Those outraged over the UN resolution

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Those outraged over the UN resolution should be more concerned with Israel’s nukes aimed at us!

By Dr. Patrick Slattery

The response to the recent vote in the United Nations Security Council over Israeli settlements has caused quite an uproar, which as usual completely misses the relevant points.

The political “right” in the United States has pretty much roundly condemned the Obama administration over not exercising its veto power to block what was otherwise a unanimous vote by the UNSC. Not just the Neocucks, mind you, but even paleo-conservative Pat Buchanan penned an article that, while not exactly condemning the UN resolution, used it as an example of why we should get out of the United Nations. This tacit support of Israel’s position by Buchanan was backed up by his calling war criminal Netanyahu “Bibi” and referring to Israel by the feminine pronoun “she,” which is something that we English speakers don’t do when referring to countries.

On the other hand, it is ridiculous to either praise or criticize Obama for “bitch-slapping” Netanyahu over this vote. Obama spent his entire eight years in office bending over backwards (forwards, more like it) for Israel. He completely shut his eyes to the murderous bombing of Gaza during the month of his inauguration, he signed on to the biggest-ever military give away package to Israel, did Israel’s bidding in fomenting civil war in Syria, and forced Iran into a very unfair nuclear deal that completely ignores Israel’s nuclear arsenal that poses an existential threat to the rest of the world.

The text of the resolution is extremely tame, merely stating that Israel should abide by international law. Try to find anything anti-Semitic or unfair in the text of Resolution 2334. But is contains no enforcement mechanism, just a request that the Secretary-General to report to the Council every three months. So despite the outrage on the part of Jews and Zio-cucks, the passage of the resolution is hardly a victory worth celebrating, although the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement might hail the development. (Oh, I forgot, we are not allowed to use the world “hail” anymore. That would make us Nazis.)

The largely Jewish-led BDS movement gets people to measure victory or defeat by the number of Jewish housing units that are built in East Jerusalem or the West Bank. We are then encouraged to define our allies, who are the good guys and bad guys, by this measure. This turns many liberal Jews into “allies.”

But the real issue is that Israel has amassed hundreds of nuclear weapons and the missile, bomber, and submarine systems to deliver them to European capitals and even American cities. Yet thanks to the BDS movement, liberal Jews who support Israel’s capacity to genocide Europeans with these weapons are somehow our allies.

NOBODY is talking about Israel’s nuclear menace, even as we are putting our entire foreign policy behind protecting Israel from a non-existent Iranian nuclear menace. Israel has a Samson Option, whereby it would nuke European (and other) capitals should it be faced with regime change. Given that Jews effectively control the US and Europe, if Jewish power in these countries is “regime changed” would that trigger the Samson option?

This is the situation that President Trump will be faced with. Many of us, myself very much included, have been banking on an assumption that despite all his pro-Israel rhetoric, despite his two Jewish children-in-law, Trump understands the Jewish problem and the threat that Israel poses to the world. If for no other reason, my faith in Trump is due to the unprecedented level of Jewish hostility towards him.

But also remember that he has on numerous occasions indicated that he does not show his hand regarding military actions. He has said this while criticizing the Obama administration for allegedly announcing its plans for fighting ISIS in advance. One would hope that Trump has plans to deal with Jewish power that he is not revealing.

My hope, vain as it might be, is that Trump is throwing Israel a bone by moving the embassy to Jerusalem, which is as meaningless a pro-Israel gesture as Resolution 2334 is a meaningless anti-Israel gesture. He will also allow Goldman Sachs Jews to continue running the Wall Street casino, at least for the time being. By doing so, he may not win the support of many Jews, but he will keep the support of evangelicals and military types on the right, whose deprogramming will take some time. He may also avoid a Fed/Wall Street sabotaging of the economy this way.

This would allow him to address the demographic threat posed by immigration. If he cannot make substantial progress on immigration, then we may never again be able to elect a president who supports the interests of white people.

If Trump can score some economic victories and deport the worst criminal aliens, he could acquire the political capital he needs to get Congress to revise the legal immigration system, which needs to do away with birthright citizenship for anchor babies and become much more restrictive on immigration in general. These legal changes have to be in place before he can even contemplate mass deportations for otherwise law-abiding illegal aliens. This is because mass deportations will deplete political capital and many of those deported will be able to come back legally if the legal system is not already changed.

