WASHINGTON – Jewish-American legalist, Prof. Alan Dershowitz accused Judge Richard Goldstone, the author of the UN report investigating Operation Cast Lead, of dodging an intellectual confrontation with him and of choosing to speak with relatively less incisive interviewers in order to spread lies against the Israeli government.
In a conversation with Ynet, Dershowitz claimed that Goldstone preferred to give interviews to public television over debating him. Dershowitz said that it isn't appropriate for Goldstone to filter whom he debates, saying that he chose to speak with Bill Moyers and People magazine, but refused to sit at the same table as him.
Dershowitz, a Harvard University law professor who gained fame through a number of highly publicized court cases, including that of OJ Simpson, invited Goldstone to a debate on the home turf of the report's author in front of his students at Fordham University, where he is a visiting lecturer. Goldstone turned down the invite.
Judges are not above the law or morality
Dershowitz said that he tried to confront Goldstone, but that Goldstone clearly showed that he is uninterested in debating people who have access to information and have read his report meticulously and with a critical eye. Dershowitz, not hiding his dismay with Goldstone, said that the judge used very poor judgment, and noted that judges are not above the law or morality, and nor are they above criticism or debate.
Dershowitz demanded that Goldstone provide explanations of the sources that led him to his final conclusion in the report, which asserted that Israel's policy in Operation Cast Lead was to kill as many Palestinian civilians as possible.
Dershowitz said that this is an utter lie and that Goldstone must be ashamed for coming to such a conclusion, saying that while Goldstone now denies such allegations in interviews, this indeed is the bottom line of the report written plainly in black and white.
The world-renowned legalist expressed his dismay for the wave of court cases issued against senior Israeli military and political officials in Europe on the backdrop of the Gaza offensive.
According to him, it is absurd that some like Ehud Barak, who, in his words, tried to bring peace and give the Palestinians a state, is currently under threat of being arrested in London while Hamas' Khaled Mashaal can roam the city's streets free of concern. He said that something is deeply wrong with international law and order when such is the case.
However, Dershowitz said that he does not expect Israel to suffer much damage in the US following the report. He asserted that the Americans understand that the Human Rights Council is a farce and its conclusions not taken too seriously. Dershowitz claimed that Israel can breath easily in academic circles as well, saying that students in the US can think for themselves and will not believe that Israel decided intentionally to kill Palestinian civilians.
About two months ago, Dershowitz contacted Barak in a bid to help Israel quash the Goldstone Report, continue fighting terrorist organizations, and protect IDF officers in the legal arena. The Barak's office reported that Dershowitz provided the names of four American international lawyers to join the legal forum Barak is forming for just this purpose.