What does the consensus on Guterres as a Secretary-General of the United Nations mean? ماذا يعني الإجماع على غوتيريس أميناً عاماً للأمم المتحدة؟

Written by Nasser Kandil,

The end of the mandate of the current Secretary-General of the United Nations comes in conjunction with a set of developments that make the occasion of choosing an alternative a political global event from the first grade. The foreign policy of each of the great countries America and Russia has witnessed fundamental changes as the world witnesses articulated conflicts. In both fields the Russian American consensus on a specific name towards having the consensus in the Security Council has meanings and perspectives that are beyond just simplifying the work process and facilitating filling a vacancy.

During the mandate of the current Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon, Washington has dismounted in the era of George W. Bash’s wars and the neo- conservatives from the horse of its Defense Minister Donald Rumsfeld who has launched the theory of the end of the need for the International organization, because Bush’s administration felt, and then the administration of the President Barack Obama of the need to activate the role of the United Nations either in covering and legitimizing its occupation of Iraq and Afghanistan, or by giving the cover of the war on Libya, which the staff of Obama’s administration recognizes  that it was a condition to promote the intervention there according to the US public opinion. But because of the lack of a similar cover for a military role in Syria due to the Russian and Chinese repetitive vetoes, Washington withdrew of the decision of the military intervention despite its conviction that there is no opportunity to present its project without it. With the US regression of having the ability of the uniqueness and surpassing the need for the United Nations, the world is witnessing now a growing rise of the Russian political and military role which puts the United Nations into an inclusive framework for the foreign policies, especially as a unified coverage for the war on terrorism to prevent the US discretion in using this pretext to impose special interests and considerations. Moscow puts its importance to make the United Nations a platform for the negotiation and an institution for making settlements and applying them in the conflict areas. It became evident that the containment of the Russian vital accelerated strong movement of reactors is impossible without a greater role of the United Nations that is accepted by Moscow.

The Portuguese Socialist Antonio Guterres who has chaired the government of his country for ten years represents a European figure close to Washington, he is quiet, educated and politically skilled, present, and initiator,  interested in the humanitarian affairs and spreading the culture of peace and negotiation, and an advocate of US Russian understanding that shades the movement of the United Nations to accelerate the resolution of the disputes by negotiation outside the standards, templates and theories that give the priority to the special goals of the parties, but for peace and the peaceful competition first, and then protecting the civilians in the conflicts.

Despite Moscow’s preference of the Bulgarian Irina Bokova the director of UNESCO whose her nomination has been fallen by US veto because she raised the flag of Palestine over the UNESCO, and because of her recognition of the Palestinian country, it accepted not to use veto against Guterres after Bulgaria has withdrawn the nomination of Bokova who probably will occupy the post of the Deputy Secretary-General within Russian understanding with Guterres, as it is probable that a Russian diplomat will occupy the post of the political aide instead of the US diplomat Jeffrey Feltman, and probably the Russian envoy in the United Nations will be Vitaly Churkin . Thus the Russian US consensus on a figure such as Guterres remindes us of a similar consensus on the arrival of the former Austrian Secretary-General Kurt Waldheim, through whom his era the International Organization has been characterized with vigor and vitality.

Any observer can wonder if the US Russian confrontation ranging as suggested by the media backgrounds, then is not the nomination of the new Secretary General suitable for the mutual messages at this level, since the time is good for resolving the name of the candidate till the end of the year, and it was possible going on in the confrontation till the last day, and the understanding on a marginal figure that represents a significant employee who has a rank of secretary-general and who can pay salaries and conducting the routine procedures of the international organization which will be at the sideline of the upcoming events of the confrontations between the two largest countries in the world where there is no ability for the United Nations to intervene in other conflicts without their approval?

Guterres goes ahead as a result of  Russian US consensus on his name ,as an authorization to him to apply his theory which based on the call for such a consensus in order to go on in the negotiation issues about the conflicts, and to take them to understandings that do not have the title of a Russian US understanding after it was clear to Washington its ability to pay the costs of applying these understandings with its allies, and it seemed that the support of Washington indirectly to an active qualified energetic secretary-general gives an image other than the silly image which Ban Ki Moon represented, this makes the opportunities of forming new equations less expensive. Washington which waged the rebellion against the United Nations considers this an opportunity to restrict the Russian rise through an active role of the United Nations that is accepted by Moscow, and considered it its goal. Washington withdraws and retrograded in order to support the claim of Moscow to do the same exactly as how Moscow did before.

The war in Syria and Yemen, the Palestinian Cause, the issues of the immigration and displacement are the centers of the tasks which are supposed to be the priorities of Guterres’s tasks. He is so committed to them, and has negotiating perceptions for their approaching that needs an understanding on a framework between Moscow and Washington, but he has the opportunity to do what is necessary freely to launch negotiations of several platforms for crises known and experienced by this new secretary-general who knows the red lines of the international balance which is drawn by the US-Russian relations, and which have granted him the opportunity of arriving to the first international position and to test the opportunities of peace which based on the negative balance which stems from Moscow’s rise and the retreat of Washington. The first test is the decision to visit Damascus.

Translated by Lina Shehadeh,

ماذا يعني الإجماع على غوتيريس أميناً عاماً للأمم المتحدة؟

ناصر قنديل
– تأتي نهاية ولاية الأمين العام الحالي للأمم المتحدة متزامنة مع جملة تطورات تجعل من مناسبة اختيار بديل عنه حدثاً عالمياً سياسياً من الطراز الأول، حيث شهدت السياسة الخارجية لكلّ من الدولتين العظميين أميركا وروسيا تغييرات جوهرية، كما يشهد العالم نزاعات مفصلية، وفي كلّ من المجالين يصير للتوافق الأميركي الروسي على اسم معيّن، وصولاً لنيله الإجماع في تسميته من مجلس الأمن معانٍ وأبعاد تتخطى مجرد تيسير العمل وتسهيل ملء شغور منصب.

– خلال ولاية الأمين العام الحالي بان كي مون ترجّلت واشنطن عن حصان وزير دفاعها في عهد حروب جورج بوش والمحافظين الجدد دونالد رامسفيلد الذي أطلق نظرية نهاية الحاجة للمنظمة الأممية، فقد شعرت إدارة بوش نفسها وبعدها إدارة الرئيس باراك أوباما بالحاجة لتفعيل دور الأمم المتحدة، سواء بتغطية وشرعنة احتلالها للعراق وأفغانستان، أو تالياً بمنح التغطية للحرب على ليبيا، التي يعترف أركان إدارة أوباما أنها كانت شرطاً لتسويق التدخل هناك لدى الرأي العام الأميركي، وأنه بسبب عدم الحصول على تغطية مماثلة لدور عسكري في سورية بسبب الفيتو الروسي والصيني المكرّر، تراجعت واشنطن دائماً عن قرار التدخل العسكري، رغم قناعتها بأنه لا فرص لتقدّم مشروعها بدونه، ومقابل التراجع الأميركي عن قدرة التفرّد وتخطي الحاجة للأمم المتحدة، يشهد العالم صعوداً متنامياً للدور الروسي السياسي والعسكري، والذي يضع الأمم المتحدة إطاراً جامعاً للسياسات الخارجية، وخصوصاً كمظلة موحدة للحرب على الإرهاب منعاً للاستنساب الأميركي في استخدام هذه الذريعة لفرض مصالح وحسابات خاصة. وتضع موسكو ثقلها لجعل الأمم المتحدة منبراً للتفاوض، ومؤسسة لصناعة التسويات وتطبيقها في مناطق النزاع، وصار واضحاً أنّ احتواء الحركة الروسية الحيوية والرشيقة والمتسارعة والقوية المفاعيل مستحيل بدون دور أشدّ حضوراً للأمم المتحدة ترتضيه موسكو.

– يمثل أنطونيو غوتيريس البرتغالي الاشتراكي الذي ترأس حكومة بلاده عشر سنوات، شخصية أوروبية قريبة من واشنطن، وهو شخص هادئ مثقف ومحنك سياسياً، وحاضر ومبادر، ومهتمّ بالشؤون الإنسانية ونشر ثقافة السلام والتفاوض، وداعية لتفاهم أميركي روسي يظلّل حركة الأمم المتحدة لتسريع فضّ النزاعات بالتفاوض، خارج معايير وقوالب ونظريات، تعطي الأولوية للأهداف الخاصة بالأطراف، بل للسلم والتنافس السلمي أولاً، وحماية المدنيين في النزاعات، ورغم تفضيل موسكو للبلغارية إيرينا بوكوفا مديرة اليونيسكو التي أسقط ترشيحها فيتو أميركي، بسبب رفعها علم فلسطين فوق اليونيسكو، واعترافها بالدولة الفلسطينية، قبلت موسكو عدم استخدام الفيتو ضدّ غوتيريس بعد سحب بلغاريا لترشيح بوكوفا، التي يرجح أنها ستحتلّ ضمن تفاهم روسي مع غوتيريس منصب نائب الأمين العام، كما يرجّح أن يتولى دبلوماسي روسي منصب المعاون السياسي بدلاً من الدبلوماسي الأميركي جيفري فيلتمان، يرجّح ان يكون المبعوث الروسي في الأمم المتحدة فيتالي تشوركين. وهكذا جاء التوافق الروسي الأميركي على شخص غوتيريس ليعيد إلى الذاكرة توافقاً مشابهاً على وصول الأمين العام الأسبق النمساوي كورت فالدهايم، الذي اتسمت المنظمة الدولية في عهده بالحيوية والنشاط.

– يستطيع المراقب أن يتساءل لو كانت المواجهة الروسية الأميركية محتدمة على ما توحي الأجواء الإعلامية وتذهب للمواجهة، أليست منصة تسمية الأمين العام الجديد مناسبة للرسائل المتبادلة على هذا الصعيد، والوقت يتسع لحسم الاسم المرشح حتى نهاية العام، وكان ممكناً تقاذف اللعبة حتى اليوم الأخير، والتفاهم ربما على شخصية هامشية تمثل موظفاً كبيراً برتبة أمين عام يتولى دفع الرواتب وتسيير البريد الروتيني للمنظمة الأممية، التي ستكون على هامش الأحداث المرتقبة بمواجهات بين أكبر دولتين في العالم، حيث لا قدرة للأمم المتحدة على التدخل في سائر النزاعات بدون توافقهما؟

– ينطلق غوتيريس من توافق روسي أميركي على اسمه، كتفويض له بتطبيق نظريته القائمة على الدعوة، لهذا التوافق، للسير بملفات التفاوض حول النزاعات وأخذها إلى تفاهمات لا تحمل عنوان تفاهم روسي أميركي بعدما تبيّن لواشنطن عجزها عن دفع فواتير تطبيق هذه التفاهمات مع حلفائها، وبدا أنّ دعم واشنطن من خلف الستار لأمين عام فاعل ونشيط ومؤهل، يعطي صورة غير الصورة البلهاء التي قدّمها بان كي مون، يجعل فرص الصياغات للمعادلات الجديدة أقلّ كلفة، وواشنطن التي خاضت التمرّد على الأمم المتحدة تعتبرها فرصة لتقييد الصعود الروسي بدور فاعل للأمم المتحدة، ترتضيه موسكو وتقول إنه هدفها، فتتراجع واشنطن لتنضوي تحت المظلة تدعيماً لمطالبة موسكو بفعل المثل، تماماً كما كانت تفعل موسكو.

– الحرب في سورية اليمن والقضية الفلسطينية، وقضايا اللجوء والنزوح، محاور المهام التي يفترض أن تشكل أولويات مهام غوتيريس. وهو ملمّ بها جيداً ويملك تصورات تفاوضية لمقاربتها، تحتاج تفاهماً على إطار بين موسكو وواشنطن يترك له فرصة القيام بما يلزم بمرونة كافية، لإطلاق صفارة مفاوضات متعددة المنصات لأزمات يعرفها ويعايشها الأمين العام الجديد ويعرف الخطوط الحمراء للتوازن الدولي الذي ترسمه العلاقات الأميركية الروسية، التي وفّرت له فرصة الوصول للمنصب الأممي الأول واختبار فرص السلام القائم على التوازن السلبي الناتج عن صعود موسكو وتراجع واشنطن، وأول الاختبارات سيكون قراره بزيارة دمشق.

Ban Ki-Moon will be remembered for his total failure to enforce International Law against israel

Ban Ki-Moon’s Legacy in Palestine

He’s done nothing for Israel’s victims, says Ramzy Baroud

Ban Ki-Moon’s second term as the Secretary General of the United Nations is ending this December. He was the most ideal man for the job as far as the United States and its allies are concerned.

Of course, there will always be other Ban Ki-Moons. In fact, the man himself was a modified version of his predecessor, Kofi Annan.

The unspoken, but unmistakable rule about UN Secretary Generals is that they must come across as affable enough so as not to be the cause of international controversies, but also flexible enough to accommodate the US disproportionate influence over the United Nations, particularly the Security Council.

At the end of their terms, the ‘success’ or ‘failure’ of these Secretaries has been largely determined by their willingness to play by the aforementioned rule: Boutros Boutros-Ghali had his fallout with the US, as Kurt Waldheim also did. But both Annan and Ban learned their lessons well and followed the script to the end of their terms.

It would be utterly unfair to pin the blame for the UN’s unmitigated failure to solve world conflicts or obtain any real global achievement on a single individual. But Ban was particularly ‘good’ at this job. It would be quite a challenge to produce another with his exact qualities.

His admonishment of Israel, for example, can come across as strong-worded and makes for a good media quote, yet his inaction to confront Israel’s illegal violations of numerous Resolutions passed by the very UN he headed, is unmatched.

Even his purportedly strong words of censure were often cleverly coded, which, ultimately, meant very little.

When Israel carried out its longest and most devastating war on Gaza in the summer of 2014, a large number of international law experts and civil society organizations signed a letter accusing the UN chief of failing to clearly condemn Israel’s unlawful action in the Occupied Territories, its targeting of civilian homes, and even the bombing of UN facilities, which killed and wounded hundreds.

The signatories included former UN Special Rapporteur, Richard Falk, who, along with the others, called on Ban to either stand for justice or resign. He did neither.

The signatories criticized him, specifically, about Israeli shelling of a school managed by the UN agency for Palestinian refugees (UNRWA), in which ten civilians were killed.

In his ‘condemnation’ of the Israeli attack earlier, Ban even failed to mention Israel by name as the attacker, and called on ‘both parties’ to provide protection for Palestinian civilians and UN staff.

“Your statements have been either misleading, because they endorse and further Israeli false versions of facts, or contrary to the provisions established by international law and to the interests of its defenders, or because your words justify Israel’s violations and crimes,” they wrote.

And they were right. This is Ban Ki-Moon’s signature policy – his ability to sidestep having to criticize Israel so cleverly (and, of course, the US and others) when that criticism could have, when needed most, at least given a pause to those who violate international law at will.

Considering this, many have perceived Ban’s farewell speech at the 71st session of the UN General Assembly on September 15 as a departure from his old reserved self. It was understood that it was the end of his term, and he was ready to show some backbone, however belatedly. Sadly, this was not the case.

“It pains me that this past decade has been lost to peace. Ten years lost to illegal settlement expansion. Ten years lost to intra-Palestinian divide, growing polarization and hopelessness,” he surmised, as if both parties – the occupied and the military occupier – were equally responsible for the bloodshed and that Palestinians are equally blamed for their own military Occupation by Israel.

“This is madness,” he exclaimed. “Replacing a two-state solution with a one-state construct would spell doom: denying Palestinians their freedom and rightful future, and pushing Israel further from its vision of a Jewish democracy towards greater global isolation.”

