by Felix Quigley

February 3, 2010

What was the Gaza war all about?

Israel had been hit by Hamas rockets and shells for all of 8 years and Israel had decided NOT TO RESPOND which is one of the most foolish things to do.

The very first rocket attack on to Israeli soil by these antisemites should have been answered by massive force and that massive force should be supported by everybody in the world WHO IS NOT AN ANTISEMITE.

Got that! After the Holocaust Israel in defending itself from antisemites must be supported by everybody who is not actually an antisemite.

That is the position of 4international. It is not (sorry to say) the position of the Israeli elitist and ruling class politicians who rule over Israel and who have ruled over it since 1948.

The war with theser antisemites in Gaza was certainly fought completely the wrong way.

These Israeli ruling class politicians are more worried about what the world thinks than about the defence of their own soldiers and their own Jews.

So the utter stupidity! They engaged in an extensive programme of telephone calls to Arabs telling them that it Israel was going to attack certain places.

Has any war ever been fought in such a way?

You cannot ever fight a war like this. Part of the winning of any war is to inflict huge damage on the substructure of the state of the enemy. That means that the enemy is also the civilian population which is the supporters of the enemy, and therefore IS the enemy.

In this case this is without any little doubt at all because these very Arabs of Gaza HAD ELECTED THESE VICIOUS ANTISEMITES OF HAMAS.

So then why the telephone calls? It is too absurd for words.

The whole of the “international law” talk is just pure and utter bullshit, and a moment thinking about how the imperialists fought all of their wars down through the centuries proves this.

The only correct conduct in any war is to use all means that are necessary to win it.

The same idea is contained in this quote from Leon Trotsky

“There are no absolute rules of conduct, either in peace or war. Everything depends on circumstances.”

How simple! How true!

It is this one sentence which cuts the ground from under the antisemites who attack Israel over Gaza, especially that antisemitic report led by Goldstone

Goldstone paid not one little bit of heed to the circumstances under which Israel had to fight that war.

1. Israel was fighting against a Fascist enemy which was not dressed in martial combat. So the rules of war do not apply anyway

2. How to stop Hamas from firing rockets into Israel? If verbal appeal would not work?

So now on to the way in which Israel fought the war.

The first step must have been the wholesale bombing of all of Gaza.

Israel had pulled every last Jew out of Gaza, and well meaning Jews had donated special hot houses for growing vegetables and fruit for the international market, and generally wished for peace thus.

How stupid that really was! They got war of course.

Then having bombed the bejasus out of Gaza Israel should have moved overwhelming troops in, caught these Hamas fascist Antisemitic bastards, and strung them up without ceremony.

Then the Arabs there who elected these antisemites should have been shipped to Saudi Arabia. And Israel should have proclaimed to the world that never again would they trust Arabs to be peaceful.

Now back to Trotsky! We as Trotskyists say that if this stupid Israeli ruling class is not removed from power in a revolution they will destroy the Jews.

Now we print a report created by the quite wonderful DEBKAfile over just how treasonable this Israeli ruling capitalist class and elitists really are. I leave you to digest this report slowly, but if you are Jewish do try to stem your anger.

[Begin Debka report on the treasonous conduct of the Israeli elitists here]

Phosphorus flares in Gaza War
(Phosphorous is used to light up, and to confuse the enemy. It is NOT against any laws of war, it is an accepted part of modern warfare, and anyway that does not matter. In war the only rule is to defeat the enemy)

The two explosives-packed containers washed up on Ashkelon and Ashdod beaches Monday, Feb. 1, did not blow up – unlike Israel’s top military echelons, who were stunned by the exposure of two top Israeli field commanders in the account Jerusalem handed the UN secretary in defense of Israel’s military against the one-sided Gaza war crimes allegations brought by Richard Goldstone. 

(Jerusalem handed this report to the UN, that means the rotten Israeli leaders handed the report to these antisemites in the UN, that means Netanyahu. For that alone he should be kicked out)


The 46-page account named Brig. Gen. Eyal Eisenberg, chief of the Gaza division, and Col. Ilan Malka, former Givati commander, as having been disciplined for exceeding orders and hazarding lives by letting an UNWRA facility come under artillery fire during the three-week campaign against the Hamas more than a year ago. The IDF emphatically denied that phosphorus shells were used.

