On Thursday, February 28, a commission of inquiry (UN Commission of Inquiry – COI) presented a report on the riots along the border between Gaza and Israel since March 30, 2018. The report claims that “Israeli soldiers have committed crimes against international human rights and humanitarian law. , which could be war crimes or crimes against humanity (“crimes against humanity”).
The report was commissioned by the controversial UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC), which is notorious for being biased against Israel (see, for example, Anders Samuelsen’s statement from earlier this week).
The independent Israeli research institution and watchdog, NGO Monitor (NGOM), has reviewed the report and slaughtered it.
NGOM points to several methodological errors in the report. Here are some of them:
- Contrary to professional standards for research, the COI has undoubtedly had a predetermined conclusion and collected only “evidence” that fits in to highlight the desired result.
- The report is mainly based on Palestinian sources, which include Hamas and other non-governmental terrorist organizations (NGOs).
- The report is based on anonymous and unverifiable “testimony”. During the press conference on 28 February, the COI could not answer how many of the 325 interviews in the report they conducted themselves.
- The information in the published summary is essentially a “copy-paste” of what these organizations have submitted to the COI. For example, all the names of the killed Palestinian children are taken directly from the Defense for Children International-Palestine (DCI-P) , an NGO with ties to the terrorist group PFLP (People’s Front for Palestine). release). The PFLP is – like Hamas – a party to the riots.
In addition to many methodological errors, the report also minimizes Palestinian violence, omitting almost everything about Palestinian terrorism.
- The COI writes very little about the scale of Palestinian violence along the Gaza border and about Hamas’ leading role in organizing the attacks. NGOM and others have extensive evidence of the use of violence along the border – including weapons, Molotov cocktails, stones, burning tires and the like (read here about the many crimes committed by the protesters and their leaders). In addition, NGOM recently reported on child abuse (read here about Hamas’ payment of children if they go ahead and get injured in the riots). The COI ignores and minimizes the violence, referring to the riots as “peaceful protests”.
- COI deliberately focuses on five of the places where the riots took place. This means that COI ignores the broader context, including that certain actions are used to divert attention to other attacks performed simultaneously. In addition, they do not focus on military attacks, shootings and other violence that occurred at other times, especially at night.
- Although the COI acknowledges that terrorist organizations were involved in the activities along the border, they are doing something as absurd as insisting that “these armed wings” were not represented in the planning. “Especially in Gaza, it is completely pointless to try to distinguish between “armed wing” and other parts of terrorist groups.
- The COI launders Hamas statements about their role in the unrest. They ignore, among other things, that Hamas, Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ), PFLP and other terrorist groups themselves have said that most of those killed were members of their organizations. And this also applies to someone as young as 16-year-old Ahmad al-Shaer, who was a member of Islamic Jihad.
Finally, NGO Monitor points to the report’s unfounded conclusions.
- The COI claims that Israel deliberately shot children, health workers, journalists and the disabled, and that the soldiers were fully aware of this when they shot. It is unclear how the COI can know anything about the intentions of the IDF soldiers or about what information they had before the decision was made to shoot.
- For example, one of the disabled is identified as deaf. Of course, an Israeli soldier across the border cannot know that the person is deaf.
NGO Monitor believes that COI does not have the necessary legitimacy at all.
- COI’s work is characterized by a lack of transparency and accountability. They were granted $ 1.5 million (approximately $ 9.8 million) to prepare the report. But there is no reporting on how the money was spent. There is no information about the staff and their consultants, which makes it impossible to check their professional qualifications.
- COI was created by the infamous UN Human Rights Council. The council is controlled by dictatorships and authoritarian regimes – in addition to being notorious for being extremely anti-Israel. COI’s work can not be said to be a genuine “study”, but an attempt to “justify” pre-agreed conclusions – and the justifications are taken directly from NGOs whose credibility is low. Thus, these NGOs are apparently meant to be given a boost of legitimacy by virtue of COI being their mouthpiece.
None of the members of the COI have expertise in international law or military operations. So it is not surprising that the COI refers to international humanitarian law, without acknowledging that the riots were in fact – and are – acts of war. They even claim that “the demonstrations were basically civilian, and despite some acts of great violence, they did not constitute fighting or a military campaign”. This can only be claimed if one has no knowledge whatsoever about asymmetric warfare, which is precisely the kind of warfare used by terrorist groups such as Hamas, the PIJ and the PFLP.
Conclusion: This is yet another attack on Israel using pseudo-investigations similar to other attempts to attack via pseudo-investigations, as in the infamous “Goldstone report” from 2009.
Comment from the MIFF – DK editorial staff …
The report will be officially presented at the UNHRC meeting on 18 March. There is an opportunity to protest … see here
Further analysis in English
“IDF: Gaza Border Events: Questions Answers” – a great resource!
“UN disgraces itself; accuses Israel of ‘war crimes’, ignores Hamas terror at Gaza border” – major article by CUFI 28 February 2019, with truths about what is actually going on at the border – and provides examples of media coverage and political reactions, such as is completely wrong demarcated. With lots of pictures and video clips.
NGO Monitor: “Gaslighting Gaza: Initial Analysis of UN Commission of Inquiry on Gaza Riots” (28 February 2019 – main source for this article).
“Flagrant Examples of Bias in Latest UNHRC Report On Gaza March of Return Riots” – “Aussie Dave” 28 February 2019. Highlights and analyzes particular glaring allegations.
“Report of the Independent UN Commission of Inquiry on the Gaza Strip – An Initial Evaluation of a Problematic Report.” Amichai Cohen, 7 March 2019. Just Security.
NGO Monitor: “Inconvenient Truths for the UN: Analysis of Information Ignored by the 2019 Commission of Inquiry on Gaza” 7 March 2019. The article lists publicly available information which proves that Israel’s actions have been legal – and which the COI has omitted.
“The UN Human Rights Council Report on Israel’s Response to the Gaza Border Riots – Another biased, malevolent, and unprofessional UN report” Alan Baker, 11 March 2019, JCPA.
“PALESTINIAN MEDIA WATCH BLASTS UN CLAIMS ISRAEL TARGETS GAZA CHILDREN”. Maayan Jaffe-Hoffman. Jerusalem Post. 17 March 2019. UNHR should reprimand those who abuse children as combatants!
“Experts Reveal Lies: UN Knew of Terrorist Activity on Gaza Border, but Did Not Report It”. JNS News Service 23 March 2019.
And a little more in Danish: Read here about the half-truths and whole lies about the Gaza riots, which the COI unconsciously passes on