The United Nations (UN) as an institution is not known to be a paragon of virtue, nor is it friendly toward Israel or sensitive to Jewish concerns. In fact, antisemitism resides deep within its agencies. As a whole it is an organization whose majority members are not democracies, and many are oppressive regimes. The members of the Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC) are a case in point of oppressive regimes whose voice at the UN General Assembly (UNGA) dominates. Israel has served for decades as the “whipping boy” or scapegoat of the UNGA and various UN agencies. In fact, the General Assembly passed Resolution 3379 on November 10, 1975 with the combined Soviet, Islamic and Third World blocs equating “Zionism (the Jewish national liberation movement) with racism.” The resolution was repealed on December 16, 1991.
The Arab/Muslim bloc used its power to establish and authorize funding for several UN committees and divisions of the Secretariat which primarily carry out the anti-Israel agenda. Among these are: The Division for Palestinian Rights of the Secretariat, “The Committee to Investigate Israeli Practices in the Territories,” and “The Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People.” Today, these committees continue to be engaged in promoting programs and initiatives that are harshly critical of Israel.
On December 23, 2016, the Security Council passed Resolution 2334, which condemned Israeli settlement building, and labeled settlements as a “major obstacle” to peace. The resolution passed 14-0, with the U.S. abstaining. It was the first Security Council resolution to deal specifically with settlements in over 35 years. Israel rejected the resolution, and Israel’s Ambassador to the UN, Danny Danon said it was a reward for the Palestinians that encouraged them “to continue down a dangerous path they have chosen” of avoiding direct negotiations with Israel.” In December, 2017, the U.S. vetoed a UN Security Council resolution calling on President Trump to reverse the US decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. In June, 2018, the U.S. vetoed a resolution condemning Israel for using excessive force toward Palestinian protesters along the Gaza border. There was no mention of Hamas in the resolution. A second resolution that did reference Hamas’s role failed to pass.
Since its entry into the UN in 1949, Israel was barred by the Arab/Muslim bloc of states and their Third World allies from joining its natural region as all other UN member states do. In Israel’s case, it is the Asian Regional Group. Arab member states of the UN have used the UNGA as a forum to isolate and condemn Israel, with support from Non-Aligned Movement members. In May, 2000, Israel was finally granted admission into a group – the Western and Others Group (WEOG). In 2013, Israel was invited to join WEOG in Geneva, the seat of several UN bodies and subsidiary organizations.
The UN Human Rights Council was re-created in 2006. Since then, more resolutions condemning Israel passed than the entire rest of the world combined, with 45 resolutions, which amounted to 45.9% of all country-specific resolutions. With most of the 47 member UNHRC being non-democratic repressive regimes, those passing resolutions against Israel include Iran, Cuba, China, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, to name but a few.
The permanent agenda of the HRC specifically targets Israel. Its Agenda Item #7, titled, “Human rights situation in Palestine and other occupied Arab territories, includes: Human rights violations and implications of the Israeli occupation of Palestine and other occupied Arab territories and the Right to self-determination of the Palestinian people.” Israel is the only country to appear on the HRC’s permanent agenda, while other countries such as Iran and Sudan, notorious for their human rights abuses, are included as part of the general debate. U.S. ambassador Nikki Haley, declaring the U.S. withdrawal from the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC), told the Heritage Foundation (July 18, 2018) that the UNHRC controversial Agenda #7 is “designed to undermine Israel’s existence.” She added, “No other country, not Iran, not Syria, not North Korea, has an agenda item devoted to it.”
The UN Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) is another biased UN agency with its bias toward Israel. In July 2017, UNESCO World Heritage Committee voted to designate the old city of Hebron, including the Tomb of the Patriarchs, as a “World Heritage in Danger,” and listed the site as part of the State of Palestine. The U.S., along with Israel, withdrew from UNESCO membership.
Still, thanks to the likes of Nikki Haley, things have begun to improve a bit for Israel at the UN. Israel’s ambassador to the UN, Danny Danon, was elected in June 2017, to serve as the Deputy President of the United Nations General Assembly. He will begin his role with the 72nd General Assembly. Former Israeli ambassador to the UN, Ron Prosor, also served in the role in 2012.
