'We said rocket attacks were war crimes'


Judge Richard Goldstone, who headed the UN fact-finding mission's recent investigation into the IDF's Operation Cast Lead in Gaza, rejected on Sunday criticism expressed by Sderot Mayor David Buskila, stressing that the Hamas rocket fire on Israel was condemned in the report. "We stated that the launch of rockets and mortars constituted war crimes and possibly crimes against humanity," Goldstone wrote in a letter to Buskila. The judge added that he would be happy to visit Sderot. Last week, Buskila wrote Goldstone an angry letter, in which he accused the members of the UN commission of intentionally ignoring the suffering of the residents of Sderot. Sderot "suffered more than anyone from Hamas terrorists, who fired thousands of rockets, causing deaths, destruction and damage," he wrote in the letter. "There is no atonement, no forgiveness for the blood of a young boy whose short experience of life hadn't taught him that hatred and wars exist," wrote Buskila. The Sderot mayor went on to slam Golstone and the members of the team for failng to condemn the constant rocket and mortar shell attacks on his town. "The world, you included, was silent. Silent in face of our children's bodies, silent in face of our children's scared eyes. Silent in face of every one of the 8,000 rickets that hit our town," Buskila wrote in his letter to Goldstone. "Your silence was terrifying and reminiscent of things past," Buskila wrote, in an apparent reference to the Nazi era.