December 16, 2018

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Terror suspect found innocent by Israeli military court? I thought that never happens!

Human Rights Watch wrote in June:

Israeli authorities have incarcerated hundreds of thousands of Palestinians since 1967, the majority after trials in military courts, which have a near-100 percent conviction rate. 

The “hundreds of thousands” claim is unsourced, in keeping with HRW’s careful adherence to anti-Israel lies. I’ve looked at the statistics on how many Palestinians have been incarcerated and the numbers are much, much lower than the 800,000 that Palestinian NGOs like to spout, and that HRW believes without question.

What about the near 100% conviction rate? That comes from a Haaretz article from 2011, and that is the only source ever cited for that claim.

Have things changed since then? No one has bothered to check. But the figure is quoted, over and over again, as if it is current.  Which shows again how much HRW cares about the facts.

CAMERA has looked at this statistic, and showed that in the US in the same year:

the US military’s “conviction rate for all crimes is more than 90 percent.” This rate includes conviction for all crimes including sexual assaults; the sexual assault conviction rate was only 27%, bringing the total conviction rate down.
In US federal civilian criminal courts, the conviction rate is slightly higher. For fiscal year 2015, the most recent year for which data is available, 94.2 percent of criminal defendants in federal district courts either pleaded guilty or were convicted, and 91.8 percent of criminal defendants in federal magistrate courts either pleaded guilty or were convicted.

CAMERA gives various reasons for the high conviction rate, mostly that prosecutors in Israel have huge incentives to only bring cases that have enough evidence to result in conviction.

So it is interesting to see a seeming exception that was just reported:

A Palestinian prisoner was exonerated by an Israeli court on Thursday from charges against him alleging that he carried out a bombing at an Israeli hotel in 2015.

According to Lawyer Yousif Nasasra of the Palestinian Committee of Prisoner’s Affairs, Jerusalemite Khalil al-Nimr, 23, was detained on November 30th, 2015 over accusations of carrying out an explosion that targeted the Rio Hotel in the southern Israeli city of Eilat.
According to a statement from Nasasra, al-Nimr was proved innocent on Thursday after several court sessions.

How can this be if the courts are stacked against Palestinians? Why would anyone be exoneratred?

I guess it is court-washing.

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