Saturday, April 2, 2011

Goldstone Recants Goldstone Report

Reconsidering the Goldstone Report on Israel and war crimes, by Richard Goldstone. (Washington Post April 1, 2001):
We know a lot more today about what happened in the Gaza war of 2008-09 than we did when I chaired the fact-finding mission appointed by the U.N. Human Rights Council that produced what has come to be known as the Goldstone Report. If I had known then what I know now, the Goldstone Report would have been a different document.

The allegations of intentionality by Israel were based on the deaths of and injuries to civilians in situations where our fact-finding mission had no evidence on which to draw any other reasonable conclusion. While the investigations published by the Israeli military and recognized in the U.N. committee’s report have established the validity of some incidents that we investigated in cases involving individual soldiers, they also indicate that civilians were not intentionally targeted as a matter of policy.

(And no, despite the date, it's not an April Fool's joke). Jeffrey Goldberg:
We now have a situation in which the founder of Human Rights Watch has denounced his organization for spreading falsehoods about Israeli actions in the Gaza war, and in which the author of the United Nations report condemning Israel now condemns his own work. Who is going to go next?
CAMERA (Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America) asks:
While that's a dramatic and notable admission, the question remains: Why didn't he know then what was known then?