De­spite 87 votes, UNGA fails to cen­sure Ha­mas

The Jerusalem Post - - FRONT PAGE - • By HERB KEINON

Is­rael hailed as a his­toric achieve­ment the sup­port of 87 mem­ber states at the United Na­tions Gen­eral As­sem­bly for a res­o­lu­tion con­demn­ing Ha­mas, even though it fell short of the two-third ma­jor­ity needed for its pas­sage. by US Am­bas­sador to the UN Nikki Ha­ley who said that the world body’s fail­ure to con­demn the clear ter­ror­ism of Ha­mas is noth­ing less than an­tisemitism, was doomed when a res­o­lu­tion put for­ward by Bo­livia ne­ces­si­tat­ing a two-thirds ma­jor­ity for the res­o­lu­tion to be adopted was ap­proved by three votes: 75 to 72, with 26 ab­sten­tions.

Among the coun­tries that voted for the need for a twothirds ma­jor­ity, or ab­stained, thereby al­low­ing it to pass, were Ar­gentina, Brazil, Gu­atemala, Switzer­land, Nor­way and New Zealand.

Ha­ley said that the de­mand for a two-thirds ma­jor­ity was noth­ing less than a dou­ble stan­dard, since no such de­mand was made last week when the UN passed six res­o­lu­tions con­demn­ing Is­rael

“There is noth­ing more an­tisemitic than say­ing that ter­ror­ism is not ter­ror­ism when it is used against the Jewish peo­ple and the Jewish state,” she said. “There is noth­ing more an­tisemitic than say­ing we can­not con­demn ter­ror­ism against Is­rael, while we would not hes­i­tate for one minute to con­demn the same acts if they were taken against any other coun­try.”

Among those coun­tries who were not among the 87 were some coun­tries with whom Ne­tanyahu has forged close ties such as In­dia, Ethiopia and Kenya, who all ab­stained. In ad­di­tion, two coun­tries with whom Is­rael has close mil­i­tary ties – Azer­bai­jan and Viet­nam – voted against.

On the other hand, Brazil, which until Jair Bol­sonaro was elected as pres­i­dent in Oc­to­ber could have been counted on to vote against Is­rael, voted with it this time around. And Chad, whose pres­i­dent vis­ited Is­rael for the first time two weeks ago, did not vote, a sig­nif­i­cant shift from that coun­try’s anti-Is­rael vot­ing pat­tern for decades.

In an im­pas­sioned state­ment be­fore the vote, Ha­ley said that “to­day would be a his­toric day in the United Na­tions, or it could be just an­other or­di­nary day.”

An or­di­nary day, she said, would be to pass an­other res­o­lu­tion con­demn­ing Is­rael, which it did six times last week and 500 times over the

Nauert will earn the same de­vo­tion and rev­er­ence from Is­rael and the Jewish com­mu­nity. • years -- and an­other time later in the day. A his­toric day would be adopt­ing a res­o­lu­tion against Ha­mas.

Ha­ley said the res­o­lu­tion did not com­ment on the specifics of a peace agree­ment, which hun­dreds of res­o­lu­tions have done in the past, but rather it “stands for a foun­da­tional el­e­ment of peace: the re­jec­tion of ter­ror­ism, be­cause we all know that there would be no peace with­out mu­tual agree­ment that ter­ror­ism is un­ac­cept­able.”

Af­ter not­ing that Ha­mas’s char­ter calls for Is­rael’s de­struc­tion, she ticked off Ha­mas’ ter­ror record from the sui­cide bomb­ings of the 1990s and the 2000’s, through the indis­crim­i­nate rocket fire from Gaza on Is­raeli civil­ians, and the launch­ing of flam­ing kites and bal­loons some­times em­bla­zoned with Nazi sym­bols.

If this was not enough of a rea­son to con­demn Ha­mas, Ha­ley said, then the or­ga­ni­za­tion should be con­demned for the suf­fer­ing it has in­flicted on the Pales­tini­ans it gov­erns.

“Peace must be built on truth,” Ha­ley said. “I want to take a per­sonal mo­ment and ask my Arab brothers and sis­ters, is the ha­tred that strong? Is there ha­tred to­ward Is­rael so strong that you will de­fend a ter­ror­ist or­ga­ni­za­tion, one that is di­rectly caus­ing harm to the Pales­tinian peo­ple. Isn’t it time to let that go?”

De­spite the con­tacts Is­rael has forged with many Arab coun­tries, they voted as one against the res­o­lu­tion, with their spokes­men --in­clud­ing the rep­re­sen­ta­tive from Saudi Ara­bia -- strongly con­demn­ing Is­rael in terms rem­i­nis­cent of years past, be­fore there was any co­op­er­a­tion be­tween the coun­tries.

Af­ter the vote, Is­rael’s Am­bas­sador Danny Danon took the floor at the UN and said, “To­day we achieved a plu­ral­ity.

That plu­ral­ity would have been a ma­jor­ity if the vote had not been hi­jacked by a political move of pro­ce­dure. But in one strong, coura­geous voice, we have brought Ha­mas to jus­tice.”

Danon said that those mem­ber states that re­jected this res­o­lu­tion “should be ashamed of your­selves.”

“Wait when you will have to deal with ter­ror­ism in your own coun­tries,” eh said. “Your si­lence in the face of evil re­veals your true col­ors. It tells us what side you are re­ally on: a side that does not care for the lives of in­no­cent Is­raelis and in­no­cent Pales­tini­ans who have fallen vic­tim to the ter­ror­ists of Ha­mas. Those who en­dorse ter­ror­ism to­day will be forced to face its deadly con­se­quences to­mor­row.”

Danon also took aim at those coun­tries who “sat on the side­lines in an at­tempt to ap­pear ‘neu­tral or ‘ob­jec­tive’,” and ei­ther ab­stained or did not cast a vote.

“Let me be clear. There is no such thing here as neu­tral­ity. There is no such thing as ‘both sides,’” he said. “There is no moral equiv­a­lency. There is a ter­ror­ist or­ga­ni­za­tion that en­dan­gers civil­ians fla­grantly vi­o­lat­ing the law and there is a state that pro­tects them. To­day, the ma­jor­ity of the in­ter­na­tional com­mu­nity has ex­posed Ha­mas. Oth­ers have turned a blind eye.”

Is­rael’s mis­sion a the UN put out a state­ment af­ter the vote call­ing it a “his­toric achieve­ment.”

“For the first time in the his­tory of the United Na­tions, a record num­ber of coun­tries sup­ported a Gen­eral As­sem­bly res­o­lu­tion con­demn­ing Ha­mas,” the state­ment read.

Tovah Lazaroff con­trib­uted to this re­port. •

(Mike Se­gar/Reuters)

US AM­BAS­SADOR to the UN Nikki Ha­ley ad­dresses a UN Gen­eral As­sem­bly meeting in New York re­cently.

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