Proposed Israeli Law to Imprison 12-Year-Olds
by Stephen Lendman
Introduced by Arab-hating justice minister Ayelet ("little snakes") Shaked, it's intended solely for Palestinian children. Israeli courts wouldn't tolerate sending young Jewish ones to prison.
Palestinians are systematically abused. Guilt is automatic when charged, children treated like adults. Current Israeli law prohibits imprisoning children under age 14.
Shaked wants the threshold lowered to 12 if convicted of "nationalistic-motivated" violent acts, prosecutors able to use this charge against any Palestinian they want imprisoned for any reason.
Innocence is no defense. Israel calls legitimate Palestinian resistance against state-sponsored ruthlessness "terrorism" or "incitement to violence."
Shaked's spokesman said "terrorism does not have an age, and today there are no punishments matching the cruel reality we face."
"In order to produce a deterrent and to change the reality we must make some required changes. (The measure) gives minors the special protection they need, while giving a serious response to terrorists who think that the courts and justice will not reach them."
The Knesset's Ministerial Committee for Legislation approved the bill. Plenary session debate will follow. Racist fascists dominating Israel's parliament assure near certain passage, possibly in amended form.
The proposed measure affects Palestinian children in Occupied East Jerusalem, as well as others living elsewhere in the country.
Israeli military courts already try and imprison Occupied Palestinians young as 12. Racist Likud MK Anat Berko unjustifiably claimed Palestinian adults "recruit minors while knowing that Israeli law does not have a real response."
Defense for Children International-Palestine (DCIP) attorney Brad Parker said the proposed measure "is an apparent response to criminal attacks that have allegedly been carried out by young Palestinians and is a clear attempt to criminalize and punish the alleged attackers" most often without just cause.
The bill "prioritize(s) the criminalization and punishment of children in complete disregard for international law."
"As violence has escalated in the past few months, we see policies and practices that contravene international law being codified by the Israeli government."
Most Palestinian children arrested face abusive interrogations amounting to torture. They're forced to sign confessions in Hebrew they don't understand, most often for crimes they didn't commit, most other times for offenses too minor to matter.
Repressive Israeli legislation already authorizes imprisoning Israeli children for stone-throwing, true or false, a measure Shaked introduced.
Palestinians are collectively punished by a ruthless occupier, terrorized for wanting fundamental freedoms they're denied, children treated as harshly as adults.
Hundreds are imprisoned, brutally treated under gulag conditions, leaving many scarred for life, justifiably angry about Israel injustice.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at email@example.com.
His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."
Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com.
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