United Nations: The Farce Continues…writes Michael Kuttner

October 25, 2013 by Michael Kuttner
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Just when you thought that this world body couldn’t sink any lower they amaze us all and prove everyone wrong.

Michael Kuttner

Michael Kuttner

Of course those, whose rose tinted spectacles preclude them from seeing awkward reality, will continue to sponsor the invisible virtues of an organisation whose founders must be spinning in their graves. Those of us however with both feet on the ground and our heads not in the clouds, can only wonder at the farce unfolding in front of our eyes on a weekly basis.

Two of the latest examples (and believe me there are many more) should serve to illustrate the murky mess into which the UN has descended. Bear in mind as you read on, that the taxpayers of member nations (that is you and I) are being milked in order to fund and perpetuate the goings on taking place in New York.

First of all is the election of Iran to the UN committee on disarmament. If ever any proof was needed of the imbecility of the UN here it is. A country which has been engaged in years of clandestine activity to acquire nuclear weapons and the means to deliver them, a prime sponsor of terror and terrorist groups, a serial human rights abuser and a country which threatens to wipe another UN member off the map, would normally not only be disqualified to serve on such a committee but would in actual fact be expelled for flouting every principle of normal international conduct.

If thumbing your nose at the rest of the world and threatening to wipe out another UN member can get you elected to the UN committee on disarmament then anything goes in this corrupted outfit. No wonder many Israelis hold the UN in total contempt.

The second brilliant move was the election of Saudi Arabia to the Security Council. At first glance there would seem to be nothing wrong with this as being a member of the UN theoretically any country is eligible to assume this position. Any country that is except Israel, which although a member in good standing has a snowball’s chance in hell of ever being chosen to sit on the Council. We all know why of course so let’s concentrate instead on Saudi Arabia.

Here are some reasons why the election of this feudal kingdom is another farce in the cap of an increasingly discredited organisation.

Saudi Arabia is in a declared state of war with Israel which it does not recognise as a legitimate country. One has therefore to ask how a State which peddles such policies against another fellow member of the UN can be deemed worthy of election to its highest forum.

Further, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia prohibits the open worship of any other religion than Islam. Churches and Synagogues are banned and any visitor carrying non Islamic prayer books or items will have them confiscated or be denied entry.

Its treatment of women is well known and the scarcely hidden mistreatment of foreign workers is a scandal. Chopping off of hands and flogging is a fact of life.

Human rights are a foreign concept and those campaigning for genuine democracy and civil rights are arrested, tortured and persecuted. Amnesty International has just published a damming report which amongst other things states:

…”Saudi citizens who campaigned for improved human rights were subjected to “harsh repressive measures such as arbitrary arrests, detentions without charge or trial, unfair trials and travel bans,” said the report, which added that “torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading punishment are practiced with impunity during arrests and in detention centres and prisons.”

Far from improving its human rights records, the report claims that since 2011, the Saudi regime has mounted a “new wave of repression against civil society.”

The report claimed that women campaigning for equal rights had particularly suffered from such government repression, and that “Saudi Arabian women are systematically discriminated against both in law and practice.”

Discrimination against women is actually enshrined in Saudi Arabian law, the most high-profile example of which is the law prohibiting women from driving. That law has seen heightened opposition in recent months, as well as a string of arrests of women’s rights campaigners for publicly flouting the ban.

The report also noted that the Gulf Kingdom has consistently ranked “as one of the top five executioners in the world, with executions taking place based on summary trials and ‘confessions’ extracted under torture.”

Migrant workers and the country’s Shia Muslim minority are also regularly subjected to particularly serious abuse, including a sometimes deadly tendency towards an “excessive use of force” by authorities…”

Does this sound like perfect qualifications for election to the Security Council?

The fact that a country with such a record can be elected and indeed remain a member of the UN speaks volumes about the organisation and illustrates the depths to which it has sunk.

Within the last few days Saudi Arabia has decided to decline the Security Council seat. Whether it is because of the adverse publicity that has been generated or for the specious reasons give by it (upset over Syria and “Palestinian” problem) the fact remains that the vast majority of UN members were perfectly happy to reward this paragon of hypocrisy with election to a body which sits in judgment on democracies and censures Israel every Monday and Thursday.

Arab countries are begging Saudi Arabia to reconsider its decision not to take its seat on the Security Council. One can only cynically smile in reaction to a brazen piece of double standards emanating from this quarter and wonder how many more farces will issue forth from UN headquarters in New York.

The time is long overdue when the Secretary General should place a BAN on such nonsense.


Breaking news: It has just been reported that John Kerry has explained to Saudi Arabia that being on the Security Council is an important matter. Presumably he is trying to convince them to change their minds. If the world’s leading democratic power is in fact desperately engaged in such incredible diplomacy then we can truly say that there is no hope for the United Nations and that hypocrisy has reached an exalted status.

Michael Kuttner is a Jewish New Zealander who for many years was actively involved with various communal organisations connected to Judaism and Israel. He now lives in Israel and works for The Israel Resource News Agency in Jerusalem. 


One Response to “United Nations: The Farce Continues…writes Michael Kuttner”
  1. David says:

    The Arabs and their friends are upset with the lack of efficacy of the UN that they have been blackmailing all this time with their 56-member Organization of Islamic Cooperation bloc!

    Pakistan agrees with the Saudi government that there should be progress on all issues including Syria, Palestine and other long-standing issues like Kashmir. If that is their serious concern why are they encouraging Saudi Arabia to refuse to be part of the Security Council, where they could lobby directly for these very issues to be properly addressed?

    Don’t you love these weasel words:
    “The Government of Pakistan has always supported all efforts to ensure peaceful resolution of disputes and is confident that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia will continue to play its role in maintenance of international peace and security,” it said. “The council should be equitable, fair and democratic in nature,” the statement said.

    This last statement is exactly what we Jews have been complaining about for decades.

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