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ORIGINAL FRENCH ARTICLE: Tribune : Sarkozy, Kouchner, où serez-vous ?

by Gil Anidjar, Daniel Bensaïd, Alain Brossat, Eric Hazan, Joëlle Marelli, Jean-Luc Nancy, Michèle Sibony and Michel Warschawski

Sarkozy, Kouchner, Where will you be?

Translated Friday 20 February 2009, by Kristina Wischenkamper

The Israeli war crimes and their perpetrators must be brought to justice.

We have no doubt[1]: Tzipi Livni, Ehoud Barak, Ehoud Olmert and Gaby Ashkenazi will be tried for their crimes. It is essential for the credibility of international law. It is essential for our humanity which has been touched by these crimes. Nicolas Sarkozy, Bernard Kouchner, where will you be the day that they find themselves at the Hague, before the international criminal tribunal?

Nicolas Sarkozy and Bernard Kouchner, you have made yourselves guilty of having wrenched the lifting of the Association Agreement from the European Union even though the Israeli blockade had been starving and exhausting Gaza for the last 18 months and that the state of Israel had never fulfilled the conditions of the initial agreement, notably respecting human rights. How could Israel not have interpreted this decision as a go-ahead for all their subsequent actions?

Nicolas Sarkozy you have rendered yourself guilty of complicity in war crimes. By your vain comings and goings between Cairo, Damascus and Jerusalem, you have given Israel the time to continue its bombardment of Gaza’s civilian population. Let’s be clear. You hosted Tzipi Livni on an official visit to France in the offensive’s first days and took up the Israeli state’s lies about its “right to self-defence” after breaking the truce attributed to Hamas. You cannot possibly NOT be aware that the conditions of this truce had never been respected by Israel, since they meant lifting the blockade and opening the borders of this overpopulated and battered territory.

At present you talk about an alliance between France, Germany and the UK to police for Israel’s benefit so as to “prevent the smuggling of arms into Gaza." It would be more appropriate to prevent Israel from continuing to acquire arms, the use of which we have seen.

The only honourable action would be recalling the French Ambassador in Israel and applying the sanctions allowed for under international law to punish war crimes.

The criminals must be brought to the Hague. The Palestinian people, and with them numerous Israelis who have not lost all sense of propriety, are asking us to help them achieve justice. Let’s not leave them without a response.


[1] By Gil Anidjar, religious historian, Daniel Bensaïd, philosopher, Alain Brossat, philosopher, Eric Hazan, publisher and writer, Joëlle Marelli, translator, Jean-Luc Nancy, philosopher, Michèle Sibony, teacher, ex-president of the UJFP [Jewish French Union for Peace], Michel Warschawski, journalist.

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