Thursday, June 13, 2024

G7 Leaders Acting Like Mobsters in Seizing Russian Assets as Collateral for Ukraine Loans






US President Joe Biden and the other leaders of the G7 are acting like a bunch of New York Mobsters, as opposed to being leaders of democratic governments and the upholding of international laws, in my opinion, and based on their combined actions of illegalizing the frozen Russian Assets as collateral for very questionable and substantial loans to Ukraine to further its war against Russia.

The G7 attempts to seize Russian assets as collateral for billions of dollars in loans for Ukraine pulled back the curtain to expose the most extraordinary attempt to seize power in modern history but with the pen rather than armies. 

Declassified documents, from the Clinton Administration, revealed a plot that has altered our thinking about the relations between the United States and Russia. The thirst for power comes seething through every line of these papers that alter our perception of reality, change the course of history, and now threaten us with World War III.

International law on the arbitrary seizure and liquidation of assets, particularly when one country seizes the assets of another country without due process, is complex and involves several principles and conventions.

Arbitrary asset seizure without due process or court decisions violates international law and can lead to diplomatic disputes, economic sanctions, and legal challenges in international courts or arbitration tribunals.

The complexities and far-reaching consequences of asset seizures in international relations shall involve prolonged legal battles, international arbitration, and diplomatic negotiations, resulting in financial compensation or the return of assets.

Further, using illegally seized assets as collateral for a significant loan would be highly problematic and risky for several reasons listed below.

In summary, using illegally seized assets as collateral for a large loan is fraught with legal, reputational, financial, and ethical risks. It is crucial for lenders to thoroughly vet and ensure the legitimacy and legal status of any assets used in such transactions to avoid severe consequences or possibly World War 3 atomic consequences.

Legal Challenges:

Ownership Disputes: If the assets are contested, the original owner can file legal claims to recover them. This could result in lengthy and costly legal battles, potentially voiding the collateral agreement.

Court Rulings: International courts or arbitration bodies may rule in favour of the original owner, leading to the seizure or return of the assets, making them unavailable as collateral.


Reputational Risk:

Credibility: Lenders or financial institutions accepting such collateral risk damaging their reputation and credibility. Engaging in transactions involving disputed assets can be seen as unethical or illegal.

Market Perception: Investors and stakeholders may view the institution as unreliable or engaging in risky behaviour, potentially leading to a loss of confidence and financial instability.


Sanctions and Penalties:

International Sanctions: Entities involved in the transaction could face sanctions from governments or international bodies, restricting their ability to operate globally.

Penalties: Financial institutions might face hefty fines and penalties for dealing with assets considered illegally seized or subject to international sanctions.


Financial Risk:

Asset Volatility: Disputed assets may be difficult to value accurately due to their contested status, leading to volatility and potential financial loss.

Liquidity Issues: If the collateral is seized or frozen due to legal disputes, it becomes illiquid, leaving the lender without recourse to recover the loan amount.


Ethical and Compliance Issues:

Due Diligence: Financial institutions must perform rigorous due diligence to ensure the legitimacy of the assets they accept as collateral. Failure to do so could result in compliance violations and regulatory scrutiny.

Ethical Standards: Using contested assets may violate ethical standards and corporate governance principles, leading to internal and external repercussions.


Here are a few significant examples:

Iran Hostage Crisis and U.S. Assets (1979-1981):

Background: In 1979, after the Iranian Revolution, Iranian militants seized the U.S. Embassy in Tehran, taking 52 American hostages. In response, the U.S. froze Iranian assets.

Legal Actions and Consequences: The Algiers Accords were signed in 1981 to resolve the crisis, leading to the establishment of the Iran-U.S. Claims Tribunal at The Hague to handle claims by U.S. nationals against Iran. The Tribunal has since resolved thousands of claims, often resulting in financial compensation.


Iraq and Kuwaiti Assets (1990-1991):

Background: During the Gulf War, Iraq invaded Kuwait and seized its assets, including gold reserves and other valuable properties.

Legal Actions and Consequences: Following Iraq's defeat, the United Nations Compensation Commission (UNCC) was established to process claims and compensate victims of Iraq's invasion of Kuwait. Iraq has been required to pay billions of dollars in reparations to Kuwait and other affected parties.


Libyan Assets (2011):

Background: During the Libyan Civil War, several countries froze the assets of the Libyan government and entities linked to Muammar Gaddafi.

Legal Actions and Consequences: The UN Security Council passed resolutions authorizing the asset freezes. After Gaddafi's fall, the assets were intended to be returned to support the rebuilding of Libya, although the process has been complex and ongoing.


Russian Assets in Ukraine (2014-present):

Background: Following Russia's annexation of Crimea and its involvement in the conflict in Eastern Ukraine, many Western countries imposed sanctions and froze Russian assets.

Legal Actions and Consequences: Various legal cases have been brought before international courts. For instance, Ukraine has pursued claims against Russia at the Permanent Court of Arbitration and the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR). These cases are still ongoing, with significant political and economic implications.


Venezuela and U.S. Sanctions (2019-present):

Background: The U.S. imposed sanctions on Venezuela and froze the Venezuelan government's assets, including those of the state oil company PDVSA.

Legal Actions and Consequences: The Venezuelan government has contested these actions in international courts, including the International Court of Justice (ICJ). The ongoing legal battles have significant impacts on Venezuela's economy and international relations.


Articles:

https://nsarchive.gwu.edu/briefing-book/russia-programs/2020-11-02/putin-clinton-transitions

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2024/6/14/putin-calls-g7s-deal-on-frozen-russian-assets-for-ukraine-loan-theft

Wednesday, June 12, 2024

Canada’s Housing Paradox: Growth Amid Stagnation



Canada is experiencing a unique and complex scenario where record population growth is joined by a slowdown in new home construction. At first glance, this might seem contradictory, but a deeper analysis reveals underlying issues related to government policies and financial leverage.

The measures introduced by the CMHC and the GoC are more about providing bailouts to developers and maintaining land values than addressing housing affordability. Extending amortization periods might offer a short-term solution, but it fails to tackle the fundamental inefficiencies in the housing market.

This approach underscores the need for transparent and long-term planning in housing policy. Real solutions should focus on sustainable development and affordability, rather than temporary financial fixes that could lead to greater problems down the line.

Government Claims and Confidential Revelations

The Government of Canada (GoC) publicly attributes the housing slowdown to regulatory constraints, implying that housing is "illegal." However, a confidential memo to lenders reveals a different story: the issue is rooted in leverage. The Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) has discreetly informed lenders of plans to extend the maximum amortization periods, allowing loans to be repaid over an extended period of up to 55 years for certain projects. This move aims to prevent defaults on projects by enabling borrowers to spread their repayment over a much longer timeframe.

CMHC’s Multi-Unit Mortgage Loan Insurance (MU MLI) Program

The CMHC’s MU MLI program plays a critical role in this dynamic. It provides mortgage insurance for multi-unit residential housing, transferring the default risk from lenders to the state. Traditionally, the capital for this program was raised through investors. However, due to a significant pullback from Canadian investments, the GoC has started borrowing money to purchase these bonds, initially setting a cap of $40 billion for 2024 and proposing to increase it to $60 billion.

Leverage and Its Consequences

Despite the housing minister’s assertion that the solution lies in "legalizing" housing, the changes to the insurance program suggest otherwise. The root cause of the slowdown is excessive leverage, which the CMHC is paradoxically attempting to address by introducing even more leverage.

Starting June 24, 2024, the CMHC will extend the maximum amortization period for new construction market projects from 40 to 50 years. Additionally, for re-amortization as a default management tool, the period will extend from 40 to 50 years for loans under Market MLI, and up to 55 years for loans under MLI Select.