In 2016, Danon was elected as chairman of the Legal Committee of the UN. The UN’s Legal Committee deals with all of the organization’s activities regarding international law, including the status of the additional protocols of the Geneva Convention and coordinating its fight against terrorism. One of Danon’s first tasks in his new position will be to further the Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism. It was the first time that Israel secured a victory at the UN. Responding to his election, Danon said, “I am proud to be the first Israeli elected to this position.” He added, “Israel is a world leader in international law and in fighting terrorism. We are pleased to have the opportunity to share our knowledge with the countries of the world.”
Together with the U.S., Israel brought up a resolution to condemn the Palestinian Islamist terrorist group Hamas, as a “global problem.” 87 states endorsed the resolution. Jewish heritage and culture are now part of the UN institutions, according to Danon. Yom Kippur has been recognized for the first time ever as a formal observable holiday, and Kosher food has been added to the UN cafeteria. Other major Jewish holidays are likewise marked by official celebrations.
Israel Hayom reported (September 24, 2019) that “Israeli, Jewish and pro-Israel groups all applauded the publication of an “unprecedented” UN report on anti-Semitism, which, among other issues, links anti-Semitism to criticism of Israel and the BDS movement.” According to Anne Herzberg, Legal advisor and UN Liaison at NGO Monitor, “This report marks one of the first times the UN has addressed the issue of anti-Semitism in any detail.” She added, “The Special Rapporteur condemned the use of anti-Semitic tropes and denial of Israel’s right to exist by BDS activists.”
Danny Danon commented that “we welcome the release of this unprecedented report on the subject of anti-Semitism. The report reflects the organizational change toward Israel. The assertion that the BDS movement encourages anti-Semitism is an important UN statement. As I have said many times, anti-Semitism has no place in our society, and must be denounced everywhere and from every platform.”
Israel’s ambassador to the UN, Danny Danon, is proud of Israel’s achievements. He observed that the UN is no longer the organization of the Goldstone Report with charges of Israeli “war crimes.” In 2019, the UN is no longer the home field of Israel-bashers. These days, Danon believes, many states support Israel’s initiatives in international forums.
Perhaps Danon is right, albeit, it is hard to believe that a leopard can change is spots. Unfortunately, it is not only the leopards who reside in the UN, there are snakes too.
By ALAN ROSENBAUM
“We are a government agency with a start-up soul,” says Hagai Dror, managing director of HealthCare Israel, one of the three winners of the 2019 InnoDip Award for innovative diplomacy. The award, established by the Abba Eban Institute for International Diplomacy at the IDC Herzliya, will be presented at the Jerusalem Post Diplomatic Conference on Thursday, November 21 in Jerusalem.
Healthcare Israel was created by Israel’s Ministry of Health in 2016 to deliver life-saving and cost-saving healthcare innovation, technology and expertise to the world, and promotes cooperation and Israeli health system exports through collaborations between government, the health system and the healthcare industry. It has leveraged Israel’s existing diplomatic ecosystem to reach out and create new kinds of international cooperation projects and business deals specifically in the healthcare space.
By YAAKOV KATZ
U.S. Ambassador Friedman to ‘Post’: New policy advances the cause of Israeli-Palestinian peace • PM: Policy rights a historical wrong
In a historic reversal of US policy, the Trump administration announced on Monday that it does not view Israeli settlements in the West Bank as illegal. The policy change was announced by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in Washington.
“After carefully studying all sides of the legal debate, this administration agrees with president Reagan,” Pompeo said in reference to Ronald Reagan’s position that settlements were not inherently illegal. “The establishment of Israeli civilian settlements in the West Bank is not per se inconsistent with international law.”
Leftist students verbally abused and ransacked tables belong to conservative students
Binghamton University’s downtown campus in New York.
