Beyond the Cusp

June 25, 2015

UNHRC Report on Israel Uses Disproportionate Accusations

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Very few would argue that Israel has friends to spare or even that other nations are publically lining up to declare good and open supportive relations with Israel and if anything, exactly the opposite is the situation. Despite such a guarded prospective being openly displayed, underneath the radar and far from sight there are many nations who willingly cooperate and even work towards similar goals with Israel. Some act simply to protect Israel from those who stand poised to destroy Israel by small steps, by a million cuts or by a single stroke of the sword beheading her as one would a raging monster. There are claims that Israel has designs on ruling the Middle East from the position of a ‘Greater Israel’ which would extend from the Mediterranean Sea to the two rivers, the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers. They quote the liberation of Judea and Samaria as the initial step where after Jordan joined the war to annihilate Israel in June of 1967 believing the Egyptian and Syria broadcasts of their easy and unstoppable successes and their imminent approach on Tel Aviv from both the northeast and from the south, Israel was forced to divert troops heading to reinforce the efforts in the Sinai Peninsula against Egypt to address the newly opened from Jordan in the east. That diversion made steady advances pausing to pray upon the liberated Western Wall and Temple Mount which brought forth an emotional attachment renewed that overwhelmed these Israelis with the gift of being the ones who liberated the most holy of grounds to all Jews. They subsequently liberated the rest of Judea along with Samaria reforming the proper and legal border with Jordan as the Jordan River. The liberation of Judea and Samaria was not an attempted conquest and was a response to an attack and reclaiming the lands stolen by Jordan during the wars to destroy Israel immediately after her founding in 1948 through early 1949. Even this small patch of land which by treaties and promises are lands which legally are an important and vital part of Israel being once again attempted to subvert and steal through the invention of a nation which claims to have been attacked and overrun by Israel though nobody can find the war or military operations which produced such a result. This is a crucial test of whether the United Nations, European Union, and all the world’s nations and their international agencies, alliances and partnerships will respect their promises to the Jewish Zionists to permit and support their return and rebuilding of their ancestral homelands on a tiny strip of land nestled at the eastern edge of the Mediterranean Sea which measures merely a size about equal to the State of New Jersey, smaller than El Salvador, Belize, Djibouti and even Macedonia. The map shown below depicts the proportional insignificance of the land claimed for the Jewish homelands compared to the lands of nations claiming a Muslim heritage of which a significant number claim to be Islamic States observing Islamic Sharia which specifically defines Muslim Code of Law and concerning all practices, rituals, interactions and obligations for all Muslims to surrender in their devotions to Allah and defining the place of their nation, of Islam and their interactions between them and other nations all included and codified in Sharia.

 

Display of the Muslim Nations of the World in the Middle East, Asia and Northern Africa in Green with Israel depicted in Red making the relative size of Israel evident and consisting of under one percent of the land mass

Display of the Muslim Nations of the World in the Middle East, Asia and Northern Africa in Green with Israel depicted in Red

 

This past week Israel was presented with two reports of which only one can be valid as they are diametric opposites. The one which the media has obsessed over was issued by the United Nations Human Rights Council deliberating over the commission of potential war crimes, crimes against humanity, criminal acts under the Geneva Conventions and any actions the committee found to be of particular interest of which disproportional use of force appeared to be their major area of emphasis with a subcategory viewing what can only be described as seeking reasons for the disparity in injured, murdered, rendered homeless and other material damages and the other was a review of the and the steps taken to prevent inflicting or receiving injury of death of civilians and efforts to minimize collateral damage as well as any efforts to use protected structures, numbers of individual noncombatants in attempts to protect military hardware and positioning military sites of importance within civilian structures and targeting parameters. This military review was conducted independently of the United Nations and included eleven high-ranking military officials who visited Israel back in May as part of this High Level International Military Group on a fact-finding mission for reviewing Operation Protective Edge. As reported in an article in Arutz Sheva their conclusions included:

 

“We examined the circumstances that led to the tragic conflict last summer and are in no doubt that this was not a war that Israel wanted,” the report states. “Israel sought to avoid the conflict and exercised great restraint over a period of months before the war when its citizens were targeted by sporadic rocket attacks from Gaza.”