Implications of Extended Amortization

Introducing longer amortization periods may seem like a temporary relief for borrowers, but it leads to several significant issues:

  1. Increased Inefficiency: More leverage exacerbates inefficient project fundamentals. Research from central banks indicates that while more credit might lower costs temporarily, it ultimately leads to higher long-term costs.
  2. Housing Costs: Increased leverage can drive up the cost of housing, as the same pool of labour and materials competes for construction projects.
  3. Building Lifespan: The average lifespan of residential housing is typically shorter than the mortgage period being offered. With an average service life of 50-60 years, many buildings will become functionally obsolete before the mortgage is fully repaid.
  4. Policy Implications: The government’s focus appears to be on maintaining home values to support investments, rather than genuinely improving housing affordability.

Tuesday, June 11, 2024

The Artificial Construction of Racism in North America and The World



Racism in North America and the world was and is not a natural or inevitable phenomenon but a Socially Constructed System designed to benefit certain groups at the expense of others. 

Understanding its origins and implications is crucial for addressing the ongoing challenges of the designated system of Social Cass/Caste inequality. 

Through awareness, policy change, and collective action, society can move towards greater equity and justice, ensuring that all individuals have the opportunity to thrive regardless of their cultural, racial or ethnic background.

Racism, throughout the world and including in North America, has been historically constructed to justify economic exploitation and maintain power hierarchies. Initially rooted in the pre-colonial era and solidified through slavery and segregation, these Socially Constructed Class Systems of social distinctions have been perpetuated through various political and economic mechanisms. 

Today, the legacy of these historical practices continues in the form, not of racism but rather of the Structural Class Social Systems, impacting education, employment, housing, healthcare, and criminal justice systems.  Structural Class Social Systems, not Racial issues, remain politically polarized, with social movements advocating for systemic change and greater equality/equity for specific groups based on political ideologies and nothing else.

By recognizing the artificial construction of racism and understanding its historical and political implications, society can begin to dismantle these Social Class Structures and work towards a more just and equitable future. Addressing the root causes of class inequality requires a concerted effort across all sectors and classes of society, challenging entrenched attitudes and policies that perpetuate discrimination and marginalization of Structural Class Social Systems of social classes.

The system of these Socially Constructed Class Systems in North America is deeply intertwined with historical, economic, and political factors. Understanding this context helps in addressing the ongoing challenges of class inequality. By acknowledging and dismantling these artificial constructs, society can move towards greater equality and justice in my view.


1. Historical Context of Race and Social Stratification

  • Race as a Social Construct: The concept of race has been socially constructed to differentiate groups of people, often for the benefit of those in power. This differentiation has historically been based on a superficial trait such as skin colour.
  • Caste and Class Systems: These systems have existed in various forms across different societies. While caste systems are often rigid and based on birth, class systems are more fluid, allowing for social mobility based on economic factors.

2. Class Systems

  • Definition: Class systems categorize people based on their economic status, typically defined by wealth, income, education and occupation.
  • Mobility: These systems are characterized by their potential for social mobility. Individuals can move between classes through changes in income, education, or occupation.
  • Characteristics:
    • Economic Basis: Class distinctions are primarily economic and education.
    • Meritocracy: Ideally, individuals can ascend or descend the social ladder based on merit.
    • Open Society: There are no rigid barriers preventing movement between classes.
    • No Prescribed Lifestyle: Class does not dictate food habits, dress codes, or rituals.

3. Caste Systems

  • Definition: Caste systems are hierarchical social stratifications based on inherited status. They are rigid and dictate one’s occupation, social interactions, and lifestyle.
  • Evolution: Initially, these systems were based on functional divisions (like the Varna system in India), but they evolved into hereditary and rigid structures.
  • Characteristics:
    • Birth-Based: One’s caste is determined by birth, not by individual ability or achievement.
    • Immobility: Movement between castes is generally impossible.
    • Cultural Reinforcement: Caste systems are often reinforced by cultural, social and religious practices.
    • Prescribed Lifestyle: Caste dictates food habits, dress codes, and rituals, and there are strict rules regarding intercaste marriages.

4. Race and Biology

  • Genetic Similarity: Scientifically, humans are 99.9% genetically identical. The concept of race is more about geographic origin and adaptation to environmental factors (like melanin production) than about fundamental biological differences.
  • Historical Misinterpretations: Historically, race has been misinterpreted as a biological reality, which has been used to justify unequal treatment and social hierarchies.

5. Race, Class, and Caste Intersections

  • Race and Class: In many societies, race and class intersect, with racial minorities often disproportionately represented in lower economic classes due to historical and social discrimination.
  • Caste and Class: While caste and class might seem distinct, they interact. For instance, in India, lower castes often face educational and economic disadvantages, reinforcing their social status.

6. Modern Implications

  • Policy and Law: In countries like the United States, legal and policy debates have long focused on defining and addressing racial distinctions, reflecting the socially constructed nature of race rather than the Socially Constructed Class Systems.
  • Social Justice: Understanding the constructed nature of these distinctions is crucial for addressing social equality and inequalities. Efforts to promote equality often involve challenging the social constructs of race, class, and caste. yet not the Socially Constructed Class Systems in North America and the world.

Additional Historical Context

  1. Colonial Era: The foundation of Socially Constructed Class Systems in North America can be traced back to the colonial era when European colonizers began differentiating between themselves and the Indigenous peoples they encountered. These social class distinctions were further solidified with the importation of African slaves, who were dehumanized and treated as property to justify their exploitation similar to the Caste system in India and Africa.

  2. Slavery and Segregation: The establishment of slavery in the American South created a rigid social class hierarchy, with laws and social norms designed to maintain social class distinctions.

  3.  Even after the abolition of slavery, segregation laws (Jim Crow) institutionalized class distinctions and inequalities, embedding a Socially Constructed Class system deeply into the fabric of American and North American society.

Political Ideologies and Racism

  1. Economic Interests: Throughout history, racism has often been employed to protect economic interests. The institution of slavery was integral to the Southern plantation economy, and post-slavery segregation continued to economically benefit certain groups by maintaining a cheap labour force and restricting economic opportunities for African Americans.

  2. Power Dynamics: Racism has also been a tool for maintaining power. By fostering divisions along racial lines, elites could prevent unified efforts for social and economic justice. This "divide and conquer" strategy has been a persistent theme in American political history, ensuring that power remains concentrated in the hands of a few.

  3. Policy and Legislation: Various policies and laws have reinforced racial distinctions throughout American history. These include segregation laws, discriminatory immigration policies, housing practices such as redlining, and biased criminal justice practices. These laws and policies have systematically disadvantaged people of colour, perpetuating cycles of poverty and marginalization.

Modern Implications

  1. Structural Racism: The legacy of historical racism continues to manifest in structural disparities across various sectors, including education, employment, housing, healthcare, and criminal justice. These disparities disproportionately affect people of colour, reflecting the deep-rooted nature of racial inequality in North America.

  2. Political Polarization: Racial issues are often at the center of political debates, with different ideologies offering varying perspectives on how to address them. For instance, discussions on affirmative action, police reform, and immigration policies often reflect deeper ideological divides, with some viewing these issues through a lens of racial justice and others through a lens of economic or national security.

  3. Social Movements: Modern social movements such as Black Lives Matter highlight the ongoing struggles against racial injustice and advocate for systemic change. These movements challenge the political status quo and seek to address the deep-rooted causes of racial inequality, calling for reforms in policing, criminal justice, and broader societal attitudes towards race as opposed to the actual cause continued by Socially Constructed Class Systems of social distinctions.

