The UN is an increasingly Orwellian organization. One of many, many examples is their outgoing High Commissioner on Human Rights, Navi Pillay of South Africa. Austin Ruse gives us her background:
United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon is expected to name abortion advocate Navanethem “Navi” Pillay of South Africa as the UN’s High Commissioner for Human Rights (UNHCR) this week despite reservations from the United States.
According to the New York Times, the United States has privately raised concerns about Pillay’s nomination to the top human rights post because of her strong support for abortion. Pillay is a founding member of the international non-governmental organization Equality Now, a group that has spearheaded campaigns for abortion access in Poland and Nepal. Pillay remains on the board of the organization which receives major funding from pro-abortion foundations including George Soros’ Open Society Institute and the Ford Foundation.
Go here to read the rest. So, being in favor of snuffing out unborn kids is now a “human right”. George Orwell was not so much a writer as a prophet. As the chief human rights bureaucrat since 2008, Pillay has been pushing to have governments around the world criminalize the pro-life cause. Go here to read about her efforts. Ms. Pillay is a walking stereotype of the contemporary left in the causes which she embraces and those she opposes, and in her firm conviction that those who oppose her agendas must be shut up by government power, so long as that power is wielded by her ideological think-a-likes. Human rights for thee so long as thou agree with me, sums up her philosophy.
The attitude of Ms. Pillay in regard to the Gaza War is therefore predictable and Christopher Johnson, a non-Catholic who has taken up the cudgels so frequently for the Church that I have named him Defender of the Faith, gives a recent statement by her on the subject a fisking to remember:
Manhattan real estate is an incredibly valuable commodity. So whenever this country wakes the hell up and withdraws from the United Nations (or, at the very least, pushes through the idea of moving the world headquarters of that ridiculous institution to Geneva, Switzerland and permanently off American soil), what should be done with the Rockefeller family’s former Turtle Bay property?
The United Nations’ senior human rights official said on Thursday she believed Israel was deliberately defying international law in its military offensive in Gaza and that world powers should hold it accountable for possible war crimes.
Oh right, right, right, Hamas is bad too.
High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay also said that Hamas militants in Gaza have also violated international humanitarian law by firing rockets indiscriminately into Israel, sometimes from densely-populated areas.
Except that we don’t really believe that.
Israel has attacked homes, schools, hospitals, and UN premises in apparent violation of the Geneva Conventions, Pillay said, a week after her Human Rights Council resolved to open a commission of inquiry into Israel’s alleged crimes against humanity.
“Therefore I would say that they appear to be defying… deliberate defiance of obligations that international law imposes on Israel,” Pillay told a news briefing. “This is why again and again I say we cannot allow impunity, we cannot allow this lack of accountability to go on.”
We all know the real criminal here.
She also criticized the United States, Israel’s main ally, for failing to use its influence with the Jewish state to halt the carnage.
“Many of my remarks have been directed to the United States since they are a party with influence over Israel to do much more to stop the killing, to bring the parties to the negotiating table. I’ve called also for an end to the blockade and an end to the occupation.”
Pillay said that she was appalled at Washington consistently voting against resolutions on Israel in the Human Rights Council, General Assembly and Security Council.
Here’s one blatantly obvious war crime for you. Israel refuses to share its self-defense technology with people who wish to exterminate it.
“They have not only provided the heavy weaponry which is now being used by Israel in Gaza but they’ve also provided almost $1 billion in providing the ‘Iron Domes’ to protect the Israelis from rocket attacks,” she said. “But no such protection has been provided to Gazans against the shelling.”
Seriously. I’m open to suggestions. Turn the UN into office space and/or a branch of the New York Public Library? Make the UN complex into an Orthodox synagogue and a particularly traditionalist Christian megachurch? Or should we just plow the place under and give it back to the Lenapes with our profuse and abject apologies. Continue reading
I find it bleakly amusing that the UN has had so many enthusiastic advocates at the Vatican over the years:
Felice Gaer, the director of the American Jewish Committee’s Jacob Blaustein Institute for the Advancement of Human Rights, said the Catholic Church’s 2,000-year-old doctrinal teaching on abortion may be responsible for nine-year-old rape victims giving birth.
Papal Nuncio Silvano Tomasi, the Permanent Observer of the Holy See to the United Nations, anticipated the question and said it was the Christian church’s pro-life position that protected human rights.
