OpinionIsrael at War

I accuse

France must condemn South Africa’s political war on Israel.

The South African delegation presents its case against Israel at the International Court of Justice in The Hague, Jan. 11, 2024. Source: X.
The South African delegation presents its case against Israel at the International Court of Justice in The Hague, Jan. 11, 2024. Source: X.
Manuel Valls. Credit: Courtesy.
Manuel Valls
Manuel Valls is the former prime minister of France.

The crowd goes wild. Palestinian keffiyehs hang from the necks of the overwhelming majority of men present, as songs are sung and Palestinian flags dance above their heads. They are galvanized by hopes for a strange victory.

A few meters away, the atmosphere is one of mourning. Israeli flags slowly come to life as their bearers walk wearily. Their faces are sad. Many have brought a photo of a hostage. It’s been a time of grief since Oct. 7.

The day before, radical left French politician Jean-Luc Mélenchon congratulated himself on being invited to the event. In what role, one wonders. He declared that he would be “present for peace” in the camp celebrating what for some is the trial of the century. It’s a “choice,” he said, “that rejects the law of the strongest, the most armed or the injunctions of murderous theories such as the ‘clash of civilizations’ or the ‘war of good against evil.’” A political choice, in short.

Between the walls facing the demonstrators is the International Court of Justice, where South Africa has charged Israel with the genocide of Palestinians in Gaza. This “genocide,” it is claimed, is part of a “nakba for 75 years.” It is a grotesque initiative by the corruption-ridden African National Congress government, which is seeking to divert attention from the country’s 30% unemployment rate, as well as the 30,000 murders and 40,000 rapes that occur each year.

If political indecency has raged around the world in recent months, it has finally reached its culmination in the principal judicial body of the United Nations. The trial of the century, they say. I prefer to call it the Dreyfus affair of our time.

So, 126 years after Dreyfus, it’s my turn to tell the whole truth.

First, the truth about the trial and the spurious accusations made against Israel:

South Africa’s plea was appalling. Built around videos found on social networks and shocking statements from the press and the internet, the lawyers hammered home a single message: The sole aim of Israel’s war against Hamas is to destroy the “subgroup” of Palestinians in Gaza.

This is no doubt appealing to anti-Zionists who fantasize about Israel as the great tyrant of the Middle East. But what about the 1,200 people Hamas murdered out of the most savage hatred? What about the Israelis and others who were dismembered, raped, beheaded and burned?

What about the more than 7,500 wounded and the 139 hostages, including 19 bodies, taken during the massacre on Oct. 7? Not to mention the 110 freed hostages who have been traumatized for life?

What about the 500,000 people displaced within Israel’s borders? What about the constant barrage of rockets fired by Hamas? What about common sense and self-defense?

The myth of an Israel thirsty for Palestinian blood, a myth fueled by South Africa’s libels, is a shameless lie. Clearly, to the accusers, it would be a disgrace to recall the considerable efforts by Israel to protect civilians from this war, despite Hamas’ efforts to use those civilians as human shields. They would consider it a dishonor to admit that, if Israel really wanted the Palestinians in Gaza to disappear, treating Gazan children and terrorists in Israeli hospitals, as Israel does, would be counterproductive. It would be unthinkable to them to point out that a supposedly genocidal state would probably not invite tens of thousands of Palestinians to work in Israel. And in the face of all this, they persist in condemning Israel for alleged genocidal acts.

Now, the truth about a political class driven by anti-Jewish hatred and an insatiable thirst for electoral victory:

For part of the European and international political class, nothing of all the abominations committed by Hamas have been enough. Jean-Luc Mélenchon and notorious British antisemite Jeremy Corbyn take the lead in this indifference. These politicians were invited to the ICJ hearing, though their role was unclear. What is not in doubt is that they refuse to consider Hamas a terrorist movement; another indignity to add to the long list of infamous antisemitic and hateful remarks made by these two former elected representatives.

This is a disaster for the French and British left, who can no longer enjoy the prestige of defending humanist and universal values. Their Manichean vision of power and the role of minorities deprives them of all lucidity. Instead, they find legitimacy in barbarism, making themselves complicit in crimes that should offend their deepest convictions, if any such convictions remain. This nauseating faction has agreed to sell its weak convictions for the benefit of the supposed new proletariat they have set out to conquer: The great mass of immigrants and Muslims. To hell with defending the working classes, apparently. They are no longer good enough victims to be attractive.

