Israel’s Latest Breaches of International Law

30 Straight Weeks: Over One Million Jobless US Workers Apply for UI
October 16, 2020
Issues Highlighted by Russia’s Foreign Ministry
October 17, 2020

Israel’s Latest Breaches of International Law

by Stephen Lendman

Israel is an outlaw state, the way it’s been since established on stolen Palestinian land in May 1948 — a moment of infamy in world history.

Throughout Israeli history, its ruling regimes operated like both wings of the US one-party state — by their own rules exclusively, breaching core international law repeatedly.

Weeks after the UAE and Bahrain sold out Palestinians to higher powers in Washington and Tel Aviv — the so-called Abraham Accords — Netanyahu unlawfully approved thousands of new settler homes on stolen Palestinian land.

On Wednesday and Thursday, over 4,000 new housing units were approved.

Netanyahu’s weeks earlier pledge to suspend settlement construction once again showed nothing he says can be believed.

Ahead of his announcement, Peace Now said the following:

Israel “is set to (approve) at least 4,430 settlement units in the (Occupied) West Bank…”

It follows an October 1 Netanyahu regime “declaration” of his intention “to approve 5,400 units.”

Announced settlement units construction will be higher in 2020 than any year since Peace Now began tracking their numbers in 2012.

The Netanyahu regime “is moving ahead at full steam toward solidifying the de facto annexation of the West Bank.”

His actions as prime minister plunged daggers into the heart of peace and Palestinian self-determination, notions he deplores and won’t tolerate.

Israel operates as a junior partner to Washington’s regional imperial agenda.

Their aims risk greater wars, more turbulence and chaos than already exists in the Middle East.

Israeli actions are agreed to by the US in advance.

Separately according to an exclusive Middle East Eye (MEE) report, the Netanyahu regime “stop(ped) granting visas to UN human rights workers.”

The action followed a February report by the UN Human Rights Office on illegal operations by foreign business enterprises on stolen West Bank Palestinian land.

A total of 112 business enterprises were identified, the Human Rights Office, saying the following:

It “consulted the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights, and held widespread discussions with numerous states, civil society organizations, think tanks, academics and others, as well as having extensive interactions with the companies themselves.”

Under international law, they’re operating illegally. Yet no actions are taken against them.

Despite identifying their names and unlawful actions, the Human Rights Office declined to pronounce judgment on them, saying the matter is an issue for Human Rights Council member states.

The unacceptable action by UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet is typical of how she operates — breaching the mandate of her office repeatedly.

According to MEE, human rights workers in Israel are “in limbo (because of the) crackdown on rights monitors.”

Ones operating in Israel must leave voluntarily or be forced out.

Following the February Human Right Office report, Israel suspended ties to the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) — its typical spiteful action in response to what it disapproves of, no matter how justified.

OHCHR spokesman Rupert 

Colville said the following in response to Israel’s action:

“The absence of international staff from the occupied territory is a highly irregular situation and will negatively impact on our ability to carry out our mandate.”

“We continue to hope that this situation will be resolved soon, and we are actively engaged with various relevant and concerned parties to that end.”

European Middle East Project director Martin Konecny said restricting how the OHCHR operates in Israel reflects how Israel operates on other issues.

“With the support of the US, Israel has won one victory after another in the international arena — such as the UAE and Bahrain agreements.” 

“Human rights scrutiny is kind of nuisance that stands in the way of this victory march.”

“Israel feels emboldened, not least through the support of the Trump (regime), to act against organizations with human rights remits.”

Occasional European criticism of its unacceptable actions isn’t followed by punitive action.

Trump once said he could “stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody,” yet not “lose any voters.”

The same standard applies to Israel. 

It can wage preemptive wars, commit horrendous crimes of war and against humanity, grievous human rights abuses against Palestinians, and countless other wrongdoing without losing wholehearted support from the US and other Western countries.

Stephen Lendman
Stephen Lendman
Stephen Lendman was born in 1934 in Boston, MA. In 1956, he received a BA from Harvard University. Two years of US Army service followed, then an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania in 1960. After working seven years as a marketing research analyst, he joined the Lendman Group family business in 1967. He remained there until retiring at year end 1999. Writing on major world and national issues began in summer 2005. In early 2007, radio hosting followed. Lendman now hosts the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network three times weekly. Distinguished guests are featured. Listen live or archived. Major world and national issues are discussed. Lendman is a 2008 Project Censored winner and 2011 Mexican Journalists Club international journalism award recipient.