But again, no solid commitment either way. Who is ‘replacing a two-state solution?’ and why would a ‘one state reality’ – which incidentally happened to be the most humane and logical solution to the conflict – ‘spell doom’? And why is Ban so keen on the ethnic status of Israel’s ‘Jewish democracy’ vision, considering that it was Israel’s demographic obsession that pushed Palestinians to live under military Occupation or live under perpetual racial discrimination in Israel itself?

The fact is that there is more to Ban’s muddled language than a UN chief who is desperately trying to find the balance in his words, so that he may end his mission without registering any serious controversies, or raise the ire of Israel and the US.

(Incidentally, Israeli Ambassador to the UN, Danny Danon, still ranted against the UN chief for calling Israel’s illegal Jewish settlements ‘illegal’ in his address. Other Israeli commentators raged against him for being a ‘liar’. Strange that even repeating old, irrefutable facts is still a cause of anger in Israel.)

Yet again, this is not the matter of the choice for words. A WikiLeaks document from August 2014 is an excellent case in point.

According to the document released by WikiLeaks, Ban collaborated secretly with the US to undermine a report issued by the UN’s own Board of Inquiry’s report on Israeli bombing of UN schools in Gaza during the war of December 2008-January 2009.

‘Collaborated’ is actually a soft reference to that event, where Susan Rice – then the White House National Security Adviser – called on him repeatedly to bury the report, not to bring it to the Council for discussion and, eventually, to remove the strongly-phrased recommendations of ‘deeper’ and ‘impartial’ investigations into the bombing of the UN facilities.

When Ban explained to Rice that he was constrained by the fact that the Board of Inquiry is an independent body, she told him to provide a cover letter that practically disowns the recommendations as ones that “exceeded the scope of the terms of reference and (that) no further action is needed.”

Ban Ki-Moon obliged.

When the UN chief is gone, he will be missed – but certainly not by Palestinians in Gaza or refugees in Syria, or war victims in Afghanistan. But by the likes of Susan Rice, whose job was made very easy, when all she needed to do was merely instruct the chief of the largest international organization on earth to do exactly as she wished; and, for him, to gladly do so.

In his last visit to Palestine in June, Ban Ki-Moon told distraught Gazans that the “UN will always be with you.”

As tens of thousands there still stand on the rubble of their own homes, denied freedom to move or rebuild, Ban Ki-Moon’s statement is as forgettable as the man’s legacy at the United Nations.

Ramzy Baroud (www.ramzybaroud.net) is a media consultant, an internationally-syndicated columnist and the editor of PalestineChronicle.com. His latest book is My Father was A Freedom Fighter: Gaza’s Untold Story (Pluto Press).

Too much talking, not enough action-UN Tells israel to Stop Building Settlements. Building Surges.

UN Tells Israel to Stop Building Settlements. Building Surges.

The U.N.’s Middle East envoy told the Security Council that its warning against illegal settlement expansion fell on deaf ears.

Israeli settlement expansion has surged in the two months since the diplomatic Quartet called for a halt to the construction of illegal Jewish outposts on Palestinian land, the U.N. envoy said Monday.

In a much-awaited report, the Quartet—the United States, Russia, the European Union and the United Nations—urged Israel to stop building settlements and called on the Palestinians to cease the alleged incitement of violence.

But Nickolay Mladenov, the U.N. coordinator for the Middle East peace process, acknowledged that this appeal had fallen on deaf ears.

“Its recommendations continue to be ignored, including by a surge in Israeli settlement-related announcements and continuing demolitions,” Mladenov told the Security Council.

The Quartet report was to serve as the basis for reviving the Israeli-Palestinian peace process that has been comatose since a U.S. initiative collapsed in April 2014.

There has been growing alarm that the construction of Jewish settlements on land internationally recognized as part of a future Palestinian state is killing off prospects for a peace deal based on the two-state solution.

Since July 1, Israel has advanced plans for over 1,000 housing units in occupied east Jerusalem and 735 units in the West Bank, Mladenov said.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government is also seeking tenders for 323 units to expand east Jerusalem settlements and for 42 units in Kiryat Arba near Hebron, for which it is allocating US$13 million in new funding.

Israel has undertaken a land survey on the outskirts of Bethlehem for the establishment of a new settlement in a move that would contribute to the “dismemberment of the southern West Bank,” said Mladenov.

The U.N. envoy warned that demolitions of Palestinian homes are on the rise in the West Bank, with over 130 structures destroyed this year alone.

Mladenov singled out the Bedouin communities from east Jerusalem and the Susiya area in the southern West Bank, warning that “the demolition of this community would set a dangerous precedent for displacement.”

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Netanyahu, who is currently overseeing the most right-wing government in Israel’s history, has repeatedly rejected calls for a halt to settlement expansion, arguing that the illegal projects are not an obstacle to peace.

“All of these plans would essentially create new illegal settlements and I call on Israel to cease and reverse these decisions,” Mladenov added.

The U.N.’s warning comes at a time when tension are high in Israel and Palestinian amid a new wave of violence in the West Bank as attacks target soldiers at checkpoints in the occupied West Bank as well as illegal settlers who live on Palestinian lands.

Thus a settlement expansion will not only kill off chances in a two-state solution but also continue to alienate Palestinians and exacerbate their sense of hopelessness in the face of the decades-long occupation.

Earlier this year, U.N. chief Ban Ki-moon said the recent escalation of violence in the West Bank, was the result of growing Palestinian frustration “under the weight of a half century of occupation and the paralysis of the peace process.”

Also Israeli Military Intelligence Directorate head Major General Herzi Halevi said last November that despair and frustration among young Palestinians are driving much of the violence, with many feeling they have nothing to lose.

The Security Council declared Israeli settlements in occupied territory to be illegal in a resolution adopted in 1979. Mladenov said that determination was “equally true and even more urgent a concern today.”

 

The hypocrites who take the first place in media and politics: De Mistura- Ould Cheikh- the two Al Asiri’s – Hollande – Ki Moon – Clinton

Written by Nasser Kandil,

A gathering of the hypocrites leads the way of the major global and regional political events, but we can exclude from them many in this article because it does not accommodate them all, especially who is preoccupied with his troubles as the case of the Turkish President who has swore that he would pray in the Omayyad Mosque in Damascus or in Aleppo, but he did not do what is suitable for a leader or a commander to do when his plans fall and fail, or when he claims that the variables have changed his priorities and thus he explains and announces the change.

Or as the one who has said that he will come to Beirut through Damascus International Airport and he pretended to have forgotten his talk, instead he has accused others of linking the Lebanese situation of what is going on in Syria.

Or the who has raised the banners of Al Nusra Front as a moderation force and has called to give it security and military privileges as what he called it Nusra Land similar to what the Palestinian resistance has got in the seventies of the last century in Cairo’s Agreement and also has pretended to have forgotten and has betted that the people might forget.

Those who are present in the list of the hypocrites are not the absentness, but those who are present these days with their long tongues and glassed- eyes that do not know how to be shy, at their forefront the UN Envoy to Syria Steffan De Mistura who pretended to be weeping for the blockade that has started few days ago on the neighborhoods of Aleppo which are under the control of the militants.

He knows fully that an extended blockade for years around two neighboring towns does not reduce the danger of the blockade, because those who were besieged there are maybe thousands. De Mistura said before about Daraya that the issue is a humanitarian that is not measured by the number but by the human pain. De Mistura the UN Envoy of the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon to the crises know that his insistence on linking any political solution in Syria by mentioning the future of the Syrian President is an exaggerated hypocrisy, but he does not care or be ashamed if one asks him what if the Syrian President proposes to the Syrian opposition what is presented by the UN draft of the Yemeni solution which got your approval before presenting it to the National Forces there, but you know the legitimacy of the Syrian President according to the legal and the constitutional standards is present by the power of resorting to the ballot boxes contrary to the Yemeni President whose mandate has ended, you know as well that the popular legitimacy which is shown in the announced loyalties and in the cohesion of the main structure of the country around him especially the army, the diplomacy, and the administration that are not comparable with the case of Mansour Hadi who did not find neither in Sanaa nor in Aden anyone who carry a flag waiving with it or any soldier who raises his gun defending on him. You know as well that the Syrian opposition has got opportunities to have control over Syria that the Yemeni National Forces which dominated on Yemen before the Saudi invasion have not got any of them, despite the differences of the wild open borders of Syria, the external support, and the partnership of the formations of Al-Qaeda, in exchange of the siege which faces the Yemeni National Forces and the purity of their choice in confronting the terrorism. What the UN draft proposes in Yemen allows the Syrian President to say; in front of the opposition there is a temporal timetable for the solution that is based on giving the areas under their dominance to the legitimacy and on giving the weapons within forty five days, and then the search into the political issue begins, what will De Mistura say but only that he is a hypocrite?

Ould Cheikh Ahmed who works in the Yemeni file as a UN Envoy is a hypocrite as his colleague and his master De Mistura, he knows what his master teaches him, he does not wonder  what if the Yemeni National Forces say that they will accept what is being proposed to the Syrian opposition where there is a ruling regime that engages with its opponents with weapons, they share the national geography as in Yemen, but  with two differences, first is that the Syrian opposition which constitutes in its controlling areas a geography in the North and in the South through the geographic contiguity not through checking the choices and the intentions a gate for unhidden external Turkish and Saudi interventions.

Second, the dominant forces on the military aspect of the Syrian opposition are terrorist organizations that got the agreement on their classification as an expansion of Al-Qaeda organization. Despite the weakness of the popularity and the nationalism of this opposition which is contested of its independence and purity, the Yemeni National Forces accept what is being presented to it, by accepting the linking of any security solution with a political one, and linking any political solution with a partnership in the rule, where it has the right of dealing with linking the fate of presidency with any circulating political solution, Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed will answer that he is hypocrite as his master.

The two Al Asiris the Brigadier General and the Ambassador, the first one says that Saudi Arabia is not a part of the internal conflict in Yemen and he wants from the people to believe that the war of extermination which waged by Saudi Arabia in Yemen a year ago is a war that is not related to the protection of Yemeni team that the internal confrontations proved while he is taking over the responsibility of the rule that he is without any popular support, he does not have but the Saudi invasion to impose it on the Yemenis. And this war is the peak of the intervention in the Yemeni issue, moreover the team which is depended by Saudi Arabia does not dare to utter any word on the negotiating table without Saudi royal demand, so he is just a Saudi tool.

While the second Alisiri, the ambassador wanted the people to believe that Saudi Arabia does not interfere in the Lebanese Presidential affairs, but it has the same distance from all the Lebanese parties, but he himself said after the announcement of the nomination of the Deputy Suleiman Franjieh by the Prime Minister Saad Al-Hariri that this nomination has got the support of his masters in the Kingdom, before he retreated and talked about the Lebanese compatibility, while regarding the same distance from all the Lebanese parties; Was not his speech against Hezbollah at the last dinner a doubtless proof of the Saudi neutrality among the Lebanese parties?

Ban Ki Moon and Francois Hollande have heartrending regarding the safe corridors which Syria and Russia have announced after the military process in Aleppo, they refuse the principle of the corridors, and then they ask once again to set these corridors under the supervision of international observers. It is known that the issue is just about securing the supply lines for the militants which they lost them, not an issue that is related to the civilians whom the talk of Ban Ki Moon and Hollande few months ago was about securing safe areas for them on the Turkish borders, according to Erdogan’s plan for the establishment of a buffer zone. The matter did not require neither a talk about its lack of necessity and restricting the search in how to send the supplies to the trapped, nor about the UN supervision on the corridors. There is one interpretation that they are at the top of the hypocrites’ list.

Hillary Clinton the US presidential candidate talks about that she will change the plan in Syria if she assumes the presidency putting the termination of the rule of the Syrian President as a priority, she ignores that she did that when she was a US Secretary of State, she told the militants do not accept to lay down your weapons then she said that there is no danger of the terrorism in Syria, because the coming of Al-Qaeda organization is a temporal matter that will end soon.

As a US Secretary of State she secured the chemical weapons from Libya to the armed groups and to Al Nusra front in particular by the US embassy in Benghazi. Thus the racing of Al-Qaeda groups and its branches to this weapon was behind the killing of the US ambassador there as was stated by the US investigations, so what is left for Clinton to do what she could not do while in Ministry  and will be provided by the presidency other than the buttons of the nuclear war? So will she do that as a president or will she like to be at the forefront of the hypocrites’ list?

Translated by Lina Shehadeh,

منافقون يتصدّرون الإعلام والسياسة: دي ميستورا ـ ولد الشيخ ـ العسيريان هولاند ـ كي مون ـ كلينتون

ناصر قنديل

– يحتلّ جمع من المنافقين واجهة الأحداث السياسية العالمية والإقليمية الكبرى، يمكن أن نستثني منهم الكثير في هذه المقالة لعدم اتساعها لهم جميعاً، خصوصاً من ينشغل منهم بمصائبه كحال الرئيس التركي الذي أقسم أغلظ الإيمان بأنه سيصلي في المسجد الأموي في دمشق أو في حلب، ولم يفعل ما يليق بكلّ زعيم أو قائد أن يفعل عندما تسقط خططه وتفشل أو يدّعي أنّ المتغيّرات قد قلبت سلّم أولوياته بأن يشرح ذلك ويعلن التغيير، أو كمن قال إنه سيأتي بيروت عن طريق مطار دمشق وتناسى القول، وصار يرمي تهمة ربط الوضع اللبناني بما يجري في سورية على سواه، أو مَن رفع يافطات جبهة النصرة كقوة اعتدال ودعا إلى منحها امتيازات أمنية وعسكرية بما أسماه «نصرة لاند» أسوة بما حصلت عليه المقاومة الفلسطينية في سبعينيات القرن الماضي في اتفاق القاهرة، وتناسى وراهن أنّ الناس تنسى.