But getting back to Israel. I have every sympathy for the Palestinians who are being ethnically cleansed by Israel, but we really need to be focused on the fact that traitors in the United States and Europe have for decades been equipping Israel with the weaponry needed for Israel to keep the planet hostage to Jewish overlords in the diaspora. At some point, Trump or a successor will have to put military contingency plans in place so we can find a way to neutralize this threat.

Posted in Palestine Affairs, ZIO-NAZI, UN0 Comments

US abstains as UN condemns Jewish Nazi settlements

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US abstains as UN condemns Israeli settlements

Image result for Israeli settlements CARTOON

A gift on Christmas Eve that we did not expect from the Obama Administration 

Quoted below directly from Dec 24, 2016, London Financial Times.  We Hold These Truths’ volunteers thanks you for reading, helping, supporting our work, and some for praying for us all year long. -Editor CEC

“The UN Security Council has passed a landmark resolution condemning Israel over the expansion of settlements in the occupied Palestinian Territories, after the US abstained, allowing the measure to go through despite harsh criticism from Donald Trump and the Israeli government.

 The resolution passed with 14 votes, including France and the UK, in the 15-member council after the US departed from its longstanding policy of shielding Israel.

The Obama administration did not veto the measure because of the acceleration in settlement activity that has occurred since the US vetoed a similar resolution in 2011.

“The Security Council reaffirmed its established consensus that settlements have no legal validity,” said Samantha Power, US ambassador to the UN. “The US has been sending the message that the settlements must stop, privately and publicly, for nearly five decades.”

The vote infuriated Israel and its congressional allies in the US. Benjamin Netanyahu, the Israeli prime minister who has a poor relationship with Barack Obama, said Israel “rejects this shameful anti-Israel resolution at the UN and will not abide by its terms”.

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Next step, sanctions please

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Law-breaking, resolution-busting Israel in a sulk after being told to play by the rules.

Nothing could have been more calculated to ruin Hanukka for the Israeli High Command and bring Christmas cheer to the Palestinian Christians and Muslims they have abused and terrorised for decades. Yes,  the UN Security Council finally had the balls to adopt a resolution condemning Israeli “settlements” (posh word for illegal squats) on stolen Palestinian lands.

A statement from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office says: “Israel rejects this shameful anti-Israel resolution at the UN and will not abide by its terms.”

That’s good. The BDS boys and girls with be rubbing their hands with glee. It’ll mean a massive boost for the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions campaign, particlarly as 200 legal scholars and practising lawyers from 15 European countries have assured everyone – including those governments that misuse their power to try to scupper boycotting of Israeli goods and other interests – that BDS is actually a lawful exercise of freedom of expression. It is protected by the International Convention on Civil and Political Rights and any attempt to outlaw it undermines a basic human right and amounts to supporting Israel’s violations of international law.

A not-so-good consequence is that Israel’s attitude problem is likely to ratchet-up anti-Semitism yet again. But Israelis are well aware that Jews worldwide suffer for the Jewish State’s misbehaviour, so the remedy is largely in their own hands.

Still railing against the Security Council, Netanyahu says: “Peace will come not through UN resolutions, but only through direct negotiations between the parties.” He speaks, of course, with his military jackboot on the neck of the Palestinian people. His idea of negotiations, as always, is holding a gun to the head of the other party. As everyone, especially America, knows peace doesn’t suit Israel’s purpose although the pretense of seeking peace does.

And not content with defying the UN, Netanyahu wants revenge on the countries that co-sponsored the resolution, namely New Zealand, Malaysia, Venezuela and Senegal. He’s taking petty diplomatic reprisals against NZ and Senegal like recalling ambassadors and cancelling official visits.

Settlements “a flagrant violation under international law”

So what exactly does the resolution say? It condemns all measures aimed at altering the demographic composition, character and status of the Palestinian Territory occupied since 1967, including East Jerusalem, and the construction and expansion of settlements, transfer of Israeli settlers, confiscation of land, demolition of homes and displacement of Palestinian civilians, in violation of international humanitarian law and relevant resolutions.

The resolution also:

  1. Reaffirms that the establishment by Israel of settlements in the Palestinian territory occupied since 1967, including East Jerusalem, has no legal validity and constitutes a flagrant violation under international law and a major obstacle to the achievement of the two-State solution and a just, lasting and comprehensive peace;
  2. Reiterates its demand that Israel immediately and completely cease all settlement activities in the occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem, and that it fully respect all of its legal obligations in this regard;
  3. Underlines that it will not recognize any changes to the 4 June 1967 lines, including with regard to Jerusalem, other than those agreed by the parties through negotiations;
  4. Stresses that the cessation of all Israeli settlement activities is essential for salvaging the two-State solution, and calls for affirmative steps to be taken immediately to reverse the negative trends on the ground that are imperilling the two-State solution;
  5. Calls upon all States to distinguish, in their relevant dealings, between the territory of the State of Israel and the territories occupied since 1967.