“The Holy See’s goal is to prevent children from being tortured or killed before birth, as is stipulated in the Convention,” he said in an outline drawn up before the hearings. “For example, in Canada, 622 living babies were delivered after failed abortion attempts, between 2000 and 2001. 66 such cases were registered in the UK in 2005. Some methods of late-term abortions constitute forms of torture, particularly in the case of dilation and evacuation, where ‘the fetus, still alive, is dismembered to be pulled out of the womb in pieces.’”
“From what I am reading, this is no more than UN propaganda trying to make the Catholic Church seem ‘extreme’ for not advocating for abortion in the case of rape or sexual assault,” abstinence speaker Pam Stenzel, who was conceived in rape, told LifeSiteNews. “It is not news that some members of the UN want abortion access for all women, including minors, and when access is denied they consider that a violation of ‘women’s rights.’” Continue reading
A guest post from commenter John By Any Other Name on the attack on the Vatican made by that expensive farce that goes by the name of the United Nations:
Yesterday, the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child issued a report, purportedly over the sexual abuse scandal involving the Catholic Church. Forget for a moment the average Catholic’s (need I qualify that with “non-dissenting”?…or “orthodox”?) bias in reading this report…and forget for a moment the facts of the scandal…that’s what most of the “top and bottom of the hour” reporting is focusing on…yet, this same UN report is attempting to get the Vatican to change its own doctrine and canon law. How consonant this is with the current Administration’s chilling efforts related to the HHS contraception/abortifacient mandate as well (Sebellius and Little Sisters of the Poor) as the general trend of lawsuits related to the redefinition of marriage (Christian bakers and gay “marriage” wedding cakes). Breitbart gives us the details:
The Committee specifically told the Church “to review its position on abortion which places obvious risks on the life and health of pregnant girls and to amend Canon 1398 relating to abortion with a view to identifying circumstances under which access to abortion services can be permitted.”
The Committee lamented “the negative consequences of the Holy See’s position and practices of denying access to contraception, as well as to sexual and reproductive health and information.” The Committee directed the Church “to access the serious implications of its position on adolescents’ enjoyment of highest attainable standard of health and overcome all the barriers and taboos surrounding adolescent sexuality…”
The Committee is also displeased with the Church for not recognizing same-sex families: “The Committee recommends that the Holy See ensure that Canon Law provisions recognize the diversity of family settings and do not discriminate children (sic) based on the type of family they live in.”
The Committee also charged the Church with contributing to violence against homosexuals: “The Holy See’s past statements and declarations on homosexuality which contribute to the social stigmatization of and violence against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender adolescents and children raised by same-sex couples.”
For some analysis refuting the alleged purpose of the report, the sexual abuse scandal, here’s this at Crisis magazine: Continue reading
Wesley Smith, in an article in The Weekly Standard, notes that there is a move afoot at the United Nations to hold that banning abortion is torture:
Méndez—whose full title is “special rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment”—just released a report to the General Assembly on torture “in health care settings.” It is a startling read. He brands with that extreme term not only medical actions and omissions that clearly are not torture as most people understand it, but also national policies disfavored by the international ruling class. Thus, “The Committee against Torture has repeatedly expressed concerns about restrictions on access to abortion and about absolute abortion bans as violating the prohibition on torture and ill treatment.” Unstated (but implied) is that pro-life countries like Ireland are committing crimes against humanity. Continue reading
Hattip to commenter Greg Mockeridge for bringing this matter to my attention. Yesterday the Senate defeated by 5 votes the attempt to ratify the UN Convention on Disabilities Treaty. Go here to read the text. It is the usual type of windy, gaseous formulation that one expects from the UN. It is overwhelmingly popular among the permanent government class in most Western nations. It has been passed by most of the nations of the world. It will be ignored by most of the nations of the Earth where the rulers are masters at mouthing feel good platitudes while doing as they please. In the West it will provide jobs for pressure groups through the filing of unending law suits to enforce the terms of this glop of political correctness, socialism, fuzzy thinking and lawyer full employment . I am opposed to such treaties as a matter of principle. American rights should be determined by Americans and not by temporary majorities at the UN, that modern Tower of Babel.
The main reason why the treaty failed was abortion. Among the many twisting and often contradictory provisions was this gem at Article 25 (a):
Provide persons with disabilities with the same range, quality and standard of free or affordable health care and programmes as provided to other persons, including in the area of sexual and reproductive health and population-based public health programmes;
Reproductive health of course is a euphemism for contraceptives and that form of child murder that goes by the term abortion. This conflicts with Article 10 of the treaty:
States Parties reaffirm that every human being has the inherent right to life and shall take all necessary measures to ensure its effective enjoyment by persons with disabilities on an equal basis with others.
