Columnist denounces Israel’s opponents, seeks to replace U.N. with Covenant of Democratic Nations

From left: Host Andrew Viterbi; Roz Rothstein, CEO StandWithUs; Edwin Black; Gary Ratner, SWU Senior Executive; Sara Miller, Director SWU San Diego; Chelsea Natan, Associate Director SWU San Diego and Daniella Lewis, president of SWU SD, attended the Herzl Dinner for SWU’s donors.

By Donald H. Harrison

Donald H. Harrison

Edwin Black

SAN DIEGO – Author and columnist Edwin Black is touring the United States, Australia, and other democracies to promote the creation of a Covenant of Democratic Nations to replace the United Nations, the latter of which he describes as being so heavily influenced by anti-democratic, authoritarian regimes as to have outlived its usefulness.

The campaign brought Black to Southern California where at a March 2 Herzl Dinner at the Rancho Santa Fe home of Qualcomm co-founder Andrew Viterbi, he addressed 45 “committed donors” of StandWithUs, an activist American grassroots organization that defends Israel and is perhaps best known for its fight against the BDS (Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions) movement.  The following afternoon, Black spoke in a conference room of the Mintz Levin law firm at a lunch-and-learn meeting also sponsored by StandWithUs.

At these two meetings, Black addressed such issues as the campaign to label goods produced in Israel versus those produced in the territories claimed by the Palestinian Authority, and the drive in the U.S. and other countries to defund the Palestinian Authority until it ceases paying salaries to jailed terrorists and to the families of suicide bombers and other slain terrorists.

On the website, Black contends that the U.N. “has outlived its usefulness and must be replaced with a new international body, one comprised solely of those nations governed by democratic principles, devoted to genuine democracy, equality, and peaceful relations throughout the word.”  He adds that “The United States should defund and withdraw from the United Nations and reconstitute the movement to achieve world peace for all in a new world body: The Covenant of Democratic Nations.”

This new body, the website goes on to declare, “will review, re-ratify, amend, or nullify all acts and resolutions of the United Nations and its agencies creating a new body of long-overdue, reformed, and updated international law.”

Formally launched in January, the drive for the Covenant of Democratic Nations has drawn the support of Conservative Republican Congressman Trent Franks of Arizona, who currently serves as a co-chair of the Congressional Israel Allies Caucus.  Additionally, according to the congressman’s official biography, Franks “is the chairman of the National Security Working Group for the Republican Study Committee, taking the lead among the conservative members of Congress on issues relating to national security.”

Sara Miller, director StandWithUs San Diego; Edwin Black; former board member Nina Brodsky and Chelsea Natan, SWU SD Associate Director, attended a Lunch-and-Learn session sponsored by Stand With Us at the Mintz Levin law firm.

Black told the Lunch and Learn session that since its launch, the drive for a Covenant of Democratic Nations has also drawn impetus from the bill by U.S. Senators Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) to defund the U.N.

“It’s not enough to take our marbles and checkbooks and go home,” from the United Nations because “international law would remain,” Black said.  “We need to do this with a new covenant” which would require an international conference with official delegates, leading to an international convention, and then to a treaty among the nations that join.  “At the same time we would defund the United Nations,”
he said.

Black said that many nations, including the United States, have known for a long time that the Palestine Authority has used a large percentage of the foreign aid it receives to underwrite the activities of terrorists against Israel, but those countries have refrained from admitting it out of embarrassment.

He said that the more Jews a Palestinian kills, the higher the stipend he or she will earn while in prison.  “Small acts of terrorism: $500 per month… murdering 20 people, $5,000 to $6,000 per month.”

“When there was a budget shortfall, they didn’t fix roads; instead they paid the prisoners,” Black said.  Today, he continued, “there are numerous pieces of legislation (in the United States) to eliminate the PA subsidy unless salaries stop.”  Among these is the Taylor Force Bill, named for a U.S. Army veteran who was fatally stabbed by an Arab terrorist during a visit to Israel.  The legislation, heavily backed by Christians United For Israel (CUFI), is being carried by Senator Graham.

Besides by foreign government subsidies to the Palestinian Authority, Israeli democracy is also undermined by contributions made by pro-Palestinian non-governmental organizations (NGO’s) to anti-Israel causes, according to Black.

“NGO’s take taxpayer money from U.S., Canada, Europe and use this money to foment hostilities and embarrassment for Israelis (and) fan the flames on college campuses,” Black said.  He told of visiting a West Bank town where every Friday there is a demonstration against the Israeli government, facilitated by such organizations as B’tselem, which, in turn, receives major funding from the New Israel Fund.

Harrison is editor of San Diego Jewish World.  He may be contacted via [email protected]
Columnist Black is a contributing writer to San Diego Jewish World, among other publications.

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