Recently, it has been reported that an employee of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) in Gaza was elected to the Hamas political leadership. This employee has been fired pending an investigation. If the aforementioned is proven true, this should not come as a surprise to anyone who is aware of the way the Palestinian terrorists use and abuse the UN and its institutions, particularly the UNRWA.

The UNRWA has been operating since 1950 to provide Palestinian refugees with education, health, relief, social services and other services until they can be permanently settled in their own state. They are the only refugee group to receive such a huge amount of resources and money with their own special UN institution exclusively dedicated to helping them with their needs. No other refugee group receives such attention and help. Beneath this superficial idealism that is the official position of the UNRWA, lies an institution that is used and abused by terrorists to kill and maim innocents and to advance their radical agenda.

Since the Second Intifada, there have been videos and pictures that show UNRWA vehicles being used by armed terrorists as getaway cars. UNRWA workers have been caught using their vehicles to transport weapons, ammunition and explosives for terrorist groups.

UNRWA funds have been used to print anti-Semitic books and summer camps for aspiring young martyrs for terrorist groups have been held at UNRWA schools.

Recently it was reported by the Middle East Media Research Institute that the UNRWA had decided to shelve plans to make changes to the Palestinian school curriculum that, among other things, would have removed maps showing Palestine from the river Jordan to the Mediterranean Sea and would have taught about the Holocaust. Due to pressure from the Palestinian Authority and Hamas these changes were not carried out, because in the words of the UNRWA, “in conformity with its practice since the 1950s based on an agreement with UNESCO, UNRWA teaches host-country curricula in its schools.” In other words, the PA and Hamas dictate what should be taught in UNRWA schools not the UNRWA.

Another NGO, the Palestinian Media Watch, have documented multiple examples of the misuse of UN funds. This includes when the UNRWA, along with other sponsors, sponsored a tree planting ceremony in memory of the terrorists who died during the September 2015 terror wave. This terror wave claimed the lives of 34 and injured 400 Israelis. The ceremony was conducted by the Palestinian NGO Union of Agricultural Work Committees which is co-sponsored by the UNRWA. A further example is when the UN funded an event at al-Quds University, that honoured a terrorist that killed 2 and injured 13 people in a car ramming attack in Jerusalem.

Since the Gaza Strip was taken over by Hamas following Israel’s unilateral withdrawal, the abuse has multiplied greatly. In the 2014 war between Israel and Hamas, three Israeli soldiers were killed when they found a booby-trapped tunnel that was connected to a UNRWA building. In that same war, multiple rockets were stored on UNRWA sites, such as hospitals and schools; particularly sensitive locations. Therefore, when Israel justifiably attacks these locations, it serves as a media weapon against them when the pictures of bombed out schools and hospitals are printed in the press.

The UNRWA Commissioner-General, Pierre Krahenbuhl, even admitted that terrorists were using their buildings to store rockets in the summer war in 2014. During the same war it was reported by several media outlets that Hamas terrorists had threatened to kill UNRWA workers if they revealed that Hamas were using UN buildings for war purposes.

The NGO UNWatch held a joint subcommittee hearing on the 2 February 2017 before the U.S. Congress and expressed concern about the number of UNRWA school teachers in the Palestinian camps who had expressed on Facebook incitement to Jihad, anti-Semitism, holocaust denial and praising Hitler. This list is made up of 40 teachers working in camps in Lebanon, Jordan, Gaza, and Syria. With comments like; “I pray to God that you all die from a stroke, otherwise you will die from an axe”, posted by Tarek Abu Ghazelah from Lebanon, after a synagogue massacre in Jerusalem. Or, a further example; “We don’t want no truce or solution. All we want is to strike Tel Aviv,” and “We have filled up their air raid shelters – oh Palestinians, you can be proud”, in a song posted by Adnan Serdanah. See the link below for the full report: https://www.unwatch.org/130-page-report-unrwa-teachers-incite-terrorism-antisemitism/

It is not just in Palestinian camps that this abuse goes on, but also in Syria it was reported that the Al-Qaeda branch, Jabat al-Nusra, had captured vehicles and uniforms of UN workers and was using them to carry out attacks. A UN vehicle had been used in bomb attacks in Daraa in the southern west Syria against Assad’s army. In a similar vein, a picture of a UN vehicle with the black flag of Al-Qaeda raised on top was circulating the web. The neutrality of the UN is trampled on and taken advantage of to advance their evil agenda.  

Within the UN Security Council, Israel is condemned again and again while tyrants and others who deny other humans of their basic rights are not mentioned and are allowed to speak against the only democracy in the Middle East. The abuse of the UN against Israel can be encapsulated in the moment in 1975 when Idi Amin, the tyrant and dictator of Uganda who had people thrown alive to crocodiles and ate the flesh off his decapitated victims, submitted a resolution condemning “Zionism is racism”. The resolution was passed by 72 to 35 votes.

This goes far beyond irony.

The examples mentioned above are a small insight of what has gone on within the UN and its institutions.

The abuse of the UN is a not a minor matter. It white washes and provides cover for the actions of terrorists and condemns those who speak for human rights and democracy. Unless there are some changes, this great institution will continue to be used and abused for the foreseeable future.

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