Despite the U.S. government and Israeli pressure and threats, the UNESCO members have voted to admit Palestine as a fully-fledged member of the U.N. organization. 107 members have voted yes, 14 members including the U.S., Israel, Germany and Canada voted no, and 52 members have abstained from voting.
The U.S. government has already declared that it will stop its financial support to UNESCO, which amounts to 20% of its budget, $60 million. The Israeli government also stopped its financial support to the organization, which amounts to 3% of the organization budget. The U.S. congress, which is under the thumb of AIPAC and some Jewish Zionist organizations passed a bill in 1990 preventing the funding of any U.N. organization that admits the Palestinians as full members before an Israeli-Palestinian peace deal is accomplished. Of course, negotiations have been going on for more than 40 years and the Palestinians have rejected Israel dictating the terms for peace. This policy was pursued by the Israelis to give them more time to continue their expansion in the occupied West Bank.
The points that ought to be raised for the benefit of Americans and the public in general are as follows. First, the biggest loser is the U.S. government, who continues to lose influence, not just in the Arab-Islamic world, but worldwide. American society, with more than 310 million people, are under the influence of Jewish Zionist organizations who put Israeli interest ahead of the U.S.’s interest.
Second, the U.S. foreign policy for the last 6 decades has been consistent in its support of the Israeli Zionist state, regardless of the issue. The U.S. representative at the U.N. Security Council has used its veto power more than 75 times – more than any other permanent member – to protect Israel.
Third, this type of American foreign policy has been a major cause referred to by Islamic terrorist groups as a justification to attack the U.S. Some of these organizations have made it clear that the U.S. should play a neutral role in this conflict and not side with Israel against others, especially the Palestinians.
Fourth, the U.S. government has supported the Israeli government, not just politically, but also militarily and financially. The U.S. provided Israel with the most sophisticated armament that was not even given to members of NATO. Furthermore, Israel, since its creation, has received more than $170 billion in economic and military aid.
I would say that generosity should start at home. There are more than 40 million Americans who are classified as “poverty stricken”. The irony of such a policy is that Israeli never put the U.S.’s national interest ahead of its own.
Now, the positive admission of the Palestinians to UNESCO will give them the right to protect their heritage, antiquities, educational system and religious institutions (Islamic and Christian) from destruction by Israel.
For example, to illustrate this point, is the recent Israeli government’s announcement to incorporate Al-Haram Al-Ibrahim “The Ibrahim Mosque” and the Bilal ben Rabah mosque in the occupied West Bank to be listed as part of Jewish heritage antiquities and religious sites. Such an act has already been criticized by UNESCO.
Irene Bukove, the director of UNESCO, stated that these sites are also important for members of the Muslim and Christian community. She stated that Israel should not proceed with this illegal plan. Such an illegal act will contribute more to the instability of the region.
Furthermore, Katherine Ashton, the Secretary of Foreign Affairs of the European Common Market pointed out that the Israeli action will create more obstacles towards peace between the Israelis and the Palestinians.
Israel has been following an aggressive policy since its creation in 1948. This is attributed to total U.S. support. It is about time that American national interest should supersedes the Israeli one.