National Security & Defense

The U.N. Sinks Further into the Anti-Israeli Muck

United Nations special rapporteur Richard Falk in March 2014 (Fabrice Coffrini/AFP/Getty)

It may seem hard to believe that the United Nations can hold any new surprises when it comes to unprincipled attacks on Israel, but never despair: There is always farther to fall.

For more than 20 years, the U.N. Human Rights Council has had a dedicated “Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian territories occupied since 1967.” (Needless to say, there’s no U.N. Special Rapporteur for the condition of Tibetans or Cubans; only Palestinians.) Now, the incumbent Israel-Hater-in-Chief is leaving and his replacement must be chosen.

This being the U.N., what kind of candidate will they choose? Be careful, now: The position’s entire purpose is to condemn Israel, so it’s important to disqualify anyone who might examine the evidence in an unbiased search for truth. Heaven forfend. Much better to choose someone whose anti-Israel bias is absolute.

And this being the U.N., that’s what they’re doing.

There are two top candidates, both worthy successors to Richard Falk, who served in the post from 2008 to 2014. Falk was the nut-case Princeton professor who wanted U.S. officials prosecuted as war criminals for deposing Saddam Hussein, and once said, “Is it an irresponsible overstatement to associate the treatment of Palestinians with this criminalized Nazi record of collective atrocity? I think not.” You can see why the U.N. chose him.

Anyway, back to the current candidates. Ranked second for the Special Rapporteur job is a Canadian named Michael Lynk. Who is Lynk? The invaluable U.N. Watch notes: “Lynk . . . promotes an extreme anti-Western political agenda. Three days after the 9/11 terrorist attacks, Lynk instinctively blamed the West, pointing the finger at ‘global inequalities’ and ‘disregard by Western nations for the international rule of law.’” Needless to say, this political stance means he hates Israel. As UN Watch reports:

Lynk plays a leadership role in numerous Arab lobby groups, including CEPAL, which promotes “Annual Israeli Apartheid Week” events; signs anti-Israel petitions; calls to prosecute Israel for alleged war crimes; addresses “One State” conferences that seek to eliminate Israel; and argues that “the solution” to “the problem” must go back to Israel’s very creation in 1948, which he calls “the start of ethnic cleansing.”

You might think, “Wow, he’s perfect for the U.N.!” But no, he’s only ranked second, under the top candidate, Penny Green. Who is Green? She’s a British criminologist whose hatred of Israel is even more blatant. She has urged that the U.K. de-list Hamas as a terrorist group. U.N. Watch reports that she “advocates the total boycott of Israel, posting statements on Twitter such as: ‘Support BDS against Israel – best way to resist this criminal government’; ‘Academics should now systematically refuse any invitations to visit Israeli universities or attend conferences there’; ‘the West must impose sanctions against, boycott and divest from Israel.’”

The Human Rights Council’s Vetting Committee deemed both Lynk and Green to be impartial and put them forward as the two best candidates for the job.

In doing so, the committee bypassed eight other applicants, some of whom have never expressed any view about Israeli–​Palestinian affairs, and some whom even appear to be actually impartial as that term is commonly understood. The ultimate decision now rests with South Korean ambassador Choi Kyong-lim, the Human Right’s Council’s chairman, who could reject Lynk and Green in favor of one of the other applicants if he so chooses.

#share#Will he? We’ll find out on March 24, at the end of the council’s current session. Not to worry, though: Even if the U.N. chooses Lynk or Green, Israel will never let either of them set foot in “the Palestinian territories occupied since 1967.” Israel never let Falk or his successor set foot there, either. But the game goes on in Geneva. President Bush would not permit the United States to join the Council; Obama reversed him and leapt for a seat at the table. Today, the U.N. has entrusted the defense of global human rights to representatives from China, Cuba, Vietnam, Russia, and Saudi Arabia, among other liberal bastions.

Here’s hoping a Republican president keeps us as far away from this wretched sham as possible starting in 2017.

Elliott Abrams is a senior fellow in Middle Eastern Studies at the Council on Foreign Relations and a former deputy national-security adviser.

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