Saturday, August 05, 2006


Anti-Americanism Made in US

By Nicola Nasser*

Middle East Times
July 10, 2006
Acknowledgement to Media Monitors Network (MMN).

RAMALLAH -- Following a trend of voting at the United Nations, the US-led Western diplomacy twice recently used two UN forums to protect the military atrocities of the Israeli occupying power, in a 50-year-old pattern that has pre-empted peace, security and development in the whole Middle East region, with tragic and devastating effects on the Arab world in particular.
The US-led Western diplomacy in the worst cases used to veto or threaten to veto draft resolutions presented by Arab, Islamic, Non-aligned or formerly Soviet-oriented nations. Otherwise this diplomacy used to abstain or absent its ambassadors from voting sessions.
Normally and mostly such resolutions deal with the territorial expansionist military adventures or the military atrocities of the Israeli occupying power, "the" strategic ally of the US in the Middle East. Justifying their opposition, the US-led Western diplomats always claimed the draft resolutions were "not balanced."
This trend and pattern of voting discredits not only the international body, but also the US-led Western diplomacy's self-appointed role of a peace maker in the Arab-Israeli conflict. This week the US led Western diplomacy against an Arab draft resolution at the UN Security Council in New York and an Islamic draft resolution at the UN Human Rights Council (HRC) in Geneva.
On July 6 the newly constituted 47-member HRC in a special session in Geneva adopted a resolution, presented by Pakistan on behalf of the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC), to immediately dispatch a fact-finding mission to the region to investigate the Israeli actions in the Gaza Strip. The resolution called also for an immediate end to the Israeli military operations, asked Israel to abide by the provisions of international human rights laws, called for a negotiated solution to the ongoing crisis in the Middle-East, criticized Israel for the arrest of Palestinian government ministers, other officials and civilians, and authorized the HRC to immediately dispatch a fact-finding mission to the region.
The Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) in an ongoing invasion of the Gaza Strip, which was launched on June 27, reoccupied the northern Gaza Strip and parts of the east and south, including the airport, bombed the power, water, road and government infrastructure to rubble, plunged the Mediterranean coast into a humanitarian crisis and darkness, paralyzed the executive, legislative and local government, with a lot of bloodletting.
Special UN Investigator, John Dugard, presented a report to the HRC in which he accused Israel of collective punishment. The HRC resolution is non-binding. However, the US-led Western opposition has stripped it from any real weight to make it potentially applicable, thus giving Israel the diplomatic green light to carry on with its military onslaught against the Palestinian people.
The United States opposed the resolution, which was passed by a 29-11 vote. Canada, Japan and nine European countries voted against it. Israel's ambassador to the UN, Itzhak Levanon, said the "resolution isn't even-handed. It's not equitable and it's not balanced."
Why should and how could a "human rights" forum be "even-handed" between an occupying power and a people under occupation, a violator of human rights and those whose rights are violated, an overwhelmingly crushing military power and civilian population, an invading army and civilian defenders with their meagre, primitive and home-made arms, or between state and individual terrorism?
In his capacity as the diplomatic attorney for the occupying power, Levanon could not but demand "even-handedness," but how could the Western diplomatic mediators who sidelined the UN and self-appointed themselves as the peace brokers between the Palestinian and Israeli protagonists?
The US envoy Warren Tichenor, although his country is not a member of the council, delivered a statement during the debate, which called on the HRC to act "in an even-handed, fair and equitable way."
Similarly Terry Cormier, Canada's representative on the HRC, justified his country's vote against the resolution because it did not provide a balanced perspective. "This draft resolution focuses almost entirely on Israel while ignoring that party's legitimate security concerns," he said.
Japan also called the resolution "one-sided and not constructive."
Five members abstained from the vote, including Britain, France and Germany.
Pakistan's ambassador, Masood Khan, speaking on behalf of the OIC, expressed his dismay. He said he could not understand how any country could vote against the resolution in the face of the Israeli escalation and violation of human rights in the territory. "The crisis, Mr. President, is serious," he said. "A provocation does not justify disproportionate use of force against civilians and non-combatants in contravention of the Geneva Conventions."
Also on Thursday, the US and France, two permanent members of the 15-member Security Council, foiled a similar resolution presented by Arab states, represented by Qatar, to the UN Security Council demanding Israel "immediately cease its aggression against the Palestinian civilian population" and release of the democratically-elected Palestinian cabinet ministers and legislators. Both countries, who have veto power over any resolution, said the resolution was "not balanced" and would not be voted on any time soon.
It is the same old obsolete Western rhetoric justifying the old unbalanced US-led diplomacy. For more than half a century the US, which led the West after World War II, has voted against and vetoed dozens of UN Security Council resolutions, which otherwise could have solved the Arab-Israeli conflict in Palestine a long time ago and spared the instable and poor region five major wars, and billions of dollars squandered on wars.
Instead the US vetoes have pre-empted peace, motivated the Israeli expansionist military adventures, prolonged the Israeli occupation of Arab land, undermined Arab peace initiatives, embarrassed Arab friends of the US and the West, placed Arab states that had peace treaties with Israel in a difficult position vis-à-vis their peoples, exacerbated the regional insecurity and instability, and created an incubator-environment for terrorism.
Moreover, this failing diplomacy has had tragic and devastating effects on the peoples of the region, derailed regional development, and tarnished the image of the United States and its Western allies.
It is anti-Americanism made in the United States.
*Nicola Nasser is a veteran journalist in Kuwait, Jordan and Palestine and the editor of the English Website of the Palestine Media Center (PMC).

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