Crimes against Humanity:

Hamas’ Abuse of Gilad Schalit’s Human Rights,

Its Rocket and Mortar Attacks on Israeli Populations


Hamas’ and Iran’s Incitement to Genocide

During June 2008 through January 2009

A Brief Submitted to:

Professor Richard Goldstone

Fact Finding Mission c/o OHCHR

G Motta 48 Geneva SWITZERLAND


Professor Elihu D Richter MD MPH

Director of Genocide Prevention Program

Hebrew University-Hadassah School of Public Health and Community Medicine

Head of World Genocide Situation Room in GENOCIDE PREVENTION NOW (GPN) Worldwide Web Site Institute on the Holocaust and Genocide

Jerusalem ISRAEL

June 30 2009

….Between June 1 2008 and Jan 29 2009 the UN’s executive organs, the Security Council and the Human Rights Council remained silent in the face of…. [Hamas’ and Iran’s] incitement,[to genocide], ignoring their responsibilities under the UN Genocide Convention. This silence persisted despite the precedents from previous genocides, notably Rwanda, that such hate language is a warning sign, predictor, and catalyst of genocide….

…If the Commission fails to call for criminal prosecution of the known facts concerning the cruel and inhuman mis-treatment of Gilad Schalit, the Hamas rocket and terror attacks directed against civilians, and the incitement and hate language, by Hamas and Iran, it will recycle the culture of impunity for such violations of human rights to life, respect for llife and human dignity. By failing to pursue these actions, it will itself have become a complicit bystander to these crimes….

Excerpts from Brief

Genocide Prevention Program

And Institute on the Holocaust and Genocide



June 30 2009

Professor Richard Goldstone

Fact Finding Mission c/o OHCHR

G Motta 48 Geneva

Subject: Brief on Need for Criminal Indictments for Crimes against Humanity of Hamas for its abuse of Gilad Schalit’s human rights, its rocket and mortar attacks on Israeli populations and its and Iran’s incitement to Genocide

I am writing to submit an evidence-based brief to the Fact Finding Commission on the war in Gaza and human rights abuses during the war and the six month period preceding it, starting from June 2008 through the end of January 2009. I address in particular the roles of Hamas and Iran, its enabler and its instructor as perpetrators of crimes against humanity and the role of outside actors, notably certain UN agencies, as bystanders during the six month run-up to the war. I take exception to what appears to be a cynical choice of the time frame, which excludes the months and years prior to June 2008, during which Hamas sent thousands of rockets and mortars into Israel directed at civilian populations and increased its smuggling of weapons after Israel withdrew from Gaza.

Personal Background: I am a medical doctor with specialty certification in public health and Preventive Medicine, and served as the head of Unit of Occupational and Environmental Medicine at Hebrew University-Hadassah for some 15 years.

Over the past 30 years, I have participated in investigations by human rights groups of charges concerning the use of tear gas during the first Intimidate, the health conditions of Palestinian prisoner detainees, and supervising and participated in joint Israeli-Palestinian projects to investigate and prevent epidemics of lead poisoning, asthma in refugee camps, and to assess the distribution and determinants of lead exposures in children in Israel, Jordan and the Palestinian Authority. I am currently supervising a joint project funded by USAID to investigate intrauterine exposures to phthalates and pesticides in Israeli and Palestinian infants. In past years, I was the Chairman of the Committee on Ethics and Philosophy of the International Society for Environmental Epidemiology, and have published in the professional literature on environmental ethics and human rights, conflict and human rights, and unethical human experimentation.

I am now working in the field of prediction and prevention of genocide and genocidal terror, with a specific interest in state sanctioned and sponsored hate language and incitement, a crime against humanity which is a measurable and prosecutable predictor, promoter and catalyst of genocide. I am currently a member of the Advisory Board of Genocide Watch and Direction of the Genocide Situation Room of Genocide Prevention Now, of the International Center for the Study of the Holocaust and Genocide, In the course of this work I have been involved in activities to promote the indictment and prosecution of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and his colleagues for their incitement of destruction of the State of Israel and support, backing, and equipping of terror proxies to achieve this genocidal objective.

The Ethical Perspective on Gaza: The right to life, and respect for life and human dignity are the most basic of all human rights, and that the first responsibility of all governments is to protect this most basic of all human rights in the populations they govern and to respect these rights in other populations. Regimes or organizations which promote or advance the attack on these rights in their own and other populations forfeit their legitimacy.