– مَن يحضرون في قائمة المنافقين هنا ليسوا الغائبين عن المسرح منهم، بل الحاضرون هذه الأيام بألسنة طويلة وعيون من زجاج لا تعرف الخجل، يتقدّمهم المبعوث الأممي إلى سورية ستيفان دي ميستورا، الذي يتباكى على حصار بدأ منذ أيام على أحياء حلب التي يسيطر عليها المسلحون، ويعلم علم اليقين أنّ حصاراً ممتداً منذ سنوات على بلدتين قريبتين منها، لا يقلل من خطر الحصار وشأنه أن يكون المحاصرون بالآلاف، فدي ميستورا قال من قبل عن داريا إنّ المسألة الإنسانية لا تقاس بالعدد بل بالألم الإنساني. ودي ميستورا رئيس مبعوثي الأمين العام للأمم المتحدة بان كي مون للأزمات، يعلم أنّ إصراره على ربط أيّ حلّ سياسي في سورية بإدماج فقرة فيه عن مستقبل الرئيس السوري هي نفاق مبالغ فيه، فلا يخجل ولا يرفّ له جفن إنْ سأله أحد ماذا لو عرض الرئيس السوري على المعارضة السورية ما تعرضه مسودّة الحلّ اليمني الأممية التي حظيت بموافقتك قبل عرضها على القوى الوطنية هناك، وأنت تعلم أنّ شرعية الرئيس السوري بالمعايير القانونية والدستورية قائمة بقوة الاحتكام لصناديق الاقتراع خلافاً للرئيس اليمني المنتهية ولايته، كما تعلم انّ الشرعية الشعبية المترجمة في الولاءات المعلنة وفي تماسك البنية الرئيسية للدولة حوله، خصوصاً الجيش والدبلوماسية والإدارة، لا يمكن المقارنة بينها وبين حالة منصور هادي الذي لم يجد لا في صنعاء ولا في عدن مَن يحمل علماً يلوّح له به ولا جندياً يرفع بندقيته دفاعاً عنه، وتعلم في المقابل أنّ المعارضة السورية نالت فرصاً للسيطرة على سورية لم تحظ بالبعض منها القوى الوطنية اليمنية التي سيطرت قبل الغزو السعودي على كلّ اليمن، رغم فوارق الحدود البرية المفتوحة لسورية والدعم الخارجي وشراكة تشكيلات «القاعدة» معها، مقابل الحصار الذي يواجه القوى الوطنية اليمنية ونقاء خيارها في مواجهة الإرهاب، وما تعرضه المسودة الأممية في اليمن، تسمح للرئيس السوري بالقول إنّ أمام المعارضة برنامج زمني للحلّ يقوم على تسليم مناطق سيطرتها للشرعية وتسليم الأسلحة خلال خمسة وأربعين يوماً، وبعدها يبدأ البحث في الملف السياسي، ماذا سيقول دي ميستورا سوى أنه منافق؟

ولد الشيخ أحمد العامل في ملف اليمن كمبعوث أممي منافق كزميله وأستاذه دي ميستورا، فهو يعلم ما يعلمه معلمه، ولا يتساءل ماذا لو قالت القوى الوطنية اليمنية إنها ترتضي ما يعرض على المعارضة السورية من حيث نظام حاكم يشتبك مع معارضيه بالسلاح، ويتقاسمان الجغرافيا الوطنية كما في اليمن، مع فارقَين هما أنّ المعارضة السورية تشكل في مناطق سيطرتها جغرافياً في الشمال والجنوب، عبر التواصل الجغرافي وليس عبر محاكمة الخيارات والنيات، واجهة لتدخلات خارجية تركية وسعودية غير مخفية، والثانية أنّ القوى المهيمنة على الشق العسكري من المعارضة السورية هي تنظيمات إرهابية مجمع على تصنيفها كامتداد لتنظيم «القاعدة»، ورغم ذلك الضعف في وطنية وشعبية هذه المعارضة المطعون باستقلالها ونقائها، ترتضي القوى الوطنية اليمنية التماثل معها، وتقبل ما يُعرض عليها، من قبول بربطها ايّ حلّ أمني بالحلّ السياسي، وربط أيّ حلّ سياسي بشراكة في الحكم، ويترك لها حق التداول في ربط مصير الرئاسة بأيّ حلّ سياسي متداول، سيجيب إسماعيل ولد الشيخ أحمد أنه منافق كأستاذه.

– العسيريان العميد والسفير، الأول يقول إنّ السعودية ليست طرفاً في الصراع الداخلي في اليمن ويريد من الناس أن تصدّق أنّ حرب الإبادة التي تخوضها السعودية في اليمن منذ سنة، هي حرب لا تتصل بحماية فريق يمني أثبتت المواجهات الداخلية، وهو يمسك بمقاليد الحكم، أنه بلا تأييد شعبي، ولا يملك سوى الغزو السعودي لفرضه على اليمنيّين، وأنّ هذه الحرب هي ذروة التدخل في الشأن اليمني، وأنّ الفريق الذي تعتمده السعودية لا يجرؤ على التنفّس بكلمة على طاولة التفاوض بلا أمر ملكي سعودي، وأنه مجرد أداة سعودية، والعسيري الثاني السفير يريد للناس أن تصدق أنّ السعودية لا تتدخل في الشأن الرئاسي اللبناني، بل أنها تقف على مسافة واحدة من الأطراف اللبنانيين، وهو نفسه كان قد قال بعد الإعلان عن ترشيح الرئيس سعد الحريري للنائب سليمان فرنجية، أن هذا الترشيح يحظى بدعم أسياده في المملكة قبل أن يتراجع ويتحدّث عن التوافق اللبناني، أما عن المسافة الواحدة من الأطراف فكلامه بحق حزب الله على مائدة العشاء الأخير دليل لا يقبل الشك على الحياد السعودي بين الأطراف اللبنانية؟

بان كي مون وفرنسوا هولاند قلبهما مفطور على الممرات الآمنة التي أعلنتها سورية وروسيا بعد العملية العسكرية في حلب، ويرفضان مبدأ الممرات أولاً ثم يطلبان ثانياً وضع الممرات تحت إشراف مراقبين دوليين، ومعلوم أنّ القضية ليست إلا تأمين خطوط إمداد للمسلحين الذين فقدوها وليست قضية المدنيين، الذين كان حديث بان كي مون وهولاند قبل شهور عن تأمين مناطق آمنة لهم على الحدود التركية عملاً بخطة أردوغان لإقامة منطقة عازلة، ولم يكن الأمر يستدعي لا الحديث عن عدم ضرورتها وحصر البحث في إدخال المؤن للمحاصرين ولا في مراقبة أممية على الممرات، وليس من تفسير إلا أنهما على رأس لائحة المنافقين.

هيلاري كلينتون المرشحة للرئاسة الأميركية تتحدّث عن أنها ستغيّر الخطة في سورية إذا تولت الرئاسة، وتضع إنهاء حكم الرئيس السوري كأولوية، وتتجاهل أنها فعلت ذلك كوزيرة للخارجية، فقالت للمسلحين لا تقبلوا بإلقاء السلاح، ثم قالت إن ليس هناك خطر للإرهاب في سورية، وإنّ مجيء تنظيم «القاعدة» شأن عارض سيزول قريباً، وقامت كوزيرة للخارجية بتأمين السلاح الكيميائي من ليبيا للجماعات المسلحة وخصوصاً لجبهة النصرة في سورية بواسطة السفارة الأميركية في بنغازي، وكان تسابق جماعات «القاعدة» وفروعها على هذا السلاح وراء مقتل السفير الأميركي هناك، كما تقول وثائق التحقيقات الأميركية، فماذا بقي لكلينتون مما لم تملك فعله في الوزارة وستوفره لها الرئاسة غير أزرار الحرب النووية، فهل هذا ما ستفعله كرئيسة أم أنها ترغب بتصدّر سجل المنافقين؟

Saudi Arabia Yet to Sway UN over Yemen Coalition Blacklisting

Riyadh has not provided enough proof that it should be permanently removed from the UN blacklist over killing Yemen children, UN diplomatic sources said on Monday.

UN officials plan to travel to Riyadh to obtain more details on various issues, such as rules of engagement, one of the sources said.

A UN annual report on children and armed conflict said the coalition was responsible for 60 percent of child deaths and injuries in Yemen last year, killing 510 and wounding 667. The Saudi-led coalition includes United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar, Egypt, Jordan, Morocco, Senegal and Sudan.Yemen children

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon temporarily removed the coalition from the blacklist – contained in an annex to the report – on June 6 pending a joint review after Saudi Arabia, a key UN donor, threatened to cut funding to the world body.

Ban is to brief the UN Security Council on the report on Tuesday. He plans to tell the 15-member council that the United Nations will continue to work with Saudi Arabia on the issue and reinforce that only the blacklist is under review, not the substance of the report, a UN diplomatic source said told Reuters news agency.

In a rare move, Ban – who steps down at the end of the year after a decade in the top UN job – publicly slammed Saudi Arabia for exerting unacceptable pressure on the world body over the children and armed conflict report. Diplomatic sources told Reuters in June that Riyadh suggested a fatwa – an Islamic legal opinion – could be placed on the world body.

“He came out of this bruised and unhappy,” said a second UN diplomatic source, speaking on condition of anonymity.

Ban has since met with Saudi Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir. Two weeks ago Saudi Arabia sent a letter that diplomatic sources said did not address UN concerns about the risks to children in Yemen and was described by one source as “superficial.”

A second letter received by the United Nations last Thursday “does not address yet all of our concerns, but is good enough to continue with the joint evaluation,” said one of the diplomatic sources, speaking on condition of anonymity.

“They are willing to continue to be engaged, they formally accept international humanitarian law, and give all sorts of info useful to avoid and prevent future incidents affecting children,” said the source.

Yemen has been since March 26, 2015 under brutal aggression by Saudi-led coalition.
Thousands have been martyred and injured in the attack, with the vast majority of them are civilians.

Riyadh launched the attack on Yemen in a bid to restore power to fugitive ex-president Abd Rabbu Mansour Hadi who is a close ally to Saudi Arabia.

Source: Agencies

02-08-2016 – 10:27 Last updated 02-08-2016 – 10:32

 

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Imam Khamenei Urges Muslims to Raise Voice in Support of Palestine in Quds Day

Leader of the Islamic Revolution in Iran Imam Sayyed Ali Khamenei called for wide participation in Al-Quds Day rallies all over the world, as he slammed the United Nations for turning a blind eye to Saudi Arabia’s violations in Yemen.

In a meeting with the Judiciary officials on Wednesday evening, Imam Khameneni called for a high turnout in the Quds Day, which falls on Friday.

The Leader said that the Iranian nation and Muslims all around the world will once again raise their voice in support of the Palestinian people on Friday.

The International Quds Day is an annual event during which demonstrators across the world express their solidarity with the oppressed Palestinian people and opposition to the occupation of the Palestinian territories by the Zionist entity.

The day, which falls on the last Friday of the holy month of Ramadan, was named by the late Founder of the Islamic Revolution, Imam Khomeini.

UN’s ‘Blind Eye’

Meanwhile, Imam Khamenei slammed UN over Saudis’ child killing in Yemen.

“The UN’s turning a blind eye to the ongoing crimes and child killing in Yemen in exchange for money from some countries” is a disgrace to humanity, with which the Islamic Republic “must deal legally and judicially across the globe.”

Earlier this month, the United Nations briefly blacklisted Saudi Arabia for children’s rights violations in Yemen based on the results of a report which stated the monarchy was responsible for 60 percent of the 785 underage deaths in Yemen last year. But on June 6, United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon removed the kingdom from the list.

Following the U-turn by the UN, Ban admitted that the Saudis were temporarily removed from the list after they administered “undue pressure” on the world body by threatening to cut off funding to humanitarian programs.

The Leader also stressed that the West’s definition of human rights is established on “false foundations”, therefore “Islamic human rights based on firm and rational foundations have to be defined and pursued” at global legal bodies.

Pursuing Violated Iran’s Rights

On the other hand, Imam Khamenei said the judiciary system in the Islamic Republic should pursue the case of Iran’s violated rights during the sanctions.
“Violation of the Iranian people’s rights as a result of sanctions must be pursued judicially on a global scale,” the Leader said.

After Iran and the five permanent members of the UN Security Council – the United States, France, Britain, China and Russia – plus Germany started implementing the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action on January 16, all nuclear-related sanctions imposed on Iran by the European Union, the Security Council and the US were lifted. Iran, in return, has put some limitations on its nuclear activities.

In April, the US Supreme Court ruled that around $2 billion of Iran’s frozen assets blocked under US sanctions be turned over to the American families of the victims of a 1983 bombing in the Lebanese capital Beirut and other attacks allegedly blamed on Iran. The Islamic Republic has denied any role in the attacks.

Source: Agencies

30-06-2016 – 11:11 Last updated 30-06-2016 – 11:11

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U.N. Bows To Saudi Financial Threats, Removes KSA From Child Killers List

Despite the crowing of Western nations like the United States, Britain, France and other NATO countries, as well as the United Nations, regarding “human rights violations” in countries like Syria (where the main rights violators have been Western-backed terrorists funded by the West itself) and Iran, Saudi Arabia has continued apace with its policy of floggings, imprisonment, torture, and beheadings for offenses such as “insulting Islam,” “establishing liberal websites” and “sorcery” to the tune of little to no criticism by the West.

While Syria was, without a doubt, the most secular and safest place in the Middle East for minorities (ethnic and religious) and women before the 2011 Western-backed destabilization, Saudi Arabia maintained its policy of slavery and gross oppression of women. The righteous and sanctimonious West, however, said not a word about the savage feudal monarchy of the House of Saud.

After numerous reports began surfacing regarding Saudi cruelty and the oppressive Saudi state, and after a massive torrent of coverage coming from the alternative press, the crimes of the Saudi monarchy could no longer be completely ignored; a fact which has highlighted not only the horrors of Saudi leadership but the hypocrisy of the West.

Thus, after a significant exposé of Saudi war crimes and human rights violations at home and abroad, even the United Nations could no longer remain silent.

As a result, the U.N.’s “Children And Armed Conflict” report for 2015 listed Saudi Arabia and its anti-Houthi coalition in Yemen as “parties that kill or maim children” and “parties that engage in attacks on schools and/or hospitals.” The report’s findings were based on the work of U.N. researchers stationed in Yemen who attributed 60 percent of killed and injured children in that country to the bombs dropped by the Saudi coalition. Yet Saudi Arabia’s name was eventually struck off the list provided in the report less than a week after it was released, a decision that was made by U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon.

The reason for Ki-moon’s “revision” of the report was simple – he was threatened with the loss of funds being provided for U.N. relief efforts in Syria, Sudan, and Palestine if he did not remove Saudi Arabia from the list of child killers. Although Ki-moon did not mention who it was that threatened him, it was apparent that the threats came from the Saudis who did all but admit that they were, indeed, the country suggesting they would withhold funds.

“We didn’t use threats but such listing will obviously have an impact on our relations with the U.N.,” said Saudi Ambassador to the U.N. Abdallah al-Mouallimi. Saudi Arabia is the largest donor to the United Nations in the Middle East and has provided the organization with millions for programsaimed at Syria, Iraq, and Palestine.

“The report describes horrors no child should have to face,” Ki-moon said. “At the same time, I also had to consider the very real prospect that millions of other children would suffer grievously if, as was suggested to me, countries would defund many U.N. programs. Children already at risk in Palestine, South Sudan, Syria, Yemen, and so many other places would fall further into despair.”

In other words, Ki-moon has abandoned children in Yemen for money. Plain and simple. There is no way around it. He can claim that he made a risks/benefits analysis and a decision for the greater good but, at the end of the day, he sold children down the river for cash.

None of this is surprising, of course. But it does highlight a number of problems that need to be addressed.

First, it is apparent that the mainstream and official willful ignorance and failure to address Saudi war crimes and crimes against humanity are going to continue.

Second, it is apparent that the United Nations is exactly what so many informed observers and U.N. critics have always known it to be – a corrupt embodiment of the worker bees for a world oligarchy in need of an official world governance structure.

Third, this situation illustrates the immense dangers surrounding the growth of the power of the United Nations in world affairs as well as any other “global governance” institution that supersedes national sovereignty. Indeed, the U.N. reaction to Saudi Arabia’s threats are a perfect example of why organizations like the United Nations are incredibly dangerous to the individual liberties and living standards of every human being on earth. With as much power as the United Nations and its international sister organizations like the WTO, World Bank, IMF and others already have over the decisions of individual nations, one need not look very far to see the dangers that a United Nations acting as an official world government structure – a destination at which the U.N. is rapidly arriving – would potentially pose to the world’s people.

After all, the United Nations has been known for some time to merely be a global version of what is already in existence at the national level – a gaggle of corrupt bureaucrats and oligarchs intent on maintaining their own power. This is why the United States can march across the earth, visiting death and destruction on innocent people with no condemnation, and a simple financial threat can eliminate any condemnation of murdering children abroad.

While many well-meaning observers may have an idealistic view of the United Nations as an organization that stands above the fray, with the best interest of the world’s most disadvantaged people, women, oppressed minorities, and children at heart, the recent decision by Ban Ki-moon should serve as proof that the United Nations is every bit as dirty and favorable to world financial power as any national government. These proponents of increased U.N. authority should think long and hard before they wish away their sovereignty to an international body that so blatantly makes decisions on human rights with a calculator.

