Netanyahu Demands Cancellation of Goldstone Report
At his April 3, 2011 cabinet meeting Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu commented on the Washington Post printed remarks of Judge Richard Goldstone, saying “There are very few instances in which those who disseminate libels retract their libel. This happened in the case of the Goldstone Report. Goldstone himself said that all of the things that we have been saying all along are correct – that Israel never intentionally fired at civilians and that our inquiries operated according to the highest international standards. Of course, this is in complete contrast to Hamas, which intentionally attacked and murdered civilians and, naturally, never carried out any sort of inquiry.”
Netanyahu has called “for the immediate cancellation of the Goldstone Report.”I have asked National Security Council Chairman Yaakov Amidror to convene a special staff meeting of people from the Foreign, Justice and Defense ministries to formulate practical and public diplomacy measures, in order to reverse and minimize the great damage that has been done by this campaign of denigration against the State of Israel. I expect their recommendations in the coming days. We will act on the public diplomacy front, and on other fronts, with the international community and the UN in order to demand the justice that is due to Israel.
Netanyahu commented on Israel’s continued economic, social, and educational success, noting “an all-time record of 3.5 million tourists,” and growth in the areas of science, technology and industry. The Jewish State has been accepted into OECD (the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development).
Expansion of fence construction along the southern border was announced. GOC Intelligence Maj.-Gen.Aviv Kochavi discussed the “confluence of several trends” effecting events in the Middle East, noting the effect of increased “exposure to the West and to human rights, major socio-economic gaps and an eroding middle class, and cracks in the masses’ fear of the regimes.” “Success of the masses in one country is a cause of inspiration and “contagion” that motivates process in additional countries…The public has become an interlocutor in the political process.”
Kochavi cautioned that in Egypt “there has been a weakening of the level of security in, and control over, the Sinai peninsula,” resulting in increased smuggling; Iran continues to challenge “the existing global order…despite the international pressure” of sanctions and the weakening of the Syrian “link,” and “”Hamas is the main power that controls the Gaza Strip even though Islamic Jihad’s military power has strengthened.”
The Cabinet “decided to recommend to the Knesset that a state of emergency be declared for a period of one year, to “provide the necessary authority to deal with the prevailing security situation.”