Mission & Name
US Foreign Policy (Dr. El-Najjar's Articles)
Who Is Most Out of Touch With Reality?
By Alan Hart
PIC, Al-Jazeerah, CCUN, April 9, 2012
Alan Hart argues that while the UN Human Rights Council may
well be a hypocritical body because it chooses to ignore numerous human
rights abuses in Africa and Asia, Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin
Netanyahu’s attack on it for its decision to investigate the impact of
Israeli colonies on the Palestinians is not just hypocritical, but absurd
and smacks of paranoia.
If more proof was needed (some of us
think it isn’t) that Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu lives in a
fantasy world that exists only in his own deluded mind, his latest verbal
assault on the UN Human Rights Council for its decision to appoint and
despatch an independent international fact-finding mission “to investigate
the implications of the (illegal) Israeli settlements on the civil,
political, economic, social and cultural rights of the Palestinian people
throughout the occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem”, is
“This claim isn’t just nuts; it’s a sort of craziness
triple play – a lie wrapped in an absurdity swaddled in
The council, Netanyahu said in his fury, has “an automatic majority
against Israel”, is “hypocritical” and “out of touch with reality”. He added
that it “should be ashamed of itself”.
There is, in fact, some substance to the charge that the UN Human Rights
Council is hypocritical. There are many abuses of human rights in many
countries which it does not investigate because the African, Asian and Latin
American majority on the 47-member council say “No”. So there is most
certainly a case for saying that this particular UN body is hypocritical,
even out of touch with some realities and, in that context, appears to be
obsessed with Israel-Palestine.
But does that mean the decision of
the UN Human Rights Council to set up an independent investigation of the
implications of Israel’s on-going colonization of the West Bank including
East Jerusalem, should be treated with contempt and not taken seriously?
Netanyahu claims that it does.
In my opinion that Netanyahu claim
deserves the judgement delivered about a different matter in a recent
article by economist Paul Krugman published in the New York Times.
He was commenting on the claim by the Republican leadership in general and
front-runner Mitt Romney in particular that the high and rising price of
gasoline in America is “thanks to an Obama administration plot”. Krugman
“This claim isn’t just nuts; it’s a sort of craziness triple
play – a lie wrapped in an absurdity swaddled in paranoia.”
Netanyahu’s purpose was, of course, to encourage other powers led by America
to use their influence to kill the UN Human Rights Council’s initiative
before it takes on real life. And the early signs are in his favour. The US
ambassador to the UN in Geneva, Betty King, said the council’s decision
“harmed efforts to restart negotiations between Israel and the
That has to be a joke given that there is no prospect
of restarting real and serious negotiations as long as Israel continues to
consolidate its occupation of the West Bank, and as long as Netanyahu’s
position is, in effect, that negotiations must end with the Palestinians
surrendering on Israel’s terms.
I think it’s reasonable to imagine
that when ambassador King made her statement, she was aware that the Obama
administration would be required by the Zionist lobby and its stooges in
Congress to bully and intimidate the Human Rights Council into aborting its
While Netanyahu waits to see if the Obama
administration will do his dirty work on this occasion, his government has
cut all contact with the UN Human Rights Council and announced that it will
prevent the council’s team of independent investigators entering Israel or
the occupied West Bank from Jordan.
“Will any mainstream Western media institution have the
balls to offend Zionism by giving space or airtime to voices
expressing outrage at Israel’s continuing immunity from what
honest investigation would describe as crimes against
Whichever way you look at it, the signs are that this particular mission
of the UN Human Rights Council will be more than DOA (Dead On Arrival). It
will most likely be DBA (Dead Before Arrival).
In that event one of the questions in my mind will be this.
any mainstream Western media institution have the balls to offend Zionism by
giving space or airtime to voices expressing outrage at Israel’s continuing
immunity from what honest investigation would describe as crimes against
Contrary to what Netanyahu seems to think, the Palestinians
are human and do have rights. And they, not Jews, are the victims in the
true story of the making and sustaining of the conflict in and over
Palestine that became Israel. (As I have written previously, Israeli and
many other Jews need to feel they are the victims because victimhood is, it
seems, what gives them meaning.)
As for the answer to my headline
question, nobody is more out of touch with reality on the ground in the
occupied West Bank than Netanyahu.
Of the 47 rotating member states of the UN Human
Rights Commission, 36 voted in favour of the decision to investigate
Israel’s illegal settlement activities, and 10 including the Czech Republic
Romania, Hungary, Poland, Costa Rica, Italy and Spain, abstained. The United
States was the only country to vote against it.