Instead of serving as a moderating factor in the ongoing conflict in Gaza, the UN is a co-conspirator with Hamas against Israel.
By: Rabbi Abraham Cooper
The specter of war hangs large over the Israel-Gaza border, after communities in southern Israel this week suffered a barrage of 200 Hamas missiles — including a powerful Grad missile that landed in Beersheba, far from the border. Iranian money, weapons and tactics may be fueling Hamas’ attacks, but there are other unindicted co-conspirators at work, and it is time to call one out: the United Nations.
Nikki Haley, the straight-talking undiplomatic US ambassador to the United Nations, has tried and failed to get the Security Council and General Assembly to denounce Hamas’ serial use of civilians to violently breach the Israel-Gaza dividing line. “Attacking Israel is their favorite political sport,” Haley lamented.
Indeed, cynical maneuvers at the UN have made Hamas bulletproof to even the slightest diplomatic slap. The terror group knows the world body will never condemn it for murdering Jews or putting Gaza’s civilians in harm’s way. It knows the UN will always blame the Jewish state.
Just days after 62 Palestinians were killed during a Hamas-led attempt to breach Israel’s security fence, the UN Human Rights Council voted to investigate the deaths, no doubt with an eye toward ultimately blaming Israel.
This, despite a declaration by a Hamas official that 53 of the dead were members of Hamas or affiliated with another terrorist group, Islamic Jihad — an admission that this was no “peaceful protest” by innocent Gazan civilians.
UN human rights chief Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein accused the Jewish state of keeping Gazans “caged in a toxic slum.” He failed to explain why Hamas diverts — i.e., steals — shipments of building materials meant for civilian housing repairs so it can expand its terror tunnels into Israeli territory.
The next day, Haley announced the US was quitting the council over its unending hostility toward Israel.
This week, as Fox News reported, the UN’s special rapporteur for human rights, Michael Lynk, suggested suspending a UN member state for violating international law. North Korea? Iran? Syria? No, Israel — a country facing 200,000 rockets from Hezbollah in the north and deadly attacks by Hamas in the south.
All this diplomatic cover from the United Nations reassures Hamas that it won’t face consequences from the international community, essentially giving it a green light to launch more attacks.
UN agencies on the ground in Gaza are also part of the problem. The United Nations Relief and Welfare Agency employs over 11,000 people there, including medical personnel, teachers and school administrators. It claims to have 267 schools servicing over a quarter million students in Gaza. But far from serving as a voice of reason and reconciliation, UNRWA feeds the beast of victimhood.
Its textbooks never even mention the state of Israel; “Palestine” runs from the Mediterranean to the Jordan River. One map even invented an Arabic name for Tel Aviv, Israel’s leading metropolis, which was built from empty sand dunes by Zionist pioneers in the early 20th century. Israel isn’t demonized in the curriculum; it simply doesn’t exist.
On the days in May that Hamas was planning its deadly border riots, UNRWA school teachers and administrators announced, out of the blue, that schools and offices would be closed. Clearly, their aim was to encourage youngsters to become cannon fodder for Hamas. I doubt there is a more powerful exhibition of mass child abuse in our time.
No, the UN might not directly and openly steer weapons and money to Hamas for attacks on Israel. But its diplomatic protection of the group, endless rhetorical bashing of the Jewish state and pervasive promotion of anti-Israel propaganda encourages Hamas’ outrageous behavior. Moreover, any aid or services it provides relieves Hamas of funding those needs, freeing it to divert money to terrorist activities.
Secretary General António Guterres is a decent, fair-minded UN chief. But US taxpayers question why they’re sending their dollars to an organization engaged in such shameful shenanigans. If Guterres fails to regain control of the asylum, he may soon see the US cash flow shut off for good.
Rabbi Abraham Cooper is associate dean at the Simon Wiesenthal Center.
This article originally appeared in the New York Post.