Posted 13 July 2004 - 02:09 AM
Hi Ogami. I can't tell if you're serious, your question about where was the Court? Concerning itself with matters of law, in actual cases, no doubt, since nobody took a court case wanting to examine the legality of suicide bombings, it's kind of ridiculous, because there probably isn't a country in the world where such acts are not illegal. What possible reason would the court have to examine that issue? I have an idea, let's urge the US Supreme Court to demand an end to murders in the US, Ogami, imagine the effect such action would provide. Perhaps you should review the purpose and scope of the World Court, Ogami, you seem to want them to be a political entity like the UN, which they are not. They are a court of law. Of course, unlike courts as we usually understand them, they have no real power to enforce their judgement.
The US has valid concerns about international tribunals being used against US people simply because they are US, but EU tribunals? Why would the US ever be subject to the EU? That being said, the legitimacy of many worldwide institutions are hurt by US unwillingness to cooperate, something that can frustrate other nations. Well, Bush doesn't have to consider the Europeans superior, but he really should listen to other people's opinion every once in a while, hell, if he had listened to a few of his own people a year ago, we wouldn't have had such a big mess in post-war Iraq. I should also mention many European nations warned of much the same thing.
Ogami, I have to admit, that is the most outrageous misrepresentation of the facts I have ever heard. The Court hears cases, so unless a case is brought before them, they, like many Justices the world over, don't comment on it. Who cares if the Court is outraged at a dictator's abuses? They have no case before them, they have no standing, no right, no authority, to offer judgement. The wall was an advisory case brought before them. It has a simple question, is Israel's wall illegal or not? They do not question Israel's right to defend itself, to arm itself, whatever, they look to see if Israel's wall is an illegal land grab or not. They concluded, just like almost everyone else in the world, that Israel's wall is a land grab. It's about the simplest thing, there's no hidden agenda, no anti-Israel, no anti-US sentiment, here. I would suggest you're overreacting, Ogami.
Ogami, I was not aware the World Court was investigating US atrocities in Iraq. In fact, I'm fairly certain they are not. Perhaps you could provide a link? Actually, Ogami, the World Court wouldn't be able to get involved in Iraq, since nobody has presented a case to them. Maybe the ICC would get involved, but I doubt the US would allow that.
Where was the World Court? Ogami, I'm starting to think you don't understand precisely what is the function of the court, and what is the function of the UN. Each has their own purview in regards to international affairs, and nobody needs a court to say that aggressive attacks against a neighbouring country is in violation of international law. That's really the point, Ogami, the Court interprets international law in regard to specific incidents, it judges legal disputes, usually between two nations. I'm fairly certain neither Israel nor any of its neighbours took their dispute to the World Court, so no judgement was ever offered. It's not akin to the Security Council, Ogami, so you should probably not expect them to make statements like the UN does. Expect instead legal opinions, just like a court usually does present
Perhaps you missed the essential point, Ogami, the Palestinians are enduring hardships. Now, let's try this at home. When you wake up and go to work, Ogami, stop every 10-15 blocks, and wait at least a couple of hours. These would be Israeli roadblocks. Now, once a week, progress through at least three roadblocks, then turn back, this would be a roadblock that is closed, so now you can't go to work. Don't forget to wait the extra couple of hours on your way home, as well. Now, how productive do you think you'd be under those conditions? As well, the Palestinians are living as refugees, many of them fled from their homes, some still have title to property going back to the Ottoman Empire. So Ogami, move out of your home and take up in the cheapest motel you can find on the other side of town. Tell me how much you'll enjoy living there. Also, once a week, stay in your home, don't go to work, don't go to the store, this is a lockdown and curfew, courtesy of Israel. Now, Ogami, let's get to the truly tragic part, consider that many of your friends, relatives, associates, are hurt from this. A young child of a friend is killed by a stray bullet, an elderly mother of an associate died while trying to go to the hospital, held up at a roadblock. This isn't to minimise Israeli victims, but it's to demonstrate a fundamental point, Ogami, businesses tend not to thrive in such an environment. Besides, I've seen in the news a little while back how Israeli bulldozers destroyed a housing development in the West Bank financed by the international community. I also saw on the news a while back about how illegal Israeli settlers were literally attacking Palestinians who tried to harvest their fruit trees, which the settlers decided they wanted and wouldn't let the Palestinians earn the livelihood, as they'd done for half a century. Or how about on the news they showed a Palestinian hotel owner whose property is going to be destroyed to make room for the wall, in Palestinian territory. I'm certain I've barely scratched the surface, so you tell me, Ogami, what do you expect? There's no way Palestinians can prosper, and besides, why would Israel want them to? If you consider it, if the Palestinians prosper, they will gain power and strength, their population is growing much faster than Israel's, they could rival Israel within a generation or two. That's probably why Israel is willing to give up Gaza, described on the news as one of the most useless strips of land in the middle east, and why they are seizing so much of the West Bank.
Well, Ogami, if that's the answer, then why not follow Zack's suggestion, annex the whole of the occupied territories, and give the people citizenship in the new greater Israel-Palestine? That would solve a lot of problems, especially since the way Israel is carving up the West Bank, there's not going to be any hope for a viable Palestinian nation of their own.
Actually, Ogami, in a perverse way, that is precisely what a lot of Palestinians are doing, taking their destinies in their own hands, by joining the ranks of suicide bombers. It's the only way they believe they can fight for themselves. They certainly can't take the field against the Israeli army, what other weapon do they have?
Actually, Ogami, since Israel never was actually occupied and no annexation was ever undertaken, and no case was every introduced, the Court really had no reason to say much of anything at all on the matter.
I have to say, Ogami, so what if some Palestinians celebrated 9/11? Do they speak for every Palestinian? Does that mean they forfeit their human rights? Does that mean that Israel can trample all over them? Does that make them something less than human? Does that mean they don't deserve to be treated fairly? So some people were happy about 9/11, a lot of Palestinians were upset about it, too.
I have to agree with Zack, Ogami, it's like you're arguing about something completely different. I believe you have grossly misinterpreted the ruling, not to mention misunderstood the Court and its function. This was not a judgement against Israel's right to exist and defend itself, it's about a shameless, illegal, land grab. Wrap it up under all kinds of talk about democracy, right to defend itself, suicide bombings, and all that, but in the end, this wall is a land grab, simple as that. No wall made with the singular purpose of protecting Israel would have ever been designed in such a way. The court recognised that, and most of the world recognises it.