Tag Archive for United Nations

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Saudis Eye Human Rights Chair

King Salman the President and First Lady to a reception room at Erga Palace during a state visit to Saudi Arabia on Jan. 27, 2015. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Despite an abysmal human rights record, Saudi Arabia reportedly hopes to chair the UN’s Human Rights Council, a test of how far money can go in buying the world’s silence and acquiescence, as Jonathan Marshall describes.

Sacrificing Yemen to Appease Saudis

map-yemen

In pandering to the Saudi royals, President Obama has tolerated and even aided their aerial pummeling of their poverty-stricken neighbor Yemen. But the Saudi rush to bomb the Houthis may have destroyed a promising UN peace accord — and killed hundreds of civilians, writes Joe Lauria.

The Mysterious Death of a UN Hero

United Nations Secretary-General Dag Hammarskjold.

From the Archive: In reopening the investigation into the mysterious plane crash that killed UN Secretary General Dag Hammarskjold in 1961, the United Nations is appealing to member states to release long-secret files related to this cold case from a tense moment in the Cold War in Africa, which Lisa Pease examined in 2013.

Can Obama Untangle from Syria’s Civil War?

President Barack Obama speaking to the United Nations General Assembly on Sept. 24, 2013. (UN photo)

President Obama appears open to a UN strategy of negotiating local ceasefires in Syria as a step toward a political solution to that civil war, but he remains tangled in the demand from Israel, Saudi Arabia and other U.S. allies for “regime change” in Damascus, writes Gareth Porter.

Shielding Israel’s Secret Nukes

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at the United Nations in 2012, drawing his own "red line" on how far he will let Iran go in refining nuclear fuel.

A glaring case of hypocrisy is that the U.S. government berates Iran for a non-weaponized nuclear program while fighting to protect Israel’s large, sophisticated and undeclared nuclear arsenal, a double standard that led the Obama administration to oppose a nuclear-free Mideast, as ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar describes.

Why US Balks at Accord on Children’s Rights

Afghan children await school supplies from Allied forces at Sozo School in Kabul. (French navy photo by Master Petty Officer Valverde)

With its powerful political-media apparatus, America’s right wing can create hysteria over pretty much anything, even something as innocuous as a U.N. agreement on the rights of children, leaving the U.S. as one of only three countries not to ratify it a quarter century later, writes Joe Lauria.

US/Israeli Hypocrisy on Human Rights

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaking to the United Nations General Assembly on Oct. 1, 2013. (UN Photo by Evan Schneider)

After World War II, the U.S. government was the champion of international law and human rights, but a selective application of those rules – shielding U.S. actions and those of allies like Israel – has made a mockery of these universal principles, writes Lawrence Davidson.

Making Iran’s UN Envoy a Wedge Issue

Iranian Ambassador to the United Nations Hamid Aboutalebi.

America’s neocons and their allies want an escalating confrontation with Iran, not a negotiated solution to the nuclear issue. So they seek out hot buttons to anger Iran and make President Obama’s job harder, such as blocking Iran’s choice of UN ambassador, writes ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.

Does the Media Hate the Poor?

Ugoji Adanma Eze.

At a moment in history of unparalleled human wealth, the world confronts unprecedented poverty and even sharp declines in the middle classes of Western countries. But status-quo thinking by elites, including the U.S. media, obstruct solutions, says Danny Schechter.

The World Unites Behind Mandela

Nelson Mandela as a young African tribal leader.

President Obama’s speech at Nelson Mandela’s memorial service got the most attention, but the worldwide praise for the revolutionary leader who fought South Africa’s white supremacy was more significant, says Danny Schechter.