Monday, June 10, 2024

Why the U.S. Supreme Court Must Intervene in Trump's New York Case

 

The New York case against former President Donald Trump has raised numerous constitutional and legal issues that necessitate intervention by the U.S. Supreme Court. The case involves complex intersections of state and federal laws, potentially undermining fundamental constitutional rights and the integrity of the legal process.

The U.S. Supreme Court must intervene to ensure the legal process remains fair, impartial, and consistent with constitutional principles. The potential for political motivations to undermine the judicial process poses a threat to the integrity of the legal system and the fundamental rights of individuals. By addressing these issues, the Supreme Court can reinforce the separation of powers, uphold constitutional protections, and ensure justice is served without political interference.

Comparing the Trump New York case to the Bush v. Gore intervention by the Supreme Court provides a clear perspective on why Supreme Court involvement is essential.

The Trump New York case, like Bush v. Gore, involves critical constitutional issues with significant political and legal implications. The Supreme Court's intervention is necessary to address potential violations of fundamental rights, maintain the separation of powers, and ensure the integrity of the judicial process. Drawing parallels with the Bush v. Gore decision, it becomes evident that the Supreme Court's role is pivotal in safeguarding constitutional principles and upholding justice in politically sensitive cases.

Why the Supreme Court's intervention is crucial:

  • Violation of First Amendment Rights: The case involves allegations of violations of federal campaign laws, free speech gag orders, and nondisclosure agreements. These issues directly impact the defendant's First Amendment rights. The restriction on Trump's ability to speak freely, especially in a politically charged environment, is a serious infringement on free speech protections guaranteed by the Constitution.

  • Due Process and Equal Protection Concerns: The case raises significant due process and equal protection issues under the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments. The procedural handling of the case, including the timing and how it was brought forward, suggests potential political motivations. This could result in an unfair trial process, undermining the defendant's right to due process and equal protection under the law.

  • Interference with Federal Election Laws: The charges involve aspects of federal election contribution laws. State courts interfering in matters that fall under federal jurisdiction could set a dangerous precedent. It is essential to maintain a clear distinction between state and federal authority to ensure a fair and consistent application of election laws across the country.

  • Political Motivations and Weaponization of the Legal System: The prosecutor in this case sought political office with a promise to charge Trump, regardless of the circumstances. This raises serious concerns about the impartiality of the legal process and the potential weaponization of the state courts for political gain. The Supreme Court must address this to preserve the integrity of the judicial system.

  • Right to Call Effective Witnesses: The restrictions on Trump's ability to call witnesses effectively impinge on his Sixth Amendment right to a fair trial. The ability to present a complete defence is a cornerstone of the American legal system, and any limitations on this right must be scrutinized carefully.

  • Precedent for Supreme Court Intervention: The Bush v. Gore case set a precedent for Supreme Court intervention in matters involving federal election laws and constitutional issues. Similar to that case, the current situation involves critical constitutional questions that could have far-reaching implications for the legal and political landscape of the country.

  • Comparing the Trump New York Case to Bush v. Gore

  • 1. Nature of the Cases

    • Bush v. Gore: The case involved the 2000 presidential election and focused on the recount process in Florida. It raised issues of equal protection and due process under the Fourteenth Amendment, as different counties used different standards for recounting votes.
    • Trump New York Case: This case involves allegations of violations of federal campaign laws, free speech restrictions, and potential political motivations behind state prosecution. It raises First Amendment, Fifth Amendment, Sixth Amendment, and Fourteenth Amendment concerns.

    2. Constitutional Implications

    • Bush v. Gore: The Supreme Court intervened to ensure a uniform standard for vote recounts, emphasizing the equal protection clause to prevent arbitrary and inconsistent practices that could undermine the fairness of the election process.
    • Trump New York Case: Intervention is needed to address potential violations of free speech, due process, equal protection, and the right to a fair trial. The case's handling could set a precedent for the misuse of state courts to affect federal election laws and constitutional rights.

    3. Political Context

    • Bush v. Gore: The case was highly politicized, with significant implications for the outcome of the presidential election. The Supreme Court's decision effectively determined the winner of the 2000 election.
    • Trump New York Case: Similarly politicized, the case involves a former president and the potential 2024 presidential candidate. The motivations behind the prosecution and the impact on Trump's political future necessitate scrutiny to prevent political weaponization of the legal system.

    4. Judicial Precedent and Separation of Powers

    • Bush v. Gore: The intervention underscored the role of the Supreme Court in ensuring that state actions do not violate federal constitutional principles, particularly in matters affecting national elections.
    • Trump New York Case: The Supreme Court must again assert its role in maintaining the balance of power between state and federal jurisdictions, ensuring that state actions do not infringe on federally protected rights and election laws.

    5. Legal and Public Trust

    • Bush v. Gore: The decision aimed to maintain public trust in the electoral process by providing a clear resolution to the contentious recount issue.
    • Trump New York Case: Intervention is crucial to maintaining public trust in the judicial process. Addressing potential biases and ensuring a fair trial for a high-profile defendant reinforces the integrity of the legal system.

    6. Long-term Implications

    • Bush v. Gore: The case set a precedent for federal oversight in state election procedures, highlighting the importance of uniform standards to protect constitutional rights.
    • Trump New York Case: A Supreme Court ruling could set a precedent for limiting political interference in the judicial process and reinforcing the protection of constitutional rights across state and federal jurisdictions.
  • Sunday, June 9, 2024

    Terrorism: A Global UnBalanced Threat and NATO's Role in Combatting It

     

    Terrorism remains one of the most significant asymmetric threats to global security, affecting citizens worldwide and undermining international stability and prosperity. 

    This persistent global issue transcends borders, nationalities, and religions, posing a challenge that necessitates a unified and robust response from the international community. 

    Among the international actors, NATO could be a key player in the fight against terrorism. However, there is a growing perception that while NATO speaks extensively about counter-terrorism, its actions often do not match its rhetoric, particularly regarding groups like Hamas and the Houthis.

    The path forward requires NATO to move beyond strategic dialogues and take decisive, unified actions against terrorist threats to ensure global stability and security.

    Terrorism indeed poses a significant asymmetric threat to global security, transcending borders, nationalities, and religions. It requires a concerted effort from the international community to combat effectively.

    The Asymmetric Nature of Terrorism

    Terrorism, by its very nature, leverages asymmetric tactics to achieve its goals. Unlike conventional warfare, terrorist organizations utilize unconventional means to instill fear, disrupt societies, and gain political leverage. These tactics include suicide bombings, hijackings, cyber-attacks, and other forms of violence aimed at civilians and infrastructure. The global reach of terrorism means no nation is immune, making it imperative for the international community to collaborate in addressing this threat.

    NATO’s Counter-Terrorism Strategy

    NATO's approach to counter-terrorism encompasses three main areas:

    1. Improving Awareness: NATO enhances the understanding of terrorist threats through intelligence sharing and strategic analysis. By pooling resources and expertise, member countries aim to create a comprehensive picture of the evolving terrorist landscape.

    2. Developing Capabilities: To prepare and respond effectively to terrorist threats, NATO focuses on strengthening its defence mechanisms, cyber defence, and crisis management capabilities. This involves both military readiness and the development of technologies to counteract terrorist activities.

    3. Enhancing Engagement: NATO says it will collaborate with partner countries and other international organizations to build a united front against terrorism. This engagement includes training, joint exercises, and diplomatic efforts to foster cooperation and coordination yet lacks a meaningful all-out war on terrorist organizations worldwide.

    The Gap Between Rhetoric and Action

    Despite these strategic efforts, a noticeable gap exists between NATO's rhetoric and its tangible actions. Particularly concerning terrorist organizations like Hamas and the Houthis, NATO's direct involvement has been limited at best or non-existent at worst.

