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US Says Falk ‘Unfit to Serve,’ Chucks his Bid to Expel UN Watch

“Sunlight is the best disinfectant … and that’s why Falk wants to shut us down."
Richard Falk, UN special rapporteur on Palestinian human rights.

Richard Falk, UN special rapporteur on Palestinian human rights.

In a scathing and unprecedented attack on a UN-accredited NGO, top UN Human Rights Council official Richard Falk publicly called on the 47-nation body to investigate and potentially expel the watchdog organization UN Watch, after it mobilized world leaders—including his own boss, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon—to condemn his comments blaming the Boston Marathon bombings on “the American global domination project” and “Tel Aviv.”

In his just-released annual report, Falk—the controversial human rights monitor tasked by the Council with investigating “Israel’s violations of the principles and bases of international law” in the Palestinian territories—accuses UN Watch, a Geneva-based human rights group that fights antisemitism and anti-Israel bias, with “demeaning” and “defaming” his character, damaging the “credibility,” “effectiveness,” and “substantive intention” of his mandate, all of which “diverts attention from the message” and “shifts public interest away.”

UN Watch was established in 1993 “to monitor the performance of the United Nations by the yardstick of its own Charter,” according to the group’s website.

“Sunlight is the best disinfectant, wrote Justice Brandeis, and that’s why Falk wants to shut us down—so his despicable abuses can proliferate in the dark,” said UN Watch executive director Hillel Neuer.

In Falk’s report, as well as in intense lobbying efforts that he conducted this week as reported by UN insiders, the Council official demands that UN Watch “be investigated” to determine whether it qualifies as a genuine NGO.

“We call on UN Secretary Ban Ki-moon to denounce Richard Falk’s McCarthy-style attempt to have rogue regimes conduct a retaliatory ‘investigation’ of UN Watch, as a punishment for successfully exposing his gross misconduct,” said Neuer.

“Falk is dangerously trying to intimidate and silence the UN’s only watchdog group, to grant himself impunity while he continues to exculpate terrorist groups and make other inflammatory remarks that contradict the UN’s founding principles,” Neuer. added

Falk’s comments come less than a month after UN Watch’s draft resolution to remove him from his position in the wake of his comments blaming the Boston Marathon bombings on “the American global domination project” and “Tel Aviv” was published by the United Nations as an official document.

In his annual report, Falk slams what he calls Israel’s continued occupation of the Palestinians:

“Israel continues to annex Palestinian territory; Israel persists in demolishing Palestinians’ homes and populating Palestine with Israeli citizens; Israel maintains a policy of collectively punishing 1.75 million Palestinians through its imposition of a blockade on the Gaza Strip; and Israel prosecutes its occupation with impunity, refusing to accept the world’s calls to respect international law,” he wrote.

Falk also repeats his prior call for a boycott of companies conducting business with Israel or Israelis in Judea and Samaria.

The U.S. representative to the Human Rights Council, Eileen Chamberlain Donahoe, on Friday condemned Falk’s report and called on other member states of the council to “denounce Falk and his outrageous abuse of the position he holds.”

Abraham Foxman, the national director of the Anti-Defamation League, said his organization agrees with Donahoe’s conclusion that Falk “is unfit to serve in his role as a UN special rapporteur.”

“If he does not leave voluntarily, the Human Rights Council should remove him, Foxman said, adding: “Mr. Falk’s attempt to paint himself as the victim of an Israeli government-sponsored defamation campaign, carried out by UN Watch, has echoes of classical anti-Semitic conspiracy theories.”

“We are in good company, however, given that Falk’s report also accuses Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon of being ‘complicit’ with UN Watch for having condemned his ‘preposterous’ comments, in 2011 and again last month.” Neuer said.

Falk wrote that “it seems important to encourage a greater willingness on the part of senior United Nations officials to defend special rapporteurs subject to such diversionary attacks.”

Falk’s report claims that UN Watch’s “smear campaign” is carried out in “numerous settings, including at the Human Rights Council, as well as university venues where the Special Rapporteur gives lectures.”

The “smears” have been “sent to diplomats and United Nations officials, including the Secretary-General, who has apparently accepted the allegations at face value, issuing public criticism of the Special Rapporteur… with no effort to seek the views of the Special Rapporteur.”

In his report, Falk’s ninth and final recommendation is for the Human Rights Council to “establish a mechanism to support Special Rapporteurs who are subject to defamatory attacks, especially those that divert attention from the substantive human rights concerns relevant to their respective mandates.”

UN Watch and JTA content was used in this report.

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9 Responses to “US Says Falk ‘Unfit to Serve,’ Chucks his Bid to Expel UN Watch”

  1. Eran Spiro says:

    Please be kind to Richard Falk prior to removing him from his current position on the Human Rights Commission. Investigate every familial connection and financial connections and you will discover why this despicable person is so anti-Israeli.

