The Definition of Genocide
Photos by C.A. Matthews
n.The systematic and widespread extermination or attempted extermination of a national, racial, religious, or ethnic group.
n.The systematic killing of a racial or cultural group.
n.The systematic killing of substantial numbers of people on the basis of ethnicity, religion, political opinion, social status, or other particularity.The New American Dictionary, 5th EditionWhat is Genocide?
- Killing members of the group
- Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group
- Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part
- Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group
- Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group
There are a number of other serious, violent crimes that do not fall under the specific definition of genocide. They include crimes against humanity, war crimes, ethnic cleansing, and mass killing.
--United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
The definition of the crime of genocide as contained in Article II of the Genocide Convention was the result of a negotiating process and reflects the compromise reached among United Nations Member States in 1948 at the time of drafting the Convention. Genocide is defined in the same terms as in the Genocide Convention in the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (Article 6), as well as in the statutes of other international and hybrid jurisdictions. Many States have also criminalized genocide in their domestic law; others have yet to do so.
The United Nations (UN) Defines genocide as any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such:
- Killing members of the group;
- Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group;
- Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part;
- Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group;
- Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group.
The word “genocide” was first coined by Polish lawyer Raphäel Lemkin in 1944 in his book Axis Rule in Occupied Europe. It consists of the Greek prefix genos, meaning race or tribe, and the Latin suffix cide, meaning killing. Lemkin developed the term partly in response to the Nazi policies of systematic murder of Jewish people during the Holocaust, but also in response to previous instances in history of targeted actions aimed at the destruction of particular groups of people. Later on, Raphäel Lemkin led the campaign to have genocide recognised and codified as an international crime.
Are you starting to get the picture?
Homes bombed, skyscrapers crumbled, schools targeted, children killed... Even the Covid-19 response has been disabled in Gaza by Israeli airstrikes. Do these violent actions not meet the definition of genocide?
How do you respond to those who commit genocide? Do you continue to sell them weaponry and turn a blind eye? The US does. We give Israel almost $4 billion a year, and this is what they do with that money--they buy more weapons to kill their neighbors.
It needs to stop. NOW.
Do what these brave protesters did recently--take it to the streets. Get your signs and get loud. Flood your Congressmember's email and mail box with correspondence stating in no uncertain terms that the US must end its support of Israeli terrorism targeted at the Palestinian people. Killing civilians based on their ethnicity and/or religion is genocide.
Don't ignore what is happening. It could happen to you and yours someday. And then who will be left to speak up for you?
Why hasn't Joe Biden and democrats called on Israel to stop using U.S. weapons to commit human rights abuses which is a violation of U.S. law? The answer. Both the U.S. and Israel are racist settler states that don't recognize the common humanity of non-Europeans.— Ajamu Baraka (@ajamubaraka) May 13, 2021
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From Roots Action:
Congresswoman Betty McCollum from Minnesota has introduced a bill (H.R.2590) "to
promote and protect the human rights of Palestinians living under
Israeli military occupation and to ensure that United States taxpayer
funds are not used by the Government of Israel to support the military
detention of Palestinian children, the unlawful seizure, appropriation,
and destruction of Palestinian property and forcible transfer of
civilians in the West Bank, or further annexation of Palestinian land in
violation of international law."