Except it’s Not Genocide

Words matter and the law matters. Israel is not guilty of genocide, but Hamas is.

Adeline Dimond
14 min readMay 13, 2024

In 1946, the U.N. General Assembly passed a resolution declaring genocide to be a crime under international law. In 1948 the U.N. ratified the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide (Genocide Convention), and in 1951 it went into force.

The United States became a party to the Genocide Convention in 1988 but with some reservations. By 2004, the United States was one of 135 countries that were parties to the Genocide Convention, which recognizes that “genocide, whether committed in time of peace or in time of war, is a crime under international law which they undertake to prevent and punish.”

Article II of the Genocide Convention defines genocide as the following:

[A]ny of the following acts committed with the intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical [not a typo, it says “ethnical” not “ethnic”], racial or religious group as such: (a) killing members of the group; (b) causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group; (c) deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part; (d) imposing measures intending to prevent births within the group; (e) forcibly…