The fall-out from the UN’s Goldstone report over Gaza is that Israel is once again seen as existing above the law:
“That President Obama is receiving the Noble Peace prize after his failure to speak out during the Gaza war, and after his administration’s protection of a state that has committed war crimes, is an abomination,” Michael Ratner, president of the New York-based Centre for Constitutional Rights, told IPS.
The number of Palestinians killed during the conflict is estimated at between 1,387 and 1,417, mostly civilians, compared with four Israeli fatal casualties in southern Israel and nine soldiers killed during fighting, four of whom died as a result of friendly fire.
Ratner said one would hope that the United States would not block the referral of both Israel and Hamas to the International Criminal Court (ICC) for an investigation of war crimes committed in Gaza.
“Sadly, its conduct at the Human Rights Council [in Geneva] where it called the Goldstone report deeply flawed shows that it will again do all in its power to try and bury any investigation of Israel for war crimes,” he added.
By doing so, Washington is giving Israel a green light to continue to commit atrocities, said Ratner, who heads the non-profit human rights litigation organisation.
The failure to refer the Gaza matter to the ICC undercuts any claim that the law is applied equally to Israel and the Palestinians, he noted.