“Once the war had begun, Israel made repeated efforts to terminate the fighting,” it continued. “The war that Israel was eventually compelled to fight against Hamas and other Gaza extremists was a legitimate war, necessary to defend its citizens and its territory against sustained attack from beyond its borders.”

The officials then note that Hamas “deliberately and indiscriminately targeted Israeli civilian population centers” through rocket attacks and digging terror tunnels – both of which they conclude are unequivocally considered as “war crimes.” The officials then note that Hamas “deliberately and indiscriminately targeted Israeli civilian population centers” through rocket attacks and digging terror tunnels – both of which they conclude are unequivocally considered as “war crimes.”

The report then contrasts Hamas’s use of human shields with Israel’s attempts to save lives.

“Hamas launched attacks against Israel from the heart of its own civilian communities in Gaza and positioned its munitions and military forces there also, including in schools, hospitals and mosques,” it says. “As well as carefully documented IDF evidence of this, we have viewed international media footage confirming several cases and are aware of senior Hamas officials’ own claims to have used human shields.”

“A recent report by the UN Secretary General confirmed that in some cases Hamas even used UN facilities for storing munitions and launching attacks.”

“Each of our own armies is of course committed to protecting civilian life during combat,” it continued. “But none of us is aware of any army that takes such extensive measures as did the IDF last summer to protect the lives of the civilian population in such circumstances.”
“Our overall findings are that during Operation Protective Edge last summer, in the air, on the ground and at sea, Israel not only met a reasonable international standard of observance of the laws of armed conflict, but in many cases significantly exceeded that standard,” the report concludes. “We saw clear evidence of this from the upper to the lower levels of command.”

“A measure of the seriousness with which Israel took its moral duties and its responsibilities under the laws of armed conflict is that in some cases Israel’s scrupulous adherence to the laws of war cost Israeli soldiers’ and civilians’ lives.”

 

The report also affirmed the Israeli investigated finding that the ratio of Civilian-to-Military casualty ratio was 1:1, well above the world average of 3:1 and far higher than the ratio set as acceptable targeting. The fact that Israel was able to attain such a low ratio was all the more remarkable when one considers that it was the Hamas, Islamic Jihad and other terrorist fighters intent carried through with deliberate actions to place rocket launchers, command and control centers, mortar positions, stores of rockets and ammunitions and other war equipment and manned positions in, on or near to civilian centers, private residences, hospitals, schools, health clinics, refugee centers and other protected structures. There was an actual in use UNRWA (United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East) health clinic which had been evacuated as the fighting inched closer and when a squad of IDF soldiers entered the building it was detonated. Further inspection of the structure and the manner in which it exploded revealed a number of items of concern. First was that the clinic was also concealing multiple entrances to tunnels in its floors and the second and most condemning find was the placement of the explosives which by all measure were found to have been built into the structure as it was erected in anticipation that it could be detonated at some future point during an operation such as Operation Protective Edge. That trap killed three IDF soldiers and injured others. At this point we would like to request you visit the article titled Gaza, Hamas, Corrected Falsehoods, Frightening Realities written on September 15, 2014 which contains additional information and links plus the original use of the video shown below of a Hamas rocket launcher site being set up directly outside the window of a reporter from India who filmed and documented the entire procedure, something for which he would very likely have had an accident had this come to light while he was still reporting from within Gaza. I do not know for sure if he remained in Gaza, but either way, the man had great integrity, nerves of steel, a steadfast standing for truth and a great heart full of love of life. Below is his video and further reporting at link above.

