The International Court of Justice in The Hague has granted itself jurisdiction to hold a hearing on Israel’s fence next month. Shlomo Slonim in the Jerusalem Post explains why, as a matter of international law, Israel’s legal claim to the entire area of the former British Mandate (and thus its right to build any fence it wants in that area) is in accordance with international law. He goes on to make the more fundamental point that “the political question of the fence is not one for the court to decide since it is essentially a security issue involving the very existence of a state. No other state would countenance continuous aggression by means of terrorist suicide bombers, and Israel is fully entitled to ward off such attacks by every means possible.” Clifford May in the Washington Times makes a similar argument, pointing to other countries, including the U.S., that have erected a fence under less duress than Israel faces.
Those who urge the U.S. to sign on to various international law initiatives such as the International Criminal Court pretend when doing so that such courts will not engage in partisan politicking. But the assertion of jurisdiction over the matter of Israel’s fence shows that this claim is lie, assuming that it is even coherent enough to be judged as such.
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