The US didn’t have the backbone to support the resolution, only to abstain. Furthermore, despite its tough wording, this was only a Chapter 6 resolution with more growl than bite. The situation clearly calls for a Chapter 7 job as Israel’s actions most definitely “constitute a threat to the peace, a breach of the peace, or an act of aggression” requiring coercive and enforceable measures.

Nevertheless it wasn’t entirely a waste of time. It turns a spotlight on Israel’s criminal conduct, it will have the effect of releasing the brake on various civil society actions against Israel – especially BDS – and it will hasten the day when countries slap sanctions on the rogue state and demand Israel’s expulsion for repeatedly failing to meet the obligations of UN membership.

The US ambassador to the UN, Samantha Power, explaining America’s reasons for applying her veto, quoted Reagan in 1982: “The United States will not support the use of any additional land for the purpose of settlements during the transitional period….  Further settlement activity is in no way necessary for the security of Israel and only diminishes the confidence of the Arabs that a final outcome can be freely and fairly negotiated.”

She said those words “highlight the United States’ long-standing position that Israeli settlement activity in territories occupied in 1967 undermines Israel’s security, harms the viability of a negotiated two-state outcome, and erodes prospects for peace and stability in the region. Today, the Security Council reaffirmed its established consensus that settlements have no legal validity. The United States has been sending the message that the settlements must stop – privately and publicly – for nearly five decades.”

As Power also pointed out, the total settler [squatter] population in the West Bank and East Jerusalem now exceeds 590,000 and nearly 90,000 are living beyond the separation Wall which itself cuts well into Palestinian territory.  In the last few months Israel has planned for more than 2,600 new settlement units. “Rather than dismantling these and other settler outposts, which are illegal even under Israeli law, now there is new legislation advancing in the Israeli Knesset that would legalize most of the outposts – a factor that propelled the decision by this resolution’s sponsors to bring it before the Council.”

However, even if every settlement was dismantled Israel’s military occupation of the West Bank and Jerusalem and blockade of Gaze would still be in place.

The World Jewish Congress (WJC) President Ronald S. Lauder complains that once again the UN “singles out Israel for condemnation. It is shocking that 14 of the 15 members of this council voted in favor of the resolution.” Whining about Israel being singled out is a favourite refrain, as is another of Lauder’s remarks that peace can only be reached through bilateral talks between Israelis and Palestinians.

People like Lauder don’t seem to comprehend that peace can only be achieved within a the framework of international law and a level playing field. Lopsided negotiation between an armed bully still in possession of stolen property and an unarmed, dispossessed weakling is no basis for a just peace.

Meanwhile J-Wire reports that Christian Zionists in New Zealand – the Flaxmere Christian Fellowship – condemn what their pastor calls “the anti-Israel resolution outlawing Israeli settlements.” He adds: “We are disgusted at the leading role New Zealand played today at the UN. This is a day of shame for New Zealand. This resolution denies the rights of the Jewish People to build and live on the Holy Land of Israel, Land that has been promised to them in an everlasting resolution by a much greater authority than the New Zealand Government or the United Nations but by the God of Nations Himself….

“At a time when we should be celebrating the birth of the Jewish Saviour we have decided instead to back an anti-Semitic, anti-Israel Resolution at the United Nations. We condemn the UN Resolution completely.”

All that matters, then, is the mythical rights of the “Jewish People”, not the legitimate rights of the genuine Palestinians. They don’t even get a mention.

The Flaxmere Christian Fellowship website carries a map showing occupied Palestine as all-Israel. It promotes the following statement: “Regarding Israel, we believe it is their God given right to inherit the Bible Land of their forefathers, and this includes Judea & Samaria (West Bank) which is currently the matter of dispute between Israel and those who call themselves Palestinians.

“Part of the problem regarding the Middle East conflict is ignorance. Many people are ignorant of the historical facts not to speak of the Bible narrative. We as a church aim to bring education to people —especially Christians, regarding the unique plan God has for the Jewish People & Israel in these last days.”