  2. Charlie Hall says:

    Kudos to the Obama adminstration for calling out this rasha.

  3. At least the JP admits to allowing a thuggish propaganda network to write its "news" — so there's one accurate statement above. Anyone who wants to see the actual comments of Dr. Falk — one of the most intellectually and morally distinguished human rights observers in the world, in my view — will find them here: http://www.foreignpolicyjournal.com/2013/04/21/a-commentary-on-the-marathon-murders/.

    As any reader can see, the statements attributed to Falk's commentary by the so-called UN Watch is sheer fabrication.

    The JP can apologize for reprinting these slanders, or it can confess to being a warmongering propaganda mill rather than a news outlet.

  4. Correction: should be "are sheer fabrications."

  5. Mario S Nusbaum says:

    Sheer fabrication Michael ????????????????? What's YOUR interpretation of:

    " Can we not expect one among our politicians, other than the Tea Party darling Rand Paul, to have the courage to connect some of these dots"
    The dots are American actions in Afghanistan and Pakistan and the Boston bombing

    "The American global domination project is bound to generate all kinds of resistance in the post-colonial world. In some respects, the United States has been fortunate not to experience worse blowbacks, and these may yet happen, especially if there is no disposition to rethink US relations to others in the world, starting with the Middle East."
    Isn't this saying that the bombing were due to the "American global domination project" whatever this is?

    Isn't it obvious that this one of the most intellectually and morally distinguished human rights observers in the world is a ferocious anit-semite? No? OK, so explain us what he meant by:

    " The war drums are beating at this moment in relation to both North Korea and Iran, and as long as Tel Aviv has the compliant ear of the American political establishment, those who wish for peace and justice in the world should not rest easy."

    " including the adoption of a far more balanced approach to the Palestine/Israel impasse"

    "especially given the strong pushback by Israel and its belligerent leader, Bibi Netanyahu, were a series of disappointing reactions by Obama"

    " it seems that Obama has given up altogether, succumbing to the Beltway ethos of Israel First."

  6. It is not surprising, because this is the way it works, that there is no mention that UN Watch is the spawn of the American Jewish Committee, the unofficial "state department" of the pro-Israel establishment, which not only echos the policies of the Netanyahu government but has spent most of its time since the Iraq war in lobbying governments around the world to support a military attack on Iran if Israel "feels" that is necessary. UN Watch simply functions as a guardian of Israeli interests in the UN which, as its name implies, is unique. It needs to be sent packing.

  7. Myriam Obadia says:

    I don't know where you got the idea that the American Jewish Committee is "the unofficial 'state department' of the pro-Israel establishment", but if it were the case, it would only be a form of redress for the ingrained anti-Israel prejudice of the actual US State Department. For decades now, the US Congress has voted periodically -with a bipartisan overwhelming majority- for the US Embassy in Israel to be moved to Jerusalem and, for decades, every single US president has caved into the demand of the State Department not to comply with the will of the People of the US expressed through their Congress.

  8. Myriam Obadia says:

    Dear Michael, if Dr. Falk is indeed the incorruptible intellectual and human rights advocate you deem him to be, how comes he has never been heard condemning the bombing of Israeli civilians with the same enthusiasm as he does the checkpoints in the disputed territories? As a matter of facts, how comes he doesn't object to the actual Apartheid suffered by Palestinians in Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, and Egypt or the tortures, imprisonment, and discrimination suffered by Christian Palestinians at the hand of the Hamas? Is Palestinian suffering not worthy of notice when Jews cannot be blamed for it? Why not a word on the several hundred thousands Syrian victims of the Hassad regime and the Al Qaeda infiltrated opposition? What about the Caucasian Muslims suffering under the Russian Imperialism or the Uighur people under the Chinese domination? Are Muslim deaths only a crime when they happen at the hand of the "West"? Ask yourself those questions honestly, then review your opinions once you have shed your prejudices and Zionist conspiration fixation.

  9. First, Myriam, the AJC considers itself to be the Lobby's state department as others close to it have described it. Most of its time is spent on delegations to foreign countries lobbying for Israel and it even has its Trans-Atlantic institute in Brussels where it can influence the EU which is based there. As for Congress, it is Israel's most important occupied territory and two years ago, when it gave Netanyahu 29 standing ovations three days after he had dressed down the president of the US as if he was as an errant schoolboy, federal marshals should have arrested the lot of them and held the largest treason trial in American history. Most Americans don't give a damn for either side in the Israel-Palestine conflict and thanks to the media, which is also dominated and/or intimidated by the Jewish establishment, there are no reports of, for example, the Senate voting 99-0 on a resolution, May 22, that would have the US supporting Israel militarily if it decided to attack Iran, another act of collective treason, putting the sovereignty of the US and the lives of its people in the hands of a foreign country.

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