 

 

One Israeli method to clear a rooftop or building which was being used as a launch site on its roof or from numerous balconies or out of windows of which Israeli drones had detected such fire operations they would first, a few minutes before the actual strike, drop small, very loud, fragment-free, low explosive charges which operate as a large flashbang grenade, called knockers as they were the knock on the ‘proverbial door’ before kicking that ‘door’ in, in order to cause the people to flee the structure before it was struck, something unheard of by these reviewing military officers, something considered completely inconsistent with attempts to maximize even the casualties of the combatants as well an civilians. Such a tactic as well as the radio broadcasts, phone calls, leaflet drops, SMS messages to individual phones and other undisclosed methods for warning the civilian population to leave the area and despite it also gave the combatants to flee still allowing for the destruction of the launchers and depriving them of a preferred and planned firing location. Firing locations which have been preplanned have a tactical advantage in that they are in a set point and the operators have a set of dialable targets where the precise settings for the strike are known while taking up a random or alternate location often either forces the operator to make their best computation (often referred to as best guess) and may also place numerous targets beyond reach, blocked due to locations of larger structures or other obstacles. This is the reason such locations need to be eliminated as otherwise enemy combatants can return and continue to utilize their advantageous locations and the firing data. Also included in this report were the three Israeli teens kidnapped and murdered by Hamas operative in Judea and the ramping up of numbers and increased ranging of rockets which inevitably led to the Israeli response. Also noted was the fact that much of the destruction was restricted to within two miles of the Gaza-Israeli border as this was also the location of the majority of the ground fighting which is far more intense and thus the destructive force increases exponentially to the level of opposition and follows the front lines as each side attempts to clear an area in order to advance in comparative safety.

 

The United Nations report from the Human Rights Council (UNHRC) omitted mention of the three Israeli teens kidnapped and murdered and made only minor mention of increased rocket fire both in numbers and ranges and instead concentrated on a few limited points which can be defined by one simple phrase, disproportional force and results. There was little mention of the protective shield that the Iron Dome anti-missile system intercepted well over ninety percent of the rockets fired into Israel in determining by the systems’ computers and radar tracking information where the rocket, mortar or artillery would strike and even higher percentage shoot down of those projectiles computed to be heading to strike within populated areas. This prevented literally tens of thousands of Israeli casualties a majority of which would likely have been fatalities as the Iron Dome did work to almost one-hundred percent of projectiles heading for central Tel Aviv and its skyscraper towers. The Iron Dome system is the perfect example of the price Israel places on individual lives as each anti-missile-missile costs tens of thousands of Shekels and were used to intercept rockets which at most cost hundreds of dollars to make. The main point made repeatedly by the UNHRC report referred to the casualty numbers and basically posed the identical question which many reporters posed during Operation Defensive Edge, where were the Israeli casualties, the Jewish casualties (one reporter was caught asking the exact question of why were there no Jewish deaths while so many in Gaza were killed). The preoccupation with Israeli casualties has reached ghoulish levels and casts the pale of anti-Semitic origins for such a line of reasoning. The answer was easy to see, Iron Dome and the fact that Israel was not only willing but gladly invested the millions of Shekels and thousands and possibly hundreds of thousands of hours and prototypes, testing, writing software code and rewriting when necessary and simply editing (as if editing code is ever simple) and finaly perfecting a system that provided the protection desired, nearly perfect protections and the rest we depended upon the hand of Hashem. The absolute proof was made evident by a multiple miss by an Iron Dome system tasked with protecting Tel Aviv and was tracking a missile headed directly to downtown central Tel Aviv and three intercepts missed before what was insufficient a breeze resulted in the missile being swept aside and out into the Mediterranean Sea where it exploded harmlessly. We covered this report in our article How to Fight Terrorist Fanatics Unless You’re Israel which was published with links on September 26, 2014. Somehow this miraculous incident did not appear in the UNHRC report and also omitted was the purported report that when being asked by a senior Gaza government official (read Hamas commander) how come his rockets were not striking in Israel and killing the Israelis the officer replied, “They keep shooting them down and even when they miss their G0d simply swipes them away harmlessly.”

