Cornell International Law Journal


Emanuel Gross


Palestinians, Partition, Terrorism, article, Sovereignty, Supreme Courts, Security Policy, Israel, Territoriality


Explores the opposing opinions of the Israeli Supreme Court & the International Court of Justice (ICJ) on the legality of the security fence constructed by Israel to prevent terrorist infiltration from the Palestinian territories. It is argued that the different conclusions of the two tribunals resulted from inadequate implementation of the legal norms by the ICJ. Difficulties arising from terminological differences between the Supreme Court's judgment & the ICJ opinion are pointed out, along with basic errors related to the ICJs conclusion that the fence was not a matter of self-defense but an issue related to the realization of political sovereignty on an occupied territory held by a state. Special attention is given to the complex challenge of achieving a fair & just balance between national security concerns & humanitarian considerations. It is concluded that the Israeli Supreme Court reached the proper conclusions when it recognized the fence as a legitimate measure of self-defense against terrorism while the ICJ relied on an insufficient factual base & a lack of balance between competing values. J. Lindroth

Included in

Law Commons