A Time for Truth and a Time for Action
by Barry Shrage
April 5, 2011
“Reconsidering the Goldstone Report on Israel and war crimes,” a recent op-ed in the Washington Post by Richard Goldstone, is vitally important. I urge you to read it.
Goldstone, the South African jurist who led a U.N. panel investigating the 2009 Gaza war, retracts the assertion that Israel intentionally killed civilians. Furthermore, Goldstone expresses regret for equating Israel with Hamas.
Prime Minister Netanyahu said “there are very few instances in which those who disseminate libels retract their libels.” This is one of those rare cases.
Share the truth about Israel
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Help get the word out regarding the Israel we know and love. Lies have now been unmasked and the truth seeks the light of day. As Israel fights for its life and reputation against a worldwide conspiracy of delegitimization, we can do no less.
Confirming what we’ve always known
To me, Goldstone’s op-ed confirms what we’ve always known. In a region filled with the most murderous violence, Israel is among the world’s most moral nations. The IDF, while under constant threat from genocidal enemies, remains committed to a code of honor that distinguishes it from every other army on earth.
It reminds us that Israel is careful in battle, and upholds the highest traditions of our Jewish people, even as it fights for its survival. Israel is not perfect, but it remains far more moral than those who accuse and demonize it on a daily basis at the U.N. The Goldstone Report spread the most damaging blood libel around the world and now we know that it was a lie.
In the two years since the Gaza war, Israel has extensively investigated alleged incidents in Gaza. Hamas has continued to target Israeli civilians in their homes, businesses and schools.
Israel is at the heart of a positive Jewish identity for generations of American Jews. The Goldstone Report challenged our belief in Israel with half-truths about Israel’s conduct. Sadly, this report shaped the way people around the world--including many Jews-- thought about the Jewish State.
Democracies must defend against terror
The fact is, that for Israel to make the sacrifices required for peace, it must know that it can appropriately respond to violence. The recent murders in Itamar, the rockets and mortars fired from Gaza, and the bus stop bombing in Jerusalem require a strong Israeli reaction to defend itself, and to ensure that these offenses will stop.
There is no country on earth that would tolerate the bombing of its civilian population. The clear goal of Israel’s (and America’s) enemies at the U.N. and throughout the world was to make it impossible for democracies to defend themselves against terror and murder. To be accused of “war crimes,” is the most horrible of all accusations for Jews, and for all those who value human life.
Goldstone’s op-ed makes it clear that Israel can and must act against its enemies when under attack, and that we can continue to trust Israel to act in the most careful and moral way.
As Mark Twain once said, “A lie can travel halfway around the world while the truth is still putting on its shoes.” A year and a half after the Goldstone Report, the truth has finally put its shoes on.
For more information, please visit www.cjp.org.