Uri Avnery- the Noam Chomsky of Israel

Under a black flagNoam Chomsky is now widely recognized world wide as America’s most prominent dissident, and that is exactly the same role that Uri Avnery plays in being seen world wide as Israel’s most prominent dissident. Following is Uri Avnery speaking about the role of the Israeli military’s house rabbis in the commission of war crimes by the ‘Jewish State’.

‘In the last decades, the state-financed religious educational system has churned out “rabbis” who are more like medieval Christian priests than the Jewish sages of Poland or Morocco. This system indoctrinates its pupils with a violent tribal cult, totally ethnocentric, which sees in the whole of world history nothing but an endless story of Jewish victimhood. This is a religion of a Chosen People, indifferent to others, a religion without compassion for anyone who is not Jewish, which glorifies the God-decreed genocide described in the Biblical book of Joshua.’

His entire comments about Israel’s most recent war crimes committed in Gaza can be read in his most recent essay, Black Flag.

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3 Responses to Uri Avnery- the Noam Chomsky of Israel

  1. Avatar Don says:

    With respect to the Spanish judge’s decision to which Mr. Avnery referred, it is little more than a cheap political stunt.

    The capacity to exploit what are known as universal jurisdiction laws for political purposes, undermines the longstanding principle of diplomatic immunity that is so crucial to the exercise of foreign relations between countries and the integrity of representative and judicial institutions in the country whose sovereignty is violated.

    In a piece published in the July/August 2001 edition of Foreign Affairs former U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger highlighted the crux of the inherent problem associated with the concept of universal jurisdiction. He wrote:

    But any universal system should contain procedures not only to punish the wicked but also to constrain the righteous. It must not allow legal principles to be used as weapons to settle political scores. Questions such as these must therefore be answered: What legal norms are being applied? What are the rules of evidence? What safeguards exist for the defendant? And how will prosecutions affect other fundamental foreign policy objectives and interests?

    Aside from political abuse, the application of universal jurisdiction presents a genuine danger of an absence of due process. Kissinger continued:

    Once extradition procedures are in train, they develop a momentum of their own. The accused is not allowed to challenge the substantive merit of the case and instead is confined to procedural issues: that there was, say, some technical flaw in the extradition request, that the judicial system of the requesting country is incapable of providing a fair hearing, or that the crime for which the extradition is sought is not treated as a crime in the country from which extradition has been requested — thereby conceding much of the merit of the charge. Meanwhile, while these claims are being considered by the judicial system of the country from which extradition is sought, the accused remains in some form of detention, possibly for years. Such procedures provide an opportunity for political harassment long before the accused is in a position to present any defense. It would be ironic if a doctrine designed to transcend the political process turns into a means to pursue political enemies rather than universal justice.

    Cornell University Professor of Government Jeremy Rabkin wrote of a trend toward internationalizing law:

    Freed from its traditional moorings, international law no longer needs to be demonstrated by actual practice… International human rights law is not the product of court rulings, but of international conferences. Abstract pronouncements are enough. At that, they need not even be the authoritative pronouncements of supreme governmental authorities.

    Yet, it is those “abstract pronouncements” that have never been adopted in treaties or by national legislatures that can be the basis for prosecution under the principle of universal jurisdiction. Not surprisingly, and quite rightly in my view, former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher warned that the internationalization of law “will itself lead to injustice.” She advised that the U.S. “use its full weight to oppose further attempts to curtail sovereign immunity or to claim universal jurisdiction over matters which are properly left to democratic decisions and national courts.” After all, once state sovereignty is suppressed, democratic governance and national courts, become increasingly relevant. Free nations are not likely to desire an outcome that renders their capacity to choose for themselves impotent. “We don’t really want to live in a world where international lawyers or some other guild of self-appointed global managers can supply all the answers to all the big questions. In the end, very few countries would want to live in such a world,” Rabkin explained.

    Fortunately, it appears that Spain may enact legislation to rein in the kind of political abuses behind the judge’s decision. As for the current case, I expect that it will fail or be reversed by a higher court.

  2. Avatar Tony Logan says:

    You’re friends with Alberto Gonzales aren’t you, ‘Don’?

  3. Avatar Don says:

    The former attorney general is irrelevant to the allegations directed at Israel.

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