Monday, June 1, 2020 -
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America’s schizophrenic relationship with the UN

What’s going on with America and the UN? Three years ago, when the UN’s Human Rights Council was formed, the US opted not to hold a seat, but did choose to contribute financially to the Council. Two years later the US withdrew completely, accusing the Council of a systematic bias against Israel. Then, last month, the US announced it would pull out of the so-called Durban II conference, the follow-up to the disaster that was the first Durban conference, which took place in 2001 and turned into little more than a soapbox for anti-Zionists.

How many of us were at the edge of our seats, a nervous, anxious feeling permeating our insides, thinking – hoping – that salvation was imminent, that the US was just steps away from abandoning the UN altogether.

Then, just this week, “In reversal, US to join UN rights council.”

We do understand the Obama administration’s rationale, namely that the only way the US can instigate any change within UN institutions is by participating, not by withholding its membership.

But then we’re faced with the real questions: Are these institutions worth saving? Does any real possibility of change even exist?

According to UN Watch, a Geneva based UN watchdog, 80% of all resolutions passed by the Human Rights Council have been against Israel. Despite myriad conflicts around the globe – including Darfur, DR Congo and Sri Lanka – nearly all of the Council’s condemnations focus on one country. Not only does this record expose a glaring bias, but even worse, by focusing almost exclusively on Israel, the Council is ignoring the heinous human rights violations taking place in other conflict zones.

And really, what is the point of all this resolution passing? Has anything concrete or substantial resulted from the mass of resolutions?

In these times of economic crisis, we should be asking why our tax money is going to support the UN apparatus. Is it an effective institution? Or has it simply become the new millenium’s Non-Aligned Movement?

3 thoughts on “America’s schizophrenic relationship with the UN

  1. Ben M.

    Every point you make about the UN’s ineffecitivness, or hostility to human rights and Israel, is right. However, we have no choice but to stick with the UN. If we don’t, it will be worse, much worse. For the US to support the UN is the best of bad choices.

  2. Rocky Mountain Jew

    @Ben M. Why much worse? It stands to reason that if the US would pull out of the UN, other Western countries would follow suit. Durban is the perfect example. And if that were to happen, who would fund all the bureaucracy?

  3. Avi Schwartz

    Excellent and insightful, as usual Rocky Moutain Jew. Read Bret Stephens in Wall Street Journal opinion piece from two days ago, April 21. He hits the nail on the head and correlates with what you wrote.


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