Rule of Law de jure and/or de facto?: Shamgar and the International Law of Belligerent Occupation
Strengthening Human Rights Protections in Geneva, Israel, the West Bank and Beyond (David, Ronen, Shany and Weiler eds., CUP, Forthcoming in 2021)
19 Pages Posted: 21 Sep 2020 Last revised: 22 Sep 2020
Date Written: April 11, 2020
The Chapter revisits some of the main contributions by Meir Shamgar to the development of Israeli jurisprudence relating to the interpretation and application of international law in general, and the law of belligerent occupation in particular. Among the topics discussed are Shamgar’s contribution to subjecting Israel’s activities in the West Bank and Gaza Strip to rule of law concepts, his nuanced position on the application of the Fourth Geneva Convention to the occupied territories, his support for the flexible interpretation of the law of belligerent occupation and the balancing act he performed between Israeli security interests and the needs and interests of the local Palestinian inhabitants. While this Chapter focuses on the work of one exceptional Israeli jurist, broader insights can be drawn from the discussion below about Israel’s approach to international law and to the law applicable to the occupied territories, and perhaps also about the relationship between international law as a constraint upon political power and as a cloak for the exercise of such power.
Keywords: Belligerent Occupation, Israeli Supreme Court, West Bank, Meir Shamgar. Fourth Geneva Convention, Hague Reguations 1907
JEL Classification: K33
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation