by Vanessa Beeley, for 21st Century Wire
“The UN World Food Program (WFP) aids for the restricted Syrian civilians in Deir Ezzor city have landed mostly in ISIS controlled territories, a source in the city’s administration said Thursday.”
A report in ALALAM states that WFP food drops have landed predominantly in ISIS held territory, despite UN claims last week that the WFP had successfully dropped 21 tonnes of aid into ISIS besieged Deir Ezzor.
“Planes dropped the humanitarian help sent by the United Nations into the territory controlled by Daesh. Just two containers ended up in the areas where the Syrian army [is located],” the source told RIA Novosti.
This extraordinary turn of events and the UN false statement casts another shadow over UN neutrality and honesty. Yesterday, I listened to Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, make his address to the UN Human Rights Commission.
“I am honoured to address this Council, on the eve of its second decade. This is an anniversary that calls for more than rhetoric: it cries out for action, and decisive and co-operative leadership in defence of vital principles.”
It seems that, neither accountability nor transparency are to be included in those vital principles.
“Human rights violations are like a signal, the sharp zig-zag lines of a seismograph flashing out warnings of a coming earthquake. Today, those jagged red lines are shuddering faster and higher…… These shocks are being generated by poor decisions, unprincipled and often criminal actions, and narrow, short term, over simplified approaches to complex questions.”
Is he describing US and NATO foreign policy? He goes on to further describe the US modus operandi:
“This resurgent broad-based malice, irresponsibility and sometimes eye-watering stupidity, altogether acting like steam at high pressure being fed into the closed chamber of world affairs.”
Then comes the reminder of the UN’s founding principles. Certainly useful, as it becomes harder and harder to define the UN’s purpose these days while the world is being set on fire by illegal intervention and proxy military invasions, unpunished by the Security Council.
“They [key drafters of UN Charter] knew, from bitter experience, human rights, the respect for them, the defence of them, would not menace national security – but build more durable nations, and contribute [in their words] to “a final peace”.
When one ponders this “final peace” it is terrifyingly distant. While the Saudi-led coalition has been pounding Yemen for almost one year with NATO & US supplied weapons and missiles, this “final peace” seems a mirage created to divert public attention away from the UN’s real purpose, which appears to be facilitation of this destruction on an unquantifiable level.
Please note, that this eloquent and moving rhetoric has failed, so far, to even mention one of the most heinous crimes against Humanity that is being carried out against the Yemeni people by the Saudi-led coalition.
Then we have a moment of clarity:
“Today we meet against a backdrop of accumulating departures from that body of institutions and laws which the States built to codify their behaviour. Gross violations of international human rights, which clearly will lead to disastrous outcomes, are being greeted with indifference. More and more States appear to believe that the legal architecture of the international system is a menu from which they can pick and choose, trashing what appears to be inconvenient in the short term”
A sharp intake of breath, is the High Commissioner about to address US lawlessness and flagrant flouting of International Law?
How foolish to presume that the UN might just stray from its US drawn propaganda road map. This glimmer of hope was soon extinguished by the, now familiar, descent into the tired and extensively debunked accusations against the Syrian government.
“These two great bodies of law are being violated shockingly, in multiple conflicts, with complete impunity. In Syria, previous to the temporary cessation of hostilities which began last weekend, this had been the case for five long years. Neighbourhoods, schools and packed marketplaces have been hit by tens of thousands of airstrikes. Thousands of barrel bombs have been thrown out of helicopters onto streets and homes. Mortar and artillery fire, and IEDs have been used without regard for civilian life.”
This entire paragraph is blatant propaganda, simplistic, and without any detailing of the very complexities that he has reprimanded us for ignoring previously. The emotive, tens of thousands of airstrikes, the implication being that these are Russian and Syrian of course, no mention of the US coalition strikes that have unequivocally targeted Syrian infrastructure and civilians, rarely doing any damage to ISIS positions & failing dismally to impede their advances, prior to Russian legal intervention on the 30th September 2015.
Not forgetting, the reported accidental arms drops to ISIS during the course of US NATO illegal intervention into Syrian airspace and territory via their proxy “boots on the ground”.
We are back full circle to the barrel bombs. Barrel bombs are simple explosive devices, the barrel bomb brand name is a clever marketing ploy to transform them into a hideous device beyond the realms of ordinary warfare. All bombs have hellish consequences but the barrel bomb, in NATO US terminology far outweighs the US, Saudi and Israeli mothers of all bombs, cluster bombs, flechette missiles, white phosphorous, and all manner of illegal killing devices designed to inflict maximum mutilation on the besieged civilian populations of Yemen and Gaza, for example.
There is a cursory mention of the devastating effects of mortars and shells but naturally this is lumped in with the Syrian Arab Army rather than defined as being from the US NATO backed terrorists embedded in civilian areas or besieging entire villages and towns throughout Syria.
No mention of the very aptly named Hell Cannon that have inflicted terrible damage upon the Aleppo civilians huddled for safety in the Government held areas, driven from their homes by the US backed terror factions of Al Nusra, ISIS and assorted mercenary gangs.
