View Full Version : UN paying for Palestinian campaign
Tue, 16th Aug '05, 10:10pm
Oh yes, another nail in the UN coffin. :D
UNDP Funds Palestinian Political Campaign (http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,165893,00.html)
Instead, some of it is funding a Palestinian political campaign under the slogan, "Today Gaza, tomorrow the West Bank and Jerusalem." Both the West Bank (search) and Jerusalem (search) are disputed areas, yet it is U.N. money that is paying for posters, t-shirts, even bumper stickers bearing that slogan. Gold claims the UNDP has also been giving money to organizations tied to Hamas (search). One UNDP bank transfer request, obtained by FOX News, shows the organization giving thousands of dollars to a Jenin-based organization with links to the militant group. Hmmm, I wonder what side the UN is on in this struggle....
Edited to correct link, thanks Morgoth!
[ August 17, 2005, 09:13: Message edited by: Beren ]
Tue, 16th Aug '05, 10:17pm
I knew it, Microsoft is behind the whole thing!!! :hahaerr:
Errr, you might check you link, remove the extra "http" string
Tue, 16th Aug '05, 10:59pm
Well Fox news is about as unreliable as sources go in my book but since you have repeatedly told us not to bash the source but to bash it's arguments I'm going to assume that the story is true (allthough I don't believe it's completley true), since I really have not read about the subject elsewhere nor have I heard of it and therefore have no arguments against the story.
Anyway I doubt the UN actually has any greater agenda in the Israeli Palestinian conflict. Why would they have? If it's true that there is some sponsoring of a Palestinian extremist party then I'm pretty certain that the money is meant to support the poor and not any parties. It's a fact that in a massive buorocratic organization such as the UN corruption will occur and go on without possibly ever being noticed but the same goes for most countries in the world too, so it's not a big surprise.
Anyway, Israel is a member of the UN and it's full within their rights to question any such fundings and I'm sure they are quite capable of creating enough of publicity to awake serious discussions about the issue, provided that they had proof to back up their claims. I'm sure that neither the EU or US would wish to boost further any extremist movements in the paelstinian population. And yes, if the UN is knowingly funding any palestinian political organization it should be stopped. The UN is supposed to be politically neutral.
Wed, 17th Aug '05, 1:40am
No offence, DW, but that's hardly a damning indictment on the UN as a whole. It's evidence of funds misappropriation and local-level corruption, certainly - but would you ever claim that no foreign aid and development monies sent by the USA ever ends up lining the pockets of the local politicians or their thugs? Even with the best intentions at a local level, there will almost inevitably be fronts and proxies collecting monies that will be used to support political and/or terrorist initiatives.
From the article:
"Almost anything new in Palestine has an element of politics in it," said the representative, Timothy Rothermel. "This was something, that particular poster which was prepared by the disengagement office with financial support from UNDP, but obviously what it says is also consistent with the relevant U.N. resolutions in the Security Council decisions about the status of Palestine."
I'm not sure I understand what this guy is on about, but his first point is pertinent. Everything is going to be political in such a disputed area; no matter what is said or done, someone will kick up a stink.
It's grounds for an investigation and audit of local UNDP funds distribution, but hardly a nail in the coffin of the UN. Attributing bias to the whole organisation based on such a report is a little far-fetched.
Wed, 17th Aug '05, 4:14pm
I didn't say it was a "damning indictment". I said it was another nail in the coffin. By itself it is almost meaningless, but with all the other corruption that the UN commits, it becomes another straw added to the camel's back. In other words, it is another piece of evidence that the UN is corrupt to be added to the pile of existing evidence.
I will be happy to admit that I am completely biased on this issue (though I think everyone here already knew that :lol: ). I want the UN out of the US and the US participation greatly reduced. I really don't care if it moves to Paris and continues to exist (I would say function, but function indicates that it serves a beneficial purpose), or dies a horrible shamed death, I just want it gone from the shores of my nation. The UN is an organization that has become corrupt to its roots, and while it might have been beneficial in the past, it is now time for it to go away.
