Posted by: ZOA Staff
June 26, 2015
News Press Release

ZOA Condemns Anti-Semitic UN Human Rights Council Report, Filled With Lies, Accusing Israel of War Crimes in Gaza

The Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) has condemned the malicious and absurdly biased and anti-Semitic report produced under the aegis of the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC).

The UNHRC was created in 2006 to supersede its corrupt predecessor, the UN Human Rights Commission, which at its end counted six of the most politically repressive regimes — Cuba, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Libya, China and Vietnam — as members. The UNHRC’s membership is composed of 54 states, with a heavy emphasis on geographical distribution, with the result that it has fewer democracies and more autocracies than its predecessor. Within three years, the UNHRC eliminated probes into the most serious human-rights abuses in Belarus, Congo, Cuba, Liberia and Sudan. In that time, some 200,000 people had been killed and 2.5 million displaced in Darfur alone. The UNHRC has, however, condemned Israel more times than it has condemned  all the other nations in the world combined.

The 183-page report, from former New York State Justice Mary McGowan Davis and Senegalese lawyer Doudou Diene preposterously and nonsensically asserts that Israel continues to “occupy” Gaza because it can “send troops within a reasonable time to make its power felt”–– in a territory Israel completely evacuated in 2005, in which not a single Israeli official, administrator, soldier or policeman is to be found and in which its writ no longer runs. As the Wall Street Journal wryly observes, “By that standard, the U.S. occupies Canada and the Bahamas.”

The report also accuses Israel of using “disproportionate” force –– a criterion which does not actually preclude as illegal the death of civilians in legitimate military action, especially where the other side is deliberately using them as human shields, as Hamas does. Disproportionate force means inflicting excessive civilian losses against the likely military gains. For the drafters of this report, however, it simply means dead Palestinians, irrespective of genuine Hamas war crimes of embedding themselves among Palestinian civilians which ensured casualties; irrespective of whether some Palestinians were serving as voluntary human shields; and irrespective of documented Israeli warnings to civilians to vacate targeted areas that were often ignored.

ZOA National President Morton A. Klein & National Chairman Dr. Michael Goldblatt said, “We strongly opposed the U.N. Human Rights Council’s creation of this inquiry at the time as a disgraceful act of moral perversion and anti-Semitism.

“To hold the law-abiding Jewish state to standards never used in judging the affairs of other states while additionally refusing to investigate Hamas war crimes of attacking deliberately civilians and deliberately embedding their own forces among their own civilians –– indeed, even making excuses, as this report did, for such war crimes on the ground that Gaza is a small, heavily populated territory –– amounts to legitimizing hatred and terrorism against Jews.

“It is outrageous to accuse Israel of war crimes when the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) have done more than any army in history to protect enemy civilians in time of war. In the current case, Israel called off strikes where civilians were found to be present and distributed leaflets and text messages to civilians to leave target zones, only to be often countermanded by Hamas.

“Even UN officials have admitted that Hamas has urged civilians to stay in places where the IDF warned them to leave. For example, on 16 July, 2014, according to UN officials, ‘the Israeli military delivered text messages to virtually all the residents of Ash Shuja’iyya and Az Zaitoun neighborhoods in eastern Gaza city, approximately 100,000 people, warning them to leave their homes … ahead of attacks to be launched in the area … the Palestinian Ministry of Interior in Gaza reportedly instructed the residents … not [to] flee the area … the vast majority decided to stay.’

“A Hamas urban war manual discovered by Israeli troops on the ground in Gaza strongly supports Israel’s claim that Hamas uses Gaza civilians as human shields. Moreover, Hamas, war crimes are multi-faceted and numerous: Hamas deliberately fires missiles at civilians; it fires from civilian homes, hospitals and schools, it uses hospitals and ambulances to protect and transport its gunmen, it mines civilian homes and streets; it uses civilians, including children, as cover; it impedes humanitarian supplies and targets staging points for humanitarian convoys; it uses ambulances to ferry terrorists and weapons; it kidnaps civilians and takes them hostage; it intimidates and threatens journalists.

“Israel has done even more than the U.S. to protect civilian lives in a war zone, yet it finds itself pilloried today by the U.N.

“The ZOA calls upon the Obama Administration, not only to oppose the tabling of this vicious report, but to unreservedly and publicly condemn it.”