October 29, 2009
NEWS YOU CAN USE
Open letter to Judge Goldstone!
Dear Judge Goldstone,
My name is Dr. David Zangen, I am a specialist in Pediatric Endocrinology and diabetes at Hadassah University Hospital in Jerusalem. Over 50% of my patient population is Palestinian from Jerusalem, the West Bank and Gaza. I speak Arabic and initiated the first training program for Palestinian physicians in the field of Pediatric Endocrinology. The trained physicians were fully respected and were included as first authors on our studies that are published in world leading professional journals.
But, at the same time I happened to be the chief medical officer of my brigade during the Defensive Shield Operation in Jenin 2002. I was responsible for the medical treatment of our soldiers, and for enabling the hospital in Jenin to provide full medical services to the civilian population. I was personally involved in numerous medical treatments that Palestinians (including soldiers) received from Israeli physicians.
During and after the operation the director of Jenin hospital was a source to what has been falsely called the "Massacre in Jenin where 5000 people were massacred" this same person Dr. Abu Rali has also claimed that one part of the Jenin hospital was destroyed by Israeli tank missiles "12 tank rockets were shot at the hospital …" etc
You should know, honored Judge that these statements have been proved and documented as straight lies, not only by Israeli sources, but also by the Human Rights Watch and the UN organizations counting only 52 dead people on the Palestinian side (23 on the Israeli side). These organizations and photographs of Jenin hospital following the operation showed no evidence for any destruction at the hospital buildings etc.
This Dr. Abu Rali, a director of a hospital, a physician, lies and incites in the service of the Shahids. It is hard to believe that a director of a hospital can give such an obviously false testimony. I can't understand it, and you can't understand it; but unfortunately this is what has happened. Even persons who would usually be considered reliable sources become advocates of lies. Tragically, moral misbehavior of doctors in the Palestinian Authority is not new. The Pediatrician, George Habash, sent his terrorists to kill children in Israeli schools and so did the Hamas leader. the pediatrician Dr. Rantisi…and so continues to do the Pediatrician encouraging the sending of rockets from Gaza on innocent Israeli schools Dr Mahmud Zaher.
Please judge Goldstone, you should really be careful when such liars serve as the basis for your report. I am sure that you mean well, but being an eye witness both to the events in Jenin and to the subsequent media and initial false UN reporting, I do understand what happened to you.
Look, Judge Goldstone, at your report on the Al Fakhura event on January 5-6th 2009 (paragraphs 651-688). You do report how Israel was accused for directly bombing the UNRWA school. It took 2 weeks to withdraw from this accusation but you, honored Judge, went back to get your testimony only from the same people who spread the blood libel of bombing the school. Moreover when analyzing the scene you claim that you could not verify the numbers of 24 dead and 40 wounded but these numbers are not considered exaggerated. Finally in the Factual findings, you already determine that 24 people were killed and 40 injured!
Did you by any chance try to validate any of these invented and inciting details? Did you look at the Al Jazeera or BBC reports from the same very date of the event? Did you try to validate your "factual findings" conclusions by getting at least Emergency Room charts on the people admitted to their trauma department on this very day? Did you go over the I.D.'s of the "dead" people and the place or cemetery where they were supposedly buried?
I think you and your staff did not.
In the scene of "40 dead and 40 wounded" filmed by Al Jazeera and other channels reporters and screened at the same day all over the world you could not see bodies or blood spots in the streets beside two or three casualties and one footage of a single wall damaged by a bomb. As a physician who was at terrible suicide events with smaller number of casualties I can testify how it looks like for hours following the event….The media documentation of the Al Fakhura event does not verify and definitely does not go along with the fantasy and lies of your witnesses.
As a judge I am sure that you did not mean to hurt Israel. I try to believe that you came to Gaza without prejudice…but a judge is expected to look at least for some evidence and verification (media, ER registration, burial places etc….) of the testimonies and not accept impossible "facts". You have let yourself to be misled by fabrications made by either terrorists or even doctors such as Dr. Abu Rali from Jenin.
I and my colleagues in Israel are proud of the medical service that is given equally to every human being regardless of his origin; we are also proud to belong to a nation that has the imprint of having higher moral standards than others.
The price that we pay for this status is very high. The Palestinians and other Muslims around the world, either common people or even respected doctors, use straight lies as part of the war against us. The Western world media criticizes us and tries to find where we were not behaving up to the extremely high moral standards that we made ourselves.
I call on you to try and not draw conclusions from such lies and misleading witnesses even if they come from so-called professionals. In the modern world propaganda and lies are definitely a part of the war and as a judge you should not serve as a tool for augmenting hatred and conflicts.
We look for peace , we love peace and we do try our very best to fight for our right to exist in the highest possible moral standards even at the cost of our lives.
David Zangen M.D.
5 Bilu Street
Fax: 972-2-5845028 att. Dr. Zangen
As noted: Consultant in pediatric Endocrinology and Diabetes
Director of the Juvenile Diabetes at Hadassah Hebrew University Medical Center
Hadassah Mt. Scopus, Jerusalem, Israel
Major (reserves) and Chief Medical Officer of the IDF brigade that fought in Jenin during the Defensive Shield operation 2002. (An eyewitness to both the battle events and the subsequent media coverage).