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January 23, 2015 2:59 pm

The Folly of Partition: ICC Ruling Seals Fate of Gaza Residents

avatar by Harry Ben-Zvi and Gidon Ben-Zvi

An ICC meeting. Photo: ICC Website.

The International Criminal Court’s (ICC) decision to pursue a war crimes probe against Israel over the War in Gaza is the latest twist in the quixotic quest to end the Israeli-Arab conflict.

Israel’s 2005 de-facto partition via unilateral withdrawal from the Gaza Strip set the spark that led to Operation Protective Edge, for which the government of Israel is to be investigated by the ICC.

One can make the argument that the presence of 8,000 Jewish men, women, and children who lived in Gaza until 2005 did not contribute to a peaceful resolution between Israel and her neighbors. During the occupation, however, no rockets were hurled from Jewish kindergartens at Arab homes; no tunnels were dug with the intention of executing acts of mass murder; and no Jewish men, women, or children were kept in Gaza against their will.

Since the partition, meant to facilitate Arab self-government, Hamas has created a terrorist caliphate that rules at the expense of 1.7 million Arabs in Gaza.

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Hamas-ruled Gaza is defined by corruption, stagnant economic growth, rampant poverty, high unemployment, high illiteracy rates, high mortality rates, suppression of the press, as well as discriminatory policies against women, gays, and other minorities.

Moreover, billions of dollars in foreign aid meant to build infrastructure for Gaza residents (roads, power grids, schools, sewage, transit, etc.) have been siphoned off by local oligarchs to build villas, pad foreign bank accounts, and transform the Strip into one giant forward base of operations for an ongoing war of extermination against Israel.

The ICC may want to investigate the war crimes committed by the Palestinians during its “probe.”

The ICC’s decision effectively rejects a century of Jewish reconciliation efforts: acceptance of partition, failure to annex and populate the West Bank, and the recognition of a new independent Arab entity in areas known until very recently as Judea and Samaria.

Tragically, partition has served the interests of neither Israelis nor Gazans. Quite the contrary, it has both condemned nearly two million people to a fate worse than death on one side, and placed nearly eight million people within range of rocket fire on the other.

Israel, a vibrant, thriving – if wildly imperfect – exercise in Middle East democracy, will weather the tempest being kicked up by a pack of lawyers in The Hague.

However, this is a dark day for those forsaken men, women, and children living under Hamas’ jackboot of hate and terror.

The ICC, by delegitimizing one sovereign nation’s right to defend itself, has granted the Islamist Jihadists cover to commit acts of exceptional barbarity inside the Gaza Strip – and unleash another wave of violence against Israel and its allies in the near future.

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