    • Hamas: Recognized as a terrorist organization by the United States and the European Union, Hamas operates mainly in the Palestinian territories. While individual NATO members condemn Hamas and take measures against its activities, NATO as a collective entity has not engaged in direct military action against the group.

    • Houthis: The Houthi terrorist movement in Yemen, involved in a prolonged conflict with the Yemeni government and its allies, has also been labelled as a terrorist organization. The terrorist Houthis' tactics and regional destabilization efforts have drawn international concern. However, NATO’s engagement has primarily been indirect, focusing on broader regional security rather than targeted military action against the Houthis when international shipping, daily takes a hit which affects the world economy and price of goods for the world's citizenry.

    The Path Forward: Bridging the Gap

    For NATO to effectively combat terrorism and align its actions with its rhetoric, several steps are essential:

    1. Coordinated Action: Joint military operations, enhanced intelligence sharing, and strategic planning tailored to counter specific terrorist groups are crucial. NATO needs to move beyond general strategies and implement targeted actions against groups like Hamas and the Houthis.

    2. Enhanced Operational Readiness: Developing rapid deployment capabilities and flexible response strategies will enable NATO to address emerging threats promptly and effectively.

    3. Stronger Partnerships: Deepening collaboration with countries and organizations directly affected by terrorism is vital. By working closely with local governments and regional bodies, NATO can create a more comprehensive and cohesive counter-terrorism strategy.

    Conclusion

    Terrorism continues to be a formidable global threat requiring a unified and decisive response from the international community. While NATO's strategic framework for counter-terrorism is well-articulated, there is a pressing need for more concrete actions to match its rhetoric. By enhancing coordinated efforts, operational readiness, and partnerships, NATO can play a more effective role in countering terrorism and ensuring global stability and security.

    The Hypocrisy of the D8 Countries in Condemning Israel While Committing Genocide and Human Rights Abuses

     

    The Developing Eight (D8) group of countries—Turkey, Egypt, Iran, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Malaysia, Nigeria, and Pakistan—have consistently condemned Israel over various issues, particularly its conflicts with Hamas. 

    However, these countries have their own dark histories and ongoing practices of human rights abuses and genocides, making their condemnations appear hypocritical. 

    Here’s a detailed look at each of these countries and their troubling records:

    1. Turkey: A Country That Committed Genocide Yet Denies It Today

    Turkey has a well-documented history of genocide, most notably the Armenian Genocide during World War I, where an estimated 1.5 million Armenians were systematically exterminated. Despite overwhelming historical evidence, Turkey continues to deny the genocide to this day. Additionally, Turkey's ongoing conflicts with the Kurdish population have involved significant human rights violations, including reports of forced displacement and extrajudicial killings.

    2. Egypt’s Prolonged Human Rights Crisis

    Egypt has been in the grip of a prolonged human rights crisis, marked by severe restrictions on freedoms of expression, association, and assembly. The government under President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi has been accused of widespread abuses, including arbitrary detention, torture, enforced disappearances, and unfair trials. Political dissent is harshly punished, and the crackdown on civil society continues unabated.

    3. Iran’s Repression Amounts to Crimes Against Humanity: UN

    Iran is notorious for its severe repression of political dissent, religious minorities, and women's rights activists. The United Nations has reported that Iran’s human rights abuses amount to crimes against humanity. These abuses include torture, arbitrary detentions, and executions. The government's crackdown on protests and freedom of expression further exacerbates the dire human rights situation.

    4. Bangladesh Genocide and Its Silence

    Bangladesh has its own dark chapter of genocide during its war of independence in 1971, where Pakistani forces and local collaborators committed mass atrocities, including rape and murder. While the current government has tried to address these historical crimes, Bangladesh faces criticism for its treatment of Rohingya refugees and allegations of human rights abuses against political opponents and activists.

    5. Indonesian Human Rights Abuses

    Indonesia has faced numerous accusations of human rights abuses, particularly in regions like Papua and West Papua, where security forces have been implicated in extrajudicial killings, torture, and arbitrary arrests of indigenous Papuans. Additionally, past atrocities such as the anti-communist purges of the 1960s, which resulted in the deaths of an estimated 500,000 to one million people, remain unresolved.

    6. Malaysia’s Shocking Abuses Against Indigenous Peoples Defending Their Land

    Malaysia has been criticized for its treatment of indigenous peoples, especially those defending their land rights against encroachment by palm oil plantations and logging companies. Indigenous communities face forced displacement, loss of livelihoods, and inadequate access to basic services. The government’s failure to protect these communities’ rights has been a major human rights concern.

    7. Nigeria’s Human Rights and Genocide Violations

    Nigeria has a troubling record of human rights violations and acts that can be categorized as genocide, especially concerning the Boko Haram insurgency. The military’s heavy-handed response to insurgency has led to numerous reports of extrajudicial killings, torture, and mass displacements of civilians. Additionally, ethnic and religious violence in various parts of the country has resulted in thousands of deaths and widespread suffering.

    8. Pakistan’s Campaign of Mass Murder, Rape, and Other Atrocities

    Pakistan has been implicated in numerous human rights abuses and acts of genocide, particularly during the 1971 war with Bangladesh, where its forces committed mass murder, rape, and other atrocities. More recently, Pakistan has faced accusations of enforced disappearances, extrajudicial killings, and severe repression in regions like Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Religious minorities and political dissenters also suffer from systemic abuses.

    Conclusion

    The D8 countries' condemnation of Israel, while they commit grave human rights abuses and genocides, highlights a glaring hypocrisy. These countries need to address their own human rights records and end their abusive practices before pointing fingers at others. 

    True justice and accountability must start at home.

    Thursday, June 6, 2024

    A Framework for Economic Stability: Zero Inflation, Controlled Money Supply Growth, and Capped Interest Rates

     

    In economic policy, the pursuit of stability and growth remains paramount. Traditional approaches, such as the widely accepted 2% inflation target, have merits yet have significant drawbacks. 

    As an alternative, a framework consisting of a zero inflation target, money supply growth capped at 2% above the zero inflation rate, and interest rates capped at a maximum of 4% offers a compelling path toward sustainable economic stability and consumer benefit. This proposal aligns with the principles of Milton Friedman's theories while addressing the complexities of modern economies.

    The Proposed Framework

    1. Zero Inflation Target: Maintaining a stable price level ensures that the purchasing power of money remains constant over time.
    2. Money Supply Growth Cap: Limiting money supply growth to 2% above zero inflation provides liquidity without inducing inflation.
    3. Interest Rate Cap: Capping interest rates at a maximum of 4% keeps borrowing costs affordable and predictable.

    Rationale for the Framework


    1. Zero Inflation Target

    Consumer Confidence and Purchasing Power: Zero inflation preserves the value of money, allowing consumers to plan their spending and savings without the fear of eroding purchasing power. This stability is crucial for long-term financial planning and confidence.

    Business Planning and Investment: Businesses thrive in a stable price environment, as it allows for accurate forecasting and long-term investment decisions. This predictability fosters economic growth by encouraging innovation and expansion.

    Mitigating Deflation Risks: While zero inflation aims for price stability, it also guards against the negative impacts of deflation. Deflation can lead to decreased consumer spending and increased debt burdens, which this policy seeks to avoid.

    2. Controlled Money Supply Growth

    Inflation Control: By capping money supply growth at 2% above zero inflation, the framework minimizes the risk of inflation. This controlled growth ensures that the money supply expands at a pace that supports economic activity without leading to excessive price increases.

