United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan had reason to be upset that an Israeli airstrike took out a U.N. observer post in southern Lebanon on Tuesday, killing at least three peacekeepers. But for him to accuse Israel of an "apparently deliberate" targeting of the post was outrageous.
Annan's statement left the clear impression that Israel purposefully blew up the post to kill the observers even though he presented no evidence. In fact, it all happened so fast that there hadn't been time for even a cursory investigation.
Annan also failed to explain how such an attack could benefit Israel, militarily or politically. The bombing has been a political and public relations nightmare for Israel, fueling anti-Semitic sentiment worldwide.
Annan didn't withdraw or even soften the "deliberate targeting" charge after Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert personally expressed to him "deep regret" over the awful accident. That, at least, makes clear where Annan's head is at regarding Israel's right to defend itself against Hezbollah's unprovoked rocket attacks on Israel.
The secretary-general cuts no slack for Israeli mistakes, but would he have charged Hezbollah with deliberate targeting had it been one of the Islamofascist bombs that obliterated the U.N. post and killed the observers? We doubt it.
In the Alice-in-Wonderland world of the United Nations, radical Islamists always are the victims, and Israelis are always the bullies. It is why that agency is useless as an instrument of global balance and stability.