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Fathi Hamad’s figures are in striking contrast to those originally issued by Palestinian groups which claimed that only 48 combatants were killed and that the total amounted to a mere 17 percent of all fatalities.
Because it uncritically accepted the original Hamas claims of very few combatant deaths, the Goldstone Report was able to reach its flawed conclusion that the purpose of the operation must have been to kill civilians, not combatants. This is what the Goldstone Report said:
“The Mission notes that the statistics from non-governmental sources are generally consistent. Statistics alleging that fewer than one out of five persons killed in an armed conflict was a combatant…raise very serious concerns about the way Israel conducted the military operations in Gaza. The counterclaims published by the Government of Israel fall short of international law standards.”
Now that the truth has been admitted by the Hamas leadership—that as many as 700 combatants were, in fact, killed—the Goldstone Commission is obliged to reconsider its false conclusion and correct its deeply flawed report.
Richard Goldstone himself has repeatedly said that he hoped that new evidence will prove his conclusions wrong. Well, this new evidence—a classic admission against interest—does just that!
The original false figures have also been submitted by the Palestinian Authority to the International Criminal Court. It too has an obligation to correct the record. It would be an outrageous miscarriage of justice for the International Criminal Court to open an investigation of a nation that, in actuality, had the best ratio of combatant to civilian deaths in any comparable war.
The admission by Fathi Hamad that Israel’s figures were correct and those originally offered by Palestinian groups were false exposes the rush to judgment against Israel that has stained the so-called “human rights” community so often in the past. It is essential that this new evidence be widely circulated, which it has not been to date, and that those who condemned Israel on the basis of false allegations correct the record. Don’t hold your breath! In today’s distorted world of “human rights,” truth takes a back seat to ideology, and false claims—especially those that “support” radical ideologies—persist even after they have been exposed.
Professor Alan Dershowitz’s latest book is a novel, The Trials of Zion.
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