Update on Lawfare from The Lawfare Project

New article by LP Research Director Aaron Eitan Meyer: “Qaddafi Arrest Warrants Issued – Who’s Unhappy?”

UN Special Rapporteur Richard Falk has been the subject of considerable condemnation after posting a flagrantly anti-Semitic cartoon along with a blog entry questioning the recent issuance of arrest warrants by the International Criminal Court. The blog entry had previously been published as an article on AlJazeera.net, and LP Research Director Aaron Eitan Meyer explained in Big Peace how the substance of Falk’s article is itself completely inaccurate and misrepresents the situation, including Falk’s misapplication of the term lawfare. The article is available here.

New LP Blog: “‘Victory for freedom of speech’: Geert Wilders acquitted of hate speech by Dutch court”

The Lawfare Project’s latest blog entry discusses the recent acquittal of Dutch politician Geert Wilders, who was found not guilty of hate speech and discrimination against Muslims after a three-year prosecution. The entry, written by Lawfare Project associate Benjamin Ryberg, explains why the holding is a triumph against lawfare aimed at chilling free speech, and then examines both the OIC’s (Organisation of Islamic Cooperation) statement regarding the holding and Wilders’s response to the OIC. The entry is available on The Lawfare Project’s website here.

Lawfare News

The following recent articles will serve to illustrate how lawfare is continuing to manifest around the world.

Please note that third-party articles do not necessarily reflect the views of The Lawfare Project, and the inclusion of article summaries does not necessarily constitute endorsement of any views taken therein.

a. Lawfare implications of Unilateral Palestinian action

Although lawfare is by no means limited to the sphere of the Arab-Israeli Conflict, it does consistently manifest in that context, to the point where some incorrectly define lawfare narrowly within the Arab-Israeli paradigm. In light of a proposed initiative to unilaterally attain Palestinian statehood, R. Gavinson, Y. Zilbershats and N. Gore review the potential legal foundations of the Palestinian claims for the right of return and conclude that it has never had and does not have any basis in international law, in an article in The Jerusalem Post. An article by Pinhas Inbari from the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs entitled “What are the Palestinians Planning after September?” analyzes other legal actions Palestinians hope to take after their September initiative, including subsequent utilization of their state status to prosecute Israel in international tribunals.

The Jerusalem Post article is available in its entirety here, and the JCPA article is available in its entirety here.

b. Iran Attempting Lawfare against the US

In a perfect example of how lawfare tactics developed against Israel may be subsequently employed against officials of other governments, CNN.com reports that Iranian officials announced plans to prosecute twenty-six high-ranking American officials within the Department of Defense who oversaw US military actions in Iraq and Afghanistan. In form, the Iranian plan follows prior use of European courts to file ‘war crimes’ charges against Israeli and American officials. However, unlike charges brought in Europe, any decisions reached by Iranian courts are highly unlikely to have any substantial effect elsewhere, or to be recognized as legitimate. The article is available in its entirety here.

Benjamin Ryberg