The Goldstone Report although labelled as biased by Israel and Israel supporters is yet to be greeted by a comment aimed directly at its comments in the 500 or so pages it is made up of. The Report as far as Israel is concerned expresses opinions that Israelis just cannot get around with assertions of bias.
“The UN Human Rights Council’s Goldstone report called Israel’s military assault on Gaza “a deliberately disproportionate attack designed to punish, humiliate and terrorize a civilian population, radically diminish its local economic capacity both to work and to provide for itself, and to force upon it an ever-increasing sense of dependency and vulnerability”.
To add insult to injury the retort from the Israeli Ambassador makes nonsense look attractive. Gabriela Shalev, the Israeli ambassador to the United Nations, quickly rejected the report, saying it failed to take into account that the operation was in “self-defence”. There is a very good article at the Al Jazeera UK site by PJ Balles a retired US Professor who has lived in the middle East for many years.
You can see the article at link. It makes many good points like those above. During this campaign of ‘self defence what happened was, “According to Amnesty International, some 1,400 Palestinians were killed in the 22-day Israeli offensive between 27 December 2008 and 17 January 2009, which agrees broadly with Palestinian figures. More than 900 of these were civilians, including 300 children and 115 women.”
“On the Israeli side 13 died in this conflict, three of them civilians. In total in the past eight years, 20 people in Israel have died from rocket and mortar attacks launched by militants in Gaza.” Anne Bayefsky, a senior fellow at the Hudson Institute writes, in The Jerusalem Post that the charges of human rights violations are just more of “that same old bash-Israel agenda”.
However, in the article there are some quite specific articles directed to these assertions of Israel bashing and self defence. The figures alone suggest that the bashing of the Palestinians is infinitely greater than anything Ms. Bavsfsky is concerned about.
“Abdul Rahim Abu Halima, 14, was killed when a white phosphorous artillery shell hit his home on 4 January. He died with two of his brothers, Zayed, eight, and Hamza, six, his sister Shahed, who was 15 months old, and their father Saadallah, 45.
A boy from the Abu Halima family lost his father, three brothers and an infant sister in a horrific fire after an Israeli phosphorus shell hit the house.
Muhammad Balousha, aged two, waited constantly by the door listening carefully to the sounds around him, hoping to recognize the sounds of his five sisters coming home. He does not know that, when on that one night they said goodnight and went to sleep, it was forever.
Neurosurgeon Dr Ahmed Yaha catalogued horrific injuries such as babies being shot in the head, babies with broken spines due to being thrown by shell blasts. People burned to the bone by white phosphorus, nail bombs causing brutal injuries and a new phenomena, micro-pellets, that leave no entry wound but cause fatal internal injuries.
The extent of the carnage directed toward children makes total nonsense of any claims to self defence and surely strengthens the claim that the exclusion of the media was only to allow the Israelis to get on with the job at hand and ruthlessly kill, maim and devastate whoever was in their way for any reason. Of course they will never admit to even one unlawful act or if such a thing is possible one ‘unnecessary killing.’
But if you try to direct attention to their senseless acts of wanton violence, revenge and killing you are immediately labelled an anti Semitic person or a holocaust denier. Just a handy label to give people if they express a contrary view. No different to being called a communist or insurgent or terrorist if you dare speak against imperialist policies anywhere in the world.
The Israelis find it difficult to accept any wrongdoing perhaps for a simple reason like Israeli Chief of Staff Gabi Ashkenazi who has difficulty believing the soldiers’ testimonies that they intentionally harmed Palestinian civilians, because the Israel Defence Force is a “moral army”.
History is full of moral armies who have raped, tortured and killed their way around the world. The Europeans to paraphrase Chomsky did it for hundreds of years until they realised that the next war would be the last. The US economy feeds of the death and destruction of people all around the world, ensuring the arms manufacturers a ready made market for the obscene weapons of mass destruction the US has at its disposal and never hesitates to use.
Apart from the ‘big one’ of course. They did that once and even though it was totally unnecessary still claim that is why they ‘won’. Victory at that price is not worth fighting for or having. Unless you happen to be in the arms, chemical, banking or finance businesses then as long as you win it all becomes necessary to maintain national security.