Whose 'Conduct Unbecoming'?

21 Pages Posted: 24 Mar 2009

See all articles by Orna Ben-Naftali

Orna Ben-Naftali

T; The Emile Zola Chair for Human Rights

Noam Zamir

City University of Hong Kong (CityUHK) - School of Law

Date Written: March 22, 2009


The article focuses on the decision of the Israeli Military Advocate General (MAG) to charge an officer who ordered the shooting of a handcuffed, blind-folded Palestinian demonstrator, and the soldier who executed the order, for 'conduct unbecoming'. It advances the following propositions: (i) from the perspective of the applicable international law, the facts of the case qualify the shooting as a war crime; (ii) said decision of the Israeli MAG is indicative of a policy of tolerance towards violence against non-violent civilian protest against the construction of the Separation Wall; (iii) the implication of such policy is twofold: first, it might transform 'conduct unbecoming' - which as a matter of law is a war crime - into a crime against humanity; second, it may well be construed as an invitation to the international community to intervene through the exercise of universal jurisdiction.

Keywords: International Law, Construction of the Separation Wall, War crime, Conduct unbecoming, Crime against humanity, Occupation; Occupied Palestinian Territory; Responsibility of Legal Advisors

JEL Classification: K33

Suggested Citation

Ben-Naftali, Orna and Zamir, Noam, Whose 'Conduct Unbecoming'? (March 22, 2009). Journal of International Criminal Justice, 2009 , Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1366775

Orna Ben-Naftali (Contact Author)

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Noam Zamir

City University of Hong Kong (CityUHK) - School of Law ( email )

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Hong Kong

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