Senator Marco Rubio (R. Fla.) attempted to take abortion out of the treaty with this amendment:
The United States understands that the phrase ‘sexual and reproductive health’ in Article 25(a) of the Convention does not include abortion, and its use in that article does not create any abortion rights, cannot be interpreted to constitute support, endorsement, or promotion of abortion, and in no way suggests that abortion be promoted as a method of family planning. Continue reading
Observers from the UN, allied with Leftist groups in the US, are planning to send observers to monitor our elections to ensure that there is no “voter suppression”:
United Nations-affiliated election monitors from Europe and central Asia will be at polling places around the U.S. looking for voter suppression activities by conservative groups, a concern raised by civil rights groups during a meeting this week. The intervention has drawn criticism from a prominent conservative-leaning group combating election fraud.
The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), a United Nations partner on democratization and human rights projects, will deploy 44 observers from its human rights office around the country on Election Day to monitor an array of activities, including potential disputes at polling places. It’s part of a broader observation mission that will send out an additional 80 to 90 members of parliament from nearly 30 countries.
The Lone Star State is having none of it:
Ambassador Daan Everts
Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe
UI. Miodowa 10 00-251 Warsaw, Poland
Dear Ambassador Everts:
The Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) will reportedly dispatch election observers to the State of Texas to monitor the November 2012 general election. While it remains unclear exactly what your monitoring is intended to achieve, or precisely what tactics you will use to achieve the proposed monitoring, OSCE has stated publicly that it will visit polling stations on Election Day as part of its monitoring plan.
In April, you reportedly met with a group of organizations that have filed lawsuits challenging election integrity laws enacted by the Texas Legislature. One of those organizations, Project Vote, is closely affiliated with ACORN, which collapsed in disgrace after its role in a widespread voter-registration fraud scheme was uncovered. In September, a federal appeals court rejected Project Vote’s challenge to the State’s voter-registration regulations and allowed Texas to continue enforcing laws that were enacted to protect the integrity of the voter-registration process.
According to a letter that Project Vote and other organizations sent to you, OSCE has identified Voter ID laws as a barrier to the right to vote. That letter urged OSCE to monitor states that have taken steps to protect ballot integrity by enacting Voter ID laws. The OSCE may be entitled to its opinions about Voter ID laws, but your opinion is legally irrelevant in the United States, where the Supreme Court has already determined that Voter ID laws are constitutional.
If OSCE members want to learn more about our election processes so they can improve their own democratic systems, we welcome the opportunity to discuss the measures Texas has implemented to protect the integrity of elections. However, groups and individuals from outside the United States are not allowed to influence or interfere with the election process in Texas. This State has robust election laws that were carefully crafted to protect the integrity of our election system. All persons—including persons connected with OSCE—are required to comply with these laws.
Elections and election observation are regulated by state law. The Texas Election Code governs anyone who participates in Texas elections—including representatives of the OSCE. The OSCE’s representatives are not authorized by Texas law to enter a polling place. It may be a criminal offense for OSCE’s representatives to maintain a presence within 100 feet of a polling place’s entrance. Failure to comply with these requirements could subject the OSCE’s representatives to criminal prosecution for violating state law.
Attorney General of Texas Continue reading
“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”
The Founding Fathers left no doubt which freedoms they held most important. They inserted them into the First Amendment to the Constitution. Freedom of speech and of the press come right after freedom of religion. These freedoms, and all the others set forth in the Constitution, are the birthright of all Americans and a precious example to the rest of the world. That is why I am bemused by the manner in which the Obama administration appears to be indifferent to attempts to undermine freedom of speech and of the press at the UN.
“The new resolution, championed by the Obama administration, has a number of disturbing elements. It emphasizes that “the exercise of the right to freedom of expression carries with it special duties and responsibilities . . .” which include taking action against anything meeting the description of “negative racial and religious stereotyping.” It also purports to “recognize . . . the moral and social responsibilities of the media” and supports “the media’s elaboration of voluntary codes of professional ethical conduct” in relation to “combating racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance.”
On December 10th — the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, adopted and proclaimed by the UN General Assembly resolution 217 A (III) of 10 December 1948 — pro-abortion groups will present petitions asking the United Nation’s General Assembly to make abortion a universally recognized human right.
The Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute created an alternate petition drive that calls for government to interpret the Universal Declaration of Human Rights as protecting human life from the moment of conception to natural death.