Wednesday, January 23rd | 17 Shevat 5779

April 15, 2011 3:51 pm

Senate Passes Resolution Urging U.N. Retraction of Goldstone Report

avatar by Maxine Dovere

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Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), here with Shlomi Kofman, Israel's Deputy Counsul General in New York. Photo: Maxine Dovere.

With bipartisan support, U.S. Senators Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) and James Risch (R-ID) announced a resolution “calling on the United Nations Human Rights Council to rescind the anti-Israel Goldstone Report.”  They were joined by more than 30 Senators.  The resolution urged the UN panel to “take measures to ensure that the panel no longer launches false attacks and accusations against Israel.” 

The resolution is not the first effort by the Senators to block dissemination of the Report.  In September, 2009, the senators urged the United States to take action to block the erroneous report from reaching the UN Security Council.  Goldstone used an April 2, 2011, Washington Post “Op Ed” to retract his premise that Israel committed war crimes during the 2008 war in Gaza and intentionally killed Palestinians.

Senator Gillibrand said, “Goldstone’s admission of error is not enough to undo the damage and libel made against Israel.  Legitimizing this erroneous report sends a dangerous message to countries defending themselves against terrorism. The UN Human Rights Council members must put Judge Goldstone’s words into action and immediately revoke this inflammatory, anti-Israel document.” 

Senator Risch said, “The Goldstone report must be rescinded by the UN Human Rights Council.  It is a grossly flawed, one-sided document and for the United Nations to continue using this report shows a bias against the nation of Israel.  Every country has a right to defend itself against terrorist attacks.”

Noting that the Goldstone Report makes “numerous unsubstantiated assertions against Israel…(and) downplayed the overwhelming evidence that Hamas deliberately used Palestinian civilians and civilian institutions as human shields against Israel and deliberately targeted Israeli civilians with rocket fire for over eight years” the resolution lists the United Nations Human Rights Council vote “to welcome the report, to endorse its recommendations, and to condemn Israel without mentioning Hamas” and notes that the Report’s statements “have caused and continue to cause extensive harm to Israel’s standing in the world” even though “the Government of Israel did not intentionally target civilians in the Gaza Strip” and that “Goldstone states that the crimes committed by Hamas were clearly intentional, were targeted at civilians, and constitute a violation of international law.”

The Resolution concludes, saying Goldstone concluded that “Israel, like any other sovereign nation, has the right and obligation to defend itself and its citizens” and resolves that the United States Senate “calls on the United Nations Human Rights Council members to … rescind the report” further urging UN Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon to “reform the United Nations Human Rights Council so that it no longer unfairly, disproportionately, and falsely criticizes Israel on a regular basis… prevent any further United Nations action on the report’s findings and …prevent any further action on the report’s findings.”

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