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LA Times Runs Pro-Gaza-Blockade OpEd and Omits that Author Is Ret. IDF Colonel
In it's July 1st edition, the LA Times is running an OpEd piece by Amos N. Guiora titled, "Gaza Flotilla: Israel's Gaza sea blockade is an act of self-defense." In the bio at the bottom of the piece, the author is identified only as "a professor of law at the University of Utah's S.J. Quinney College of Law, is the author of 'Freedom from Religion: Rights and National Security.'" Glaringly missing from the description of Guiora is the fact that he is a retired Israeli Defense Forces Lieutenant Colonel who believes that extrajudicial assassinations of Palestinians is within Israel's rights under international law. The "oversight" is akin to the LA Times publishing a pro-torture OpEd by John Yoo and identifying him simply as a University of California professor of law. If the Times chooses to correct this oversight online or in future print editions, or if they choose to stand by this deceit, remains to be seen.
Check out Amos Guiora's credentials, clips taken from his Hasbara credentials, wikipedia, facebook, and articles he has written.
Who really is Amos Guiora? Teaches law in Utah? That's his claim to fame? No, that's his OpEd cover. Unequivocal legalistic advocacy for Israel First is his job.
Guiora is an Israeli Defense Forces Lt. Col. charged with educating -- and devising legal defenses for -- soldiers of a foreign country (not the USA), whom he believes have the right to kill unarmed civilians.
Guiora is no disinterested American, but a dual-passport wielding professional killer for Israel. This is a fact puzzlingly missing from his bio in the OpEd the LA Times which so generously afforded him space for his foreign state's propaganda without having fact-checked his professional identity. Conflict of interest seems to have escaped the editors of LAT.
Even a perfunctory check of Guiora's basic bio at UU reveals his long military career:
He served for 19 years in the Israel Defense Forces as Lieutenant Colonel (retired), and held a number of senior command positions, including Commander of the IDF School of Military Law, Legal Advisor to the IDF Home Front Command and Legal Advisor to the Gaza Strip.
In the July 1st OpEd, Guiora slyly renames Israel's illegal "collective punishment" blockade of Gaza a "high-seas blockade" -- a devious distortion of the blockade's legal status, as per most informed expert opinion, which U.S. policy has enabled Israel to thumb its nose at.
It becomes clear from a casual perusal of his writings and career focus -- providing legalese to cover for Israeli war crimes and propagandizing in the United States so that an ill-informed populace will keep automatically shoveling our billions of spare taxes into Israel's illegal military colonization of Palestinian lands.
Note this from Wikipedia:
Crime against peace
A crime against peace, in international law, refers to "planning, preparation, initiation, or waging of wars of aggression, or a war in violation of international treaties, agreements or assurances, or participation in a common plan or conspiracy for the accomplishment of any of the foregoing". This definition of crimes against peace was first incorporated into the Nuremberg Principles and later included in the United Nations Charter. This definition would play a part in defining aggression as a crime against peace.
An important exception to the foregoing are defensive military actions taken under Article 51 of the UN Charter. Such defensive actions are subject to immediate Security Council review, but do not require UN permission to be legal within international law.
Guiora is a very dangerous man to the humanitarians on the Freedom Flotilla. Here is what he has said elsewhere:
Events Sponsored by Hasbara Fellowships and/or Organized by Hasbara Fellows
Global Perpectives on Terrorism with Amos Guiora
Date: Nov 25, 2010 13:00:00
Calgary Hillel is hosting Amos Guiora who will be speaking on Global Perspectives on Terrorism.
Amos N. Guiora is an Israeli-American professor of law at the SJ Quinney College of Law, University of Utah.
He is a widely cited expert on legal aspects of counter-terrorism, terror financing, international law and morality in armed conflict. He served in the IDF Judge Advocate General Corps. He was commander of the IDF school of military law, judge advocate for the navy and home front command, and the legal advisor to the Gaza Strip.
