Monday, April 15, 2002

WHY DO WE NEED THE U.N.? The U.N. Commission on Human Rights has condemned Israel for "acts of mass killings perpetrated by the Israeli occupying authorities" and affirmed the "legitimate right of Palestinian people to resist," the Washington Post reports. The "mass killings" bit is bad enough. First, no one knows how many Palestinians have been killed. The only present basis for this claim is Arab and Palestinian propaganda. Second, the statement does not distinguish between military and civilian casualties. If Israel has killed hundreds of civilians, that might be a cause for concern (though it might just be the consequence of brutal urban warfare; see, e.g. WWII). If Israel has killed hundreds of Palestinian soldiers and terrorists in battle, that would only be a cause for concern for people who support the Palestinians' military and terrorist campaign against Israel. But what's worse, it's hard to read this statement as anything besides tacit approval of Palestinian suicide attacks against Israeli civilians. The statement condemns Israel for "mass killings," but says nothing against Palestinian suicide attacks which are designed to kill and maim massive numbers of civilians. And it affirms without qualification the "legitimate right of Palestinian people to resist," which they have exercised most effectively by killing and maiming large numbers of Israeli civilians. Forty states, including France-We-Can't-Ensure-the-Protection-of-Jews-in-Our-Country, voted "yes." Britain, Germany, Canada, Guatemala, and the Czech Republic voted "no." Italy abstained. (The U.S. didn't get a seat on the commission last year, which was supposed to embarass us for some reason.) And so the isolation of Israel, and the moral meltdown of its enemies, continue apace.

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