Israel equalized to Hamas: the usual squint of the UN

The UN and even more his Human Rights Council (UNHRC) condemning Israel is so obvious: it is like the news of the dog biting a man. The “fixation”, as Netanyahu said, is evident from the abnormal percentages: between 2006 and 2013, Israel was condemned 45 times, the same number as all the other 192 member states all together.

But this time the UN has tried to surprise us, and to give the public also a man biting a dog: the news from UNHRC is that both Israel and Hamas, the terrorist organization,”may have committed war crimes”, both of them on the same page, during the Gaza last summer conflict: this is the conclusion reached in a 50 page-report that equates a democratic country army with an inflexible moral code to a terrorist organization that uses explosive belts, kills the “collaborators” in the street shooting in their head and envisages the extermination of the Jews in its Charter.
The Human Rights Council, even when its name was “Commission, has always privileged Israel alleged sins to any other violation, so much so that they forgot in its documents what is happening in Syria, Saudi Arabia, China…

Now here we go again, although the report suggests some caution after the ousting of the previous Commissioner William Schabas due to his ties (even economic) with the Palestinians, and after that the 2009 Goldstone report on Operation Cast Lead was denied by Goldstone himself: first he mistreated Israel and then he wrote in the Washington Post that he did not have the right sources.

Today, Israel is condemned for hitting civilian facilities, according to the report, without justification. Israel is asked why it decided to strike those buildings, while its timely warnings to the population are being despised because, as the report says, they did not allow enough time for evacuating.

The report speaks of 742 civilian fatalities and blames Israel for “not revising the air strikes technique after having observed its effects on civilians.” What the Jewish state should have done to stop the missiles that were falling on the Israelis is not pointed out. On the other hand, the report says hypocritically also and only that Hamas “indiscriminately targeted Israeli civilians” and caused “great troubles” to those attempting to find a way to the shelters within a few seconds. Actually not much compared to the Hamas genocidal intentions, long therm plan of destruction of Israel also through terrorist attacks through the tunnels.

There has never been an analysis more incoherent and heedless of the laws that even oblige any civilized country to defend its civilian population. It is no coincidence that Hamas declared its satisfaction with a wild and ignorant report like this. Can the UN presume to ignore today in full swing of the asymmetric warfare in so many regions of the world, that it makes use of civilians so extensively and cynically that it is impossible to distinguish the civil structures from those that are legally a war target because they are just used as war facilities?
All were aware that the largest hospital in Gaza, Shifa, was used as the headquarters of the Hamas leadership, that Hamas stored weapons and men in UNRWA schools, and that every home and every street were used to hide launch ramps or tunnels entrance for terrorist attacks.

Moreover, the war against Hamas was a war that Israel tried to avoid in every way; a war that prevented a massacre of Israelis through the tunnels, a murderous and billionaire project funded by Qatar and Iran. Perhaps someone did not like the fact that Israel had the possibility to use Iron Dome to protect its people from a rain of missiles seeking women and children.

Distinguishing between civilian and military deaths, in a war where most of the combatants does not wear a uniform and many are forced to become human shields, is ultimately a claim that has already proved unrealistic in the previous investigations.

But the Human Rights Council was interested in placing Israel side by side with Hamas in order to please with its assessment those who do not distinguish between democracy and dictatorship, defense and attack, and confuse terrorists with freedom fighters. Those who want to oblige Israel to bow down its head in front of the dangerous requests of the international comunity . And they are many.


This article originally appeared in slightly different form in Italian in Il Giornale (June 23, 2015)

About the Author
Fiamma Nirenstein is a journalist, author, former Deputy President of the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the Italian Chamber of Deputies, and member of the Italian delegation at the Council of Europe.