The duty to expel Israel from the UN
… by Bruce Tyler Wick
Killing the peacemakers IS different–not morally, but politically. This is factually demonstrable.
In a video interview with “Democracy Now!,” author and scholar, Norman Finkelstein, told Amy Goodman and Aaron Mate, how the latest ceasefire in Gaza, since expired, came about:
Each day he [President Obama] came out, he or one of his spokespersons, and said, “Israel has the right to defend itself.” Each time he said that, it was the green light to Israel that it can continue with its terror bombing of Gaza. That went on for day after day after day, schools, mosques, hospitals targeted.
But then you reached a limit. The limit was [reached,] when Israel started to target the U.N. shelters—targeted one shelter, there was outrage; targeted a second shelter, there was outrage. And now the pressure began to build up in the United Nations.
This is a United Nations—these are U.N. shelters. And the pressure began to build up. It reached a boiling point with the third shelter. And then Ban Ki-moon, the comatose secretary-general of the United Nations and a U.S. puppet, even he was finally forced to say something, saying these are criminal acts.
Obama was now cornered. He was looking ridiculous in the world. It was a scandal. Even the U.N. secretary-general, Ban Ki-moon, was now calling it a criminal act. So finally Obama, the State Department said “unacceptable,” “deplorable.” [Transcript, “Democracy Now!”].
“Rebellious subjects, enemies to peace…
Throw your mistemper’d weapons to the ground,
And hear the sentence of your moved prince.”
[Romeo and Juliet, Act, 1, Scene 1].
And so the bombing, shelling and strafing stopped; and Israel withdrew its ground troops–however temporarily–since Israel will not lift its siege of Gaza, and Hamas will accept nothing less than a lifting of that Israeli blockade.
Thus, it would appear that even the briefest cessation of hostilities depends upon protection of the UN mission in Gaza. Protection implies punishment of violators, and to that subject I now turn.
The United Nations was Eleanor and Franklin Roosevelt’s last, best gift. The “United Nations”? Nations “united” for or against what, pray tell? Nations united against WAR, the “scourge” of humankind [UN Charter, Preamble]–one, or even two, of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse–variously, “Conquest, War, Famine and Death”; or “Pestilence, War, Famine and Death.”
FDR never served in Congress, though of course he dealt with Congress for over a dozen years, while he was president. Indeed, Roosevelt began his political career, as a state legislator in the Senate of New York State. Later as governor of New York State–then, the nation’s most populous–Roosevelt necessarily dealt with both Houses of the New York State legislature, and to a lesser extent, with the federal government, as well.
All FDR’s governmental, and particularly legislative, experience, is evident in the provisions of the UN Charter, dealing with the General Assembly and the Security Council, both of which are modeled after legislative bodies.
No legislative assembly need accept violence to itself, its members or staff, or obstruction of its activities. All such bodies have inherent power to convene and to act. The rule is well stated in Ohio, where I live and work:
“Each House [of the Ohio General Assembly] has all powers necessary to provide for its safety and the undisturbed transaction of its business, and to obtain, through committees or otherwise, information affecting legislative action under consideration or in contemplation, or with reference to any alleged breach of its privileges or misconduct of its members, and to that end to enforce the attendance and testimony of witnesses, and the production of books and papers.” [Ohio Constitution, § 2.06, Powers of each house (part)].
The bombing, shelling or strafing of UN facilities in Gaza is no different in principle, or in effect, from the use of the weapons of war against UN Headquarters in New York City.
As we approach yet another anniversary of 9/11 without prosecution of the guilty; I would respectfully remind that the sudden disappearance of New York City landmarks, such as the UN complex, is no longer fanciful, but a historical fact. Lightning does strike twice–just wait a while.
Israel, the “Sponger State”
In his “Democracy Now!” interview, Norman Finkelstein refers to Israel as a “sponger” state (i.e., of or like a sponge)–in that, Israel destroys at will, but relies upon the rest of the world to rebuild, and to pay for, whatever Israel destroys.
Not mentioned by Mr. Finkelstein, probably because too well known for mention: Israel does not even pay for what it uses to destroy Gaza, but obtains the weapons and cash free of charge from the United States!
So, others pay entirely, both for what Israel destroys and for the rebuilding (when others do rebuild) of what Israel destroys. To paraphrase a late 19th Century British statesman, this is not only a crime, but also an absurdity!
Expulsion: a theoretical possibility becomes a duty.
Article 6 of the UN Charter, provides:
“A Member of the United Nations which has persistently violated the Principles contained in the present Charter may be expelled from the Organization by the General Assembly upon the recommendation of the Security Council.”
In attempting to locate a photo of Israel’s destruction of a UN school, during its latest invasion of Gaza, I found one from the prior invasion in 2008-09–the so-called “Operation Lead Cast.” The Egyptian article, containing the photo (left), notes there were then 200,000 Palestinian students in Gaza’s schools.
Even on the narrow issue, of Israeli destruction of UN schools in Gaza; Israel is a repeat offender.
The Security Council must recommend Israel’s expulsion, but there seems no reason why the General Assembly couldn’t ask for such a recommendation to act upon. I suggest the following, as a convenient form:
“We, the General Assembly of the United Nations, respectfully request the Security Council to recommend to us, pursuant to Article 6 of the United Nations Charter, the immediate expulsion of the State of Israel from the United Nations.
As part of its recommendation, or as an attachment to it, the General Assembly respectfully requests the Security Council to catalog all acts of violence by the State of Israel against the United Nations, its facilities, activities and personnel, and those under United Nations’ protection.
From the adoption of this resolution forward, the General Assembly respectfully requests that no person in either a pubic or private capacity, speak aloud the word, ‘Israel,’ as the name of a modern state.”
The US must abstain in Security Council voting.
Rule 40 of the Provisional Rules of the Security Council provides:
“Voting in the Security Council shall be in accordance with the relevant Articles of the Charter and of the Statute of the International Court of Justice.”
Article 24 of the Statute of the International Court of Justice considers conflicts of interest and other issues, which might disqualify a judge of the Court:
1. If, for some special reason, a member of the Court considers that he should not take part in the decision of a particular case, he shall so inform the President.
2. If the President considers that for some special reason one of the members of the Court should not sit in a particular case, he shall give him notice accordingly.
3. If in any such case the member of the Court and the President disagree, the matter shall be settled by the decision of the Court.”
If as is often stated, and even more widely believed, the US supplies the money and weapons Israel uses to attack the UN; then the United States should certainly abstain from voting in the Security Council, on a recommendation to expel Israel, based in whole or part upon Israel’s attacks on the UN.
In the nature of things, the question of the United States’ disqualification from voting, on recommending Israel’s expulsion from the UN, will occur before the actual vote on recommending expulsion. But as I envision, Security Council consideration of expulsion will come at the General Assembly’s specific request.
<< The Great Commandment
28 And one of the scribes came up and heard them disputing with one another, and seeing that he [Jesus] answered them well, asked him, “Which commandment is the most important of all?” 29 Jesus answered, “The most important is, ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one.
30 And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ 31 The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”
32 And the scribe said to him, “You are right, Teacher. You have truly said that there is no other besides him. 33 And to love him with all the heart and with all the understanding and with all the strength, and to love one’s neighbor as oneself, is much more than all whole burnt offerings and sacrifices.”
34 And when Jesus saw that he answered wisely, he said to him, “You are not far from the kingdom of God.” And after that no one dared to ask him any more questions. >> [Mark 12: 28-34 ESV].
Without love, there is only judgment; so let the judgment come.