The ‘Human Rights Council’ comes after … the United States
The New York Times reports that a United Nations ‘Human Rights Council’ investigator hasÂ called on the United States to demonstrate that it is not randomly killing people in violation of international law (read: committing war crimes) through its use of drones to liquidate terrorists in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Carl
UNITED NATIONS (AFP) â€“ US drone strikes against suspected terrorists inÂ Pakistan could be breakingÂ againstÂ , the UN’s top investigator of such crimes said.andÂ
“The problem with the United States is that it is making an increased use of drones/Predators (which are) particularly prominently used now in relation to Pakistan and Afghanistan,” UN Special Rapporteur on Extrajudicial ExecutionsÂtold a press conference.
“I would like to know the legal basis upon which the United States is operating, in other words… who is running the program, what accountability mechanisms are in place in relation to that,” Alston said.
“Secondly, what precautions the United States is taking to ensure that these weapons are used strictly for purposes consistent with.
Of course, needless to mention: the Taliban and Al Qaeda respect International Law... Six UN staff dead in Taliban raid on UN hostel
UN condemns American embargo on Cuba
The UN general assembly has overwhelmingly condemned the US economic embargo againstÂ Cuba, adding pressure on the Obama administration to abandon its 47-year-old policy. When the UN calls, the Obama-bastard jumps: Read it all>>
Just a few days ago UN Special Rapporteur Martin Sheinin won the “Asshole of the Month” award here on Winds of Jihad for this:
Human gender is “changeable over time and contexts,” sex slaves must not be “stigmatized” for their work, and it’s important to recognize the role of “transgender and intersex individuals as stakeholders” in counterterrorism policy.
“Hamas respects International Law..!”
Well, if the world was living under sharia he might have a point:
In an interview with some sycophantic nobody from the website Palestine Note, Head Hamashole Khaled MeshaalÂ insulted the intelligence of everyone by claiming, inter alia, that Hamas respectsÂ , will form an honest and neutral investigative committee to look into their conduct during Operation Cast Lead, and â€“ here’s my favorite â€“ did not aim their rockets at Israeli civilians who were hit, rather, because of the rockets’ poor accuracy Â More from Israellicool
“It was the ninth reported attack on Israel from Lebanese territory since the end of fighting between Israel and the south-Lebanon-based Hezbollah in 2006.” “Israel shows restraint after latest rocket from southern Lebanon,” by David Harris forÂ Xinhua, October 29: thanks to Jihad Watch
The only law that really matters: “Blasphemy Law”
As noted here many times, such a law would criminalize all honest exploration of the Islamic motives and goals of the jihadis, thereby rendering us defenseless against them. What is odd here is that the Christian Science Monitor says that the U.S. is opposing this initiative. That is good news if it is true, but if it is true, why did theÂ U.S. cosponsor with Egypt a UN Human Rights Council resolution calling for criminalization of incitement to religious hatred?
Remember the Danish “Muhammad cartoons” that set off riots by offended Muslims more than three years ago? The debate pitted freedom of press and speech against notions of freedom from insult of one’s religion. It rages still – but now in a forum with international legal implications.
For years, Islamic nations have succeeded in passing “blasphemy” resolutions at the United Nations (in the General Assembly and in its human rights body). The measures call on states to limit religiously offensive language or speech. No one wants their beliefs ridiculed, but the freedom to disagree over faith is what allows for the free practice of religion. The resolutions are misguided, but also only symbolic, because they’re nonbinding.
Symbolism no longer satisfies the sponsor of these resolutions – the Organization of the Islamic Council. Under the leadership of Pakistan, the 57-nation OIC wants to give the religious antidefamation idea legal teeth by making it part of an international convention, or legally binding treaty. Members of the UN Human Rights Council are passionately debating that idea in Geneva this week.
The United States under Barack Obama recently joined the UNHRC, maligned for years as the mouthpiece for countries that are themselves flagrant human rights abusers. A “new” council formed in 2006. President Obama’s hope is that as an engaged member, the US can further reform – and its own interests. This case will test his theory.
Consider the wording put forth by Pakistan, written on behalf of the OIC. It proposes “legal prohibition of publication of material that negatively stereotypes, insults or uses offensive language” on matters regarded by religious followers as “sacred or inherent to their dignity as human beings.”
This gives broad latitude to governments to decide what’s offensive. Countries such as Pakistan already have national blasphemy laws, but a global treaty would give them international cover to suppress minority religious groups with the excuse that these groups offend mainstream beliefs.
And what about unpopular, even “insulting” dissenters within a majority religion – such as women who seek to interpret Islamic sharia law so that they may gain more rights?
Besides, international treaties are meant to protect the rights of people, not ideas. A legal defense of dignity – how a person is viewed – is not on par with a defense of a person’s inherent identity and rights. And treaties already aim to protect individuals from discrimination and violence based on religion.
As a newcomer to the Human Rights Council, the US is vigorously arguing against the OIC’s latest push, as are European countries. They may not get very far in changing minds in the governments of Egypt or Saudi Arabia. But human rights advocates such as Freedom House and the US Commission on International Religious Freedom say Latin American and sub-Saharan African countries could be persuaded to resist the OIC’s push….