01 April 2009

US to Vie for UN Human Rights Council Seat

The headline wasn't particularly disturbing. Neither was this:
The United States is to run for a seat on the United Nations human rights council, the US state department has said. The decision reverses the position of the previous US administration under George Bush, to in effect boycott the council over its criticism of Israel.

In fact, I began to feel hopeful when reading that last line. But then there was this:
Susan Rice, Washington's ambassador to the UN, said that membership of the council would be "a tool to advance our interests".

"We don't view it as legitimizing the council. We will stand up and forcefully lead on those issues that we care most deeply about," she said.

"A tool to advance our interests." Not in any way to be construed as "legitimizing the council." "Forcefully lead."

Why, then, other than to de-legitimize the human rights council is the US bothering? Seems to me the US wants to remove what teeth the council has left.

Recommend this post