Wed, 17th Aug '05, 6:12pm
Another Google AdWords gem... :shake:
Send Flowers To Israel (http://www.sorcerers.net/upload/image.php?image=flowers.jpg)
Thu, 18th Aug '05, 11:12am
I'd be a bit skeptical if one could consider this a sign of UN corruption. Is someone surprised that various UN organizations would supply aid - financial or expertise - to the palestinian authorities for the upcoming elections? IMO that is perfectly normal - and fitting, given the (lack of) experience palestinians have in the field. And just who can be surprised that some of the money given to the Palestinian Autonomy will end up in anti-Israeli groups? Sheesh, not only are there a lot of Palestinians that might raise such a banner, but the Autonomy itself was created through the efforts of several figures who started in the militant organizations/terrorist groups/what-have-you-s. Arafat, for example. So let me see, the UN is anti-Israel and corrupt because some of the money it gave to the Palestinians was used to make anti-Israel T-Shirts? That's like giving money to Saudi religious NGO's and some of it used in funding madrasas.
But then again, I'm getting the idea that it's someone's agenda to make the UN look bad. Nothing big and decisive comes out - the kind of scandals that are usually present in every state - but for some reason they are all deemed quite newsworthy. I wonder it it's all maybe connected with the kind of personality and history a certain Mr. Bolton says and the "reformist" approach he supposedly will implement.
Thu, 18th Aug '05, 2:42pm
I freely admit that I will attempt to make the UN look bad at every turn. IMO it is a corrupt organization that that has primarily decided that its job is to work toward making itself the overriding government of the world. That was not the intent when it was formed, but that hasn't stopped it from trying to become more than it was designed to be.
Again, this story by itself is of little import, but together with all the other small (and not so small) pieces of evidence against it, there is quite a preponderance of facts that inevitably lead to the fact that the UN is creating more discontent and harm in the world than it cures.
The UN has become an organization that simply tries to buy the support of every world government (even if they are horrible dictators), and really doesn't give a rat's ass about the people who live there. This is what governments do in a effort to maximize the position of the people the represent. This should not be the behavior of an organization that is supposedly dedicated to the protection and improvement of the oppressed and downtrodden.
Sorry, but the UN has lost its way, and it either has to be radically reformed, or dissolved and replaced with a new leaner more focused structure.
Personally, I think it is too corrupt to be reformed.
Back to the topic:
The fact is that given the nature of the region, extra oversight should have been implemented to keep the money from being misappropriated.
How does the use of this money fit with the key purpose of the UNDP as stated below? :shake:
"UNDP helps developing countries attract and use aid effectively. In all our activities, we encourage the protection of human rights and the empowerment of women. " (http://www.undp.org/about/)
Thu, 18th Aug '05, 3:17pm
The UN has become an organization that simply tries to buy the support of every world government (even if they are horrible dictators), and really doesn't give a rat's ass about the people who live there.Damn right. It should follow the bright example of bombing those evil dictators (which they've previously supported) to oblivion, then wage war in the country until dozens of thousands are dead, then set up a puppet government that will do things like they're told! It's all SO EASY! :rolleyes:
Thu, 18th Aug '05, 3:37pm
That is not what I stated or implied. The goal of the UN is to protect the rights of individuals, sovereignty and promote peace.
It is failing on all counts because of 2 factors: it is attempting to usurp powers that were never intended for it, and thinks of itself as a governing body.
Nice straw man though Tal, especially the part where you equate the UN with governing bodies by analogizing its actions with the actions of governments. :shake:
I guess it shows that you are willing to accept the UN as the top of the pyramid of the various levels of government on this planet.
Thu, 18th Aug '05, 4:00pm
It is failing on all counts because of 2 factors: it is attempting to usurp powers that were never intended for it, and thinks of itself as a governing body UN fails because the most powerful of its members undermine its authority by the abuse of the veto right and by disregarding its opinions and resolutions when they doesn't serve their goals. When the most powerful members like US, Russia, China and France do whatever they can to weaken the organization, what will prevent other not so powerful members from diregarding UN as well, especially when they have the backing of one of the permanent members?
Also, if you can, tell just one organization of any kind (from sports federations to churches and other political organizations), which is just the 1/4 of the UN size and it's not corrupted.
Thu, 18th Aug '05, 4:19pm
Also, if you can, tell just one organization of any kind (from sports federations to churches and other political organizations), which is just the 1/4 of the UN size and it's not corrupted. Everything is corrupt at some level; it is a matter of magnitude.
However, the fact all large organizations are corrupt at some level does not justify or excuse the UN.
Finally, Sports federations do not try to exert their authority upon me, and I can vote for a different politician if he or his party become too corrupt for my tastes. The light at the end of the tunnel for me is that discontent with the UN is growing every year here, and if the trend continues, the voters will demand that politicians bury it, at least as far US participation, they rest of the world can keep it if they want it. :cool:
Thu, 18th Aug '05, 4:35pm
It's not an excuse but you can't use something that it's going to happen anyway as a weapon against the organization.