A New York State assemblyman has slammed Binghamton University for the way it has handled a group of leftist students who verbally abused and ransacked tables belonging to the campus College Republicans group.
The conservative students were handing out flyers for an upcoming talk by well-known economist Dr. Arthur Laffer when the incident occurred on Thursday.
A view of the Yehudit Bridge and the Ayalon highway in Tel Aviv, Feb. 17, 2019. Photo
CTech – Tel Aviv will officially launch its free weekend transportation service this Friday, the city announced Tuesday. In collaboration with neighboring towns Givatayim, Ramat Hasharon, and Kiryat Ono, Tel Aviv will operate six routes covering over 300 kilometers. Minivans will pick up and drop off passengers at over 500 stops across the metropolitan area at a frequency of once every 30 minutes between 6 pm on Friday and 2 am on Saturday, and between 9 am and 5 pm on Saturday.
Tel Aviv has long awaited a solution for transportation during Shabbat and other Jewish holidays. The principle of the “status quo”—a guideline which dictates maintaining the common practice when it comes to the fundamentals of Jewish Orthodoxy, especially Shabbat observance—effectively prevents the state from offering public transportation services on Shabbat, but since Tel Aviv’s service is free, it does not currently fall under the legal definition of public transportation.
A police car in the German capital of
An elderly man has been viciously beaten up in broad daylight on a Berlin street by a youth who showered him with antisemitic abuse.
According to the BZ online news outlet, the 76-year-old pensioner was walking along the Berliner Strasse in the Pankow district of the German capital at 9 a.m. on Monday when his passage was blocked by a 16-year-old youth and four of his friends.
What good is the flourishing of a nation if it is constantly at political, partisan war?
‘WITHOUT PEACE, life becomes unlivable. We’re all unnaturally nervous because there is hardly any downtime.’
When I first arrived to serve as rabbi at Oxford in late 1988, I had no office help. Therefore, in addition to my rabbinical and organizational responsibilities, I had to do all the office work myself. I wrote the checks, copied the fliers, typed the letters and licked the envelopes. In terms of communications, in those days I had to deal only with the telephone and snail mail.
Israel’s control over Judea and Samaria is not “occupation,” at least not according to international law.
The American tourist was staring at me with “deer in the headlights” eyes. She did not comprehend what I had just said to her. I had said that Palestinians are not Israelis.
A minute earlier she had revealed to us – a group of about 15 of her peers, plus me, all gathered in my Efrat living room – the root cause of Palestinian terrorism. It was due, she announced, to Israel “treating Palestinians like second-class citizens and denying them the right to come to Jerusalem.” By this she was inferring that Palestinians are citizens of the State of Israel who are discriminated against and denied numerous right
Mass emigration of Israel’s most tech-savvy individuals starves start-ups of talented hires and puts a ceiling on their growth.
A ROBOT tries to make a heart. Who is behind those online profiles?
The Start-Up Nation is suffering from a brain drain that threatens its growth.
For every Israeli citizen with a university degree who returned from abroad in 2017, a corresponding 4.5 Israelis with degrees left the country that same year, a newly released report by the Shoresh Institution for Socioeconomic Research found. The trend has been under way for years and shows no signs of slowing down.
Supporters of Lebanon’s Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah ride in a vehicle decorated with Hezbollah and Lebanese flags and a picture of him, as part of a convoy in the southern village of Kfar Kila, Lebanon October 25, 2019
Could uprisings in Iraq and Lebanon, coupled with US sanctions, permanently impair Iran’s influence in the region?
In the past few weeks, frustrated and fed-up demonstrators have taken to the streets of Lebanon and Iraq to voice grievances against their governments. The perception of Iranian infiltration and influence certainly continues to impact this political shake-up in both regions.
Hamas is aware of the deep crisis but still sticks to its guns, literally, by insisting on holding and upgrading its arsenal instead of helping its own people
The recent clash in the Gaza Strip was not like earlier ones there because it was only between Israel and Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ), and Hamas was not really involved. This could be a model for the future in which Israel might strike the PIJ while Hamas again stays out of the fight.