On August 3 the United Nations General Assembly voted on a resolution written by Saudi Arabia condemning both the government of Syria for the preponderance if not all the violence in the country and Russia and China for not conceding to Western and Persian Gulf monarchies’ demands for “regime change” in Damascus.
In an irrefutable demonstration of how the U.S. and its allies have come to dominate world affairs in the post-Cold War era, the vote was 133 in favor, 12 opposed and 31 abstaining.
The 12 nations that voted against the slightly revised resolution – references to President Bashar Assad resigning his position and new sanctions against his nation were excised – are all nations that are already or could soon be the targets of a comparable regime-change package: Internal armed insurrection supported from abroad, assorted “color revolution” scenarios, onerous and strictly politically motivated sanctions and embargoes, military threats from across their borders or from Western aircraft carriers off their coasts, travel bans and the seizure of overseas financial assets, and unrelenting information warfare conducted by all but unmatched Western media outlets.
Those 12 nations are Russia, China, Syria, Iran, Belarus, Bolivia, Cuba, Myanmar, Nicaragua, North Korea, Venezuela and Zimbabwe.
In a similar General Assembly vote in February, Ecuador voted against the anti-Syrian resolution and Myanmar did not.
The 31 nations that abstained in the recent vote are guilty of cowardice and an arrant lack of principle. Many of the 133 that voted in favor of the resolution will find that, far from securing a reprieve in becoming the next Syria, they may have hastened their own demise by endorsing a precedent that will not end with Syria. Syria made no move to oppose the war against Libya conducted by the U.S., NATO and their Persian Gulf allies last year and has now become the next Libya.
Along the lines of the fable by Aesop, the world’s nations will either bell the cat or be devoured by it one by one.
Ahead of the UN vote, Voice of Russia ran an interview with Vyacheslav Matuzov, a former diplomat and leading Russian expert on Middle East affairs, in which he spoke to this effect:
“I think that after the crushing of the Soviet Union, the U.S. forgot about international law, about Security Council resolutions, about all legitimacy regarding their actions. We watched these things in Kosovo, we watched these things in Bosnia, in Iraq, in Afghanistan and in many other places in the world. I think that now the U.S. demonstrates a unipolar approach to the solution of all hot issues in the world. I think it is a continuation of an American geopolitical game aiming at imposing on the world their will as the last judge for any problems and questions existing in our globe.”
“Americans look at the Russian and the Chinese position as a confrontation. So, it is confronting not only the Syrian regime, it is confronting international law, it is imposing on Russia and China new rules of the world order that they prefer to be dominating in the 21st century in relation to the Russian Federation, with the Chinese Republic, with all the world. I think that we are witnessing new efforts of the U.S. administration to impose on the world the new order of a power that can dominate and can give orders to other states.”
The resolution in question contains the words “deploring the Security Council failure,” which is a reference to the unprecedented triple joint vetoes exercised by Russia and China in the Security Council against resolutions aimed at Syria last October and this February and July.
It also demands “an inclusive Syrian-led political transition to a democratic, pluralistic political system.” This is from a draft written by Saudi Arabia.
Syrian ambassador to the UN Bashar Ja’afari rightly denounced the resolution’s main sponsors, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Bahrain, as “despotic oligarchies.”
After the vote Russian UN Ambassador Vitaly Churkin was equally blunt, warning that it “will aggravate the confrontational approach to resolution of the Syrian crisis and will in no way facilitate movement of the sides toward a platform of dialogue and a search for a peaceful resolution of the crisis in the interests of the Syrian people.”
He also said the resolution “is extremely one-sided and was written as if there was no armed opposition at all,” adding that “At a time when the Security Council is still dealing with this issue, it is inappropriate and contrary to the UN Charter to put to the vote draft resolutions on this issue.”
On the other side of the aisle, comments were made by the Israeli ambassador to the UN, Ron Prosor, that are worth quoting at length for the benefit of the populations of Arab states, nominally progressive defenders of the “Syrian revolution” in the West and the world as a whole.
The Israeli official condemned the “Assad killing machine” and claimed “Assad’s Council of Terror continues to operate ruthlessly in Damascus.”
Again for anyone who believes that the General Assembly vote and its predecessors in the General Assembly, the Security Council and the Human Rights Council are targeted exclusively – or even primarily – at Syria, he added the absurd contention that “on Assad’s advisory board sit Ahmadinejad and Nasrallah, who offer him guidance on how to butcher the Syrian people more effectively,” in allusions to the Iranian president and the leader of Hezbollah. His accusations also included this: “The outside forces that have been instrumental in the slaughter in Syria speak in a Persian accent.”
And, he continued to rant, ”It is time for the international community to hold all three members of this ‘trio of terror’ accountable for their crimes.”
The resolution also called for the securing, perhaps the confiscation, of Syria’s chemical and biological weapons. The Israeli envoy said in regard to that demand: “We shouldn’t pretend a regime that cuts throats of children today will not be prepared to gas them tomorrow.”
The 133 supporters of the resolution have not only singled out the Syrian government for the violence in the country, but in so doing have whitewashed not only the crimes of foreign-armed rebels but those of Israel, Saudi Arabia, the U.S. and its NATO allies who, moreover, slay thousands not on their own territory but on that of other nations.
Attention has been deflected from decades-long unresolved violence and injustice from Palestine to the Western Sahara in favor of portraying the Syrian government, in increasingly hysterical and bellicose tones, as the world’s ultimate bete noire in order to pave the way for Iran to fill the role next and, even more ominously, as the gravest step yet in challenging and confronting Russia and China.