From time to time, I have commented on the remarkable similarities between the UN generated fear of CO2 and the UN generated “centrality” of the so-called Israeli-Arab (or if you prefer, the Israel-Palestinian) conflict. Both of which are virtually guaranteed to lead to heated and – sadly, far too often incredibly ill-informed – diatribes emanating from those who appear to have swallowed hook, line and sinker whatever the latest and greatest UN-generated “let’s you and him fight” (about either issue) might be.
Both matters probably serve a useful purpose for the UN – and its ever-increasing army of bureaucrats – as distractions from their abysmal failure to deal with those matters that really do fall within the organization’s actual mandate.
To my mind, US President Obama has always been a very willing executioner/propagandist on both issues. But his latest efforts – on both fronts – are almost beyond belief. Particularly his ignorance, disrespect and arrogance towards Israel’s duly – and democratically – re-elected Prime Minister Netanyahu. When it comes to making mountains out of virtually invisible molehills, I can think of no one who matches Obama’s output (on either issue).
Who knows, perhaps this is why he was awarded the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize (after less than a year in ineffective office) “for his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples”.
YMMV, but I cannot think of anyone who has proven himself to be less deserving of such lofty commendation and praise than … Obama.
Mind you … on second thoughts – particularly considering their respective performances in the intervening years – it may well be a three-way tie between Obama, the UN (and, at the time, UN head honcho, Kofi Annan) in 2001, “for their work for a better organized and more peaceful world”; and the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in 1981, “for all it has done for countless refugees”.
The latter organization is certainly not doing too much for today’s refugees, under Ban ki-moon’s leadership. Nor does the UN as a whole seem capable of addressing the increasing problem of anti-Semitism. One has only to examine the abysmal performance record of the (mis-named) United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC).
In the five+ years that I’ve been following (primarily) the so-called “climate change” issue, I’ve learned a lot from my fellow so-called “deniers”. But every once in a while, I find myself quite astounded by a gratuitous, ignorant (and completely off-topic) slur against Israel. There was one such comment I encountered yesterday at Dr. Judith Curry’s blog. This was a post which she had titled, The stupid party and which she began to introduce as follows:
The emergence of candidates for U.S. President in the 2016 election is raising some interesting issues about climate change.
But there was one commenter who – for some unfathomable reason – chose to conclude his contribution to this particular discussion (my bold -hro):
So when I saw the guys running against Obama I held my nose and voted for the man. I think I was ok voting for Obama the first time, but I blew it the second time. But I really dislike today’s republicans, that clapping seal act with Netanyahu was a real disgrace. And that’s it for politics.
Gaia forbid anyone should have a more nuanced view of Israel – and/or Netanyahu and those who have a more informed view of Israel, its history, and its current situation. Least of all one who claims (as he appears to on his own blog) that some of his now-former best friends are Jews (OWTTE).
What this particular poster fails to realize is that the UN has a very effective anti-Israel propaganda machine. Just as it has a very effective anti-CO2 propaganda machine. If I thought there was any chance that he might be interested in learning some facts – as opposed to the propaganda which seems to colour his “views” of Israel – I would have recommended a few books for him to read.
All of the foregoing is by way of introduction to the “long but illuminating read” offered last month at The Tower from which a less brain-washed person than this poster (amongst others I’ve encountered from time to time) could benefit. It was written by the editor, David Hazony. A few excerpts (my bold -hro):
When a large number of foreign-policy experts—both Republicans and Democrats—falsely attribute many of the world’s ills to the Jewish state, they are channeling an ancient hatred. The time has come to say so.
for Israelis, in particular, the fact that fantastical claims about their country run rampant around the world is especially damaging. You may say what you will about the decline of anti-Semitism after the Holocaust, but today Israelis remain the only sovereign people whose very existence continues to be a delicate question, the greatest target of enlightened venom in polite Western circles, and the only country the hatred of which crosses civilizational and economic and cultural and class lines. Anti-Semitism may have morphed and modernized, but it continues to menace.
There has, of course, been some progress in identifying the newest forms of anti-Semitism and seeing it for what it is. In recent years, two major lines of attack on Israel have been revealed to be essentially anti-Semitic tropes, repackaged for a modern audience.
One was the claim, preposterous to anyone with an honest heart and a historical eye, that the vicious anti-Israel protest movement (of which the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions movement is only a part) had nothing to do with anti-Semitism. But in the wake of a decade of efforts, most famously spelled out in Natan Sharansky’s “3D test” (demonization, double-standards, delegitimization) to assess whether a given criticism crossed the line, the association of anti-Zionism with anti-Semitism has become much discussed—including in pronouncements by Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper and French Prime Minister Manuel Valls in the past year.
The second was the ancient trope of dual loyalty—that the Jew is never fully committed to his countrymen—which in our time was modernized through the concept of the “Israel Lobby,” made most famous by the essay and book of that name by Stephen Walt and John J. Mearsheimer. Here the claim was that by focusing on the network of organizations that advocate for Israel—most centrally AIPAC—you can discover why American foreign policy is so supportive of Israel when it so obviously shouldn’t be. […] while the anti-Israel lobby is heavily funded by foreign governments, the pro-Israel efforts have been built almost entirely on the strength of American taxpayers legitimately advocating their foreign-policy beliefs, and a broader American public that is very pro-Israel. The Israel Lobby was successful not because it was fair-minded or objectively interesting, but because it found a creative way to project the classic charge of dual loyalty onto the modern political landscape.
