Newspaper logo  
 
 
Local Stories, Events

Ref. : Civic Events

Ref. : Arts & Education Events

Ref. : Public Service Notices

Books, Films, Arts & Education
Letters

Ref. : Letters to the editor

Health Care & Environment

04.18 'We Can Be Whatever We Have the Courage to See': New Video From AOC Envisions a #GreenNewDeal Future [7:35 video]

04.18 'Decades of denial': major report finds New Zealand's environment is in serious trouble

04.17 Thawing Permafrost Emitting Higher Levels of Potent Greenhouse Gas Than Previously Thought: Study

04.16 'That Backfired': Watch Bernie Sanders Counter Right-Wing Talking Point, Make Case for Medicare for All on Fox News

04.16 Cause of cancer is written into DNA of tumours, scientists find, creating a 'black box' for origin of disease

04.16 Scientists Unveil World's First Human Heart 3D-Printed From Patients' Own Cells

04.15 What It Was Like to Have a Baby in Sweden

04.14 'Shut the country down': British climate group Extinction Rebellion heads to US

04.13 With Youth Climate Actions Backed by Leading Experts, Latest Round of Protests Highlights Call for Bold and Urgent Action

04.11 Will You Rise Up for Climate Justice Next Week? Don’t Let Fatalism and Cynicism Hold You Back

04.11 300+ Groups to Congress: #GreenNewDeal 'Must Transform Our Food System and Revitalize Rural America'

04.10 Glaciers and arctic ice are vanishing. Time to get radical before it's too late [Willfully ignorant "conservatives" and corporately-bribed liberals diddle self-obsessively while life on earth dies]

04.10 Is there a beautiful, briny solution to the world’s clean water crisis?

04.08 'The perfect storm': hydrogen gains ground on LNG as alternative fuel [Good!]

04.08 Himalayan glaciers on the eve of destruction

04.08 Russia moves to free nearly 100 captive whales after outcry [Good!]

News Media Matters

04.12 DOJ Charging Docs: Julian Assange Committed Journalism

Daily: FAIR Blog
The Daily Howler

US Politics, Policy & 'Culture'

04.18 Top Democrats Accuse Barr of 'Acting to Protect Donald Trump' Ahead of Mueller Report Rollout

04.18 Bernie Sanders 'Raises the Bar Even Further' on Climate With Vow to Ban Fracking, All New Fossil Fuel Projects [Mindlessly killing ourselves must stop]

04.16 How Progressives Can Fix the Progressive Income Tax

04.16 Why the US Elected a Despot, and Why It's Poised To Do It Again

04.16 'This Is a Big Deal': Warren Vows to Ban New Leases for Fossil Fuel Drilling Offshore and on Public Lands

04.15 'We're not a dump' – poor Alabama towns struggle under the stench of toxic landfills

04.15 Bernie Sanders Accuses Liberal Think Tank of Smearing Progressive Candidates

Justice Matters
High Crimes

04.17 'Shameful': With Millions on Brink of Famine in Yemen, Trump Vetoes Resolution to End US Complicity

Economics & Corrupt Capitalism

04.17 A Path to Democratic Socialism Means a Path To Climate Justice

04.12 Socialism for the Rich, Capitalism for the Rest [4:30 video]

04.09 Neoliberalism promised freedom – instead it delivers stifling control [Walmartization]

04.09 Wall Street loves socialism for bankers – but not for ordinary people

International & Futurism

04.18 Half of England is owned by less than 1% of the population

04.18 Britain will have its second referendum – at the EU elections on 23 May

04.18 Hypocrisy without borders: the pomposity of Ivanka Trump’s trip to Africa

04.16 Our Zero Emission Future [Be smart or life dies]

04.16 'The Time for Excuses Is Over': Extinction Rebellion Protests Shut Down European Cities

04.16 The Trump-Netanyahu Alliance

04.15 The Guardian view on Extinction Rebellion: one small step

04.15 Only rebellion will prevent an ecological apocalypse

04.15 Thousands join Extinction Rebellion protests across London

04.15 Fear and despair engulf refugees in Libya's 'market of human beings' [EU policy should more directly minimize factors creating immigration. Essential infrastructure projects and jobs are desperately needed for villages in poverty, most especially including renewable energy, clean water and waste managment.]

