The State Department Announces

The New York Post is reporting today that the State Department has announced that America with be withdrawing from UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) because of UNESCO’s anti-Israel bias. This is long overdue.

In June 2012, I posted an article illustrating how some of UNESCO’s money is spent. The article featured a cartoon teaching Palestinian children that Jews are killing them. That is not a recipe for peace.

The article at the New York Post concludes:

But the Israel-Palestinian issue has been a major point of contention.

Last year, Israel removed its UNESCO ambassador after the agnecy stated that one of Jerusalem’s holy sites is specifically a “Muslim holy site of worship,” according to Reuters.

Senior American officials, including UN Ambassador Nikki Haley, have repeatedly denounced UNESCO, which the US also withdrew from during the Cold War under then-President Reagan.

Washington, which viewed the agency as mismanaged and used for political reasons, rejoined it in 2003.

Until the people who now live in the Gaza Strip do something other than to send rockets into Israel, I see no reason to recognize Palestine as a nation. The world does not need another terrorist state. In recent years we have seen rockets from the Gaza Strip aimed at civilian targets in Israel and tunnels dug to facilitate attacks on Israeli children. Western countries have funded these activities in the name of humanitarian aid. Unfortunately, very little of the humanitarian aid has gone to humans–it has been used to buy weapons and create tunnels to attack Israel. If the United Nations continues to support these activities, we will have no choice but to withdraw from the United Nations completely.

The United Nations Needs A History Lesson

Yesterday John Hinderaker at Power Line posted a story about a proposed UNESCO resolution regarding Israel. The resolution is further evidence that the United Nations has lost its way as a peace-keeping organization and has become an outlet for antisemitism around the world.

The article reports:

The United Nation Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) passed a draft resolution on Thursday that failed to acknowledge the Jewish people’s ties to the Temple Mount, raising ire in Israel.

The proposal “strongly condemns the Israeli escalating aggressions and illegal measures against the Waqf Department and its personnel, and against the freedom of worship and Muslims’ access to their Holy Site Al-Aqsa Mosque/Al-Haram Al Sharif, and requests Israel, the Occupying Power, to respect the historic Status Quo and to immediately stop these measures.”

It omits the Jewish name for the holy site—the Temple Mount—and instead refers to it only by its Muslim name—Al-Haram Al Sharif.

One of the things that happened after the 1967 war was that Israel allowed religious people access to their religious sites. Under Muslim rule, that does not happen–Christian churches and Jewish synagogues are destroyed when Muslims control a country along with historic artifacts.

Currently, one of the strongest voting blocs in the United Nations is the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation. This bloc is made up of a number of nations that support a worldwide caliphate, Sharia Law, and the destruction of Israel. As long as this bloc is a major player, the United Nations cannot function as an organization working toward world peace.

The article at Power Line includes some of the history of Jerusalem:

David conquered the Jebusites and captured Jerusalem 3,000 years ago. Jerusalem has been the center of Jewish life and worship ever since. Herod the Great raised the Second Temple, where Jesus taught and, according to the Gospels, drove out the money-changers. Jesus was arrested, tried and executed in Jerusalem. The Romans destroyed the Second Temple following the Jewish rebellion not long thereafter. Jews have lived in Jerusalem, and sought to return there from around the world, for millennia. Muslims arrived in the area roughly 1,600 years after the Jews, on the most charitable interpretation of history.

Temple Mount is exactly that–the site of the Second Temple, for sure, and perhaps, as tradition records, the location of Solomon’s temple and, long before that, the place where Abraham almost sacrificed Isaac. To suggest that Temple Mount has no historical connection to the Jewish people, and the modern state of Israel, is ridiculous–precisely the sort of absurdism that international leftists, and especially Arabs, engage in. It would be like claiming that Washington, D.C. has no connection to the American people, only worse, by 2,750 years or so.

The Israeli government has gone to the length of issuing a publication detailing the millennia-long relationship between the Jewish people and the Promised Land. I admire the Israelis’ patience, but in their shoes, I think I would tell the lunatics–the UNESCO resolution was sponsored by Algeria, Egypt, Lebanon, Morocco, Oman, Qatar and Sudan, and supported by any number of Europeans–to get stuffed.