Any further authority granted to the U.N. will thus be nothing more than a worldwide version of the U.S. government with a healthy dash of the Soviet Union thrown into the mix.

Image Credit: TheFreeThoughtProject.com

Brandon Turbeville – article archive here – is the author of seven books, Codex Alimentarius — The End of Health Freedom7 Real ConspiraciesFive Sense Solutions and Dispatches From a Dissident, volume 1 andvolume 2The Road to Damascus: The Anglo-American Assault on Syria, and The Difference it Makes: 36 Reasons Why Hillary Clinton Should Never Be President. Turbeville has published over 650 articles on a wide variety of subjects including health, economics, government corruption, and civil liberties. Brandon Turbeville’s radio show Truth on The Tracks can be found every Monday night 9 pm EST at UCYTV. His website is BrandonTurbeville.com He is available for radio and TV interviews. Please contact activistpost (at) gmail.com.

This article may be freely shared in part or in full with author attribution and source link.

The UN Hears No Evil and Sees No Evil, UK- France Mum on Blackmailing UN

The UN Hears No Evil and Sees No Evil in Yemen

Darko Lazar

A little girl clinches a bottle of cooking oil as if it were her favorite toy. Hers and other families in a suburb of Sana’a scramble to grab hold of their allocation of food supplies distributed by the Yemen Organization for Humanitarian Relief and Development [MONA], one of the last remaining NGOs operating in war-torn Yemen.

Courtesy of MONA


Young boys hold onto sacks of rice and wheat and drag them across the yard to their houses, so they can be used in the preparation of the nightly Iftar meal. With the onset of the Holy Month of Ramadan, these children represent the very few of the fortunate ones.

Amid the relentless bombing campaign by the Saudi-led coalition which has dragged on for over a year now – claiming close to 10,000 lives – countless other families will spend their nights without the means to afford themselves this simplest of rituals.

To make matters worse, the already lackluster international condemnation of this slow-motion genocide hit a new low earlier this week when the United Nations reneged on its earlier decision and removed the Saudis and their allies from a children’s rights blacklist.

MONA’s co-founder Dr. Riaz Karim tells me that he is not surprised by the UN move.

“By removing the Saudi-led coalition from the blacklist for child deaths in Yemen, the United Nations has once again sold out its principles to the Saudi bloodlust,” Dr. Karim stresses.

 

Courtesy of MONA

 

The decision to reprimand Saudi Arabia was taken after the UN report on children and armed conflict, which deemed that the country and its cohorts in the conflict were responsible for some 60 percent of all child deaths and injuries in Yemen.
According to UN figures, more than 510 children were killed by the Saudi-led campaign, and nearly 700 have been wounded. The report also accused the coalition of being behind half the attacks on schools and hospitals.

But Dr. Karim, whose organization operates in some of Yemen’s worst hit areas, disputes those findings.

“The number of child deaths reported by the UN does not reflect the reality on the ground. Those children who die everyday due to a lack of food and medication are also part of the grand scheme of things. They are dying because of the blockade, which is also used as a weapon of war,” he says.

Despite its ‘modest’ assessment, the UN, which at best has a sketchy record in condemning rights violations in conflicts worldwide, was quickly forced to back paddle.

Speaking with Reuters on condition of anonymity, UN sources revealed how the international body was bombarded with calls from Arab foreign ministers, as well as ministers from the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, threatening to cut off funds for other UN programs, after the blacklisting was announced.

“Bullying, threats, pressure,” is how one diplomatic source branded the lobbying campaign, adding that it was “real blackmail”.

By June 9, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon explained that he was forced to forgive Saudi Arabia’s atrocities against Yemen’s children to secure funding for humanitarian missions elsewhere in the region.

Ban said that without the funds, “children already at risk in Palestine, South Sudan, Syria, Yemen and so many other places would fall further into despair.”

The UN, which has kept “Israel” off the blacklist following the 2014 carnage in Gaza, has long since had a credibility problem, and is known for succumbing to brazen pressure from member states.

“The UN blacklisting showed that the degree of the crimes committed by the Saudi-led coalition could not be ignored anymore. It did not show that the UN has all of a sudden turned into an impartial, equitable player. If it had it would not have put whatever the Houthis had done on the same level and on the same table as what the Saudi and UAE military had done in Yemen,” says the Zagreb-based independent geopolitical analyst, Navid Nasr.

The removal of the Saudi-led coalition from the black list quickly prompted angry reactions from human rights groups, which accused UN officials of “political manipulation.”

Twenty prominent human rights groups urged Ban Ki-moon to reinstate Saudi Arabia onto the list.

“If the Saudi-led coalition wants to be removed from the list, it should stop killing and maiming children and bombing schools and hospitals in Yemen, the violations for which it was listed,” the groups wrote in a letter earlier this week.

Ontario-based International Human Rights Lawyer, Edward Corrigan agrees that the UN’s credibility has taken a serious hit.

“I am sure that the Saudis were backed by the US and Great Britain and that is a lot of power. It just goes to show that the UN is a body that is clearly not objective and is easily influenced by the big power brokers and it can be manipulated by countries like Saudis Arabia to force them to retract what I think was a truthful report,” says Corigen.

But the decision to remove Riyadh from the blacklist is not just about saving the estimated 150 million dollars in contributions to UN agencies from the US, UK and Persian Gulf Arab monarchies.

It is rather about the billions of dollars in arms deals, which were seriously jeopardized by the UN announcement declaring Saudi Arabia as a violator of children’s rights.

According to the Leahy Law, the US Department of State and Department of Defense are prohibited from providing military assistance to foreign governments that are classified as human rights violators.

So, less than 48 hours after the UN was forced to remove Riyadh from its list of disrepute, the American multinational corporation Boeing announced that it would start delivering 24 US AH-6i Little Bird attack helicopters to the Saudis.

The helicopters can be armed with Hellfire missiles, rocket launchers, mini-guns, and machine guns.

The delivery makes up a small portion of the record 60 billion dollars in US military sales to Saudi Arabia since 2010.

Meanwhile, Great Britain has sold an estimated GBP 2.7 billion worth of weapons to the Saudis since Riyadh launched its attack on Yemen.

Rights group Amnesty International provided indisputable evidence earlier this year that the Saudi-led coalition had used the internationally banned British BL-755 cluster bombs against civilian areas.

Each BL-755 bomb contains a cluster of 147 smaller explosives, which scatter over a wide area when dropped. Some do not explode until agitated by unsuspecting civilians and are often confused for toys by children.

The United Nations is not just powerless to uphold basic human rights of Yemen’s civilian population, it is complicit in promoting much more sinister agendas.

Source: al-Ahed news

11-06-2016 | 08:43

 

 Saudi War on Yemen: UK, France Mum on Blackmailing UN

Local Editor

France and the UK have called for calm in an angry row between Saudi Arabia and the UN but have kept silent on each side’s misconduct in dropping Riyadh from a blacklist of children’s rights violators.

Yemeni children among rubble


Both Saudi Arabia and the UN have come under criticism after United Nations chief Ban Ki-moon admitted on Thursday that he removed the kingdom from the blacklist under “undue pressure.”

“We have to do everything to appease the situation,” French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault said Friday, refusing to take any sides in the dispute.

“France is always there when it comes to safeguarding the UN’s capacity to take action,” he added, without specifying what those actions were.

The United Nations blacklisted Saudi Arabia after concluding in a report released last week that it was responsible for 60 percent of the 785 deaths of children in Yemen last year.

But in an embarrassing climb-down, the world body announced on Monday that Saudi Arabia would be scratched from the list of shame pending a joint review with the kingdom.

The UN chief said Thursday he temporarily removed Saudi Arabia from the blacklist because Saudi Arabia’s supporters threatened to stop funding many UN programs.

“This was one of the most painful and difficult decisions I have had to make,” Ban said.

One senior UN official described Ban’s choice as between the “plague and cholera” but human rights groups accused the UN chief of caving to pressure from powerful countries and said he risked harming his UN legacy.

The United States backed Ban’s remarks and said the UN chief had invited the Saudis and its allies to discuss the report in New York on June 17.

British Ambassador Matthew Rycroft also tried to gloss over the situation, saying he welcomed “the fact that the secretary-general and Saudi Arabia have reached agreement on an analysis of the cases in the report.”

The 15-member council has not intervened in the controversy. It did not get involved last year when the occupying regime of Israel was left off the blacklist after being included in an earlier draft.

Ban took a veiled swipe at the council on Thursday.

“When UN reports come under fire for raising difficult issues or documenting violations of law or human rights, member states should defend the mechanisms and mandates that they themselves have established,” he said.

According to some diplomats, the UN chief was subjected to “bullying, threats, and pressure” and “real blackmail.”

Source: News Agencies, Edited by website team

11-06-2016 | 09:39
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UN’s Ban Slams Saudis for ’Undue Pressure’ over Child Rights Blacklist

Local Editor

BanUnited Nations chief Ban Ki-moon said on Thursday that Saudi Arabia exerted “unacceptable” undue pressure by threatening to cut off vital funding to the world body after a U.N. report blacklisted the Saudi-led military coalition for killing children in Yemen.

The U.N. announced on Monday it had removed the coalition from a child rights blacklist – released last week – pending a joint review by the organization and the coalition of cases of child deaths and injuries during the year-old war in Yemen.

Ban said his decision to temporarily remove the coalition from the list was “one of the most painful and difficult decisions I have had to make,” and that the threats to pull funding raised “the very real prospect that millions of other children would suffer grievously.”

“Children already at risk in Palestine, South Sudan, Syria, Yemen and so many other places would fall further into despair,” he told reporters.

“It is unacceptable for member states to exert undue pressure,” he added. “Scrutiny is a natural and necessary part of the work of the United Nations.”

Ban did not explicitly mention the Saudi-led coalition, though it was clearly the focus of his remarks.

Earlier this week, Reuters reported that allies of Saudi Arabia piled pressure on Ban over the coalition’s blacklisting, with Riyadh threatening to cut Palestinian aid and funds to other U.N. programs, diplomatic sources said.

The blacklist includes countries and armed groups accused of violating the rights of children during armed conflicts.

Saudi Arabia on Thursday denied threatening a cut-off of humanitarian funding to pressure the United Nations to remove the Saudi-led coalition fighting in Yemen from a blacklist of child rights violators.

“We did not use threats or intimidation and we did not talk about funding,” Saudi Ambassador Abdullah al-Mouallimi told reporters.

Source: Agencies

09-06-2016 – 19:37 Last updated 09-06-2016 – 19:39

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Invisible knives gives israel impunity for murder, the UN does nothing

The UN and the Invisible Palestinian Knives of Allege-gate

The UN is as fake as the fake knives of Allege-gate. Both are smokescreens for impunity for zionist brutality and crimes against humanity.

Vacy Vlazna              2016-02-17

I Palestine, you would be forgiven for thinking that there was no United Nations Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions.

The SR, Christof Heyns, in the past 6 years, has never made a country on-site visit to Palestine to get first hand information on the hundreds of cases of zionist perpetration of extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions of the people of Palestine.

Not even the dozens of extrajudicial street executions of Palestinian children and youth carrying the invisible knives in Allege-gate since October 1, 2015 has impelled Heyns to rush to Palestine to ensure the zionist war criminals uphold Palestinian right to life.

In Palestine ‘alleged’ is a synonym for ‘extrajudicial, summary, or arbitrary execution’.

Yes, there is a Palestinian youth intifada, and yes there have been acts of resistance to the illegal occupation involving knives, rocks, and cars that have taken some occupier-settler lives.

But the Zionist Occupation Forces (ZOF) i.e. military and police death squads are running amok in Occupied Palestine shooting, seemingly for grisly amusement, innocent  Palestinian schoolchildren, workers., housewives and youth.

In a wimpy statement on 16 November 2015,  SR Heyns welcomed the assurance of the zionist “Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein to the effect that Israeli security forces are prohibited from firing at a suspected assailant unless an immediate danger to human life cannot otherwise be prevented and that the use of fire must be proportional to the threat.”

You can be certain that the devastated parents of Wisam Qasrawi, 21 who buried their beloved child – transformed from family breadwinner into a martyr by lawless zionist bullets – know Wisam was killed in an indisputable and illegal extrajudicial execution.

Wisam was born in a village, Misilya. It was described for  the Palestine Exploration Fund  (patron was Queen Victoria) by Royal Engineers’ surveyor Lieutenant Condor in 1881 as a village with ancient wells beneath it and a rounded hilltop above with  extensive views north east across the great plain to Nazareth, west to Carmel, and to Jenin behind a neighbouring hill, ‘north west across a broad corn vale’.

Today, Misilya continues its ancient agricultural lineage of growing olives and cereal. Its 3000 residents are close-knit and mainly poor because of the crippling zionist occupation.

 Wisam was outgoing, energetic, well liked and had lots of friends with whom he enjoyed playing playstation and billiards at the local cafe. Wisam also had an admirable sense of responsibility; he left school in year 11 to become the family breadwinner because his father had a severe back injury and his mother had small twins plus his other younger siblings to care for. Even while at school he worked as a part-time farm or building labourer to help out.

The early morning of Sunday 17th, January gave no hint of impending tragedy. Wisam got dressed for his work at a brick/stone factory in Nablus, gave his mother the remaining money in his wallet and armed only with his mobile joined his mate who was giving him a lift as far as the Huwwara checkpoint. He was dropped off about 500 yards from the checkpoint.

 Eyewitnesses reported that the heavily armed soldiers were calling out to Wisam, “Come on, come to us”. Wisam walked, relaxed and hands in the air, and at 50 metres military shots burst hitting his chest and head. Typically, he was left to bleed out and die.
Within 10 minutes, even before Wisam’s mate returned to Misilya, the zionist news reported an alleged attempted stabbing at the Huwwara checkpoint with no soldiers injured (understandable).

By the afternoon the ZOF had made incursions into Wisam’s village, set up checkpoints and closed off the village which was in collective shock, helplessness, anger and mourning.

Wisam’s body was returned at night and respectfully given a martyr’s burial; the body is not washed as usual with scented water and wrapped in a shroud, but the martyr is buried in the clothes in which he/she died and the blood is left unwashed. According to a Hadith – on Resurrection Day, the Shahid’s blood -“Its color saffron, and its odor musk”.

With 68 years of the violent unrestricted bloodletting of martyrs, the scent of this holy musk is tragically Palestine’s oxygen.

Wisam is no more, just as Ehab, Khalil, Ahmad, Ruqayya, Dania, Nihad, Fuad, Naim, and all the other young innocent invisible-knife wielders, are no more.

The UN was set up to maintain international peace, security and human rights for all. In 68 years, the now 192 member states of the UN have not furthered one moment of peace and justice for the people of Palestine.

The zionist state has over and over, day to day, blatantly violated every UN declaration and convention it has ratified and it has never been suspended or expelled from the UN,

“A Member of the United Nations which has persistently violated the Principles contained in the present Charter may be expelled from the Organization by the General Assembly upon the recommendation of the Security Council.”

The UN is as fake as the fake knives of Allege-gate. Both are smokescreens for impunity for zionist brutality and crimes against humanity.