    Monetary Flexibility: The 2% cap provides enough liquidity to support economic growth and respond to short-term economic shocks while maintaining overall price stability. This balance is key to fostering a stable economic environment.

    3. Interest Rate Cap

    Affordable Borrowing Costs: Capping interest rates at 4% ensures that borrowing costs remain low, stimulating investment and consumer spending. This is particularly important for economic recovery and growth.

    Predictability and Stability: Predictable interest rates provide stability for both borrowers and lenders. This predictability reduces uncertainty and supports long-term financial planning and investment.

    Economic Stimulus: Low interest rates encourage borrowing and spending, driving economic activity. This stimulus is essential for maintaining momentum in the economy, especially during periods of economic downturn.

    Case Study Analysis: The Great Depression

    To understand the potential impact of this policy framework, let's apply it to the Great Depression, a period marked by severe deflation and economic contraction.

    Historical Context

    • Deflation Causes: Stock market crash, bank failures, reduced consumer and business spending, tight initial monetary policy.
    • Economic Impact: GDP contraction, skyrocketing unemployment, severe price deflation (~25% decrease in prices).

    Hypothetical Policy Implementation

    Monetary Policy Adjustments:

    • Money Supply: Instead of contracting by ~30%, the money supply would be increased by up to 2% annually.
    • Interest Rates: Cap nominal interest rates at 4%.

    Counterfactual Economic Outcomes:

    • GDP and Employment: The proactive increase in money supply and capped interest rates would likely result in less severe GDP decline and lower unemployment rates.
    • Inflation/Deflation: Controlled money supply growth could prevent sharp deflation, maintaining stable price levels around zero inflation.
    • Financial Stability: Increased money supply and capped interest rates could stabilize the banking sector, reducing the likelihood of bank failures and financial panic.

    Challenges and Mitigation Strategies

    1. Deflation Risks:

      • Economic Stagnation: The risk of deflation can lead to reduced consumer spending and business investment.
      • Mitigation: Implement unconventional monetary policies, such as quantitative easing, to inject liquidity into the economy during downturns. Fiscal policies, like increased government spending and tax cuts, can also stimulate demand.
    2. Interest Rate Cap Constraints:

      • Limited Monetary Policy Tools: With a cap on interest rates, central banks have less room to maneuver in response to economic shocks.
      • Mitigation: Utilize other tools like forward guidance, asset purchases, and macroprudential policies to maintain financial stability and economic growth.
    3. Money Supply Management:

      • Monitoring and Adjusting: Ensuring the money supply grows at a controlled rate requires continuous monitoring and adjustment.
      • Mitigation: Develop robust monetary policy frameworks and tools to accurately measure and control money supply growth. Coordination with fiscal policy can enhance effectiveness.

    Long-term Benefits

    1. Sustainable Economic Growth:

      • Investment and Innovation: Stable prices and affordable borrowing costs encourage long-term investments and innovation, driving sustainable economic growth.
      • Consumer Welfare: Enhanced consumer confidence and purchasing power contribute to improved welfare and quality of life.
    2. Financial Stability:

      • Debt Management: Predictable and manageable debt servicing costs reduce the risk of financial crises and promote financial stability.
      • Risk Mitigation: Controlled money supply growth and stable interest rates help mitigate the risks of asset bubbles and financial market volatility.

    Conclusion

    The proposed framework of a zero inflation target, money supply growth capped at 2% above zero inflation, and interest rates capped at a maximum of 4% offers a structured and balanced approach to achieving long-term economic stability and consumer benefits. While there are challenges, particularly related to deflation risks and limited monetary policy tools, these can be mitigated through robust policy frameworks, continuous monitoring, and effective coordination with fiscal policy. This approach aligns with the principles of Milton Friedman's theory, emphasizing price stability and controlled monetary growth, ultimately fostering a stable and prosperous economic environment.

    Wednesday, June 5, 2024

    Proposal Capping Interest Rates: Linked to Inflation Rate

     

    In recent years, the volatility of interest rates has become a significant concern for both consumers and financial institutions. The concept of pegging interest rates to inflation with a fixed cap has garnered attention as a potential solution to promote economic stability and protect borrowers. This article delves into the implications of such a proposal, examining its potential benefits and challenges.

    Understanding the Proposal

    The proposed policy suggests that interest rates for credit cards, bank loans, and first mortgages should not exceed 3 percentage points above the annual inflation rate. This approach aims to create a more predictable and stable lending environment, benefiting both borrowers and the broader economy.

    The Current Landscape

    Interest rates are already influenced by inflation as part of broader monetary policy. Central banks, like the Federal Reserve, adjust interest rates based on various economic indicators, including inflation, employment, and economic growth. However, this proposal introduces a specific limit, offering a clear upper bound for interest rates, which could enhance consumer protection.

    Benefits of the Proposal

    1. Consumer Protection: A fixed cap on interest rates can prevent excessively high borrowing costs, making loans more affordable for consumers. This protection can reduce the likelihood of defaults and financial distress among borrowers.

    2. Predictability and Stability: By linking interest rates to inflation with a fixed cap, borrowers and lenders can enjoy greater predictability. This stability allows consumers and businesses to plan their finances more effectively, promoting sustained economic growth.

    3. Economic Stability: Tying interest rates to inflation ensures that monetary policy remains responsive to economic conditions. This responsiveness can help stabilize the economy by mitigating the impact of inflationary pressures on borrowing costs.

    Challenges and Considerations

    1. Impact on Lenders: Financial institutions might face reduced profitability, particularly during periods of low inflation. To compensate, banks may need to adjust their business models, potentially leading to higher fees or stricter lending criteria.

    2. Market Distortion: Artificially capping interest rates could distort the lending market, potentially reducing the availability of credit. Lenders might become more cautious, resulting in stricter credit requirements for borrowers.

    3. Implementation and Enforcement: Establishing and maintaining such a policy would require robust regulatory mechanisms. Ensuring compliance and adapting the policy to different economic conditions could pose significant challenges.

    4. Inflation Volatility: Inflation rates can be volatile, leading to rapid changes in borrowing costs. Borrowers may find it challenging to manage their finances in such an environment, necessitating effective risk management strategies.

    Real-World Examples and Lessons Learned

    Several countries have experimented with interest rate caps, offering valuable lessons for policymakers. For instance, historical precedents demonstrate the importance of balancing consumer protection with financial sector health. Analyzing these examples can help identify potential pitfalls and best practices for implementing the proposed policy.

    Conclusion

    The proposal to cap interest rates at a fixed spread above inflation holds significant promise for promoting fairer lending practices and economic stability. However, careful consideration is required to balance the interests of consumers and lenders and to address potential unintended consequences. By learning from real-world examples and implementing robust regulatory frameworks, policymakers can create a more stable and predictable lending environment, benefiting the broader economy.

    As this proposal continues to be debated, it is essential to keep in mind the overarching goal: to protect consumers while ensuring a healthy, resilient financial sector capable of supporting sustained economic growth.

    Thursday, May 30, 2024

    Hamas's Gaza Claimed Civilian Casualties Inflated Based on Historical Facts


    The reported numbers of civilian casualties in Gaza are inflated, as the terrorist group Hamas is the one putting out the figures, as the exact impact can only be determined through rigorous and independent verification which today has not happened.  

    The high civilian-to-combatant death ratio, reliance on Hamas local sources, and basically no access to independent observers all contribute to the grossly conceivably inflated numbers, with no vigorous independent outside continuous efforts to improve data accuracy and verification which is essential for a true understanding of the conflict's impact relating to actual combat and civilian deaths.

