For those who are home, and for those who are on the way. For those who support the historic and just return of the land of Israel to its people, forever loyal to their inheritance, and its restoration.
Among the first things the Obama administration did to break from the “unilateral” policies of the Bush administration was to join the United Nations Human Rights Council, which the U.S. shunned when it was formed in 2006. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton promised that “we will engage in the work of improving the U.N. human rights system.” U.N. ambassador Susan Rice declared that we were joining “because we believe that working from within, we can make the council a more effective forum to promote and protect human rights.”
Now, almost a year and a half later, the Council remains as it ever was: a body composed of some of the worst human rights abusers in the world, devoted to attacking Western democracies, demonizing Israel, covering up the abuses of authoritarian regimes, and undermining the pursuit of human rights. The only difference today is that America’s name is being lent to this effort.
The administration’s desire for cooperation and engagement at the U.N. has led to acquiescence and even active involvement in a number of unsavory proceedings. The United States co-sponsored a “freedom of expression” resolution with a dictatorship, Egypt, which in effect endorses the suppression of free speech. When Libya and other authoritarians were elected to the Council, Ambassador Rice refused to say whether the U.S. had opposed their admission. When the Syrian representative claimed that Israeli children “sing merrily as they go to school, and, I quote, ‘With my teeth I will rip your flesh. With my mouth I will suck your blood,’” the U.S. representative made no protest. This summer, the U.S. voted for a resolution that seemed to absolve Iran of human rights abuses.
One of the Council’s flagship projects has been promoting the Goldstone Report on last year’s war in Gaza between Israel and Hamas. The Council is now pushing forward with a second phase that seeks to “implement” the findings of the report. This new effort will attack the very legitimacy of the Israeli legal system and declare Israel unfit to conduct its own investigations, opening the door to the involvement of the International Criminal Court.
I visited Hevron in November 2000 after the outbreak of the Rosh Hashanah War to see what could be done to assist in the face of the growing daily attacks on the community. After returning to work for the community in the summer of 2001, a bond and a love was forged that grows to this day. My wife Melody and I merited to be married at Ma'arat HaMachpela and now host visitors from throughout the world every Shabbat as well as during the week. Our goal, "Time to come Home!"