It is truly time for the United States to leave the United Nations and to evict them from their New York City headquarters. One of my daughters suggested that they might leave voluntarily if we forced them to pay all of the diplomats’ parking tickets. I think that is a really good idea.

Ignoring History When It Interferes With Your Politics

Breitbart.com posted an article today about the UNESCO exhibition that was scheduled to open in Paris on January 20. The exhibition has been cancelled because documents the Jews’ 3,500+ years connection to the Land of Israel, chronicling the timeline from the days of Abraham to the 21st century.

The article reports:

UNESCO cancelled the event, while not disputing the factual basis whatsoever behind the exhibit itself, for fear it may hurt the “peace process.” The event, which had been planned for over two years, was cancelled three days before it was set to open. The successful campaign mounted to cancel the expo can largely be accredited to a last minute protest by the Arab group at UNESCO.

The protest doesn’t change history. The problem with the exhibit is that it reminds people of the history of Israel. The connection between the Jews and Israel goes back thousands of years. The Palestinians did not exist as a people seeking a homeland until after 1967. As Walid Shoebat stated, “One day during the 1960s I went to bed a Jordanian Muslim, and when I woke up the next morning, I was informed that I was now a Palestinian Muslim, and that I was no longer a Jordanian Muslim.”

The article at Breitbart.com reminds us:

The UN has maintained its heavy biases against the State of Israel for many years. Some argue that it has become the sole focus of the entire United Nations system: to engage in a delegitimization campaign against the Jewish state. Israel’s envoy to UNESCO, Nimrod Barkan, once stated that UNESCO has an “obsession” with Israel. In October, UNESCO left a single meeting in Paris declaring it had passed six separate resolutions condemning tiny Israel, but none regarding the rest of the world in its entirety.

According to UN Watch, an incredible 100 percent of UNESCO’s condemnatory resolutions have been in opposition to Israel.

The United Nations may have begun with a beautiful idea–world peace and freedom for all the citizens of the world. Unfortunately, a number of countries that do not support democracy have banned together to form a very influential voting bloc within the organization and have caused the United Nations to stray from its original mission. Rather than condemn terrorist regimes and tyrannies, the organization has focused its condemnation on Israel. It really is time for the United Nations to leave America and go elsewhere. The improvement in the traffic situation in lower Manhattan alone would be astonishing.

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A Historical Site Has Been Endangered By The United Nations

It isn’t news to anyone that some adherents of the Muslim religion do not have a lot of respect for the traditions and practice of other religions. In March 2001, the Taliban dynamited and destroyed the Buddhas of Bamiyan in Afghanistan on orders from leader Mullah Mohammed Omar.

Wikipedia reports:

The smaller of the statues was built between 544 and 595, the larger was built between 591 and 644.[9] They are believed to have been built by the Kushans, with the guidance of local Buddhist monks, at the heyday of their empire. The larger figure was also said to portray Dīpankara Buddha. They were perhaps the most famous cultural landmarks of the region, and the site was listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site along with the surrounding cultural landscape and archaeological remains of the Bamiyan Valley.

Note that the site was listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site. Well, on Thursday, the Daily Caller reported that UNESCO is placing the Church of the Nativity on the list of World Heritage in Danger sites. It will be placed under the internationally sanctioned administration of the Palestinian Authority (PA) (a group dominated by Fatah.

Does anyone remember how Fatah treated the Church of the Nativity in 2002?

The Daily Caller article reminds us:

…the future of the church is now at risk.

That’s because the responsibility for the caretaking of this site has now been entrusted to the Fatah-dominated Palestinian Authority, which has not proven itself worthy of such responsibility. Fatah has been, since its founding in 1964, complicit in the harassment, persecution, assassination, imprisonment and expulsion of Christians from Palestine. In fact, it was Fatah gunmen who commandeered the church, held monks hostage within its walls and wired it with explosives in 2002 during a standoff with the Israel Defense Forces. Where was the respect for this holy site then? Who can guarantee that respect exists today? The international community has turned to the United Nations and specifically to UNESCO.

