Reply sent to Milband's standard letter
james36armstrong at hotmail.com
Sun Nov 15 11:40:05 GMT 2009
Mr David Miliband ,
Foreign & Commonwealth Office,
King Charles Street,
London SW1A 2AH 14 November 2009
Dear Mr Miliband ,
Thankyou for your general letter from the NearEeast group not personally addressed, regarding The Goldstone Report..
I note you had a large volume of letters .
That you have “concerns” about the report is to be expected. There is no evidence in your letter that you have concerns about the genocide by the IDF ground troops against Palestinian civilians. Others see the report as only supplementing the overwhelming evidence that the state of Israel violently oppresses civilians and adds even more weight to the need for HMG to act. The action required is to bring about change not to continue to acquiesce by ‘investigating further ‘?.
You state the Israeli ‘right to protect its citizens’ but the Palestinian rights go unmentioned in your letter, rights to their land, to freedom of movement , freedom from bombing in Gaza,, return of refugees , enjoyment of basic rights and to having their rights supported and represented by UN members such as the FCO. of HMG. Otherwise how is the world society to advance?
You attribute rocket attacks to Hamas. All rocket attacks? Why? Do you know of Haganah? Irgun? The Isreali secret police? The historical employment of death squads by the Israeli state suggests another source. What evidence have FCO for the source of rockets which you attribute to Hamas? Were FCO given access to this other crucial information? Are there not enough oppressed Palestinians to retaliate with any means to hand? Why single out Hamas? Ten years ago President Yassar Arafat and P.L.O. were vilified by F.C.O.as Hamas are to-day.Of Likud? Labour Party of Israel? …nothing.
You do not mention daily attacks by armed settlers on unarmed Palestinian residents.
You give no mention to the overwhelming preponderance of rocket fire by I D F from aircraft on civilian targets in Gaza, the widely reported devastation on lives and property caused by the Gaza invasion by the state of Israel, nor continuing (since 1947) refusal to 1.5million Palestinian refugees living in camps abroad of return to their homes.
The term you use, ‘Both sides’ tends to misrepresenting the truth to the extent it is deliberately misleading. Only one 'state', that of Israel is the concern of the international community of states. HMG is uniquely positioned to address the issue at state level, with the government of Israel. You equate individual partisans taking disorganized and random violence with an oppressive nuclear state deploying in a very confined area the modern full range of weapons and armaments and ground troops. This does not tend to win respect from reasonable people for the views set out in your letter. Your letter acknowledges FCO has ‘no contact ‘ with Hamas. This supports the case for HMG acting in the appropriate sphere at government level where it has unrivalled professional contact , against the infringement o f human rights by the Israeli state.
The gross partisanship of the FCO letter writer is apparent.
FCO advances weak arguments for inaction when HMG actively pursues policies and action supporting Israel. .
The ‘way forward’ sugested in your letter, i.e., ‘for more investigation’, disguises the actions (not investigations) HMG is pursuing in another sphere. While HMG speaks and writes of peace, Israel is given enhanced trading privileges with the E.U. and licences to import UK arms.With universal conscription in Israel it is inevitable that Israeli citizens allowed access to UK have been actively oppressing Palestinian civilians. Readily available and appropriate peaceful action is not deployed against Israel yet violent non peaceful action is taken by HMG in invading Afghanistan and Iraq. Any action, sanctions, public condemnation etc which might register on the ground, is not taken by HMG regarding Israel.
The partisanship of the writer of the FCO letter is breathtaking. It would attract derision in a schoolboy's essay. The FCO is apparently so concerned with the detention of one IDF soldier. The detention of 1.5million Palestinian refugees in Lebanon , Syria, and Jordan since 1947 and the refusal of Israel to allow their return is ignored. Has FCO any reason to think that the soldier concerned was not one of those who carried out the IDF supervised attrocities in the Shatila refugee camp or other IDF attrocities?
One wonders to which constituency this standard FCO letter of reply was addressed when one Israeli citizen is named? How many Mohammeds, Ahmeds and Ali’s are detained without trial by the IDF?
What information regarding the names of Palestinian detainees does FCO have?
You may wish to investigate racial discrimination within the FCO.
Would FCO please seek an answers to this and treat this as
a Freedom of Information request?
Repeating the ‘ two state solution’ and ‘comprehensive peace’ mantras, distracts from attention to the need for peaceful action by HMG at state level designed to bring the Israel state into line with civilized standards of behaviour.
To answer your question, your letter is unsatisfactory. It fails to acknowledge the unique role of FCO in acting at state level, is contentious in equating untraced individual rocket attacks with state intervention by IDF and is partisan in isolating the case of one Israeli individual and ignoring completely some thousands of imprisoned Palestinian activists and one and a half million refugees refused the right of return. It savours of racial discrimination
Might I have a reasoned response addressing the specific issues I raise avoiding the use of stock phrases and conducted at an adult level of reasoned argument addressed to the issues raised?
Yours faithfully, James Armstrong
A less superficial approach might be expected from an informed HMG department .
FCO has ‘concerns about the report.
In the context of other overwhelming evidence that years’ long oppression of Palestinians as a people the concerns you have at issues within the document which has UN support, are in appropriate .
The report confirms what is otherwise manifest, that
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