There’s always money for Israel-bashing and antisemitism at the UN

No country should be interested in aiding and abetting the agenda of the hypocritical UN Human Rights Council

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas addresses the 74th session of the United Nations General Assembly at U.N. headquarters in New York City, New York, U.S. (photo credit: REUTERS/LUCAS JACKSON)
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas addresses the 74th session of the United Nations General Assembly at U.N. headquarters in New York City, New York, U.S.
(photo credit: REUTERS/LUCAS JACKSON)
On January 15, Michelle Bachelet, the former Chilean president now heading the UN’s Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, made a desperate plea for funding. She demanded an outrageous $375.5 million to support her agency, the bureaucratic arm of the notoriously antisemitic and anti-Israel UN Human Rights Council.
This demand was more than double what the office had received in 2019, even though she lamented that in recent years funding has been decreased and greater restrictions were placed on her activities.
The UN funding crisis is palpable on the ground at Bachelet’s home base in Geneva, where elevator and escalator service has even been limited for financial reasons. The upcoming March session of the council will be abbreviated due to the inability to service meetings between noon and 3 p.m.
Despite the funding crisis and the meeting restrictions, one area where Bachelet and the Human Rights Council are not pinching pennies is the obsessive focus on attacking Israel. As is well known, Israel is the only country subjected to a standing agenda item at the dictator-controlled council.
This March, however, not only will Israel be bashed during the Item 7 debates, but Bachelet has also authorized another anti-Israel debate under Item 2. And during the June session, her office has decided to add another section to Item 7 to increase the attacks.
Bachelet also decided to pile on Israel by releasing a highly controversial boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) blacklist of companies that her office claims are supposedly involved in “settlements.” Set aside that many of the companies are carrying out activities mandated by the UN-witnessed bilateral Oslo Peace Accords, providing counter-terrorism protection, and offering consumer goods and services to both Israelis and Palestinians alike.
Bachelet decided that throwing her and the UN’s weight to the antisemitic BDS movement was more important than preserving the human rights and livelihoods of the employees of these companies and of the customers they represent. Her zeal to publish this defamatory list occurred even though the earmarked funding for this project expired in March 2018, and it is unclear that the UN budget office authorized any additional funding.
Bachelet’s endorsement of the discriminatory BDS movement and facilitating the ongoing singling out of Israel by the Human Rights Council, a violation of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance definition of antisemitism, is clear proof that countries that care about promoting universal human rights and upholding the UN Charter should reject her pleas for more money.
No country should be interested in aiding and abetting the agenda of the hypocritical UN Human Rights Council or in supporting the UN agency that is complicit in carrying out the council’s destructive policies.

The writer is the legal adviser and UN liaison for NGO Monitor, a Jerusalem-based research institute.