Dunk on Hate and Mad at the World

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Israel’s Diplomatic Wars of Aggression

By Richard Edmondson

Israel these days seems to be increasingly at odds with a good portion of the rest of the world. In just the past few months it has quarreled with:

  • Spain over arrest warrants issued for Netanyahu and six other Israeli officials for the 2010 attack on the Gaza Freedom Flotilla;
  • Sweden over comments by its foreign minister who has called for an investigation into extrajudicial executions of Palestinians;
  • college campus student groups supporting the BDS movement;
  • academic associations who have issued calls for academic boycotts of Israeli universities;
  • Brazil over its refusal to recognize an Israeli ambassador who hails from the right-wing Israeli settler movement;
  • The EU over labeling of products from Israeli settlements.
  • The UN over Ban Ki-moon’s recent criticism of the settlements

And really, if truth be known, Israel is probably not too happy just now with Italy either, which recently received Iranian President Hassan Rouhani on a state visit, resulting in a number of agreements between the two countries’ energy sectors as well as cooperation on a future high-speed rail project. Naor Gilon, the Israeli ambassador to Italy, complained that Rouhani was being treated like “the king of the world.”

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Zvi Zameret accuses Wallström of ‘ignorance and arrogance’ and suggests she might meet a violent end

War with Sweden

All in all, Gilon’s comments would have to be viewed as rather tame, however–at least by comparison. For some of the statements issuing from Israelis now, particularly those aimed at Swedish Foreign Minister Margot Wallström, are positively chilling in their level of malice expressed, and frankly it might behoove the Swedish official to consider hiring a bodyguard at this point, if she hasn’t already done so.

As I noted in an article five days ago, Wallström is now regarded in Israel as “public enemy number 1” (the Jerusalem Post’s words, not mine) because of remarks she has made critical of Israel, including a recent call for an investigation into extrajudicial killings of Palestinians.

Now it seems there may be those in Israel hankering for the foreign minister’s blood–literally. If you haven’t read my article, Swedish Media Target Country’s Foreign Minister Following Her Remarks on Israel, I suggest you do so as it will place what follows into greater perspective. One day after posting that article, I became aware of two other articles, one by blogger Richard Silverstein and the other by Jonathan Ofir and posted at Mondoweiss, both of which discuss what appears to have been a scarcely veiled threat on Wallström’s life by a former Israeli official.

The comment was made by Zvi Zameret, a former official in the Israeli Ministry of Education, in an op-ed piece he wrote for an Israeli newspaper owned by Nevada casino magnate Sheldon Adelson. In the article, Zameret waxes lyrical on the 1948 assassination of Swedish diplomat Folke Bernadotte, and then goes on to suggest that Wallström might meet a similar fate. Here is a bit from Silverstein’s commentary on the matter:

Zvi Zameret, the former director for instruction for the Israeli education ministry has written an op-ed in Makor Rishon, Sheldon Adelson’s pro-settler newspaper, praising the 1948 assassination of UN mediator Count Folke Bernadotte by Yitzhak Shamir’s Lehi gang. Zameret accuses Bernadotte of being an anti-Semite and claims that his views originated in a Swedish society that was suffused with this perspective.  He claims that ridding the world of the Swedish Count was necessary to protect Israel’s new existence.

He wends his way through a long historical discourse involving material already well-known related to Bernadotte’s proposals, which were rejected by Arabs and Jews alike.  Then he brings us up to the present day by alleging that remarks of the current Swedish Foreign Minister, Margot Wallstrom, demanding that Israel be held accountable for the 160 Palestinians killed over the past two months in the latest Intifada, stem from the same well of Swedish anti-Semitism.

Silverstein says Zameret “hints that Wallström herself should share a similar fate to Bernadotte” and then gives us a direct quote from his article as per its English translation:

“What do the things I have mentioned attest about Bernadotte? [They indicate] covert anti-Semitism, ignorance and arrogance, collaboration with senior elements in Israel [Hebrew University President Judah Magnes] and interests that play a decisive role. Has anything changed in the Swedish DNA in the decades following Bernadotte’s death? Nothing has changed.

The Swedish foreign minister Margot Wallstrom, in the covert anti-Semitism which characterizes her, along with her ignorance and arrogance, and anticipation of the interests of her future Muslim voters–she too is attempting to battle against the basic foundation of the State of Israel.  I am certain that her intentions will be defeated, just as were those of the disreputable Count Bernadotte.

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Count Folke Bernadotte

Bernadotte was assassinated by Lehi, also known as the Stern Gang, the same Jewish terrorist group that carried out the Deir Yassin massacre. Zameret’s glorification of his murder doesn’t seem entirely lucid or rational–during World War II Bernadottenegotiated the release of 31,000 prisoners from German concentration camps, including a large number of Jews. After the war, he became the UN Security Council’s unanimous choice, in a vote on May 20, 1948, to try and mediate a settlement in the Palestine-Israeli conflict.

His murder took place September 17, 1948, carried out by a four-man team of assassins. The Stern Gang had been around since 1940. Its stated goal was to terminate the British mandate in Palestine and set up  a “new totalitarian Hebrew republic,” and one of its members, Yithak Shamir, ended up becoming an Israeli prime minister. It was Shamir, in fact, who ordered Bernadotte’s assassination. The man who actually pulled the trigger, Yehoshau Cohen, later became a close confidante of David Ben Gurion and was never charged in the case.

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Margot Wallström

In October of 2014, shortly after Wallström took over as foreign minister, Sweden became one of the first Western countries to recognize Palestinian statehood. Wallström called it “an important step that confirms the Palestinians’ right to self-determination”  and added that “We hope that this will show the way for others.”

In November of last year, shortly after the Paris terror attacks, Wallström suggested that Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians could be helping to fuel terrorism. She followed that up with a comment in December about Israeli “extrajudicial executions,” and this month called for an investigation of Israel.

“Whether Zameret advocates Wallstrom’s demise explicitly or implicitly is hardly important,” comments Silverstein. “Even if you accept the argument that he isn’t explicit, clearly the reason Bernadotte failed in his mission is that Jewish terrorists assassinated him.  When you say you wish her intentions to be defeatedjust as his were, the line between murder and political defeat becomes exceedingly murky.”

Boycott Sweden! say Israeli Mayors

But of course it isn’t just Zameret. Lots of people in Israel despise Wallström and have “vociferously attacked her contentious words,” as an article here puts it. And this apparently applies to a good many Israeli officials. The same article goes on to give us the low-down on a “boycott movement” launched by 15 Israeli mayors and aimed at Sweden. The mayors were planning to attend a conference in the Scandinavian country in March, but recently announced they have cancelled, while former Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman has also called for a boycott of Ikea.

War With Spain

In November of last year, a Spanish judge issued arrest warrants for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and six other officials in connection with Israel’s 2010 raid on the Gaza Freedom Flotilla, a violent episode in international waters which resulted in the deaths of 10 people.

The warrants were issued by Judge Jose de la Mata, and in  effect meant that should any of the seven officials set foot on Spanish soil they would be subject to arrest.

“Spain is just the latest member of the international community to accuse Israel of war crimes and pursue Israeli officials over the affair,” the Jerusalem Postreported at the time. And that is indeed correct. Both South Africa and Turkey had previously issued similar warrants.

Predictably, the Israeli government expressed hostility and outrage.

“We consider it to be a provocation,” said an Israeli foreign ministry spokesperson. “We are working with the Spanish authorities to get it cancelled. We hope it will be over soon.”

What do you suppose the words “working with Spanish authorities” might imply? Did it include issuing threats? Whatever it was, it took only two months to accomplish. The arrest warrants were in fact cancelled, according to a report published January 13 by the Adelson-owned Israel Hayom newspaper.

War with Brazil

Brazil, on the other hand, seems to be showing a little more resilience. According to a report here, “Israel and Brazil remain at loggerheads five months after Brazil refused to recognize Israel’s appointment of a right-wing settler as its next envoy to the South American country.”

“Settlers are Zionist agents that the world cannot accept, they steal others’ land, they are an insult to Brazil, to the government, and to millions of Brazilians with roots in the Arab world,” said Brazilian parliament member Carlos Maron.

Maron isn’t alone. A group of 40 retired Brazilian diplomats signed a statementagainst the appointment of Dani Dayan, who lives in the Israeli settlement of Ma’ale Shomron, in the Occupied West Bank. Dayan is an advocate of the settler movement and has made no secret of his views, having widely published articles in the mainstream media, including the New York Times.

“We consider it unacceptable that the Prime Minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu, has publicly announced the name of the person he intended to appoint as his country’s new Ambassador to Brazil before submitting it, in accordance to the norm, to our Government,” said the diplomats. The announcement of Dayan’s appointment was reportedly posted initially on Twitter rather than being communicated directly to the Brazilian government.

The statement continues:

This rupture with a diplomatic practice seems to have been on purpose, an attempt to establish facts, since the appointed, Dani Dayan, between 2007 and 2013, was the President of the Yesha Council, responsible for the settlements in the West Bank, which are considered illegal by the international community, and has already declared himself contrary to the creation of the Palestinian State, which counts on the support of the Brazilian Government and was already recognized by over 70% of the UN member States.

Reportedly a group of 200 Brazilian academics have also endorsed a boycott of Israel. Netanyahu has refused to withdraw Dayan’s nomination or to appoint someone more acceptable to the Brazilians. If the Brazilian government stands its ground, it will mean a de facto end to diplomatic relations between the two countries.

War with the EU

On January 18, the EU’s Foreign Affairs Council reaffirmed requirements that export products from the Israeli settlements be labeled as such. More or less as with Sweden, Spain, and Brazil, the EU’s action has prompted cries of Israeli outrage. Netanyahu pronounced his unwillingness to “accept the fact that the EU labels the side being attacked by terror,” while ‘Justice’ Minister Ayelet Shaked called the EU measure “anti-Israel and anti-Jewish.”

Likewise, opposition party leader Isaac Herzog (supposedly a liberal) compared it to the “Zionism equals Racism” resolution passed by the UN in 1974, while Yair Lapid, another opposition party member, denounced the EU for “capitulating to the worse elements of jihad.”

War Against the BDS Movement

In summer of 2015, ‘Justice’ minister Shaked announced she was preparing lawsuits against BDS activists. The announcement was reported at the time by theTimes of Israel in a story which also mentions that Shaked has expanded one of the departments within her ministry in order to “push ahead with the program as soon as possible.”

Ministry officials believe that legal circumstances present the option of suing activists for damaging Israeli trade, and for discrimination and racism, based upon laws as they currently exist in various countries, the report said.

So far as I’m aware, no lawsuits have been filed against individual activists, however Naftali Bennett, leader of the Jewish Home Party, seems to be generally in support of the idea of striking back in some manner at the BDS movement.

“Let it be clear to any company or organization that’s considering boycotting us: We will hit back. We will attack our attackers. We will boycott our boycotters,” Bennett said.

“The boycott weapon is a double-edged sword,” he added. “If you’re thinking of boycotting Israel, keep in mind that there are tens of millions of Israel supporters around the world — Jews and non-Jews — with considerable buying power and boycott power. Whoever boycotts Israel will be boycotted. Whoever hits Israel, will be hit back. We will no longer remain silent.”

Bennett’s comments about the “tens of millions of Israel supporters around the world” are perhaps salient. Also last summer, Adelson hosted an anti-BDS summit in Las Vegas with the aim of establishing and funding “successful strategies for countering the wave of anti-Israel activity on college campuses.” Held at the billionaire’s Venetian hotel on the Vegas strip, the conference was attended by a number of wealthy Jews, including Haim Saban.

“The key decision reached at the conference was that there would be a concerted effort to curtail BDS,” reported the Jerusalem Post.

Though Netanyahu did not attend, a letter from him was read aloud to the conference participants. “De-legitimization of Israel must be fought, and you are on the front lines. It’s not about this or that Israeli policy. It’s about our right to exist here as a free people,” the letter stated.

Reportedly the Israeli government intends to allocate NIS 100 million, or roughly $25.2 million, to the anti-BDS effort.

War Against Academic Associations

At a business meeting held in November, members of the American Anthropological Association voted overwhelmingly (88.4 percent) in favor of a resolution to boycott Israeli academic institutions. A similar measure was passed that same month by the National Women’s Studies Association Executive Committee. These aren’t the first boycott actions taken by academic organizations in the US. The American Studies Association, The Association for Asian American Studies, and the Native American and Indigenous Studies Association have all passed academic boycott measures against Israel. And this is just in the US.

Measures have also been passed by academic organizations in Brazil, South Africa, Canada, the UK, and, of course, in Palestine, and probably elsewhere. And perhaps most recently a group of 71 British doctors have called upon the World Medical Association to expel the Israeli Medical Association. The physicians have accused Israeli doctors of “medical torture” on Palestinian patients and want to see a ban on joint projects with Israeli universities.

On January 20, the Science and Technology Committee of the Israeli Knesset held a meeting to discuss the issue (H/T Helvena). A press release on the discussion which took place can be found here on the Knessett’s website. One of those who gave input at the meeting was Peretz Lavie, president of Technion, or the Israeli Institute of Technology.

“We have no complaints against the global academic leadership; our problem is the campuses,” Lavie said. “Initially it was insignificant campuses, but it quickly spread to leading campuses in the United States.”

When Lavie says he has “no complaints against the global academic leadership” he is probably referring to the Association of American Universities, which on January 14, in response to the vote by the Anthropological Association, re-issued an earlier statement in opposition to academic boycotts. The AAU is an organization whose leadership consists of the presidents and chancellors of the 60 universities (in both the US and Canada) that are its members. Membership is by invitation only. The group’s statement opposing boycotts was initially released in 2013 in response to the boycott actions taken by the American Studies and Native American and Indigenous Studies associations.

The group’s re-release of that canned statement from more than two years ago was described by the Jerusalem Post as “a blow to the BDS movement.”

“Students who are exposed to this activity will be the next generation`s senators, and therein lies the great danger in the long term,” Lavie went on in his testimony before the Science and Technology Committee.

“In its report, the American Anthropological Association referred to us as universities of apartheid and decided to conduct a survey on whether the Israeli academia should be boycotted. We have to reach all 12,000 members of the Association. It is a symptom, and if we do not act now, it will spread. There must be one entity that will concentrate all the efforts related to this issue,” he added.

Another person who gave testimony was Ze’ev Feldman of the Israel Medical Association. It was Feldman who informed the committee of the recent statement by the 71 British doctors.

”The sword of the boycott is being raised on the Israeli scientific-medical community,” he said.

Ariel University Chancellor Yigal-Cohen Orgad asserted that Israel has “a real problem with governments, including western governments that encourage boycotts,” while Professor Zvi Ziegler warned, “We are unable to stop anyone with our meager resources.”

Several committee members are also quoted, including Chairman Uri Maklev:

“There is no doubt that the academic boycott phenomenon is expanding and is connected to the financial and consumer boycotts on Israel. Economic and commercial boycotts are associated with politics, but an academic boycott by educated and moderate people has a very strong effect.”

But rather than calling for an end to the settlements, most of the committee members seemed to be of the opinion that the Israeli government needed to devote more resources to fighting the boycott movement. The one exception to this was Arab Knesset member Basel Ghattas:

The world considers the settlements to be illegitimate. You can think differently from the entire world, it is your right, but it is also the world`s right to take measures in order to force you to establish two states.

War with the UN

On October 1, 2015, Netanyahu gave a speech before the United Nations General Assembly that was marked by a 45-second segment during which he paused and projected hostile glares out at those present:

On January 26, 2016, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon broke the UN’s “deafening silence” and, in a rare display of courage, issued a scathing criticism of Israel’s settlement policies.

Progress towards peace requires a freeze of Israel’s settlement enterprise.

Continued settlement activities are an affront to the Palestinian people and to the international community.  They rightly raise fundamental questions about Israel’s commitment to a two-state solution.

I am deeply troubled by reports today that the Israeli Government has approved plans for over 150 new homes in illegal settlements in the occupied West Bank.

This is combined with its announcement last week declaring 370 acres in the West Bank, south of Jericho, as so-called “state land”.  These provocative acts are bound to increase the growth of settler populations, further heighten tensions and undermine any prospects for a political road ahead.

