Amnesty accuses the UN. Pot, meet kettle

AmnestyIn an Orwellian statement worthy of any of the great satirists, Amnesty International has accused the UN Security Council of being “no longer fit for purpose”.

The world body had failed in its basic duty after Russia and China blocked several resolutions against the Bashar al-Assad regime, said Salil Shetty, Amnesty’s secretary general, launching its annual report.

The UN Security Council’s charter, he said, was about taking “prompt and effective action” to protect vulnerable people, but “in the case of Syria it has done neither”.

[...]

“What is happening in Syria is effectively crimes against humanity, but the Security Council just watched for months and months.

“In this day and age it is simply unacceptable that thousands of lives have been lost because the Security Council is not fit for purpose.”

Only after a year of protests did the UN come up with “a feeble resolution that allowed a handful of UN observers into Syria”.

Russia, which is a major arms supplier to Syria, used its veto to stymie calls for sanctions, an arms embargo or to refer Syria’s leaders to the International Criminal Court.

Saying that the global body “seemed tired, out of step and anachronistic”, Mr Shetty argued that the power of veto held by the permanent five members – Russia, China, Britain, France and the United States – had been deployed over the years too freely to serve their political and commercial interests.

“If the veto is used, there should be a clear explanation of why, an obligation to justify such action,” he said.

Please don’t get me wrong. I don’t dispute Amnesty’s claim at all. It’s just that Amnesty itself has not been fit for purpose as regards to Israel for a very long time, as this detailed page on NGO Monitor reports.

Elder of Ziyon has also pointed more than once out Amnesty’s mendacious distortions on Israel, as has the redoubtable Giulio Meotti in Ynet.

From Meotti’s article:

Awarded the Nobel Peace Prize (1977) for shining a spotlight on political prisoners, Amnesty International claims to be the “conscience of the world.” This July marks the 50th anniversary of the London-based human rights group, yet Amnesty’s emblem has been degraded and is now the symbol of an ideology estranged from the glorious history of Western human rights.

In fact, Amnesty today constitutes one of the scariest faces of the new anti-Semitism, in the form of its assault on the Jewish people’s right to live as an equal member of the family of nations.

[...]

Even a liberal and a non-Zionist like writer Salman Rushdie has accused Amnesty of “moral bankruptcy,” because the organization is serving as an effective weapon in the hands of human rights’ most dedicated enemies.

Amnesty has played an important role in the portrayal of Israel as the epitome of human rights violator. In 2002, the UK group falsely accused Israel of committing “war crimes” in Jenin: This was a myth and a mockery of international law, but the legend of the rubble and corpses buried with it is still used to assail Israel and the Jews.

Indeed, Amnesty’s reports have formed the political and legal infrastructure for producing the blood libel of Israel as an illegal settler “entity.” Among other things, Amnesty has asked the Obama Administration to “immediately suspend military aid to Israel.”

Amnesty’s fatwa on Israel’s “apartheid wall” and “apartheid roads” has been one of the most repugnant propagandistic manipulations ever suffered by the Jewish State. Contemporary anti-Semitism finds expression not only in the “Zionism is Racism” indictment, but the further indictment of Israel as “an apartheid state,” Amnesty’s euphemism for justifying Israel’s destruction.

And the zinger:

Amnesty’s played a prominent role at the UN Human Rights Council, where Israel has become a pariah state while major human rights violators enjoy exculpatory immunity, and at the Conference of the Contracting Parties to the Geneva Conventions, where Israel became the first ever state to face a country-specific indictment. Recently, the head of Finland’s branch of Amnesty International, Frank Johansson, called Israel “a scum state.”

[...]

Amnesty is crucial in biased reports against Israel submitted at the UN, like the discredited Goldstone Report, and in the campaigns for boycotts, divestment and sanctions against the Jewish State in European courts. Amnesty also plays a role in the ongoing legal indictments against Israeli politicians and the country’s military.

So Amnesty has had no problem cooperating with the UN and its various agencies when it comes to demonising Israel. It has only woken up now that its pet is not conforming to its purported ideals.

Israel and its supporters have long slammed NGOs like Amnesty for singling out Israel’s purported human rights violations while ignoring much more severe human rights abuses elsewhere. In return, Israel was accused of “what-aboutery” and trying to deflect attention.

Now the single-minded microscopic focus on Israel has finally come back to bite these human rights organizations on the nose.  Amnesty accuses the UN precisely what is has been doing for decades, and what Amnesty itself has been doing to.

Pot. Meet kettle.

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