By Stanford Matthews
Blog @ MoreWhat.com
Ban Ki Moon, the current Secretary General of the UN who follows Kofi Annan in that role has presented both contrast and similarities to his predecessor. At face value, his suggestion that all countries should be treated equally with regard to human rights policies is fair and should be an obvious conclusion to draw for reasonable people. If the Islamic Council had not criticized him for the remarks with accusations of taking sides, this would have been just another press item from the United Nations. Without the noise from the Islamic Council, Moon's remarks would have resembled the style of Annan by overstating the obvious. Moon's subtle insinuation was detected by this story's antagonists.
The excerpt and video below provide a dramatic presentation of the situation and further explain what most already know. Some of the nations in the UN are deflecting attention from their abusive policies by pointing their fingers at Israel as the sole target of a scheme to shift guilt.
UN Watch Briefing
Analysis and Commentary from UN Watch in Geneva
July 11, 2007 — Issue 163
New Video: UN Human Rights Council Members—In Their Own Words
At its recent June 2007 session, the UN Human Rights Council concluded its lengthy reform process by voting, first, to drop Belarus and Cuba from its blacklist. New restrictions were imposed on the independent experts who report on country violations. The ability to introduce resolutions that name abusers was curbed. And Israel was singled out for permanent indictment—subjected to the council's sole agenda item on a specific country, and to the sole investigation that examines only one side, presumes guilt in advance, and is immune from review.
The Human Rights Council of the United Nations has been under fire since its inception. This year is no different. The report below is from the UN's own documents and is a brief insight to another flawed initiative from an organization that continues to give new reasons why there is another meaning to the name United Nations. Just in what and how are they united? Can the world really afford to continue these sham activities? What can this sort of behavior ever solve? There are essentially rhetorical questions.
Fourteen nations elected to serve on UN Human Rights Council
17 May 2007 – Fourteen countries have been elected to serve on the United Nations Human Rights Council after two rounds of balloting among Member States today at UN Headquarters in New York.
Angola, Bolivia, Egypt, India, Indonesia, Madagascar, the Netherlands, Nicaragua, the Philippines, Qatar, Slovenia and South Africa were successful after the first round of voting, while Bosnia and Herzegovina and Italy were chosen following a second round.
Here is a response from the other side of the issue.
Ki-Moon Criticized Over Israel
by Marc Shoffman - Thursday 2nd August 2007
Muslim states in the United Nations Human Rights Council have been criticized after attacking UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon for sticking up for Israel.
Pakistan, speaking on behalf of the UN’s 57-strong Organization of the Islamic Conference at a UN meeting last Wednesday, attacked Ki-Moon after he said it was unfair to single out Israel for permanent review.
Ban said all countries should be treated equally after a resolution by the Council last June which put Israel’s human rights conduct under permanent review while failing to name any other countries.
(click to read the rest)
An excerpt from a recent speech by Ban Ki Moon demonstrates both his similarities and contrasts to Annan. The contrast is another reference to some truth about the UN while his other statements sound like Annan in his limp defense of the United Nations.
Unfortunately over the last six decades, even though the United Nations has been promoting human rights, peace and development, it has not enjoyed proper appreciation.
Polls show that two thirds of Americans think the United Nations is doing a poor job. Yet these same polls show that even larger majorities (74 per cent, to be exact) believe the United Nations should play a larger role in the world –- whether intervening to prevent genocide or aggressively investigating human rights abuses. An equally healthy percentage of Americans believe that the nation’s foreign policy should be conducted in partnership with the United Nations. (Read the full report) CLICK
Even the Secretary General points to data showing that two out of three Americans look unfavorably towards the United Nations. He may have misinterpreted the 74% figure. Perhaps three out of four Americans answered the way they did indicating the UN does little if anything to fulfill its obligations. Do something!!! That may be the real sentiment of those represented in the poll.
But Moon should get some credit for his remarks about human rights and how all countries should be treated equally. Yet nosing in to US affairs regarding incarceration of illegal aliens and allowing the Human Rights Council and the Islamic Council to conspire against others, especially in such blatant fashion, should be quelled. So his remarks may have been just another empty PR task from an empty leader. To be fair, more time should pass before judging this individual. But all experience and history thus far suggests a low probability of any improvements
Even the recent activity with distributing peace keeping forces around the world has more chance of causing more sexual abuse cases than resolving conflict. The UN must successfully string together a number of significant, positive accomplishments that can withstand global scrutiny before any optimism can be displayed.