web analytics
November 26, 2014 / 4 Kislev, 5775
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post
IDC Herzliya Campus A Day on Campus

To mark IDC Herzliya’s 20th anniversary, we spent a day following Prof. Uriel Reichman, IDC’s founder and president, and Jonathan Davis, VP for External Relations, around its delightful campus.



On The Difference Between Murderers And Freedom Fighters


Beres-Louis-Rene

Moments after the latest bus bombing in Jerusalem this morning (January 29th), the group claiming responsibility, the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigade, identified its action as an expression of “freedom fighting.” Plainly, however, there is NO cause on the face of this bleeding planet that can ever warrant the deliberate mutilation and murder of defenseless civilians riding on a municipal bus. Those who can find cause for celebration amidst the mangled and burned bodies of young children must always be called by their correct name. By any reasonable standard of civilized human behavior these celebrants support a uniquely unheroic form of slaughterer, a contemptible dreamer who discovers sheer ecstasy only in massacre and who sees in unrestrained terrorism a gloriously sacrificial form of religious worship.

What is plainly evident to reasonable human beings is also an incontestable part of current international law. Supporters of Palestinian violence against Israeli citizens frequently claim that the insurgent force is directed against an “occupation, ” and therefore warrants “any means
necessary.” From the standpoint of authoritative international rules of behavior, this claim is entirely incorrect. Even where the use of insurgent force may be justified – and in the case of the Palestinians such justification is hotly debatable – deliberate attacks upon noncombatants are always illegal. Indeed, there is no more ancient and sacred principle of law than the immutable imperative to protect the innocent.

“One man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter.” There is NO basis in law for this especially facile and shallow expression. The issue here is not one of subjective interpretation. On the contrary, there do exist precise and settled criteria that are readily available to distinguish the terrorist from the freedom fighter. According to international law, any insurgent who intentionally causes the explosive incineration of men, women and children at lunch or at prayer or at a wedding ceremony or on a bus is a TERRORIST! Period!

It is true that certain insurgencies can be judged lawful. Yet, even these insurgencies MUST always conform to the laws of war. The ends can never justify the means in international law. Never. Where the insurgent group resorts to unjust means, as in the case of exploding a public bus, its actions are unambiguously terroristic.

How shall we know precisely when insurgent means are just or unjust? The determinable standards that must be applied in judgment are known in law as Just Cause and Just Means. These standards, and these standards alone, allow us to differentiate lawful insurgency from terrorism.

National liberation movements that fail to meet the test of Just Means are NOT protected as lawful or legitimate. Leaving aside the very doubtful argument that Palestinian organizations meet the standards of “national liberation,” especially after the prior Barak Government offered the PA/PLO control of over 97% of West Bank (Judea/Samaria) and Gaza, it is assuredly clear that they do not meet the standards of discrimination, proportionality and military necessity. These formal standards, applicable under the Laws of War, have been applied to insurgent organizations by the common Article 3 of the four Geneva Conventions of 1949 and by the two protocols to these Conventions of 1977. They are binding upon ALL combatants by virtue of both customary and conventional international law.

The ends CAN NEVER justify the means. As in the case of war between states, every use of force by insurgents must be judged twice, once with regard to the justness of the objective (in this case, the avowed objective is a Palestinian state built upon the charred ruins of a dismembered Israel) and once with regard to the justness of the means used in pursuit of that objective. A Palestinian organization that deliberately targets indiscriminately with intent to maximize pain and suffering can never claim to be “freedom fighters.”

American and European supporters of a Palestinian State presume that it will be part of a “two-state solution,” that is, that the new Arab state will exist side-by-side with the existing Jewish State. Yet, this presumption is dismissed everywhere in the Arab/Islamic world. Indeed, the “Map of Palestine” at the official website of the Palestinian National Authority includes all of Israel. There are NOT two states on this map; only one. Palestinian insurgents who resort to terrorism against Israel will never acknowledge that a Jewish State has any right to endure. Why should this should be so difficult to understand today, when even the most “moderate” Palestinians themselves have been so cartographically honest on their own website?

