Lawfare Update: Can Israel Defend Its Borders? | American Center for Law and Justice
  Search  |  Login  |  Register

ACLJ Profile Completion

Verified

By David French1310072630000

In a previous post, I defined lawfare as a form of asymmetric warfare that abuses domestic and international legal norms to accomplish tactical and strategic goals that can’t be won on the battlefield. Today brings news of the latest example, a U.N. report accusing Israel of violating U.N. resolutions when it responded with deadly force when demonstrators attempted to breach its border fence in May.

This critique rests on an utterly novel reinterpretation of international law. To recap, Israel remains in the midst of a multi-decade face-off against states (and terrorist entities) that refuse to recognize its borders and indeed its very right to exist. Despite decades of military conflict and multiple shooting wars, Israel has not been dislodged, and there is zero indication that Syria, Lebanon, Hezbollah, or any organized entity in the Middle East possesses the raw military power to move Israel from its current borders. Further, under international law, a sovereign nation has the ability to use armed force to defend its borders against incursions from belligerent states and belligerent entities.

On May 15, 2011, thousands of protesters — acting with the consent and cooperation of forces hostile to Israel — stormed Israel’s border fence. A large number of those protesters engaged in violent acts, including throwing stones, “petrol bombs,” and attempting to physically tear down the fence itself. Israel issued verbal warnings, fired warning shots, and then — finally — used deadly force. Could Israel have accomplished the same goals with different tactics (such as tear gas or other riot control mechanisms)? Perhaps. Was Israel required to use such tactics to defend its border? Absolutely not.

Indeed, international mandates requiring the use of nonlethal force do nothing more than encourage further incursions and diminish Israel’s ability to defend its borders. But that of course is the core goal of lawfare — to win for Hezbollah a victory in New York that it could never win in Israel.

Latest in
Israel

Defunding UNRWA is the Right Move

By Jay Sekulow1536940048882

President Trump’s decision to defund the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) is, of course, the right move from a legal perspective, but lest there be any confusion, it also is the just and empathetic response towards an organization that long has done a disservice to the very population...

read more

Anti-Semitic Org Conference to be at Major University

By ACLJ.org1536848244521

The ACLJ is directly engaged in fighting anti-Semitism all over the world and inside the United Nations. Now we’re fighting for Jewish students at universities right here at home. While we recently took legal action to fight for the Free Speech rights of a Christian to preach the Gospel on a public...

read more

International Criminal Court to Charge U.S. Soldiers?

By ACLJ.org1536614830271

As the International Criminal Court (ICC ) continues to pursue actions against U.S. citizens, including veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the United States today moved to counter this international body which has a questionable reputation. The Trump Administration plans to sanction the...

read more

U.S. Stops Funding to Palestinian Authority

By ACLJ.org1535734313994

Earlier this year, the President promised to cut funding to the terrorist affiliated Palestinian Authority (PA) as long as they continued to reward the families of terrorists. Now the President’s Administration has gone a step further, cutting off even more funding by withholding a significant sum...

read more