JERUSALEM’S INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMACY IMPROVES, DESPITE ONGOING UN ANTI-ISRAEL BIAS

Trump Stands Firm Against Bias and Abuses at International Organizations: Prof. Eytan Gilboa, BESA, Oct. 11, 2018— Critics of President Donald Trump often accuse him of being erratic and inconsistent on foreign policy.

As the US Cuts Funding, UNRWA Employees Forced to Flee Gaza: Asaf Romirowsky and Alex Joffe, Washington Examiner, Oct. 11, 2018— The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine evacuated at least 10 international senior officials from the Gaza Strip last Monday.

UNRWA’s Message of Hate and Indoctrination: Deborah Singer Soffen and Joan Lurie Goldberg, Algemeiner, Sept. 26, 2018 — The education of Palestinian schoolchildren must change drastically if there is ever to be a lasting negotiated peace between the Israelis and Palestinians.

Is Israel’s International Isolation Diminishing?: Elliott Abrams, CFR, January 17, 2018— In December 2017, the UN General Assembly adopted a resolution rejecting and criticizing the U.S. decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

On Topic Links

‘Many of Us Owe Meir Dagan Their Lives’: Moshe Ya’alon, Arutz Sheva, Mar. 21, 2018

Nikki Haley: A Warrior for Truth and Justice: Danny Danon, JNS, Oct. 11, 2018

Israel’s Nationality Law, UN Resolution 181, and the Arab List: Prof. Hillel Frisch, BESA, Sept. 21, 2018

The Impact of Non-Orthodox Jews on America: Isi Leibler, Jerusalem Post, Oct. 10, 2018

 

                    TRUMP STANDS FIRM AGAINST BIAS

AND ABUSES AT INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS

Prof. Eytan Gilboa

BESA, Oct. 11, 2018

Critics of President Donald Trump often accuse him of being erratic and inconsistent on foreign policy. In one particular area, however, he has been clear and consistent: the UN, international organizations, and international law. As in other areas of foreign policy and national security, Trump has completely reversed the policies of his predecessor Barack Obama. From the beginning of his tenure in the White House, Trump has shown little respect for the Security Council, the UN General Assembly, and several other UN and international agencies. He views them as highly politicized, corrupt, ineffective, and anti-American.

Trump appointed Nikki Haley, a highly popular and very sharp politician, to the position of US Ambassador to the UN. Haley, of Indian-Sikh origin, was the first female governor of South Carolina and was considered for vice president. She regularly and defiantly holds up a mirror to the delegates at the UN to expose the body’s hypocrisy, falseness, and double standards. (On October 9, Haley resigned her position, to be effective at the end of calendar 2018.) John Bolton, the former US ambassador to the UN who became Trump’s National Security Advisor in April 2018, is another key player in the new American approach to the UN and other international organizations.

In his speech to the 2018 UN General Assembly (his second to the body), Trump clarified a doctrine he often repeated during the 2016 presidential campaign and has continued to emphasize since becoming president: The US is a sovereign state and will determine its functions in world affairs solely on the basis of its national interests. “America is governed by Americans,” he said. “We reject the ideology of globalism and accept the doctrine of patriotism.”

Trump has consistently applied this doctrine to multiple international organizations and processes. When the US decided to leave the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC), US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo explained, “Too many commitments have gone unfulfilled. President Trump wants to move the ball forward. From day one he has called out institutions or countries who say one thing and do another, and that’s precisely the problem at the Human Rights Council.”

In June 2018, the US left the UNHRC. Ambassador Haley said that for almost a year, she had demanded reforms to the Council’s operations to no avail. “Regrettably,” she said, “it is now clear that our call for reform was not heeded. Human rights abusers continue to serve on, and be elected to, the Council.” She mentioned the election of the Democratic Republic of Congo as a new member, and the Council’s failure to conduct a single session on massive abuses committed by Venezuela and Iran, two Council members.

Haley added, “The world’s most inhumane regimes continue to escape scrutiny and the Council continues the politicizing and scapegoating of countries with positive human rights records in an attempt to distract from the abusers in their ranks. For too long the Human Rights Council has been a protector of human rights abusers and a cesspool of political bias.” The US decision to leave the UNHRC was also prompted by talks at the Council on condemning the Trump administration for immigration policies, particularly regarding the separation of illegal parents from their children.

The UNHRC was established in 2006 to replace the UN Commission on Human Rights, which ran from 1947 to 2006. The Commission was dismantled because of overt politicizing and the membership of many countries that have been among the greatest abusers of human rights on earth, such as Cuba, China, Russia, Libya, Sudan, Pakistan, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and Zimbabwe. The Council has done no better. The same abusers were elected to the new body and the Council’s performance has been as ludicrous as that of the Commission. Its handling of Israel has been especially biased and outrageous.

