Friday, July 19, 2002

Well, slap me silly and call me Martha! After years of moral equivocation, Amnesty International has finally condemned Palestinian terrorism -- and in no uncertain terms. Israel Insider reports:
For the first time, Amnesty International has released a comprehensive review of Palestinian attacks against Israeli citizens and determined them to be "crimes against humanity under international law." The organization, which has frequently accused the Israeli army of human-rights abuses against Palestinians fighting "occupation," rejected all Palestinian excuses for these attacks against Israelis, including those targeting settlers, and said that these attacks "may also constitute war crimes."
[Amnesty] refuted claims by militant organizations like Hamas and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine that "under all international declarations and laws, Palestinians are entitled to defend and liberate their land by all means and to redeem their integrity." Amnesty explained that targeting civilians for whatever purpose is "contrary to fundamental principles of humanity which should apply in all circumstances at all times."

So maybe Amnesty International finally grew a conscience. Or maybe -- to take the cynical view -- they're just trying to bolster their battered credibility and protect their donation stream. Either way, it's a welcome and important gesture.

Now, if only NPR would get around to covering Amnesty's remarkable about-face, maybe this meme will finally gain some traction among the "root cause" wingnuts -- those who still cling to romantic notions that the humiliation of waiting at checkpoints trumps the inconvenience of extracting metal shards from a three-year-old's liver and intestines.


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