Guiora's views on extrajudicial assassinations -- this is both on his wikipedia page and on his facebook self-promotion.
Views on targeted killing
As to his views on targeted killing, Guiora said: "targeted killing absolutely is the implementation, the manifestation of aggressive, preemptive self-defense based on Article 51 of the United Nations Charter". Inasmuch as going into Gaza, for example, to arrest a notorious terrorist is "a highly dangerous military operation that would put more IDF soldiers in harm's way", he said, "International law does not require Israel to carry out high-risk arrests."
IN OTHER WORDS, HE ARGUES EXTRAJUDICIAL KILLING IS LEGAL, DESPITE ITS UNIVERSALLY RECOGNIZED STATUS AS ILLEGAL SINCE IT INVOLVES PREMEDITATED KILLING OF PERSONS WITHOUT ANY COURT ORDER CONFIRMING REASONABLE SUSPICION OR RECOGNIZING THE RIGHT OF HABEAS CORPUS, a 700-year-old rule-of-law custom. IT SHOULD SURPRISE NO ONE, THEREFORE, THAT GUIORA CALLS HIMSELF AN "EXPERT ON DRONE WARFARE" ON HIS FACEBOOK PAGE.
Also on his facebook, this: "He explained to the Los Angeles Times that Israel has dropped coercive techniques, and now spends months interviewing terrorism suspects and convicts, establishing a rapport with them and then getting them to open up."
One wonders if he would like to "open up" Freedom Flotilla activists in as non-coercive a manner as he claims to enjoy with "terror suspects", "establishing a rapport with them and then getting them to open up."
By implying they are terrorists threatening Israel's security, by referring to the flotilla organizers as "the enemy" of Israel, Mr. Guiora is explicitly telling his subordinate soldiers they are fair game to kill in order to "protect Israel" (soldiers prime directive as obedient executors of superiors' orders). In his words, "they have been trained to kill . . . to protect each other" and "fulfill their mission."
In his article, "Teaching Morality in Armed Conflict," Guiora writes, "There are, however, at least two overriding principles that must be addressed: the soldier must be taught how to identify the enemy and simultaneously distinguish combatants from noncombatants."
Soldiers' job is done in Guiora's editorial, which ID's the enemy for them, and makes perfectly clear there is NO distinction between combatants and noncombatants with regard to this flotilla.
He also writes: "The military culture, like any other professional culture, has its own sets of rules and codes. What makes the military culture different, however, is that it teaches, trains, encourages, and rewards the killing of other human beings..... Combat soldiers must be closer than brothers; they are brothers-in-arms ready, willing, and able to kill and be killed in order to protect each other so as to guarantee mission accomplishment. It is truly a concept of the "greater good."
Of interest in terms of quality soldiers being desired in the IDF: "After the soldier has finished answering the questions, which are in the form of a true-false exam, the correct response appears on the screen, and the accompanying voice-over explains the rationale behind it. There is no final score and passing the exam has not been a criterion for course completion." In other words, the teaching and testing of IDF new recruits doesn't have to be effective for the men to be suited and armed for business.
U.S. eyes Israeli software as training tool for forces in Iraq 29 Sept 2003, Christian Science Monitor
Guiora is on the Speakers Bureau of SPME, widely recognized as a major propaganda arm of U.S.-based Israel Firsters.
Cowboys put notches on their belts for the people they killed. Guiora seems to want to put notches on his teakwood desk for the boats he seizes.
"He served in the Israel Defense Forces Judge Advocate General's Corps (Lt. Col. Ret.). He was Commander of the IDF School of Military Law, Judge Advocate for the Navy and Home Front Command, and the Legal Advisor to the Gaza Strip. Guiora was involved in the capture of the Karine A, a PLO weapons ship."
You can read the actual disingenuous OpEd if you so choose:
Better yet, you can contact the LA Times and demand they publish a "correction" to fix the glaring omission about the true identity of Amos N. Guiora: