It won't do, at least not in polite society, to propose wiping a country off the map. That mantra has been left to Iran's raving leader.
Instead, this year's tactic at the always-busy United Nations is to deny Israel the right to defend itself. Which would lead to its destruction soon enough. And that would be the practical effect of bringing its generals and ministers to trial for their "war crimes" in Gaza. That's where the Israelis, after absorbing years of rocket attacks across their southern border, went in and attacked the source of the attacks. Their border with Hamas-controlled Gaza has been quieter since.
Naturally the United Nations, which is a lot better at condoning aggression than enforcing the peace, is outraged and doing its best to stir things up again. Its "Human Rights" Council, which has little if anything to do with protecting human rights, especially in Islamic dictatorships, has demanded that Israel be brought before the International Court of Justice for daring to defend itself.
With fine impartiality between aggressors and defenders, an investigation sponsored by the UN produced a report that blamed both Hamas and Israel for their conduct during the late unpleasantness in Gaza, ignoring expert testimony and the conclusions of the Israelis' own extensive investigations.
The UN's Human Rights Council then turned its dubious report into another of its customary anti-Israeli resolutions. The prejudice here was so blatant that even the author of the report said he was saddened by the partisan use to which it was put.
The U.S. delegation and a few scattered European ones objected to this kind of lynch law, but both China and Russia, those great exemplars of human rights, joined the mob. So did the Arab bloc, another bastion of human rights.
The result: A biased jury brought in a biased verdict. What a surprise. Let it be said that at least this arm of the UN has been consistent: According to one count, 80 percent of the condemnations it's ever issued have been aimed at the Jewish state.
In the irony-free precincts of the United Nations, the chairman of the UN's Arab bloc this month is the delegate from Sudan, whose government presided over the genocide in Darfur, which is rapidly being forgotten.
These days even the United States, under our new administration, is adopting a softer, gentler tone toward the genocidal regime in Khartoum. For that matter, Washington is moving to "engage" Teheran and Moscow, too. And the military dictatorship in Burma to boot. Any regime that really violates human rights can hope to get a sympathetic hearing from this new crew at the State Department.
Nothing is likely to come of this latest diplomatic provocation at the United Nations except another delay in the always-stalled peace talks between Israelis and Palestinians. But any chance of those negotiations succeeding has always been only an abstraction. Even if the Israelis negotiated under this threat from the UN, with which Palestinian rump state/militia/gang/Iranian front group would they negotiate with? The one in Gaza or Damascus or Beirut on the West Bank?
The essential aim of the Arab side in this "peace process" that produces regular incidents and sporadic wars has never been to create a Palestinian state next to the Jewish one. Or that objective could have been achieved at almost any time during the past century by accepting one of the many proposals for partition of that overly promised land going back as far as the Peel Commission of 1937. Or as recently as the Oslo Accords of the 1990s. Or the summit that Yasser Arafat walked out of in the waning days of the Clinton administration in 2000.
Failure has followed failure because this diplomatic charade has never really been about creating still another Arab state in the Middle East but about destroying the Jewish one.
Paul Greenberg Archives