Richard Goldstone, author of the notorious Goldstone report, did not become a South African judge in the post-Apartheid Mandela Era, as The New York Times and other media have erroneously reported. He accepted a judgeship during the worst days of Apartheid and helped legitimate one of the most racist regimes in the world by granting the imprimatur of the rule of law to some of the most undemocratic and discriminatory decrees.
Goldstone was--quite literally--a hanging judge. He imposed and affirmed death sentences for more than two dozen blacks under circumstances where whites would almost certainly have escaped the noose. And he affirmed sentences of physical torture--euphemistically called "flogging"-- for other blacks. He also enforced miscegenation and other racist laws with nary a word of criticism or dissent. He was an important part of the machinery of death, torture and racial subjugation that characterized Apartheid South
It is no surprise that Goldstone kept this part of his life secret from academic colleagues, friends and the general public. I recall him at the lunch and dinner tables in
Now that his dirty secret has been exposed to the world, he has invoked the defense raised by German judges at
It is interesting that Goldstone made a similar argument to friends as to why he accepted the chairmanship of the investigative commission offered to him by the United Nations Human Rights Council. He acknowledged that the Council was biased against
Goldstone is an ambitious opportunist who lacks the courage of his convictions-- if he ever had any. He has always put personal advancement over principle. He is a master of rationalization and self justification. This time he has run out of excuses. He's been exposed as a poseur who will sell his integrity for a careerist opportunity. Fortunately he now has little integrity left to sell.
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