Israel's overreach exposes its corrupt security system - opinion

One area that is of extreme danger to democratic systems is when politicians use their own executive branch to engineer the political ideas that they have.

Palestinian demonstrators take part in a protest in solidarity with Mohammad El Halabi, World Vision's manager of operations in Gaza who was accused by Israel of funnelling millions of dollars in aid money to Hamas, organised by foundations and societies benefiting from World Vision in Gaza City Aug (photo credit: REUTERS)
Palestinian demonstrators take part in a protest in solidarity with Mohammad El Halabi, World Vision's manager of operations in Gaza who was accused by Israel of funnelling millions of dollars in aid money to Hamas, organised by foundations and societies benefiting from World Vision in Gaza City Aug
(photo credit: REUTERS)

Modern democratic systems work very hard on separating the political echelons from those who carry out their policies. One area that is of extreme danger to democratic systems is when politicians use their own executive branch to engineer the political ideas that they have. Such action often brings short-term results but it erodes the very basic tenets of democratic rule and the separation of powers.

The latest unproven Israeli decision to accuse six well-known Palestinian organizations of being terrorist organizations has been questioned not because of its merits but because of the recurring cases in which the terrorism scarecrow is similar to that of the security one, and the antisemitic one is used to camouflage a partisan political goal regardless of the actual facts. 

A number of analysts and media outlets have revived the case of Mohammad El Halabi, who has been in jail for over five years on charges of diverting some $50 million in humanitarian aid to Palestinian militant organizations dubbed terrorist organizations by Israel. The Halabi story has become a showcase for the corruption in the Israeli security system, which has been hijacked by Israeli political groups to justify whatever policies are the flavor of the day.  

At the time of his arrest in 2016, the Netanyahu government was trying to pressure Hamas into surrender and wanted to weaken international humanitarian support to Gazans so that they could revolt against Hamas. Halabi, a respected director of one of the largest world charitable organizations, was arbitrarily arrested after a visit to the World Vision offices in Jerusalem and was pressured, tortured and held incommunicado for over 50 days. He made no confession because he had done nothing wrong, a fact that leading investigators and auditors paid for by the Australian government and World Vision have proven without a shadow of a doubt.  

While the absurdity of this case and the accusation stand to expose the Israeli system, a small side story has eluded scrutiny but is a perfect example of how the Israeli security system is being pressured to lie and cheat just to protect the politicians and to give the courts an image of independence. 

 Al-Haq director Shawan Jabarin and Sahar Francis, director of Addameer.  (credit: TOVAH LAZAROFF) Al-Haq director Shawan Jabarin and Sahar Francis, director of Addameer. (credit: TOVAH LAZAROFF)