(Good Lord, these bastards in the Israeli elite and Government, these snitches for the UN, have betrayed their own brave and devoted soldiers. Kick Netanyahu out for this!)
debkafile’s military sources report that senior military officials, including the IDF spokesman, made a supreme effort to “kill” the story after it reached the media, but failed to cool the flames.
One unnamed general remarked: “The Jerusalem bureaucrat who named the two officers in the Israeli account to UN secretary general Ban Ki-moon threw them to the wolves.” Another said: “How can we be expected to lead our men in future battles when we don’t know what awaits us during or even after the fighting is over?”
” We are used to state inquiry commissions and expect to face the music over possible derelictions from the IDF’s stringent rules of engagement,” said another. “But how can we fight with the international war crimes tribunal hanging over our heads, knowing it may be as loaded against us as Goldstone or other UN institutions?”

The bureaucrat who named the two officers is at the heart of the storm.  His purpose was to prove that months before Goldstone came on the scene, the IDF had conducted a thorough and impartial inquiry into every claim of misconduct during the three-week Gaza campaign. Although the campaign was fought against terrorists using civilian locations, Israel had no agenda to harm innocents or damage civilian infrastructure, including the UN Works and Relief center in Gaza City.

(Let us on 4international say something on this please! This is not about a bureaucrat but about a damaging and lethal illness which is at the heart of Zionism in its bourgeois and petty bourgeois sense. It is NOT about one bureaucrat at all…it is about every aspect of bourgeois Zionism. Remember  Dayan, the General, who having won the war in 1967 went down to the Temple in Jerusalem and handed the Temple across to the amazed Arabs, who were antisemites. Get my point! same thing! it is a deep sickness inside Zionism since 1948)

However, the UN secretary may decide on a different reading, i.e. as grounds for prosecuting Brig. Eisenberg and Col. Malka and the men under their command as international war criminals. It be the first time in the IDF’s history. Its high morality in combat has only ever been impugned by Palestinians, their anti-Israel backers and certain left-wing extremists.

UN officials are pointing the way to this outcome by picking the Israeli account to pieces and making sure to defeat its purpose. Ban Ki-moon may go all the way to this goal in view of his rocky relations with Israel.

(This is enough to make every patriotic Jew and supporter cry. And the next mention of Gunness is just too much to bear)

Chris Gunness, a UN spokesman, told the media that half a dozen unexploded IDF shells were found in the UN compound and their serial numbers were traced to US factories. “The burning down of the UN compound in Gaza is massively symbolic,” he said.
UN officials argue that the use of white phosphorus caused millions of dollars in damage and could have led to a “great loss of life”.

In another part of its report, Israel says phosphorus was used, but only for “deploying a smoke screen to block the view of Hamas anti-tank crews deployed adjacent to the to the UN center, saving Israeli tank units from having to use reactive fire with the likelihood of greater civilian harm.” Israel has indemnified the world organization for the damage caused in the exchange of fire. 

Then, Tuesday, Feb. 2, another UN source told the London Guardian that the remains of a 500-pount Mk82 aircraft-dropped bomb had been found in the ruins of the al-Badr flour mill in northern Gaza. This contradicted the Israel report which said the building had been hit by tank shells as a “legitimate military target” because there were Hamas fighters “in the vicinity of the flour mill.” Israel denied it was a pre-planned target and that it was hit by an air strike. 

Goldstone has called the attack a war crime.
In the background of the Israel-UN hostilities lies a quiet argument going for weeks over whether or not to meet the world body’s demand for Israel to appoint a state commission of independent civilian and judicial figures to investigate the allegations of war crimes Goldstone has brought against Israel and Hamas.  

(Debka may be correct here and we respect their view. But the whole point is that these things must not be “quiet” at all. The discussion must be fought out in the open, and not quietly, but with the greatest force)


Prime minister Binyamin Netanyahu favors this step, but is challenged by defense minister Ehud Barak and chief of staff Lt. Gen. Gaby Ashkenazy, who refuse to recognize Goldstone’s credentials.

(And they are right- And that is a major reason now why Netanyahu must be forced right out of power with no delay. But that requires a new type of leadership)

This outcome could have been avoided had the prime minister exercised his authority for a clear decision.
Now that the IDF’s findings naming names are in UN hands, Israel has lost control of the next stage of the controversy over the anti-Israeli bias of the South African ex-judge’s report on the Gaza war. The world body now has a powerful tool for exercising its authority and taking it further up to and including the railroading of the two Israeli commanders.

(Yes and no! No because it is not just a matter of this one thing. The whole issue shows that this Israeli ruling bourgeois class, so concerned about the Europeans, the Americans, and world opinion , will certainly lead the Jews into another Holocaust, another great killing, and THE ANTISEMITES ARE PREPARING JUST THAT)

The debka article can be found on

Our thanks to them…

 As always our quotes are in brackets()


by Felix Quigley

October 23, 2009


This is a very important analysis by DEBKAfile.

