Palestinian footballers shot by Israeli forces never to play again
From Maan news:
BETHLEHEM - Two young Palestinian football players shot by Israeli forces last month have learned that they will never be able to play sports again due to their injuries, according to doctors.
Jawhar Nasser Jawhar, 19, and Adam Abd al-Raouf Halabiya, 17, were shot by Israeli soldiers as they were walking home from a training session in the Faisal al-Husseini Stadium in al-Ram in the central West Bank on Jan. 31. Israeli forces opened fire in their direction without warning as they were walking near a checkpoint.
Police dogs were subsequently unleashed on them before Israeli soldiers dragged them across the ground and beat them. The pair was subsequently were taken to an Israeli hospital in Jerusalem, where they underwent a number of operations to remove the bullets. Medical reports said that Jawhar was shot with 11 bullets, seven in his left foot, three in his right, and one in his left hand. Halabiya was shot once in each foot.
The two were taken to Ramallah governmental hospital before being transferred to King Hussein Medical Center in Amman.
Chairman of the Palestinian Football Association Jibril al-Rajoub condemned the shooting and said that "Israeli brutality against them emphasizes the occupation's insistence on destroying Palestinian sport." Rajoub called for imposing penalties on the Israeli football association, and demanded its removal from the FIFA as it should not accept racist organizations that do not adhere to international law.
Interestingly, Ma'an News and the International Middle East Media Center are among the few "major" news sources covering this story:
So where are The New York Times, CNN, CBS or any of the other news giants owned by Viacom or Time Warner? Well, Viacom and Time Warner are in Jewish hands (see: 1, 2), so it must be taken into consideration whether their reports and leaders have a pro-Israel bias which affects what we hear.
An even greater concern, however, is that the permanently maimed footballers are not likely to see legal justice. To begin, the International Criminal Court (ICC) will not grant a hearing since the shooting was not an act as gruesome as, for example, mass genocide, which would warrant a trial at this level. That leaves the door open for the Israeli military to prosecute its own soldiers for firing on the footballers. Realistically, however, the Israeli soldiers who shot the footballers would probably claim before the Israeli court that they were following protocol-based orders when they acted, which limits their liability for the shooting and the shooting's consequences. Furthermore, it is doubtful that Israeli military judges, sympathetic to the Israeli national cause, would even be interested in hearing the case and obtaining justice for the Palestinian footballers, since it would be at Israel's expense. It would be bad publicity for Israel all the same.
That leaves the footballers hoping that the International Court of Justice (ICJ) will hear the case, since the ICJ deals with pleas against states and state military units. Indeed, under international law, a state is responsible for the conduct of its military forces (Article 4 of ILC Articles on State Responsibility) regardless whether those forces were or were not acting on state instructions. However, Israel cannot be brought to court by Palestine under the current rules of law, as only states can file suit against states at the ICJ and "Palestine" is not a state. In short, there is a legal loophole. The door is open for another state to take legal action against Israel on behalf of Palestine (as per ILC State Responsibility Article 48) and, undoubtedly, things would move pretty quickly on the ground if a major power like the US got involved. Still, it is highly unlikely that the US will request legal action against Israel - the US did not even go after Israel when US citizens perished following Israel's controversial attack against the USS Liberty.
Adding to the unlikelihood of legal recourse from the US, the current US government is dominated by Jews who are pro-Israel, as well as others who have had their political careers financed by the pro-Israel lobby called AIPAC. Observing America's past behavior, as well as the loyalties of America's current political elite, it's hard to see why Israel should anticipate legal retaliation led by the US. Only time will tell if another power steps up to seek justice for the permanently maimed Palestinian footballers.