The inevitable furious response came quickly, with Netanyahu excoriating the UN chief for helping to “stoke terror.”

“There is no justification for terrorism,” he said. “The Palestinian terrorists don’t want to build a state; they want to destroy a state, and they say that proudly. They want to murder Jews everywhere and they state that proudly. They don’t murder for peace and they don’t murder for human rights.”

He went on to assert that the UN has “lost its neutrality and its moral force, and these statements by the Secretary-General do nothing to improve its situation.”

latuff_incite

It seems Israel is now at war with the UN as well.

A Lack of Imagination?

 Perhaps most striking in all this is the Israeli lack of imagination–or at least that is one way of looking at it. Nowhere in his hostile comments aimed at his various enemies on the global stage does Netanyahu give the slightest indication of having once thought about halting the settlements and pulling back to Israel’s internationally recognized pre-1967 borders. Ditto with the other Israeli officials quoted above, with the lone exception of the Arab Knessett member. It is almost as if the idea has never even occurred to them.

If that  is the case, one could perhaps ascribe all of this to a lack of imagination. Certainly at this point, after 68 years of oppression, is probably does indeedrequire considerable imagination to conceive of how the two peoples could live at peace. But of course it wasn’t always so. And had Israel, starting in 1967, respected the people of the West Bank, and above all else respected their space rather than crowding them in with settlements and walls and soldiers, a peaceful resolution to the conflict probably could have and would have been achieved by this time.

Yet even now, it isn’t too late. Though it would be politically difficult, Israel coulddismantle its settlements (anything is possible when the national will is present) and pull back to the pre-1967 borders–basically the terms of the Arab Peace Initiative proposed back in 2002. If necessary, and it probably would be for a lengthy period of time, UN peacekeeping troops could be deployed along the border.

But Israel’s response to the Arab Peace Initiative was to call it a “non-starter,” and that seems to be its position today as well. And not only is there little prospect of dismantling of presently-existing settlements, but we see even a refusal to halt the construction of new ones. All of which would suggest that Ban Ki-moon is correct and that the settlement enterprise raises “fundamental questions about Israel’s commitment to a two-state solution.”

Or in other words, Israel has no intentions of making peace.

Certainly it’s possible that things could change, and that a new slate of leaders could arise in Israel with the imagination necessary to see the wisdom of complying with international norms of conduct. And that is what its more liberal Jewish supporters in America seem to be hoping for. But failing this, Israel’s wars with the rest of the world are likely to grow in stridency and ferociousness, and at some point could expand from the realms of diplomacy and/or covert operations fully outright into the military arena.

israel Must Now Open Its Nuclear Program to IAEA Inspection, or Face Sanctions

Israel Must Now Open Its Nuclear Program to IAEA Inspection, or Face Sanctions

Logo of the International Atomic Energy Agency.

Iran has currently met its obligations to the IAEA under the 2015 US-­led agreement with the UN and now IT is the time for Israel to submit its nuclear program to UNSC inspection or face international sanctions. The imperative is for:

1. The Negev Nuclear Research Center at Dimona to be fully opened to inspection by the IAEA and its estimated undeclared stockpile of up to 400 nuclear warheads be put under UN supervision for eventual destruction other than those required for legitimate defence purposes, estimated not to exceed five warheads (5) in total.

2. Israel’s capacity for uranium enrichment to be severely limited for a minimum of 15 years and that all its centrifuges in excess of 5000 to be dismantled under IAEA supervision

3. That all supplies of heavy water be shipped to the US or other approved recipient, apart from the minimum required for legitimate medical isotopes

4. That inspections teams from the IAEA continuously monitor all Israeli nuclear sites and to verify all fissile materials thereupon.

5. That the state of Israel to become a party to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) with immediate effect.

The timescale for all such specified actions to be approved by the United Nations Assembly in General Session.

Note

1. http://fas.org/nuke/guide/israel/nuke/farr.htm

Yemen Ousted Gov’t Expels UN Rights Official after Reporting Saudi Violations

Local Editor

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Thursday condemned Yemeni ousted government’s decision to expel the leading UN rights official in the country.

Yemen’s exiled foreign ministry accused George Abu al-Zulof of “lacking impartiality” in his assessments of the human rights situation in the country and declared him persona non grata.

The office of the UN high commissioner for human rights said Tuesday that its staff in Yemen had found remnants of 29 cluster bombs during a field visit in Haradh district in the northwest.Saudi-led coalition using cluster bombs against Yemenis

The decision came just days after the United Nations raised alarm over the use of cluster bombs by the Saudi-led coalition which has been since March in 2015 waging a brutal war against Yemen.

Ban said in a statement that he has “full confidence” in Zulof and urged the ousted government “to reconsider its position on his expulsion.”

Ban said the exiled government was failing to uphold its obligations by “impeding the United Nations human rights work.”

The people of Yemen have suffered “grave human rights violations” and the UN rights office is “actively and effectively helping to document these violations,” Ban said.

UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric earlier described the decision to expel Zulof as “an extremely regrettable development” and praised the official for doing an “excellent job.”

Ban added that he was extremely concerned about the safety of the remaining national and international staff.

Yemen has been since March 26 under brutal aggression by Saudi-led coalition.
Thousands have been martyred and injured in the attack, with the vast majority of them are civilians.

Riyadh launched the attack on Yemen in a bid to restore power to fugitive president Abd Rabbu Mansour Hadi who is a close ally to Saudi Arabia.

Source: AFP

08-01-2016 – 09:33 Last updated 08-01-2016 – 09:34

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UN’s Ban Ki-moon’s Complicity in israel’s Occupation and War Crimes

Ban Ki-moon’s Complicity in Israel’s Occupation and War Crimes

By Jeremy R. Hammond

 

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon recently wrote an op-ed in the Israeli daily Haaretz titled “Israelis and Palestinians Need Two States Before It Is Too Late“.

He talks about how he visited Israel and Gaza “with a clear goal”, which ultimately was to “reestablish a political horizon that can lead to lasting peace.”

To that end, he announces, “we must spare no effort to bring the Israelis and Palestinians back to meaningful negotiations.”

One required step is to “rebuild trust and encourage bold and significant measures on the ground that will tangibly improve lives and irreversibly move toward the end of occupation and the establishment of a Palestinian state.”

That is needed in order “to establish the appropriate international infrastructure, through the United Nations and the Quartet, that supports and encourages negotiations and a comprehensive and just resolution of the conflict.”

Translated, some purely symbolic gesture is needed from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, perhaps such as another meaningless so-called settlement “freeze”, to make it politically feasible for the illegitimate Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to return to talks.
And the “peace process”, of course, is simply the process by which the US and Israel block implementation of the two-state solution to the conflict.

So maybe another meaningless so-called settlement “freeze” will be needed.

Ban Ki-moon is a disgrace to his office. He has been complicit in Israel’s crimes against the Palestinians during his time in office.

He has been complicit in his role as a member of “The Quartet”, which is nothing more than a tool whereby the US pursues its policy of rejecting Palestinian self-determination.

But Ban’s role has gone far beyond simply preserving the status quo of occupation…

Complicity Israeli War Crimes During Operation Cast Lead
In the aftermath of Israel’s 2008-2009 massacre in Gaza, “Operation Cast Lead”, during which Israel targeted the civilian infrastructure, including numerous UN buildings such as schools, there was a UN Board of Inquiry. Here’s an excerpt from my forthcoming book, Obstacle to Peace: The US Role in the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict about the role Ban Ki-moon played in that episode:

The US had already been hard at work behind the scenes to protect Israel from being held accountable for its attacks on UN facilities—a task in which it found a willing accomplice in its Quartet partner the UN Secretary General. Ambassador Susan Rice had spoken with Ban Ki-moon three times on May 4 to express the US’s concerns over the Board of Inquiry’s report. Washington was particularly worried about its recommendations to investigate other incidents involving UN premises and personnel that were not included in the Board’s terms of reference, as well as incidents unrelated to the UN that involved civilians. According to leaked State Department cable, Rice “underscored the importance of having a strong cover letter that made clear that no further action was needed and would close out this issue.” Ban Ki-moon told Rice that he “was constrained in what he could do since the Board of Inquiry was independent”, and he could not alter their report and recommendations. He assured Rice that his staff was, however, “working with an Israeli delegation on the text of the cover letter.” Rice thanked him “for his exceptional efforts on such a sensitive issue.”

Furthermore:

It’s useful to also note, with regard to Ban Ki-moon’s role as a tool of US foreign policy, that after a delegation of Arab foreign ministers met with the permanent members of the Security Council on January 5, 2009, to press for an immediate ceasefire resolution, the Secretary General assured the US Ambassador to the UN, Zalmay Khalilzad, that “he was sympathetic to Israel’s position, even if he would then be forced to shore up his image in the Arab world by reacting to Israel’s ground operation in Gaza.” The fact that the Secretary-General expressed his sympathies not for the victims, but the perpetrator of the massacre, and would only speak out against Israel’s war crimes because he was “forced” to under public pressure is a remarkable illustration of his willingness to serve US interests in a manner conflicting with the duties of his office.

And:

Under Ban Ki-moon’s leadership, the UN ultimately received $10.5 million in compensation from Israel for damages, which “concluded” the matter as far as he was concerned. Amnesty International criticized the Secretary-General for securing compensation for the UN “without securing compensation for any of the actual victims of the attacks”—despite the Board of Inquiry’s specific recommendation that the UN seek compensation for civilian victims of attacks not involving UN facilities or personnel. “Surely, the acceptance of this sum for damage to UN buildings can only be the first step in repairing the damage caused by the conflict,” Amnesty said in a letter to the Secretary-General. “The UN cannot ignore the lack of reparations to the hundreds of women, men and children who were killed, injured or the thousands who lost property during the Gaza conflict in attacks that violated international humanitarian law.”

Complicity in Israel’s Collective Punishment of Gaza
And then there was the “Palmer Report” produced under the auspices of the Secretary-General’s office.

In short, that Israel’s blockade of the Gaza Strip constitutes an illegal act of collective punishment in violation of the Fourth Geneva Convention and other relevant international law is completely uncontroversial. It is a simple point of fact. The entire world recognizes this, as reflected in UN Security Council Resolution 1860 calling for

  • an end to it …
  • the discussion in the UN Security Council following Israel’s murderous attack on the humanitarian flotilla attempting to break the blockade in May 2010 …
  • the report of the UN Fact-Finding Mission on the Gaza Conflict …
  • countless statements and reports from numerous UN bodies …
  • the International Committee of the Red Cross …
  • international humanitarian organizations like Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch …
  • Israeli human rights groups like B’Tselem and Gisha….

But Ban Ki-moon commissioned a panel consisting of two former heads of state with no credentials on international law to produce a report with the political goal of finding a way to “put the incident behind” and “move on”, which it did by declaring that the blockade is not illegal by employing the petitio principii fallacy: it arrived at this conclusion by simply assuming as a premise that it was not a part of a policy of collective punishment (an assumption it supported with nothing more than numerous references to Israel’s own Turkel Commission report on the incident).

Not that the Panel had a mandate to make legal findings about the blockade. On the contrary the report explicitly noted this judgment exceeded the mandate it was given and was non-authoritative.

It was a total farce, an absolute disgrace to his office, and yet it did the job. The New York Times, for example, repeatedly educated its readers about the legality of Israel’s blockade by stating that Israel said it was legal, and that Israel’s position was supported by the Palmer Report … and that was it. Never mind the numerous authoritative judgments of UN, ICRC, etc.

Readers needn’t know any of that. Apologists for Israeli crimes were able to declare that “the UN” had declared the blockade was legal — the actual facts notwithstanding.

Then there was the Quartet statement in response to Israel’s deadly attack on the flotilla (nine civilians were killed, including an American citizen).

Another excerpt:

The purpose of the Quartet statement, however, was not to demand that Israel end its siege, but to warn the flotilla participants against sailing to Gaza and to demand that they deliver any goods “through established channels”—meaning to cooperate with and legitimize Israel’s siege by delivering humanitarian aid to Israel for it to deliver (or not). The Quartet blamed the killing of civilians aboard the Mavi Marmara the previous year not on Israel, but on the victims (“the injury and deaths”, it said, were “caused by the 2010 flotilla”). Only within this context did the statement urge “restraint”. Instead of warning Israel against again violating international law and assaulting civilians, Washington’s Quartet partners joined in calling on any concerned governments “to use their influence to discourage additional flotillas”.

Conducting Hasbara for Israel
When Israel launched “Operation Pillar of Defense” in 2012, Ban Ki-moon played the role of Israeli propagandist. Another excerpt from my book:

The day Palestinian groups agreed to the ceasefire, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon saw fit to issue a statement condemning indiscriminate rocket attacks by Palestinians while saying nothing about Israel’s attacks resulting in the killing of Palestinian civilians. Instead, the US’s Quartet partner essentially provided Israel a green light of his own, calling on its government to merely “exercise maximum restraint” and echoing Israel’s own narrative that the recent burst of violence had started with a Palestinian attack on an IDF jeep.

Never mind that the attack was against Israeli forces that had invaded Gaza and were in Gaza at the time.

Never mind that the attack on the jeep was retaliation for the murder of a 13-year-old boy earlier that morning by IDF forces in Gaza.

Never mind that it was Israel that violated the aforementioned ceasefire by launching its “Operation Pillar of Defense” with a surprise attack to assassinate a Hamas official.

Complicity in Israel’s Settlement and Occupation Regime
Then there is Ban’s complicity in Israel’s occupation regime as the US’s partner in “The Quartet”. Again from my book, with reference to an Israeli announcement of additional illegal settlement construction in East Jerusalem:

The US responded by immediately issuing a joint statement with its Quartet partners taking note of the application and affirming “its determination to actively and vigorously seek a comprehensive resolution of the Arab-Israeli conflict, on the basis of UN Security Council Resolutions 242, 338, 1397, 1515, 1850, the Madrid principles including land for peace, the Roadmap, and the agreements previously reached between the parties”. It called upon both parties “to refrain from provocative actions” and “reiterated the obligations of both parties under the Roadmap”. It then rendered this all meaningless by reiterating its call for the resumption of negotiations “without delay or preconditions”, the standard code letting Israel know that it could feel free to continue violating previous agreements and international law with impunity. Reporting on the Quartet statement, the New York Times perceived how, “before the thunderous applause greeting his announcement in the General Assembly had faded, international powers laid out a new plan to resume direct Israeli-Palestinian peace talks that was designed to delay a contentious vote on the Palestinian request as long as possible.” The text of the statement was nevertheless still “heavily diluted” from what the US would have liked, having “failed to achieve a consensus” among its Quartet partners.

The government of Israel, however, was satisfied with what the US was able to accomplish on its behalf. “We were pleased to see that the Quartet has called for an immediate return of the Palestinians to the negotiating table with us, without preconditions,” lauded Michael Oren. “The US and Israel are more closely coordinated now than they have been at any time in the last two years, or more,” he added. “We see things very much eye-to-eye on how to move forward.”

The euphemism “without preconditions” simply meant while Israel’s illegal colonization of the West Bank was ongoing; the Palestinian side’s demand that Israel cease this violation of international law was deemed a “precondition” by Israel and the US and thus something that should not occur. (The US even went so far as to veto an uncontroversial UN Security Council resolution condemning Israel’s illegal settlements.)