Also can you tell me which are the reforms that you like to see in UN?
BTW, sports federations have authority upon you, just ask those who put their money on Spain and Italy in the last football world cup.
Thu, 18th Aug '05, 4:42pm
Sorry, but I don't understand most of your post.
Sports federations have power over me because some put their money on Spain or France???
Sorry, but no sports federation has no authority to drag individuals in front of a tribunal and place them in prison, as the UN seeks the authourity to do.
Now we are way :yot:
Thu, 18th Aug '05, 5:52pm
"Upon you" was a generalisation, I didn't mean specifically you. You are not familiar with football and because of it you didn't understand what I mean, so I'll try a different hypothetical example. NBA finals, Lakers vs Pistons, Lakers are the favourites, simply they can't lose , you put a huge amount of money on them and then because of referree's "mistakes" they lose and you lose your money. Isn't this a kind of authority upon you?
Anyway, this is off-topic as you said, so could you now answer to my question and tell me which are the reforms that you want to see in UN?
no authority to drag individuals in front of a tribunal and place them in prison, as the UN seeks the authourity to do I guess that you are refering to the International Court of Hague and to the US request for immutiny for the american military personell. If I am right can you explain to me, why US ask immutiny for their citizens, when in the same time they ask from the serb governement to arrest Radovan Karazic (sp?) and bring him before the International Court?
Fri, 19th Aug '05, 1:01am
The UN has become an organization that simply tries to buy the support of every world government (even if they are horrible dictators), and really doesn't give a rat's ass about the people who live there.It has been given these jobs by the governments signing up, and they have the power to take these powers away again. The UN ain't gonna ursurp anything, except in your dreams. And they do 'buy'? Gimme a break, they are notoriously broke, primarily as a result of those costly peacekeeping missions and also poor paying morale of some members, and if anything they are begging the world rather than buying it.
Monday I'll start my internship at the UNFCCC, the UN organisation created to implement the Kyoto treaty, and that's it's job, implementing the Kyoto treaty. If it starts anything funny or 'off topic' the parties to the treaty will make a quick end to it as UNFCCC has a job to do and runs on a tight budget.
Even in the broader areas like the realm of the ECOSOC where social issues are discussed the parties who are voting in the end are the nations, and they have their national interests.
The only realm where the UN actually overrides or overrules national governments is the UNSC, and there the U.S. have a veto, so your constant fear of UN world government is ... nonsense. The UN is a tool, and the power of the UN Secretary General is actually quite limited, and placed much more on a moral dimension than anywhere else. He has no hard power at all.
[ August 19, 2005, 01:17: Message edited by: Ragusa ]
Fri, 19th Aug '05, 2:20am
Well Ragusa, your true colors are finally starting to show through...an internship with a UN organization, congratulations, I think...
I have always wondered why you are such a staunch defender of such a corrupt organization, now I finally understand why.
Buy the way, how an organization is supposed to work and how it works in reality are often two different things.
The UN has proposed taxation on the world (or at least the wealthiest nations of the world, wonder who they have in mind :rolleyes: ), that in itself belies your view of its intent and the actuality of origins and statements of purpose.
Sorry, you can put all the faith you want in pretty pieces of paper and statements of intent, but in the real world, they are worthless. Actions speak louder than words, and in deed, the UN has earned damnation.
By the way, if the UN is such a poor and pathetic organization as you have made it out to be, and if the US uses it as a tool as you have so often asserted, why defend it? Why don't you want it radically changed to thwart what in your perception are aspirations of the US to create an empire? Could it be that you are being a little duplicitous? Could it be that you already see the groundwork being laid, and are willing to bide your time to see if it grows fruit?
Fri, 19th Aug '05, 8:29am
You are paranoid as far as the UN is concerned. It's that simple.
But I will not expose you to my subversive and corrupting pro-UN influence any longer in this thread.
Sun, 21st Aug '05, 12:12pm
That was pitiful...
DW you are making more sense to me every day...
(unless you shoot another animal...we all have our soft spots)
[ August 21, 2005, 12:45: Message edited by: Late-Night Thinker ]
Sun, 21st Aug '05, 12:45pm
Stick to the topic itself everyone.
Tue, 23rd Aug '05, 1:39pm
"Actions speak louder than words, and in deed, the UN has earned damnation."
