Ha’aretz yesterday reported that Sir John Sawers, the British Ambassador to the UN, supports the findings of the Goldstone Commission. The Independent today quotes him as saying “This investigation was led by a serious figure, Richard Goldstone, a South African Jew with long experience in justice. It’s not as if he was in any way biased.”
The Goldstone Mission was created by a biased mandate which went a long way to assuming the major conclusion of the Report – that Israel was guilty of War Crimes. Its composition was not even-handed - for example Professor Christine Chinkin (LSE) signed an open letter (11 January 2009) in The Sunday Times in which she wrote " Israel 's actions demonstrate aggression, not self-defence". No more than two of the 575 pages are devoted to the fact that 12,000 missiles and Quassam rockets were fired at Israelis for eight years prior to the action in Gaza . There is no mention of Israel ’s right to self-defence.
The ZF calls on the UK Government:
(i) to reject the Goldstone Report when it is discussed in the UN Human Rights Council in March (or sooner in the Security Council) and to lobby other relevant members of the UN to do likewise;
(ii) to recognise that a referral of Israel to the International Criminal Court (a recommendation of the Report) would be widely seen as official endorsement of Hamas terrorism and could set back the fight against terrorism elsewhere – including in the UK .
The ZF deplores the reported comments of Sawers about Goldstone's religion. There are numerous anti-Zionist Jews and Goldstone's religion is irrelevant.
The ZF notes that in only five days, nearly 1,750 have signed a petition to the Prime Minister calling on the UK to reject the Goldstone Report.
The ZF calls on the UK government to clarify Sawers' comments and to confirm that acceptance of the Goldstone Report - together with its recommendation that Israel should be prosecuted in the International Criminal Court - is not its policy.