November 2005

As Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon strode up to the podium at the UN General Assembly on September 15, 2005 to deliver a speech recognizing the Palestinians’ right to statehood, government officials back in Jerusalem were preparing to draw a firm line under unfinished business from the start of the Palestinian uprising, five years earlier. The Justice Ministry held a muted press conference three days after Sharon’s speech to publish the findings of its investigation into the deaths of 13 unarmed demonstrators — 12 Palestinian citizens of Israel and one Palestinian laborer from Gaza — at the hands of the northern police force in the first week of October 2000. In the warm afterglow of the prime minister’s New York appearance, hardly anyone noticed the publication of the Justice Ministry report on September 18.