Christianity does not depend on the existence of the Church of the Nativity. The mistreatment of that church will not greatly impact what Christian people believe. It will, however, show, beyond a shadow of doubt, what the PA is made of. I truly do not see a lot of difference between the past behavior of Fatah toward the Church of the Nativity and the behavior of the Taliban toward the Buddhas of Bamiyan in Afghanistan.

If this is the best that the UN can do to take care of an important part of the heritage of Christianity, they need to be relived of their responsibilities.

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Under The Radar In UNESCO Funding

Scott Johnson at Power Line posted an article today about John Bolton’s book Surrender Is Not An Option: Defending America at the United Nations and Abroad. In the book, John Bolton tells the story of the PLO’s efforts to be recognized by the United Nations without negotiating with Israel.

The article reports:

In early 1989, Bolton writes, the PLO had launched a major effort to join several specialized UN agencies in the UN system. — “yet another example of the PLO’s perennial strategy to improve its position vis-a-vis Israel by doing anything other than negotiating directly with the Israelis.” The PLO membership campaign followed from the PLO’s 1988 decision to change its name card at the UN from “Palestine Liberation Organization” to “Palestine” — “apparently under the theory that if you sound more like a country than an organization, people will treat you more like a country.”

The next logical step, Bolton reports, was to have “Palestine” become a member of the various UN agencies, thus further attesting to its status as a “state” in international circles in that membership in the organizations is limited to states. How could the United States effectively opposed the PLO’s charade given the PLO’s wide support at the UN?

The first targets of the PLO were the World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). The United States countered that move by telling the WHO that the United States would withhold funding if Palestine was admitted. We had already withdrawn from UNESCO, but stated that we would not rejoin if Palestine was admitted. In 1990, Congress passed a law requiring the termination of United States funding of any international organization that recognizes Palestinian statehood in the absence of a peace agreement with Israel.

Based on that law, we withdrew funding of UNESCO last year when Palestine was admitted. Unfortunately, President Obama has overturned that withdrawal.  The article reports:

But that’s not the end of the story. JTA reports: “The Obama administration formally announced its intention to ask Congress to waive a ban on funding UNESCO over its recognition of Palestinian statehood.”

And that’s not all! The Obama administration courageously buried announcement of its intention in a footnote to the budget that the White House submitted to Congress this month.

Will Congress restore funding? That’s not entirely clear, but not if Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen has anything to do with it. “Any effort to walk back this funding cutoff will pave the way for the Palestinian leadership’s unilateral statehood scheme to drive on, and sends a disastrous message that the U.S. will fund UN bodies no matter what irresponsible decisions they make,” she said in a statement. The Bolton spirit lives on, if not in the Obama administration.

The President needs to follow the law as it was passed in 1990.

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Let’s Unfund The United Nations

CNSNews reported today that UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) has decided to reappoint Syria to a committee dealing with human rights. The United States declared a funding freeze on UNESCO after they recently admitted  “Palestine” to the agency.

The article reports:

Syrian President Bashar Assad’s regime was recently reappointed to the Committee on Conventions and Recommendations, a subsidiary body of the U.N. Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization’s executive board.

The 29-member committee, which meets twice a year, is tasked to examine often sensitive communications received from individuals or organizations relating to human rights violations within UNESCO’s field of competence – that is, in education, science, culture and communication (including freedom of opinion and expression.)

Other members of the committee in 2010-2011 include Algeria, Belarus, China, Cuba, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Tunisia and Venezuela. Not exactly a group known for its support of civil liberties.

The article also reported:

The U.S. accounts for 22 percent of UNESCO’s operating budget and also makes voluntary contributions. The enforced funding cut saves U.S. taxpayers more than $80 million a year.

The United Nations does not even agree with itself on the issue of Syria. The article reports:

But Syria’s return to the committee is particularly controversial at a time when Damascus is under fire for a violent response to anti-government protests that has killed more than 3,500 people. (A U.N. General Assembly committee on Tuesday passed a draft resolution by a 122-13 vote condemning Assad for the crackdown.)

