It seems like the party's over. Back on May 28, following the defeat of the Tamil Tigers terrorist group by the Sri Lanka government, the UN Human Rights Council was all smiles and congratulations:
...Condemning all attacks that the LTTE (Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam) launched on the civilian population and its practice of using civilians as human shields, Reaffirming its commitment to promoting international co-operation, as set forth in the Charter of the United Nations, in particular Article 1, paragraph 3, as well as relevant provisions of the Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action adopted by the World Conference on Human Rights on June 25 1993 for enhancing genuine co-operation among Member States in the field of human rights,
Recognizing that the promotion and protection of human rights should be based on the principle of co-operation and genuine dialogue and aimed at strengthening the capacity of Member States to comply with their human rights obligations for the benefit of all human beings,
Welcoming the conclusion of hostilities and the liberation by the Government of Sri Lanka of tens of thousands of its citizens that were kept by the LTTE against their will as hostages, as well as the efforts by the Government to ensure safety and security for all Sri Lankans and bringing permanent peace to the country;
Welcoming further the recent reassurance given by the President of Sri Lanka that he does not regard a military solution as a final solution, as well as his commitment to a political solution with implementation of the 13th Amendment to bring about lasting peace and reconciliation in Sri Lanka, [emphasis added]
Back then, the UN Human Rights Council had no problem pointing out--and condemning--attacks on civilians and the use of human shields by the Tamil Tigers.
As far as they were concerned, it was a happy ending.
End of story--almost.
Not everyone shared the UNHRC's enthusiasm. The Times responded:
Sri Lanka claimed a propaganda victory last night after the United Nations Human Rights Council passed a resolution praising its defeat of the Tamil Tigers and condemning the rebels for using civilians as human shields.
China, India, Egypt and Cuba were among the 29 developing countries that backed a Sri Lankan-proposed resolution describing the conflict as a “domestic matter that doesn’t warrant outside interference”. The resolution also supported Colombo’s insistence on allowing aid group access to 270,000 civilians detained in camps only “as may be appropriate”.
...Sri Lanka, unable to stop the Human Rights Council taking up its case, rushed its own motion to the floor in time to beat a more censorious resolution tabled by Switzerland.
And even the NGO's spoke up:
“The vote is extremely disappointing and is a low point for the Human Rights Council. It abandons hundreds of thousands of people in Sri Lanka to cynical political considerations,” Amnesty International said.
...Tom Porteous, the London director of Human Rights Watch, said: “The Human Rights Council had a chance to prove itself by calling for a serious inquiry into violations of the laws of war and human rights abuses in Sri Lanka, and they failed dismally.”
Considering the pressure and discontent at the Human Rights Council stand, it was only a matter of time before they reversed themselves:
UN proposes Goldstone-type mission to investigate Sri Lanka war crimesSo where does that leave Sri Lanka, now faced with a Goldstone-style fact-finding investigation?
Following the release of U.S. State Department's report that detailed alleged war-crimes committed by Sri Lanka's protagonists towards the end of war, conducted under Colombo imposed blackout, spokesperson for the U.N. High Commissioner of Human Rights, Rupert Colville, said Friday that an inquiry similar to one that looked into fighting in Gaza may be needed to determine if war crimes were committed in Sri Lanka in the final weeks of the war. Brad Adams of HRW had earlier said "[g]iven Sri Lanka's complete failure to investigate possible war crimes, the only hope for justice is an independent, international investigation." Sri Lanka rejected the report as "unsubstantiated and devoid of corroborative evidence."
Will Sri Lanka unite with Israel, which has already pointed out numerous factual and legal issues with the Goldstone Report, in addition to the obvious biases?
Not if this article in the Sri Lanka Guardian is any indication:
It is indeed a bizarre state of affairs when the US secretary of State Hilary Clinton accuses the Sri Lankan military forces of war crimes and remains passive and silent and makes every effort to prevent the Israelis from being hauled before the International Criminals Court for war crimes in Gaza, such attitudes and actions have incensed the people of the world and hatred for the Obama administration grows by the day. All the Obama euphoria has evaporated and in Afghanistan a creeping Vietnam syndrome is gathering with Pakistan becoming slippery and Iraq again sliding into anarchy. Despite the war on terror, the US and its allies have not succeeded, in fact terror has grown and is growing.Sri Lanka, which apparently manipulated their original positive HRC resolution seems likely to tow the line when it comes to Israel. After all, they know who the real outcast is in the UN--and their best chance at defending themselves is to distance themselves from Israel and go it alone.
Sri Lanka is the only country in the world that has put down terror. We expected plaudits and cheers for this success, but the US and its allies are openly down playing the victory with inane charges of rape, war-crimes and abuse of human-rights. Now the Sri Lankans can clearly see the unmasked face of the ugly American clearly.
Coming back to Israel the great friend of the US despite irrefutable evidence, Israel rulers, civilians and military-stubbornly maintain they have done nothing wrong and the Palestinians are to blame for whatever misfortune has befallen them. A series of reports have confirmed that war crimes were committed in Gaza. If there are war crimes there must be war criminals, and they must be accountable and punished as Gordon Levy wrote in the Israeli daily
“ Ha’aretz” “ This is the harsh conclusion to be drawn from the detailed United Nations report” produced by Justice Richard Goldstone of South Africa.
Justice Goldstone is a Jew and a self-confessed Zionist and supporter of Israel, hence he cannot be accused of anti-Semitism, a standard allegation hurled by Israelis at anyone criticizing their murderous ways. Every report on Gaza has given identical details: prolonged and illegal siege; illegal use of white phosphorous on civilian population, deliberate targeting and killing of innocent civilians; destruction of infra-structure- homes, schools and hospitals. These constitute war crimes and crimes against humanity as enunciated in the International Humanitarian Law. Apart from the UN report the whole worlds saw it in their television screens and were horrified at the cruelty of the Israelites.
There is no escaping the fact that the Zionist rulers are war criminals and those in the US and its allies that support Israel are accessories to war crimes. Let us name names Israel and others: Ehud Olmert, Ehud Barak, Gabi Ashkenazi, George Bush, Barack Obama, Hilary Clinton, Nicholas Sarkozy and Gordon Brown and the rest of rulers of the complicit countries in the West.
...Not to condemn Israel of war crimes in Gaza and falsely accuse Sri Lanka of war crimes without evidence is a horrendous crime in itself. Hilary Clinton’s image as a promising politician has been shattered beyond repair.
Crossposted on Soccer Dad