Sunday, April 3, 2011

The Goldstone Wedgie Campaign

By now, most of you have read of the earth-shattering retractions made by Richard Goldstone in the Washington Post, repudiating key findings of a UN sponsored inquiry, which bears his name, into the lawfulness of Israeli military conduct during Operation Cast Lead. The race is on to find quotes by everyone who not so long ago boldly concluded, on the basis of assertions made in the Goldstone Report, that Israel committed war crimes in Gaza by intentionally murdering and terrorizing civilians, that the Goldstone commission performed a fair and unbiased inquiry, that civilian casualties were far greater than claimed by Israel, and so on. Once found, these quotes can and should be used to mount the largest campaign of rhetorical atomic wedgies ever enacted on G-d's green earth.

Oh how very heated were the debates and discussions when those of us who didn’t buy into the blood libel defended Israel and her armed forces against those who not only ate up the accusations (some with considerable relish, if memory serves), but made sure to tear an extra pound of flesh off to advance their own conceited agendas. How could so many well meaning people have been so very wrong? How could so much of the world's intelligentsia have misjudged Israel’s culture so much as to have jumped to the conclusion that her armed forces and the society that bore them would systematically and intentionally murder civilians in cold blood? Who will now retract those comparisons between Gaza and the Warsaw Ghetto, between an Israeli army defending innocent life and an exterminationist Nazi machine hauling off humanity by the trainload to the slaughter? How could (primarily) Israeli "human rights" NGOs mislead the world to such an extent, and will anyone hold them accountable?

Goldstone is a big enough of a man to admit his failure. And let’s not split hairs here. The Goldstone Commission was the peak of this once-upon-a-jurist’s professional life, and he failed, miserably, reprehensibly, in a way that damaged international law, gave sanctuary to terror and advanced global Jew hatred. We knew, even in those difficult days, those of us who stood with Israel, that a day would come when Goldstone would have to atone for much before a global Jewish community he did so much to defame, and the nation which is its heart. Now that he’s begun this process - first by acknowledging his naivete in assuming an equivalence before international law between the democratic nation state of the Jewish people and Palestinian terror factions, and then by retracting his conclusion that Israeli deliberately targeted civilians - it is time to demand that the many others who rode the Goldstone tiger to Israel-bashing glory to join in with their own, searing self-criticism - the kind they had not so long ago demanded of Israel - while the teshuvah (repentance) is still piping hot.

As for you wily, spineless, despicable "we support Israel but never today" pundits and bloggers who brandished the Goldstone Report's revolting conclusions in an indignant, self-righteous crusading panoply of vitriol against the Jewish state, you deserve by far the balance of what righteous wrath remains. Every progressive convention you attend, every social justice outing you participate in, every Israel-related discussion you engage in must be used to reverse the damage you contributed to. The burden of culpability in the greatest smear of recent memory rests on your shoulders most of all, and it is your responsibility to do real justice for the slander you participated in, whenever the opportunity presents itself. You, more than others, will be held accountable if you do not hold yourselves accountable. For wasn't that the advice you offered Israel on the day of her unjust opprobrium?

Will you literary miscreants, who so diminished Israel's legitimacy in fighting back against mass acts of terror, now defend Goldstone as vigorously against charges that he’s capitulated to the right-wing militarist Zionist cabal, as you were two years ago in defending him from charges of pandering to anti-semites and Israel-haters? And now that Israel has been exonerated, and Hamas has been demonstrated by the world's favorite Jurist to be the unrepentant terrorist entity that it is, won't we all finally join in supporting Judge Goldstone’s implicit call for the UN to forward Hamas' “war crimes” and “crimes against humanity” (two separate statutes, in the process of being violated almost daily by Palestinian terror groups) on to the International Criminal Court for adjudication and punishment?

Therefore, in light of all the above, to promote an atmosphere of sincere reflection and poignantly apologetic contemplation, I hereby initiate the Goldstone Wedgie Campaign. And lest I forget, on behalf of all true supporters of Israel, the many bloggers, twitter-ers, facebook-ers commentators, pundits and ordinary people who "put their backs into it" when it counted, who never doubted for a second the justness of Israel's cause, the goodness of her people, and the humanity of her army, because too many of them are far too reserved and diplomatic to say so, boldly and clearly to those who had once barricaded off the path of truth from the scales of justice, in vain...


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