SOUTH AFRICA - Accuses Israel of Genocide

Arno Froese

While nothing is surprising in the international realities in which we live, it is nevertheless ironic that the International Court of Justice in the Hague, the world’s principal judicial organ, is being petitioned by South Africa, at the evident behest and initiative of the Palestinian leadership, to adjudge the State of Israel for the alleged crime of genocide against the Palestinian people of Gaza.

The irony emanates first and foremost from the nature and history of the very term “genocide”—a term coined in 1944 by a Jewish lawyer, Raphael Lemkin, to describe the Nazi atrocities against the Jews during the Holocaust in Europe. 

The irony is all the more intense when one considers that the present armed conflict between Israel and Hamas broke out as a result of a repeated and declared intention, as well as a distinct series of actions by Hamas, to annihilate not only Israel and its population, but to direct its murderous designs against Jews wherever they are. 

The terms of Hamas’s own national covenant of 1988 amplify this intention by gleefully calling “to raise the banner of Allah over every inch of Palestine” and “to liberate Palestine and confront the Zionist project.” 

If this is not an intention to commit genocide, then one may ask what it is?

Such calls for genocide against Israel and the Jews unabashedly and gleefully echo the aims of the Palestinian and Hamas charters. 

Clearly, rather than harboring a 75-year-old genocidal intention, Israel has, throughout its short history, consistently sought to achieve peaceful coexistence and bon voisinage with its neighbors, including the Palestinians.

This is borne out by the many agreements reached, including the 1978 Camp David Accords and the 1991-1993 Madrid process that led to the 1995 Oslo Accords., 10 January 2024

Arno's Commentary

South Africa’s application to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) based on the Genocide Convention is “utter nonsense.” Realizing that Israel is militarily the superior power in the Middle East, it is not only ironic but also childish to assume that Israel violates the Convention. In plain words, to annihilate the population of Gaza is within Israel’s capability. So, the question: why have so many Israeli soldiers (at time of writing, 187) been killed in Gaza? Israel’s military is carefully instructed to avoid civilian casualties. In many if not all cases, buildings to be targeted were identified and residents warned of impending destruction. Many did flee; quite obviously, the terrorists stayed behind, hiding primarily in tunnels. When Israeli soldiers approached, they were easy targets.

This also goes for the so-called apartheid, a term coined in South Africa. Here are the facts: 2,080,000 Palestinian-Arabs are Israeli citizens, with all the rights and privileges that entails. Next question: do persons who qualify for citizenship need to give an oath of allegiance to Israel? The answer is a resounding no. Can Palestinian-Arab Israeli citizens vote? Yes: public participation in voting is higher among Palestinian-Arab Israelis than Jewish Israelis. 

In summary, South Africa should know better. They are the modern creators and practitioners of apartheid and genocide. We must add, the new countries in the Americas (North and South), as well as Australia, were established on the practice of genocide (“A good Indian is a dead Indian.”) and apartheid (Native Americans forced onto reservations). Today, this has mostly changed to a form of democracy. For governments to integrate various groups of people in society is difficult, but steadily progressing.

How does all this relate to the Church? The Bible declares: “That at that time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world” (Ephesians 2:12). But now: “Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God” (verse 19).

Arno Froese is the executive director of Midnight Call Ministries and editor-in-chief of the acclaimed prophetic magazines Midnight Call and News From Israel. He has authored a number of well-received books, and has sponsored many prophecy conferences in the U.S., Canada, and Israel. His extensive travels have contributed to his keen insight into Bible prophecy, as he sees it from an international perspective.

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