Much time has been wasted in answering, or not really answering, the antisemitism inherent in the Goldstone report on the Gaza War.

We on 4international have seen this Goldstone Report as linked to the Iranian Nuclear Bomb and direct attacks against the existence of Israel, also denial of the Nazi Holocaust of the Jews.

The aim is to create a massive hatred of Israel, to put Israel so much on the defensive psychologically that it takes its eye off the ball, the main issue, which is the need to destroy the Iranian Nuclear Bomb, a bomb which is directly aimed at Israel, and however delivered would cause loss of Jewish life in the millions. iranian leaders have already said that to destroy Israel would require just one bomb to get through.

This is the analysis by DEBKAfile

[Begin DEBKAfile analsis here]


The Netanyahu government’s slow-moving, lackadaisical handling of the Goldstone commission mandated for accusing Israel of war crimes in Gaza, played into the hands of a coalition formed to strip the Israeli military of legitimacy as a defensive strike force against Iran’s fast-moving nuclear weapons program and its Middle East allies’ missile arsenals. Those missiles are poised to strike Israel’s population centers if Iran is attacked.

Israel had – and still has – plenty of moral, diplomatic and strategic tools for defending itself. They were not applied and so this hostile coalition was allowed to strike Israel on three fronts in the last fortnight: Turkish prime minister Tayyep Recip Erdogan’s unleashed an unbridled assault on the Jewish state; Muslim riots suddenly flared on Temple Mount; and the Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas changed his mind and pushed for a special UN Human Rights Commission session Friday, Oct. 16, to endorse the Goldstone report, after first accepting its postponement to March.

This sequence of events came together inexorably in Geneva where a predictable majority of the UNHRC voted to refer Israel’s alleged war crimes to the UN Security Council, while omitting to mention Hamas’ culpability.

The motivation behind this run of events was verified by its sequel:

Saturday, Muslim and Arab media, notably London-based news organizations, “predicted” that Israel would react to its “growing diplomatic isolation” with a “crazy military adventure” that would inflame the entire Middle East.

Al the region’s ills past and present were thus laid at Israel’s door and its military discredited from that day on.

The British prime minister Gordon Brown and French president Nicolas Sarkozy played along with this trend, first by staying out of the vote and second by then writing a letter to the Israeli prime minister, which smoothly confirmed Israel’s right to defend itself – calling it “an emotive issue” – without explaining why they failed to raise a finger against a UN motion denying this right.

In their letter, Brown and Sarkozy, who call themselves friends of Israel, expressed the hope that the international airing of the Gaza report would help promote peace negotiations because peace was the best safeguard for Israel’s security. Thus, with typical European hypocrisy, the two leaders committed themselves to helping the hate-Israel ball to continue rolling through international bodies which everyone knows are permanently loaded against the Jewish state by a majority of human-rights violators and tyrants.

Israel’s “emotiveness” was first invoked 39 years ago when Leila Khaled of the Palestinian Popular Liberation Front tried to hijack an El Al flight on Sept. 6, 1970, en route from Amsterdam to New York. Her accomplice was Patrick Arguella of Nicaragua, member of the Carlos international terrorist group, then backed by Russian intelligence.

The Israeli crew overpowered the two terrorists and the flight landed safely in London carrying Arguella’s body, Khaled tied up and a planeload of relieved passengers.

Then too the Foreign Office found the pilot over-emotional. And 24 hours later, the British authorities coolly released the Palestinian terrorist without charge although she had been armed with two grenades ready to detonate in midair. That free British pass for a terrorist endangers international aviation up to the present day. Nothing else appears to have changed in London.

Yet the Israeli prime minister continued to believe that calling European leaders in person and a charm campaign among them would be enough to reduce the fallout from the Goldstone report.

After the event – and much too late – Netanyahu’s office issued a determined statement Saturday: “We shall delegitimize all those who attack the legitimacy of our military. We’ll be every place where anti-Israel and anti-Semite forces are active.”

He vowed to mobilize all Israel’s best resources for building a task team to combat the fallout from the UNHRC resolution and put its recommendations before a special cabinet meeting – a process that will consume several more wasted weeks.

So how will this change the attitudes of the British and French leaders and line Europe up against the anti-Israel resolution?

And how will the Israeli government protect its top officials and generals from prosecution in the countries who voted for it or abstained?

Those are good questions given the Netanyahu government’s tame reaction to the crisis in Turkey’s relations with Israel: “Not everyone in Turkey is like Erdogan” or “Relations must be restored to their normal track without delay.”

