Crimes against humanity are a very serious matter. While we can trace the history of the laws enacted to protect us from such crimes back to the 1860s, the most famous event in history that placed these acts back on the global map was probably the “Nuremberg Trials” that took place as a result of World War Two and the Holocaust.
At he close of the war, in Article 6 of the “Nuremberg Trial Proceedings Charter of the International Military Tribunal”, in order to better define crimes against humanity, the allies added the following:
CRIMES AGAINST HUMANITY: namely, murder, extermination, enslavement, deportation, and other inhumane acts committed against any civilian population, before or during the war; or persecutions on political, racial or religious grounds in execution of or in connection with any crime within the jurisdiction of the Tribunal, whether or not in violation of the domestic law of the country where perpetrated.
This definition while non-exhaustive, provides a fair amount of details to help one understand what constitutes crimes against humanity. Frankly, from this definition, we can easily create a list of countries that in the last several decades would have no choice but to plead GUILTY when some of their actions would come under the scrutiny of such laws.
I can think of Darfur, Sudan and its ongoing genocide, or North Korea internment camps and child forced labor, not to mention Syria’s current massacre of their own people and of Christians, and the list could go on, rightfully so! But of course, we also need to pay attention to Israel’s crimes against humanity, or do we?
If you tally up all the alleged reports of Israeli abuse, torture, killings, forced starvation inflicted on the Palestinian people, you would think that Israel is this big monster, like the new Nazis of the Middle East region on a mission to destroy the Palestinians. Oh, but wait, this is exactly what they are portrayed as, by their enemies, along with a very unscrupulous media and a largely ignorant global community.
While I would be dishonest to claim that all the Israeli settlements that we have seen come up over the last few years were all erected properly and without any mishaps, they are a far cry from qualifying as crimes against humanity. Additionally, my desire here is not to exonerate Israel of all responsibilities in the Middle East, but simply to assess and compare sides.
Israel continues to be showered with missiles shot indiscriminately at soldiers AND civilians from every corner of the country. The danger of terrorism is part of the fabric of Israeli societal behavior. Terrorism happens in Israel and it isn’t about to cease any time soon. I will be the first one to agree that Israel’s right to the land can be argued about, from both sides of the camp, even though I unequivocally see a biblical validation of Israel as belonging to the Jewish people by God’s decree. A dialogue should exist, simply because dialogue is healthy. This being said, disagreements shouldn’t lead to terror attacks on Israel.
Add to that, Israel’s self-controlled retaliatory attitude towards her enemies and you come up with anything but crimes against humanity, unless of course, the definitions are different for Israel and the rest of the world. So maybe it is time to reveal some of Israel’s most recent “crimes against humanity”.
• DISASTER RELIEF: Recently, Israel sent a relief team of 148 people to the Philippines to help with the aftermath of Typhoon Haiyan, and this regardless of the fact that the Philippines voted in favor of the recognition of Palestine at the UN in 2012. The Israeli team was one of the first on the ground within 48 hours of the disaster, as many more joined the humanitarian effort. Jewish people continue to donate through “The American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee”. We also remember the tremendous help Israel offered to Haiti as they were the FIRST to offer relief and put up a very instrumental makeshift hospital in 2010. Where was Palestine in the process? Nowhere to be found!
If accused of being very responsive and instrumental in saving many lives, I FIND ISRAEL GUILTY!
• MEDICAL ASSISTANCE: Not too long ago, we also witnessed how the grand daughter of Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh was brought over the border to an Israeli hospital to be treated for a serious digestive infection. While everything possible was attempted, News reports told us that the one-year old girl was returned to Gaza “clinically dead”. It iwas a very sad and regrettable outcome for the girl and her family who all deserve our prayers. It was somewhat ironic that Palestinians would send her to a hospital that had to be fortified to survive regular rocket launches from Gaza. Over 200 Palestinian children are treated there every year. The girl’s grandfather had also recently called on the Palestinians to gather up for a Third Intifada.
If accused of trying to save a life, ANY LIFE even from Gaza, in one of their hospitals, I FIND ISRAEL GUILTY!
• LIFE CHANGING INVENTIONS: A few months back, Given Imaging, Israeli inventors of the PillCam received FDA approval for the use of a 11mm pill that includes a camera, light, battery, radio and antenna. If things keep moving, the pill could soon replace the ordeal of a colonoscopy. I can guarantee you that when the PillCam hits the market, it will also be available for Palestinians and anybody else who might not be a friend of Israel. This is one of a myriad of inventions and innovations coming out of Israel to make the world a better place. I wonder if it will end-up being boycotted by the BDS movement?
If accused of unceasingly introducing new inventions to improve our global community, I FIND ISRAEL GUILTY!
So here it is in a nutshell, the very country accused of crimes against humanity happens to be the only democracy in the Middle East. Unless we are dealing with two definitions of what a crime against humanity is, it is time to recognize the libelous picture painted of the Jewish people. Israel is inhabited by a unique people preserved by God, a people who happens to be very creative and uniquely talented to make our world a better place.
The Jewish people always had enemies and always will, but in closing, I want to concentrate on one of their many friends over the years who spoke very eloquently in favor of my people. His words echo the message of the Bible.
John Quincy Adams (1735-1826), the second President of the United States said:“I will insist the Hebrews have [contributed] more to civilize men than any other nation. If I was an atheist and believed in blind eternal fate, I should still believe that fate had ordained the Jews to be the most essential instrument for civilizing the nations… They are the most glorious nation that ever inhabited this Earth.”