The UN Human Rights Council has appointed anti-Israel/anti-West Canadian law professor Stanley Michael Lynk, of Western University in London, Ontario, to the position of “Special Rapporteur on Palestinian territories.” This so-called job was created in 1993 “to investigate Israel’s violations of the principles and bases of international law,” and it has been described by the Jerusalem Post as “an integral part of the systematic bias toward Israel that plagues almost every corner of the UN,” and also as “the only position that never expires.”
Lynk brings to the UN Human Rights Council an extensive history of anti-Israel activism. He has taken a leadership role in Arab lobby groups, including CEPAL (Canadian-Palestinian Educational Exchange), for which he sits on their advisory board. CEPAL promotes Israel Apartheid Week and Boycott and Divestment drives, calls for Israel’s prosecution for “war crimes,” and has featured the infamous Norm Finkelstein at one of its conferences. Finkelstein has been quoted in Haaretz for the bizarre statements he has made: that “nobody really defends Israel anymore” and “if you go on college campuses, there are some Hillel faithfuls who are bringing an IDF soldier to try to explain that not all IDF soldiers are war criminals.” He also declares that Israel has “lost the battle for public opinion” and arrogantly predicts that “once support for Israeli policy becomes widely unacceptable in the United States, the ‘self-designated voices for Israel,’ as he calls them, will quickly drop out.” Finkelstein once justified Palestinian violence, stating that “international law says people fighting for self-determination can use force in order to achieve their independence.”
In accordance with the aggressive anti-Semitic and anti-Israel activism that emanates from CEPAL, UN Watch reported that Michael Lynk has supported the elimination of Israel in “One State” conferences and has stated odiously that “the solution” dates back to 1948, to which he refers as “the start of ethnic cleansing” by Israel when it was founded. One need only take a glance back in history to recognize that the British Partition Plan favored the Arabs in designating a small strip of land to Israel, in its aim to create independent Arab and Jewish States. Yet Israel was attacked by five Arab States seeking its obliteration from its birth, and is still forced to defend itself against annihilation and terrorist attacks against its citizens today.
Lynk’s discreditable and influential appointment directly empowers his ambitions to delegitimize Israel and ultimately to aid Israel’s enemies, which seek to destroy it. Yet Lynk’s menacing views do not stop at unjustifiably bashing Israel — the only country that exemplifies human rights in the Middle East. UN Watch also reported that Lynk blamed the 9/11 attacks on Western nations, prompting it to publish in a statement referring to Brussels: “one day after Islamists murdered and maimed hundreds in the heart of Europe, the UN’s appointment of someone who instinctively blames such attacks on the alleged crimes of Western nations sends absolutely the worst message, at the worst time.”
Among the UN Human Rights Council are some of the basest human rights abusers: Saudi Arabia (which still stones women and sanctions beheadings and cutting off of hands), Cuba (which imposes arbitrary imprisonments, extrajudicial executions, and limits on freedom of expression), China (which enforces detention without trial, surveillance, house arrests, and imprisonment of human rights defenders), Nigeria (plagued by inter-communal conflict, abuses and murder of Christians and minorities in the north by the jihadist group Boko Haram and human rights violations by the Nigerian security forces).
On the heels of the Lynk appointment came further bad news, that the UN Human Rights Council had voted in favor of creating a “blacklist” of companies operating in the West Bank, East Jerusalem and the Golan Heights. The motion – which no countries voted against — was put forward by the Palestinian Authority and Arab states. European Union nations opposed the creation of the list, but yet they did not vote against the resolution, they only abstained. In response to the vote, Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu blasted the outcome, saying that the UN Security Council “has turned into an anti-Israel circus, which attacks the only democracy in the Middle East and ignores the blatant violations of Iran, Syria and North Korea.”
Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister Stephane Dion recently announced a contribution of $15 million to the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, and stated that Canada wants to re-engage with it as part of the Liberal government’s broader embrace of the United Nations. A spokesman for Dion explained that while Canada recognizes the shortcomings of the council, it also has goals (clearly unrealistic) of engaging in it directly in hopes to improve it.
The appointment of Professor Lynk by the U.N. Human Rights Council is a blatant step in the wrong direction. B’nai Brith Canada declared that Lynk has assumed “the mantle of chief propagandist for some of the world’s worst human rights violators.” The group also pointed out Lynk’s “long history of comparing Israel to the Nazis and promoting anti-Israel campaigns,” adding that the Human Rights Council “has demonstrated its intent to continue its ongoing agenda of demonizing the world’s only Jewish state.” The Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Centre for Holocaust Studies, meanwhile, is calling on the Canadian government to denounce Lynk’s appointment and to withdraw its funding.
Christine Williams is an award-winning broadcast journalist; advisor to Canada’s Office of Religious Freedoms; and Public Affairs/Media Consultant, International Christian Embassy Jerusalem–Canada.