Saturday, July 28, 2007

Jerusalem Vantage Point
By: Caroline B. Glick Wednesday, July 25, 2007

An Idiot's Guide To Diplomacy

The simple fact that a state’s foreign ministry’s job is to use the tools of diplomacy to advance the state’s national interest has escaped the attention of Israel’s Foreign Ministry and Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni.

This month Israel extended an official invitation to Martin Scheinin, the UN Human Rights Council’s Special Rapporteur for Human Rights, to visit the country to examine Israel’s counter-terror efforts.

During his eight-day visit, Israel gave Scheinin the red carpet treatment. He met with Livni, officials from the Foreign Ministry, Justice Ministry, IDF, Shin Bet, the prime minister’s counter-terror bureau, members of Knesset, the former and current Supreme Court chief justices, lawyers, academics and victims of terror. He was taken to visit Hadarim and HaSharon prisons to conduct interviews with jailed terrorists. He was brought to the Ofer military court to observe trials of terrorists.

Scheinin also visited the Palestinian Authority and met with officials in PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas’s office. He visited Bethlehem, Nablus and Ramallah and toured the route of Israel’s security fence.

Livni no doubt invited Scheinin to visit because she believed that by showing him what it is actually doing, Israel could convince Scheinin that it is not a human rights violator. Scheinin would finally see that Israel does more than any other country to uphold the human rights of its enemies. Indeed, he would see that Israel knowingly endangers the lives of its own citizens to protect the rights of its enemies.

And so he came and left, and on July 10 issued his preliminary report. No doubt to Livni’s surprise and the surprise of her staff, Scheinin’s report found fault with every single counter-terror technique that Israel employs. The security fence that prevents terrorists from entering Israeli population centers is bad because it is built past the 1949 armistice lines and makes it hard for Palestinians to get from place to place. Checkpoints, also aimed at preventing terrorists from killing Israelis, are bad because they make it difficult to move around.

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