Last week, the United Nations Office of the Secretary General issued a summary of its long-awaited Board of Inquiry (BOI) report on the 2014 Gaza War.
The BOI’s mandate was generally even-handed, did not declare Israel guilty in advance, and was comprised of individuals who appeared to be free of bias.
The BOI’s formation and origins stand in marked contrast to the UN Human Rights Council inquiry currently underway.
The BOI summary, on the other hand, paints a picture of intense urban combat between Israel and Palestinian terror groups, use of UN facilities by Palestinians to launch attacks and to store weapons, and uncertainty as to whether buildings were hit by IDF or Hamas.
There are other troubling details regarding the BOI primarily relating to the lack of transparency and methodology of work.
The main report itself is secret, so it is generally unknown what material was used by the BOI in drawing its conclusions.
In addition to non-credible claims made by self-interested individuals, the BOI also apparently used information obtained from unnamed NGOs. No information is provided as to how NGOs were selected, what reports were reviewed, and to what extent they were credited. Based on the current NGO publications issued on the Gaza War, almost all are based solely on speculation and conjecture, contain innumerable factual and legal errors, hide Palestinian combatant activity, and misrepresent dozens, if not hundreds, of Palestinian fighters as civilians in order to manufacture false claims of Israeli violations.
Nevertheless, the BOI report, even if unintentionally, clearly refutes the NGO narrative about the Gaza War.