    What is strange is that politicians, as well as large sections of the public and the media, are buying into a narrative crafted by a murderous, amoral, duplicitous cult. Last year, Michael Milshtein, a retired Israeli intelligence official and an expert on Palestinian media affairs, told The New Yorker that Hamas thinks all Westerners are stupid. They may be right.

    It’s not that Hamas has made truth a casualty of war, it’s that it has convinced so many to embrace lies with easy abandon.

    While reported civilian casualty numbers in Gaza are inflated, rigorous and independent verification is needed to determine the exact actual numbers. The high civilian-to-combatant death ratio, reliance on local sources, and limited access to independent observers contribute to inflated numbers. Continuous efforts to improve data accuracy and verification are essential to truly understand the conflict's impact.

    Final Thoughts

    Accurate reporting of civilian casualties is crucial for understanding the humanitarian impact of conflicts, guiding international response, and ensuring legal accountability. By comparing different conflicts and examining the challenges in casualty reporting, we can better appreciate the complexities and strive for more reliable data instead of mostly propagandized reports.

    Civilian casualties in conflicts have always been a critical and often contentious issue. This analysis compares civilian deaths during World War II, the Ukraine war, and the ongoing conflict in Gaza. By examining the numbers, sources, and context, we can better understand the humanitarian impact and the challenges in accurate casualty reporting.

    World War II Civilian Deaths

    Duration and Scale:

    • Duration: 1939-1945.
    • Global conflict involving multiple continents and major powers.

    Estimated Civilian Deaths:

    • Approximately 50-55 million.
    • This includes Holocaust victims, bombings, massacres, and other war-related causes, with significant losses in the Soviet Union, China, Poland, Japan, and Germany.

    Civilian Deaths in the Ukraine War (2022-Present)

    Duration and Scale:

    • Ongoing since February 2022.
    • Localized conflict involving Russia and Ukraine with international implications.

    Estimated Civilian Deaths:

    • As of early 2024, estimates range between 8,000 to 12,000.
    • These figures come from the United Nations, Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), and other monitoring bodies.

    Civilian Deaths in the Gaza Conflict

    Duration and Scale:

    • Multiple conflicts over the years, with significant escalation in 2023-2024.
    • Highly populated and small geographical area.

    Estimated Civilian Deaths:

    • Recent reports suggest around 4,000-5,000 civilian deaths in the 2023-2024 conflict.
    • Sources include Palestinian health authorities, the Israeli military, the United Nations, and NGOs.

    Civilian vs. Combatant Deaths in Gaza

    Recent Conflict (2023-2024):

    • Civilian deaths: ~4,000-5,000.
    • Combatant deaths: ~1,000-2,000.
    • This results in a ratio of approximately 2-5 civilian deaths for every combatant death.

    Comparative Analysis

    Civilian-to-Combatant Death Ratio:

    • WWII: Civilian deaths were approximately twice the military deaths.
    • Ukraine: Civilian deaths are lower compared to military deaths.
    • Gaza: The higher ratio (~2-5:1) suggests that many reported civilian deaths might include combatants or individuals involved in hostilities.

    Indicators of Potentially Inflated Numbers:

    • Sources of Data: Local health authorities in Gaza may have biases or political motivations.
    • Discrepancies in Reporting: Different organizations report varying figures, and independent verification is challenging.
    • Nature of the Conflict: Gaza's high population density and militants operating within civilian areas complicate casualty counts.

    Verification and Reporting Challenges

    Access Restrictions:

    • Limited access for independent observers and media in Gaza hampers accurate reporting.
    • Independent investigations by international bodies are essential for precise assessments.

    Technological and Satellite Data:

    • Satellite imagery and other technologies are increasingly used for damage and casualty assessments but require on-the-ground corroboration.

    Broader Implications

    Humanitarian Impact:

    • Significant displacement, injuries, and psychological trauma among civilians.
    • Damage to infrastructure exacerbates the humanitarian crisis.

    International Response:

    • The international community's response is influenced by reported casualty figures.
    • Accurate reporting is crucial for appropriate humanitarian aid and diplomatic efforts.

    Legal and Ethical Considerations:

    • Misreporting or inflating numbers affects legal assessments and accountability for potential war crimes.

    Recommendations

    Strengthening Independent Verification:

    • Advocate for unrestricted access for international observers and journalists in conflict zones.
    • Support neutral organizations providing unbiased casualty reporting.

    Improving Data Collection Methods:

    • Utilize advanced technologies alongside traditional methods.
    • Encourage transparency from all parties in the conflict.

    Education and Awareness:

    • Raise awareness about the importance of accurate reporting.
    • Educate the public and policymakers on casualty reporting complexities.

    Wednesday, May 29, 2024

    Justice System and Constitution in USA MORE Political than Judicial

     


    The Supreme Court Has Never Been "politically neutral"

     Over the last 25 years PLUS, the court has become just another partisan institution. 


    The Supreme Court was to devolve into just one more political institution, in an age of extreme partisanship and polarization, the fear goes, that the guardrails supporting our Constitutional system would fall away.

    Andrew Jackson was open about defying the Supreme Court and firmly executed his Executive Power with the Indian Removal Act in 1830.

    The Supreme Court has not just been divided along the ideological lines that always existed, but divided along partisan lines, with every justice appointed by a Democrat voting more liberally than every justice appointed by a Republican. That is far from the historical norm.

  • Supreme Court and Partisanship: The Supreme Court is increasingly seen as a political institution amid extreme partisanship and polarization, potentially undermining the Constitutional system.

  • Historical Defiance: Andrew Jackson openly defied the Supreme Court by using executive power to enforce the Indian Removal Act in 1830, exemplifying the dominance of executive authority over judicial rulings.

  • Perception of Partisanship: There is a growing sense that law is becoming synonymous with partisan politics, with the Supreme Court's recent decisions reflecting political motivations.

  • Roe v. Wade: Campaigns to appoint justices to overturn Roe v. Wade, which were successful, highlight the political nature of judicial appointments.

  • Partisan Division: The Court is now divided along partisan lines, with justices appointed by Democrats voting more liberally than those appointed by Republicans, which deviates from historical norms.

  • Historical Enforcement: The Brown v. Board of Education case demonstrated the need for executive action and societal acceptance to enforce Supreme Court rulings, with President Eisenhower intervening to enforce desegregation.

  • Public Confidence Decline: Polling data shows a significant decline in public approval of the Supreme Court, with many Americans viewing it as politically motivated rather than impartial.

  • Historical Political Engagement: Justices in the past, such as John Jay, John Marshall, and others, were actively involved in political affairs and maintained political ambitions.

  • Abe Fortas Example: Justice Abe Fortas maintained close political ties with President Lyndon B. Johnson, which led to ethical concerns and his eventual resignation, prompting changes in Supreme Court conduct.


  • The Supreme Court has increasingly become viewed as a political institution amidst today's extreme partisanship and polarization. There is a fear that this could undermine the guardrails supporting the Constitutional system. Historically, figures like Andrew Jackson openly defied the Court, showing that executive power often triumphs over judicial rulings.

    Concerns are rising that the law is now perceived as partisan politics. Although some argue that the Court is more committed to law over politics than before, others see its decisions as politically motivated, especially with campaigns influencing judicial appointments, such as the case of Roe v. Wade.

    The Court's division now reflects partisan lines, a significant departure from the past when ideological differences were less pronounced. Historical cases like Brown v. Board of Education show that effective Supreme Court rulings often require executive support and societal acceptance.

    Public confidence in the Supreme Court has declined, with many Americans viewing it as politically driven rather than impartial. This perception is fueled by events like the text message exposure between Virginia Thomas and Mark Meadows.

