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Friday, May 08, 2009

Your tax dollars at work and more: The UN 'Human Rights Council'

This coming Tuesday, new members of the United Nations 'Human Rights Council' will be elected. As you may recall, one of the sops that the Obama administration threw at the Council when it withdrew from the Durban II conference in Geneva was that it would stand for election to the Council. I've gone through all the reasons why that's a bad idea many times, and besides, Claudia Rosett does it again in this article.

Instead, I want to focus on something else Rosett discusses, of which I was not aware, and of which I am sure many of you were not aware either: the price - yes, the price - that the United States is paying to become a member of the Council:
The reality is a lot less promising, starting with the mix of American money and self-flagellation that Obama has already sent to the table. In an April 22 letter to the president of the U.N. General Assembly, Miguel d'Escoto Brockman (himself an ardent supporter of Iran's rights-crushing mullah-ocracy), Obama's cabinet-rank ambassador to the U.N., Susan Rice, in declaring America's candidacy, threw in a grab-bag of goodies right up front.

According to Rice's letter, a big feature of the U.S. joining the Human Rights Council will be an open invitation for the U.N. to evaluate the record of the U.S. itself. Not that the U.N. stints on that to begin with--at the U.N. overall, there have been more actions in recent years condemning the U.S. than condemning say, Zimbabwe, China or Saudi Arabia. But in keeping with Obama's hallmark mode of apologizing to the world for the democracy that elected him president, Rice makes a number of explicit offers.

The U.S. welcomes universal reviews by the Human Rights Council of individual country records, she writes, and "looks forward to the review in 2010 of its own record." The U.S. believes that the international community is entitled to expressions of concern about the human rights situations in any country, she notes, "including our own."

This might sound all very equitable, and in U.N. procedural terms, no doubt it is. But it has almost nothing to do with human rights. In the U.N.'s despot-dominated chambers, "human rights" are not a function of such basic principles as right and wrong; instead, "human rights" are amorphous, negotiable, and can mean almost anything.

The phrase has come to include the U.N.'s eco-agenda and demands by despotic governments for whopping dollops of "development aid" from democracies like the U.S. The Human Rights Council recently twisted its own mandate far enough to produce a resolution on "defamation" that was designed to gag free speech on religion. Translated from U.N. jargon into plain English, it is a ban on a much-needed global debate about the nature and direction of Islam.

One might suspect that, as an intelligent woman, Susan Rice knows that the U.N., soaked in moral relativism and systemically hostile to free societies, has less than nothing to contribute to the U.S. in the way of upholding human rights. She is offering a concession, an invitation for America's enemies, working through the U.N., to come inspect and try to remold America's way of life.

To further sweeten America's candidacy, Rice's letter also listed some of the money the U.S. plans to fork over in connection to U.N. "human rights" activities. This includes $8 million for the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, $8.4 million for related voluntary funds and a reminder of another $192.4 million for human rights efforts administered through U.N. outfits such as UNICEF, the U.N. Population Fund, and so forth.
Isn't that gaffetastic? The UN 'Human Rights Council' - led by Libya, Iran and Cuba - is going to come investigate human rights in the United States. Holy moral equivalency Batman! What are they thinking?

I suppose there are two possibilities. One is the 'citizen of the world' theory: President Obama regards himself as a 'citizen of the world' and that requires him to accommodate every dictator on the planet (but of course, not democracies like Israel or India). The other possibility, which fits quite nicely with this theory, is that Obama actually believes that American membership on the Council is going to convince some of these dictatorships to clean up their acts. I would say that's so unlikely as not to be worth the effort.

I wonder whom Obama will send as his delegate to the Council. I nominate Perez Hilton. He knows how to be nasty and it would be a real slap in the face to the 'Council.' Which is why it won't happen....

By the way, read the whole thing.


At 1:32 AM, Blogger NormanF said...

Carl - the UN's favorite champion of human rights announced the Jews are the bacteria of mankind.

Was it Adolf Hitler?

Nope - it was Mahmoud Ahmedinejad ranting against Israel the other day in Damascus.

The human rights of some people are LESS equal than others.

That's the UN view of human rights.


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