It really is time for the United States to withdraw itself and its support from the United Nations. The organization began with good intentions, but now has become a place where tyrants rule.

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An Open Microphone Is A Dangerous Thing

The Likud Party led by Benjamin Netanyahu wins...

Image via Wikipedia

Most of the mainstream American press has not yet covered this story. It will be interesting to see if they do. YNet News posted a story yesterday about a microphone left on after the G20 meeting that picked up a conversation between President Obama and Nicolas Sarkozy. The article reported:

The conversation apparently began with President Obama criticizing Sarkozy for not having warned him that France would be voting in favor of the Palestinian membership bid in UNESCO despite Washington’s strong objection to the move. 

The conversation then drifted to Netanyahu, at which time Sarkozy declared: “I cannot stand him. He is a liar.” According to the report, Obama replied: “You’re fed up with him, but I have to deal with him every day!” 

There goes the Jewish vote!

I don’t know much about Netanyahu. I know that he loves Israel and is doing his best to preserve it. I know that he lost his brother in the Entebbe Raid to free Israeli hostages. I know that he was treated very badly when he visited the White House in March 2010. I don’t know what President Obama has against Israel, but he obviously is not a supporter of the country.

 

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More Shenanigans At The United Nations

Interior of the Church of the Nativity

Image via Wikipedia

Yesterday Fox News reported that the United States will not be contributing to The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) because the organization has accepted the Palestinian mission as a full member.

CBN News reported:

The 107 to 14 vote, with 52 abstentions, easily fulfilled the 81-vote requirement granting full membership status to the P.A. The U.S., Canada and Germany were among the countries voting against the bid, while Russia, China, France, India, South Africa and Brazil were among those voting in favor.

The article at Fox News reports:

Washington is required by law to cut off funding to any U.N. agency if the Palestinian Liberation Organization is granted membership in any group at the international body.

There is more to this story. The Palestinians are seeking to use the United Nations as a vehicle to obtaining a state without making peace with Israel. CBN News reported in February:

The Palestinian Authority has asked the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, or UNESCO, to designate the Church of the Nativity, the Bethlehem church built on the traditional site of Jesus Christ’s birth, as a world heritage site.

“One of the most significant sites of universal importance to humanity is the Old Town of Bethlehem and the birthplace of Jesus,” chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erakat said Tuesday in an e-mailed statement. “Palestinians long to share our patrimony with the world.”

No sites under Palestinian Authority control are on the U.N.’s list because Palestinians do not have a state recognized by the U.N. 

At this point I would like to remind everyone about the way Palestinian militants treated the Church of the Nativity when they took it over in 2002. There was a Reuters article on this posted on May 10, 2002, but somehow the link is currently not working. I would also like to remind everyone that when the Arabs controlled the Old City of Jerusalem, Christians and Jews did not have access to their religious sites.

Until the Palestinians recognize the right of Israel to exists, and treat all historical sites in their lands with respect, I see no reason to give them statehood.

 CBN News reported on October 10, 2011:

Taha said UNESCO membership would “allow Palestine to actively participate in protecting cultural heritage in the Palestinian territories,” Reuters reported.

That has not been the case with Joseph’s Tomb, another Jewish holy site, near Shechem, which has been desecrated repeatedly over the years.

Over the weekend, Israeli soldiers preparing the site for Israelis planning to visit during Yom Kippur found swastikas painted on the walls.

In April, a Palestinian policemen opened fire on Israeli passengers driving away from the site, killing Ben Yosef Chai, 24, nephew of Likud Minister Limor Livnat, and wounding four others.

I don’t think the United Nations is ignorant of the history and ideals of the Palestinian Authority–I just think that the United Nations has been taken over by the Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC), which seeks to set up a world-wide caliphate. The countries that truly support freedom and freedom of religion need to leave the United Nations as soon as possible and begin an organization of democracies that support freedom–the United Nations does not currently support freedom.
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