WE have become accustomed to hypocritical politicians but recent statements prompted by the deplorable events in Syria plumb the deepest depths of hypocrisy.

Referring to the decision by Russia and China to veto the Arab League plan, Foreign Secretary William Hague says that as a result of their action they “could be held responsible for deaths in Syria… that blood spilt would be on their hands... and that Assad would be encouraged by their actions”.

US Secretary of State Hilary Clinton describes the use of the veto as “a travesty”.

What both of them seem to have conveniently overlooked is that since September 2000, more than 6,000 Palestinians, including 1,400 children, have been killed by Israeli “defence” forces and that attempts at the United Nations to rein in Israeli atrocities have been defeated by the repeated use of the veto by the US.

When Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg recently had the temerity to criticise the continued expansion by Israel of illegal settlements on the West Bank, he was castigated by the Israeli Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon.

Did any member of the UK Government defend him? Of course not. How dare they?

With the support and protection of the US, Israel appears to have immunity from any criticism of its actions, from compliance with UN resolutions, international law and human rights.

If Syria’s president Bashar al-Assad is encouraged in his vicious actions by Russia and China, is not Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu similarly being encouraged by the cynical support of the US and those who hang to its coat-tails?

GORDON CLACK Witney Road Ducklington