They are dreaming. Erdogan’s violent anti-Israel and borderline anti-Semitic attitude is no passing phase. Israel must reconcile itself to the loss of this valuable ally and forget the friendly ties between the two air forces because the Islamic party ruling Turkey has gone fishing in extremist waters.

Netanyahu must also stop calling on the Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas to sit down and discuss peace without preconditions. Abbas has lost the Gaza Strip and the support of half of his people. To win them back, he has embarked on a rejectionist course in competition with the extremist Islamic Hamas. Two of the most dangerous powder kegs simmering in the Middle East today are not located in Washington or Paris but in Ramallah, 10 kilometers north of Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip 78 kilometers to the south.

Israel has a boxful of powerful tools for dealing with the two Palestinian governments.

If sanctions are legitimate penalties for Iran, why not economic sanctions against the Palestinian Authority in Ramallah for setting the Human Rights Council loose against Israel and its military?

Why should Israeli soldiers, called “war criminals by Palestinians and copycat Israel Arabs, grant special passes for Palestinian VIPs to exit the West Bank at night and go partying in Israeli towns?

Why does the Netanyahu government continue to release INS 220 million (app. $50 million) every month to the Gaza Strip knowing that the Hamas uses the money to rebuild the smuggling tunnels Israel destroyed in its Cast Lead operation in January?

By charging customs duty on all smuggled goods funneled into Gaza through the tunnels, the Hamas regime has turned the them into a going concern with the help of revenue from Israel. The same income also funds its military operations.

After Israel dismantled more than 100 West Bank roadblocks as requested by the Obama administration, the Palestinians proceeded to turn the Goldstone Report and the UN Human Rights Council into one large roadblock for Israeli travelers abroad. At the very least, put the roadblocks back.

But most all, the government headed by Netanyahu, Ehud Barak and Avigdor Lieberman is painfully slow-moving and cumbersome in the diplomatic-strategic arena.

The Goldstone report did not pop up this Friday. The panel started work on April 3, 2009 under a predetermined UNHRC mandate targeting Israel. The government had seven months at the very least prepare a counter-report documenting 10 years of murderous Palestinian campaigns specifically targeting Israeli civilians, women and children, and their consistent violation of every rule and standard of armed conflict and human rights.

This document should have been prepared in good time and handed in to the international court at The Hague with a list of the guilty Palestinian officials, some still in responsible positions with the Palestinian Authority in Ramallah.

The Palestinian delegate would then not have dared remark brazenly Saturday: “Anybody who kills children for no reason, or civilians should be prosecuted.”

One reason why the Middle East suddenly finds itself on a hazardous course today harks back to one of Barack Obama’s first acts as US president, which was to reach out to the Muslim world, including the Palestinians, in his June 4 speech at Cairo University. His conciliatory words planted high hopes in their minds that he was on their side and willing to squeeze Israel for gains which had eluded them in years of terror and military belligerence.

They misread his intentions: Obama sought to achieve peace for Israel with its Arab neighbors and the Palestinians, a tough call which all his predecessors in the White House had missed attaining, while the Arabs hoped to use Obama’s goodwill to neutralize Israel’s powerful military strength.

Feeling cheated of this hope, they proceeded to enlist the world, so far successfully, for disarming the IDF by having it discredited and criminalized.

The Palestinian-led campaign has nearly closed Israel’s window of opportunity for striking Iran’s nuclear weapons facilities; Netanyahu and his advisers were too slow off the mark. He will have to move fast and hit hard to turn the negative tide back.

[End DEBKAfile analysis here]


Although he disguised it Obama the President of the US is also an active Holocaust Denier. Of course he cannot say so directly but he does say it indirectly.

In his Cairo Speech referred to above Obama made a reference to the reality of the Holocaust. Fair enough you might say. But then he went on to make a comparision between the Nazi Holocaust of the Jews and the Palestinian Refugee issue.

That in fact is Holocaust Denial right there. Obama was saying that relatively speaking the Nazi Holocaust of the Jews was followed by the expulsion of the Arabs from their Homeland in 1948.

It is based on a lie. The Arabs who lived in Palestine, and many had only been living in Palestine for a very short time, having entered from neighbouring Arab areas attracted by the jobs and wealth created by Jewish initiative, itself based on the Zionist love for the land, had refused the offer of a state following the 1947 UN proposals, and had went to war in order to block the creation of the Jewish state.

This brings in the issue of Islam. It is the programme of Islam that it is impossible to have a Jewish, Christian or other state on their land, that is the land of Islam.

