NPT: A dissapointing opening day in New York

Today’s opening speeches on the NPT meeting in New York for me was a bit disappointing in two ways.   Not the usual nonsense from Ahmadinejad that was the typical mix of appealing to the developing world , old-style non-aligned nations and rhetoric that is for his domestic consumption.  It was the US’s actions and responses that left what I believe is lacking the momentum needed to be successful.   It was also a step backwards in what has been a good 12 months of foreign policy initiatives.

The first error was the act of the US, British and French delegations walking out on the Iranian President’s speech. Simply put that act did more for Ahamdinejad’s case then it did for those three western nations that should have known better.  The Iranians were smart enough not to walk out and at least a third of those nations present will have considered the walking out on a Head of State’s speech as insulting and a bad breech of protocol – regardless of which country and what policies they have.  They would have that same view if it was the Presidents of North Korea, Burma or even Sudan. 

The second was for me the most disappointing.   Though by far not a supporter left leaning politics and in particular the Obama Administration’s economic blunders, I have been supporting their foreign policy which I think has been inspiring, exactly what is needed and most of all a massive improvement to the disaster of the past Bush nightmare.  Today’s speech by Secretary of State Hilary Clinton perhaps has changed if not destroyed that enthusiasm.

Clinton’s speech talked about the necessity of keeping high standards and dealing with strength against those nations breeching those high standards.  It condemned those nations that left the NPT to avoid scrutiny and then talked about making a nuclear-free Middle-East.    I make no denial that it is my very strong opinion that any nation condemning Iran’s nuclear programme in such terms looks the fool when the single issue that will make any NPT programme a farce is not dealt with.  That the State of Israel is not a member, is not subject to protocols, inspections, is in and often in conflict, has an undeclared and unknown number of nuclear weapons and has the highest percentage of radical, ultra-religious and known confrontational policies than any other country on the planet.   They may be officially a democracy – but so is Iran.  

Most certainly I support the existence and rights of the State of Israel – for me there is no question there.  Equally, I support their right to defend themselves and be able to live in tranquillity and without threat.  I do though have serious reservations about their dealings in the Occupied Territories, their military leadership and most of all the level of radicalism within its political structure.    The format of their politics and how radical parties and religious groups dominate life in that country is significant and hypocritically that same country constantly complains about that very same problem with its neighbours.  

Additionally, that country in the past relied on an unquestioning veto from the United States when it is criticized.  That veto comes because of those close ties and strong lobby interests from the Jewish community within the United States.   Recently that blind level of protection, which has been abused many times, withering and seen for the inequity that it has been, which was a good step.   That today’s speech by Secretary Clinton failed to point that out will be a disappointment to many and raises questions why this golden opportunity has been wasted. 

I certainly believe that it is in the best interest of Israel and peace in the Middle-East generally for that country to shrug-off its reliance on old-world bias that will undoubtably dry-up soon, stand up and be counted as a full and active member of the international community and not just when it suits its radical politics of the moment.  Join the NPT and open itself to all forms of scrutiny, international laws and tribunals and then with a clean and unquestionable slate it can then ‘demand’ protection and any justifiable victim status from attacks.   To not do so, with its actions and questionable behaviour will always be judged suspect by almost every nation on this planet and soon even by its past loyal bodyguard.

About donny2811
Trots Nederlands, goed gereist en een begerige politieke centrist met een speciale afkeer voor basissen.

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