I have been speaking against the United Nations for decades. I did not do so out of ignorance. Aside from having taken a number of courses on the UN in college, I was a senior NCO with the Israeli Defense Forces Liaison to UN Forces (Lebanon) for a year and Liaison to UN Forces (Golan Heights) for another six months. Additionally, I long suspected there was a room, or at least a filing cabinet somewhere in the UN headquarters in New York City dedicated to complaints against me. My understanding of that organization is non minimal and it is not second-hand.
Over the past few years I have curbed my commentary, especially in writing, because I felt that it could, in some cases, hamper my professional development. ‘Don’t be political, it can only offend people who decide on jobs and promotions.’ For the most part, I have stayed quiet.
Today I cannot… I will not stay quiet.
Are you kidding me?
Let me give a little context to how absurd this charge is:
Saudi Arabia, where women were only recently given the right to drive a car, where it is illegal for a woman to be alone anywhere with a male non-relative, and where a woman who goes out in public without wearing an abaya (think of a tent with eye holes) might be stoned, voted in favour of this resolution.
Egypt, China, Sudan, and Yemen, where human rights are seldom respected, voted in favour of this resolution.
India, where incidents of women getting gang-raped on public busses hardly makes the news anymore, voted in favour of this resolution.
Iran, whose recent leaders have only been considered slightly moderate when compared to the mad man Mahmoud Ahmadinejad but in truth are still mostly interested in developing nuclear weapons and supporting terrorism so that the Little Satan should never sleep peacefully, voted in favour of this resolution.
Who else? Andorra, Angola, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Benin, Cambodia, Colombia, Denmark, Ecuador, El Salvador, Ethiopia, France, Ghana, Ireland, Japan, Kenya, Luxembourg, Mali, Malta, Morocco, Netherlands, Norway, Pakistan, Paraguay, Philippines, South Korea, Russia, St. Vincent, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Uruguay, and Venezuela all voted in favour of this resolution. That brings the total to forty nations condemning Israel.
So that they might look slightly less hypocritical and racist than their bolder brethren, nine countries abstained. These feckless cowards are Brazil, Cameroon, Germany, Jamaica, Mexico, Romania, Togo, Ukraine, and the United Kingdom. A total of nine nations refusing to stand up and call this resolution utterly ridiculous.
Only two nations on the ECOSOC – two out of fifty-one nations – stood up and said ‘Are you kidding? We refuse to put our signatures on that absurd statement.’ Who are they? It is not difficult to guess… Canada and the United States.
I am an Israeli citizen of Canadian birth who is currently a resident of the United States. I get around. I have seen oppression, I have seen the rights of people violated. I have seen women oppressed by governments and by groups and by corporations and other organizations. In Israel, to the best of my knowledge, there are no civilian jobs that are not accessible to women, with the exception of orthodox rabbi (which has nothing to do with Israel and is the purview of the religion). Women are allowed to do everything that men are allowed to do. They sit in the government and have risen to the seat of Prime Minister. They run corporations, they run organizations large and small… and they are allowed to go anywhere they want – on foot or behind the wheel of a car – alone, in a group, wearing anything they want (and if you have ever seen pictures of the night life and beaches in Tel-Aviv, you will know that they do exactly that).
The world has condemned Israel for many things, and I am not going to say that we are perfect. However most of the reasons we are condemned are pure racism – we are condemned for defending ourselves because it is the traditional role of Jews to die without putting up a fight. Israel is condemned for its treatment of people whose stated goal is our annihilation. It is condemned for closing its borders and building a wall when the people on the other side of that border regularly cross into the country, strap bombs to themselves, and blow up busses, night clubs, pizzerias, and other places where civilians congregate. It is condemned for retaliating against missiles that were stored in and launched from buildings that were supposed to be hospitals and civilian locations. Okay, fine… but to condemn Israel as the only nation on earth that violates women’s rights? That is like saying that the one hockey player who wouldn’t drop his gloves to fight should be penalized for being out of uniform when everyone else was bare-knuckled.
If you are going to boycott, divest, and sanction Israel go ahead… but stop being hypocrites. Go all the way… boycott all of the technology that was invented or perfected in Israel (that includes your cell phone and computer, along with the networks they communicate on, by the way)… boycott all of the medicines and vaccines. Do you have a rooftop solar powered hot-water system? Disconnect it, it’s Israeli. Drip irrigation? Forget about it, Israeli. Pill cameras and tiny endoscopes to check your digestive tract and bowels? No, they’ll cut you open using a non-Israeli technique to see what’s wrong with you because those inventions are Israeli. Drugs to treat Parkinson’s and Multiple Sclerosis? Sorry, those are Israeli too. USB flash drives? Israeli. The Intel 8088 (the first CPU that powered the IBM PC) was invented by Intel’s Haifa laboratories. Voice over IP (VoIP)? STOP!!! A big Israeli invention.
I could keep going, but the list would be too long. By the way, many of these inventions were invented by women. Israeli women. Women who are not oppressed. Women who have the same rights as men. Women who serve in the Army in almost every job you can imagine. Women who go to university and women who will give as good as they get in any conversation… and yes, women who will slap you hard if you say something or do something that is highly inappropriate. Israeli women don’t take guff off anyone, and if you think that it would be easy to violate their rights then you just don’t know Israeli women.
If you are going to hate Israel then there is nothing that I can say or do or write that will change your mind… but you know what? Every time I relax on my disrespect of the United Nations they seem to step up to remind me why I disrespect them. You want to tell me about violating the rights of women? Well UN, you have not had the moral authority to tell me baseball scores since the 1960s.