Friday, July 31, 2009

Israel ranked close to bottom of latest “Global Peace Index” with human rights ranking on a par with North Korea and Iran

By Robin Shepherd
Think Tank Blog

The global NGO community is at it again. According to this year’s Global Peace Index, released by the widely respected Vision of Humanity grouping, Israel ranks 141 out of 144 countries surveyed. Only Somalia, Afghanistan and Iraq are ranked lower. In terms of human rights, Israel is ranked at the same level as North Korea and Iran. Indeed, apart from Iran and Yemen, all of the countries in the Middle East are given a higher ranking.

The index draws its inspiration from a United Nations initiative in 1999 when, according to the report’s authors, “the UN General Assembly launched a programme of action to build a “culture of peace” for the world’s children, which envisaged working towards a positive peace of justice, tolerance and plenty.” No real mystery then over what is about to follow.

The rankings are constructed out of 23 indicators of internal and external peace. These include factors such as the number of conflicts fought over the last five years, the potential for terrorism, ease of access to weapons, and human rights. Each category is graded on a scale of one to five, where one is the best score and five the worst.

Ostensibly, the survey is a value-neutral study which highlights objective realities about a nation’s predicament. The top ranked country in the study is New Zealand which makes sense given the nation’s remoteness and the absence of violent neighbours. Israel, a country under the constant threat of terrorism and living under the shadow of countries such as Iran which call for its destruction, would, logically enough, be given a relatively low ranking.

But this survey is anything but value-neutral, as closer inspection of its attitudes to human rights makes abundantly clear.

Israel was given a four point ranking in this category — the second worst possible and on a par with North Korea and Iran. Even more absurdly, Saudi Arabia’s ranking on human rights was actually higher than Israel’s. Saudi got a score of 3.5, as did China.

According to the report’s methodology, in category 4 countries, “murders, disappearances and torture are a common part of life.” If you look even deeper into the survey, it becomes clear precisely who is behind this. The report says that its human rights segment was based on, “A qualitative measure of the level of political terror through an analysis of Amnesty International’s Yearbook.”
(For full article)

1 comment:

  1. B"H

    Messiah is near: The nations unite against Jerusalem