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Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Goldstone's ad hominem attack on Israel

Alan Dershowitz rips Richard Goldstone and the report that bears his name. But here's the key part: Whereas most commentators until now have said that you should only attack the messenger if you can't attack the message (and have found plenty about the message to be worthy of attack), Dershowitz says that in this case, attacking the messenger is legitimate as well.
The definition of the ad hominem fallacy is to respond to substantive arguments solely by attacking the person who offered them. The mirror image of this classic fallacy is to try to bolster arguments solely by praising the person who offered them. This is what is happening with respect to the notorious Goldstone report regarding Israel’s conduct during the Gaza War. Had Richard Goldstone, a distinguished judge and a prominent Jew, not been the author of the United Nations Human Rights Council report on Israel, it would be tossed in the trash barrel along with other one-sided and biased reports by this prejudice group which targets only Israel for human rights violations. But those seeking to defend this indefensible report point to Goldstone’s authorship as proof that it must have credibility. He has in effect placed his “Hechsher,” that is his religious certification of purity, on this impure report. It is appropriate, therefore, to respond to this argument by discrediting its author and his selfish motives for granting his imprimatur to conclusions which he well knows are false, incomplete, misleading and bigoted.

Indeed Goldstone and his supporters are acknowledging to Jewish friends that he did have a motive in agreeing to head the group that issued the report. His motive, according to his supporters, was to bring some balance to a report that without his input would have been “even worse.” Goldstone’s daughter, Nicole, in an obviously pained interview with Haaretz said that, “Had Richard Goldstone not served as the head of the UN inquiry into the Gaza War, the accusations against Israel would have been harsher.” She continued. “My father took on the job, for peace, for everyone and also for Israel.” She told the Jerusalem Post, “My dad loves Israel and it wasn’t easy for him to see and hear what happened. I think he heard and saw things he didn’t expect to see and hear….”

The problem is not what Goldstone saw and heard. It’s what he willfully and deliberately refused to see and hear.
Read the whole thing.


At 5:38 PM, Blogger NormanF said...

He refused to Israel's side of the story and he willfully conducted a kangaroo court inquiry. That is enough to discredit a man of his temperament and reputation. His report is indicted not by what says but by what it leaves out:

the truth.

Fair-minded people deserved better than the one-sided pillorying of Israel, its democratic values, its ethical spirit and the exacting performance of its armed forces. Those are the things to which Goldstone gives short shrift - on behalf of countries that don't even pretend to conform to the rules Israel has set for itself.

So yes - it was a blood libel against the Jewish State.


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