Commentary Magazine


Contentions

Shut Up, Ban Ki-Moon Explained

The UN’s shameless appeasement of terrorists is a well-worn story, but it’s always instructive to take note when it happens. The UN has issued a report on heightened Israel-Lebanon tensions, and it’s not surprising who gets blamed. What is surprising is the UN’s reasoning: it’s Israeli complaints about Hezbollah’s illegal weapons smuggling — not the smuggling itself — that is risking war:

“Rhetoric escalated rapidly, creating a perception in the public that a resumption of conflict was imminent,” the secretary-general wrote in the report. …

The UN chief wrote in his report that the heightened tensions were stoked by Israel’s claims of Hezbollah’s arms acquisitions. He said this “raised the specter of a miscalculation by either party leading to a resumption of hostilities, with potentially devastating consequences for Lebanon and the region.” …

Israel’s disappointment was compounded by the fact that Ban’s report did not mention Hezbollah’s involvement in a series of attempts by Lebanese in the south to interfere with UNIFIL’s operations over the past month. … In his report, Ban said UNIFIL enjoys “freedom of movement” in all of southern Lebanon. He also cited five unusual incidents in which UNIFIL troops were injured and a UN vehicle was stolen, but he refused to blame Hezbollah.

In other words, the UN secretary-general is saying that if war breaks out — even if Hezbollah starts it — it will not be Hezbollah’s fault, even though the group has been illegally importing massive quantities of rockets, and it will not be Syria’s and Iran’s fault, which have been supplying the weapons. It will be Israel’s fault — for talking about it. This would be merely appalling and ridiculous if it weren’t so dangerous: with the UN having already assured Hezbollah that future hostilities will be blamed on Israel, war has become more likely.