Following up on my previous post on the UN Human Rights Council, it is worth noting that the top republican on the House Foreign Affairs Committee Ileana Ros-Lehtinen misrepresents the most recent session when she suggests that Israel–and only Israel– came up for criticism during its most recent meeting. Here is part of a statement her office sent out via email last week.
“Stop the madness. Time for the U.S. to pull out of the UN Human Rights Council.
“This week’s barrage of anti-Israel, anti-freedom resolutions shows that U.S. participation on the Council has been unable to make the Council any less reprehensible.
“One resolution called on Israel to provide ‘reparations’ to the Palestinians in connection with Operation Cast Lead. It is insanity. Israel defended itself and its people against incessant rocket attacks from Gaza during Operation Cast Lead; the UN has done nothing to hold Palestinians accountable; but now the U.N. calls on Israel to made amends?
“Other anti-Israel measures ranged from one implicitly endorsing the ‘Goldstone Report,’ to another establishing a permanent committee to monitor compliance with one of the Report’s recommendations.
“Predictably, there were no resolutions or special sessions criticizing human rights abuses by Iran, Syria, Sudan, Cuba or other brutal regimes.” [emphasis mine]
In fact, the council *passed* resolutions on North Korea,Myanmar, The Democratic Republic of the Congo and Guinea. Do those places not count as “brutal?” To be sure, the number of Israel-specific resolutions were a concern to the United States, but I remain convinced that the United States is much better placed to advance its interests by participating, rather than hurling criticisms from the sidelines.