Netanyahu Vows Annihilation Of Hamas

( – Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu won’t accept indictments from the International Criminal Court (ICC) related to the war in Gaza. He also repeated his intention to eliminate Hamas. Netanyahu was giving comments after a speech celebrating the Jewish holiday of Passover on April 30.

Netanyahu called the suggestion that Israeli officials could be charged with war crimes “an outrage” while maintaining the narrative that the Israeli war in Gaza is defensive in nature. Netanyahu suggested that indicting Israeli officials would “pour jet fuel on the fires of antisemitism.” He highlighted that antisemitic sentiments have cropped up at protests around campuses across the western world.

Netanyahu claimed the Israeli military was “one of the most moral” fighting forces in the world. He said that they take “endless measures” to protect civilians, and suggested other militaries don’t go nearly as far to do so during their military campaigns. He reminded viewers that Hamas hides behind civilians, using hospitals, schools, and mosques as weapons depots or hideouts.

Netanyahu focused on the fact that Hamas has taken and continues to hold hostages, which is a violation of the rules of war, and found it confusing that the ICC would prosecute Israel first while ignoring Hamas’ violations.

Netanyahu claimed that prosecution of Israel would open all democracies around the world to prosecution for acts that its leaders would consider defensive in nature. He also said that the ICC doesn’t hold jurisdiction over Israel which has its own sovereign judicial system.

The Biden administration opposes the ICC prosecution of Israel for much the same reason: there’s concern that a precedent could be set that would eventually allow prosecution of U.S. soldiers or military personnel.

Netanyahu also announced his intention to send the Israeli military into Rafah, regardless of whether or not they have a deal for the hostages. The current deal on the table would see around a thousand Palestinian prisoners released in exchange for an unspecified number of hostages.

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