Ignorance? Facts? Education? This “Christian fellowship”

  • believes that God has a unique plan for the Jewish people and the Nation of Israel.
  • believes that as Christians they are called to bless and support the Jewish people and if they do so God Himself will bless them.

Inside the church the flag of Israel hangs beside the New Zealand flag. It’s an interesting insight into the mixed-up mind of the Zionist.

Netanyahu’s office states that ​​”Israel looks forward to working with President-elect Trump and with all our friends in Congress, Republicans and Democrats alike, to negate the harmful effects of this absurd resolution.” So he’s banking on Trump being as crazed as he is.  If that turns out to be the case, we’re all in trouble.

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UN Resolution 2334 is good for I$raHell

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UN Resolution 2334 is good for Israel

It is the Israelis who don’t miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity.

On 23 December the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) voted to adopt a resolution condemning Israeli settlement activity as illegal, and demanding that Israel “immediately and completely cease all settlement activities in the occupied Palestinian territory, including east Jerusalem”.

For once, the USA decided to join the rest of humanity and didn’t veto the resolution.  The message is obvious: if Zionism was a promise to make the Jews people like other people, its failure is colossal. The Jewish State and its lobbies are people like no other. 14 out of 15 members of the UNSC voted against Israel, the US abstained. In the most clear terms, the UNSC denounced the Jewish state’s treatment of the Palestinian people. If Israel would be an ordinary state, as Zionism initially promised,  it would take some time to reflect on the resolution and consider the necessary measures to amend its public image. But as one would expect, the Jewish State did the complete opposite. It took the path of the bully and decided to punish the world.

In his first reaction to the resolution Israeli PM Netanyahu told his followers that the Security Council’s behaviour was “shameful.” He also harshly denounced President Obama’s choice to abstain. A list of American elected spineless characters were quick to cry havoc and promised to correct the damage.  Netanyahu has instructed Israel’s ambassadors in New Zealand and Senegal to “return to Israel for consultations.” A scheduled visit of the Ukrainian PM in Jerusalem next week was cancelled.  Netanyahu also ordered to block the shekel pipeline to some UN institutions.

But things may be slightly more complicated than they look at first glance.  If the One (Bi-National) State is an existential threat to Israel being the Jewish state, then the recent UN resolution is obviously a last attempt to revive the Two-State Solution. It, de facto, legitimises the existence of the Jewish State within the pre-1967 borders.

The resolution provides Israel with a practical and pragmatic opportunity to dissolve the West Bank settlements. Banks and businesses may start to refrain from operating in the occupied territories. Israeli military personnel serving in the occupied territories are about to become subject to the scrutiny of international law. Netanyahu, so it seems, made a fuss about the resolution, but the resolution plays into his hands. It provides him with an opportunity to break the stalemate with the Palestinians. Netanyahu knows it. President Obama knows it, the president-elect will be advised about as soon as he takes some time off Twitter.

But if the resolution serves Israeli national and security interests, why did Netanyahu react like a bully? The answer is simple. Bibi is a populist. Like president-elect Trump he knows what his people are like. He knows what the Jews and the Israelis seek in their leader. They want their king to celebrate Jewish exceptionalism. They want their master to perform contempt towards the Goyim. PM Netanyahu knows very well that David Ben Gurion (the legendary first Israeli PM)  dismissed the UN, famously saying “it doesn’t matter what the Goyim say, the only thing that matters is what Jews do.”

It is far from clear whether Ben Gurion was really dismissive of Goyim. However, he was loved by his people for conveying the image as if he did. Bibi follows the same rule. In the public eye, he is dismissive of the UN, he is full with contempt to the nations and Goyim in general. But in practice he knows that the resolution is essential for the existence of the Jewish state. It is probably the last opportunity to scale down the pretentious Zionist dream and make it fit with the reality on the ground.  Let me reassure you, I don’t hold my breath. In reality it is actually the Israelis who don’t miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity.

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UN Security Council Seats Taken by Arms Exporters

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By Lyndal Rowlands

Image result for UN Security Council CARTOON

Nine of the world’s top ten arms exporters will sit on the UN Security Council between mid-2016 and mid-2018.

The nine include four rotating members — Spain, Ukraine, Italy and the Netherlands — from Europe, as well as the council’s five permanent members — China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States.

According to 2015 data from the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), these nine countries make up the world’s top ten exporters of arms. Germany ranked at number 5, is the only top 10 exporter which is not a recent, current or prospective member of the 15-member council.

