It wasn’t bad enough that Israel backed down from its principled position of boycotting the United Nations Human Rights Council because that body relentlessly and virtually exclusively hunts down the Jewish state for opprobrium. And Israel did this, albeit at the last possible minute, knowing that the HRC would attack Israel as soon as the Jewish State came within its sights.
But on Tuesday, Oct. 29, Israel was the one soiling itself before those in the UN’s star chamber even got a chance to get in their first whacks.
Yesterday, The Jewish Press and other media outlets reported that Israel chose to appear before the UN HRC for the Universal Periodic Review, which it had been boycotting for 18 months due to the HRC’s relentless attacks on and double standard towards the Jewish state.
Today, October 29, when Israel presented its human rights record to the HRC, which is the first step in the UPR process, it seemed to prove it has bought into the corrupt, demonizing ethos of the HRC. Israel presented its worst acts of betrayal against its own people as evidence of proof that it is serious about peace.
Yes, the shameful act of releasing convicted murderers and those who tried their best to murder Jews as a “good will gesture” to the political entities who encourage those murders, was held up as proof by the Israel’s representative to the HRC, Eviatar Manor, that Israel seeks peace. His words:
All of them have blood on their hands; all of them have murdered Israelis. Their release, I believe, illustrates Israel’s determination to reach an agreement with our Palestinian neighbors that will, once and for all, end the conflict.
Just so readers of The Jewish Press are not confused, we’ll repeat it again. The Israeli envoy to the UN HRC in Geneva presented Israel’s release back into the wild of what is planned eventually to be more than 100 murderers of Jews as proof that Israel wants peace.
More unrepentant murderers out there on the loose means peace is close to the hearts of the Israeli government, in UNspeak, and Israel is now speaking that language as well.
But just in case anyone thought that Israel’s self-flagellation was enough pummeling of Israel for one HRC session, you can rest comfortably because more than 75 other member nations lined up to also vilify Israel.
The Ambassador from “Palestine,” Ibrahim Khraishi, was one of the first to get in his digs.
“I think Israel only understands the language of pressure,” Khraishi said. He demanded that Israel withdraw from the eastern part of Jerusalem and the disputed territories, although those were not the terms Khraishi used.
Of particular significance was Khraishi’s comment about the release of Arab prisoners from Israel’s prisons. No, Khraishi did not praise Israel’s peace bona fides, but instead demanded that all Arab Palestinian prisoners be released from Israeli prisons.
“We would also like to see Israel release all Palestinian prisoners from Israeli prisons, because Israel has no justification for keeping them in Israeli prisons,” the “Palestinian” Ambassador said to the exalted body.
Got that? Israel has no right to hold convicted murderers of its citizens in its prisons. And it is Israel that is permanently in the dock, not the political entity which creates and celebrates those murderers.
In addition to “Palestine,” HRC representatives from Switzerland, Egypt and the NGO Human Rights Watch were among the many who harshly criticized the Jewish state during Tuesday’s session.
And just to recall why it is that Israel initially boycotted the HRC: Israel has been the recipient of more critical resolutions from the HRC than any other country. In addition, Israel is the only country to which the HRC has assigned a permanent investigator.
The final major insult which Israel dared to complain about is that on every HRC agenda there is “Agenda Item 7.” Agenda Item 7 mandates that in every UN HRC session, member states must debate Israeli human rights violations in what it refers to as the “Palestinian territories.”
And now Israel itself has categorized as evidence of its work on behalf of furthering peace and supporting human rights: releasing convicted murderers of Jews.
About the Author: Lori Lowenthal Marcus is the US correspondent for The Jewish Press. She is a recovered lawyer who previously practiced First Amendment law and taught in Philadelphia-area graduate and law schools.
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