 

The point driven home by the scant accusations in the document against Hamas are dwarfed to the point of near absence compared to the claims and vile and putrid twisting of the facts in order to convict Israel in the court of anti-Israel and anti-Zionist with potential to classify it as anti-Semitic venomous bile coming from the most base hatreds imaginable. The fact that the initial person selected to be the chair of this investigation was forced to resign because of a proven record of anti-Israeli and anti-Zionist positions and that he was employed by the PLO to render favorable interpretations and provide defense and Jurist William Shabas was replaced with Judge Mary McGowan Davis who was a member of a panel appointed to follow-up on the Goldstone Committee which investigated presumed Israeli infractions in a previous war with Hamas. That report was later revealed for its biases and inaccuracies by the man who sat as the chairman, Judge Richard Goldstone, and who refuted his own report in an article for the Washington Post. One has to believe at some point that the UNHRC has some problems when it comes to all things Israel. One last bit to end on hopefully a slightly brighter note, there was a rumor which I sincerely pray was meant as a joke and not an actual fact that the UNHRC was required by its own bylaws to open every session with a motion denouncing Israel and the discussion would simply be to include the particulars for that denunciation. The only problem such a joke would face is that it might be taken as fact and not one bit of humor be found within.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

June 23, 2015

United Nations Demonization of Israel Backfires

 

United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) has released its self-declared, in-depth, revealing, factual, unbiased, principled and unprejudiced report equating the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) tactics during Operation Protective Edge with the terror-motivated acts by Hamas. Initially the Canadian Jurist William Schabas had been appointed to head the UNHRC committee tasked with investigating Operation Protective Edge to assure that the ensuing report would be transparent, factual and above reproach but was forced to resign that post as he was found to have a long history of anti-Israel invective and had done contract work with the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) terror group among other damning inferences. When interviewed about his feelings over the entire matter of his possibly biased and anti-Israel invectives, part of his response gave particular insight to the validity of the claim that had so referred those shortcomings and to Israeli officials’ denunciations of his appointment, he was quoted to declare, “I wasn’t insulted. To be insulted you need to respect the people who criticize you, and I don’t have respect for them.” Answering the accusations equating his appointment by Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman (Yisrael Beytenu) claiming, This appointment simply “serves to show that even the biggest hypocrites in the international organs cannot ignore the fact that Schabas’ appointment to investigate Israel was akin to the appointment of Cain to investigate the murder of Abel,” William Schabas shot back, “That isn’t worthy of a response. I didn’t murder anyone. Is legal counsel to the PLO a mistake? Is criticizing Netanyahu a crime?”

 

Further research at the time had revealed more transgressions and focused on Prof. William Schabas statements when speaking in a 2013 panel revealed his great eagerness to hold such a position enabling him to prosecute Israel for war crimes stated he holds a “profound belief, that international law can be used to demonstrate and underscore the violations committed by the state of Israel, and moreover can be used to hold accountable individuals who have perpetrated international crimes against the people of Palestine.” He added even if that involved “Years ago there were no courts at all,” he noted (at minute 25:15 in the video embedded below). “When (the charge of) ‘genocide’ was invented there was no court at all. There was no court for crimes against humanity, but we have them now. And with a bit of luck and by twisting things and maneuvering we can get them before the courts.” He also has stated that should he ever have been granted such an opportunity to prosecute Israel, “I would have been inclined to talk about crimes against humanity, war crimes, and the crime of aggression, all of which I think can be shown have been perpetrated at various times during the history of the state of Israel. These are all crimes that have become increasingly robust in their definition in recent decades and for which we now have international institutions capable of prosecuting the crimes.”

William Schabas – Russell Tribunal on Palestine – New York Published on Jan 7, 2013
From Vow to Law: How can Prohibition of Sociocide Become an International Norm?