The conflicts in the Mideast are not between “Israelis and Palestinians” or “Jews and Arabs”, but between those who stand for life and respect for life and human dignity against the cults of death, hate, and terror which are now convulsing so much of the Muslim world. The death toll in Gaza -estimated to be 1166– is dwarfed by the toll of 12 million humans have been killed since 1948 in internecine wars, genocides, genocidal terror, mass expulsions, and mass atrocities. When Hamas destroyed greenhouses to turn them into factories making rockets and missiles i.e. breaking ploughshares to make swords-this was the sentinel event signaling that this organization stood for death, not life. (See Attachment-Ben-Dror Yemini-Maariv)

An examination of the conflict in Gaza requires full investigation of the rocket and terror attacks and the incitement by Hamas and Iran which led to it, and, first and foremost, of course, the kidnapping and disgraceful conditions of incarceration of Gilad Schalit. The lessons of this examination are applicable to the prevention of further atrocities not only between Israel and the PA, but the entire world.

As a human being, Jew and Zionist, I cannot be happy about the loss of life and reported wanton destruction of life preceding and during the war in Gaza. But I am sickened by the indifference of bystanders which led Israel to fight a war of no choice after 8 years, during which 5107 mortar attacks and 4322 Kassam and rocket attacks fell on the Western Negev.
( even those compelled to carry out a war of no choice can carry out actions causing bad things.

The State of Israel attacked Gaza to remove the threat of genocidal terror-more than 8000 rocket, mortar and missile attacks over a period of 8 years-at first against Shderot-a city of 20,000, and then, directed against 1 million of its inhabitants. In doing so, Israel was exercising the first responsibility of every sovereign state: to protect the health and safety of its citizens, the most basic of human rights. Without life, there are no other human rights. I have no doubt that its actions caused loss of life and damage to property.

During the war, many of those killed were caught in the chaotic conditions of asymmetrical warfare, where Hamas used “shielding”, the use of civilian centers and hospital as places of concealment-which is considered a war crime, and seized shipments of food supplies intended for the civilian populations. ( According to the Israel Defence Forces, of the 1166 killed, 709 of them were “identified as Hamas terror operatives, among them several from various other terror organizations, and there were 162 names who “have not yet been attributed to any organization.” 295 uninvolved Palestinians were killed during the operation, 89 of them under the age of 16, and 49 of them were women.” 1/3 of the 13 IDF fatal casualties were victims of friendly fire. At this time, data are not available to me on the precise age-gender distribution of those defined as under age 16, but there were several horrible tragedies in which families with large numbers of children who were killed. In striking contrast to Hams, during the war, the IDF dropped leaflets and indeed sent telephone messages to warn Gaza civilians of the location and timing of impending attacks against combatants, a fact which refutes intent to kill or destroy a population or aims to harm civilians. Contrary to bizarre claims published in the Lancet and the British Medical Journal during the war, Israel ensured that adequate food and medical supplies reached Gaza. I have seen schools and nurseries in Ashdod, Ashkelon and Beersheba badly damaged by Hamas’ indiscriminate attacks.

Direct personal evidence. I have direct personal evidence which can be corroborated by external actors proving that the IDF at the command level was doing everything it could to protect civilians in a chaotic situation. Towards the end of the war, USAID Tel Aviv contacted me about a scientific colleague from Gaza and his family were at risk in a battle situation, and I put them in touch with the IDF Spokesman for Coordinating Aid to the Territories, who in turn passed orders to soldiers to ensure his safety and kept in close contact, to the degree that it was possible, over an entire weekend with rescuers from the IRC. The colleague and his family, with the help of the IRC, reached safety. Thereafter, according to the family, the soldiers destroyed the family’s car and shot out parts of the front wall of the family’s large house after they left. I do not know if this damage was wanton, or a result of some military indication to ensure that the house would not be used by terrorists as a hiding place. At the suggestion of the IDF Spokesperson, I told the family to file a complaint. USAID-MERC in the US Embassy and in Washington DC can verify the truth of the above statements. I will not disclose the name of the colleague to the Commission lest his identity place him at risk of retaliation.

Hamas’ Crimes against Humanity

1. The continued incarceration of Gilad Schalit

First and foremost, I call upon this Commission to investigate the circumstances

of Gilad Schalit’s incarceration, to verify his health status and conditions by visiting him,

and ensure visitation rights for him by IRC representatives. During the period June 2008 through Jan 2009, and thereafter, his isolation states the case for initiating legal actions against Hamas for its continued violation of the Geneva Commission, with regard to its disgraceful treatment of GIlad Schalit during the period of June 2008 to now.

I refer the Commission to the words of Elena Bonner, the widow of Andrei Sakharov, which I incorporate by reference in full as part of my submission.