We are a non-profit Internet-only newspaper publication founded in 1973. Your donation is essential to our survival.

You can also mail a check to:
Baltimore News Network, Inc.
P.O. Box 42581
Baltimore, MD 21284-2581
Google
This site Web
  Print view: The Russell Tribunal on Palestine: London Session
JUSTICE ANYONE?

The Russell Tribunal on Palestine: London Session

by Stephen Lendman
Wednesday, 24 November 2010
The Russell Tribunal on Palestine seeks to reaffirm the primacy of international law as the way to settle the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Launched in March 2009, "The Russell Tribunal on Palestine (RTP) seeks to reaffirm the primacy of international law as the (way to settle) the Israeli-Palestinian conflict." Its mandate focuses on "the enunciation of law by authoritative bodies," including International Court of Justice (ICJ) rulings and dozens of UN resolutions on Palestine with regard to binding international law.

RTP follows in the tradition of the BRussell Tribunal, named after noted philosopher, mathematician, and anti-war/anti-imperialism activist Bertrand Russell (1872 - 1970). Established in 1967 to investigate Vietnam war crimes, RTP's mandate is similar, its Tribunals collecting and presenting indictable evidence against Israel, complicit states, and corporate war profiteers. [An earlier article on its Barcelona Session.]

RTP's November 20-21 London Session

Before convening, RTP listed issues to be addressed, including:

  1. corporate involvement in Occupied Palestine, including illegal settlement activities;
  2. foreign banks and other financial institutions illegally financing and profiting from occupation and settlement activities;
  3. foreign and Israeli companies supplying products and services in Occupied Palestine; in addition, Israeli ones exporting agricultural produce and other products from settlements and West Bank industrial zones; and
  4. foreign corporations selling arms and "the infrastructure of war, occupation, colonisation, and repression" in Occupied Palestine; in addition, Israeli companies that export arms, munitions, repressive hardware or knowledge globally.

As in Barcelona, distinguished jurors were assembled, their names and credentials listed below. In addition, expert witnesses were invited to give testimony.

A public statement followed its conclusion, RTP noting (in advance) the failure thus far to act on the Goldstone Report, adding that "a people's tribunal held in the full glare of publicity will serve to fill an apparent void in the international legal system." Perhaps also galvanize future action.

Proceeding like a court case, RTP "heard compelling evidence of corporate complicity in Israeli violations of international law, relating to:"

  1. supplying arms for illegal conflicts;
  2. building and maintaining Israel's Separation Wall, in violation of the International Court of Justice's (ICJ) 2004 ruling, calling it illegal, ordering completed sections dismantled, and "all legislative and regulatory acts relating thereto" repealed or rendered "ineffective forthwith;"

    The ICJ also mandated reparations for the "requisition and destruction of homes, businesses, and agricultural holdings (and) to return the land, orchards, olive groves, and other immovable property seized," obligating member states to reject the illegal construction and demand Israel comply with international law.

    Israel spurned the ruling, the way it treats all international law, operating roguishly out-of-control, just like its Washington paymaster partner.

  3. "Establishing, maintaining and providing services, especially financial (ones) to illegal settlements, all of which have occurred in the context of an illegal occupation of Palestinian territory."

RTP said witnesses provided clear evidence of corporate culpability, exposing them "to legal liability for very serious violations of international human rights and humanitarian law."

RTP's March Barcelona Session also found EU member states complicit in Israeli lawlessness, including the illegal occupation, settlements, Separation Wall, Gaza siege, and repeated acts of aggression against Palestinian civilians and non-military targets, Cast Lead the clearest example.

RTP jurors were unequivocal saying "the international community is clearly in agreement that Israel is in flagrant disregard of its international obligations," adding that letting it continue is unacceptable. Israel's impunity, however, "set(s) it apart from the rest of the international community." Complicit corporations are just as culpable.

