the power to hold, including by way of temporary burial, the remains of terrorists (sic) for the purpose of protecting national security (sic) or upholding the dignity of fallen enemies that cannot be returned (sic).”
The high court’s ruling, like many others, justified what’s unjustifiable — contemptuous of Palestinians’ rights for not being Jewish, along with upholding the power of the state to do whatever it pleases with impunity.
B’Tselem denounced the ruling as follows, saying:
High court justices “time and again ignore the broader context in which these violations take place: a rigid military regime that has been in place for more than fifty years, governing an occupied population that has no political rights and no say in the most basic decisions affecting its life,” adding:
“These circumstances warrant enhanced protection for the population, yet the court uses its powers of judicial review to enhance the power of the state, including its use of draconian measures.”
“In so doing, not only do the Supreme Court justices fail to discharge their duties, but they also play a pivotal role in legitimizing the entire occupation, which benefits from the seal of approval given to its inherent human rights violations by the highest judicial instance in the land.”
Earlier in October, B’Tselem discussed how Israel’s high court “facilitates interrogation of Palestinian(s) under torture,” saying:
On October 7, three Israeli high court justices upheld an injunction, “denying Samer ‘Arbid, a Palestinian from the West Bank, the right to meet with legal counsel.”
Tortured and abused by Shin Bet during interrogation, he was hospitalized unconscious on life support.
“The Court justified what’s unjustifiable by citing a dubious “improvement in his medical status” — his family and lawyers know nothing about.
On September 25, ‘Arbid was unlawfully arrested, what Palestinians are subjected to virtually every day throughout the Territories — brutalized and detained in captivity as political prisoners.
In court without family members or legal counsel, ‘Arbid was denied this fundamental right.
When his wife and legal counsel were allowed to see him, “the hospital refused to provide either them or Physicians for Human Rights basic information about his medical status,” B’Tselem explained.
The state prevented further meetings between ‘Arbid and his legal counsel. The Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association representing him petitioned Israel’s Supreme Court to reverse the ruling.
A three-justice panel rejected the request, B’Tselem saying the following:
“In the ruling, the judges first state that ‘the situation at hand is unusual’ given the petitioner’s medical status,” adding:
“According to the information provided by the state, the injunction against ‘Arbid’s meeting legal counsel was removed ‘due to his medical condition.’ ”
“We are satisfied that preventing the meeting (with legal counsel) is indeed vital to regional security (sic), and that the material presented to us is unequivocal (sic).”
International human rights law affirms the right of everyone to legal counsel when arrested — notably the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) and UN Principles and Guidelines on Access to Legal Aid in Criminal Justice Systems.
Israel consistently and repeatedly breaches international laws with impunity, upheld by its high court time and again.
Its three-justice panel dismissed the gravity of ‘Arbid’s torture and abuse, saying: “(O)n this matter, an inquiry is underway by the Inspector of Complaints by ISA Interrogees, and it behooves the Court to avoid any conclusion or statement so long as that inquiry is underway.”
When Israeli “inquiries” on abuses of Palestinians are conducted, whitewashes virtually always follow, justice consistently denied.
B’Tselem: Israel’s high court ruling on ‘Arbid OKs Shin Bet to “continue torturing (him and other Palestinians during) interrogations,” adding:
Denying detainees the right of counsel “to advise them on their rights, assess their situation, and take suitable legal steps in their defense” permits abuses against them to continue.
“This reality makes the (high court’s) ruling horrifying in its significance. Without restrictions on the conduct and methods of interrogators, external oversight or a real system of investigating complaints, the court’s decision to prevent ‘Arbid from consulting with his lawyers – who are supposed to defend his rights – allows” Shin Bet to torture and abuse Palestinians unrestrained by rule of law checks.
Abusive interrogations were “designed by state authorities…(T)he Israel Prison Service (enforces) inhumane” treatment of Palestinians.
“ ‘Arbid’s case clearly demonstrates the vulnerable and defenseless position of Palestinians who are detained for interrogation, and shows how all the entities that are supposed to safeguard their well-being collude (to harm) them, even when the terrible results are known.”
“This case reflects the extent to which Israel renders the protections afforded to Palestinian detainees by Israeli law and international law, which it repeatedly claims to uphold, meaningless.”
‘Arbid and countless thousands of other Palestinian political prisoners are tortured and otherwise abused by Israeli apartheid ruthlessness — no actions by the world community taken to hold state authorities accountable for their high crimes against humanity.
My two Wall Street books are timely reading:
“How Wall Street Fleeces America: Privatized Banking, Government Collusion, and Class War”
“Banker Occupation: Waging Financial War on Humanity”