Tag Archives: UN

What Has Happened To The Soul Of America?

Once upon a time people looked to America as a nation which upheld constitutional principles of due process and respect for individual rights. The Bush fiasco in Iraq has stained the soul of America because of its desire to gain victory at any cost even if it meant losing one’s soul and self respect. Philip Alston, the UN Human Rights Council’s special rapporteur on extra-judicial killings issued a report which accuses the United States of failure to properly investigate or punish crimes against human rights. According to Alston, “there has been chronic and deplorable accountability failures with respect to policies, practices and conduct that resulted in alleged unlawful killings–including possible war crimes– in the United States’ international operations.”

Among the cases cited by Alston was the death of General Abed Mowhoush, an Iraq general who was suffocated to death after his head was covered with a sleeping bag and an electrical cord wrapped around his neck. Chief Warrant Officer Lewis Welshofer who was responsible for the death was fined and reprimanded but did not serve any jail time.

America must cooperate with UN officials like Alston and get to the heart of what has been going on from the moment George Bush unleashed the dogs of torture and disrespect for law.

Democratic Iran, Land Of Peace Angry At UN

Iran regards itself as a land in which there is true democracy and people enjoy freedoms unknown in the western world. But, for some reason, other nations do not regard Iran which persecutes Bahais and Kurds as a model for democracy. Iran funds terrorist groups like Hizbullah and Hamas but is furious when other nations do not realize Iran fights for peace by engaging in war. The Iranian government warmed UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon against “double standards” after he deplored anti-Israel statements from President Ahmadinejad. Ban had deplored the Iranian’s use of the conference platform to “accuse, divide and even incite.” In the view of Iran’s UN Ambassador Mohammed Khazaee his boss can say anything he wants, incite any hate he desires and it is the duty of the UN to accept his speeches without comment. Now, if an Israeli attacked Iranian diplomats that is another issue.
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Iran has turned a conference into a circus by focusing on a single nation. It would have been impressive if Iran had confronted its own abuse of human rights and the rights of women. But, of course, if Iranians mistreat it is done in the name of God or peace.

The Price Of True Belief In Sri Lanka– Death!

The civil war that has raged in Sri Lanka over the past thirty years has been brutal and virtually nonstop. But, the war apparently is drawing to a close as government forces drive the Liberation Tigers of Tamil (LTTE) into a narrow slice of territory in the northeast part of the island. Unfortunately, along with the thousands of die-hard Tamil rebels over forty thousand refugees are stuck and unable to leave the area. The United Nations appealed to the government of Sri Lanka to work for a solution which would allow evacuation, but the people of Sri Lanka simply want an end to fighting and if more civilians die, that is just too bad. A UN representative warned if the Sri Lanka army enters the enclave, the Tamil Tigers will not allow anyone to leave and will fight to the last man which will ensure a bloodbath.

The latest reports indicate over 400 Tamil Tigers have died in recent weeks and in most cases they fought on until death rather than surrender. In the end, true believe in a cause justifies one’s death and that of innocent people.

UN Security Council Orders Investigation Of Gaza Crimes

Richard Goldstone, a Jewish judge from South Africa, has been appointed by the Security Council to conduct an investigation into alleged war crimes committed by Israel forces during their invasion of Gaza. Goldstone was a former prosecutor of war crimes in Rwanda and Yugoslavia and is respected as an honest man who seeks the truth. Israel has rejected prior demands from the Security Council for investigations about its actions. An Israel spokesperson for the Foreign Ministry, Yiga Palmor, claimed the “committee is instructed not to to seek out the truth but to signal out Israel for alleged crimes.”

The investigation should be broadly concerned with any evidence of war crimes committed by any group during the Gaza invasion. If Israel soldiers committed war crimes there must be punished just as Hamas forces should be identified if they committed war crimes.

It would help if the Security Council would also institute investigations of war crimes in areas such as Uganda or Congo.

UN Secretary General: Freeze, Halt Israel Actions!

United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon urged the Israel government to freeze further West Bank settlements, allow goods into Gaza and cease trying to take over east Jerusalem actions of driving out Muslims. He made clear to the new Israel government of Benjamin Netanyahu must “allow people and goods to move (into Gaza). It must freeze settlements, ease unilateral actions in Jerusalem and continue negotiations.” Ban expressed his delight that President Obama appears wiling to take an even-handed approach to the Middle East unlike George Bush who allowed Israel to do as it wished.

For the first time in its history, Israel has a peace initiative that is supported by most Arab nations. The key issues is whether Israel is prepared to return to 1967 borders in order to enter into a new era of peace. There is no doubt Israel hard liners can point to past failures. The fact peace attempts have failed does not mean they always will end in disaster. Just ask the people of Ireland who ended a struggle going back over a hundred years.

