Is Tzipi Livni Evil, or Just Stupid?
Posted by jonathanfryer on Friday, 2nd January, 2009
‘There is no humanitarian crisis in the [Gaza] Strip,’ Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni said in Paris yesterday, ‘and therefore there is no need for a humanitarian truce.’ I imagine the Germans said the same thing about the Jews in the Warsaw Ghetto during the Second World War. I wonder how Ms Livni squares her statement with the recent verdict of the UN’s Special Rapporteur for human rights in the Palestinian Territories, Richard Falk, that ‘Israel is commiting a shocking series of atrocities by using modern weaponry against a defencless population — attacking a population that has been enduring a severe blockade for several months.’ At least 60 of the approximately 400 fatalities so far in the Israeli assault have been Palestinian civilians, including children, but apparently for Tel Aviv they do not matter. They’re not Jews.
I deplore the rocket attacks on Israel by Palestinian militants and it is essential that some mechanism be found whereby these can be stopped. But turning Gaza into an enormous ghetto and then bombarding it, as Israel has done, is not the solution. It can only make things worse. I applaud the fact that several human rights groups inside Israel have called on the government to ease the blockade — for example, by allowing a resumption of the supply of industrial diesel, so hospitals and other vital institutions can function normally, thereby reducing yet more unnecessary deaths. And I welcome the fact that in Israel, it is possible for such human rights groups and dissident voices to exist and to speak out.
However, the Israeli government is quite clearly commiting a war crime against the civilian population of Gaza and needs to be brought to book. Tzipi Livni and other political leaders who aspire to be Israel’s next Prime Minister must realise that, surely? Which invites the question, are they evil or just stupid?