Last month in Washington, the United States hosted an international conference to advance the implementation of UN resolution 16 / 18. The resolution was adopted “by consensus”–a disarming term that really means without a vote–at a session of the U.N. Human Rights Council last March. It was endorsed the following month by the UN General Assembly.
UN 16 /18, whose formal title is “combating intolerance, negative stereotyping and stigmatization of, and discrimination, incitement to violence and violence against persons based on religion or belief,” sounds innocent but is not. To better understand the danger that belies this ostensibly high-minded resolution, let’s look at its genesis.
The 56 member “Organization of Islamic Cooperation” (OIC) began with earlier versions of the resolution. The impetus for it was to curtail the alleged global Islamophobia following the 9/11 attacks. Earlier renditions sought to criminalize “blasphemous speech” and “defamation of religion.” Even President Obama couldn’t reconcile the language in the original drafts due to the freedom of speech guaranty within the Constitution. Fast forward to UN 16 / 18. Out of necessity, the petition was broadened to protect not only Islam but all religions. Of course the OIC and UN have exhibited virtually no predilection to safeguarding Christians, Jews or others. Make no mistake, there is a single purpose for UN 16 / 18: silencing the critics of radical Islam. The OIC worked tirelessly with others to craft language acceptable to the US and eventually found the winning formula. They speciously substituted the word “incitement” for “defamation” and voila; the ever-appeasing Obama administration was now fully behind it. In a world where a simple cartoon can incite millions of Muslims to riot, just exactly who will be the judge of what constitutes “incitement to violence”? The UN? The OIC?
Never mind that the world is chock-full of depraved Islamists who terrorize, kill and strive to advance radical Islam throughout the West. Never mind as Abigail Esman wrote for Forbes.com: “the continued use of anti-Jewish materials in the schools of Saudi Arabia…or the ongoing persecution of Jews and Christians in numerous Muslim countries”. Never mind the desperate flight of Christian minorities from scores of Muslim countries. Never mind the pervasive religious fanatics who will flog if not kill an infidel for merely uttering a word, drawing a cartoon or writing a comedic skit that is uncomplimentary to Mohammad. Never mind that last year the FBI documented at least eight anti-Semitic crimes for every anti-Islamic one in the US. None of these require UN action but so-called “Islamophobia” requires urgent UN intervention. Really?
Dr. M. Zuhdi Jasser, an American Muslim and the founder of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy, puts it like this: “We should be putting Islamist autocracies on the defense and then simply reiterate that our First Amendment principles already protect the rights of all minorities — whether Muslim or otherwise — and that the best standard of free speech is the American one.” Amen. What a shame that the non-radical Muslim majority doesn’t join Dr. Jasser and others in combating the fundamentalist poison that infects Islam.
It is telling that the nations promoting this resolution have populations that are well beyond 90 percent and often 99 percent a single religion–Islam. Jordan Sekulow, director of policy and international operations for the American Center for Law and Justice states: “What is the problem here with the 1 percent speaking out and why is that such an issue that needs to be handled at the international level?”
I’ll tell you why although you already know. UN Resolution 16 / 18 is no more about religious tolerance than MSNBC is about fair and balanced reporting. It is all about religious intolerance. No doubt, some members of the UN actually believe this to be a step toward religious broad-mindedness. However, when the world naively agrees to censure if not criminalize dialog that might lead fanatics to “imminent violence,” we are all in trouble. By agreeing to this ridiculous sophomoric attempt to silence radical Islam’s critics, we are actually accepting responsibility for violence perpetrated by these extremists. This only further decimates our ability to combat them. Tragically, once again, the world has been duped by backwater Islamists who exploit our tolerance to advance their depraved quest for a world rid of Christians, Jews and all infidels.