 

Replacing Jurist William Schabas was, what some, ourselves included, might perceive as an equitable replacement holding many of the same deficiencies as Schabas, Judge Mary McGowan Davis of the 2009 Goldstone Committee fame as she sat in that ‘august and impartial’ tribunal as well which Judge Richard Goldstone who chaired that investigatory inquisition later retracted the report Judge Richard Goldstone wrote on Friday in the Washington Post, “If I had known then what I know now, the Goldstone Report would have been a different document.” Further in his confessitorial article Judge Goldstone wrote, “While the investigations published by the Israeli military and recognized in the U.N. committee’s report have established the validity of some incidents that we investigated in cases involving individual soldiers, they also indicate that civilians were not intentionally targeted as a matter of policy.” Judge Mary McGowan Davis has never shown a single iota of regret nor expressed her feeling that there may have been a motivational bias to the findings of the Goldstone Report committee’s inquiries.

 

This excuse for a report basically goes to whatever extremes that were necessary to denounce Israel, her leadership, and most insulting of all, the IDF of crimes equal or greater than those of the arch terrorists of Hamas whose charter calls for the annihilation of every last Jew on planet earth and the conquest of the planet forcing every inhabitant to not merely believe in Islam, but to do so with the same convictions, hatreds and depravations as do the leadership of Hamas or to die by their sword. Such degrading and damning accusations not only need be refuted and fought with every fiber of muscle and brain available to Israel and her friends but also by those who cherish and honor truth and equality. It is one thing to investigate every conceivable angle as a method of assuring that no stone is left unturned and that every ill intent becomes revealed and a completely different thing to list every imagined criminal act simply to equate those acting purely in defense of their nation and its people with a terrorist groups whose aim is not only to inflict as much harm, structural damage and loss of life on the other side but to also assure that the result is of equal or greater harm, structural damage and loss of life on those who they are presumably defending simply so that it can be claimed that both sides are equally guilty before the courts and committees tasked with the enforcement of international law. The audacity and cold-blooded calculations of Hamas and their allies such as Islamic Jihad and al-Qaeda was revealed during Operation Protective Edge when they reported that the IDF forces had targeted and caused grievous damage to a Gazan hospital when they knew and the IDF had tracked a rocket fired from Gaza, one of four with other three striking in the Mediterranean Sea, the Shati Refugee Camp and Ashkelon in addition to the one striking the Shifa Hospital which was alleged to have been an Israeli strike. We reported this in our article titled How to Spell Hypocrite, US or UN? published on April 28, 2015, along with the tracking picture below depicting the tracks of the four rockets fired from within Gaza by Hamas, Islamic Jihad or another of the other terror groups operating with the blessings of Hamas Security Forces, the so-to-speak law in Gaza.

 

 

Radar Trajectory of barrage launched from within Gaza depicting strike points including the short round strike on the Shifa Hospital which Israel blamed by Hamas and Media accepted Hamas talking point unchecked

Radar Trajectory of barrage launched from within Gaza depicting strike points including the short round strike on the Shifa Hospital which Israel blamed by Hamas and Media accepted Hamas talking point unchecked

 

Perhaps this would be a good time to recall our recent recounting of the report from Professor Stern of Vanderbilt Law School’s content which we had quoted just the other day on June 20, 2015, in our article Coddling Barbarians While Condemning the Civilized
“It was abundantly clear that IDF commanders had gone beyond any mandates that international law requires to avoid civilian casualties. The IDF’s warnings certainly go beyond what the law requires, but they also sometimes go beyond what would be operational good sense elsewhere. People are going to start thinking that the United States and other Western democracies should follow the same examples in different types of conflict. That’s a real risk.” A further conclusion from the report added that the IDF, “is setting an unreasonable precedent for other democratic countries of the world who may also be fighting in asymmetric wars against brutal non-state actors who abuse these laws.” Pnina Sharvit Baruch, a senior researcher at the Institute for National Security Studies (INSS) concurred with the report adding her assessment stating legal advisers from other militaries around the world confront her with “recurring claims” that the IDF “is going too far in its self-imposed restrictions intended to protect civilians, and that this may cause trouble down the line for other democratic nations fighting organized armed groups.”