“……AND ANOTHER question that has been a thorn for me for a long time. It’s a question for my human rights colleagues. Why doesn’t the fate of the Israeli soldier Gilad Schalit trouble you in the same way as does the fate of the Guantanamo prisoners?

You fought for and won the opportunity for the International Committee of the Red Cross, journalists and lawyers to visit Guantanamo. You know prison conditions, the prisoners’ everyday routine, their food. You have met with prisoners subjected to torture. The result of your efforts has been a ban on torture and a law to close this prison. President Obama signed it in the first days of his coming to the White House. And although he, just like president Bush before him, does not know what to do with the Guantanamo prisoners, there is hope that the new administration will think up something.

But during the two years Schalit has been held by terrorists, the world human rights community has done nothing for his release. Why? He is a wounded soldier, and fully falls under the protection of the Geneva Conventions. The conventions say clearly that hostage-taking is prohibited, that representatives of the Red Cross must be allowed to see prisoners of war, especially wounded prisoners, and there is much else written in the Geneva Conventions about Schalit’s rights. (italics mine) The fact that representatives of the Quartet conduct negotiations with the people who are holding Schalit in an unknown location, in unknown conditions, vividly demonstrates their scorn of international rights documents and their total legal nihilism. Do human rights activists also fail to recall the fundamental international rights documents?

And yet I still think (and some will find this naïve) that the first tiny, but real step toward peace must become the release of Schalit. Release, and not his exchange for 1,000 or 1,500 prisoners who are in Israeli prisons serving court sentences for real crimes.

Returning to my question of why human rights activists are silent, I can find no answer except that Schalit is an Israeli soldier, Schalit is a Jew. So again, it is conscious or unconscious anti-Semitism. Again, it is fascism.

THIRTY-FOUR YEARS have passed since the day when I came to this city to represent my husband, Andrei Sakharov, at the 1975 Nobel Prize ceremony. I was in love with Norway then. The reception I received filled me with joy. Today, I feel Alarm and Hope (the title Sakharov used for his 1977 essay written at the request of the Nobel Committee).

Alarm because of the anti-Semitism and anti-Israeli sentiment growing throughout Europe and even further afield. And yet, I hope that countries, their leaders and people everywhere will recall and adopt Sakharov’s ethical credo: “In the end, the moral choice turns out to be also the most pragmatic choice.”


One should add that terrorists in Israeli prisons are entitled to IRC visits, family visits, television and right to study in courses at Israeli institutions of higher learning, as compared with the inhuman conditions applying to Gilad Schalit. Violations of human rights and UNGC and Rome Statute. See the IRC statement, which speaks for itself.

2. Between June 2008 and Jan 2009, Hamas carried out Rocket attacks directed at civilian populations.

Between June 2008 and Jan 28 2009, Hamas continued to carry rocket attacks directed specifically at civilian targets with intent to kill, injure, intimidate and cause flight. All totaled there were 1750 rocket attacks and 1528 mortar attacks, totaling 3278 in all of 2008, or on average 9.0 attacks per day, mostly directed at Shderot, a town of some 20,000, but also at cities totaling a population of 1,000,000 or some 14% of Israel’s population. After a lull –during July, there was 1 attack, in August 8, in Sept 1, in October 1—, in November 125 rocket attacks and 68 mortar attacks, and in December there were 361 rocket and 24 mortarl attacks. All totaled, 10 were killed and 433 were wounded. During the “lull”, between 4 November and 19 December 2008, 223 rockets and 139 mortars were fired.

Additional information on the statistics of such attacks comes from:

b. These rocket attacks and were a continuation of previous trends. Prior to June 2008, such attacks, and collateral terror attacks directed at checkpoints processing the permits, increased during a period when Israel granted an increasing numbers of medical permits to Gazans seeking medical care in Israel, the West Bank and Jordan. The figure below presents the time line showing these parallel trends.

Source: No. 567 1 October 2008Israeli Approvals for Medical Entryin the Shadow of Terror Attacks at the Erez Crossing Elihu D. Richter MD, MPH

Such rocket attacks before and during the Israeli Operation represent what the Genocide Scholar Professor Gregory Stanton calls “genocidal terror”-in which acts of violence are directed against an entire population defined by its national, religious,racial or ethnic origin with the intention to kill destroy, expel and intimidate. Dan Izenberg, Jerusalem Post

I refer the Commission to the petition from Nick Kaufman to The International Criminal Court (ICC) calling for prosecution of Khaled Ma’ashal, the leader of Hamas,for crimes against humanity, for his inciting, directing, instructing and ordering rocket attacks against civilian populations with the direct intention of killing and harming these populations. The ICC has acknowledged receipt of this petition. (See attached file: Ma’ashal)

The fact that there were few injuries and deaths in Shderot and environs was most fundamentally a result of the fact that Israel built shelters to protect its population. By contrast, Hamas used members of the civilian population, as well as hospital and m mosques, to shield its fighters. ( ). There are similar reports of the use of shielding by Taliban terrorists in the Swat valley Pakistan.,2933,521557,00.html ). The past failure to condemn and prosecute such shielding as a crime against humanity in Gaza— opens the door to the spread of this practice to other theaters of warfare.