No mention of Turkey’s Syria all-out-war posturing, shelling of Kurdish areas, downing of a Russian fighter jet. Do these acts not constitute war crimes or violations of all Geneva conventions? Should they not be mentioned in the same breath as “increasing, and severe violations of fundamental rights and principles” ?
And on it goes:
“At least ten hospitals and other medical units have been damaged or destroyed in Syria since the beginning of January, more than one every week, and on several occasions a second strike has hit rescue operations.”
More emotive, unverified rhetoric. We must presume that the High Commissioner is talking about the MSF hospitals, established without permission from the Syrian government and exclusively in terrorist held areas, serviced in many instances by the Syria Civil Defence aka White Helmets aka Al Nusra. The backers and donors of these “saviours of all Humanity” except humanity loyal to the Syrian Government are discussed in depth in our series of articles on their deep state roots.
Al Hussein mentions second strikes. Let us just consider for one moment, that we are three quarters through his speech and still no mention of the war crimes being committed daily in Yemen, where second strikes are second nature as civilian first responders clamber over the rubble of a Saudi initial strike before being obliterated by the second strike as they attempt to pull smouldering bodies from the remains of homes, schools, mosques and hospitals.
Then of course, we cannot vilify the Syrian Government and Army without mentioning sieges.
“Similarly the deliberate starvation of people is unequivocally forbidden as a weapon of warfare. By extension, so are sieges, which deprive civilians of essential goods such as food. And yet over 450,000 people are currently trapped in besieged towns and villages in Syria, and have been, in some cases, for years. Food, medicine and other desperately needed humanitarian aid is repeatedly obstructed. Thousands of people may have starved to death.”
Indeed Mr High Commissioner, the people of Kafarya and Foua thank you personally for their starvation and lack of desperately need humanitarian aid and for their ongoing suffering and loss of life under the US NATO backed terrorist siege that you claim, is impossible to bypass.
All of Syria is under siege, 23 million people living under sanctions and the fall out from a US NATO war of aggression being waged upon their country, with the complicity of the UN Security Council that turns a blind eye to this crushing lawlessness.
No mention of the terrorist occupations of many Syrian towns and villages, the stockpiling of food, the deliberate starvation of civilians for propaganda purposes, the caging of civilians as human shields, the very recent suicide bombings in Homs, Damascus and Deir Ezzor.
No mention of the terrorist targeting of sectarian minorities in an attempt to undermine Syria’s secular culture, the terrorist attacks on Syrian hospitals and infrastructure. No mention of the beneficiaries of the ISIS oil trade, no mention of the theft of over 1400 factories from Aleppo by chief terrorism facilitator, Turkey.
No mention of the deaths of hundreds of thousands of Syrian soldiers and National Defence Forces, massacred by the western backed terrorists. No mention of the rapes, crucifixions, massacres and beheadings, the training of child suicide bombers, by Riyadh educated Sheikh Abdullah Muhaysini, leader of the Army of Conquest [Al Nusra and Ahrar al Sham].
And still no mention of Yemen, a wholesale slaughter of civilians masterminded by NATO and the US from Riyadh control centres.
Until, as an afterthought:
“And yet Syria is far from the only armed conflict in which civilians have endured frightful attacks. Multiple medical facilities, religious sites and schools have been repeatedly attacked and bombed in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, South Sudan………..[finally] and Yemen.”
The UN Human Rights Commission was perfectly described yesterday as the polished diamond of western foreign policy. It is the optic through which we are directed to view our governments imperialism. While our governments rape, pillage and plunder under the banner of democracy, the UN Human Rights Commission soothes our troubled soul by creating the illusion of caring two hoots about the peoples devastated by these aggressive colonialist policies.
In closing, the High Commissioner made this statement:
“I urge you to act with courage and on principle, and to take a strong stand regarding the protection of civilians. The perpetrators of severe violations of this order must know that they will, at the first occasion, be sanctioned to the full extent of the law. […] I urge you to deploy your diplomatic power to uphold peace and advance the protection of human rights for all people, in other States and within your own”
In that case Mr High Commissioner, we await the sanctions you will impose upon Israel for their oppressive, brutal torture and execution of the Palestinian people upon whose land they spread hatred and violence.
We await the sanctions you will impose upon Saudi Arabia for the tens of thousands of Yemeni people they have mutilated, abused and displaced with NATO US manufactured missiles.
We await the sanctions you will impose upon the US for their extra judicial executions of Black and Latino peoples on US soil and for the global misery being caused by their hostile neocolonialism.
We await the sanctions you will impose upon every member nation for its part in this global devastation and bloodshed… and we will wait for the day that the UN holds the mirror up to its own distorted, corrupted face and sees how “the fairest of them all” has become the reflection of all that is unjust and dishonourable in this world.
Author Vanessa Beeley is a contributor to 21WIRE, and since 2011, she has spent most of her time in the Middle East reporting on events there – as a independent researcher, writer, photographer and peace activist. She is also a member of the Steering Committee of the Syria Solidarity Movement, and a volunteer with the Global Campaign to Return to Palestine. See more of her work at her personal blog The Wall Will Fall.