The UN Human Rights Council’s Latest Libel against Israel

March 15 2019

Much like its predecessor, the UN Commission on Human Rights, the Human Rights Council (UNHRC)—whose current member nations include Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and Cuba—dedicates much if not most of its time to condemning the Jewish state for imaginary crimes. Its recent report, produced by an “independent” commission of inquiry and concerning the violence along the Gaza border, is no exception. Alan Baker writes:

The commission’s legal assessment determines that the demonstrations [at the border fence] “were civilian in nature, had clearly stated political aims and, despite some acts of significant violence, did not constitute combat or a military campaign.” As such, the commission interprets the applicable legal framework to be that of law enforcement and policing, [rather than of] “combat or a military campaign.”

In making this curious assessment and determination, the commission totally ignores both the declared and documented intentions of the organizers as well as the declarations by the Hamas leadership calling upon the demonstrators to . . . charge the border fence, hurl explosive devices toward the Israeli soldiers guarding the fence, attach explosive devices to the fence, break through and infiltrate into Israeli territory, and attack and kill Israeli residents in towns and villages in the vicinity of the fence. . . .

In making their legal assessment, and in so downplaying the illegal nature of the demonstrations, the commission is, in effect, denying Israel’s sovereign right to defend its border against armed assault and to prevent illegal and violent infiltration into its sovereign territory.

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Read more at Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs

More about: Gaza Strip, Israel & Zionism, UNHRC, United Nations

War with Iran Isn’t on the Horizon. So Why All the Arguments against It?

As the U.S. has responded to Iranian provocations in the Persian Gulf, various observers in the press have argued that National Security Advisor John Bolton somehow seeks to drag President Trump into a war with Iran against his will. Matthew Continetti points out the absurdities of this argument, and its origins:

Never mind that President Trump, Vice-President Mike Pence, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Acting Secretary of Defense Patrick Shanahan, and Bolton have not said a single word about a preemptive strike, much less a full-scale war, against Iran. Never mind that the president’s reluctance for overseas intervention is well known. The “anti-war” cries are not about context, and they are certainly not about deterring Iran. Their goal is saving President Obama’s nuclear deal by manipulating Trump into firing Bolton and extending a lifeline to the regime.

It’s a storyline that originated in Iran. Toward the end of April, Iran’s Foreign Minister Javad Zarif showed up in New York and gave an interview to Reuters where he said, “I don’t think [Trump] wants war,” but “that doesn’t exclude him basically being lured into one” by Bolton. . . . And now this regime talking point is everywhere. “It’s John Bolton’s world. Trump is just living in it,” write two former Obama officials in the Los Angeles Times. “John Bolton is Donald Trump’s war whisperer,” writes Peter Bergen on CNN.com. . . .

Recall Obama’s deputy national security advisor Ben Rhodes’s admission to the New York Times Magazine in 2016 [that] “We created an echo chamber” to attack the Iran deal’s opponents through leaks and tips to the D.C. press. . . . Members of the echo chamber aren’t for attacking Iran, but they are all for slandering its American opponents. The latest target is Bolton. . . .

The Iranians are in a box. U.S. sanctions are crushing the economy, but if they leave the agreement with Europe they will be back to square one. To escape the box you try to punch your way out. That’s why Iran has assumed a threatening posture: provoking an American attack could bolster waning domestic support for the regime and divide the Western alliance.

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Read more at Washington Free Beacon

More about: Barack Obama, Iran, Javad Zarif, John Bolton, U.S. Foreign policy