3. Between June 2008 and January 28 2009, the Hamas regime repeatedly propagated hate language to incite to genocide. The evidence for this statement includes videos showing the background of Hamas incitement and hatred. and bulletins from the period of the Gaza War, including video clips.

The Hamas Charter calls for the destruction of the State of Israel. ( charter, ref_) It offers stereotype images, perpetuated in a Culture of Hate.…/$File/G0214418.doc?… –

The language of demonization, dehumanization, and delegitimization appears in media, texts, mosques and political interviews, in violation of Statutes in the UN Convention on Prevention and Punishment of Genocide and the International Criminal Court. The content of this hate language is the evidence making the case for the evidence of the nature of intent -to destroy a population, in whole or in part—driving Hamas’s rocket, mortar and terror attacks on Israeli populations.

4, Between June 2008 and January 28 2009, Iran continued to supply, support, instruct, direct, enable, protect, and promote Hamas‘genocidal platform and the terror it deploys to advance this platform.

The evidence for this statement comes from the US State Department Report on Terror, References on Iranian support for Hamas terror activities. State Sponsors of Terrorism, This document singles out Iran and details its support for Hamas and Hezbollah. I enclose further documents summarizing this information in the following sources.


5. Between June 2008 and January 2009, Iran continued to Incite to Genocide to mobilize support for Hamas.

During the period June 2008 to Jan 28, President (now re-“elected”) Mahmoud Ahmadninejad of the Islamic Republic of Iran referred to Israel using the following terms: “terrorist and criminal state”,and called for “annihilate[ing] this false regime” to delegitimize, (June 14), and used the language of Mein Kampf to engage in dehumanization, (“stinking corpse”” June 13), “ germ of corruption”, (Sept 23), demonization, (“Zionists few in number but dominating financial and monetary positions”, “caught in the clutches of Jewish power, “inquisitive and invasive people” “Zionism is root cause of insecurity and wars” and finally “”Iran will support Hamas until the destruction of Israel[a]. ( Nov 26 2008) This repeated incitement to genocide with its use of crude anti-Semitic motifs of dehumanization, delegitimization and demonization represents a continuation of trends going back to 1979, which sharply escalated in 2005, when Ahmadinejad was elected.

The time line of Iranian incitement to genocide, using such language specifically for the period June 1 2008 to January 28 2009 is presented below.

Jun. 13, 2008

Press conference


“global arrogance established Zionist regime”

“[which is] a stinking corpse”[b]

Jun. 14, 2008


“terrorist and criminal state..backed by foreign powers…regime to be swept away by Palestinians”[100]

Jul. 2, 2008

21st TV public address,


“Israel’s days are numbered…peoples of region not is narrowest opportunity to annihilate this false regime[d]

Sep. 23, 2008

Ahmadinejad’s 3rd visit to UN[e]

“Thanks to God, your wish will soon be realized, and this germ of corruption will be wiped off the face of the world”[f]

Sep. 23, 2008

“The Zionists are the eternal enemy of ‘the dignity, integrity and rights of the American and European people” “Although they are few in number, the Zionists have been dominating an important portion of the financial and monetary centers as well as the political decision-making centers of some European countries and the United States in a deceitful, complex and furtive manner.”

“Even some presidential or premier nominees in some big countries have to visit these people, take part in their gatherings, swear allegiance and commitment to their interests in order to attain financial or media support.” even “the great people of America and various nations of Europe” are caught in the clutches of Jewish power: They “need to obey the demands and wishes of a small number of acquisitive and invasive people. These nations are spending their dignity and resources on the crimes and occupations and the threats of the Zionist network against their will.” “Today,”….the Zionist regime is on a definite slope to collapse. There is no way for it to get out of the cesspool created by itself and its supporters.”

