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Friday, February 12, 2010

Netanyahu just says no

Prime Minister Netanyahu has decided that there will be no 'independent' Israeli inquiry into the charges arising from the Goldstone Report in connection with Operation Cast Lead.
“Israel feels the report it gave was a serious, comprehensive, credible and complete answer to the UN secretary-general,” one senior official in the Prime Minister’s Office said.

“We believe that we conduct credible investigations and that we have procedures in place to investigate these types of matters that are as good as exist in any country in the world,” he said, adding that the IDF’s investigations were under the oversight of the attorney-general, and subject ultimately to Supreme Court review.
Former legal adviser to the foreign ministry Alan Baker warns that the failure to set up an 'independent' inquiry could mean endless 'lawfare' suits in European countries.
The UN General Assembly, which endorsed the Goldstone Commission report, does not have the authority to kick the issue over to the International Criminal Court in The Hague, and it is unlikely that it will be sent to the Security Council – which does have such authority – because of the likelihood that the US would cast a veto.

The problem, therefore, said Alan Baker, a former legal adviser to the Foreign Ministry, lies not necessarily with the UN or a threat to send the issue to the ICC, but with individual states – such as Britain or Spain – that could potentially initiate proceedings against Israeli officials and officers on the basis of what was written in the Goldstone Report.

Baker said that without the establishment of a commission, “we will have a non-ending series of issues with countries like Britain.”


Baker said that while Israel may have dodged the bullet at the UN, the issue would not likely disappear unless some type of commission – an official commission of inquiry or a committee set up by the government – looked at the policy-making process to dispel charges in the Goldstone Report that Israel deliberately targeted civilians.
Britain still has not changed its law since trying to arrest Tzipi Livni in December.

But Baker is wrong. An 'independent inquiry' that does not provide the uncivilized nations of the world with some Israeli blood will change nothing in the court of world opinion. Even with a number of high-ranking officers sent to prison, it is doubtful that an 'independent inquiry' would have any effect. As I noted in a post at the beginning of the week:
The world doesn't want a commission of inquiry - it wants IDF soldiers court-martialed, kicked out of the army and put in jail so that the next time the IDF won't fight a war against terrorists because its officers won't want to risk their careers and their freedom to fight war that will result in their spending the rest of their natural lives in jail. The world wants a commission of inquiry so that the IDF will no longer be in the terror-fighting business, and therefore there will soon no longer be a Jewish state (God forbid). That's the real reason behind the calls for a commission of inquiry, led by a self-hating Jew who is willing to sacrifice his people for his own boundless personal ambition.

A commission of inquiry that confirms that IDF soldiers are innocent of war crimes will solve nothing.
The government made the right decision.


At 5:25 PM, Blogger NormanF said...

Exactly. And it would validate a blood libel against Israel. The last thing Israel should want to do is to give Goldstone any credence. Israel's enemies have yet to give an answer to Israel's rebuttal delivered to the UN last week. They won't because what they really want is to deprive Israel of its right of self defense. That must not be allowed to happen.

Israel did the right thing today.


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