Who actually is Obama? This even now is very uncertain.

We know that he was born a Muslim, was educated in a Muslim school in Indonesia, while in that school in his most formative years worshipped as a Muslim.

That whole issue is very uncertain and indeterminate. But then Obama and his wife chose a Black and Israel Hating Church of a Chigago Christian sect in order to both worship and pursue their political careers, this was the Church which was run by Pastor Wright.

In this Israel hating environment Obama sat for fully 20 years.

Of course they rarely heard from Wright “We hate Jews” but they did all the time hear and support “We hate Israel”.


This of course is the content of the phenomenon of “Palestinianism”, a kind of religion and sociological category in its own right. It is an entity that tends to draw the curtains down on any kind of investigation of the Arabs in the Middle East and especially in Palestine. This has the big and for them the essential effect in hiding the close connection between Islam and Hitler, and of course in the Holocaust.

So when Obama belittled the Holocaust in Cairo he was actually on a roll, and was part of a continuum which existed from the age old opposition of Islam to Christians and to Jews living in their midst.

The proof of this is in the existence of so many Jew Free states in the Arab world. And indeed very few Christians also!

Christians are being driven out of every Arab country. There is hardly a word about this from the Vatican especially.

Judaism is a different kind of ideology entirely. The religion of Judaism is different to Christianity, and of course Islam, because as a religion it gets its motive force from being at the centre of a nation, and a national liberation movement, in the most definite sense.

Islam hates the Jews because it seeks world domination behind an anti nation fog of lies and terror.

But the New World Order of Bush and now Obama et al also hate the Jews in this respect also. The Jews fought to exist over 2000 years of persecution in the Diaspora. It is this essentially which lies behind the Jews of Israel today and their bitter hatred for the present American Government.

In this sense Jews represent all of us. That is all of us who hate world governmental dictatorship and who still see value in being Welsh, Irish etc.

The Irish ran up against a plank of this New World Dictatorship when the EU annulled their vote against the EU and made them vote again in the midst of a terrifying world capitalist (banking) crisis.

The forces of Judaism today though are unable to fight this new Fascist threat. it is not accidental that one of their own tribe, Goldstone, has emerged to point a dagger at the very existence of the Jewish people. Goldstone is indeed a Jew and he thinks he is right. This is throwing the Jewish people into enormous crisis and Jews cannot take a step forward without a sharp critique of Judaism itself. Is Judaism an ideology which can defend the Jews in this period of sharp turns and speeding capitalist crisis. Obviously not.

Leon Trotsky warned about the Nazi Holocaust, and before his murder he urged that Jews escape from Europe and that they set up their state and insisted that Jews defended that state.

It is necessary to turn to Trotskyism, and to learn lessons from the principles of this great man, and I suggest that Israel must learn from the method of Trotsky in creating the Red Army.

We ask our readers to think on this and ask what this might mean for Israel and its supporters today. We will of course return to this. Thank our readers for writing in, especially those who wrote “private” above their letter. We will keep it private and we will keep in touch with you.

His government may not be able to avoid establishing a credible panel of inquiry to rebut Goldstone’s allegations for the sake of an US veto at the UN Security Council against the report’s referral to the international war crimes tribunal. It could have been set up quietly without outside pressure months ago and validated the exhaustive probes carried out by the IDF of every single complaint arising from the Gaza offensive.


By Felix Quigley

October 17, 2009


For purposes of discussion let me place on paper the arguments of Richard Landes in fisking Goldstone. It seems to me that Landes raises huge questions and I am not sure that the answers to these questions are contained in his method, that is the method of a progressive bourgeois commentator. Of especial importance are some reference Landes makes to the Hague Kangaroo Court that murdered Milosevic. This is perhaps the key issue about Goldstone. Anyway we will print the Landes fisking first, then later add more material from a revolutionary Trotskyist viewpoint. I think Richard could draw some lessons from Trotsky´s method of fighting in the Civil War.

In the spirit of discussion we shall look closely at what Richard Landes has to say about this Goldman antisemitic report on the Gaza War.


It is of importance that Goldstone is a Jew but remember he is a certain type of Jew, one who has been a cog in the Imperialist war machine for a very long time, a man who was at the centre of the destruction of Yugoslavia and the murder of President Slobodan Milosevic inside the cell of that very Hague Kangaroo Court run by the very same Goldstone.

There was a very big struggle waged on Israpundit by myself and others over many years in which we said that first they came for Yugoslavia and the Serbs, then they will come for the Jews and Israel.

