“The Elders” are a self-proclaimed group of self-proclaimed wise men and women, including former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan, former U.S. President Jimmy Carter, former Irish President Mary Robinson, and South African Archbishop Desmond Tutu. While “The Elders” say they “offer their collective influence and experience to support peace building, help address major causes of human suffering and promote the shared interests of humanity,” they are better known for espousing moral equivalence and legitimizing terrorists.
While “The Elders” have jumped on the bandwagon to demand that Libyan dictator Muammar Qaddafi must step down, here’s a modest, tongue-in-cheek proposal: Why not invite him to join The Elders? After all, he’d fit right in. As the UN director for peacekeeping, Annan stepped aside to enable the Rwandan genocide to commence, so it’s debatable that conscience is a disqualifying factor. After rising to the secretary-generalship of the UN, Annan turned a blind eye to the oil-for-food program’s massive corruption—and, indeed, may have even participated in it, and so Qaddafi’s embezzlement shouldn’t be a disqualifying factor.
As for Mary Robinson, as the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, she oversaw a decision to condone suicide bombings as a legitimate means of resistance, so certainly Qaddafi’s own embrace of terrorism won’t be an impediment. As President of the European Union, she turned a blind eye toward terrorism finance, so no problems there, either. And the anti-Semitic rhetoric spewed at Robinson’s Durban Conference really made Qaddafi look like an amateur hatemonger, so maybe Robinson can help him form an NGO and offer him private lessons in more sophisticated engines of hate.
It’s been more than 30 years since Jimmy Carter’s brother Billy lobbied for Qaddafi’s regime, so certainly President Carter can swap fond remembrances of his late brother with Muammar. While Carter feigned embarrassment at his brother’s antics, secret State Department cables published by the Washington Post reported on August 1, 1980, tell a different story. “There has been no negative fallout from Billy Carter’s visit,” the State Department reported, “In fact, on the local scene we would rate it a very positive event which has opened some doors for this embassy.” Regardless, Carter has seldom met a dictator he couldn’t embrace, so Qaddafi should not worry about the former American president’s veto.
As for Desmond Tutu: He has demanded the United States apologize for unseating Saddam, whose slaughter of innocents makes Qaddafi look like an amateur, so he certainly shouldn’t object to the mad colonel. Perhaps together they can commiserate about the pernicious influence of world Jewry.
Of course, any group arrogant and self-righteous enough to appoint themselves “The Elders “should be laughed off the world stage. I guess that’s another reason why Qaddafi would fit right in.