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  KD MAGAZINE!   
 
 
  Article posted on: August 29, 2005  
 

AN UNFULFILLED CHARTER

Rabbi Shea Hecht
About the Author
 

On June 26, 1945 the United Nations charter was signed by a US representative. According to the charter the UN was set up to "...save succeeding generations from war... to reaffirm faith in fundamental human rights...in the equal rights...of nations large and small...to practice tolerance...to maintain international peace and security..."
 
When the UN was set up the peoples of the world must have been duly moved. What an impressive charter! What incredible goals! What hope everyone must have had for a peaceful future. Imagine! An international organization meant to keep the peace, one which learned from the mistakes of the League of Nations - its predecessor.
 
Though it had great potential, the UN has proven to be a disappointing, bureaucratic, conglomeration of nations driven by hatred and politicking. It is hard to remember when the UN last took a leadership position in global politics that resulted in peaceful co-existence among nations. It's true that the UN does sponsor worthwhile programs that have positive impact  in many parts of the world, such as UNICEF and the UNAIDS programs, however any nation or private organization can accomplish the same, probably for a lot less money. Why spend money funding a whole bureaucracy to do that?
 
Just in regard to tiny beleaguered Israel, it is clear that the UN has strayed far from its original intent. In October 2000, three Israeli soldiers were kidnapped and killed at the Lebanese border right under the noses of the UN "peace keepers." There were signs that the UN peace keepers were not just witnesses but actual participants in this heinous crime. There was video footage that would have helped the Israelis identify the Lebanese kidnappers which the UN said they can't release because they are ‘an international body and they can't play a role in transferring intelligence information to either party'. Interestingly enough in the partial video footage Israel did get, the car that was used for the kidnapping had UN license plates - which (of course) the UN said were forged. The UN also sponsors schools and textbooks in the PA. These teach hatred and violence towards Israel to the children who learn in those schools - making them ready fodder for the extremists who seek to turn them into human bombs. The UN knows what these schools teach and choose to ignore it.
 
Recent reports say that the UN has paid for the production of thousands of banners, bumper stickers, mugs and T-shirts bearing the slogan ‘Today Gaza and Tomorrow the West Bank and Jerusalem.' In addition to the explosive slogan many of these items, which have been distributed to the Palestinian Arabs in the Gaza Strip, displayed the logo of the United Nations Development Program.
 
The UN support of the Palestinian Authority's propaganda has provoked outrage from many, who are blaming the UN for dispersing the inflammatory message they say encourages Palestinian Arab violence.  The Arabic slogan, which refers to disputed territories of the West Bank and East Jerusalem, has served as the Palestinian Arab effort to spin the withdrawal as victory.
 
I have a problem with the fact that the UN seems to be an independent world government without any overseer. They do things that affect many different countries and they do whatever they please just because they are the "UN" - which according to its charter should remain neutral in global disputes. The Middle Eastern conflict has lasted too many years and will not be solved by some biased and unchecked world body.
 
The United State's new ambassador to the UN, John Bolton, has labeled the actions of the UN "inappropriate and unacceptable." Mr. Bolton said that the UN has failed to explain why it gave money to the PA for the production of these items with the provocative slogans. Mr. Bolton told the UN that the most serious problem for his office was not the fact that the logo was printed on the material, but the fact that the agency used their money to support this divisive message. I applaud President Bush for having the courage to appoint a man with these moral credentials to represent our country at the UN.
 
The actions of the UN over the years show us that this is not an isolated case, but rather demonstrates what the UN is all about. Though the UN has agreed to stop paying for the anti-Israel propaganda, their track record for biased actions make me wonder what else they have up their sleeve that we just don't know about yet. Actually, the USA would do everybody a favor, especially the people who live in NYC, if they get rid of the entire UN complex and put up affordable housing instead.

Read more articles by Rabbi Hecht

 

 
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