Justice Richard Goldstone spoke at Brandeis University on November 5, with former Israeli UN ambassador Dore Gold, on a program entitled “The Challenge of the UN Gaza Report.” Goldstone, a South African jurist and former prosecutor of International Criminal Tribunals for the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda, headed the UN Fact-Finding Mission on the Gaza Conflict, established by the UN Human Rights Council in April. The Mission’s charge was to ” ‘to investigate all violations of international human rights law and
international humanitarian law that might have been committed at any time in the context of the military operations that were conducted in Gaza during the period from 27 December 2008 and 18 January 2009, whether before, during or after.’ ” The Mission “interpreted the mandate as requiring it to place the civilian population of the region at the centre of its concerns,” and defined the “context” as the period 19 June
2008 to 31 July 2009.
The report notes that the “Mission repeatedly sought to obtain the cooperation of the Government of Israel,” unsuccessfully, which \prevented it from meeting Israeli Government officials” and also “from travelling to Israel to meet Israeli victims and to the West Bank to meet Palestinian Authority representatives and Palestinian victims.” “The Mission has enjoyed the support and cooperation of the Palestinian Authority” and “[d]uring its visits to the Gaza Strip [through Rafah] the Mission held meetings with senior
members of the Gaza authorities and they extended their full cooperation and support to the Mission.” The Mission received evidence from West Bank residents in Amman and from West Bankers and Israelis in Geneva also.2 The Mission released the the final version of its report on September 25. Inevitably, the report’s most severe findings concerned Israel, as best conveyed by excerpts from the Conclusions and Recommendations:
Entire article (PDF with notes) is at Justice Goldstone at Brandeis
CounterPunch, November 16, 2009, Justice Goldstone at Brandeis