Monday, February 6th | 15 Shevat 5783

August 22, 2014 2:35 pm

Human Rights Watch Official Justifies Hamas’ Use of Terror Tunnels

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avatar by Petra Marquardt-Bigman

Tuesday night, just when Hamas got ready to launch rockets at Tel Aviv and Ben Gurion airport, the Executive Director of Human Rights Watch (HRW) Ken Roth took to Twitter to put in a good word for the terrorist organization.

So it seems that according to Roth, international humanitarian law allows Hamas to build and use tunnels in order to attack or capture combatants, i.e. IDF soldiers. But if Hamas uses the tunnels to attack civilians, they would be illegal under international humanitarian law – at least as interpreted by Roth, who is paid more than $400,000 per year for his expertise.

Due to a long list of terrorist attacks, Hamas has been designated a terrorist organization not only by Israel, but also by the U.S. and Europe. The group’s virulently anti-Semitic charter states already in its preamble:

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“Our struggle against the Jews is very great and very serious.” The charter’s article seven includes the notorious Islamic teaching:

“The Day of Judgement will not come about until Muslims fight the Jews (killing the Jews), when the Jew will hide behind stones and trees. The stones and trees will say O Muslims, O Abdulla, there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him.”

There are countless statements by prominent Hamas officials that reaffirm the group’s intense hatred for anything Jewish. Most recently, Hamas released a song that included the following lines:

“Annihilate all the Zionists! … Raze it [Israel] to the ground, exterminate the cockroaches’ nest, and banish all the Zionists.”

Perhaps Ken Roth is appalled by these statements, though I haven’t seen his protests. If you have, please note so in the comments and I will update this post.

However, just in the past 24 hours, Ken Roth has repeatedly made it very clear that he is appalled by what Israel’s supporters say and write: it’s just “so much squirming and screaming.”

Indeed, why can’t Israel’s supporters simply accept that the Executive Director of Human Rights Watch pronounces Hamas tunnels as perfectly legitimate under international humanitarian law as long as the genocidal anti-Semitic terrorist group will do its very best to avoid civilian casualties while attacking from the tunnels? But Ken Roth’s verdict on the Hamas tunnels has actually far-reaching implications, particularly since he also clarified today that acts of aggression are not necessarily a violation of international humanitarian law as long as non-combatants are not the target of the aggression.

This is definitely good news for Hamas and other jihadist groups all over the Middle East and beyond. It would mean, for example, that Hamas can tunnel with Ken Roth’s blessings under the Egyptian border to attack Egyptian soldiers. Hezbollah also knows now that Ken Roth sees nothing wrong if it tunnels into Israel to attack the IDF. And the blood-drenched jihadists of the newly formed Islamic State (IS) may now want to consider tunneling into Jordan to attack the Jordanian army. All these terror groups can feel confident that the Executive Director of Human Rights Watch will speak up for their right to tunnel wherever they want to attack the defense forces of another country.

There are also implications beyond the Middle East. The tunnels dug from North Korea to attack South Korea would presumably also get a nod of approval from Ken Roth; and while they are often described rather negatively as “Tunnels of Aggression,” we know now that the Executive Director of Human Rights Watch is very careful not to denounce aggression as long as it is done right.

That could also be good news for Iran and Hezbollah: since they have a well-known presence in South America, they could perhaps make use of the smuggling tunnels under the U.S. border with Mexico to attack the U.S., and as long as they are careful to target U.S. army units (or maybe border guards would also be OK?), they should be able to count on Ken Roth to defend the legitimacy of their attack.

Welcome to the brave new world of Human Rights Watch, where even the most depraved terrorist groups get a chance to exercise their human right to build and use tunnels to attack those who fight terrorism.

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