The London Session considered the following questions:

  1. What laws have corporations violated?
  2. What legal consequences do they face?
  3. What remedies are available, and what obligations do member states have to enforce them?

In early December, RTP's full London findings will be presented, its interim statement noting "the failure of states" to comply with their international law obligations. As a result, civil society acts instead, seeking vitally needed change. The growing boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement stands out for its importance, applying economic, political and cultural pressure on Israel to comply, or face painful consequences.

Corporations are also criminally involved. They can, and have been "the subject of citizen's movements that the RTP received evidence about, including:"

  • boycotts;
  • shareholders holding them accountable;
  • divestments by pension funds; and
  • various actions highlighting their complicity.

[A previous article addressed the issue.]

Civil society is doing plenty. It's time for states to do their part.

RTP invited 12 corporations and EU nations to London. All declined. Two additional sessions will keep highlighting their lawlessness. RTP's conclusions show at least some are criminally liable, including the following:

  1. G4S, a British/Danish corporation supplying West Bank checkpoints with scanning equipment and full body scanners;
  2. Elbit Systems, an Israeli company producing weapons technology, engines, and drones (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles - UAVs) for the IDF and global militaries;
  3. Caterpillar, producing modified military D9 bulldozers, used to demolish homes and villages, build the Separation Wall, and aid in urban warfare; in all cases, property is illegally destroyed and civilian deaths and injuries result;
  4. Cement Roadstone Holdings, an Irish corporation owning 25% of Mashav Initiative and Development Ltd, an Israeli company owner of Nesher Israel Cement Enterprises Ltd; it supplies 75 - 90% of all cement Israel uses in Occupied Palestine, including for settlement construction and the Separation Wall;
  5. Dexia, a Franco/Belgian company financing West Bank settlements through its Dexia Israel Public Finance Ltd;
  6. Veolia Transport, a French corporation involved in building East Jerusalem's light railway and operating bus services to Israeli settlements; and
  7. Carmel Agrexco, an Israeli company exporting oranges, olives, avocados, and other West Bank settlement produce.

G4S, Elbit Systems and Caterpillar actually promote their equipment usage during Cast Lead, contributing to massive destruction, loss of life, and serious injuries.

The evidence heard may be used in civil damage suits. It also shows complicity in crimes of war and against humanity, as well as pillaging natural resources. The Tribunal's full conclusions will offer detailed examples of potential litigation, as well as "highlight(ing) and encourag(ing) civil society/BDS actions that can achieve corporate accountability."

Two more Tribunals are planned. The third 2011 one in South Africa will address the applicability of Israeli apartheid. After the fourth session in America, later in the year, full conclusions and a final judgment will be published.

RTP Jurors
  1. Stephane Hessel, Ambassador of France, Honorary President of the RTP, France;
  2. Northern Ireland's Mairead Corrigan Maguire, 1976 Nobel Peace Laureate, a rare worthy recipient;
  3. South Africa's John Dugard, Professor of International Law and former UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights in the Palestinian Territories;
  4. Lord Anthony Gifford QC, UK barrister and Jamaican attorney at law;
  5. South Africa's Ronald Kasrils, writer, activist and former government minister;
  6. Britain's Michael Mansfield, barrister and President of the Haldane Society of Socialist Lawyers;
  7. Spain's Jose Antonio Martin Pallin, emeritus judge, Chamber II, Supreme Court; and
  8. America's Cynthia McKinney, former congressional member and 2008 Green party presidential candidate.

Committed for peace, equity and justice, RTP provides heroic support for Palestine. More information can be found on its web site.


Stephen Lendman

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. His blog is sjlendman.blogspot.com.

Listen to Lendman's cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network Thursdays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.

Mr. Lendman's stories are republished in the Baltimore Chronicle with permission of the author.



Copyright © 2010 The Baltimore News Network. All rights reserved.

Republication or redistribution of Baltimore Chronicle content is expressly prohibited without their prior written consent.

Baltimore News Network, Inc., sponsor of this web site, is a nonprofit organization and does not make political endorsements. The opinions expressed in stories posted on this web site are the authors' own.

This story was published on November 24, 2010.
 

Public Service Ads: