General Question

luigirovatti's avatar

Why has the ICC's application for arrest warrant against Netanyahu caused such a major controversy?

Asked by luigirovatti (2863points) 1 week ago

The warrant still needs to be approved by a panel, it could be refused. True, it creates a precedent, but as in all trials, Netanyahu is innocent to the last degree of guilt. I mean, just think of the worldwide news of the arrest warrant, only to be completely reversed say a month later. The world would talk about this for weeks and would polarize commenters. The world needs stability, they cannot say such a scandalous news then return to normal. Put this way, it’s not possible.

For me, ‘til it’s approved, this warrant reflects merely the evaluation of a single man, not the completion of ICC judicial process.

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16 Answers

hat's avatar

Because Israel (and the West) doesn’t feel it needs to follow international law.
And if/when arrest warrants are issued for Netanyahu, the logical conclusion would be that Biden and others would be next, since they have enabled, supported, and funded these crimes against humanity.

luigirovatti's avatar

@hat: Yes, and the press has all the right in the world to discuss all the dramatic consequences of the warrant, AFTER it’s been officially approved. Right now, it’s smoke and mirrors.

Kropotkin's avatar

It’s not just smoke and mirrors.

Khan is a reputedly conservative (in the sense that he’s restrained and doesn’t just apply for warrants without very good evidence), and an extremely experienced prosecutor and expert in international and human rights law.

His statement carries a weight because of his credibility and authority on this matter.

It’s been a PR disaster for Netanyahu and has damaged Israel’s international stature even more.

As usual with the powerful and arrogant, a statement that should provoke some self-reflection has instead shown Netanyahu and others like him to be abject racists. That the ICC is only for Africans. That it’s an outrage for Netanyahu and Gallant to be judged by universal standards that happen to also accuse Hamas leaders, because apparently law is only for less powerful brown people.

There is now so much pressure on the ICC to deny the application for arrest, as well as overtly hostile threats being made against it and Khan, that if the arrest warrant doesn’t go through we can plausibly believe it will be for political rather than legal and evidentiary reasons. The controversy doesn’t end.

Zaku's avatar

I think it casts more light than usual on the hypocricy and impotence of international law.

Laws only provide order and justice when they are applied evenly, honestly, impartially, reliably and effectively, and that’s never been done to all world leaders. If it were, it’d be quite a game-changer. But there have been, and continue to be, countless cases of crimes against humanity perpetrated by governments around the world, and the few cases where justice is served in response are the rare exceptions.

It seems to me that if/when the world were ready for effective international law holding national leaders accountable, it would be more rational and effective to go after the worst and clearest offenders first, and that it needs to be done with the qualities I mentioned above.

I think Netanyahu is terrible, but I don’t think he should be arrested if many others aren’t also arrested.

For example:

* Russia’s invasion and crimes against Ukranian and Russian citizens
* China’s genocide and crimes against humanity against Uyghurs
* ethnic cleansing in Ethiopia
* crimes against humanity in Sudan
* Brazilian/corporate genocide of indigenous people in the Amazon

hat's avatar

@Zaku – I’m no expert in the ICC or international law, but I think some of this stuff is driven by logistics and who is signatory to Rome Statute (again, I could be wrong). But it’s worth noting that the ICC issued arrest warrant for Putin in March 2003, and I believe there were arrest warrants issued for Al Bashir years earlier.

Keeping this “General”-safe, but I do find it odd that there would be pushback on even the potential of arrest warrants issued for a rogue, terror state currently involved in mass murder and ethnic cleansing. And it’s not exactly like these warrants come with any real consequences. They are symbolic and a statement for sure. But these are crimial entities that are way above any concept of international law.

flutherother's avatar

It is plain to me that Netanyahu’s assault on Gaza has become an abomination that cannot continue to be tolerated. Comparing the present and ongoing situation in Gaza with Putin’s invasion of Ukraine or Brazil’s treatment of its indigenous peoples does nothing to excuse Israel for its own war crimes. That Netanyahu can call the incineration of 45 people in Rafah a “mishap” just shows how far the desensitization has gone and the need for an independent adjudicator to step in to remind us of our humanity.

