Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Vile Belgium, weak on terror, strong on arresting Israelis - Giulio Meotti

by Giulio Meotti

Hat tip: Dr. Jean-Charles Bensoussan

ISIS can plan plots with impunity, just don't let Netanyahu in the door.

Last July, it was the turn of the Brits. Former Israeli Minister of Foreign Affairs, Tzipi Livni, was in London to attend a conference organized by Haaretz and the British government was forced to grant her diplomatic immunity to prevent the police and the judges from dragging her into court to face charges of “war crimes”.

Now Livni had to cancel a trip to Brussels because of a similar threat by the Belgian authorities. The Belgian daily Le Soir reports that prosecutors were ready to have the court convened for Livni so as to accuse her of crimes committed during Israel’s war in Gaza, when she was foreign minister. “We wanted to advance the investigation”, said a spokesman for the federal Belgian prosecutor Thierry Werts.

Today there are countries in Europe an Israeli official should avoid if unprotected by diplomatic immunity. Legal experts in Israel recommended ministers with a background in security and senior army officers not to visit Great Britain, Spain, Belgium and Norway. A year ago, a judge in Spain issued a arrest warrant for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and seven other former and current Israeli officials for the raid on the Flotilla. A senior judge of the Audiencia Nacional, José de la Mata, ordered the civil guard to “stop” Netanyahu and six other former ministers if they entered Spanish territory.

The judge Fernando Andreu also wanted to arrest the former Minister of Defense, Benjamin Ben-Eliezer, for having organized the bombing in Gaza that led to the death of Hamas’ military leader Salah Shehadeh and, inadvertently, several civilians. General Doron Almog should have landed in London when the embassy made him aware of a warrant for “violations of the Geneva Convention”. Almog returned to Tel Aviv.

For the former minister of Defense, Moshe Yaalon, it is also risky to go to Britain, like it is for another minister, Ehud Barak. The current spokesman for the defense committee of the Israeli parliament, Avi Dichter, had to give up a conference in Britain about the peace process in order not to be arrested, while the Israeli general Aviv Kokhavi canceled a conference at a British military academy.

Israeli officers are hunted in Europe due to zealous magistrates, non-governmental organizations which offer pro bono assistance, pro-Palestinian associations working full time and the cowardice of so many European governments. Last November, Tzipi Livni took part in the conference I organized in Rome entitled “Israel, Europe’s border”.

But for many representatives of the Israeli government, too many European states are becoming a frontier. A real one.

Giulio Meotti, an Italian journalist with Il Foglio, writes a twice-weekly column for Arutz Sheva. He is the author of the book "A New Shoah", that researched the personal stories of Israel's terror victims, published by Encounter and of "J'Accuse: the Vatican Against Israel" published by Mantua Books.. His writing has appeared in publications, such as the Wall Street Journal, Frontpage and Commentary.


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