However, Pieter Wezeman, Senior Researcher in the Arms and Military Expenditure Programme at SIPRI told IPS that he was not “surprised at all” to see so many arms exporters on the council.

“In reality it is business as usual: the five permanent members of the Security Council are of course in many ways the strongest military powers,” said Wezeman.

Just two permanent members, the United States with 33 percent and Russia with 25 percent, accounted for 58 percent of total global arms exports in 2015, according to SIPRI data. China and France take up third and fourth place with much smaller shares of 5.9 percent and 5.6 percent respectively.

The status of several rotating Security Council members as arms exporters while “interesting”, may be mostly “coincidence,” added Wezeman.

Current conflicts in Yemen and Syria pose contrasting examples of the relative influence that Security Council members have as arms exporters.

“Some of the major crises that the Security Council is now grappling with, particularly Yemen for example, have in large part been brought about the actions of its own members in selling arms to conflict parties,” Anna Macdonald, Director of Control Arms told IPS.

“We’ve been calling persistently for a year now for arms transfers to Saudi Arabia to be suspended in the context of the Yemen crisis, because of the severe level of the humanitarian suffering that exists there and because of the specific role that arms transfers are playing in that.”

Macdonald says that the transfer of arms to Saudi Arabia for use in Yemen violates both humanitarian law and the Arms Trade Treaty.

“Some of the major crises that the Security Council is now grappling with, particularly Yemen for example, have in large part been brought about the actions of its own members in selling arms to conflict parties,” Anna Macdonald.

Domestic pressure from civil society organisations, however, have caused some European countries, including Sweden which will join the Security Council in January 2017, to restrict arms sales to Saudi Arabia, said Wezeman. Sweden, which will hold a seat on the council from January 2017 to December 2018, comes in as the world’s number 12 arms exporter.

However arms exports from Security Council members are not necessarily a significant source of weapons in conflicts under consideration by the council.

For example, council members have been hinting at the prospect of an arms embargo against South Sudan for much of 2016, however the weapons used in South Sudan are not closely related to exports from Security Council members.

“South Sudan is a country which acquires primarily cheap, simple weapons. It doesn’t need the latest model tank, it can do with a tank which is 30 or 40 years old,” said Wezeman.

According to Wezeman, it is more likely that political rather than economic considerations impact Security Council members’ decisions regarding arms embargoes, since profits from arms sales are “limited compared to their total economy.”

“Most of the states that are under a UN arms embargo are generally poor countries where the markets for anything, including arms, are not particularly big,” he added.

Overall, however Macdonald says that Security Council members have special responsibilities in the maintenance of international peace and security, and this extends also to their particular responsibilities as arms exporters.

“We would obviously cite the UN Article 5: promote maintenance of peace with the least diversion for armament,” she said.

“We would argue that the 1.3 trillion that’s currently allocated to military expenditure is not in keeping with the spirit or letter of the UN charter,” she added, noting that this is significantly more than it would cost to eradicate extreme poverty.

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Naziyahu Cancels Ukrainian PM’s Visit to ‘Israel’ Over Security Council Vote

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Image result for netanyahu cartoon

The decision was made in light of Ukraine’s vote in favor of a resolution condemning Jewish Nazi illegal settlements, senior Nazi official says.

Ukrainian Parliament Speaker Volodymyr Groysman addresses deputies at the parliament in Kiev, Ukraine before being voted in as the new prime minister on April 14, 2016. Valyntyn Ogirenko, Reuters
Benjamin Naziyahu has decided to cancel a visit by Ukrainian Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman, who was scheduled to arrive in the Nazi state of ‘Israel’ in the coming week. A senior Nazi official in Jerusalem noted that the decision was taken in light of Ukraine’s vote in favor of Friday’s United Nations Security Council resolution critical of the Nazi regime illegal Jewish settlement policy.
Naziyahu addressed the UN resolution on Saturday evening, saying that the Obama administration had carried out an “underhanded and an anti-Israel maneuver” at the Security Council. The prime minister call the resolution “crazy” and vowed to cut funding to UN institutions, while reviewing Nazi state relations with the international organization.

On Friday, Naziyahu bureau announced that Nazi ambassadors to New Zealand and Senagal, two of the countries that pushed for the vote on the UN resolution, had been recalled and that sanctions would be put in place against both countries as well.