    The Supreme Court has never been completely apolitical. Early justices engaged in political activities, and throughout history, many justices maintained political ties and ambitions. Notable figures like Earl Warren, Hugo Black, and Abe Fortas exemplified the close relationship between the judiciary and politics.

    Fortas' tenure highlighted the ethical dilemmas of such relationships, leading to his resignation and subsequent changes in Court conduct, including greater transparency and a reduction in direct political advising by justices.

    This historical context reveals the complex interplay between judicial decisions, executive authority, and societal attitudes, challenging the notion of an entirely neutral and apolitical Supreme Court.








    Canadian Taxpayer Fund Universities/Colleges Must First Benefit Canadian Citizens


    The funding structure of Canadian universities and colleges is a critical aspect of the education system, with a significant portion derived from public funds contributed by both federal and provincial taxpayers. 

    In the 2021/2022 academic year, a substantial sum of $22 billion was allocated from provinces, the federal government, and various grants, constituting 52.7% of the institutions' overall funding. This financial support serves as a backbone for the educational opportunities provided to Canadian students, facilitating their access to high-quality tertiary education.

    However, a notable distinction exists in the allocation of these funds, as they are designated exclusively for Canadian students and not extended to international students. This stance aligns with the belief that taxpayer-funded resources should predominantly benefit citizens of the country. The argument for such exclusivity is grounded in the idea that Canadian universities and colleges, supported by taxpayers and donors, should prioritize the education of their citizens.

    In light of these considerations, I propose to restrict and cap the enrollment of international students to a maximum of 15 percent, both at the provincial level and for individual institutions, which emerges as a logical extension of the principle of fairness and equity. 

    By implementing such limitations, the intention is to ensure that the primary beneficiaries of tax-funded and donation-supported higher education institutions are Canadian citizens. This approach seeks to strike a balance between the educational needs of domestic and international students while upholding the responsibility of public institutions to serve the interests of their citizens.

    Proponents of this viewpoint and I would argue that while international students contribute positively to the cultural diversity and economic growth of the country, the core mission of publicly funded institutions should remain focused on providing accessible and high-quality education to Canadian residents. 

    The proposed enrollment cap aims to safeguard the integrity of the educational system, fostering a balanced and inclusive environment that serves the interests of both the local population and international students.

    Further, it is essential to acknowledge that discussions around enrollment caps for international students involve complex considerations, including economic impacts, cultural exchange benefits, and the potential for global collaboration. Striking the right balance between inclusivity and prioritizing domestic interests requires careful deliberation and a nuanced approach to ensure the continued success and sustainability of Canada's higher education system.

    FACTS: There are currently 807,750 international students across all study levels who have study permits in Canada. Of the total 807,750 study permit holders, 551,405 received a study permit in 2022 in Canada. From 2000 until 2021, the number of study permit holders has significantly increased by more than 400%.

    At present, there are 2,194,087 students enrolled in universities and colleges across all provinces in Canada in total. Therefore, using this actual figure of students then here are the following percentages and numbers to consider for international students:

    10% = 219,408 

    15% = 329,113 

    20% = 438,818

    25% would equal and allow 548,522 international students out of the total existing number of 2,194,087.

    Comparing the number of international students between Canada and the USA reveals a trend where Canadian citizens may be overlooked in favour of international students paying higher tuition fees. This raises concerns about our children being left behind in terms of post-secondary education placements within our taxpayer-funded universities and colleges.

    In the USA, there are 16.2 million enrollments in universities and colleges, with 1,057,188 international students, constituting 6.5% of the total enrollment.

    In Canada, there are 2,194,087 enrollments in universities and colleges, with 807,750 international students. This represents 36.8%, which seems disproportionately high considering our population and the available enrollment spaces for Canadian citizen students. It raises questions about the impact on opportunities for our citizens.

     

    Source:

    1 Statistics Canada

    2  Statista - Enrollment of postsecondary students in Canada by province

    3 Education Data - College Enrollment Statistics

    4 Inside Higher Ed - International Enrollment

    Monday, May 27, 2024

    Palestine/Gaza Does Not Meet De Facto (ACTUAL) Requirements OF Statehood

     

    Palestine or the land mass of Gaza, at this point and time, cannot legally be considered a state under international law.

    The ICC and ICJ have made a political not legally binding decision on Israel, Palestine, or Gaza. The ICC and ICJ have ignored the requirements for granting statehood and have made decisions based solely on political ideologies and not international legal grounds.

    The ICJ is known, as the World Court, a UN body for hearing disputes between states and Gaza and or Palestine are NOT States under international law.

    1.         Palestine/Gaza does not meet the de facto requirements of statehood as it lacks independent control over its population, territory, government, and foreign relations. While it has some recognition and a degree of self-determination, it does not achieve de jure statehood under international law. For the ICC and ICJ to recognize Palestine/Gaza as a state/statehood prematurely it shall continue to destabilize the region further.

    2.         For Gaza or Palestine to meet the legal requirements for a state/statehood first a group i.e. Hamas that is or has been designated as a terrorist organization, as a legitimate government under international law, it must “unequivocally renounce terrorism and cease all terrorist activities.” Hamas’s stated Mission is “Murder Jews; “Obliteration” of Israel. “

    3.         Hamas and the Palestinian Authority must both disarm, and demobilization of all armed terrorist factions are crucial steps for even being legally considered for statehood/state and further have demonstrated significant shifts in both the group's behaviour and the perceptions of the international community.

    4.         Compliance with International Law: The group must commit to and comply with international humanitarian and human rights laws and not be a terrorist organization or supporter of terrorism.

    5.         While the PLO transitioned through peace processes, recognized Israel's right to exist, and gained recognition as the representative of the Palestinian people under Article 3 of the Draft United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples defines self-determination as the right of an entity to “freely determine their political status and freely pursue their economic, social and cultural development. Nowhere is it stated that the right to self-determination equals a right to statehood.  Israel has granted Palestine numerous powers in which it has obtained a great degree of self-determination.

    6.         Palestine/Gaza is an autonomous entity, not a state. 

    7.         The UN considers Palestine an international organization rather than a state.  States may individually recognize Palestine, but the international community as a whole does not recognize Palestine as a state.  Therefore, Palestine is not a state by de jure standards as well.

    8.         A state must have the ability to engage in diplomatic and foreign relations with other states. The DOP Article XI creates an Israeli-Palestinian Economic Cooperation Committee to promote the development of the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. Palestine therefore cannot enter into economic agreements with other states without the approval of Israel.

    9.         Section 2 of Article IX on Laws and Military Orders reiterates this point: “Both parties will review jointly laws and military orders presently in remaining spheres.” Under the terms of both the Interim Agreements and the Declaration of Principles, it is clear that the powers Palestine possesses do not extend to the realm of foreign relations.  By signing these agreements, Palestine acknowledged and accepted its inability to conduct foreign relations.  Without this fourth component, Palestine has not achieved de facto statehood.

    10.       Palestine’s ability to enter foreign relations is severely limited by the Interim Accord of 1995.  Article IX, Section 5, which lays out the Powers and Responsibilities of the Palestinian Council, states that: “…the Council will not have powers and responsibilities in the sphere of foreign relations, which sphere includes the establishment abroad of embassies, consulates or other types of foreign missions and posts or permitting their establishment in the West Bank or the Gaza Strip, the appointment of or admission of diplomatic consular staff and the exercise of diplomatic relations [emphasis added].”

    11.       Furthermore, the 1994 Agreement of the Gaza Strip and Jericho calls for the creation of a joint committee called the Civil Affairs and Cooperation Committee to handle civil affairs in the region. Members from both Israel and Palestine are to meet once a month to discuss civil matters including infrastructure, licensing, hospitalization, transportation and other such matters. In this agreement, Israel also states it has authority over “the Settlements, the Military Installation Area, Israelis, external security, internal security and public order” and “shall exercise its authority through its military government” in the region. This again shows that it is Israel who has the overriding authority of the area. 

