Obama’s contempt for international standards
The National Security Strategy of the Obama administration says: “if nations challenge or undermine an international order that is based upon rights and responsibilities, they must find themselves isolated.”
Israel is currently resisting international pressure to accept an international investigation into the circumstances in which at least nine Turkish civilians were killed by Israeli soldiers on board the Mavi Marmara while the ship was in international waters moving away from Israel.
The UN Security Council, under pressure from the Obama administration, watered down a call for an international investigation into the massacre by saying that such an inquiry should merely meet “international standards.”
When team Obama came up with that phrase — as they surely did — did they first consult with George Bush’s former ambassador to the UN, John Bolton? It’s his kind of language. It cynically gives a passing nod to the idea that an inquiry needs international legitimacy, yet leaves it to Israel — a state that views the international community with contempt — to determine how that requirement might be met.
The answer, as far a Benjamin Netanyahu is concerned, is to toss in a couple of international figures who can observe the workings of the Israeli commission — a three-man body whose members have an average age of 85.
One of the two internationals is David Trimble, former First Minister of Northern Ireland. Are his the eyes that can ensure this commission conducts “a prompt, impartial, credible and transparent investigation”?
On the day of the Israeli assault, the Jerusalem Post reported on the launch of the “Friends of Israel Initiative,” a new project in defense of Israel’s right to exist, led by Spain’s former prime minister Jose Maria Aznar. This group of international leaders includes none other than, David Trimble.
The initiative is being launched now, its sponsors said in a statement, because of their outrage and concern about the “unprecedented delegitimation campaign against Israel, driven by the enemies of the Jewish state and perversely assumed by numerous international authorities.”
So will a commission in which there is an international observer with a declared suspicion of international organizations, meet “international standards”?
The White House calls this “an important step forward” and says:
We believe that Israel, like any other nation, should be allowed to undertake an investigation into events that involve its national security. Israel has a military justice system that meets international standards and is capable of conducting a serious and credible investigation, and the structure and terms of reference of Israel’s proposed independent public commission can meet the standard of a prompt, impartial, credible, and transparent investigation.
Credible perhaps to an American president who serves at the pleasure of the Israel lobby, but on this matter Obama doesn’t even have the support of the New York Times.
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Zafar Bangash analyzes the US-Turkey “no fly zone” over parts of Syria, the Saudi attacks against Yemen and the Iran reality.
Turkey/US no fly zone over Syria: Opening landing and take-off facilities close to the Syrian border for US aircraft is a unilateral action without the permission of the Syrian government. It is a violation of international law, an act of aggression violating the integrity of another state.
Bangash paints a very clear picture: If Turkey is digging a grave for Syria, the Turkish government and state are likely to fall into that hole itself.
Yemen: The Saudi continue merciless attacks against the Yemeni civilians –thousands have been killed, 12 million are food deficient and 16 million (over half of the population) do not have access to food and water. The Yemeni are seething with anger and will not let these kinds of attacks go unpunished. The Yemeni are not people to mess with. They never forgive nor forget.
Iran: The negotiated agreement with the Five plus one is a non-issue. The Iranians will continue to enrich uranium with no intent to create a bomb. It is the Americans who were up against the wall, as they finally had to realize that the sanctions were not working but were isolating the US. Iran weathered the sanctions well and has a booming economy. Iran is needed to solve the regional problems.
From the Archives
By Ghada Karmi | July, 2004
When the Zionists decided in 1897 to establish a Jewish state in Palestine, the Jews of Vienna dispatched a delegation to examine the country for its suitability. The delegation reported back as follows: “the bride is beautiful but she is married to another man”. They had found that Palestine to their dismay was already inhabited by another people. And this has been Zionism’s central problem ever since. How to “vanish the Palestinians” and get an empty land? The latest manifestation of this imperative is the barrier wall, which Israel is currently building to separate and enclose Palestinian towns and villages in the lands it occupied after 1967. There are those who rightly point to the wall’s illegality and infringement of human rights. And the International Court of Justice has just affirmed this view resoundingly in its ruling, passed on 9.7.04 by 14 of the 15 judges, that the wall was an illegal structure when in the occupied Palestinian territories and that Israel would have to tear it down and make restitution for the damage it has caused to thousands of Palestinians. This position is entirely valid, but critics, in my view, have missed one crucial aspect of the wall’s purpose, which is, to “vanish” the Palestinians, to make them so invisible that Israelis can go on pretending that there is no “other man”. … continue
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This article will examine some of the connections between the US and UK National Security apparatus and the appearance of the anthropogenic global warming (AGW) theory beginning after the accident at Three Mile Island. … continue
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