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Conflict instigators must foot humanitarian crises bills – Russian Emergencies Minister to UN

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Image result for humanitarian TO SYRIA CARTOON
RT 

The head of Russia’s Emergencies Ministry has proposed a new economic model of humanitarian assistance and reparation payments to victims of war zones, recommending that initiators of conflict pay for the destruction and suffering caused by their policies.

“The Russian Federation proposes to build a new economic model of international humanitarian aid,” Vladimir Puchkov told the UN General Assembly in New York. The model is quite simple, according to Puchkov, who said that nations which initiate, incite and sponsor conflicts in other states should be “obliged to bear primary responsibility, including financial” for providing aid to refugees and persons internally displaced as a result.

The need to create a new mechanism arises from the lack of funding for international humanitarian relief budgets. Currently only around 5 percent of the funds required to remedy the widespread destruction and suffering are available, the Russian minister said.

To reduce the financial burden on the international humanitarian aid system, associated with the rise of terrorism and waves of refugees, Puchkov also stressed the need to focus on conflict prevention.

“We believe that settlement and conflict prevention is the best approach to reducing the burden on the international humanitarian system,” the minister said in a report at the 71st session of the UN General Assembly.

In order to improve the quality of international aid the minister also offered to take additional measures and help develop local crises response capabilities in conflict-torn countries.

“Instead of trying to provide for the millions of refugees in Europe, it is necessary to create opportunities for them to stay at home, or at least in the same region,” Puchkov noted.

Among other things, Puchkov urged that the international community intensify efforts to improve the international legal and contractual framework which would allow aid to quickly reach affected areas. Meanwhile developing countries, the minister said, should also recognize their responsibility and not remain “passive recipients.”

Speaking about the Russian contribution to global humanitarian aid missions, Puchkov highlighted that this year Russia participated in over 40 missions across the globe, offering aid to over 10 countries. Besides Syria and Ukraine, some of the recent recipients of Russian aid include countries such as Yemen and Afghanistan, in addition to western states such as Italy and Portugal. Overall, Russia engaged in over 450 missions across the globe over the last quarter of a century.

In addition, over the last three years, Moscow has sent more than $250 million to battle humanitarian crisis in a number of countries, by sending emergency food and medical assistance to populations affected by conflict and natural disasters.

The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), which coordinates international humanitarian relief efforts said that last year more than 76 million people from 31 countries needed assistance. The UN office also noted in 2015 some 51 million people were displaced worldwide, which is the highest number since WWII.

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The United Nations’ “Incomplete Apology” to Haiti

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cholera haiti

United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon, who will step down at the end of this month, made his most explicit apology yet for the UN’s role and responsibility in Haiti’s cholera epidemic, the world’s worst.

However, in his ballyhooed Dec. 1 address to the UN General Assembly, Ban stopped short of admitting that UN soldiers militarily occupying Haiti since 2004 introduced the deadly bacterial disease into the country in 2010.

“On behalf of the United Nations, I want to say very clearly: we apologize to the Haitian people,” Ban said in the nugget of his long speech in French, English, and Kreyòl. “We simply did not do enough with regard to the cholera outbreak and its spread in Haiti. We are profoundly sorry for our role.”

UN Special Rapporteur Philip Alston, whose scathing report last August put Ban on the hot seat, rightly dubbed it a “half-apology.”

“He apologizes that the UN has not done more to eradicate cholera, but not for causing the disease in the first place,” Alston told the Guardian.

The epidemic began in October 2010 when cholera-laced sewage from Nepalese UN soldiers’ outhouses leaked into the headwaters of Haiti’s most important river, the Artibonite. Within a year, it had spread throughout the country. To date, cholera has killed about 10,000 Haitians and sickened one million.

Ban’s 11th hour “half-apology” comes after a relentless campaign of legal suits, popular protests, letter writing, condemnation by celebrities, and a withering torrent of critical press reports, books, and films.

The legal crusade began on Nov. 3, 2011 when lawyers with the Boston-based Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti (IJDH) filed a claim within the UN’s internal grievance system to obtain compensation for Haiti’s cholera victims, as well as a formal apology and the construction of modern water and sanitation systems. They were rebuffed in February 2013, a year and a half later, with a two page letter simply stating that the claims were “not receivable” because the UN enjoys legal immunity.

For the next three years, the IJDH, along with other legal teams, attempted to sue the UN in New York State courts, but in 2015 and 2016 decisions, both district and appeals courts upheld the UN’s legal immunity, as argued by U.S. government attorneys. (The UN never deigned to appear.)