We were opposed on this by Israpundit especially by editor Belman who could never make up his mind, but especially by Narvey, Levinson and above all by that traitor to the Jewish people calling himself “Yamit82” (His true name is Nahum something) who Belman covers for.

Yes it sure looks that in Goldstone the Serb issue has come back to haunt the Jews.

Will the above named on Israpundit make any amends? No they will not. They are opportunists and essentially not principled and truthful people.

It is time now for truth and principle inside the Israeli Jewish movement.


[begin Landes fisking of Goldstone here]

September 17, 2009

Richard Goldstone has an op-ed in the NYT today. It is most striking because it is so transparently misleading. Indeed, it’s just the kind of misinformation that fisking was invented to counter. So I couldn’t help doing so.

Goldstone clearly counts on addressing a sympathetic audience ignorant of the facts — a choir. I address those readers of the news who still want to be part of a “reality-based” community, for whom evidence must be addressed, analyzed, and assessed. You make up your mind if Judge Goldstone is an honest, fair-minded man, or someone who, for whatever mysterious reason, is in thrall to a narrative he must serve, regardless of the evidence.

Justice in Gaza

I ACCEPTED with hesitation my United Nations mandate to investigate alleged violations of the laws of war and international human rights during Israel’s three-week war in Gaza last winter. The issue is deeply charged and politically loaded. I accepted because the mandate of the mission was to look at all parties: Israel; Hamas, which controls Gaza; and other armed Palestinian groups.

This is astonishing. Mary Robinson — the presiding genius of Durban Irejected it because the mandate was only to investigate Israel, tainted from the beginning. Goldstone requested, in vain, that the mandate be widened. For him to pretend that the mandate was to investigate all groups when it never was, whether he threw in some comments on Hamas or not, assumes a pervasive illiteracy among his audience — the readers of the NYT.

I accepted because my fellow commissioners are professionals committed to an objective, fact-based investigation.

The case against the composition of his committee — not one person sympathetic to Israel, at least one, Christine Chinkin, openly hostile — has led two groups of lawyers, in England and in Canada, to demand Chinkin’s disqualification since she had already pronounced herself — long before she saw any real evidence — on Israel’s guilt. Goldstone, even as he tossed out the petition on a subtle technicality, admitted that Chinkin’s case was borderline and the report reconfirms her prejudice. So whence comes this bland denial?

But above all, I accepted because I believe deeply in the rule of law and the laws of war, and the principle that in armed conflict civilians should to the greatest extent possible be protected from harm.

While this sounds great to the liberal ear, these laws were formulated for conventional warfare. When the war is asymmetrical and the attacker hides among civilans for protection — using human shields — the laws need reinterpreting. It’s precisely this explanatory context of insurgents using human shields as cover for attacks on enemy civilians, that Chinkin dismissed from the beginning, and that the Commission, even though it occasionally considers evidence for it, systematically minimizes.

Here it is worth noting that this failure to recognize the problem has on the one hand been exploited by UN member states and officials of the UNHRC and by NGO officials to attack Israel’s legitimacy. This is worse than naïveté – by masking and excusing this criminal behavior, this approach constitutes a major contribution to the perpetuation of global conflict.

In the fighting in Gaza, all sides flouted that fundamental principle.

While the Goldstone commission’s report was actually far more condemnatory of Israel than this even-handed formulation suggests, it calls into question the depth perception of the person making it. No other country in the world — the US, Great Britain, Germany — included, has spent as much time and developed as high a standard of restraint in carrying out attacks that might harm enemy civilians. Indeed, were the rest of the world accused by the standard in which Israel’s behavior “flouts” fundamental principles, they would all pass in front of Israel for severity or crime. This is recipe for outlawing war, or rather, the right of the advanced countries to defend themselves against asymmetrical warriors.

Many civilians unnecessarily died and even more were seriously hurt. In Israel, three civilians were killed and hundreds wounded by rockets from Gaza fired by Hamas and other groups. Two Palestinian girls also lost their lives when these rockets misfired.

In Gaza, hundreds of civilians died.

This is a mild version of the report, which sides with the Palestinian count of about 1400 killed, of which 900 were civilians. Close examination of this list reveals it to have numerous cases of combatants “miscategorized” civilians. (For another, independent, study of the same data, see here.)

civilian #62

Goldstone’s commission basically took over the figures from the NGOs (who all backed to some extent, the findings of the tendentious PCHR publication). Notes NGO Monitor:

    Despite all the evidence to the contrary, Goldstone’s report asserts that the “data provided by non-governmental sources with regard to the percentage of civilians among those killed are generally consistent …” (para. 30). There is no such “consistency” — the numbers claimed by these organizations differ by the hundreds. Goldstone also fails to note the major lack of credibility in PCHR’s data, such as characterizing two leading Hamas military figures, Nizar Rayan and Siad Siam, as civilians. And as researchers have shown, the B’Tselem data, while different from PCHR’s, is also unreliable.

