Monday, December 24, 2012

The Middle East Media Sampler 12/24/2012: Media Joins Arabs In Denigrating Israel's Successful UN Resolution

From DG:

Israel wins at the UN, no one notices
"If Algeria introduced a resolution declaring that the earth was flat and that Israel had flattened it, it would pass by a vote of 164 to 13 with 26 abstentions."
Abba Eban (h/t Elder of Ziyon)
I went over to the sargent, said, "Sargeant, you got a lot a damn gall to ask me if I've rehabilitated myself, I mean, I mean, I mean that just, I'm sittin' here on the bench, I mean I'm sittin here on the Group W bench 'cause you want to know if I'm moral enough join the army, burn women,kids, houses and villages after bein' a litterbug."
Arlo Guthrie - Alice's Restaurant

Last week Israel won a victory at the UN. You probably didn't read about it in any newspaper. Many news organizations believe that the only news about Israel worth reporting is news that shows that Israel is isolated. So here's the notification at one of Israel's Facebook pages:
Israel's resolution "Entrepreneurship for Development" passed the UN General Assembly vote overwhelmingly, with 97 co-sponsors, 141 in favor, 31 against, 11 abstentions. 
Ambassador Ron Prosor - רון פרושאור: "Make no mistake. The stakes before us are high. The people we empower today will become the next Einstein, the next Picasso, the next Mother Theresa of tomorrow".
Israeli UN Ambassador Ron Prosor.
Credit: Wiki Commons

So who voted against? (See vote on Annex II)
Algeria, Bahrain, Bolivia, Comoros, Cuba, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Djibouti, Egypt, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Malaysia, Maldives, Mauritania, Morocco, Nicaragua, Oman, Pakistan, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Syria, Tunisia, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, Venezuela, Yemen. 
To get a fuller picture of this looking glass world called the UN, read Syria's response to this resolution:
The Assembly adopted a text on entrepreneurship for development by 141 votes in favour to 31 against, with 11 abstentions. Israel’s representative said he had hoped for consensus on the text, noting that the Arab States that had voted against it were among those that could benefit most from entrepreneurship. (See Annex II.) 
Syria’s representative, speaking in exercise of the right of reply, described that statement as “truly strange”, given the criticism that Israel had received over human rights violations and denial of economic opportunities to people living under occupation. Saudi Arabia’s representative defended his country’s record as a peace-loving nation, and his counterpart from Sudan said her country had not turned its back on its people, as the Israeli representative had said, but had instead turned its face towards those living under Israeli occupation.
Ambassador Prosor is correct, but why doesn't anyone else mention this? True, the vote is symbolic, but it is symptomatic of one of the major problems in the Middle East. The Syrian government has killed tens of thousands of its own citizens, but defends its vote against a policy statement that would serve to better lives globally because it originated with Israel on account of "occupation."

It's not just that the Arab world that sees Israel through this narrow prism. Consider Thomas Friedman who writes periodically about the 2002 U.N. Arab Human Development Report and observes "for the Arab world to thrive it needs to overcome its deficit of freedom, its deficit of knowledge and its deficit of women’s empowerment." Yet when the Arab world refuses to deal with Israel, even in matters that would benefit them, Friedman' harangues Israel for not doing enough.

Consider the Arab peace initiative that he championed in 2002. Friedman was essentially saying that Israel needed to accede to the demands of Hosni Mubarak, Bashar Assad, Moammar Gaddafi and fellow dictators by treating the Palestinians better than they treated their own people!

An article in the UAE's The National illustrates the problem:
"Hope you will touch upon the challenges facing us and young entrepreneurs, including quality of education, few resources devoted to research, and limited research supported by the private sector." 
In 2008, the public and private sectors in the Arab countries cut spending on research as a percentage of their GDP, according to the United Nations Development Programme's Arab Knowledge Report released this year. 
In Kuwait it was 0.09 per cent while it was 0.23 per cent in Egypt. By contrast, it was 3.46 per cent in Finland, 2.52 per cent in Singapore and 4.86 per cent in Israel. 
But Israel doesn't just lead by example, it attempts to help others help themselves. The head of MASHAVDaniel Carmon writes:
My visit to Ottawa came just a few days after the UN passed an Israeli-led resolution on “Entrepreneurship for Development.” As a proud and active member of the international community, Israel played a major role in drafting this resolution. We were pleased to see it pass by a vote of 129-31, despite every Arab delegate country voting “no” — thereby signalling to the world that they favour petty politics over human prosperity. 
This groundbreaking resolution highlights the value of entrepreneurship for creating jobs in the developing world, opening up economic opportunities, and fostering responsibility in both local entrepreneurs and donor countries. I must thank Canada for its assistance in helping to gather a substantial like-minded group of developed and developing countries to support this important resolution.
This work is a reflection of Israel’s work on the ground in Africa, South America and around the world. MASHAV’s work with young entrepreneurs in Columbia is part of its partnership with Latin American Young Americas Business Trust (YABT). Working with the Organization of American States, YABT is a private sector initiative that promotes social and economic development among youth. Israel sees this as an important project because it reflects its own experience in turning to innovation to become a developed country. 
Israel provides the means for others to get ahead and improve their societies, but the Arab world - encouraged by the Western apologists - refuse to get on board. They'd rather not allow opportunity to their own people.

Part of it, no doubt, is that greater economic freedom usually leads to greater political freedom. But there's also clearly a significant element of blind hatred for Israel.

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