B’nai B’rith Dismayed by U.N. Secretary-General Calling Israel’s Operations Against Hamas “Atrocious,” Calls for Action on UNRWA School Rockets
B’nai B’rith International is dismayed by U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s comments calling Israel’s defensive operation against Hamas “atrocious” upon arriving in the Middle East to pursue a ceasefire between the two sides.
In response to the secretary-general’s words, B’nai B’rith International President Allan J. Jacobs, Executive Vice President Daniel S. Mariaschin and Director of United Nations and Intercommunal Affairs David J. Michaels wrote a letter to Ban: “We submit that this characterization is disconnected from the complex reality of facts on the ground—and that the repeated subjection of Israel to a double standard in freedom to protect its citizens, and the singling out of Israel for unjust condemnation, does not help, but rather hinders, the goal of preventing new bloodshed.”
B'nai B'rith agrees with the secretary-general that the “status quo ante” is unsustainable and that peace, of course, is the desired objective. However, the letter to Ban points out, “the ultimate ‘root cause’ of Arab-Israeli conflict is not Israel, which accepts in word and deed the rights of its neighbors, but increasingly lethal terrorist groups like Hamas, which openly, violently and doctrinally reject a two-state solution and Israel’s right to exist at all.”
B'nai B'rith noted the rockets found in a U.N. Relief and Works Agency-run (UNRWA) school in Gaza and Ban’s lack of public comment on the discovery, as well as a failure to account clearly for the manner in which the weapons were handled after removal from the school: “When will this be personally and publicly condemned by you as atrocious? Most shocking, there has been no indication that the rockets were not again made accessible to terrorist elements in Gaza by UNRWA. This scandalous development demands your personal attention and accounting, as it is unimaginable that a United Nations agency might be complicit in directly, as a result of its recklessness, threatening the lives of Israeli and Palestinian children alike.”
Read the full letter here.