The latest bit of news to emerge from the UN Human Rights council is that Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, has been issuing tweets in which he made some truly bizarre claims.
What exactly is this economic “Urgent Threat” that he is babbling about, and in what way exactly is free-market economics within the scope of the UN’s Human Rights commissioner?
Not too long after that weird tweet he then delivered a speech in which he proceeds to claim that Donald Trump, Nigel Farage, and others (he named them explicitly) share the same tactics as ISIS. I might not agree with the politics nor even the integrity or honesty of either Mr Trump or Mr Franage, but I really do not recall there being any news about either of them chopping off the heads or burning alive their political opponents. Did I miss something? OK, I’m being slightly unfair, because he did clarify that even if they all supposedly used the same tactics, they did not use the same methods.
The primary issue here is not that Mr al-Hussein himself embraces this view, nor that he used his own account on twitter to issue bizarre statements, but that he tweeted using the official UN Human Rights twitter account to its 1.5 million followers as if this “urgent threat” was the official position of the UN’s Human Rights council (UNHRC), and then proceeded to give an official speech in which he made these claims.
As has been quite rightly pointed out by some …
While millions of people are suffering from genocide, sexual slavery and starvation, it is far from clear why the UN would instead focus its attention on unidentifiable ‘urgent threats’, let alone on economic subjects about which it has neither competence nor expertise.”
Mr Neuer pointed out that socialist economics had brought misery to Venezuela without drawing similar criticism from the UN. “The same UN human rights office has failed to issue a single tweet about this past month’s dire human rights crisis in Venezuela, where millions face mass hunger in part due to attacks on the free market,”
The problem with UNHRC is not just one individual
This is simply a manifestation of an on-going and ever abiding issue with the UNHRC.
Since 2006 when the UNHRC was officially “Improved”, we have observed the following rather skewed statistic ..
- 67 resolutions have been issued against Israel
- 61 resolutions have been issued against the rest of the entire planet
Has Israel truly earned 67 resolutions?
If an even hand was being applied universally, then there would be no concerns, but instead when it comes to the following very recent events, we find a rather stark and quite stunning silence emanating from the UNHRC (and remember that I’m only scratching the surface here) …
- Turkey just arrested or fired 50,000 academics.
- In Venezuela, there is mass poverty and hunger in a nation with an abundance of resources. Their president, (Nicolas) Maduro, was just reelected, and the nation was reappointed to the UN Human Rights Council.
- Saudi Arabia is waging a war of aggression in Yemen that has killed thousands of civilians, including some 600 children.
… yet all is ignored while the UNHRC continues to obsess over Israel to a rather bizarre degree.
When it comes to human rights abuses today, the top nation, the No.1 spot, is very much dominated by Saudi Arabia. Their track record for human rights is utterly appalling in so many different ways and is the very worst on the planet, to be specific …
So how has the UNHRC responded to all of this, has even one resolution been issued by the UNHRC?
Nope, instead Saudi Arabia has been granted a seat on the UNHRC.
The fundamental flaw is that the primary human rights abusers are all members of the UNHRC and they back each other up when any criticism is raised. In effect there exists a block of Middle East and African nations, that shield each other from any criticism, and they are then backed up by China, Russia and Cuba. The net effect is not simply an ineffective council, but also one that has become a complete international joke, and so events in Darfur, Tibet, North Korea, Zimbabwe and other places are not even discussed.
The NGO view …
“The HRC is mostly an exercise of speeches with no significance. Discussions among the countries resolve the issues based on their political interests. Countries who perpetrate human rights abuses get a free pass. It doesn’t encourage them to have better practices because there is no penalty attached,”
– Hillel Neuer, American attorney who is also chair of the UN Watch, an NGO that monitors the Council’s activities.