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Human Rights (Except for Jews) By: Joseph Klein
FrontPageMagazine.com | Tuesday, July 11, 2006


The much ballyhooed debut session of the United Nations Human Rights Council turned out to be another UN-sponsored orgy of Israel-bashing. By a vote of 29 in favor, 11 against, and five abstentions, the Human Rights Council approved a one-sided resolution demanding that Israel end its current military operations in Gaza, which the Council blamed for the deteriorating humanitarian conditions of the Palestinian people. The resolution also urged Israel to immediately release the arrested Palestinian ministers, and members of the Palestinian Legislative Council. The Council decided to dispatch an urgent fact-finding mission headed by its Special Rapporteur to study the human rights situation in the region, which is to focus on what Israel is supposedly doing wrong as the ‘occupying’ power. There was not a single mention of the Palestinian provocations that caused the current crisis in the first place – the constant rocket attacks against Israeli civilians and the sneak attack into Israel that resulted in the killing of two Israelis and the kidnapping of an Israeli soldier. Such stellar paragons of human rights as Saudi Arabia, Algeria, China, Cuba and Russia joined the majority gang-up on Israel. A parallel effort is being advanced by the Arab states before the Security Council, but so far the United States has managed to prevent a double bashing.

However, while the Arab states are leading the pro-Palestinian charge at the United Nations, we do find a small flicker of truth published in at least one Arab country’s newspaper – a recognition that the horrible situation in which the Palestinians find themselves stems from their own actions. But will anybody listen? Certainly not at the United Nations.

 

The following words are not those of an Israeli official, justifying Israel’s counterattack against the Hamas regime. Nor were they written by the so-called pro-Israeli lobby in Washington that anti-Semites love to blame for all the problems in the Middle East. Rather, they appeared in a June 27, 2006 article in the Kuwati daily Al-Siyassa, which was written by Saudi columnist Yusuf Nasir Al-Suweidan. (Source: The Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI)):

The tunnel dug by the terrorists from the Gaza Strip to the Kerem Shalom crossing took them outside the Palestinian border, and they used it to penetrate into Israel - an independent, sovereign, U.N. member state. There [in Israel] they perpetrated the crime of murdering two Israelis, kidnapping a third, and wounding others, with all the dangerous consequences that [such a] despicable attack has caused and will cause to the Palestinian side.

These are sobering words indeed, which warn the Palestinians to look inward for the strength to choose a different path. The Palestinian masses are being duped, Mr. Al-Suweidan argues persuasively. Instead of using the chance afforded them when Israel unilaterally withdrew from Gaza last year to build a solid life for the Palestinian people, their government has used the masses as pawns in its non-stop war to destroy Israel. Mr. Al-Suweidan goes on to write:

            The main mistake lies in the fact that the Palestinian organizations did not respond correctly to the Israeli withdrawal from Gaza and its consequences. Instead of beating their swords into plowshares, pens, and other things that are needed for the development of Palestinian society - in terms of the economy, society, culture, and so on - most of them read the developments incorrectly and immaturely. This was exploited by the terrorist networks, that are funded and run by the regimes of the ayatollahs in Tehran and the Ba'th [party] in Syria, and [people] have been taken in by delusions and empty slogans like "liberation from the river to the sea" [that are heard] among the poor, hungry, and desperate Palestinian masses. At present, what [these masses] need most is food, medicines, clothing, and other essentials – not explosive belts, car bombs, and the slogan, "Congratulations, oh Martyr, the black-eyed virgin awaits you."

Hamas’ refusal to recognize Israel, its continuous barrage of rocket attacks launched from Gaza into Israel proper, and the continued kidnapping of the Israeli soldier have only brought more suffering to the people they are supposedly fighting for. Israel has reacted forcefully, to be sure, but it has done so against unprovoked attacks, particularly from the land that Israel had unilaterally turned over to the Palestinians as a sign of good faith. Israel has demonstrated in the past that it is also prepared to react positively to overtures of genuine peace that take account of its legitimate security concerns. But there must be reciprocity from the Palestinian side, which is sorely lacking today.

 

Hamas can stop the destruction against its power stations and government buildings, the arrest of its officials and the sonic booms that it claims are so frightening to the Palestinian children immediately if it simply arranges the return of the kidnapped Israeli soldier, ceases the rocket attacks and continues along the path of peace that President Mahmoud Abbas had begun. But why should the Hamas terrorists entertain such a thought for even one minute when their pals at the United Nations manage to put the world body on record against Israel time and time again? Indeed, the only member state that the Human Rights Council spent any significant time condemning at its debut session was Israel. Not Sudan’s genocide against its own people. Not Iran’s torture and execution of its political dissidents. Not China’s brutal crackdown on religious freedom and political protest. Not Cuba’s long record of widespread repression of political opponents who suffer in prison from malnourishment, lack of medical attention and forced re-indoctrination programs. Not Saudi Arabia’s horrendous record on women’s rights. Only Israel was singled out for daring to protect itself from terrorists who respect no limit to the inhuman acts they are willing to commit.

 

John Bolton has been proven right about the new UN Human Rights Council. It is simply more of the same nonsense that had discredited the predecessor Commission on Human Rights, pushed by some of the world’s worst human rights abusers. Moreover, the Council’s interference in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is a colossal blunder that may have exceeded its authority under the United Nations Charter. That is because the Human Rights Council, as a subsidiary body of the General Assembly, is bound by the following Charter provision which it apparently chose to disregard:

While the Security Council is exercising in respect of any dispute or situation the functions assigned to it in the present Charter, the General Assembly shall not make any recommendation with regard to that dispute or situation unless the Security Council so requests. (Article 12)

Since the Security Council is dealing with the very same Palestinian issue, the General Assembly (including its subsidiary bodies) has no role to play “unless the Security Council so requests”. The Human Rights Council went ahead anyway, overstepping the jurisdiction of the Security Council and acting in a totally biased manner under the sway of those member states which have shown the most contempt for human rights.

 

By its actions, the Council has put the United Nations on the side of the Hamas terrorists and of an even more fanatic Islamic militant group claiming participation in the kidnapping of the Israeli soldier, which goes by the name of the Army of Islam. This group has its own emblem that displays a globe, a sword and a Koran. The way things are going at the United Nations, the UN flag may end up incorporating that horrid emblem.

 

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