 

The report from above painted an entirely different picture of the IDF actions than that of the United Nations, not much of a surprise there. Perhaps weighing the targeted aim of the two articles might provide further insight as to which report was objective and which report was objectionable. The report by Professor Stern of Vanderbilt Law School was commissioned and performed to show what was the level of the IDF during Operation Protective Edge and how their standards would impact other Western Nation’s forces when operating in anti-terror interventions under conditions of a similar nature to those of Israel operating against Hamas, Islamic Jihad and even some ISIS and al-Qaeda forces which are rumored to also operate out of Gaza along with Fatah, the political party which Mahmoud Abbas holds the chairmanship, and where the terrorists are hiding amongst innocent civilians and even going to the extreme of using them as human shields, especially using children to guard rocket launchers and mortar launch sites. The United Nations Human Rights Council was investigating and writing a report to satisfy the one-hundred-ninety-three nations voting in the General Assembly where the Arab League is allied with the Non-Aligned National Movement (NAM) which combines to over one-hundred of the General Assembly votes and almost always unite on any article for discussions and vote which either criticizes Israel or elevates the Arab/Muslim countries in return for support for all items viewed favorable by the nations in NAM. The motivations speak for themselves as one side sought only to vilify Israel even at the expense of the terror groups in Gaza who honestly could not care less about what the United Nations may say or do, they are already considered as a terrorist entity so what additional harm could come to them, and the other study wanted to know exactly how stringently the Israeli troops were restricted in their actions against those very same terrorist groups and what they found was fairly frightening for the Western military elite military commanders knowing that much of the same cautionary restrictions utilized by the IDF very well could be expected to define their actions. Imagine the Pentagon having to send a drone to drop leaflets on an intended site ten minutes before using a second drone to launch the attack on the command tent in the midst of the camp and expecting to remove an al-Qaeda commander in the process? I do not recall ever reading that such was their procedure nor do I expect it ever will be. Even when it comes to restrictions that are self-imposed a double standard exists and is imposed by the IDF on the IDF without expecting any other military in the world to have to emulate their precautions.

 

Meanwhile, the usual culprits will laud over the results of this predictably slanted and abusive report which equates the IDF and their tactics and precautions to protect innocents and civilians from harm simply by being in a targeted location at the wrong time with Hamas who regularly all but drapes young children over their rocket launchers. It is exactly as Prime Minister Netanyahu stated on NBC’s Meet the Press, “The difference between us, we are using missile defense to protect our civilians, and they’re using their civilians to protect their missiles.” There is no comparison between the IDF and Hamas and company beyond the simple reality that both are on the same battleground. Equating these opposites is the ultimate in hypocrisy and the culmination of what was the intent when it was decided to open the United Nations from its original membership which included only those nations who were actually capable of enforcing order and principles of civilized behavior and governance to simply any nation caring to apply thus turning the General Assembly into the voice for dictators and terrorists. Who cannot remember Yasser Arafat walking onto the stage before the gathered nations of the General Assembly wearing his usual green fatigues and with his decorative handgun strapped to his side looking like he was recovering from a weekend binge and coming straight there without the comfort of a shower and a shave. That in and of itself speaks to the respect deserved by most of the United Nations agencies, the ever present agencies who have been investigated and almost regularly found to be distributing the food supplies under their care in exchange for sexual pleasures and other equally offensive acts. The United Nations has become such a disgrace that people would be well-advised to hide their daughters and wives when the United Nations is coming to their aid otherwise who knows what depravities will result. Yet these are the people who claim the moral righteousness to sit in judgement of the IDF and United States Armed Forces. Are these two institutions above the occasional but rare misdeeds? Yes, every military, every group has a few bad apples in their barrel, but these two armed services also police their own and honestly investigate charges and have recorded evidence of placing such soldiers found guilty of improprieties in prison and other punishments and their receiving less than honorable discharge from their service, a mark that is inerasable and will follow and dog one for the remainder of their lives. Such a discharge speaks loudly and will prevent such a person from ever receiving the trust of the people in the nation. Perhaps partly it is knowing that if found out one faces such dire results which adds that one extra threat making such misbehavior that rare though I prefer to believe that their military members are that honorable simply because it is the right way to act and to treat others with the same respect they wish to receive.

 

Beyond the Cusp

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