Friday, January 9, 2009

The UN in Israel's sights

The shelling of schools in Gaza caps off a tumultuous relationship between the UN and Israel

Ian Williams, Thursday 8 January 2009

"....The IDF, of course, always behaves as if it is shocked, shocked, that wild firing into the most densely populated territory in the world produces civilian casualties.

But now let us compare international reactions. A Serb mortar shell into the market place in Sarajevo in 1995 led to much-belated Nato and UN intervention against the perpetrators. Here the US that called for that action has, as in 2006 in Lebanon, resisted almost unanimous international calls for a ceasefire, and is now belatedly converted to the idea, albeit hedged around with enough qualifications to keep the blood flowing into Gaza's already overflowing sewers a little longer.

When the US does move, it will almost certainly be, as in Lebanon, to use the UN security council as a fireman's ladder to let Israel get down gracefully from the gory pole it has once again mounted. It is too much to hope that the perpetrators will appear before an international court?

But one can anticipate that even more Israeli politicians and generals will be checking with their lawyers as well as their travel agents before going on any trips abroad."

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