Israel expects the commission of inquiry on Gaza, which the Human Rights Council of the United Nations set up, to reveal damning evidence against its actions in the wake of the serious crimes being committed in the Strip during the current offensive.
Today, Israel Today reported the massive destruction caused by the offensive, in addition to the large number of deaths on the Palestinian side. It predicted that these crimes will not go unnoticed and Israel will be punished for them. In turn, there is a prevailing fear in Israel that the Human Rights Council will publish an incriminatory report that could lead to indictments against Israeli officials to the International Criminal Court in The Hague on the accusation of committing war crimes.
The newspaper said that the political and military leadership in Israel has been preoccupied with how to face the commission of inquiry. A series of deliberations have been discussed, including the deliberations that took place in the Political-Security Cabinet.
The newspaper reiterated that Israel’s concern was focused at the end of the aggression, when crews from the international media enter Gaza and see the enormity of destruction caused by the Israeli aggression. This would increase international criticism about the size of military force used by the Israeli army, which will lead to a serious backlash in international public opinion, which would impact political leaders, especially those in Western Europe.
Israel Today quoted official Israeli politicians as saying that the UN commission of inquiry will be much more damning than the “Goldstone Commission” report issued by a similar committee in the aftermath of the aggression on Gaza at the end of 2008, especially since the “Goldstone Commission” was a “fact-finding committee”, whilst the current committee is a “commission of inquiry”.
The newspaper considered the differences to be “extremely worrisome” because the probe could refer its conclusions to the International Criminal Court and bring to trial the leadership in Israel on charges of committing war crimes, should the case reach such a conclusion.
The newspaper said that the Israeli government has formed a team to deal with the commission of inquiry, and the team will focus on facing legal and political campaigns as well as the international media immediately after the aggression on Gaza ends.
It seems that Israel will repeat its claims and arguments that the Palestinian resistance in the Gaza Strip worked from within populated areas and used civilians as human shields, and that this lead to a large number of civilian deaths.