When Is It a War Crime to Defend Yourself? If You’re an Israeli.

Yesterday, Amnesty International issued its latest broadside at the State of Israel. The group’s report, titled “Black Friday: Carnage in Rafah” dutifully reported at length by the New York Times, seeks to portray an incident from last summer’s war in Gaza as an example of  particularly awful Israeli war crimes involving shelling of civilian areas and egregious loss of life. But, as with most such accusations, the closer you look at the charge the more it becomes clear that the point of the exercise isn’t merely a supposed quest for justice for dead Palestinians. While this must be seen in the context of a campaign to prepare war crimes charges against the Israel Defense Forces before the International Criminal Court that was recently joined by the Palestinian Authority, the effort has a broader purpose than merely beginning a human rights prosecution before that body. By expending a great deal of its limited resources on this one incident, Amnesty is seeking to make a much broader political point: delegitimizing Israeli self-defense under virtually any circumstances.

1
Shares
Google+ Print

When Is It a War Crime to Defend Yourself? If You’re an Israeli.

Must-Reads from Magazine

Qods Force Speaks on Iran Governance?

Qasem Soleimani prepares to make his move.

The Qods Force is the elite unit of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps charged with exporting Iran’s revolution. In practical terms, this means terror sponsorship worldwide and support for insurgency and proxy groups in Iraq, Lebanon, Yemen, Afghanistan, and Bahrain.

8
Shares
Google+ Print

So Much for ‘RyanCare’

Paul Ryan outmaneuvered the Trump wing on health care.

If you thought that winning both chambers of Congress, the White House, and the most state-level offices in almost 100 years had put the Republican civil war to bed, you thought wrong. The ideological struggle within the Republican Party that typified the 2016 election cycle has subsided, but conservatives, populists, and moderates are still waging a war of ideas. The stakes of the fight are nothing less than dominance within the American right, and the latest battlefield on which that struggle is being waged is the fight over ObamaCare’s replacement. For many on the right, the first draft of the GOP’s bill to replace the Affordable Care Act was a dud. Fearing, perhaps correctly, that whoever took ownership of the bill would one day live to regret it, Donald Trump’s backers in right-leaning media desperately sought to brand the bill “RyanCare.” President Trump isn’t playing along.

18
Shares
Google+ Print

The Curious Iranian Yellowcake Deal

What did Ernest Moniz negotiate for the Iranians?

A month ago, news broke that Iran planned to purchase 950 tons of yellowcake from Kazakhstan. Here’s Radio Free Europe, for example:

Iran says it has requested to buy 950 tons of uranium ore from Kazakhstan over three years to help develop its civil reactor program. Tehran has asked a body overseeing its 2015 nuclear deal with world powers to approve the purchase and is still awaiting Britain’s agreement, the ISNA news agency quoted Ali Akbar Salehi, head of Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization, as saying on February 25. Salehi also said Iran expects to get Russian help in producing nuclear fuel.

The Iranian announcement raised eyebrows in Congress, if nothing else because it once again raised the specter of the secret side deals and understandings struck by nuclear negotiators with Iran. Such agreements would have been illicitly withheld from Congress by the White House and State Department before the key vote on the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action.

11
Shares
Google+ Print

Iran’s Emboldened U.S. Lobby

What services is NIAC performing for the regime in Tehran?

The National Iranian American Council (NIAC) has long been sensitive about accusations that it acts as, at best, a de facto lobby for the Islamic Republic of Iran and, at worst, an unregistered foreign agent on behalf of the Iranian regime.

29
Shares
Google+ Print

The U.S. Human Rights Report Travesty

Anti-Israel bias masquerading as human rights advocacy.

There’s been a lot of talk lately about the Trump Administration’s plan to slash funding for the State Department, so I’d like to offer my own modest proposal in that direction: Kill the department’s human rights bureau.