Home News UN top court ruling further isolates Israel

UN top court ruling further isolates Israel


In 2011, former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak warn If the conflict with the Palestinians is not resolved, Israel will face condemnation as a “diplomatic and political tsunami” as peace talks stall and revolution spreads across the Middle East.

To Israeli foreign policy analysts, the tsunami has never seemed so close.

On Friday, the International Court of Justice, a UN agency Orders Israel to suspend military operations in Rafah Military action in southern Gaza is a diplomatic and legal action against Israel (Xinhua)

The ruling comes just days after the prosecutor of another international tribunal, the International Criminal Court, called on Israeli Prime Minister arrested The move has been supported by some of Israel’s long-term partners, including France.

This order was issued on Three European countries The move comes after massive protests on U.S. college campuses over Israel’s actions in Gaza and Türkiye suspends trade with Israel and Belize, Bolivia and Colombia Sever diplomatic relations with Israel.

“It’s not the level of isolation you’d find in North Korea, Belarus or Myanmar — but it’s isolated,” said Alon Pinkas, Israel’s former consul general in New York. “It’s very stressful.”

The latest move by the International Court of Justice may not have an immediate practical effect: Under the terms of the order, Israel has a month to show how it will comply with its instructions. Even if Israel ignores the order, the International Court of Justice has no way to enforce it. In theory, the UN Security Council could issue a resolution on the matter, but Israel’s most powerful ally, the United States, has a permanent seat on the Security Council and can therefore veto any measures against Israel.

But overall, the moves against Israel point not only to Israel’s declining international reputation but also to the waning influence of the United States, as the United States becomes increasingly unable to prevent U.S. allies and international institutions from targeting its key partner in the Middle East, said Itamar Rabinovich, a former Israeli ambassador to Washington.

“The rules of international politics have changed,” Mr. Rabinovich said.

“The rest of the world is outmaneuvering the United States,” Rabinovich said. “They’re saying, ‘We can’t beat you at the United Nations, but we now have two international tribunals that we’re going to move to places you can’t control.'”

Against this backdrop, Israel’s other staunch allies, such as the United States and Germany, have adopted a more critical tone toward the Israeli government while trying to defend it against outside condemnation.

In the second week of the war, President Biden flew to Israel with a clear message: “You are not alone.” But in recent months he has expressed increasing concern about Israel’s pushback in Gaza, calling its strategy a “mistake” and some actions “outrageous.”

he still pause The delivery of bombs to Israel indicated his opposition to Israel’s planned invasion of the center of Rafah.

Germany’s position has also subtly changed, with Chancellor Olaf Scholz asking during a visit to Tel Aviv in March: “No matter how important this goal is, does it justify such a high cost?”

Still, Israel may feel able to continue the war as long as the United States continues to provide the bulk of its financial and military aid. In April, the U.S. Congress voted to provide Israel with an additional $15 billion in military aid, highlighting that Washington generally continues to act in Israel’s favor, despite verbal reservations from some U.S. leaders.

Biden needs to weigh any further action against Israel against the political cost. While a tougher stance could boost his popularity with left-wing supporters, it could also allow Republicans to present themselves as better allies of Israel. House Speaker Mike Johnson has been hinting for weeks that he intends to invite Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to address Congress.

However, analysts say the actions against the government in Israel could strengthen Netanyahu’s hand as the court ruling has prompted ministers to present a united front after they publicly opposed his leadership days ago.

The condemnation from foreign governments and institutions also provides Netanyahu with another opportunity to present himself as a defender of Israel. Strengthening its waning domestic supportsaid Mr. Pincus, a former diplomat.

“It fits his point: The whole world was against us, and I stood strong,” he said.

Netanyahu’s critics, however, say Israel would be in a higher position if Netanyahu had not squandered the goodwill shown by the Israeli people following the Oct. 7 Hamas-led attack on Israel.

Opposition to Israel’s war efforts was fueled in part by fiery rhetoric from government ministers who called for Israel to take permanent control of Gaza or even drop atomic bombs on the region. Israeli security services also routinely failed to prevent Israeli civilians from obstructing aid convoys and looting their cargo.

Israeli opposition leader Yair Lapid criticized the court’s ruling, noting that “Israel is a country that has been brutally attacked by Gaza and is forced to defend itself against attacks by terrorist organizations.” But he also said the ruling could have been avoided if “a sane and professional government had stopped ministers from making crazy statements, stopped the criminals who burned aid vehicles, and done quiet and effective political work.”

Israel’s isolation has extended to the cultural and academic worlds, with calls for a boycott of Israeli artists and universities growing for decades.

In recent months, universities in countries including Ireland, the Netherlands, Norway, Slovenia and Spain have announced they have severed ties with Israeli universities or are considering doing so.

“We wish to make it clear that the current war being waged by the State of Israel in Gaza is unacceptable and undermines the democratic foundations on which all universities must be built,” the University of Southeastern Norway said in a statement. statement In February this year, the university terminated its exchange programs with two Israeli universities.

Thousands of artists sign An open letter in February called on organizers of the Venice Biennale, one of the art world’s most important festivals, to ban Israel from this year’s event.

Although the festival ignored the petition, the Israeli team chose closure The exhibition will remain closed to the public until a ceasefire is reached. But that failed to quell opposition to their presence, with more than 100 protesters — some of them artists participating in the Biennale — procession In April, Palestinian people shouted “Long Live Palestine” at a festival.

Johnson Rice Reporting from Tel Aviv Jonathan Rosen From Jerusalem.

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