But as lawyer Brian Concannon, Jr., the IJDH’s executive director, noted: “Every time they had a victory in court supporting their supposed legal immunity, it turned into a public relations disaster due to the negative press coverage and its amplification by social media.”

As Special Rapporteur Alston remarked, the UN was employing a “stonewalling” strategy and “double standard” which “undermines both the UN’s overall credibility and the integrity of the Office of the Secretary-General.”

It is true that the United Nations Mission to Stabilize Haiti (MINUSTAH) troops “did not do enough” to stop cholera’s spread from the central Artibonite Valley where it emerged. As a veteran cholera-fighting Cuban doctor told Haïti Liberté when the epidemic began in October 2010: “They are doing exactly the wrong thing” by admitting cholera patients into general hospitals and clinics and not sealing off the outbreak area.

Ban’s carefully worded apology, similar to his 2014 tour of Haiti with statements citing the UN’s “moral duty” to fight cholera, seek to repair the UN’s tattered credibility and Ban’s pock-marked legacy, while avoiding any true legal liability and obligations.

“We now recognize that we had a role in this but to go to the extent of taking full responsibility for all is a step that would not be possible for us to take,” said Deputy Secretary-General Jan Eliasson.

To sweeten the deal, Ban promised (although he won’t be around) that the UN would try to raise “around $400 million over two years” to support efforts like a cholera vaccination campaign (which Haitian biologist/journalist Dady Chery condemns as “useless”) as well as “improvements in people’s access to care and treatment when sick, while also addressing the longer-term issues of water, sanitation, and health systems.” This latter step is the only way to stop the spread of cholera.

The UN’s previous anti-cholera fund drives have been singularly unsuccessful, raising only 18% of a $2.1 billion “Cholera Elimination” plan proposed for 2013-2022. As Concannon told a Dec. 2 conference call, “as hard as we fought to get those promises made, we’re going to have to fight even harder to get those promises fulfilled.”

“For six years, the UN has been saying it doesn’t have the money,” Concannon continued. “We’ve been saying that they’ve been spending between $800 million to $400 million a year for over 12 years for a ‘peacekeeping mission’ in a country which has not had a war in my lifetime… Since the cholera epidemic started, the MINUSTAH has spent over $4 billion, and we think that’s a powerful argument to make when the UN says it doesn’t have money for a cholera epidemic which they started, while they have plenty of money for a ‘grave threat against international peace’ which never existed.”

Indeed, it remains to be seen if the UN will use its new cholera-fighting promises to prolong the mandate of the highly unpopular MINUSTAH, which was originally proposed to deploy only six months in 2004. Its latest six-month extension expires in April 2016, before which the mission will undergo a “strategic assessment,” Ban said in August.

In conjunction with his Dec. 1 address, Ban released a Nov. 25 report to the General Assembly entitled “A new approach to cholera in Haiti.” In it, he referred to a 2013 UN-commissioned medical panel’s report which stated that “the exact source of introduction of cholera into Haiti will never be known with scientific certainty,” however, “the preponderance of the evidence and the weight of the circumstantial evidence does lead to the conclusion that personnel associated with the Mirebalais MINUSTAH facility were the most likely source.” This is the closest Ban ever came to an actual admission of guilt for an epidemic whose source “will never be known with scientific certainty.”

“We’re moving forward but we’re not finished,” said Jean-Charles August, a teacher from Petit-Goâve, who is one of the cholera victims represented by IJDH and its sister International Lawyers Bureau (BAI) in Haiti. “We want eradication and compensation.”

“This is more of a beginning than an end in terms of our fight,” Concannon told the conference call of lawyers, activists, and journalists. In the weeks and months ahead, the IJDH, along with the Haitian government and others, will be in negotiations with the UN for exactly how “eradication and compensation” should come about. The current Haitian UN ambassador, Jean Wesley Cazeau, applauded Ban’s “radical change of attitude” and looked forward to concrete results.

As a Dec. 5 New York Daily News editorial summed up the situation: “Up next, and urgently: a practical reckoning to undo the damage done.”

In short, only time will tell if Ban’s parting gesture reflects a genuine committment within the UN to compensate the Haitian people and eradicate cholera, or was simply a head-feint to continue the UN’s shameful record over the last 70 year, from Korea to Afghanistan to Haiti, of leaving death and destruction in countries it invades (at Washington’s behest) to supposedly help.