Terrorist crimes, as part of a broader category called CRIMEN CONTRA OMNES (crimes against all), mandate universal cooperation in apprehension and punishment. In this connection, as punishers of “grave breaches” under international law, all states are expected to search out
and prosecute, or extradite, individual terrorist perpetrators. In NO circumstances are any states permitted to characterize terrorists as “freedom fighters.” This is especially the case for the United States, which incorporates all international law as the “supreme law of the land” at Article 6 of the Constitution, and which was formed by the Founding Fathers according to the timeless principles of Natural Law.

Palestinian terrorists are NOT “freedom fighters.” They are “Common Enemies of Mankind” who exceed all moral and legal authority in their persistently barbarous attacks upon Israeli citizens. They should always be called by their correct name.

 

2004 The Jewish Press. All Rights Reserved

LOUIS RENE BERES was educated at Princeton (Ph.D., 1971) and is the author of many books and articles dealing with terrorism and international law.

About the Author: Louis René Beres (Ph.D., Princeton, 1971) is professor of political science and international law at Purdue University and the author of many books and articles dealing with international relations and strategic studies.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “On The Difference Between Murderers And Freedom Fighters”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Ferguson, Missouri: rioting against racism, encouraging murder
The Foul Stench of the Ferguson Fallout
Latest Indepth Stories
Rabbi Maurice Lamm

Creativity without clarity is not sufficient for writing. I am eternally thankful to Hashem for his gift to me.

Golden presents a compelling saga of poor but determined immigrants who fled pogroms and harsh conditions in their homelands for a better life in a land of opportunity.

It seems to us that while the Jewish entitlement to the land of Israel transcends the Holocaust, the Jewish experience during that tragic time is the most solid of foundations for these “national rights.”

Too many self-styled civil rights activists seemed determined to force, by their relentless pressure, an indictment regardless of what an investigation might turn up.

Egypt’s al-Sisi is in an expansionist mood. He wants Israel’s permission to take over Judea and Samaria.

Cries of justice for Michael Brown drowned out any call for justice for Police Officer Daryl Wilson.

Cloistered captain Obama, touts his talents and has the temerity to taunt Bibi,his besieged ally

Former PM Ariel Sharon succinctly said, “the fate of Netzarim (Gush Katif) is the fate of Tel-Aviv.”

“What’s a line between friends?”

Unrest in YESHA and J’m helps Abbas and Abdullah defuse anger, gain politically and appear moderates

A “Shliach” means to do acts with complete devotion and dedication in order to help bring Moshiach.

The pogroms in Chevron took place eighty five years ago, in 1929; the Holocaust began seventy-five years ago in 1939; the joint attack of Israel’s neighbors against the Jewish State of Israel happened sixty-six years ago… yet, world history of anti-Semitism did not stop there, but continues until today. Yes, the primitive reality of Jews […]

“We don’t just care for the children; we make sure they have the best quality of life.”

“Why do people get complacent with the things they’re told?”

More Articles from Louis Rene Beres

A “Palestine” could become another Lebanon, with many different factions battling for control.

Louis Rene Beres

President Obama’s core argument on a Middle East peace process is still founded on incorrect assumptions.

Once upon a time in America, every adult could recite at least some Spenglerian theory of decline.

President Obama’s core argument is still founded on incorrect assumptions.

Specific strategic lessons from the Bar Kokhba rebellion.

Still facing an effectively unhindered nuclear threat from Iran, Israel will soon need to choose between two strategic options.

For states, as for individuals, fear and reality go together naturally.

So much of the struggle between Israel and the Arabs continues to concern space.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/columns/louis-bene-beres/on-the-difference-between-murderers-and-freedom-fighters/2004/03/03/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: