Richard Falk Reponds to The Lobby’s Vilification

Richard Falk on UN Podium

By Richard Falk in Foreign Policy Journal

Because my blog prompted by the Arizona shootings has attracted many comments pro and con, and more recently has been the object of a more selective public attack on me personally, I thought it appropriate to post a supplementary blog with the purpose of clarifying my actual position and re-focusing attention on the plight and suffering of the Palestinian people being held in captivity. In the background, are crucial issues of free speech, fairness in public discourse, and responsible media treatment of sensitive and controversial affairs of state.

Both the UN Secretary General and the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations harshly criticized some remarks in my personal blog that mentioned the 9/11 attacks. They referred to the views expressed there as ‘despicable and deeply offensive,’ ‘noxious, ‘inflammatory,’ and ‘preposterous.’ Their comments were apparently made in response to a letter written to the UN Secretary General by the head of UN Monitor, a Geneva-based highly partisan NGO, that called misleading attention to this passage in the blog. Ambassador Rice called for my dismissal from my unpaid post as an independent Special Rapporteur of the UN Human Rights Council with a mandate to report upon the Israeli observance of “human rights in Palestinian territories occupied since 1967.”

For anyone who read the blog post in its entirety, it should be plain that the reference to the 9/11 issues is both restrained and tangential. What is stressed in the blog is the importance of carefully examining evidence before drawing conclusions about political and legal responsibility for highly sensitive public acts, and the importance for the serenity of the society of achieving closure in a responsible manner. I never endorsed doubts about the official version of 9/11 beyond indicating what anyone who has objectively examined the controversy knows — that there remain certain gaps in the official explanation that give rise to an array of conspiratorial explanations, and that the 9/11 Commission unfortunately did not put these concerns to rest. My plea was intended to encourage addressing these gaps in a credible manner, nothing more, nothing less. I certainly meant no disrespect toward the collective memory of 9/11 in the country and elsewhere. On the contrary, my intention was to encourage an investigation that might finally achieve closure with respect to doubts that remain prevalent among important sectors of the public, including among some 9/11 families.

What seems apparent from this incident, which is itself disturbing, is that any acknowledgement of doubt about the validity of the official version of the 9/11 events, while enjoying the legal protection of free speech, is denied the political and moral protection that are essential if an atmosphere of free speech worthy of a democracy is to be maintained. When high officials can brand someone who raises some doubts in the most cautious language as ‘an enemy of the people,’ then there are either things to hide or a defensive fury that is out of all proportion to the provocation. To seek further inquiry into the unanswered questions about 9/11 is surely not an unreasonable position

What is dismaying to me is that neither the office of the Secretary General nor the U.S. Mission to the United Nation made any effort to contact me to seek clarification of my remarks on these issues that are not connected with my UN role prior to making their insulting criticisms damaging to my reputation. I would think that as a representative of the UN and a citizen of the United States, I am at least entitled to this minimal courtesy, and more substantially, that whatever criticisms are made are based on what I said rather than on a manifestly inflammatory letter written by the UN Monitor, that has made a habit of publicly attacking me in consistently irresponsible and untruthful ways, presumably with the intention of diverting attention from my criticisms of Israel’s occupation policies in the Palestinian territories. It is always more tempting to shoot the messenger than heed the message. A similar tactic, what I call ‘the politics of deflection’ was deployed over a year ago in a shabby attempt to discredit the distinguished South African jurist, Richard Goldstone, a person of impeccable credentials as an international public servant. The intention was again to avoid a proper focus upon the devastating findings and recommendations of the Goldstone Report submitted to the United Nations after conducting a scrupulous inquiry into the allegations of violation of law associated with the Israeli attacks on Gaza between December 27, 2008 and January 18, 2009.

I remain determined to report as fully and honestly as possible about the massive human rights violations confronting Palestinians who have now lived without rights under occupation for more than 43 years, and to do my best not to let such personal attacks impair my capacity to carry out the assignment that I was invited to perform by the UN.

What the United States Government, the Secretary-General and the media should be focused on is the ongoing, widespread and systematic violation of Palestinians’ human rights by Israel. Only since the beginning of 2011, at least four Palestinian civilians have been killed by Israeli forces and more than 33 others have been injured. This is in addition to the expansion of settlements, home demolitions, forced evictions and displacement of Palestinian families, revocation of residency permits and forced transfers, particularly devastating in East Jerusalem, detention and mistreatment of over 6000 Palestinians, including children, as well as the illegal blockade of Gaza. My forthcoming report to the Human Rights Council addresses these and other severe ongoing violations of Palestinian rights by Israel.

– Richard Falk is an international law and international relations scholar who taught at Princeton University for forty years. Since 2002 he has lived in Santa Barbara, California, and taught at the local campus of the University of California in Global and International Studies and since 2005 chaired the Board of the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation. Read more articles by Richard Falk.

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27 Responses to "Richard Falk Reponds to The Lobby’s Vilification"

  1. dave  February 2, 2011 at 12:32 pm

    here is an eye witness to ‘planes’:

  2. Ken Rechtstein  January 30, 2011 at 10:54 am

    Whom is “UN Watch” kidding or playing for FOOLS by cowardly attacking Richard Falk, just because he happens to be a decent man telling the truth about the plight of the Palestinians under the Rogue State of Israel decades long occupation of THEIR land?

    Richard Falk has proved to have the high moral standards, UN Watch do not have. He is a courageous-honest-unbribable-unblackmailable man, making use of a universally granted CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHT, i.e. telling the truth and expressing freely, in a cautious tone, his mind. The Zion Talmudic International Mafia, of which UN Watch is an intrinsic part, has never addressed the issue of the UN Resolutions UNACCOMPLISHED by Israel for one, but it has the nerve to bully Richard Falk, a respectable man in every aspect, exactly the opposite of “UN WATCH”.

  3. Ben  January 30, 2011 at 8:56 am

    technically there is a narration but it’s occasional on screen text. anyone advocating a gold standard is a Rothschild agent, including ron paul

  4. Ben  January 29, 2011 at 4:39 pm

    I don’t think CIA or Mossad, evil as they are, would deliberately kill 3000 AMERICANS. I believe they did 911, but were told it was a demolition job, with very few, if any, expected deaths- collateral damage.
    And that’s why I believe the “vicsim’ theory. What turned me around was the thousands of ‘lost puppy’ posters all over Manhattan after the event. The posters were Hollywood Movie bullshit, obviously from the mind of a Jew.
    Real people don’t put up ‘lost puppy’ posters when they lose a human being.

    • Ron Paul 2012  January 29, 2011 at 11:05 pm

      “September Clues”?


      Nice try Ben.

    • Ben  January 30, 2011 at 8:48 am

      Jews always go ballistic whenever that film ‘September clues’ is mentioned. Which is funny because the word Jew is never mentioned, the film maker just lets them speak for themselves and lists their names and employers, there isn’t even a narration! But I can understand why Jews don’t like the film- it exposes their crime

    • Ron Paul 2012  January 30, 2011 at 6:13 pm

      It exposes nothing, it’s a dead end…

  5. PAUL LEO FASO  January 29, 2011 at 10:24 am

    The U.N. was used as a platform by George W. Bush in November, 2001 to remind us of who the real enemies were in the war on terror. Bush told the world, in that forum, not to tolerate the conspiracy theories, which in his words would be “MALICIOUS LIES”,
    that would shift the blame from the guilty parties, away from the real terrorists.

    In little less than 2 months from the attack on 9/11, the leader of the free world had the script written with the conspiracy theories set up for the U.N. SMACK DOWN.

