An eye-catching headline: “A U.S. Envoy Makes the Case for the U.N.”
In his speech, Mr. Churkin noted sardonically that just a few months ago, on the subject of Darfur in Sudan, he had been lectured about how war crimes charges should never be sacrificed for political reasons, according to two diplomats present, and now he was being told the opposite. Amnesty International called her position “deeply disappointing.”
Ms. Rice denied a double standard. The report had a lopsided focus on Israel, which is capable of investigating possible war crimes, while Sudan is not, she said.
So the U.S. exercises no hypocrisy in calling for war crimes charges elsewhere while supporting Israel’s massacre in Gaza because Israel can investigate itself (and, needless to say, find itself innocent).
As for the headline, what was her “case” that the U.N. “matters”?
“I happen to believe, as the president does, that our security and well-being as Americans are inextricably linked to the security and well-being of people elsewhere,” she said in an interview. “Indifference is costly in moral and humanitarian terms, and it’s costly in security terms.”
So we may draw the corollary of the headline.
Since the well-being of Americans is not inextricably linked to their security and well-being, Palestinians are apparently not “people”; a reiteration of Chaim Weizmann’s “democratic principle” excluding self-determination for the Arab Palestinians because they didn’t meet the qualifications for people-hood.
The U.S. is hardly “indifferent”, though, towards Palestinians. Rather than just doing nothing, it supports Israel’s crimes against them, very “costly in moral and humanitarian terms”, not to mention “in security terms” (e.g. 9/11).
So the U.N. “matters” once again after having been deemed irrelevant under the Bush Administration for not authorizing the use of force against Iraq. But the terms under which the U.N. “matters” now are precisely the same under which the U.N. was “irrelevant” then. The U.N. is fine when it serves our purpose.
The lesson could be expanded. One could write a headline “U.S. Makes the Case for Democracy” and quote endless rhetoric about supporting democratic ideals, and possibly even provide an example or two where the U.S. actually acted to do so. But the historical record is clear, and it continues. Democracy is fine, just so long as people choose the right leaders (meaning leaders acceptable to Washington). Otherwise, it’s a thing to be reviled. Palestine again provides a useful example, with the U.S.-backed Israeli massacre in Gaza being the culminating apex of punishing the Palestinians for voting the wrong way in elections.