Even by the PCHR figures, Israel has a 1:4 ratio of combatants to civilians, at least twice to ten times as good as US standards. And if the extensive research of some defenders of Israel are right, then its more like a 1:1 or better. Compare this with the twenty thousand civilians Ceylonese troops killed to get at a thousand Tamil Tigers, around the same time as Operation Cast Lead, and you get a sense of the disproportion here. Comparatively, even the figures Palestinians, NGOs and Goldstone promote, make Israel’s air campaign the most careful in the history of urban and aerial warfare.

They died from disproportionate attacks on legitimate military targets and from attacks on hospitals and other civilian structures. They died from precision weapons like missiles from aerial drones as well as from heavy artillery. Repeatedly, the Israel Defense Forces failed to adequately distinguish between combatants and civilians, as the laws of war strictly require.

This paragraph summarizes the entire 575 fact-finding report, and constitutes a “cut and paste” job of the work of deeply politicized Human Rights NGOs. (Goldstone was on the board of HRW, which had already weighed in heavily against Israel before he began the Commission. In order to avoid the semblance of a conflict of interest, he resigned from HRW.) In reality, as the report demonstrates, Goldstone does not know how many “civilians” died; they do not have any idea whether the attacks on “legitimate military targets” were “disproportionate”, whether “hospitals and other civilian structures” were used by Hamas, and whether “precision weapons like missiles from aerial drones” were used. (That last comment bears the particular signature of HRW’s Marc Garlasco, who eagerly applies to Israel a standard he never came near meeting in his own military work.)

Israel is correct that identifying combatants in a heavily populated area is difficult, and that Hamas fighters at times mixed and mingled with civilians. But that reality did not lift Israel’s obligation to take all feasible measures to minimize harm to civilians.

It’s all here. How often, and how systematically did Hamas mingle with civilans, even compel civilians to serve as human shield? The Commission minimizes this issue repeatedly, and never considers the possibility that the few shreds of evidence they briefly take up are actually the tip of a massively intimidated iceberg of Palestinian grievance against Hamas that they dare not voice, and that the Commission, eager to judge Israel harshly, showed no interest in detecting.

Notes Dan Kosky in the Guardian:

    Yet it is perhaps what is missing which is most telling. Reading the report, one would be unaware of Hamas’s human-shield strategy, a significant contributory factor to the civilian deaths in Gaza. Goldstone prefers to ignore the obvious. Although he states: “Palestinian armed groups were present in urban areas during the military operations and launched rockets from urban areas”, he avoids the logical conclusion of the massive use of human shields. Of course, admitting that Hamas endangered Gazan citizens would provide an alternative to Israeli guilt. Yet, rather than state the inconvenient truth, the report reinforces preconceived Israeli culpability.

This is the main reason of leaving Hamas’ violations out of the mandate: the more you pay attention to their atrocious behavior — maximizing their own civilian casualties — the more Israel gets “off the moral hook.”

Our fact-finding team found that in many cases Israel could have done much more to spare civilians without sacrificing its stated and legitimate military aims.

As the report shows, the term “fact finding” is entirely misleading – the report was composed of NGO claims and carefully chosen “eyewitness” testimony, which has been demonstrated to be inconsistent, at best, as clearly shown in the Abd Rabbo case.

It should have refrained from attacking clearly civilian buildings, and from actions that might have resulted in a military advantage but at the cost of too many civilian lives.

Here the astoundingly unjust measure of what “constitutes a sufficiiently advantageous target to warrant civilian casualties,” can best be seen by a comparison with just one incident. This NATO bombing in Serbia, was adjudicated by the International Court, for which Goldstone was a prosecutor. Hence, presumably, this ruling should offer some kind of precedent (or at least guideline) in this new and highly subjective field of law. NATO forces had bombed a TV station without warning (lest they endanger their pilots), killing 10-17 civilians, and interrupting transmission for a couple of hours. The court ruled:

    Assuming the station was a legitimate objective, the civilian casualties were unfortunately high but do not appear to be clearly disproportionate.

Mark Garlasco makes similar remarks in defense of the US, whose record for minimizing civilian casualties, especially under his guidance in the early years of this decade, was far below Israel’s:

    “I don’t think people really appreciate the gymnastics that the U.S. military goes through in order to make sure that they’re not killing civilians,” Garlasco points out.