    12.       An entity must have a government to be considered a state.  The Encyclopedia of Public International Law states that “the government, in exercising its power, must be capable of acting independently of foreign governments.” Palestine does not possess such independence for it rules under the overarching authority of Israel.  The Declaration of Principles (DOP), which was signed by both sides, gave limited powers to the Palestinian National Authority.

    13.       In UN General Assembly Resolution 181, the United Nations called for a partition of the land into both a Jewish State and an Arabic State.  Resolution 181 is often used as evidence of Palestine’s sovereign title over the West Bank and Gaza Strip, though this remains unfounded. The United Nations tried to create a state, which goes well beyond the powers granted to it by the UN Charter.  As stated in Chapter IV, Article 10, UN resolutions are only recommendations and not binding laws. Furthermore, the UN abandoned Resolution 181 with the passing of Security Council Resolutions 2428 and 3389.

    14.       Palestine’s rejection of Resolution 181 that prevented its adoption. In the Palestine National Charter, Article 19 states that “The Partition of Palestine, which took place in 1947, and the establishment of Israel, are fundamentally invalid.” For decades Palestinians have declared the partition void, therefore rejecting sovereign title to the area. 

    15.       By signing the Declaration of Principles (DOP) in 1993, Palestine acknowledges that the sovereign title of the West Bank and Gaza Strip had not yet been resolved.  Article V of the DOP states that future permanent status negotiations shall cover the issue of borders in the future, but as of right now, Palestine does not have sovereignty over the land. The DOP and latter agreements granted certain powers to Palestine but never sovereign title over the land.

    16.       As stated by the Third U.S. Restatement of the Law, the population must be “under the control of its own government.” While Palestine has been granted many powers over its people, it is still not independent of Israeli control.

    17.       Palestine does not have sovereign title over the West Bank or the Gaza Strip.  The area was granted to Israel as early as 1917 by the British in the Balfour Declaration. In the Balfour Declaration, Britain recognized the need for a Jewish state and granted the Palestinian land for this purpose.  Later Britain turned the issue of a Jewish state over to the League of Nations, but the Balfour Declaration was upheld through the Mandate for Palestine.

    18.       The Permanent Court of International Justice, the UN Special Commission on Palestine, and the Council of the League continue to uphold the Mandate for Palestine.

    19.       Palestine/Gaza is not officially recognized as a fully independent country by the United Nations.

    20.       The Balfour Declaration, issued by the British government in 1917, did not directly address the issue of a Palestine homeland or self-determination for the people of Palestine.

    21.       The Sykes-Picot Agreement, as outlined in the correspondence between Sir Edward Grey and Paul Cambon, did not specifically guarantee a homeland or nation for Palestine. And the Sykes-Picot Agreement did not directly address the issue of a Palestine homeland or self-determination for the people of Palestine or grant the people of Palestine, or any other specific region, the right to determine their future.

    22.       The letters exchanged between Husayn and McMahon hinted at possible future arrangements and cooperation between the Arab leaders and the British, there were no explicit assurances of independence for the Arabs, particularly regarding Palestine. There was no explicit indication of an agreement or commitment by the Allies to grant the people of Palestine, or any other specific region, the right to determine their future. Therefore, it cannot be assumed from these letters alone that there was an international commitment by the Allies to grant such rights to the people of Palestine.

    23.       The refusal by the Arab population of the mandate territory to accept Resolution 181 demonstrated that they were not interested in establishing their own state if it meant allowing the existence of a Jewish state. This opposition to acknowledging the right of a Jewish state to exist still lies at the core of the conflict.

    24.       How can there be between Palestine and Israel or advance peace when none of the Arab universities has a center for teaching the thought, practice, and study of peace? When most of the publications focus on conflict rather than peacebuilding? When the educational curriculum teaches hatred, enmity, antisemitism, and death rather than celebrating life, moderation, and reconciliation? When Hamas terrorists and extremists are celebrated, and peacemakers and moderates are labelled traitors? We need to change our mindset and culture to achieve peace.

    Therefore, for Gaza or Palestine to meet the legal requirements for a state/statehood first a group i.e Hamas that is or has been designated as a terrorist organization, as a legitimate government under international law, it must “unequivocally renounce terrorism and cease all terrorist activities.” Hamas’s stated Mission is “ Murder Jews; “Obliteration” of Israel. “

    The ICC/! CJ in their decision was Ultra Vires under law. The Montevideo Convention of 1933 outlines the criteria for statehood, which include a permanent population, defined territory, government, and the capacity to enter into relations with other states. Palestine meets some of these criteria, but its full status remains contentious due to ongoing territorial disputes and the lack of a universally recognized government.

    While some countries recognize Palestine as a state and has a certain level of recognition at the UN, it does not have universal recognition or full legal status as a sovereign state in the eyes of all international law or actors.

    The panel overstepped its legal authority when it stated and based its ruling on agreeing with Khan’s assessment that the ICC has jurisdiction over the case since Palestine is a state party as per the ICC statute.

    Palestine is NOT a State or a country therefore the ruling was Ultra Vires. (beyond the legal power or authority of the person performing an action)

    Summary and Analysis

    Historical Context

    Post-Ottoman Empire: Following World War I, Palestine came under British rule along with other Arab nations.

    British Withdrawal: Unlike other Arab states that gained independence, Palestine did not.

    Balfour Declaration (1917): Britain supported the establishment of a Jewish homeland in Palestine.

    UN Involvement: The United Nations proposed a partition plan in 1947, calling for separate Israeli and Palestinian states. Israel accepted the plan and declared independence in 1948; Palestine rejected it and remains without recognized statehood.


    Criteria for Statehood (Montevideo Convention)

    Permanent Population:

    Palestine has a permanent population with a shared culture and history residing in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

    Controversy exists over whether this population is sufficiently governed independently, as per the Third U.S. Restatement of the Law.

     

    Defined Territory:

    Palestine does not have sovereign title over the West Bank or Gaza Strip.

    The Balfour Declaration and subsequent mandates supported a Jewish state, complicating Palestinian claims to the land.

    UN General Assembly Resolution 181 proposed a partition, but this was not binding and was later abandoned.

    Palestine’s land is fragmented and lacks clearly defined borders, similar to other unrecognized entities historically.

     

    Government:

    Palestine has limited self-governance but operates under Israeli authority.

    Agreements like the Declaration of Principles (DOP) and Interim Accord outline the limited powers of the Palestinian Authority, granted by Israel.

    Palestine lacks independent control over security, economy, and infrastructure.

     

    Capacity to Enter into Relations with Other States:

    Palestine cannot independently engage in foreign relations without Israeli cooperation, as outlined in the Interim Accord.

    Diplomatic limitations and the inability to form an army hinder its status as a fully independent state.

     

    De Facto vs. De Jure Statehood

    De Facto Statehood: Requires actual control over a permanent population, defined territory, government, and foreign relations.

    Palestine does not meet these criteria due to Israeli authority and lack of independent control.

    De Jure Statehood: Involves legal recognition by other states and international organizations.

    Despite recognition by some states, Palestine has not achieved broad international recognition.

    Organizations like the UN, WHO, and EU do not recognize Palestine as a state, only granting it Observer Status.

     

    Right to Self-Determination

    UN Recognition: The right to self-determination is acknowledged by the UN but does not equate to statehood.


    Autonomy vs. Statehood: Palestine has autonomy in areas like education, health, and social welfare, but this does not fulfill the criteria for statehood.