The Crisis at the International Criminal Court Proves the U.S. and Israel Right

In recent weeks, South Africa, Burundi, and Gambia have all announced their intention to leave the International Criminal Court (ICC). Kenya and Namibia are considering exiting as well, and other African nations may follow. Why? Mostly because they’re reluctant to extradite the Sudanese president Omar al-Bashir, indicted by the court for his role in the genocide in Darfur, should he visit their countries. This collapse of the court’s authority, writes Ariel Bolstein, justifies both America and Israel’s longstanding refusal to accept its jurisdiction:

Israel and the U.S . . . recognized early on that the [ICC] would be used by an array of shadowy regimes, eventually becoming a weapon for the worst of criminals. . . .

[A total of] 139 countries supported the establishment of the ICC, mostly as a means of bashing their opponents. Some saw it as the ideal playing field for hurling accusations against Israel. . . . Israel’s enemies fantasized about seeing Israeli leaders and soldiers led into the courtroom in handcuffs. This court has been asked to investigate Israel at least twice, and no objections were made in response. In case you were wondering, the court is not investigating the massacre in Syria. The court is not even capable of arresting Bashir al-Assad, whose hands are stained with the blood of millions. Bring a ruthless tyrant to justice? No. Blame Israel? Most definitely.

The ICC has fallen victim to the same plague that [has undermined] international initiatives like the UN and UNESCO. All of these . . . started off as the initiatives of pure idealists, and were instantly hijacked by those with dark ulterior motives. . . . Israel was wise not to follow in the way of fools and become a part of this process.

Read more at Israel Hayom

More about: Africa, ICC, International Law, Israel, Politics & Current Affairs, Sudan, U.S. Foreign policy

To Save Gaza, the U.S. Needs a Strategy to Restrain Iran

Since the outbreak of war on October 7, America has given Israel much support, and also much advice. Seth Cropsey argues that some of that advice hasn’t been especially good:

American demands for “restraint” and a “lighter footprint” provide significant elements of Hamas’s command structure, including Yahya Sinwar, the architect of 10/7, a far greater chance of surviving and preserving the organization’s capabilities. Its threat will persist to some extent in any case, since it has significant assets in Lebanon and is poised to enter into a full-fledged partnership with Hizballah that would give it access to Lebanon’s Palestinian refugee camps for recruitment and to Iranian-supported ratlines into Jordan and Syria.

Turning to the aftermath of the war, Cropsey observes that it will take a different kind of involvement for the U.S. to get the outcomes it desires, namely an alternative to Israeli and to Hamas rule in Gaza that comes with buy-in from its Arab allies:

The only way that Gaza can be governed in a sustainable and stable manner is through the participation of Arab states, and in particular the Gulf Arabs, and the only power that can deliver their participation is the United States. A grand bargain is impossible unless the U.S. exerts enough leverage to induce one.

Militarily speaking, the U.S. has shown no desire seriously to curb Iranian power. It has persistently signaled a desire to avoid escalation. . . . The Gulf Arabs understand this. They have no desire to engage in serious strategic dialogue with Washington and Jerusalem over Iran strategy, since Washington does not have an Iran strategy.

Gaza’s fate is a small part of a much broader strategic struggle. Unless this is recognized, any diplomatic master plan will degenerate into a diplomatic parlor game.

Read more at National Review

More about: Gaza War 2023, Iran, U.S. Foreign policy