Amnesty is a Travesty

The number of AI reports on Jenin number around a dozen. They are all in condemnation of Israel's actions. Not one of them gives any background or the reasons for the incursions. Not one of them utters a word on the 23 Israelis soldiers that also lost their lives.

Angela Bertz,

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צילום: ערוץ 7
On the evening of the 27th of March, Shirli Fried, 21, and her brother Tom, 16, were in good spirits. They were making their way to the Park Hotel in Netanya, Israel, to join their parents and three grandparents. It was the evening of Passover and they were running a little late. Before they could reach the hotel and in one terrible split second, the five most important people in these youngsters' lives had been blown to pieces by a Palestinian homicide bomber. 25 more innocent people were murdered and 150 had been injured, some of them critically.

It was one of the worst and most barbaric terrorist attacks Israel had ever suffered. Many of the elderly people killed had survived the Holocaust and out of the ashes of Europe had come to Israel to build good, honest lives for themselves, their children and their children's children.

It came in a month when there had been 15 other such attacks. In fact March 2002 was the worst month of terrorism that Israel had ever suffered.

One would have thought that after so many heinous acts, Amnesty International, which claims to be "Protecting Human Rights Around the World", would have issued 16 reports condemning each and every one of these terrible acts of Palestinian terrorism. In fact, AI issued only one report and even though it pertained to the Park Hotel slaughter, the heading "Deliberate Killing of Civilians is Never Justified" was pretty benign and totally belied the atrocity of this appalling act. The three short paragraphs was almost non-committal. While apparently recognizing the massacre as "a grave breach of the fundamental principle of international humanitarian law", Amnesty then refuse to call Hamas a terrorist organization, but made a pathetic plea to "armed Palestinian groups" to cease killing civilians.

Shortly after those attacks, Israel launched "Mission Defensive Shield".

The Israeli army used foot soldiers to carry out house-to-house searches in the town of Jenin, which had long served as a center for training and sending homicide bombers into Israel. No aircraft was used out of concern for the large civilian population in the area. During this military operation, Israel suffered the loss of 23 of its soldiers, who encountered armed Palestinians and booby-trapped homes in many of the narrow alleys. The consequent outcry about this mission, reported as having caused hundreds of innocent Palestinian civilian deaths and described in some media outlets as "comparable to Stalingrad", has long gone down in the annals of military mythology. But the Palestinians milked the supposed slaughter literally to death, including a farcical movie called Jenin, Jenin.

The number of Palestinians killed in Jenin has been placed officially at 56. Most of them were found to be combatants.

Amnesty made it to Jenin in mid-April. Incredibly, and despite the fact that Israel never used any of its aircraft in this region, "scores of refugees" were interviewed by AI and described "massive bombardments with missiles from Apache helicopters."

The number of AI reports on Jenin number around a dozen. They are all in condemnation of Israel's actions. Not one of them gives any background or the reasons for the incursions. Not one of them utters a word on the 23 Israelis soldiers that also lost their lives.

It is blatantly clear that the Amnesty International organization spends a disproportionate amount of its time preparing inflammatory reports aimed at Israel, many times simply bleating the official and biased views of that Den of Iniquity, the United Nations.

Amnesty refers to Israel as "Israel/Occupied Territories". No other country is singled out for such a derogatory title. In fact, with 404 reports, behind only the United States with 1,178 reports, Colombia with 499 reports and Indonesia with 409 reports, few other countries have received such attention. The Palestinian Authority, corrupt to its core, with the worst abuse record against its children in the world, has only 167. This is a disgrace, considering that the PA has committed or allowed over 100 suicide attacks against Israel, lynchings, shootings by the score... And who in Israel will ever forget the brutal killing in May 2004 of 13 young soldiers, blown to pieces while trying to destroy tunnels in Gaza used to smuggle ammunition? We had to watch as the soldiers' dignity was abused beyond anything humanly acceptable by Gazan ghouls, who raced with joy through the streets with blown up body parts. The Gazans even commandeered an UNRWA ambulance, hoping to extract painful concessions from Israel for the return of the blown up body parts. Where is the AI report condemning this cannibalistic act?

The savage murder of a pregnant mother and her four little daughters appears under Israel and not where it firmly belongs under the PA section. The Palestinians have faced a report less than 10 times for their homicide attacks on innocent Israelis, yet they have committed over 100 attacks. Maybe AI has not had the time to bring so many gross infringements of human rights up to date.

I used to respect Amnesty.

However, that was before I read through many of its reports on this region. I have sadly discovered that in many cases, it is about as one-sided, historically inaccurate and lacking in balance as the UN.

For instance, AI refers to "Occupied Palestinian Territory" as if such a notion ever existed. The Palestinians have never owned or ruled any region in this area. In fact, they are nothing more than a modern, mythical invention. They barely existed as a legitimate identity, let alone a nation, prior to 1967, when Israel was attacked by all its neighbours. During that aggressive war, Israel repelled the attackers and conquered the West Bank and Gaza from Jordan and Egypt respectively. According to international law, this makes both these regions Israeli and certainly not as AI deems fit to describe them: "Israel/Occupied Territories". Amnesty may wish to take that into account the next time it quotes either the Palestinian propaganda or, as I found in many of Amnesty's reports, ridiculous statements issued by either the biased Arab League or the morally defunct UN organization.

I would like to make one more point before I conclude, and this refers to the following repugnant statement I found in one of Amnesty's recent press releases: "Both the Israeli Defense Force (IDF) and Palestinian armed groups show an utter disregard for the lives of children and other civilians, Amnesty International said today."

Such a statement is beyond all contempt.

To compare a humane country like Israel, that teaches its children to respect and rejoice in the dignity of human life, with a society that has incited its people and especially its children in hatred 24/7 is nothing short of blasphemous.

To make any moral equivalence between people that have for four years deliberately targeted innocent Israeli civilians in restaurants and buses and a sovereign state that has been forced to defend itself against these attacks shows an appallingly flippant disregard for and ignorance of the conflict.

The Palestinians have created a death cult and have for years systematically indoctrinated their children, often using them as decoys, knowing full well Israel's abhorrence at killing children. In any given situation of combat, innocent people, including children, will be killed, but the PA openly calls for their children to congregate in dangerous areas. They are deliberately and systematically encouraging the next generation of homicide bombers. Young minds are brainwashed to believe not in any hope for the future and what they can achieve through tolerance, but that their biggest accomplishment in life will come only in their death.

It saddens me to think that the Amnesty International organization, like many others, has simply become a feeble-minded apologist for Palestinian terrorism.




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