Hague Decision on Security Fence 'Shocking'; ADL Says Israel Never Stood a Chance to Defend Itself
New York, NY, July 9, 2004 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) was shocked by today's advisory opinion of the International Court of Justice in The Hague concerning Israel's security fence. The League said the decision, which weighs heavily against Israel in favor of the Palestinian point of view, "shows that the proceeding was little more than a kangaroo court, where Israel never stood a chance to defend itself."
Barbara B. Balser, ADL National Chair, and Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director, issued the following statement:
We were shocked by this highly political and one-sided decision. The International Court of Justice (ICJ) too easily dismissed the arguments of Israel, along with those of 22 other nations who submitted written briefs, while completely accepting without any reservation the arguments of the Palestinians and their supporters.
While we expected the decision to come down against Israel, we did not expect the court to so vociferously condemn Israel's security fence while dismissing all of Israel's arguments. Rather than giving both sides an opportunity to make their case, the decision shows that the proceeding was little more than a kangaroo court where Israel never stood a chance to defend itself on the need for a security fence to protect its people from terrorism. This opinion also challenges the ability of Israel's allies to defend themselves in the global war against terrorism.
The ICJ's non-binding opinion dismisses Israel's basic right to protect its people from terrorism. There has been a dramatic decrease in Palestinian terrorism as a result of the security barrier, which has impeded terrorists from reaching Israeli cities and led to the capture of numerous would-be suicide bombers. The government of Israel has repeatedly stated that the security fence is temporary and reversible -- a response to Palestinian terrorism and not a land grab. The recent decision by Israel's Supreme Court reaffirms this. The court's decision ignores all of these arguments and plays into the hands of Israel's enemies, who have repeatedly sought to politicize international forums to attack Israel. We had hoped that the ICJ would hold itself to a higher standard.
This is a serious misuse of the ICJ that undermines the integrity of the court and the integrity of international law. Any lasting settlement can only come out of negotiations between the parties. The ICJ would have the United Nations impose a solution on the parties. The international community has a meaningful and constructive role to play in urging Palestinians to seek peace through negotiations and abandon their assault on Israel through seeking international sanctions and attacking its right to security.
The Anti-Defamation League, founded in 1913, is the world's leading organization fighting anti-Semitism through programs and services that counteract hatred, prejudice and bigotry.