And the truth at last about this “war of good against evil”:

“Martyrdom is undoubtedly the greatest secret of our success. Your adversary is [always] trying to kill you, but if you don’t mind losing your life, [if] what counts is achieving your goal, he loses all hold over you.” These are the necrophilous words of Naïm Qassem, Hezbollah’s number two, revealed in a documentary on France 2.

His words crystallize this war, which is not a war of good against evil, but a war of values. From Hamas to Hezbollah, from ISIS to all contemporary Islamist terrorist groups, the aim is the same: to wage jihad against the West and ultimately annihilate it. For Hamas, Hezbollah and the Houthis, supported by Iran, the goal is to put an end to the “Zionist entity,” which they call the “Little Satan,” and then above all the “Great Satan” of the United States.

The barbarity and inhumanity of the Oct. 7 atrocities taught us all a lesson about the enemies—the Islamists, the terrorists—that the Israelis have to fight. Our enemies in France and Europe were and are no different.

For the reasons set out above, I accuse the Hamas terrorists of genocidal acts against the Palestinian population in Gaza, specifically by murdering and torturing homosexuals and political opponents; damaging the physical and mental integrity of Gazans by using them as human shields; using schools, universities, hospitals and ambulances for terrorist purposes; intentionally subjecting Gazans to destructive living conditions by diverting international aid to finance terrorism; and hindering births by depriving Gaza’s women of quality care in hospitals widely used as weapons warehouses.

I accuse Hamas of incessant attacks aimed at threatening Israeli territorial security and of war crimes and hostage-taking, which led Israel to launch a military response in self-defense.

I accuse Hamas of being solely responsible for the tragic situation in Gaza and for the war waged there by Israel.

I accuse Hamas, Hezbollah, the Houthis and Iran of genocidal rhetoric against the Jewish community, Israel and the United States.

I accuse South Africa and its supporters of carrying the voice of Hamas and their propaganda to the highest authorities in the world.

I accuse them of guilty silence when Syria, Afghanistan, Yemen, Sudan, Iraq and Iran should have been condemned for genocide against their populations and war crimes.

I accuse them of failing in their duty to prevent and punish genocidal statements made directly and publicly against Israel.

I accuse them of ignoring the massacres of Oct. 7, which they do not take into consideration when judging Israel’s response.

I accuse them of bringing an unfounded and politically motivated complaint to the ICJ that essentially rejects Israel’s right to exist.

I accuse Jean-Luc Mélenchon and Jeremy Corbyn of acting as political representatives of anti-Zionism by refusing to recognize Hamas as a terrorist organization and by justifying its atrocities.

I accuse the U.N. of lacking impartiality towards Israel, which was the target of 17 resolutions in 2020, compared with seven for the rest of the world (including only one against Iran and one against Syria).

I accuse the U.N. of incomprehensible blindness until Jan. 8, when it finally condemned the rapes and sexual mutilations committed on Oct. 7. I accuse the U.N. of a lack of objectivity in the face of information provided by Hamas concerning the deaths attributed to Israel. The pitiful echo given by the U.N. to Hamas’s false claims about the Al-Ahli Hospital explosion should have been a wake-up call.

I accuse UNRWA of complicity with Hamas terrorists to the detriment of Gaza’s civilian population.

I strongly condemn the misappropriation of European and international funds by Hamas for the financing of antisemitic schoolbooks, weapons and war infrastructure, and foodstuffs appropriated by the terrorist group.

More than 100 days after the 21st century’s worst pogrom and attempted genocide, I condemn the outrageous demand that Israel answer charges of genocidal acts and lend my support to Israeli democracy in this unbearable political war.

I join the Israelis who mourn their dead and share their terror at the knowledge that, at a time when Israel is on trial for genocide, over 100 Israelis and others are still being held hostage by terrorist groups in the Gaza Strip, suffering the abuses we know these groups are willing to inflict.

I expect France to make the same commitment to the Israelis as Germany has done and unequivocally condemn South Africa’s libelous charges.

The opinions and facts presented in this article are those of the author, and neither JNS nor its partners assume any responsibility for them.
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