Another example, with reference to Palestine’s bid — dubbed a “unilateral” action by the US and Israel — at the UN to achieve an upgrade of status in the General Assembly to non-member state — a recognition of statehood that would allow Palestine access to international legal mechanisms such as the International Court of Justice (ICJ) and International Criminal Court (ICC):

On April 11 [2012], the Quartet issued a statement describing Israel’s “continued settlement activity” as being among “unilateral and provocative actions by either party”—thus drawing equivalence between Palestinian appeals for recognition of their rights and Israeli violations of international law. The statement asserted that such actions “cannot prejudge the outcome of negotiations”. Then it rendered that meaningless, insofar as it applied to Israel, by declaring that talks under the existing framework—in which international law was deemed immaterial and Palestinians’ rights subject to negotiation—were “the only way to a just and durable solution to the conflict.”

Ban Ki-moon speaks of the need for Palestinians to have a state of their own and for an end to the occupation while his actions have served only to perpetuate that same occupation that denies the Palestinians their right to self-determination.

He speaks of peace while his actions have served only to ensure impunity for Israeli war crimes against the Palestinians and collective punishment of the entire civilian population of Gaza.

Ban Ki-moon washes the outside of his cup while the inside is full of uncleanliness; he is like a whitewashed tomb which on the outside appears beautiful but on the inside is full of decay.

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President Bashar Al-Assad’s Message to the West: It is Illegal to Bomb our Country

President Bashar Al-Assad’s Message to the West: It is Illegal to Bomb our Country

Interview with Netherlands PO2 TV

al-Assad

President Bashar al-Assad affirmed that the majority of international reports about Syria are politicized, incredible and financed by the Qataris and Saudis.

President al-Assad added in an interview given to Netherlands NPO2 TV that the western policy towards counter-terrorism file is not objective and not stable.

Following is the full text;

Question 1: Mr. President, after four years of civil war in your country, what’s left of Syria?

President Assad: What’s left is about the people. If you talk about the infrastructure, many have been destroyed during the last four years and few months, but it’s about the people, what’s left of the people, that is the question, and it’s about how much they withstand this dark ideology that the terrorists brought with them from different countries. I think the majority of the people now support their government, regardless of their political spectrum, and they still support the unity of Syria and the integration of the society as one society with multi-color aspects.

Question 2: Now, we hear shelling every day, even here in Damascus, even close by to where we are now. You said there is unity, the people believe in their government. Are you still so confident about that?

President Assad: I’m more confident than before, to be frank, because if you go to the areas under the control of the government, you can see all the different colors of the Syrian society with no exception. If you go to the areas where the terrorists control, you can see either part of this Syrian spectrum, social spectrum, or you can see no inhabitants, only fighters. So the contrast is very clear.

Question 3: Now, roughly 4,000 Syrians flee your country every day, 4.3 million up to date, and you must hear some of their stories, why they are leaving. How does it make you feel if you hear that?

President Assad: They are sad stories. It’s about the hardship of every single person, every single family. We live with these stories on a daily basis, as you mentioned. But it’s not enough to feel; what can we do? They left because of the terrorist attacks, direct attacks, because the terrorists attacked the infrastructure, and because of the Western embargo that led to the same target of the terrorists, directly or indirectly. I think most of those are ready to go back to their country. They still love their country, but living in Syria could be unbearable for them for different circumstances.

Question 4: You say most of them are ready to come back, but from many stories they tell, they flee from terrorism, of course, but a lot of them flee from your government, your armed forces, as well.

President Assad: You are in Syria now, you can go to the areas under our control. You can see that some of the families of the terrorists or the extremists or the militants, whatever you want to call them, live under the supervision of the government and the support of the government. So, why didn’t those families leave Syria?

Question 5: Okay, while we hear stories in the West of Syrians coming here, they talk about torture, widespread, people in prison, things done by your armed forces. That’s the reason why they leave. Is there truth to their stories?

President Assad: Let’s talk about the facts. The facts will tell you if it’s true or not. If you are torturing your people, attacking, killing, and so on, and you have the enmity of Western governments, the strongest countries in the world, the richest countries like in the Gulf, like Turkey, our neighbors, are against me as president or against the government, how could you withstand for nearly five years in such circumstances if you don’t have public support? And how can you have public support if you are torturing your people? I mean, if you have mistakes in reality, that could happen, that would happen anywhere.

Question 6: So there are mistakes?

President Assad: Of course, especially when there is war, you could have a single mistake committed by a single person, that would happen. You have chaos, sometimes that would happen, we don’t exclude this. But there’s a difference between having this kind of mistakes and having a policy in order to torture your people and lose their support.

Question 7: You say there is no such policy?

President Assad: No, definitely.

Question 8: Because today, Human Rights Watch, and the UN before that, came out with a report saying there’s widespread, as they call it, “death and dying in detention centers, since the uprising in 2011.” Is there any truth to that?

President Assad: If you want to verify the credibility of those reports, to say that they’re not politicized, they’re not talking about one side of the story. You mentioned the shelling of Damascus a few days go, and that happens every few days, killing many civilians, innocent civilians. Did they mention anything about this in the reports? You have many pieces of evidence that’s been published by the terrorists on the internet, photos, videos, about torturing, about killing, about beheading. Did they mention those stories?

Question 9: So it’s one sided? Even the UN?

President Assad: Of course, definitely, it’s politicized. Even the UN, it’s controlled by the United States, and the United States is against Syria. This is the reality, everybody knows it.

Question 10: But you are part of the UN. Syria is part of the UN family.

President Assad: Of course, but the UN is a biased institution because it is under the control of the United States and its allies.

Question 11: And so, you say reports about widespread torture, human rights violations after 2011, those are biased, not true?

President Assad: They are based on stories. Stories, you can pay anyone to tell you any story, like the Qataris are doing this. They publish many reports financed by the Qataris, by the Saudis, this means nothing. You want to make investigations, come to Syria. You have reality, it’s obvious.

Question 12: They say it’s difficult to come to Syria and doing independent investigation.

President Assad: No, it’s not difficult. You are here, so anybody could do the same. Otherwise, if it’s difficult for them to come, it’s going to be difficult for them to judge the situation and to make reports.

Question 13: Moving on. As you know, we are from Holland, from the Netherlands, and my country is bombing ISIS just across the border here in Iraq. They are fighting the same enemy as you are. Would you consider the Netherlands an ally?

President Assad: It depends on the real intention. What do you mean by fighting terrorists? Is it just because ISIS came here? Is it because you are afraid of their influence or effects in your region? If the incentive is fear, no, we’re not allies.

Question 14: You think the incentive is fear?

President Assad: Yes, not values. Because why didn’t they fight terrorism from the very beginning, before ISIS appeared? You had al-Nusra, you had Al Qaeda, you had many terrorists. You didn’t fight. Only this fight on terrorism started to appear when there was September 11 in the United States, the recent attacks in Paris, and in different European countries, but before that they didn’t say we are at war with terrorism.

Question 15: So you mean they are late? They’re late to the party?

22

President Assad: It should be a matter of principle. When it’s a principle, it should be sustainable, not what you call a kneejerk reaction when something you want to do it just as a reaction to something. So, it’s not principle. Fighting terrorism should be a stable, sustainable principle. This is the way we can be allies.

Question 16: So you say, in our case, Dutch bombers over Iraq bombing ISIS is a kneejerk reaction? It’s not sustainable?

President Assad: It is part of European politics and European politics is part of the American, it’s not independent. Everybody knows this. So, I cannot judge only Dutch politics as an isolated case; it’s part of this, and all this, let’s say, Western politics regarding terrorism, is not objective, and not realistic, and actually not only not productive; it’s counterproductive.

Question 17: Right, because, you would say, well, you would say they’re bombing your enemy, so, well, they’re helping in some way.

President Assad: Because when you don’t have the real intention and the realistic vision, the result will be in the other direction. You’ve been bombing, maybe you had intentions. Maybe, I mean, the politicians in your country, have good intentions, but what is the reality?

Question 18: So bombing is not working?

President Assad: It’s not working. You cannot fight terrorism without troops on the ground, and without a real incubator, a social incubator that supports you in your war against those terrorists.

Question 19: So you say, bombing like the Dutch are doing, is for show?

President Assad: Maybe for show, that depends on the intention. But in reality, for nothing, let’s say, for no avail.

Question 20: Our government is, next month, deciding whether or not they will start bombing in your airspace as well, bombing ISIS targets in Syria, and as they are debating this, what would you tell them?

President Assad: This is illegal. This is against the international law. We are a sovereign country. If you are serious about fighting terrorism, what is the obstacle for that government to call the Syrian government, to say “let’s cooperate in fighting terrorism?” The only obstacle is that the Western policy today towards Syria is “we need to isolate this state, that president, so we cannot deal with him.” Okay, you cannot reach anything then.

Question 21: So you say it’s illegal if the Dutch bomb? They should ask your permission, that’s what you’re saying?

President Assad: The Syrian government’s permission.

Question 22: Have they ever been in touch with you about any of this?

President Assad: No-one of them, no-one. Some European governments send their intelligence in order to make a kind of cooperation, security cooperation, regarding terrorism, because they are afraid of the terrorists. Of course, we refused.

Question 23: Because they say there’s a mandate for it, because Iraq has asked for help, and now we can bomb in Syria as well.

President Assad: No, they cannot, they don’t have the right, this is illegal, in every sense of the word illegal.

Question 24: Now, moving on as well, the Netherlands, for what it’s worth, as you were saying, the Netherlands are also saying if there should be sustainable peace in Syria, that has to be without you. There might be a transitional period, but in the end, it can only be without you. What would you say to a statement like that?

President Assad: If you accept as a Netherlands citizen that somebody in Syria would tell you who’s going to be your Prime Minister or not, we would accept it. But you don’t accept it, and we don’t accept it. As you say, we are a sovereign country, whether they have a good president or bad president, this is a Syrian issue, it’s not European. The Europeans have nothing to do with such a thing. That’s why we don’t respond. We don’t care about it.

Question 25: Right. You don’t care about, in this case, the Dutch-

President Assad: No, no. This is a Syrian issue. The Syrian people would say who’s going to stay or not. If the Syrian people doesn’t want me to stay, I have to leave right away, today.

Question 26: One more question about Holland and our neighboring country Belgium. Hundreds of wannabe Jihadis come here to Syria. Why are they coming here, what are they looking for?

President Assad: The most important question is: why did you have them in Europe? Coming, that’s natural; when you have chaos, when Syria has been turned into a hotbed for terrorism because Europe and Turkey and Saudi Arabia and Qatar and those countries supported terrorists in different ways, of course you’re going to have chaos, and it’s going to be a nexus for terrorism. That’s natural for this, how to say, fertile soil, to attract terrorists from the rest of the world. But the question: why did you have them in Europe? You didn’t deal with terrorism in a realistic base.

Question 27: So what did Europe do wrong in dealing with them?

President Assad: I think it’s about two things, if you ask me about why. First of all, the European governments didn’t do their job to integrate these people in their societies; they lived in a ghetto. When you live in a ghetto, you’re going to be an extremist. The second one, many European officials have sold their values for the petrodollar, and they allowed the Wahabi Saudi institutions to pay money and to bring this dark and this extremist ideology to Europe, and that’s why now you are exporting terrorists to us. We don’t export, actually, they came to Syria, and then they go back to Europe.

Question 28: They come back to us.

President Assad: And the three criminals who committed the attacks in Paris, all of them lived in Europe; Belgium and France and others. They didn’t live in Syria.

Question 29: Now, internationally, the United States always said “President Assad has to go.” Even yesterday, Secretary Kerry said, “well, maybe not immediately, and we’re not looking for a regime change.” Even the French are now saying the President may be part of a solution. Your luck seems to be changing.

President Assad (sarcastically): Thank them for saying that; I was packing my luggage, I had to leave, now I can stay. We never care about whatever they say. They’ve been saying the same for four years now. Did anything change regarding that issue? Nothing. So, this is a Syrian issue, whether it’s Obama or the United States or Europe or any country, we don’t care about it. As long as the Syrians want this president or any other president to be in power, he will be there. So, to say that that he’s leaving now or leaving in six months or six years, it’s not their business, very simply.

Question 30: Okay, but it might help in negotiations, some sort of peace, their attitude towards you.

President Assad: This is not the issue. That depends on the problem that we’ve had in Syria. It has many aspects. What’s the relation between this president or any other president to be in power and ISIS and al-Nusra and Al Qaeda coming to Syria and terrorists killing and beheading? There’s no relation, so this is just to mislead the public opinion, just to say that the problem is in Syria is the president. So, who’s more important, the president or the country? Of course the answer is the country, so the president has to leave. So, this is the equation that they’re trying to promote. The only equation for the president is the public opinion in his country, like your country, like any other country. Other than this, if they are serious in solving the problem in Syria, every European official just trying to deliver homilies that could be suitable for church and for mosque, not for politicians, they have to go and work to stop the flood and the flowing of terrorists and the money and logistic support, armaments, through Turkey. That’s what they have to do.

Question 31: Turkey is the key in all of this?

President Assad: Of course, this is the logistical key. Of course, Saudi Arabia is the other key, with their money and their ideology.

Question 32: Well, coming to that, you say there’s Turkey, Saudi Arabia. Internally, if there is – because there are three different initiatives to come to some sort of peace process – what would be the parties you are willing to negotiate with?

President Assad: Any person who holds armaments and kills people and destroys public and private properties and so on, he’s a terrorist, so we don’t, as a government, we don’t make negotiations with the terrorists.

Question 34: But the problem in this whole conflict is that everybody does that.

President Assad: Exactly. So, how? How to deal with this situation? Because we are very realistic and pragmatic, we made negotiations with groups of militants, not organizations; we don’t recognize them as legitimate, to say we are making negotiations about the future of Syria. All of them are terrorists, and they don’t have any political agenda, by the way. We made negotiations with a group of those in order to go back to their normal lives, to give up their armaments, and to have amnesty, and it worked, and this is a real solution on the ground now. It’s moving from area to area.

Question 35: Because, as I said, all the parties are involved in shelling, killing, your government as well. How about international parties, because they are involved in this conflict as well. Who would you be willing to talk to? Is it the United States, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, or just Iran and Russia?

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President Assad: We are talking to everyone who wants to help in solving the problem. We don’t have a problem about talking. The question is who is ready to deliver? That is the question.

Question 36: And who is ready to deliver?

President Assad: None of them, only Russia and Iran and their allies, and the other countries that support politically the Syrian government or the Syrian legitimacy, but not the West, no-one in the West is ready, few countries are ready, because they don’t dare to make contact with Syria to solve the problem unless the United States wants to impose its agenda on them and on us.

Question 37: But in the end, you would have to negotiate with as many parties as possible. Would you be willing to negotiate with parties whose aim it is to have you removed, in the end?

President Assad: Of course, of course. I mean, their way, if they want me to go, they have the ballot box. We are ready, we don’t have a problem. They can convince the Syrian people that there’s a better alternative, this is not an appropriate choice for the future, and the president will leave. We don’t have a problem.

Question 38: That sounds really good, but in practice, realistically, in Syria, if you see the history of Syria, how much freedom do opposition parties have? How much freedom do politicians have to criticize you or to rise up against you?

President Assad: Let me be objective; we’re not Europe yet, and this is a cultural issue, it’s not only political. But we are on the way for more democracy in Syria. We are moving slowly but surely. It’s not something related to the president, because Syria is not my company; it’s a country, it has people. I mean, the process of democracy is a social process, and political at the same time, so we’re moving forward.

Question 39: But, one could say that four years ago, there was a step in that process of people rising up, and there was a brutal crackdown.

President Assad: How many? How many rose up? Do you have a number? The majority of the number, in one day, in Syria, at the beginning of the crisis, was 130,000, let’s make them double, 300, double them again, 600,000. It’s nothing out of 24 million Syrians.

Question 40: So you’re saying nobody really has risen up against you during those day?

