Diplomacy Works

-

Yesterday, Belarus ran for a seat on the U.N. Human Rights Council – and lost badly.
A few weeks ago, a Belarussian victory was seen as inevitable. Thanks to some great work by a few human rights groups and engaged governments, the tables have been turned.
The performance of the Human Rights Council over the past year has left much to be desired, but Belarus’s bodes well for the Council’s future. With a little attention – and perhaps a Special Envoy – the U.S. can help bring credibility to the Human Rights Council.
— Scott Paul

Comments

12 comments on “Diplomacy Works

  1. Brigitte N. says:

    Let us hope that diplomacy finally works to start solving the Iraq problem. If the administration and congress (Democrats and Republicans) are serious in pushing the Iraq Study Group’s proposals, we can only hope that it is not too late to get a grip on the mass in Iraq and the Middle East situation.
    http://www.reflectivepundit.com/reflectivepundit/2007/05/finally_a_chanc.html

    Reply

  2. Kathleen says:

    We, the US gov’t, under this administration, have no credibility in the world, except with those who scoff at laws for profit too.
    But, We, the ordinary people of the US who do speak up, do have credibilty and should continue to participate through NGO’s or as individuals, whether or not the US is elected to serve on the body.
    We should also make our voices heard directly to the UN on many issues in many agencies. We can make it work, if we all pitch in to shoulder some part of the burden of rebuilding respect for the UN and helping it operate optimally.
    In the past, the Humans Rights Commisssion was a very effective body that did serious work. It met for 6 weeks each year and its Working Groups and SubCommission for the Prevention of Discrimination and Protection of Minorities met for 6 weeks each year.
    The US didn’t like it when its own human rights violations were called into scrutiny, so the whole body had to go. The new Human Rights Council is just a shell, meeting for 1/3 the time.
    The conduct of the US at the UN, under Repugnican control. is shameful, at best.

    Reply

  3. Pissed Off American says:

    On a side note, here’s one of Steve’s shining stars, Lawrence Wilkerson with another “Gee I knew it all along” commentary in the Los Angeles Times. It seems this Wilkerson dude figures he had it right all along, he just didn’t see fit to speak up about it. So what is worse, the criminals that have hi-jacked most branches of the United States Government, or the fucking cowards that watched it happen, and did nothing and said nothing?? At least even pathetic Powell has the dignity to refrain from getting on the “Yeah I knew it was going on” train. He probably recognizes how much it undescores how complicit his inaction, (and the inaction of people like Wilkerson), was. These people are a day late and a dollar short with this shit. Now that Rome is smoldering, they claim they watched the match being lit, as if it somehow exonerates them. Well, it doesn’t. If these bastards saw the train was derailing, it was their duty to do something about it. Instead, they watched the wreck, and now they want to stand on a siding and tsk tsk, as if they were never on the train.
    http://tinyurl.com/2gk3e5
    An excerpt……
    “I also saw more stark evidence of what a poor manager Wolfowitz was. He had no idea how to make the trains run on time — and seemed to have no inclination to do so. Talented people left his shop saying they could get nothing accomplished. Papers sat in in-boxes for ages with no action, and the need to deal with daily mini-crises was supplanted by the desire to turn out hugely complicated but elegantly expressed “concepts” and “strategies.” The rest of the workaday Pentagon largely ignored Wolfowitz’s policy shop as irrelevant.”
    “When Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld picked Wolfowitz in 2000 as his deputy — to make all the trains in the Pentagon run on time — those of us who were familiar with Wolfowitz knew a train wreck would occur. It did, almost immediately, as nothing got through the roadblock of the deputy’s office.”
    “Later, as post-invasion planning for Iraq was called for, Wolfowitz and the No. 3 man in the department, Douglas Feith, proved their administrative ineptitude. By that time, I was working for Secretary of State Powell, and there was increasing friction between us and the Pentagon. We watched Rumsfeld, in the arrogance of his power and the hubris of his brilliance, totally ignore the chaos beneath him, working with now-Vice President Cheney to drive all trains to Baghdad. ”

    Reply

  4. Erik says:

    This seems like the correct way forward, given the vast sums of money spent by the 2 other principal forces in the region: Saudi Arabia and their huge sums of money spent on strict, fundamentalist religious indoctrination, and the U.S. and our over $400 billion spent to have a hail of metal descend on a people falsely accused of colluding to harm us in the past, and falsely accused of planning to harm us in the future. Imagine what $400 billion could have achieved in humanitarian gains and in winning friends, not just in the region, but throughout the world!
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/6672923.stm

    Reply

  5. Erik says:

    This seems like the correct way forward, given the vast sums of money spent by the 2 other principal forces in the region: Saudi Arabia and their huge sums of money spent on strict, fundamentalist religious indoctrination, and the U.S. and our over $400 billion spent to have a hail of metal descend on a people falsely accused of colluding to harm us in the past, and falsely accused of planning to harm us in the future. Imagine what $400 billion could have achieved in humanitarian gains and in winning friends, not just in the region, but throughout the world!
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/6672923.stm

    Reply

  6. David N says:

    If countries that do not honor human rights, and do not treat their own citizens with dignity and attention to the rule of law, are no eligible to sit on the Human Rights Council, then how can the U.S. claim such a status?

    Reply

  7. Marcia says:

    How with the present openly expressed and accorded by Congress human rights doctrine that is the US policy can we possibly have any credibility concerning the Human Rights Council?

    Reply

  8. Kathleen says:

    The US does more that throw tantrums at the UN. We withold our dues and cripple meaningful programs. We also run around to the Third World countries twisting arms and threatening to call in loans if they don’t vote the way we want. It’s formidable pressure.

    Reply

  9. Bonethug Iranian says:

    Given the comprehensive damage done the United Nations by John Bolton and the Bush administration, can the U.S. EVER regain diplomatic stature and standing? It seems highly unlikely. The problems with the Human Rights Council stand on their own lack of credible performance by the members seated at Council. The U.S. was disinclined to make effort and the Council deteriorated under the weight of it’s own incredulous membership. Overall, the U.S. is diplomatically neutered and the United Nations is accorded the same neutering by it’s spineless acquiesence to U.S. tantrums.

    Reply

  10. Robert Morrow says:

    doesn’t ZIMBABWE run the committee on sustainablity? Gag.

    Reply

  11. Kathleen says:

    Scott,
    Diplomacy does work, but Das Bush doesn’t do nuance. Neither he nor his father before him had much respect for the UN and the Human Rights Commission, now Council.
    At best, they have treated the body with disdain and only used it to further a political goal, like toppling Castro.
    Until we in the USA elect candidates who hold the UN in high regard, I don’t think we can expect much from the State Department vis a vis Human Rgihts.
    Let’s hope our horizon is brighter with renewed concern for justice, but it’ll take a real purge of our NeoNutzis Stateside for that.

    Reply

  12. Kathleen says:

    Scott,
    Diplomacy does work, but Das Bush doesn’t do nuance. Neither he nor his father before him had much respect for the UN and the Human Rights Commission, now Council.
    At best, they have treated the body with disdain and only used it to further a political goal, like toppling Castro.
    Until we in the USA elect candidates who hold the UN in high regard, I don’t think we can expect much from the State Department vis a vis Human Rgihts.
    Let’s hope our horizon is brighter with renewed concern for justice, but it’ll take a real purge of our NeoNutzis Stateside for that.

    Reply

Add your comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *