Occupied Thoughts: Israel/Palestine & the ICC — Sawsan Zaher with Peter Beinart
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In this new episode of Occupied Thoughts, Peter Beinart interviews Sawsan Zaher, Deputy Director of Adalah: The Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel, about the recent decision by the International Criminal Court that opens the door for investigations into alleged war crimes perpetrated by “members of the Israeli Defense Forces, Israeli authorities, Hamas, and Palestinian armed groups.” Zaher, who has litigated multiple landmark cases before the Israeli Supreme Court on discrimination against Palestinians, offers a primer on Israel/Palestine and the ICC — what the new decision means, who might face investigation and potential prosecution (with special attention to Benny Gantz and Gaza), and how the different states & leadership – including Israel, the Palestinian Authority, the U.S., and others – are responding and why.
Adalah, where Zaher serves as Deputy Director, published a 2020 report in which they conclude that “the ICC must defend victims – particularly in Gaza – who have been left by Israel in a legal ‘black hole’ with no domestic legal recourse or remedy, civil or criminal.” You can read the whole report here.
Sawsan Zaher is a Palestinian feminist and human rights lawyer, based in Haifa, Israel. She is the Deputy General Director and senior litigator at Adalah, the Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel. She has litigated several landmark cases before the Israeli Supreme Court challenging discriminatory laws and policies against Palestinians including the recent Jewish Nation State Basic Law. She was selected as a Young Global Leader (2015); a Yale World Fellow (2013); a fellow at the Women in Public Service Project at Wellesley College, M.A., (2012); and a Fellow of the Public Law Program in the Public Interest Law Institute in Colombia University, NYC (2008).
Peter Beinart is a Non-Resident Fellow at the Foundation for Middle East Peace. He is also a Professor of Journalism and Political Science at the City University of New York, a Contributing opinion writer at the New York Times, an Editor-at-Large at Jewish Currents, and a CNN Political Commentator. He tweets at @PeterBeinart.