Human Rights –UN Style!

Within a few months there will be a UN sponsored conference to deal with issues of human rights in the world. The sixty page draft of issues to be discussed by the conference come down to one nation being the cause of human rights on planet Earth–guess which one!! Members of the United Nations Human Rights Council include such fighters for human rights and sexual equality as Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Cuba, and China. At the last such conference held in Durban, South Africa, the name of Israel was discussed 120 times and any attempt to discuss sexual issues such as dealt with by Sharia law were ruled out of order.

Perhaps, this writer has been living on another planet, but one would think the following might be issues to discuss at a conference on Human Rights:

The murder of 300,000 people in Darfur and the rape of thousands of women.

The murder of FIVE MILLION PEOPLE IN CONGO and the rape of uncounted thousands of women.

The killiing of 60,000 people in Uganda and the kidnapping of thousands of children who are forced to murder.

The death of 4,000 people in Zimbabwe of cholera as a result of the brutal policies of President Mugabe.

China’s record in Tibet.

Saudi Arabia’s record on dealing with gays and lesbians.

Pakistan’s record on dealing with equal rights for women.

Iran’s stoning to death of women, imprisoning human rights activists, etc…

There is only one way to handle this travesty of justice and human rights –boycott the darn meeting. It is simply an opportunity for people like Cubans who imprison gays to denounce Israel.

My question is: If Israel did not exist, would they even hold such a conference? If they did, what would they discuss?

Bush Organized Torture System Says UN Leader!

Dr. Martin Scheinin, United Nations Rappoteur on the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms identified the United States along with other nations which have created a system based on secret prisons, torture and other activities that result in violation of human rights. He states quite frankly the so-called war on terrorism has been used to cover up abuse of humans and the use of torture in order to elicit confessions. He has evidence that employees of the United States, Australia and the United Kingdom personally interrogated detainees who had ben tortured by the Pakistan intelligence service. He also cites the Tony Blair government for cooperating with the torture of individuals. “I am trying here, on the basis of the law, to indicate that there cannot be a very big difference between torturing and looking on while others torture.”

Dr. Scheinin charges that nations which took part in the infamous “war on terror” engaged in the very practices they were charging the enemy utilized. A real question emerging from his study is the question of who gave “the actual operative orders.” Are you reading this Bush/Cheney/Rumsfeld? The three stooges are guilty of crimes against humanity!

Trip To Burma-Trip To Oz

A visit by a United Nations official to investigate the level of human rights in Burma is akin to taking a trip to the land of Oz in search of reality. Sometimes, the military thugs who run Myanmar actually allow visitors to inspect the presence of what people in other parts of the world term, “human rights” but to the military clique, human rights means, they have rights and other humans have the right to agree with their version of rights. Tomas Ojea Quintana is in Burma, and he is talking to a few people, but the leaders of the nation simply don’t understand that when one talks with people, they have the right to disagree so their solution is not to talk with anyone from the UN or any of those nasty organizations which throw around words like “rights.”

Reality is that leaders of the National League for Democracy which won the last free election are currently under house arrest or in prison. UN officials can come and go but there will not be any changes in current approaches to human rights.

Mugabe Relents And Will Talk With UN

President Robert Mugabe presides over a nation that has completely collapsed with an unemployment rate of 90% and an inflation rate that is over 200,000,000$%. His political opponent Mogan Tsvangirai agreed to join the coalition government even though he understands that Mugabe is not going to share power and only wants him around to serve as a convenient scapegoat. However, Mugabe finally did allow a United Nations team to visit his nation and make a report about how humanitarian aid can be gotten into the country without having Mugabe henchmen siphon off large amounts for their own purposes.

UN Chief Ban Ki-moon emphasized to Mugabe he could not continue receiving aid with one hand and imprisoning opponents with the other because such behavior will eventually lead to a cut off in assistance. The reality is as of this point, there is scant evidence Mugabe is willing to surrender any power to his opponents. As far as the Mugabe clique are concerned, the word “humanitarian” refers to themselves not to the people of Zimbabwe.

Death And Destruction In Uganda-Anyone Care?

During the past decade the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) has carved a path of death and destruction through the nation of Uganda including kidnapping thousands of children and making them soldiers in an army that frequently as part of an initiation ceremony compels children to kill their own parents. The Uganda government reports the LRA has murdered 537 people and kidnapped 408 others in their latest violent attacks. About 104,000 people have been forced to flee for their lives. Ron Redmond, the UN Commissioner for Refugees, says, “amy f these internally displaced people are still hiding in the bush” fearing the LRA will either kill them or take their children.

There are no reports of mass demonstrations in any European, Middle Eastern or Asian city over the mass slaughter of Ugandans. One can only assume their deaths don’t rate the 6:00 p.m. news. I wonder why?s