hat's avatar

* March 2023, not 2003

ragingloli's avatar

It is another demonstration of the double standard the west has about international law, and how a lot of it is pure convenience and virtue signalling.
Quick to condemn others of crimes, but instantly outraged when one of their own is attempted to be held to account.
Biden praised the ICC when they posted the arrest warrant for Putin, then cried foul when both Netanyahoo may face the same treatment for the same crimes.
The colonies specifically passed a law authorising themselves to send a military assault force to the ICC if a colonial were to be tried.

As usual, “rules for thee, but not for me”.

MrGrimm888's avatar

@Zaku Well said, as far as the ICC’s impotence.
That one word, may be the most accurate way to describe it.

They have a voice, but no teeth.

Sadly. I suspect the ICC, is a victim of its own internal corruption and back scratching.

The concept, of the warrant, is definitely more of a sign that Bibi needs to snap out of this.
He’s been told in every way possible, by ALL of his allies, and enemies, to stop this madness. Or at least pause, and reassess the situation.
The scenario, has been ever evolving.
Things aren’t the same now, as they were on October 8th.
The IDF’s clearly personal, and reckless behavior has drawn the ire of the majority of the world.

Revenge, and essentially genocide, has seemed to be the motivation for continued IDF action.
The ME, is always such a mess.

The places in the world that need the ICC the most, are one’s with no way to defend themselves. Yet, the ICC doesn’t scare any of the people they go after.
I believe the night of October 7th, Netanyahu decided then and there, this would be the last war. One way, or the other.
That unfortunately only serves Israel. But does it even serve them, to paint themselves as the bad guy?

There is controversy, because both Gazans and Israelis, are to blame for this whole situation.
They have spent all their efforts hating one another. Teaching generations of children, to hate the people on the other side.
Dehumanizing each other.

I’ve got another word. Feckless.

Zaku's avatar

@ragingloli The same crimes? Putin’s warrant was for “unlawful deportation of children”.

Demosthenes's avatar

It’s a symbolic move for certain, but even that is going too far for the pro-Israel crowd. Israel is increasingly becoming a pariah state, and the international backlash to the assault on Gaza is making the US look bad. So it doesn’t matter if the warrant doesn’t go through (and is symbolic at best even if it does); the damage is done.

Lightlyseared's avatar

It’s US policy not to follow international law and Israel follows the US.

KNOWITALL's avatar

The blowback is because Israel did not start this but they are not backing off.

The problem is that the ICC has no enforcement mechanism against state parties who refuse to cooperate.

luigirovatti's avatar

In any case, the arrest warrants signal that there’s no hope to rescue the hostages anymore. Israel won’t necessarily stop the war even if Netanyahu was arrested. The PM formed a coalition with the far right, without which he cannot govern. He has the US on one side, the far right on the other. It’s an impossible situation.

MrGrimm888's avatar

^“Impossible situation.”
Yes. And there is no real “right” answer, that will magically change the situation.

Netanyahu’s efforts, told me he NEVER thought of the hostages as anything but a lost cause.
You don’t carpet bomb an area, if you have ANY concern for ANY life in the target zone.
At the time the IDF started their invasion it was VERY possible, that some or all of the hostages were under the area being bombed. Therefore we can easily deduce, the hostages survival was not a variable in their attack plans.
I do believe Bibi is upset about the hostages, but I think he quickly counted them as martyrs, and went for maximum destruction of Gaza.
It’s crystal clear, the IDF wasn’t planning on avoiding civilian casualties either.

As soon as I saw the first footage of October 7th, I was certainly appalled and sickened by the atrocities.
However. My fear quickly shifted to the Gazan people.
And so far, it’s been worse than I had predicted.
I foolishly thought that Netanyahu would be pissed, but that he wouldn’t endanger Israel further with his response.
I was wrong.

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