Lavinia Moore (SA) responds to article by Rubin and Shaik in The Australian, 20 & 23Oct09 October 23, 2009

“I refer to the letters/opinion pieces by Barry Rubin ( 20/10/2009) and Michael Shaik (23/10/2009).

I wonder if Mr Rubin is reading the same Goldstone report that I am. Or is it that even a hint of criticism of Israel signifies that, in his eyes, the critic must be biased, anti-semitic or a supporter of terrorism?

Supporters of Israel sadly often seem to be driven by a need to suppress alternate views, a practice more akin to those regimes and ideologies that brook no opposition.

Denigration of all those who disagree with your point of view is a sign of unthinking desperation. But suppression of the truth, or of attempts to determine the truth and the facts is tyranny. Nothing less.

The passage of the UN resolution related to the investigation of allegations of war crimes committed by those involved in Gaza in December-January is going to be necessary if the world is to be permitted to emerge out of the darkness created by the advent of GW Bush’s time as president.

President Obama does have to act. But not by hiding amid the distortions of the previous regime that saw itself and the country it represented as the world’s saviour, and all of those who opposed it and anything it demanded as evil.  Such polarising or dichotomising of the world’s people can only ever lead to further conflict.

Obama needs to start leading his people to seeing “us” in “them” and “them” in “us”. One way to do that is to do as Mr Shaik suggests. Not to veto any resolutions related to advancing investigations based on the Goldstone report and not to behave in ways that indicate that he too thinks that the Universal Declaration of Human Rights still does not apply to the Palestinians.

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