A Tragic Metaphor

2018-06-02T23:45:24+05:00

Any attempt at the United Nations (UN) to address the problem of violence against the Palestinian people by Israel has started to follow a pattern. Many countries group together to pass a resolution to restrict Israel’s use of disproportionate force only to have the United States prevent any meaningful action from taking place.

Friday’s Security Council’s conference was no different. The conference saw the failure of two resolutions from adoption- one produced by Kuwait, in response to the killing of dozens of Palestinian protesters in Gaza, and the other tabled as a response by the United States, which blamed the violence on Hamas. While the Kuwait resolution had 10 votes in favour until US bulldozed it with its veto vote, the US resolution left only a lone Nikki Haley, adamantly raising her hand up.

This is a mirror of many such conferences on Israel-Palestine relations, with both sides not ready to compromise. Of course, the anomaly here is that when we speak of “sides”, we usually mean Israel and US on one side, and the rest of the world on the other. It speaks perhaps of the fading relevance of the UN and especially of the Security Council, that affirmation from all countries on one issue is meaningless in the face of a US veto.

With the Trump Doctrine, the US is more than ever not ready to compromise or even at least see sense enough not to commit provocative actions. While this may win votes back home, as the resolutions showed, in the end both sides achieved nothing.

Meanwhile, the causalities rate in Palestine increases every day. While this farce was occurring in the UN on Friday, Israeli forces killed a Palestinian nurse as she tried to help a wounded protester at the Gaza border, a tragic metaphor for the usefulness of the UNSC if there ever was one.

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