President Assad: No, no, you have of course, but it was a mixture between people who really wanted to demonstrate against the political system that they don’t believe in, you have people who have been paid by Qatar in order to demonstrate for the propaganda, and you have the terrorists who have been infiltrating those demonstrations in order to kill the policemen in order to retaliate. That’s what happened in the first week of the crisis.

Question 41: So that’s only what happened? The police retaliated on killings that were done from within the group that was protesting?

President Assad: The first week, we had many policemen being killed by the demonstrators. Who are they? Peaceful demonstrators, of course you had machineguns and you had everything from the very beginning. So, that’s what happened. Anyway, the president, if he wants to leave, he will leave through the constitution and ballot box, and if he wants to come, he will come through the constitution and the ballot box, and both will reflect the public opinion.

Question 42: Has there been credible opposition in the last years, credible people who challenge you?

President Assad: We have, yeah. We have opposition. You can meet them, they are in Syria, they live in Syria, they have grassroots, Syrian grassroots, big, small opposition, new, old. I mean, this is not the issue, but we have them, they are allowed.

Question 43: Because we in the West would think, well, what we have seen in the media, all kinds of media, brutal crackdown, and now a war where there’s stories of barrel bombs, of massive incarceration, of extreme government violence. One would think twice before they would oppose or criticize you.

President Assad: The question is what means would you resort to when you have people killing police and destroying and burning for the first days? It didn’t happen six months later, like the propaganda in the West tried to promote, that the peaceful demonstrations turned into armed actions just because of the crackdown. That’s not true. Again, they killed the policemen in the first week.

Question 44: Looking back, what would you have done differently in 2011, what would you have done differently now?

President Assad: The two things we have based our politics on are two pillars, are dialogue and fighting terrorism. Today we are going to keep fighting terrorism and we are going to continue the dialogue with every involved party in Syria.

Question 45: Even if there will be an uprising like there was in 2011, you would react the same?

President Assad: If the same happens, people killing police, we have to respond. That’s our job as a government.

Question 46: Concluding, if you look back on four years, a large part of the country is under the control of different rebel groups, of ISIS, innocent people are dying on both sides of the front, people are suffering, and you are the president. You are responsible for protecting your people. Do you ask yourself “have I done enough to protect my people?”

President Assad: I cannot judge myself because I am not going to be objective talking about myself, I mean, the Syrian people would say the president did enough or not. At the very beginning, you mentioned the crackdown; many people said the president didn’t do enough to crack down on those terrorists. This is versus what you mentioned, and that has been published in the West. So, if you want to be objective, all of us as Syrians, to judge this situation, it should be at the end of the crisis, because the end result will tell you about the beginning. Now we are still in the middle, it is not enough to talk about this.

Question 47: Okay, but can you look at yourself in the mirror thinking “I am doing enough?”

President Assad: Yes, of course, and that changes every day. Sometimes you judge the same action in two different or three or four different ways every day, because we live with a very quickly changing situation, your mood, and thinking; you’re influenced by all these things on daily basis. So, you may change, but no one of them will be concrete and absolute unless you overcome this crisis. This is where you can think more objectively and realistically about your actions as a president.

Question 48: Last question: how long will this take before it’s resolved?

President Assad: If the responsible countries take actions against the flood and the flowing of terrorists and the logistic support, I can guarantee that it will take less than one year.

Question 49: Less than one year?

President Assad: Less than one year. But the problem is that they are still supporting them on daily basis more and more in order to make it more messy, and to put obstacles in front of any solution, because they want the solution, what they called a political solution, to be ended with the changing of this state, getting rid of this president or depose him, and so on. So, that’s why it will drag on.

Question 50: So, if it were without outside influence, you’d be done in one year.

President Assad: Definitely, for one reason because the terrorists in Syria, they don’t have the social incubator yet. That’s why we do not worry about them.

Journalist: Mr. President, thank you very much.

President Assad: Thank you for coming to Damascus.

Unbelievable, Starving children forced to give UN officials sex to get food

‘Gross institutional failure’ by UN on child sex abuse case :: WRAL.com

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The United Nations’ “gross institutional failure” to act on allegations that French and other peacekeepers sexually abused children in the Central African Republic led to even more assaults, according to a new report released Thursday.

One young boy who initially reported an attack on his friends more than a year ago now says he has been raped, too.

The independent panel found that the accounts by children as young as 9 of trading oral sex and other acts in exchange for food in the middle of a war zone in early 2014 were “passed from desk to desk, inbox to inbox, across multiple U.N. offices, with no one willing to take responsibility.”

Among those said to have looked the other way were the U.N. children’s agency, UNICEF, as well as human rights staffers.

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, in a statement, expressed “profound regret that these children were betrayed by the very people sent to protect them” and said he accepted the panel’s broad findings.

The panel, led by Canadian judge Marie Deschamps, found that U.N. staffers failed or hesitated to pass the children’s allegations to more senior officials, sometimes because of political concerns with France involved; showed “unconscionable delays” in protecting and supporting the children; failed to further investigate the allegations; failed to properly vet peacekeepers for past abuses; and, overall, appeared more concerned with whether one U.N. staffer had improperly alerted French authorities.

“The welfare of the victims and the accountability of the perpetrators appeared to be an afterthought, if considered at all,” the report says.

As of now, more than a year and a half after U.N. staffers first heard the children’s allegations of sexual abuse, no one has been arrested. Four French soldiers were questioned last week and released without charge, according to the Paris prosecutor’s office. They have not been publicly identified.

The new report lays bare one of the most persistent and embarrassing problems for the U.N. and its member countries as tens of thousands of peacekeepers serve in some of the world’s most volatile areas: Some vulnerable people are raped by their protectors, and often no one is punished. Many victims are children.

The children in Central African Republic’s capital, Bangui, reported the abuses in the middle of deadly chaos. The country had been ripped apart by violence between Christians and Muslims, and thousands of frightened people had sought shelter in squalid camps at the airport. French and other peacekeepers were trying to establish security.

The children told U.N. staffers that they had been hungry and did what the peacekeepers asked in return for food.

Almost a year passed before such allegations by a half-dozen children were made public in media reports this past April and May, leading Ban to order the independent investigation. Only then, the new report says, did the U.N. follow up with the children it had interviewed months ago and ensure their care.

At that point, a new round of interviews found that “some children alleged further cases of sexual abuse by peacekeepers,” the report says. And additional children reported abuse. It is not clear how many alleged victims now exist.

One child, who a year earlier at age 11 had told U.N. staffers about watching peacekeepers rape his friends, “now reported that he himself had been orally and anally raped.”

The panel found it “appalling” that the children didn’t receive immediate medical care. While UNICEF had referred the children to a local NGO partner for medical support, the panel found that in reality a social worker “devoted a total of two hours … to listening to the children and filling out forms required by UNICEF.”

The report also calls UNICEF’s failure to seek out other potential victims a “serious breach” of the agency’s duty to protect children.

Meanwhile, the children’s allegations took months to reach top U.N. officials. The report says the head of the U.N. peacekeeping mission in Central African Republic, Babacar Gaye, was told several times about the allegations, beginning June 1, 2014, and did not act.

In August of this year, in an unprecedented move, the U.N. secretary-general told Gaye to resign.

The report says France “took strong and immediate action” to investigate after receiving a U.N. document with the allegations in July 2014, but it called that a “stark contrast to the apparent failure of French authorities to react” in May 2014, when the U.N. human rights staffer who had interviewed the children says she spoke with French military officials.

Once the French government was informed, the report says, U.N. officials didn’t follow up on the allegations because they assumed the French were handling it.

But French authorities have said they were delayed for several months by U.N. bureaucracy. Information from the U.N. started flowing after the first media reports on the allegations emerged. And one year after French authorities first arrived in Central African Republic to investigate, the report says, the U.N. allowed the human rights staffer who had interviewed the children to participate in the French investigation as a witness.

The long delay, the report says, has hurt the chances for accountability in a case involving “the most vulnerable segment of society: unaccompanied, internally displaced and hungry, young children.”

U.N. officials have pointed out that the French peacekeepers were not part of the U.N. peacekeeping force that later arrived in Central African Republic, but the panel said the U.N.’s responsibility to protect human rights requires immediate action on such allegations, no matter what.

“Indeed, for victims of sexual violence, it is immaterial whether the perpetrator was wearing a blue helmet or not,” the report says.

U.N. officials also have accused the human rights official who first handed French authorities the report describing the allegations, Anders Kompass, of breaching policy by not redacting the children’s names. The report dismissed that argument and found that the former head of the U.N. internal oversight office abused her authority in improperly opening an investigation into Kompass in response to the “single-minded determination” of the U.N. human rights chief, Zeid Raad al-Hussein.

If the concerns about redacting the names and protecting the children from possible reprisals were real, the panel said, the U.N. would have acted to offer protection. “Instead, no one took any steps whatsoever to locate the children.”

UN’s Ban Ki-moon advises Palestinians to stop resistance, as if that would stop israel’s aggression & new wave of genocide

 UN Chief in Mideast: Put Down Your ‘Weapons of Despair’

The United Nations’ Secretary General jetted to the Middle East on a last-minute trip Tuesday in an attempt to defuse a deadly spiral of violence gripping the region.

Ban Ki-moon said his visit “reflects the sense of global alarm” over a dangerous escalation in violence between Israelis and Palestinians, telling a news conference he was there to support all efforts to “prevent the situation from spinning out of control.”

“No society should have to live in fear. No society can afford to see its youth suffer in hopelessness,” he said alongside Israel’s President Reuben Rivlin according to a statement released by the U.N. “If we do not act fast, the dynamics on the ground may only get worse, with serious repercussions in and beyond Israel and Palestine.”

Ban — who will meet later with Israeli and Palestinian leaders — said he would urge both sides to take “concerted” efforts to prevent further incidents.”

“Violence only begets violence,” he said. “We must not allow extremists on either side, or those who think violence is the answer, to further fuel the conflict….This conflict has gone on for far too long. We must, for the future of our children, turn back from this dangerous abyss.”

At least eight Israelis have been killed by Palestinians in near-daily stabbing and shooting attacks over the past month. More than 40 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli fire in clashes over the same period of time.

Ban’s visit came amid two more attacks on Israelis and fresh clashes in the West Bank. Israel’s military said a Palestinian stabbed an Israeli soldier during a violent riot near Hebron early Tuesday, adding that the soldier was lightly wounded and the assailant was shot on site.

 

 

Time the @UN did something to help the children of Gaza, with or without USA veto

Children of Gaza Call Upon International Community to Stop Israeli Crimes

A group of Gaza children organized a stand on Tuesday, in front of the mourning tent erected for the murdered child, Rahaf Hassan, age 2, who was killed along with her pregnant mother two days ago, after an Israeli airstrike directly bombed their home at Al-Zaitoon neighborhood in Gaza.

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The children delivered a speech in three languages: Arabic, English and French, calling on the international community to take a serious action against the Israeli crimes, especially targeting children in their homes.

The children have also called on the international community to instantly intervene to stop the Israeli aggression against Palestinian people in the West Bank, Gaza and pre-1948 occupied territories, assuring on their rights of live, play and education.

In this stand, which was organized by the Ministry of information in Gaza, according to Al Ray, the children called to open an urgent international investigation regarding the murder of Rahaf and her mother, and to bring the Israeli occupation to justice for the crimes committed against this family and others.

In the same context, the children pointed out the necessity of documenting crimes committed by the Israeli occupation in order to expose them to the world, especially the brutal acts against Palestinian children.

Search IMEMC: “DCI-Palestine” for related info.

The children noted that the murder of Rahaf Hassan was not the first or last crime; and it should put an end to the continued Israeli onslaughts against the children in Palestine, appealing the human rights organizations to bring cases in front of the International Criminal Court to judge the Israeli occupation.

UN allows Saudi dictatorship to investigate their own war crimes in Yemen

UN to Let Saudis Probe Themselves on Yemen War Crimes

Saudi Objections Kill Resolution Calling for International Probe

On Sunday, Saudi helicopters attacked a north Yemeni village, killing 30 civilians. The next day they attacked a wedding party in the southwest, killing another 131 civilians. Two such high-profile incidents amid the UN General Assembly meeting seemed to ensure that UN Human Rights Council calls for an inquiry into civilian deaths in Yemen would get through. Incredibly, they didn’t.

Instead, Saudi Arabia started complaining about the idea, and the UN let the matter drop, with the US and several other Western nations that initially signaled support for a resolution on an inquiry, proposed by the Netherlands, jumping ship and backing a competing Saudi text.

The Saudi text calls for an investigation, but empowers the Saudi-led coalition to conduct that investigation, only calling on the UN to offer support to them with “technical assistance,” and then only to the extent they request it.

Essentially this means the Saudis, and their allies in the Yemeni “government-in-exile,” will be investigating themselves on the question of war crimes, meaning that all those official claims that huge, well-documented incidents “didn’t happen” will become the official international narrative.

There’s more reason to boot the USA off the UNSC than remove Russia

Understanding the UN Security Council Veto Power. America Threatens Russia

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Article 27 of the UN Charter states:

1. Each member of the SecurityCouncil shall have one vote.2. Decisions of the Security Council on procedural matters shall be made by an affirmative vote of nine members.

3. Decisions of the Security Council on all other matters shall be made by an affirmative vote of nine members including the concurring votes of the permanent members; provided that, in decisions under Chapter VI, and under paragraph 3 of Article 52, a party to a dispute shall abstain from voting.

Five countries were granted special status: America, Britain, China, France and the former Soviet Union – now the Russian Federation. They’re permanent Security Council members with special voting power known as the “right to veto” SC measures.

During the post-Soviet era, Washington used its veto power scores of times, Russia only eight “no” votes. Ahead of the UN’s 70th anniversary next month, US-installed Ukrainian fascists want Moscow stripped of its right to dissent during this month’s General Assembly session. It’ll take more than a GA vote to alter the UN Charter. It requires a two-thirds majority of member states – including all P5 countries with veto power. It’s unlikely any will choose to limit their own authority.

Washington nonsensically claims Russian vetoes threaten the Security Council’s legitimacy. It  challenges its hegemonic agenda, blocking efforts to authorize war on Syria among  other important actions.

US UN envoy Samantha Power is one of numerous neocons infesting the Obama administration, an advocate of endless wars dressed up as humanitarian intervention.

She criticized Russian vetoes, saying they force America to “forum-shop” to further its agenda. “If a particular body reveals itself to be dysfunctional, then people are going to go elsewhere,” she claimed.

And if that happened for more than Syria and Ukraine and you started to see across the board paralysis…it would certainly jeopardize the security council’s status and credibility and its function as a go-to international security arbiter. It would definitely jeopardize that over time.

Russia’s veto power is an important tool able to prevent Washington from getting legitimacy for its imperial wars. “The Security Council will lose its relevance” without it, Moscow’s UN envoy Vitaly Churkin explained.

It would “simply…rubber-stamp decisions…made in Washington, Paris, London, (and) Brussels…(It would prevent SC members from) do(ing) the important work of bringing about consensus decisions.”

Putin is expected to meet with Obama when both leaders address the General Assembly later this month. Churkin expects no major breakthroughs. If agreement is reached on anything, it’ll be an achievement, he explained.

He dismissed the hype about alleged Russian military buildup in Syria as baseless Western propaganda. Russia fully observes international law. “There’s no secret about” its legitimate activities.

Putin’s initiative for world unity to confront Islamic State terrorists is the most effective way to defeat it, Churkin explained – impossible as long as Washington wants war.

US administrations under Republicans and Democrats are the greatest threat to world peace. It’ll take more than Security Council actions to reign in their madness.

Stephen Lendman

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