    Now, nearly 10 years after the event, the U.N. is the focal point of that blatant falsehood uttered by Bush and propped up by the current puppet Ambassador to that worthless body. Not only did Bush’s effort to hinder the truth fail miserably, it now stands as a sickening testimony to his monumental deceit and perpetuation of this obscene lie as millions of people around the globe support the conclusions reached by Richard Falk.

    After all, when you read the conclusions reached by the former head of the F.B.I., Louie Freeh, commenting on the Official 9/11 Commission Report, they reflect the same concerns simply stated by Richard Falk.

    Why then is there such an outcry from the U.N. and the U.S. Ambassador to the U.N.? Why leave Louie Freeh the ability to say the same thing and not go ballistic on him?

    Well its’ all about the forum people, and nobody likes what Iran’s Ahmadinejad uttered there at the U.N. a few months ago. It’s all about Bush’s “MALICIOUS LIES” set up speech, that now is unraveling and the secrets that will soon strangle all of those desperate to keep the Official Lie as an unholy truth.

  6. Frank  January 28, 2011 at 11:59 pm

    The same man who owned the world trade center during 911 now owns the Sears Tower in Chicago. And Rahm Emmanuel will soon be capo of Chicago. If you work in the Sears Tower in Chicago GET OUT

  7. Doug  January 28, 2011 at 9:51 pm

    911 was an inside job! Mossad demolition experts, Silverstein facilitated the plot with purchase and handling of the WTC Towers. Cheney was the planner and many within the united state, jews, christians, whatever, participated for money…power….deals….complicity by many government agents and all have violated an oath to the constitution and the bill of rights. They must be held accountable or this republic, for what it is worth, is dead! Doug, A/E 911 Truth,
    Architect, Veteran for Peace, Father and Patriot

  8. Rehmat  January 28, 2011 at 9:02 pm

    Professor Richard Falks should be proud that he has joined the company of the world famous professor Mahmud Ahmadinejad for making a similar statement during his last year speech at the UN General Assembly.

  9. Ron Paul 2012  January 28, 2011 at 4:19 pm

    “9/11 Japanese main opposition party questions 9/11 in parliament”

    “Japanese Diet Learns 9/11 Truth ”

  10. Edward Rynearson  January 28, 2011 at 11:16 am

    David Ray Griffin comments @

  11. ProudPrimate  January 28, 2011 at 10:50 am

    If a brighter day ever follows this one, as the blessed 60’s of my youth did the McCarthy days of my childhood, the name of Richard Falk will be celebrated and lionized in the place of high honor. He is a hero and a pillar of conscience, a throwback to days almost forgotten when conscience mattered, and the crimes of power roundly bore the scorn that is appropriate to them.

    • ProudPrimate  January 28, 2011 at 10:58 am

      I forgot to mention he is a shining credit to his Yiddishkeit, to a people formerly known as fiercely courageous defenders of the underdog, like Schwerner & Goodman, like Terkel, like Einstein the peacenik.

  12. Kevin Barrett  January 28, 2011 at 9:18 am

    Zionist terror group “UN Watch” targets Richard Falk; bans comments!

  13. Earlaiman  January 28, 2011 at 7:43 am

    Well spoken Dr. Falk.

    There is hardly more which can be said about the underhanded and inept leadership in the UN which led to such condemnation you and our words for speaking out, and doing what any man might do, asking for Justice for others.

    Now,who will stand and ask for Justice for you?

    I will stand and demand that the Secretary General of the UN and the US Ambassador to the UN be removed from their offices forthwith for displaying such inept leadership and poor examples of the standards of Freedom and Democracy which they purport to support and defend, yet ignore and violate so offensively themselves.

    Recall and dismiss Ban Ki Moon and Ms. Rice.

    As for the trouble-making speaker from the NGO, I suggest that he go back to where he came from, crawl back into his hole and tell his masters the message was “F— off buddy,” this is an American affair, and we can handle it the American way, without your advice, interference, or meddling.


