Illustration by Paresh Nath
September 28, 2009
By Dr. Elias Akleh
Goldstone's report, incriminating Israel for war crimes, has been optimistically received by many as a sign of dismantling Israel's impunity from legal actions for her war crimes and violations of international laws. Yet, at the same time, it is full of political booby-traps that Israel could use to indemnify herself and turn the blame onto Palestinians. Besides equating the Palestinian victims with the genocidal Israeli criminals, and denying them of their moral humanitarian right of self-defense, the report also grossly ignores historical events, distorts reality, and legalizes Israeli occupation of Palestine.
Let us remember, here, that the UN has illegally and immorally created and sponsored the terrorist state of Israel in Palestine; the heart of the Arab World. One should understand that the UN, with all its organizations, was established mainly by WWII victorious Western countries as a tool to serve their interests and to expand their authority on the expense of other weaker and poorer countries.
It is so obvious that the UN has no interest in solving the Israeli/Arab conflict in any way. Since its establishment in 1948 Israel has perpetrated a pre-meditated genocide against Palestinians, uprooted the whole population from their country and driven them into refugee camps into the desert, wiped Palestine off the map and is building the rogue terrorist state of Israel in its place.
In this process, during the last 61 years, Israel had committed many war crimes, violated all international laws and all humanitarian laws, had broken hundreds of UN resolutions, and even murdered UN personnel and destroyed its facilities. Yet the UN did not lift one finger against Israeli crimes, and did not send its troops to protect Palestinians the way it sent its troops into old Yugoslavia (Serbia, Bosnia-Hercegovina & Slovenia), Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan, Somalia, and Sudan.
The UN's disregard of Palestinian life was reflected in the visit of the Secretary General of the UN; Ban Ki-moon, to Gaza last January to inspect only the damage Israel inflicted on UN buildings, and did not take even one single look at the human sufferings of Palestinians.
In the few incidents the UN was pressured to deal with the Israeli/Arab conflict (Israeli occupation of Palestine) it had sent investigating committees usually led by a pro-Zionist or a Zionist Jewish officials. The latest such officials was the Zionist Jewish Judge Richard Goldstone (Goldstein). His daughter Nicole describes him as a "Zionist who loves Israel" (JPost).
When the UN Human Rights Council asked Goldstone to chair the mission with the mandate to investigate Israel's crime during its onslaught on Gaza last December 2008, Goldstone, as a good Zionist, refused the offer unless the mandate is modified to include "crimes on all sides"; a clear pre-biased assumption that Palestinians had also committed war crimes rather than defending themselves.
Goldstone is a well known official with a long international judicial history. He also serves on the Board of Directors of several nonprofit organizations, has affiliations with famous American universities (Harvard, Fordham, and New York University Schools of Law), and he is a trustee in the board of directors of the Hebrew University in Jerusalem.
With the many clear evidences of Israeli war crimes in Gaza broadcasted by all televised media (except American media), and with the Israeli objections against such investigation calling it pre-biased, one could not but raise the question why would a well-known Zionist Jewish supporter of Israel accept such a mission knowing very well that his reputation would be attacked and smeared by all Zionists and Jewish organizations the same way they did to Jimmy Carter for just criticizing Israel?
Goldstone, like many other misguided Zionist Jews with blind loyalty to Israel, who sacrificed everything they had, even their own lives, for the sake of Israel (God's chosen people) might have thought that he could reduce the damage to Israel's reputation, and use his well-known reputation and judicial expertise to induce, in the report, some legal loopholes to divide the blame, and to give Israel a chance to blame Palestinians, or even some "few rotten apples" in the "most moral" Israeli army, and to justify her massacres in Gaza as some type of self-defense, although disproportionate. And that he did.
Goldstone's report aimed to annul the many previous investigative reports done by Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, and many other Israeli and international human rights organizations. Such reports incriminated only Israel. Goldstone's report sought to incriminate both parties.
Goldstone's investigations were launched with the false perspective that there was a war between Israel and the Palestinian Gaza Authority, and his report was thus restricted in the language of violations of the international laws of war. It equated the poor, bankrupt, besieged, hungry, thirsty, unjustly ignored and persecuted by the international political system, and unarmed Gaza Authority with limited security forces plus the few hundreds lightly armed, barely trained militia cadres of the resistance groups on one side, with the well trained, well armed with the most technologically advanced (American) weapons, well supported, and well financed Israeli army on the other side.
The report states that "The Israeli armed forces are, in technological terms, among the most advanced in the world", "… have an elaborate legal advice and training system in place … possess very advanced hardware and a market leader in production of the most advanced pieces of military technology available, including UAVs … have a very significant capacity for precision strikes…"
It was not war that happened in Gaza. It was a pre-meditated Israeli onslaught against all kinds of lives in Gaza; humans, animals, and plants. It was genocide; a burning holocaust with nuclear (DU) weapons producing 5,000 degrees of burning heat equals to the heat of the sun according to Dy Williams; the British weapons expert on Al-Jazeera. It was an immediate and long term destruction of life, and contamination and destruction of mother earth. The report stated in this regard:
"Taking into account the ability to plan, the means to execute plans with the most developed technology available (weapons), and statements by the Israeli military that almost no errors occurred, the Mission finds that the incidents and patterns of events (genocide, holocaust) considered in the report are the result of deliberate planning and policy decisions."
