The UN Commission of Inquiry into the “Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and Israel,” just released their first annual report on their findings. The pro-Palestinian bias presented in the report is unfortunately not surprising, but the blatant demonstration of Israel-hatred is deeply disturbing.
The United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) Commission of Inquiry was launched in 2021 following the war between Israel and Gaza, known as “Operation Guardian of the Walls.” In the eleven-day conflict, Hamas fired over 4,000 rockets toward Israel’s population centers. Israel responded with precisely targeted military strikes on Hamas headquarters and weapons storage facilities. The UNHRC probe is supposed to investigate alleged Israeli human-rights abuses within sovereign Israel and against the Palestinians living over the pre-1967 lines in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank. The probe is also open-ended and permanent, and to date, Israel is the only UN member state against whom such a probe has been commissioned. The permanence and open-ended aspect alone clearly shows that the motives behind this Commission of Inquiry (COI) are not actually to investigate human rights abuses, but to show utter contempt and hatred for the nation of Israel.
At the UNHRC in Geneva just last week on June 7th, the probe’s chairwoman Navi Pillay presented the 18-page report against Israel to the council, saying, “The occupation must end.”
A summary of the report posted on United Nations website says:
“The continued occupation by Israel of Palestinian territory and discrimination against Palestinians are the key root causes of the recurrent tensions, instability and protraction of conflict in the region.”
The Commission also identified “forced displacement, threats of forced displacement, demolitions, settlement construction and expansion, settler violence, and the blockade of Gaza as contributing factors to recurring cycles of violence.”
It is interesting to note that the language they use here is filled with grossly inaccurate terms that are based on false narratives of many decades. Terms like “occupation,” “forced displacements,” “settler violence,” and “cycles of violence,” clearly display either the ignorance or the blatant Israel-hatred of those conducting this Commission of Inquiry. Unfortunately in this case, since the UN frequently blames Israel for human rights abuses, it seems to be the latter. When you see these terms being used in the media when reporting on Israel, you can be sure that the news report is either biased or uninformed.
Thankfully, this latest attack against Israel from the UNHRC has not gone unnoticed, and is beginning to gain some opposition. Just this week, at the UNHRC, Israel garnered the support of 21 other UN nations, including the US, who opposed the COI. The US Ambassador to the UNHRC Michèle Taylor read out a statement against the report:
“We believe the nature of the COI established last May is further demonstration of long-standing, disproportionate attention given to Israel in the Council and must stop.”
“We continue to believe that this long-standing disproportionate scrutiny should end, and that the Council should address all human rights concerns, regardless of country, in an even-handed manner. Regrettably, we are concerned that the Commission of Inquiry will further contribute to the polarization of a situation about which so many of us are concerned.”
This statement was signed by Austria, Bulgaria, Brazil, Canada, Cameroon, Colombia, Croatia, Eswatini, Germany, Guatemala, Hungary, Israel, Liberia, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nauru, Netherlands, North Macedonia, Palau, Togo, the UK, and the US. Even though most of these countries are not a part of the UN Human Rights Council, their support will count for much when the Commission of Inquiry brings their report to the UN General Assembly later this year.
Also, in the United States Congress, a bill seeking to disband this same COI is starting to gain steam. Earlier this year, Rep. Greg Steube (R-Fla.) introduced the bill: “Seeking to abolish the probe and combat the systematic anti-Israel bias at the United Nations Human Rights Council.” The bill, called the “COI Elimination Act,” also seeks to cut back on Washington’s annual contributions to the Council. Currently the United States is the largest sponsor of the UNHRC and accounts for over 20% of its budget.
When Stuebe introduced the bill in March, he said: “The ongoing anti-Israel commission formed by the U.N.’s discredited Human Rights Council directly obstructs peace in the Middle East and intentionally targets the only democracy in the region. Our U.S. tax dollars have no place funding an anti-Israel commission.”
Since then, the proposed legislation has garnered the support of 34 members of Congress, including seven Democrats. That is a good start, but we want as many members of Congress as possible to support this bill seeking to combat Israel-hatred at the UNHRC. Here is something you can take action on, in fighting against anti-Israel rhetoric on the international stage. Call or email your Congressional representatives for your state, and tell them that the UN’s Commission of Inquiry against Israel is biased, unjust, and their disproportionate scrutiny on Israel is clearly anti-semitic. Tell them that you are against US tax dollars funding an organization (the UNHRC) that has a long standing history of anti-Israel rhetoric. Also ask them to look into and support the “COI Elimination Act.”
Even though this may seem like something small and insignificant, every chance we get to fight against the pervasive wave of anti-Israel propaganda that is sweeping the globe is the perfect opportunity to take your love and support for Israel to the next level. As the world grows more and more anti-semitic, we have the opportunity to speak out for truth, and declare that as Christians, we are not going to sit quietly by while the international community continually bashes Israel.