Britain pledges continued support for Goldstone report against Israel, even as Goldstone retracts allegations

Robin Shepherd’s new online magazine, The Commentator, has just gone live, and today’s lead story, on the appalling decision by the UK Foreign Office to continue their support for the Goldstone Report even after Goldstone retracted its most serious allegation, is well worth the read:

UK Foreign Secretary William Hague

The British Government is standing by the United Nations Goldstone Report alleging that Israel committed “war crimes” in its Operation Cast Lead in Gaza in December 2008 and January 2009 even though Justice Richard Goldstone has now distanced himself from his report’s most controversial conclusions.

On Friday, Goldstone wrote a piece in the Washington Post in which he stunned diplomats, politicians and analysts by withdrawing the allegation that Israel had deliberately targeted civilians during the 22-day conflict. He said: “If I had known then what I know now, the Goldstone Report would have been a different document.”

The Foreign Office, however, confirmed its continued support for investigations into Cast Lead and said it did not want to see the withdrawal of the Goldstone Report from the United Nations.

“Justice Goldstone has not made such a call, and he has not elaborated on his views surrounding the various other allegations contained in the report, allegations which we firmly believe require serious follow-up by the parties to the conflict,” a Foreign Office spokesman told the Commentator on Monday evening.

In his piece, entitled “Reconsidering the Goldstone Report on Israel and War Crimes”, Goldstone admitted that it was now clear that “civilians were not intentionally targeted as a matter of policy”. With reference to evidence provided by Israel, he added: “…I regret that our fact-finding mission did not have such evidence explaining the circumstances in which we said civilians in Gaza were targeted, because it probably would have influenced our findings about intentionality and war crimes”.

Read the rest of the story, here.

20 replies »

  1. This UK government will be remembered as the one that took hypocrisy and spinelessness to levels untold of. Grotesque.

  2. Does the British Foreign Office really have nothing more serious to concern themselves with…..does it process events in real time? How about the bombing of Libya by NATO members (the UK for one)to support the hapless rebels—some of whom are reported to be Al Quaida?

    Still supporting the Goldstone Report commissioned by a discredited UN council which claims Libya & Syria as members?….Of all the things the UK has to comment about, this is it? Slipping into complete irrelevance.

  3. Frankly unbelievable. What would Goldstone have to do to convince them – show a video on-line of him burning a copy?

  4. AKUS, unfortunately it’s entirely believable. We are talking of a Foreign Office which probably has Islamist sympathisers at its highest level, a country in which the police force has been decimated by cuts and which would be terrified of any sort of Muslim backlash, and yet is deluded enough to think that it is still among the world powers!

    And of course William Hague is Foreign Minister. On Twitter he condemns left, right and centre, but yet still believes the lies in the Goldstone report. I’ll bet he still believes in Santa Claus too, the idiot.

  5. The UK itself is involved in a war. I wonder how easily a malicious investigator with sufficient incentive could find or invent a whole list of war crimes that the UK is guilty of.

    The New Testament warning that you should take care of the beam in your own eye before you remark on the speck of dust in someone else’s applies very much here.

  6. Overall, this really does paint the UK Foreign Office the perfect caricature of the smug self righteous Brit who is concerned about a report on one country’s war while it bombs the cr*p out of another country. I wonder if these diplomats are hoping that after the smoke clears in Libya/Afghanistan this political posturing will offset the havoc that their actions will have left behind to the Arab/Muslim world?

  7. They just make themselves sound so stupid. “We know it’s not true but we’re going to act on it anyway!.

    No wonder Hague looks miserable and aged.

  8. This is a bit stream of consciousness, but I wonder whether Elmer Phudd’s hesitation about calling for the UN to discount the Goldstone Lies has anything to do with the UK’s continued leaning towards talking to Hamas?

    If our Elmer agrees with all the sane people that Goldstone is an amoral creep and his report is so much garbage, then the UK govt might be accused of being anti-Hamas (which heaven forfend).

  9. People can tweet the Foreign Office @foreignoffice and William Hague himself @williamjhague to ask him why he beieves lies.

  10. Yohoho

    The UK in the main thinks Israel is like Northern Ireland. That’s what the talking to Hamas is about.

    It was a different story of course when Livingstone tried to import IRA members to talk to us.

  11. Ariadne

    And of course, N. Ireland is held up as an example f what Israel and the WB should be like.

    Unfortunately, it is proving to be exactly what Israel and the WB might be like if Israel does not look after its own interests now that the bombing campaign in N. Ireland has restarted.

  12. Why am I not surprised?

    When were the Brits ever interested in the truth. They betrayed the Jews so many times.

    Why is this time different?

  13. AKUS, it was expected that there would be what’s called “low-level terrorism” despite the peace agreement.

    And US dollars funded a lot of the terrorism.

    It isn’t and can’t be the best of situations but there are a couple of similarities to the Israeli situation which are not things anyone official ever mentions.

    One, it was thought that the Catholics would be a demographic time-bomb with a majority growing after 2000. It hasn’t happened.

    Two, the South doesn’t want the North. Just as all those Arab countries don’t want Palestinians.

  14. Having so deftly got us into a lose / lose situation over Libya, the FCO understandably feels it has to tiptoe, nay levitate, over every hump in every camel-shaped sensibility and dispense our easily affordable £650m bribes to like-minded failed states, for instance those choosing to spend billions on rocketry, nuclear “research” and political devolution in Afghanistan. I’m sure we all sympathise with the FCO’s predicament over Goldstone and recognise that it’s nothing more than the warmth of one’s feelings that makes the difference between justice and “just ice”. So c’mon Israel, get with the programme, forget the milk and honey and get that gas and oil flowing, then we’ll let you play Lawrence of Arabia, too!