Jewish World Review May 1, 2002 / 19 Iyar, 5762

The U.N. won't investigate
the real tragedy

By Yossi Klein Halevi -- JERUSALEM | The United Nations commission formed to investigate the nonexistent Israeli "massacre" in the West Bank town of Jenin could have been a means for some desperately needed truth-telling about the Middle East conflict.

Instead, given its mandate to focus on Israel's self-defense rather than on the Palestinian terrorism that provoked it, the commission will only confirm that there is no justice to be had in the U.N. for the Jewish state.

The commission won't be investigating how the Palestinian Authority, established and lavishly funded by the international community, abused its sponsors' trust by turning Jenin and other West Bank towns into centers for suicide bomb factories. The commission won't be investigating how Palestinian terrorists used civilian neighborhoods as shields for their death work and Red Crescent ambulances to transport explosives belts into Israeli cities.

The commission won't be investigating the verifiable massacres that have happened here in Israel's cafes and wedding halls, on its street corners and buses.

The commission won't be investigating the role played by Yasser Arafat's official apparatus--his police and militias and intelligence services--in planning, funding and recruiting for the suicide killer operations.

The commission won't be investigating how the internationally recognized leadership of the Palestinian people nurtured a culture of suicide among its young--for example, Arafat's televised plea to G-d to grant him the martyrdom of the suicide bomber who killed 28 Israelis in the Passover massacre, or his wife's public lament that she had no son to offer as a suicide killer.

The commission won't be investigating the cultural infrastructure that made terror possible--the Palestinian textbooks that exclude Israel from the map of the Middle East, the Palestinian media that proclaim that the Holocaust never happened, the Palestinian mosques where preachers invoke G-d's blessing for those who kill civilians.

The commission won't be investigating how donor nations, especially those of the European Union, allowed the Palestinian Authority to sustain a terrorist war for the last 19 months, lavishing funds on a corrupt regime that devotes its budget to building bomb factories rather than hospitals and schools.

The commission won't be investigating the Arab world's culpability in creating the Palestinian refugee crisis by rejecting the U.N.'s own partition plan in 1947 and then maintaining the Middle East conflict by rejecting President Clinton's peace plan that would have created a Palestinian state on almost all the territories and part of Jerusalem.

The commission won't be investigating why much of the world's media rushed to proclaim a massacre in Jenin without evidence, and then appeared disappointed not to find mass graves beneath Jenin's rubble.

Neither will the commission be investigating itself to expose how the U.N. has been hijacked by a coalition of international dictatorships that have singled out Israel, which struggles to maintain democratic norms under permanent siege, as the world body's symbol of evil.

It won't be investigating how a country such as Syria, whose government routinely imprisons opponents and has sponsored the mass murder of its own citizens, is given a seat on the Security Council, to say nothing of its seat on the U.N.'s Human Rights Commission.

And it won't be investigating the U.N.'s neglect of desperate human rights issues such as the occupation of Tibet and of Lebanon and the mass murder and enslavement of black Sudanese.

Those are all issues that have been obscured by the U.N.'s obsessive focus on Palestinian statelessness, which the Palestinians refused to end through negotiation and compromise.

The commission won't be investigating the real tragedy: how the U.N. squandered the dream of a united humanity animated by justice--a dream first offered by the prophets of ancient Israel--and instead joined the unholy coalition of Islamic fundamentalists, far-left moralizers and far-right neofascists in again targeting the Jewish people.

JWR contributor Yossi Klein Halevi is the Israel correspondent for the New Republic and a senior writer for the Jerusalem Report. He is the author of "Memoirs of a Jewish Extremist (Little, Brown) and, most recently, "At the Entrance to the Garden of Eden: A Jew's Search for G-d with Christians and Muslims in the Holy Land." Comment by clicking here.

01/24/02: 'Cycle of Violence' is a Middle East lie
01/10/02: Seized ship is terror wake-up call
12/19/01: Understanding the JDL
12/04/01: Time to end the Arafat charade
11/20/01: Good try, Mr. Powell, but Mitchell Report is fundamentally flawed

© 2002,Yossi Klein Halevi. This article originally appeared in the LA Times.