The Goldstone Report and reconsideration won’t go away, they are back on the Times front page. A good report by the Times’ Ethan Bronner and Jennifer Medina on why Goldstone did it boils down to, He loves Israel and thought he was going to reconcile the two societies, Palestinian and Jewish, through his report but was oh-so wrong about the politics. A man who says he may have been “naive” about the U.N.’s commitment to evenhandedness seems to have been naive about the Jewish response to his document. Then there are the politics of his family, and his daughter who spent 10 years in Israel. Oh my, what was the Zionist judge thinking? And when is a shul going to stage the war inside the Jewish family? Times:
In trying to understand why he published an essay on April 1 in The Washington Post retracting his harshest accusation against Israel and toughening his stand toward Hamas and the United Nations — an essay that has been rejected by the fellow members of his investigation panel — the South African precedent is important. For Mr. Goldstone, it was the model of how the Gaza report would work. Instead, it helped drive Israeli politics farther to the right, gave fuel to Israel’s enemies and brought no notable censure on Hamas.
“I know he was extremely hurt by the reaction to the report,” said Aryeh Neier, president of the Open Society Foundation, who has known Mr. Goldstone for years and remains close to him. “I think he was extremely uncomfortable in providing some fodder to people who were looking for anything they could use against Israel.”..
Hailed by the Arab world and the anti-Israel left, he has been censured by those with whom he had always identified. One of his two daughters, who spent more than a decade in Israel and now lives in Canada with the man she married here, has been furious with him, according to a family friend; he was nearly unable to attend the bar mitzvah of his other daughter’s son in South Africa…
As he said in an interview with the newspaper The Forward, “I was driven particularly because I thought the outcome might, in a small way, assist the peace process. I really thought I was one person who could achieve an evenhanded mission.”…
The Times piece includes this egregious mischaracterization of the facts, in favor of Israel’s version of events:
One area of disagreement was whether 250 police cadets killed on the first day should be considered fighters. Israel said yes; most others said no.
In November, the Hamas interior minister, Fathi Hamad, told the newspaper Al Hayat that many of the dead were fighters: “It is a fact that on the first day of the war, Israel struck police headquarters and killed 250 members of Hamas and the various factions, in addition to the 200 to 300 operatives from the al-Qassam Brigades. In addition, 150 security personnel were killed.”
The implication was that the 250 cadets were fighters and that the total number of militants killed amounted to some 700. Many sent Mr. Goldstone the update.
BFD. As I have reported here earlier, Goldstone specifically rejected the Hamad #s back in January at Stanford as propaganda, and then embraced them in the Washington Post in April. Why’d he flip on such an essential particular? Pure political pressure, working on his guilty conscience.