  14. Ross  January 28, 2011 at 3:48 am

    If we look around the planet we see the glue which makes civilisations great ie trust,allegiance,dedication,hard work etc.These few elites that are stuffing the planet,hold values that are contrary to all decent people,who hold up this fragile umbrella called civilisation.They are a total abomination to what’s good and decent in our societies.They look upon with distain and contempt,the very people whom they unethically draw sustainance.These scumbag elites are not good enough to wash the feet of those whom they oppress.

    Richard Falk knows the truth,where are the others who cringe in their comfort zones of cowardice?

    • Debbie Menon  January 28, 2011 at 5:12 am

      @ Ross
      I’d like to stress the point here that there are zero facts to back up David Ray Griffin’s allegations that the US government orchestrated the attack nor did anyone serving US national security interests engage in the cover-ups alleged. There is evidence to prove the Extremist Jews on the 911 Commission did perpetrate a cover- up,that is NOT the US Government!

    • Ross  January 28, 2011 at 7:55 am

      Debbie ,There is good reason not to point the finger always at our chief suspects.It gives them comfort in claiming victim status.300 out of 435 Congressmen signed a letter of allegiance to Israel.A lot of non Zionist corporates came along for the ride of greed and power.It has now all turned to shit with the Israel,ie Zionist psychopaths choosing a nuke war with Iran as means of escape.

      There is nothing inherently evil with being Jewish.The Catholics and Muslims like to think they are also the chosen people.It is a basic human flaw of wanting approval from some father figure.

      I did the adaption ‘Mossange the Mystery Prat’ TS Elliot style, Debbie,which is unoquivocal in laying the blame at elements within Israel.

      When I talk about ‘The Elites’ it is a mentality that pervades all human psyche,since our inability to cope with mortality and human foibles,creates this insecurity,that yearns power at any cost.

      I’m not religious.Jesus was a Jew but a very wise man.”Let he who is without
      sin cast cast the first stone.”

    • Gary Walker  January 28, 2011 at 1:35 pm


      Does a “wise man” condemn people to hell where there will be “wailing and gnashing of teeth, where the worm never dies, where the fires are never quenched,” simply because they do not believe in his bull shit?

      If Jesus really existed, and I do not think he did, he was ignorant and cruel.


    • Ross  January 28, 2011 at 4:35 pm

      Gary,you may well be right.Jesus may have well only existed in the imagination of men but that does not make the wise words any less true.Let’s reveal the truth but make sure we don’t end up being like our oppressors.

    • Ron Paul 2012  January 28, 2011 at 4:28 pm

      I’m surprised by your position Debbie.
      Israel could not have done it without help from the inside.

      “9/11 Pentagon Episode: Conspiracy Theory with Jesse Ventura”

    • AJHenry  January 29, 2011 at 7:25 pm

      Deb, hadn’t heard that Griffin had fingered the “US” government. Very important development. Previously I’d heard him say that identifying the perpetrators wasn’t his thing.

      Not surprised in the least that he got this completely wrong. Agree with your statements and would only like to add that we don’t have a representative government. Baruch was running the show a hundred years ago. Noise and bullshit in the media about democracy and freedom notwithstanding.

  15. Ingrid B  January 28, 2011 at 1:23 am

    You are right, this is how we find out who to trust and who our friends are.. What we need are more people of courage to speak out..
    I used to wonder why raging Zionists were invited to take part in discussion programmes and allowed to ramble on, then I realized that they usually ended up making themselves look bad..
    I used to send things of interest regarding Palestine to a long list of people. One guy accused me of sending Spam, he was clearly upset. I asked him, in reply, if he was Jewish. He then accused me of racism. I asked him if it was racist to ask someone if they were Jewish. He then accused me of making him look bad, to which I replied that it was he, himself, who made him, look bad. Never heard from him again..

  16. Ingrid B  January 28, 2011 at 1:11 am

    It`s a bit much when good people of conscience cannot speak their minds anymore..

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