Garlasco ordered over 50 strikes none of which hit their target. Under him US civilian to combatant casualtes in targeted killings were well below 1:10. His maximal acceptable casualty limit was 50. Israel’s is 15, and commanders often call off strikes for even lower figures. As a result, for this decade Istael’s casualty ratio is almost 2:1 (250 targets, 150 collateral casualties).

In these cases, Israel must investigate, and Hamas is obliged to do the same. They must examine what happened and appropriately punish any soldier or commander found to have violated the law.

In addition to the absurd and immoral equivalence between Israel and Hamas, the claim that Israel has a “dismal record” of investigating its own forces is Goldstone’s self-justification. Comparison with other countries in similar situations disproves this claim.

Unfortunately, both Israel and Hamas have dismal records of investigating their own forces. I am unaware of any case where a Hamas fighter was punished for deliberately shooting a rocket into a civilian area in Israel — on the contrary, Hamas leaders repeatedly praise such acts. While Israel has begun investigations into alleged violations by its forces in the Gaza conflict, they are unlikely to be serious and objective.

Is this projection?

Also note: the language here is drawn almost verbatim from HRW’s press release from Sept. 16

    But both Israel and Hamas have dismal records of investigating and holding accountable members of their own forces for serious laws-of-war violations.

Goldstone conducted an independent investigation? Looks more like plagiarism from HRW, from which Goldstone apparently resigned only formally.

Absent credible local investigations, the international community has a role to play.

The term “international community” is self-serving as invoked by Goldstone – the UN human rights mechanism, including the UNHRC, as well as institutions like the ICC, are politicized, biased, and are responsible, along with the NGOs which they are closely linked, for the destruction of the values of human rights. Note that the Commission’s mandate was established by the a body presided over by Cuba and containing such stalwart human rights defenders as:

    Angola, Argentina, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Bolivia, Brazil, Burkina Faso, Chile, China, Cuba, Djibouti, Egypt, Gabon, Ghana, India, Indonesia, Jordan, Madagascar, Malaysia, Mauritius, Mexico, Nicaragua, Nigeria, Pakistan, Philippines, Qatar, Russian Federation, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, South Africa, Uruguay, Zambia

This is “human rights” the through the Newspeak looking glass.

If justice for civilian victims cannot be obtained through local authorities, then foreign governments must act. There are various mechanisms through which to pursue international justice. The International Criminal Court and the exercise of universal jurisdiction by other countries against violators of the Geneva Conventions are among them. But they all share one overarching aim: to hold accountable those who violate the laws of war. They are built on the premise that abusive fighters and their commanders can face justice, even if their government or ruling authority is not willing to take that step.

Pursuing justice in this case is essential because no state or armed group should be above the law. Western governments in particular face a challenge because they have pushed for accountability in places like Darfur, but now must do the same with Israel, an ally and a democratic state.

Goldstone selects Israel as the scapegoat for “Western governments” to justify the ICC case on Sudan and respond to charges that this case is “racist” or anti-Arab.

Failing to pursue justice for serious violations during the fighting will have a deeply corrosive effect on international justice, and reveal an unacceptable hypocrisy. As a service to the hundreds of civilians who needlessly died and for the equal application of international justice, the perpetrators of serious violations must be held to account.

This is nearly breathtaking. The “Human Rights” NGO’s and the UN have an obsession with Israel that literally sucks away attention to far more serious violations the world over. Notes Anne Bayefsky:

    The Council has adopted more resolutions and decisions condemning Israel than all the other 191 UN member states combined…. The more time the Council spends demonizing Israel, the less likely it becomes that it will ever get around to condemning genocide in Sudan, female slavery in Saudi Arabia, or torture in Egypt.”

If anything, this report, far from helping the cause of human rights, helps that of terrorists.

Hypocrisy is rampant in Goldstone’s report, including this final remark. If the commission wanted to go after a Western “ally” just for the sake of even-handedness — itself a dubious way to proceed — then surely the USA, with, at least according to claims by respectable organizations of having killed hundreds of thousands of Iraqis deserves more scrutiny than tiny, beleaguered Israel, with — at most — its hundreds of casualties.

Richard Goldstone, the former chief prosecutor for war-crime tribunals on Rwanda and the former Yugoslavia, is the head of the United Nations Fact-Finding Mission on the Gaza Conflict.

Richard Goldstone, what happened to you? I’m reading your book. You have investigated really awful cases of mass slaughter. How could you lose your sense of proportions, your moral compass, and join this mad chorus of accusers? What “gift” has corrupted your sight?