yair naveh 311.
(photo credit: Courtesy)
The High Court on Thursday
rejected the petition that was filed against Maj.-Gen. Yair
Naveh's temporary appointment to be the IDF chief of General Staff. The
decision, made by a panel of three judges, stated that "we didn't find
any condition which would justify canceling the general's nomination."
The petitioners – including NGOs Yesh Gvul and Gush Shalom, and
left-wing former MKs Shulamit Aloni and Moshe “Mossi” Raz – maintained
that while he was head of the IDF’s Central Command in 2006, Naveh
committed war crimes by authorizing targeted killings of Palestinian
terrorists, in violation of a court ruling. The information about
Naveh's alleged crimes were leaked last year to Haaretz by Anat Kam, who
had served in Naveh's office.
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Judge Edna Arbel, who wrote the
official ruling, said that the High Court could not draw from the
existent law a sweeping rule on targeted killings. She also noted that
the attorney-general, who was requested to look over the case after the
issue was raised, determined that the army did not act in opposition to
the law and that therefore there is no point to open a criminal
investigation on the matter.
As for whether or not the court
felt that Naveh would be appropriate for the role of temporary IDF chief
of staff itself, Judge Edna Arbel said she did not feel that Naveh was
fit for the job. The High Court judges criticized Naveh's past
off-handed remarks to the High Court when he was quoted as responding
"Who cares about High Court judges?" to reporters.
Jourban had said that Naveh's past actions "may encourage disregard for
court orders, and could harm the public's trust in the court system."
On Tuesday, Naveh had submitted a letter to the Military Advocate-General explaining the remarks he had made to Blau.
was quoted as saying things, which I don’t deny saying, but which were
presented in the article in a way that could be understood as my
disregarding the High Court in general and its ruling on the legality of
targeted killings in particular,” wrote Naveh. He added “Such a reading
of the words is wrong and upsetting in my eyes; it twists my meaning
and takes things out of context.”
The High Court concluded that
decision of whether to appoint Naveh or not was ultimately not up to
them. "The choice to make a temporary appointment, which looks as though
it will pass in the Knesset, is not resting on us and we are not needed
for it, but we do not see any basis for distinguishing between the
competence of those elected to serve as deputy chief of staff, chief of
staff, or temporary chief of staff."