Sep. 25, 2008

Interview with NY Times

“Zionism…is the root cause of insecurity and wars…. What commitment forces the U.S. government to victimize itself in support of a regime that is basically a criminal one?”[g]

Nov. 26, 2008


“Iran will support Hamas until the destruction of Israel[h]

Jan. 12 2009

Hassan Rowhani

Israel is “cancerous tumor”

This timeline is extracted from the paper on Iran’s genocidal Incitement by Richter and Barnea (Tehran’s Genocidal Incitement Against Israel. `

Thereafter, in March 2009, Ayatolloh Khamenei repeated that “Israel is a cancer” and the Holocaust is a lie”. |,504365,00.html

[a] Ha’aretz Newspaper (Israel’s daily) “Ahmadinejad; Iran will support Hamas until Collapse of Israel” 26/11/08

[b] Teitlebaum, J., Op cit, p.9, ref 15. see also

[100] Teitlebaum,J., Op cit p.10, ref 19

[d] Teitlebaum,J., Op cit

[e] Philip, C., Ahmadinejad Blames George Bush and Zionists for Financial Woe, 24th September 2008

[f] Sternberg, E., Iranian State Sanctioned Incitement to Genocide: Report on a Symposium, October 20th 2008

[g] New York Times, 26th November 2008, An Interview with President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad,

[h] Ha’aretz Newspaper (Israel’s daily) “Ahmadinelad; Iran will support Hamas until Collapse of Israel” 26/11/08

Bystander Indifference between June 1 2008 and Jan 28 2009: Could the War in Gaza have been prevented had International Bystanders not been complicit, passive, and supportive to Hamas’ Terror Activities and Incitement and Iranian support for this Terror and Incitement?

Between June 1 2008 and Jan 29 2009 the UN’s executive organs, the Security Council and the Human Rights Council remained silent in the face of such state sanctioned incitement, ignoring their responsibilities under the UN Genocide Convention. This silence persisted despite the precedents from previous genocides, notably Rwanda, that such hate language is a warning sign, predictor, and catalyst of genocide.


The Commission has a responsibility to investigate all charges against all actors and bystanders, including UN agencies and officials tasked with investigating early warning signs of genocide. In July 2007, the US House of Representatives passed HCON21, ( ) which called upon the Security Council to initiate proceedings against President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad for his incitement to genocide and support of terror.

If the Commission fails to call for criminal prosecution of the known facts concerning the cruel and inhuman mis-treatment of Gilad Schalit, the Hamas rocket and terror attacks directed against civilians, and the incitement and hate language, by Hamas and Iran, it will recycle the culture of impunity for such violations of human rights to life, respect for llife and human dignity. By failing to pursue these actions, it will itself have become a complicit bystander to these crimes.

I call upon the Commission to endorse the Responsibility to Prevent Petition (the R2P

petition) prepared by the Honorable Irwin Cotler, Member of the Canadian Parliament, and formerly Attorney General of the Government of Canada. This petition (see the R2P attachment) calls upon the international community to use the legal tools for prosecuting and punishing incitement to genocide, and to call for indicting and prosecuting President Ahmadinejad and his colleagues for incitement to genocide and support, aid, equipping and training Hamas, and his brutal suppression of human rights in his own Iran, in violation of UN Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of Genocide. (This petition was prepared months before the election in Iran and the brutal suppression of peaceful protests by the regime after the election).

The petition draws upon the legal precedents of the indictments and convictions for incitement to genocide from the Nuremberg Trials for Perpetrators of the Holocaust and the International Criminal Trials -Rwanda (ICT-R). The petition has been endorsed by a world-wide coalition of international jurists, human rights activists and distinguished genocide scholars, including Elie Wiesel, Louise Arbour, Said Ibrahim, Gregory Stanton, Samuel Pisar and some 50 others. In parallel, I call upon the Commission to initiate proceedings based on the petition already submitted by Dr Nick Kaufman to bring Khaled Ma’ashal to justice for his responsibility in ordering rocket attacks against a civilian population with intention to kill and destroy. (see attachment Ma’ashal RTF)

Finally, I call upon the Commission to promote the recognition of genocidal terror as a crime against humanity. It is the opinion of this author that such terror, when directed against populations with intent to kill or destroy, is merely genocide carried out by an NGO -any of those groups or organizations which carry out mass atrocities against non-combatant populations in which the intention is to kill, destroy, intimidate or expel populations in whole or in part. (See Dan Izenberg, Jerusalem Post

Submitted by:

Professor Elihu D Richter MD MPH*

Head, Unit of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Injury Prevention Center

Genocide Prevention Program

Hebrew University-Hadassah School of Public Health and Community Medicine

Associate Director, Institute on the Holocaust and Genocide, Jerusalem

Head of World Genocide Situation Room in GENOCIDE PREVENTION NOW (GPN) Worldwide Web Site