The UNHRC has one item, Agenda Item 7, dedicated solely to Israel and another for the entire rest of the world. More than 50% of all resolutions this body adopts every year are against Israel. Most are one-sided and based on false information. The Council has appointed two committees to investigate alleged “war crimes” by Israel in Gaza warfare – but only Israel’s alleged crimes, not those of Hamas, the extreme Islamic terror organization that controls Gaza. The Goldstone Report (April 2009) and the Davis Report (June 2015) were skewed, flawed, and baseless (and, indeed, Goldstone himself later disavowed his namesake report). The UNHRC commissioned them in order to question and limit Israel’s right to self-defense. No other country in any other international conflict has ever been subjected to this type of biased and false inquiry…[To Read the Full Article Click the Following Link—Ed.]

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                        AS THE US CUTS FUNDING, UNRWA EMPLOYEES FORCED TO FLEE GAZA

                                                Asaf Romirowsky and Alex Joffe                                                                                           Washington Examiner, Oct. 11, 2018

The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine evacuated at least 10 international senior officials from the Gaza Strip last Monday. The reason? These top staffers had received death threats following the announcement of budget cuts and planned layoffs by the agency. This is all because U.S. had decided not to renew its funding — emboldened, perhaps, by the Taylor Force Act’s prohibition on funding organizations that abet terrorism.

UNRWA confirmed later that it had “decided to temporarily withdraw part of its international staff from Gaza following a series of worrying security incidents affecting its personnel in the Strip.” These threats were so real that it prompted an emergency exit via the Erez Crossing, which was closed for the Sukkot holiday (the Feast of Tabernacles). It had to be specially opened just to permit the group of UNRWA employees to flee.

What sort of organization lives in dire fear of its own employees? From a human resource perspective, UNRWA is a case study of a client hijacking a service provider. The majority of the approximately 30,000 employees are Palestinians. The few hundred internationals employed by the agency are also overwhelmingly pro-Palestinian. It is rare that any employee has dared to break the code of silence regarding UNRWA’s alleged indispensability or its internal affairs. It is a demonstration of where the power lies that international employees have become the pawns that can be sacrificed.

To UNRWA’s Palestinian employees, the internationals are somehow representatives of the international system. The U.S., under this system, is simultaneously hated and expected to provide funding in perpetuity. We only know of a handful of individuals who have ever aired UNRWA’s dirty laundry. One such case was back in 2010, during a speech to an Arab-American group. Andrew Whitley, outgoing head of UNRWA’s New York office, stated the obvious: “We recognize, as I think most do, although it’s not a position that we publicly articulate, that the right of return is unlikely to be exercised to the territory of Israel to any significant or meaningful extent. … It’s not a politically palatable issue, it’s not one that UNRWA publicly advocates, but nevertheless it’s a known contour to the issue.”

UNRWA’s new leadership swiftly and “unequivocally” distanced itself from these comments, saying that they “in no way reflect the policies or positions of the agency and are the personal views of Mr. Whitley.” Whitley then came under such pressure from his former employer that he had to publicly repudiate his own comments as “inappropriate and wrong.”

This was not unlike what had occurred in 1952, when Lt. Gen. Sir Alexander Galloway, a noted British soldier-diplomat and UNRWA director in Jordan, made a famous statement to a group of visiting American church leaders: “It is perfectly clear that the Arab nations do not want to solve the Arab refugee problem. They want to keep it as an open sore, as an affront against the United Nations and as a weapon against Israel. Arab leaders don’t give a damn whether the refugees live or die.”

Shortly thereafter, Galloway was fired at the demand of the Jordanian government because he refused to dismiss international employees and hire locals. Galloway then published a blunt op-ed in the Daily Telegraph and Morning Post where he lambasted UNRWA and the international approach to the Palestinian refugee problem.

What is the solution? Of course the problem is difficult. Refugee settlement, except under dictatorship, is a long, expensive business. Somehow or other, the Arab Governments, the United Nations, UNRWA and some of the refugees have got to face facts: The refugees cannot in the foreseeable future return (or in the case of most of them, go) to Israel. Public acceptance of this is a matter of politics, beyond the function of UNRWA. Second, a determined effort should be made to get the “host” countries to take over relief from the Agency, thus freeing it to get on with the much more important task of resettlement.

UNRWA’s international employees, who were threatened by their local counterparts, were not going to speak publicly about its frequent hiring of terrorists and about Hamas’ use of UNRWA facilities. But they were apparently driven out precisely because they had failed in their primary task: to ensure the continued flow of funds. This is the crux of the problem. In 1949, before UNRWA was created, protesters challenged a group of UN officials visiting Gaza. As one observer described it, “A large sign had been printed in English, on which were the following, numbered as indicated: ‘1. Send us back home. 2. Compensate us. 3. Maintain us until we are refreshed.’ Just what they had in mind by ‘refreshed’ I leave to your imagination.”