But there is a third, core premise of anti-Semitism that has been modernized—deeper and harder to see, but all the worse for it. Barely anyone has gone out on a limb to identify it as such, because to do so is to implicate an awful lot of very important people in something that sounds quite nefarious. But this idea has found its way into the most influential halls across the Western world and, decisively, in Washington […]
It is the classic anti-Semitic myth of the conspiracy—that Jews hold the keys to a very large part of what ails the world, and that if we just could somehow get rid of the problem, we would all be better off. In the 1920s, the great industrialist and vicious anti-Semite Henry Ford had no qualms about laying out the map and methods of Jewish domination as he saw it.
In the modern reinvention of the idea, however, it is not the Jewish people but the Jewish state that is the core problem in the world, the key obstacle to betterment.
The claim takes different forms and has long been fueled by the propaganda juggernaut of the Arab world. By the time it reaches the softer shoals of places like Foggy Bottom, of course, it goes through a filtration system of bureaucratic qualifiers. Not Israel as a whole is to blame, just the “policies of the current government,” […]
What all of these have in common is that despite the qualifiers, the Israel problem inevitably is inflated so radically, a twisted causality attributed, an implication that if only this problem—not Iran or Russia or North Korea or Syria or Europe’s immigrant crisis or anything else—were solved, then we’d all be having a lot more fun. […] all the decades of this conflict have claimed only a tiny fraction of the lives lost in neighboring Syria in the last five years alone; despite the fact that every single armed conflict Israel has faced in the last decade has been caused not by Palestinian suffering but by Iranian proxies initiating attacks on peaceful civilians while Tehran clandestinely works to build a nuclear bomb.
Hazony next discusses – at great length – The Myth of Centrality, whereby (my phrasing, not his) whatever the problem in the Middle East, it could oh-so-easily be solved if only there was a Palestinian state. Notwithstanding the elephant in the room: The simple fact that ever since the 1993 Oslo Accords, Palestinian negotiators have repeatedly walked away from every Israeli offer on the negotiating table – without even so much as a hint of a counter-offer.
He also discusses “The Elders“:
Before you dismiss [Jimmy Carter] as the dotty ex-POTUS who spouts crazy commentary at every opportunity, please recall that he is currently sitting at the global core of the tone-setting eminences-grises, a founding member of the creepily-named “Elders” group founded by Nelson Mandela that also includes non-slouches like Desmond Tutu, Kofi Annan, and Mary Robinson, the last of whom has been responsible for turning the UN’s human rights effort into a sham of perpetual slander of the Jewish State at the expense of all the other atrocities happening on our planet.
(The Elders, it should be said, claim to be “committed to promoting the shared interests of humanity, and the universal human rights we all share,” but curiously there are only three region-specific subject areas featured prominently on their website. The first of these is Iran, where the goal is not to fight against human rights abuses or the execution of women, or to stanch the terrorism that spews from its loins, or to prevent its getting a nuclear weapon, but instead to “support greater openness and dialogue between Iran and the international community, and encourage Iran to play a stabilizing role in the wider Middle East.”
The second is “Israel-Palestine,” which offers the uncontroversial goal of “encourag[ing] all parties to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict who are working for a lasting, just peace.” And the third is Myanmar, an odd choice of a country that gets virtually no media attention, and whose appearance there seems to be meant to dilute rather than advance their central message.)
But the most important thing we need to recognize when we step back and look at the words and deeds of Jimmy Carter and Mary Robinson and Chas Freeman and Edward Djerejian and Jack Straw and Zbigniew Brzezinski and all the others is not just that Israel is not now and never was the real source of trouble around the Middle East, but that to maintain such a belief today, in the face of so much evidence to the contrary, can only be ascribed to precisely the same form of political irrationality we began with—specifically the clinical need to find a single scary cause behind everything.
But speaking of Mary Robinson and “single scary causes” within the purview of the UN, let us not forget that as I had noted in July of last year:
Ireland’s former PM, Mary Robinson … was recently elevated to the position of “Special Envoy on Climate Change” by UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki-Moon.
Which prompted me to paraphrase an old song:
So, here’s to you, Mrs. Robinson / Ki-Moon holds a special place / For those who say (such things as):
We need to change the debate on climate change – to move beyond its construct as a scientific or environmental problem and to realise that it is in essence an issue of development and of rights. Taking a climate justice approach to climate change means you respect human rights. I particularly welcome the Human Rights Council’s reaffirmation that human rights principles and obligations can inform and strengthen policy making on climate change at all levels.
Never let it be said that the UN fails to “recycle”. And perish the thought that we should forget that the “single scary cause” of “climate change” – according to the UN – is the dreaded CO2. Not only that, but the UN-dedicated army seems to have very silently stolen Scharansky’s “3d test” of demonization, double-standards, and delegitimization which they apply to those who have the temerity to question the holy writ of “climate change”.
Small world, eh?!