(June 11, 2015 / JNS)
Although Israel has been providing free medical treatment to Syrian refugees as well as Palestinians from the disputed territories and even from Gaza, the U.N. World Health Organization singled out Israel as the one country in the world to be condemned for violating human health rights. Saudi Arabia, which sits as a member of the U.N. Human Rights Council, sponsored the exercise in the absurd.
If hypocrisy needed a poster child, the despotic and brutal regime of Saudi Arabia, which is currently bombing Yemenite civiliansinto oblivion and is advertising job openings for additional executioners (growth industry in Saudi Arabia), more than set the standard.
Worse, a majority of the so called “civilized” nations of the world supported the resolution, showing that subservience to the power of oil trumps any semblance of integrity in the international community.
The Saudis can be dismissed. It is unnecessary to delineate their acts of brutality. These have long appeared before the world. The Saudis’ hypocrisy is a mainstay of their propaganda. If not for their oil, their anti-Israel vitriol would be disregarded, as one day the changing nature of the energy market will cause it to be.
With the exception of naive, leftist college students who are taught that the U.N. is a citadel of virtue, no one will take a Saudi-sponsored resolution seriously.
The harm is not in the resolution. It is in its acceptance by the global community, and the message that the action sends to the Israelis.
Further isolating the Israelis with resolutions forged in the cauldron of the absurd, and mixed with hypocrisy, will not pave the way for peace. The consequences will ultimately be indistinguishable from those of the second Palestinian intifada, which had disastrous results for the Israeli peace movement.
Peace requires preparing a population for accepting peace. Glorifying mass murderers and suicide bombers as role models for children does not accomplish that. On June 7, the Gaza Cup (soccer) was played in honor of terrorists who murdered Israeli soldiers and are holding their remains.
The international community has an apoplectic fit every time an Israeli builds an extra room in Jerusalem, but is conspicuously silent about Palestinian or Arab incitement. Apart from the U.N.-sanctioned Saudi blood libel, the most recent campaign centers around Jews visiting the Temple Mount, an area that is also sacred to Islam. Jews have no problem with Muslims visiting the Wailing Wall, but then again, Judaism is not a triumphalist religion.
Palestinian and Jordanian media fabricate stories of Jews desecrating the Temple Mount. Organized heckling and harassment, even from young children, meet Jewish visitors there daily. Jews need to be accompanied by police or soldiers to visit their holy place. The idea that the Temple Mount could be holy to both faiths, and that God hears all prayers, is obviously anathema to Islam, but inciting children to harassment at a sacred place is not.
After the Israelis unified Jerusalem from Jordan’s arbitrary and illegal division of the holy city, general Moshe Dayan decided that the interests of peace would be served by giving Muslims control of the Temple Mount. Instead of this being recognized as an act of goodwill, it has been seen as an act of weakness to be abused and exploited.
Peace between Israelis and Arabs, however desirable, is currently an illusion. The greatest obstacle to peace is not the settlements, but the corrupt socialization of children at the most tender of ages into raw hatred, not just for Israelis but also for Jews generally. It manifests itself daily in the behavior of children on the Temple Mount, in the celebration of mass murders, and in blood-libel resolutions promulgated at the U.N.
When the civilized nations of the world claim they want peace between Arabs and Israelis, they need to look at their own behavior in supporting the 21st century’s U.N.-sanctioned blood libels as one of the great obstacles to achieving that.
Abraham H. Miller is an emeritus professor of political science, University of Cincinnati, and a senior fellow with the Salomon Center for American Jewish Thought. Follow the center on Twitter @salomoncenter.