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UN General Assembly Recognises Health Risks from Depleted Uranium

uranium

The UN General Assembly has backed a new resolution on DU weapons by 151 votes to 4. The resolution, which highlights the ongoing concerns of affected states and communities, health experts and civil society over the potential health risks from DU exposure, is the sixth to be adopted since 2007. The text also recognises that countries affected by the use of DU weapons face considerable technical and financial barriers in dealing with DU contamination to internationally recognised radiation protection standards.

“While we welcome the fact that governments have finally acknowledged that those affected by the use of DU weapons have serious concerns over the risks they pose, we have seen little to suggest that states are willing to act,” said ICBUW Coordinator Doug Weir. “Resolutions alone will not clear land or assist communities, and it is high time that governments commit to delivering clear obligations that tackle the post-conflict legacy of DU weapons.”

Although an overwhelming majority of states vote in favour of the resolutions, a minority still abstain. Around half are EU members, all of whom have been urged to vote in favour by the European Parliament. Germany, which supported the resolutions until 2014, has been singled out for particular criticism over its efforts to weaken the resolution’s language and encourage others to abstain. Meanwhile, hopes were high this year that Canada would vote in favour for the first time. In opposition Justin Trudeau’s Liberal Party had been publicly opposed to DU weapons but this policy appears to have been quietly dropped in government.

As usual, the resolution was opposed only by the US, UK, France and Israel. Unusually, Montenegro, which voted in favour in the first round of voting in November abstained in the later plenary vote. Similarly South Sudan, which didn’t vote in November voted in the second round, abstaining for the first time. ICBUW will check to confirm that both Sudan and Montenegro’s votes were intentional.

The first round of voting on the resolution came just days after the US confirmed that it had used DU in Syria, sparking parliamentary interest in several of the countries that are part of the Operation Inherent Resolve military coalition, including Belgium, the Netherlands, New Zealand and the UK. Russia appeared to delight in the propaganda value of the disclosure, although as it has its own stocks of DU weapons, once again abstained on the resolution.

UN’s Sixth Committee debates principle on toxic remnants of war

In a move that could have ramifications for the development of post-conflict obligations for DU clearance, the toxic and hazardous remnants of war were also on agenda of the UN General Assembly’s Sixth Committee. While the DU resolution was being dealt with by the General Assembly’s First Committee, its Sixth Committee, which considers legal matters, was debating the legal principles that should govern the protection of the environment after armed conflicts.

draft principle on the management of toxic remnants of war that was proposed by the International Law Commission was backed by a number of states, although the US, Israel and the Netherlands registered objections to any attempt to expand the definition of remnants of war beyond explosive remnants of war. Two other principles, on post-conflict remedial measures and on information sharing were also on the agenda, both of which could help inform DU clearance practice in future.

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Russia, China Block UN Security Council Resolution on Aleppo Truce

NOVANEWS
Posted by: Sammi Ibrahem,Sr
 
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Russia and China have vetoed a UN Security Council resolution which would have mandated a seven-day ceasefire in Syria’s Aleppo.

On Monday, Russia stated that a truce would only permit the militants to regroup and that the subject requires further talks between Moscow and Washington.

The resolution, drafted by New Zealand, Egypt and Spain, was also blocked by Venezuela, while Angola abstained from voting with the remaining 11 members voting in its favor.

“These kinds of pauses have been used by fighters to reinforce their ammunition and to strengthen their positions and this will only worsen the suffering of civilians,” said Vitaly Churkin, Russia’s permanent envoy to the UN.

“The draft resolution contradicts the work of the Council because it was put in a late time today, and it is not possible to vote on it before tomorrow, in addition there was no consensus on this issue,” he added.

He noted the draft resolution also contradicts upcoming talks between Russian and American experts aimed at removal of all militants from eastern Aleppo.

“The draft resolution put for voting today didn’t include any talk about the exit of gunmen from the eastern neighborhoods of Aleppo, but about an immediate ceasefire, thus, it will be left ten days for the gunmen to mobilize their forces and re-organize their ranks,” he said.

Syria’s envoy to the UN Bashar al-Ja’afari said that the draft resolution had been an attempt by Western countries to support the militants in Aleppo.

He noted that the US, France and Britain, who all voted for the resolution, were turning a blind eye towards the suffering of civilians in Aleppo by supporting the terrorists.

He further vowed that the Syrian army would continue to battle the Saudi Zio-Wahhabi terrorists until they are all destroyed.

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