UNRWA’s funding problems, and the flight of its international employees from Gaza, mask the real issue, a culture of entitlement that goes back almost 70 years, and which seeks to preserve Palestinians as internationally supported “refugees” until Israel magically disappears, rather than encourage their resettlement, self-reliance, and dignity. Until there is a cultural change, international employees will continue to be sacrificed, and the international community will be expected to pay up.                                                                                    Contents

   

                    UNRWA’S MESSAGE OF HATE AND INDOCTRINATION                                                   Deborah Singer Soffen and Joan Lurie Goldberg

                                                Algemeiner, Sept. 26, 2018

The education of Palestinian schoolchildren must change drastically if there is ever to be a lasting negotiated peace between the Israelis and Palestinians. Why? Because these schools have been inciting three generations of young Palestinians to hate and kill Jews, and the only means of conflict resolution that these students have been exposed to is violence.

For children all over the world, the new school year is filled with promise and excitement, affording them the opportunity for personal development so that they may eventually become productive citizens of their perspective communities. The same cannot be said for Palestinian children. The United Nations’ Palestinian refugee agency UNRWA and the Palestinian leadership have manipulated their education system to serve a different purpose. Rather than an education that strives to better the child, they exploit impressionable minds, indoctrinating these children into a culture of hate, thereby perpetuating the conflict rather than resolving it. Until their education system changes, the region is at least a generation away from a true, sustainable peace.

Palestinian schools, including various private schools belonging to Christian churches and Islamic charity foundations, all receive their textbooks from the PA Ministry of Education’s Curricula Center in Ramallah. According to Dr. Arnon Groiss, whose research on the subject spans 18 years, the most recent set of books published in 2016/2018 are even more radical than their predecessors. According to him, a curriculum of hatred permeates all subject matter, from elementary arithmetic to high school social studies and science. Martyrdom is glorified, the Jews’ historical connection to their biblical homeland is rejected, and contemporary maps of the region omit the existence of the UN member state of Israel. Jews are demonized and terrorist/jihad concepts are woven into songs, plays, and academia.

“The Right of Return” for more than five million Palestinians, clearly an attempt to destroy the State of Israel, is taught as a birthright. “Summer camps” for UNRWA students in Gaza are essentially Hamas paramilitary training programs. It is nothing short of hair-raising to see an adorable schoolgirl demonstrate the best way to stab a Jew or hear a young schoolboy say that he dreams of one day becoming a martyr.

UNRWA was set up in 1949 to provide social services, including education, to the Palestinian refugee population that resulted following the 1948 Arab-Israeli war, which occurred when the newly declared State of Israel was attacked by its Arab neighbors. The agency’s schools now employ 30,000 teachers, many of whom are products of these same incitement-filled schools. Therefore, it should be no surprise that peace in the region has been so elusive. Nor should it be a surprise that there have been so many teenage Palestinians attending these schools who have been willing to sacrifice their lives in order to murder Jews. This phenomenon of a society indoctrinating children is eerily similar to that of the Hitler Youth. The Nazis employed propaganda, hate-filled rhetoric, rabid antisemitism, paramilitary training, and the concept of self-sacrifice for the cause in order to ensure that there would be a crop of new young soldiers at the ready to feed the Third Reich. To quote Hitler, “He alone who owns the youth gains the future.”

It has been a monumental error in judgement to ignore the fact that UNRWA has been complicit in allowing a hate-filled education system to function unfettered in its schools all these years. If this indoctrination had been properly addressed decades ago, we would likely not be in the situation we are in today, faced with a population of Palestinians educated in UNRWA schools (for which the US was the major donor) unwilling to even consider a peaceful resolution to a conflict that has cost far too many innocent lives and benefits no one — certainly not Palestinians.

The indoctrination of impressionable children in a racist, violent ideology that encourages martyrdom puts a child’s personal well-being in jeopardy. In fact, the Palestinian education system meets the definition of child abuse as outlined by a number of organizations. For example: “The Convention of the Rights of the Child,” ratified by the UN General Assembly in 1989, recognizes and urges respect for the human rights of children. In particular, Article 19 calls for legislative, administrative, social, and educational actions to protect children from all forms of violence. The International Criminal Court has recognized that “conscripting or enlisting children under the age of 15 and using them to participate actively in hostilities” is a war crime….[To Read the Full Article Click the Following Link—Ed.]                                                                                                                                              Contents

   

IS ISRAEL’S INTERNATIONAL ISOLATION DIMINISHING?

Elliott Abrams

CFR, January 17, 2018

In December 2017, the UN General Assembly adopted a resolution rejecting and criticizing the U.S. decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. The vote was 128 in favor and 9 against (including Israel and the United States), with 35 abstaining and 21 absent. That result was variously interpreted as a sort of victory for the United States and Israel, in that fifty-five countries did not support the resolution, or a great defeat, reminiscent of the 1975 General Assembly resolution equating Zionism with racism. (That resolution was repealed in 1991.)

