Wednesday, February 21, 2024

The Ignominious Thirteen

Say their names.

There are fifteen members of the United Nations Security Council, of which five are permanent: China, France, Russia Federation, the United Kingdom, and the United States of America. There are ten temporary members: Algeria, Ecuador, Guyana, Japan, Malta, Mozambique, Republic of Korea, Sierra Leone, Slovenia, and Switzerland.

Name them because 13 of the 15 now have voted to continue the war in Gaza. Those 13 have sided with Hamas. And those 13 have endorsed hostage-taking. The USA vetoed the resolution at the UN Security Council which demanded an immediate cease-fire while the United Kingdom abstained.

There is an alternative to the Algerian-sponsored resolution which gained overwhelming support in the Security Council but failed upon the veto of a permanent member. As reported by CNN, last week a meeting in Cairo which included top-level intelligence chiefs from the US, Israel (and) Egypt and the Qatari prime minster... failed to achieve a breakthrough." The USA opposed the terrorist-friendly resolution because, as White House National Security Council spokesman John Kirby explained after the vote, "we just weren't able to support a resolution today that was going to put sensitive negotiations in peril- and that's what we believe this resolution would do."

The USA has circulated a draft of a resolution which has circulated an alternative draft resolution which NBC explains "instead calls for a temporary pause in the fighting as part of hostage negotiations and opposes any ground operation in Rafah."

That would not represent a surrender by Israel, only an acknowledgment of defeat, a far less reprehensible outcome.  By contrast, the resolution vetoed by the USA demanded that Israel lay down its arms and rest on the goodwill of bloodthirsty terrorists to release the hostages they hold. It would in effect have stopped a democratic nation from ridding itself of the greatest threat to its existence. 

Diplomacy is continuing and there is at least a possibility of the return of a significant number of hostages.  It is, as the United Kingdom seems to understand, to permit the world's greatest superpower to forge with Egypt, on whose doorstep hundreds of thousands of Gazans sit, a deal not completely one-sided. We now know that, left to their own devices, the Contemptible 13 would have none of it.  

Israel is not satisfied to play the victim. Yet to much of the world, Israel is acceptable only when it is the victim. If it responds in the same manner any other nation would to an effort to wipe it out, that's going too far and the men, women, and children held hostage become mere irritants whose lives are expendable.

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