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Alternative bodies for alternative facts

Jun 18,2017 - Last updated at Jun 18,2017

The US is threatening to create an alternative mechanism to the UN Human Rights Council if this 47-nation body does not stop spending “too much” time examining Israeli violations of human rights and does not reform.

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson told the US House of Representatives in Washington, DC, a few days ago that the US will dramatically change course on the UN human rights activities: “We are either going to reform this thing and make it reflect what it should be reflecting or we will withdraw our support for it.”

Right. Either “reflect” America’s undying, unconditional, support for everything Israel does, including arbitrary imprisonment of Palestinians, land theft and apartheid, with not a thought about the rights of the people under decades of occupation, or else.

Speaking in front of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Tillerson said that if the US pulls out of the UNHCR, it will “find other means that we can approach human rights issues on a multilateral basis with partners who see it the same way we do”.

This is no veiled threat to bypass the main UN human rights machinery, but a clearly stated one, uttered, no doubt, on good authority and on behalf of the president.

US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley said just about the same last week, after finding out that the UNHCR might ask the International Court of Justice in The Hague to issue an advisory opinion on Israeli abuses of Palestinians’ rights, echoing the increasingly hostile US sentiment vis-à-vis the UNHCR.

While the UN human right organisations may not be perfect, they remain the only international mechanism to address human rights issues with considerable objectivity, authority and high credentials.

Instead of undermining the UN human rights activities simply because considerable time is devoted to Israeli violations of Palestinians’ human rights, the US should turn its attention, and frustration, to Israel and convince it to stop its human rights abuses and illegal activities in the occupied territories, including East Jerusalem, especially its settlement activities on land stolen from the Palestinians.

 

That would indeed serve the human rights cause in the Middle East and stop “criticism” of Israel.

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Comments

OF COURSE, IF THERE IS AN ALTERNATIVE TRUTH, THERE HAS TO BE AN ALTERNATIVE TO HUMAN RIGHTS. WHEN THE WORLD TARGETS COUNTRIES THAT SPONSOR TERROR ONLY ABOUT 5% OF THE TIME AND SUPPORTS WAR AGAINST THOSE THAT HAS DONE SO WITH MORE ARMS AND GUNS MORE THAN 96% OF THE TIME, WHY CRY ABOUT ALTERNATIVE TO FACTS. THERE ARE NO MORE FACTS, HUMANITY BECAUSE ITS ALL ABOUT POWER AT THE EXPENSE OF THE WEAK, POOR AND THE FORGOTTEN PEOPLE. ITS A JOKE THESE DAYS TO TALK ABOUT HONESTY BECAUSE THERE ARE NON AND I WONDER WHAT OUR CHILDREN WILL GROW UP WITH.

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