But Israel’s international standing at the start of 2018 is markedly different than it was in 1975. The 1975 vote reflected Israel’s isolation in the world, while the 2017 vote reflects Israel’s recent successes in diminishing that isolation. The pattern that could be developing is one in which Israel will lose votes in the General Assembly and other UN bodies (though sometimes by diminishing margins) while developing bilateral relationships with more and more countries, even Muslim-majority ones.

While Israel does maintain diplomatic relations with most countries, thirty-two UN members refuse diplomatic relations with the Jewish state; most are Muslim-majority countries. Israel has long been treated with unique severity in the UN system, where there has long been a nearly automatic majority for any resolution criticizing Israel or supporting the Palestinian cause, whether over Israeli settlement activity, claims of human rights abuses, Israeli responses to terrorist attacks, or other allegations. Its geographic location should place it within the Asia-Pacific Group in the United Nations along with its neighbors, but Arab states have prevented this, and, as a result, Israel has had to join the West European and Others Group instead.

According to Geneva-based watchdog group UN Watch, in the decade after its creation in June 2006, the UN Human Rights Council adopted 135 resolutions criticizing individual countries; 68 of them, or just over half, have been against Israel. The UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has over the last decade adopted about ten resolutions a year against Israel. Over that period, it adopted only one resolution criticizing any other country: Syria, in 2013. That focus largely explains why the United States and Israel announced their departure from UNESCO in 2017. The UN General Assembly itself has over the last decade adopted roughly twenty-five resolutions a year criticizing individual countries; more than 75 percent of them have targeted Israel.

How can Israel’s recent diplomatic progress be measured? First, the December 2017 General Assembly vote was followed by no concrete steps (some previous resolutions established special UN procedures targeting Israel or demanded that states take various actions against Israel). UN votes are significant indicators of symbolic support for the Palestinian cause or the two-state solution, but no country has changed its economic or diplomatic relationship with Israel in the wake of the latest UN vote, with the exception of Guatemala, which announced that it would follow the United States in moving its embassy to Jerusalem.

Second, there have been notable examples of Israel’s wider diplomatic outreach in the past two years. At the 2016 General Assembly session, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met with fifteen African heads of state and ambassadors. In November 2016, he became the first Israeli prime minister in three decades to travel to East Africa, where he met with the heads of Uganda, Kenya, Rwanda, and Ethiopia. Visiting Kenya again in November 2017, Netanyahu was received by President Uhuru Kenyatta at his residence on inauguration day; he was the only Western leader who took part in the festivities and was seated next to Kenyatta during the celebratory meal. He was also the only foreign leader asked to speak at the lunch. Similarly, in September 2017 Netanyahu set another diplomatic precedent, venturing to Argentina, Colombia, and Mexico in the first-ever trip by an Israeli prime minister to South America…

[To Read the Full Article Click the Following Link—Ed.]     

CIJR Wishes All Our Friends & Supporters: Shabbat Shalom!

 

Contents

On Topic Links

‘Many of Us Owe Meir Dagan Their Lives’: Moshe Ya’alon, Arutz Sheva, Mar. 21, 2018 —I congratulate the political, operational, and intelligence echelons on the decision and the implementation of the attack to destroy the nuclear reactor in Syria about a decade ago. This important operation reflects what the State of Israel has long advocated and maintained as policy.

Nikki Haley: A Warrior for Truth and Justice: Danny Danon, JNS, Oct. 11, 2018—Over the years, we have grown accustomed to seeing the United Nations as an institution of lies and twisted half-truths the likes of which are disseminated by Arab countries and our enemies around the world, but with Nikki Haley’s appointment as US ambassador to the United Nations, a new era was born.

Israel’s Nationality Law, UN Resolution 181, and the Arab List: Prof. Hillel Frisch, BESA, Sept. 21, 2018—Ever since 1988, when, after 40 years of rejection, the PLO feigned acceptance of General Assembly Resolution 181 on the partition of mandatory Palestine into Jewish and Arab states, the resolution has been the document used most frequently by Palestinians to underscore two of their major claims – the right to statehood within borders that were larger by far than those envisaged by the Oslo “peace” process, and the supposed “right of return.”

The Impact of Non-Orthodox Jews on America: Isi Leibler, Jerusalem Post, Oct. 10, 2018—There is no disputing that, except for the vast majority of Orthodox Jews, American Jews and their leaders have distanced themselves from their Jewish identity. In most cases, this reflects an indifference to global Jewish issues, and often, a deliberate display of contempt toward Israel and its security challenges and the belief that Israeli leaders are not willing to discard an “outdated nationalist ideology.”