South African Ronnie Kasrils, a leading international campaigner for human rights and humanitarian law, has issued an important statement of his request for charges to be filed against Israelis suspected of international crimes [PDF] for their participation in the planning and execution of Operation Cast Lead (Zionism’s war on the Gaza Strip).
For those who might not know who Kasrils is, here’s a brief background:
- His grandparents were Jewish immigrants from Latvia and Lithuania who fled from Tsarist pogroms at the end of the19th century.
- The Sharpeville massacre of black South Africans turned him against white-ruled South Africa’s apartheid system and he joined the ANC in 1960.
- He came to international prominence after writing in 2000 A Declaration of Conscience by South Africans of Jewish Descent who were against Israeli policies in the occupied territories.
- From April 2004 to September 2008, he served as minister for his country’s intelligence services.
- Kasrils probably knows more than most about White-ruled South Africa’s role in assisting the development of Israel’s nuclear weapons programme.