An Anti-Semitic UN Commissioner Admits to Lobbying Congress and Otherwise Exceeding His Mandate

That the United Nations is institutionally hostile to the Jewish state is hardly news. Nor should it be surprising that a commission of inquiry established in the wake of the 2021 Gaza war by the UN Human Rights Council—one of the organization’s worst offenders in this regard—has devoted itself single-mindedly to compiling ill-founded accusations against Israel. But it is somewhat unexpected that a member of the commission, Miloon Kothari, declared forthrightly in an interview that he doubts whether Israel should be allowed into the United National at all, and then expressed his frustration at “social media controlled largely by . . . the Jewish lobby.” Anne Bayefsky, moreover, points to part of the interview that has received less attention:

Kothari revealed in his interview that the inquiry intends to act “well beyond just our reports,” and to that end, is now lobbying members of Congress. He made the startling admission that “we’ve had some communications even with congresspeople and senators in the United States” and that commission members were also planning to come to the United States for “about two weeks” to visit campuses and hold public meetings.

Lobbying is not in the inquiry’s UN mandate. . . . Moreover, UN commissions of inquiry on country-specific issues, like this one, are not allowed to waltz into the United States and conduct a lobbying and indoctrination tour.

But Washington has the means to retaliate, and Bayefsky urges it to:

• revoke any permission provided to members of the inquiry to travel anywhere outside the immediate vicinity of UN Headquarters and condition their entry into the United States on acting in conformity with their mandate and the UN Charter;

• withhold American taxpayer dollars from being used to support the inquiry and encourage allies to do the same;

• insist that the UN secretary-general issue a robust condemnation, and develop a plan for much stronger repercussions for relationships with the United Nations if the inquiry remains intact.

Read more at Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs

More about: Anti-Semitism, Congress, U.S. Foreign policy, UNHRC, United Nations


Israel Is Courting Saudi Arabia by Confronting Iran

Most likely, it was the Israeli Air Force that attacked eastern Syria Monday night, apparently destroying a convoy carrying Iranian weapons. Yoav Limor comments:

Israel reportedly carried out 32 attacks in Syria in 2022, and since early 2023 it has already struck 25 times in the country—at the very least. . . . The Iranian-Israeli clash stands out in the wake of the dramatic events in the region, chiefly among them is the effort to strike a normalization deal between Israel and Saudi Arabia, and later on with various other Muslim-Sunni states. Iran is trying to torpedo this process and has even publicly warned Saudi Arabia not to “gamble on a losing horse” because Israel’s demise is near. Riyadh is unlikely to heed that demand, for its own reasons.

Despite the thaw in relations between the kingdom and the Islamic Republic—including the exchange of ambassadors—the Saudis remain very suspicious of the Iranians. A strategic manifestation of that is that Riyadh is trying to forge a defense pact with the U.S.; a tactical manifestation took place this week when Saudi soccer players refused to play a match in Iran because of a bust of the former Revolutionary Guard commander Qassem Suleimani, [a master terrorist whose militias have wreaked havoc throughout the Middle East, including within Saudi borders].

Of course, Israel is trying to bring Saudi Arabia into its orbit and to create a strong common front against Iran. The attack in Syria is ostensibly unrelated to the normalization process and is meant to prevent the terrorists on Israel’s northern border from laying their hands on sophisticated arms, but it nevertheless serves as a clear reminder for Riyadh that it must not scale back its fight against the constant danger posed by Iran.

Read more at Israel Hayom

More about: Iran, Israeli Security, Saudi Arabia, Syria