Although Goldstone's mission was to investigate Israeli war crimes his mission chose not to investigate the weapons of the crime. His report states: "This chapter does not intend to present a comprehensive analysis of all the aspects raised on the kinds of weaponry used during the military operations. It is rather a summary of the Missions's views".
While the Mission did not exclude the use of nuclear DU bombs by Israel "the Mission decided not to investigate the matter further". The report justified Israel's use of white phosphorous, flechette missiles, and DIME munitions as "not prohibited under international law".
While sidelining the holocaustal Israeli weapons Goldstone's report found the time and the expertise to describe in details and in numbers the types of rudimentary home-made missiles the Palestinians fired at the Israeli colonies.
Although Goldstone's report accused the Israeli army of bombing civilian infrastructure; homes, schools, hospitals, mosques, and UN facilities, it did not "…discount the possibility that Palestinian armed groups were active in the vicinity … launched attacks close to civilian protected buildings, unnecessarily exposed civilian population of Gaza to danger". The report stated that Israel showed concern about civilian lives by sending warnings before bombing the area; the mission "accepts that Israel dropped leaflets, made phone calls, left recorded messages and dropped smaller explosives on roofs as stated by the Israeli Government."
Goldstone's report gave Israelis the best justification of their attack (holocaust) on Gaza when it considered Palestinian launching missiles at Israeli communities as terror attacks. "The Mission finds that there is significant evidence to suggest that one of the primary purposes of the rocket and mortar attacks is to spread terror amongst the Israeli civilian population, a violation of international law". It explains further the economical and social disruptions and the psychological trauma suffered by populations in the Israeli communities of Sderot, Netivot, Beer Sheba and others by those missiles.
Goldstone here ignores historical events and distorts the facts by switching them to the opposite direction. He ignored the fact that Israel had occupied Palestine since 1948, and that the southern Israeli communities such as Sderot, Netivot, Ashdod, and others are not Israeli towns, rather are Zionist colonies built on stolen Palestinian land. He also ignored the fact that these colonizers in these communities are usually armed and hostile against neighboring Palestinian town, many of them are either on military active duty or on military reserve.
These Zionist occupiers are like an enemy, who occupy your own house, imprison you and your family in one room and deny you all means of existence. Thus it becomes your duty and your human obligation to defend yourself and your family. The mere existence of such Zionist colonies on occupied Palestine is an act or war. The Israeli wall surrounding Gaza Strip and the military siege are acts of genocide that break all humanitarian and all international laws. Genocide is not only the use of weapon to murder people; it is also depriving them from all means of living.
Goldstone faults Palestinians for resisting Israeli aggression from within Palestinian civilian areas, yet he neglects to mention that Israel has a history of attacking civilian areas, and thus would face resistance from within these civilian areas.
In an attempt to portray Palestinians as violent people, even against their own citizens, Goldstone faults the intra-Palestinian conflict between Ramallah's authority, dominated by rogue small faction of Fatah, and Gaza's authority, dominated mainly by Hamas faction. What he ignored is the fact that such conflict was planned, orchestrated, and fed by previous American Bush administration, as reported by Vanity Fair, in order to topple down the democratically elected Hamas government.
To maintain credibility Goldstone's report could not but criticize the obvious blatant Israeli crimes witnessed by the whole world. Yet it did not spare any opportunity to fault Palestinians themselves, deny them the right of self-defense, and even call them violent and terrorists. For defending their lives and the lives of their children the report is accusing the victims (the Palestinians) of the crime inflicted on them by the criminals (occupying Zionist Israelis), who claim to protect the lives of their own children. Israel's rejection and the pro-Zionists' harsh criticism of the report meant only to divert the attention away from these facts.
In conclusion Goldstone's mission proposes the following major recommendations, among others: that the UNHRC (United Nations Human Rights Council) brings the report to the UN Security Council in order to require both parties to launch appropriate independent investigations, establish an independent committee of experts to monitor such investigation, and refer the situation in Gaza to the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court.
The report also recommends that Israel ceases border closure and access to sea, and pays reparations into a special fund to compensate Palestinians, although the Mission views "the current constitutional structure and legislation in Israel leaves very limited room, if any, for Palestinians to seek compensation". Therefore the report urges international aid providers to step up financial and technical assistance for organizations providing aid to Palestinian (paying for Israel's crimes).
The report recommends the Palestinian armed groups renounce attacks on Israeli civilians (indirectly calling their self-defense terror), yet it did not recommend Israel to do the same.
Finally, knowing the UN's ineffective history in dealing with the Israeli occupation of Palestine, one wonders whether the Security Council would respond seriously, this time, to the report, given the fact that the powerful members of the Council are now busy with what they consider the Iranian nuclear threat.
* Dr. Elias Akleh is an Arab writer from a Palestinian descent born in the town of Beit Jala. His family was first evicted from Haifa after the "Nakba" of 1948, then from Beit Jala after the "Nakseh" of 1967. He lives now in the US, and publishes his articles on the web in both English and Arabic.