Commentary and Newsletters

Anne Bayefsky

The End of the 2006 UN General Assembly: Annan's Legacy, Moon's Millstone

Friday, December 29, 2006

Kofi Annan had a pet peeve Israel. If only Israel would do this or that, terrorism would end, peace would come to the Middle East, harmony would reverberate around the world, and the reasons for hating the rest of us would wither away. It was, and is, a lie that has served the world's worst human rights violators well, allowing them to escape scrutiny since the UN is otherwise occupied.

It therefore comes as no surprise to learn of the tally of condemnations coming from the General Assembly during the fall of 2006:

  • Resolutions condemning Israel for human rights violations: 25
  • Number of anti-Israel resolutions which are new this year: 4 (from the regular session) + 2 (from emergency sessions)
  • Resolutions condemning human rights violations in any other state: 4 from the General Assembly's Third or main human rights committee directed at Myanmar/Burma, Democratic Republic of Korea, Iran, Belarus
How about Sudan? Nothing. Syria? Zip. China? Nope. Saudi Arabia? Zilch. And so on.
  • Number of 61st General Assembly resolutions mentioning, let alone condemning, human rights violations by Hamas, Hezbollah and Islamic Jihad: you guessed it zero.

In case you're wondering what the new year and the new Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon might bring, here is what he told the New York Sun this week:

    Mr. Ban said the Middle East "by far" raises "the most important, or sensitive and complex, issues which the international community has not been able to resolve for the last six decades," adding that at the "core" of the dispute is the "Israeli-Palestinian relations."

In the blink of an eye, the new Secretary-General has in effect decided that if only Israel would do this or that, Middle East peace would be upon us -- ignoring the history of rejectionism of a Jewish state, the terrorist legacy of those rejectionists, and their racist motivations. These war-mongers have one thing in common a hate for democracy, freedom and equality.

An inauspicious start for a new Moon.