There was a little bit in an often read and even more often quoted book that ran along the lines of "let the blameless cast the stone." As a large organization, which has to get people all over the world together, the UN is slow-acting and often bureaucratic, but I think you are waay too skeptical. It's ok, we all have our biases - but I simply don't agree with yours.
The UN was created after a war that taught the world a very bitter lesson: wars of aggression should be avoided in any possible way, as they lead to mass suffering. Which, in 1945, made absolutely perfect sense. Take a country as totalitarian and repressive as 1941 USSR, barely come out of the hunger in the early 1930's and the purges of 1937-39, and a country suffering from forced industrialization at the cost of everything else. Yet when this country was invaded by troops of supposedly much more civilized country (I'm not talking about the leadership) the war led to destruction and famine on an almost unmatched degree.
The UN was created as the forum to direct international efforts against wars. While it might not have had a perfect record, at least it has never reneged on it. It never had nor has the opportunity to mess a lot in a country's internal affairs, if you would make the case for the opposite, give me some referenced facts.
Later came other responsibilities, but it makes sense that if you want to do something on an international level, and there is an existing organization tackling problems on that level, you use it. Today, intercountry interaction is at a very high level, so it makes sense that some of it goes through the UN. It's not a government, as it has neither the resources nor people for anything even remotely such. It is a forum and a framework for action, that's all there is to it.
It's kinda hard for the UN to go against any country, as it doesn't have any power itself. Peacekeeping, embargoes, and the like - practically all of its "arsenal" has to be approved by the Security Council. It's not the UN telling those countries what to do, it's the other way around. Small wonder it has had little success in quickly solving vital issues - hey, you get Russia, China, France, the UK and USA to agree on one controversial thing and to actually do something about it and you've got my admiration.
As for the UN supporting dictatorships - beside my remark that many democratic countries have done so and do so even now - it doesn't necessarily support them, but it can't act against them, simple as that. The Human rights council may and probably does decry capital punishment in Saudi Arabia, repression in Chechnya or Tibet or police brutality in French Guiana, but what can it do? Call in peacekeepers, or raise sanctions? Only the superpowers can do that, and don't tell me the UN tells Bush, Putin or Blaire what to do...
So basically you distrust the UN and want it to be less powerful (or non-existant) because it can't do things it simply doesn't have the power to do. Kinda like a vicious circle, isn't it? You don't have the influence or power to help in one situation, then it's used by your opponents to argue against giving you any power or having an influence.
Still, there are a few reasons the UN was created with such a slow-moving and cumbersome action mechanism as the security council: in 1945, people had the notion that sometimes hasty actions lead to very bad results, so better be safe than sorry. That, and then they thought that unilateral action in international affairs was a thing best avoided. Hey, I can't blame them for that.
OK, and before we give our nice little moderator Beren a stroke, back to Palestine. I don't think the UN is to blame for giving any kind of assistance to the Palestinians to get a form of normal political discourse going - god knows they need all the assistance they can get in that. An international organization would need to be omniscient and omnipotent to control where every penny goes, especially in that region, so it's little surprise some of it got diverted. Hey, hundreds of organizations and governments have given aid for the political processes in Palestine, why single out the UN just because you don't like them? Dollar bills don't have the name of the donor on them.
So let's sum it up: a UN agency is one of the tens (if not more) that gives aid to the Palestinians. Then you see a poster or whatever that claims the Palestinians want authority in the West Bank and Jerusalem, both areas (ok, part of the latter) that they used to hold under the same documents and treaties that have created the state of Israel, and you are appalled by the UN? Come on, that's ridiculous. If we were talking about bombs here I might be more sympathetic, but stickers? T-shirts? Then we get to the nail in the coffin, a UNDP transfer to "a Jenin-based organization with links to the militant group."
Omigod, thousands of dollars. An incredible sum, really. To an organization with "links" to a militant group, uh-hum. Leaving aside the neutrality and objectivity of the source, what might those links be? Get real, dude, the entire Palestinian authority was centered around Arafat, a militant and the icon of 80% of the militants in Palestine. The people in power not only have "links," many have probably fought alongside the Hamas once. My point here is that it's very likely that every NGO or organization will probably have "links" to some organization or another. After all, these people have families, relatives, friends - and I think the PLO and other similar organizations have enjoyed some popularity at times. It's like crying foul because the a member of a recipient organization in the US is a Baptist.
Frankly, you seem too picky. Heck, I'm not that sceptical about my own government :)