Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called on U.S. President Donald Trump to impose sanctions on the International Criminal Court (ICC), due to the recent decision by its Chief Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda to launch an investigation into Palestinian allegations of Israeli war crimes and crimes against humanity.
In an interview with Mark Crouch of the Trinity Broadcasting Network, the Israeli leader “I think that everybody should rise up against this. The U.S. government, under President Trump, has spoken forcefully against the ICC for this travesty, and I urge all your viewers to do the same – to ask for concrete actions, sanctions against the international Court, its officials, its prosecutors, everyone.”
Netanyahu further denounced the ICC move as “basically on a full-frontal attack on the democracies – both on the democracies’ right to defend themselves, and on Israel’s right, and the Jewish people’s right to live in their ancestral homeland, the Land of Israel.”
The Palestinian claims of “Israeli war crimes” into which the ICC Chief Prosecutor will investigate center on the continued construction of civilian housing in East Jerusalem and the West Bank, which includes the Jordan Valley and the Biblical districts of Judea and Samaria. Legality of the petition is based on United Nations Security Council Resolution 2334, which vigorously condemns Israel’s establishment of settlements on lands the document defines as “Palestinian territory occupied since 1967, including East Jerusalem.”
To Israel’s dismay, S/RES/2334 was adopted 23 December 2016 by a 14-member vote, with none against. The U.S. Administration of then-President Barack Obama abstained, and refused to exercise its power to veto the bill.
Israeli sovereignty over its ancestral homeland has come under legal scrutiny since the resolution’s passage due to its non-recognition of Israel’s presence in any territories acquired during the 1967 Six Day War Middle East war, thus relegating Jewish presence in those areas as “a flagrant violation under international law.”
Palestinian leadership in the West Bank city of Ramallah has persistently lobbied for an ICC investigation into the criminal allegations against Israel. Speaking from his office in Jericho, Chief Palestinian Negotiator Saeb Erekat insisted that what he referred to as “Israeli colonial settlements” are not only “illegal under international law,” but “tantamount to war crimes,” adding that “ignoring facts don’t mean they don’t exist.”
ICC Chief Prosecutor Bensouda appears to have accepted the Islamist Palestinian narrative despite Israel’s vocal objections that any such investigation that is based on a blatant rejection of the Biblical connection of the Jewish people to their ancestral homeland. During the announcement of her decision, she proclaimed “”In brief, I am satisfied (1) that war crimes have been or are being committed in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and the Gaza Strip ; (2) that potential cases arising from the situation would be admissible; and (3) there are no substantial reasons to believe that an investigation would not serve the interests of justice.”
While speaking with TBN in Jerusalem, Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu highlighted the resolve of the Jewish State to thwart any potential danger that could culminate into another Holocaust. “A third of the Jewish people went up in flames, and there was nothing we could do,” said the leader of the Jewish State, adding that, “Now, after the Holocaust and the State of Israel was established, the attempts to destroy the Jewish people have not disappeared.”
After pointing out that “Iran openly declares every day that it wants to wipe Israel off the face of the earth,”Netanyahu stressed that “We now have the capacity to defend ourselves.” He said he believes “the lesson of Auschwitz” is (1) “stop bad things when they’re small, and Iran is a very bad thing. It’s not that small but it could get a lot bigger with nuclear weapons;” and (2) to “understand that the Jews will never ever again be defenseless in the face of those who want to destroy them.”