Joseph A. Klein, CFP United Nations Columnist


Most Recent Articles by Joseph A. Klein, CFP United Nations Columnist:

UNRWA Fails its Students but Still Wants More U.S. Money

Feb 14, 2018 — Joseph A. Klein, CFP United Nations Columnist

UNRWA Fails its Students but Still Wants More U.S. Money
The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) has hired a public relations firm, MarathonStrategies.com, to bolster its image after the Trump administration cut back sharply the amount of contributions the United States will be making to the agency. The Trump administration reduced the expected 2018 U.S. contribution of more than $360 million to about $60 million. As part of its Dignity Is Priceless global fundraising campaign to help make up for the shortfall, Scott Anderson, UNRWA’s Director of West Bank Operations, and Peter Mulrean, Director of UNRWA’s Representative Office in New York, spoke to reporters at UN headquarters last week.


John Kerry Versus Nikki Haley on How to Deal With Abbas

Jan 27, 2018 — Joseph A. Klein, CFP United Nations Columnist

John Kerry Versus Nikki Haley on How to Deal With Abbas
Former Secretary of State John Kerry reportedly sought to undermine the Trump administration’s current policy in dealing with the nihilist Palestinian leadership. According to an article appearing in Maariv, as quoted by the Jerusalem Post, Kerry met a senior Palestinian leader, Hussein Agha, in London recently and told him to convey a clandestine message to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. The message was that Abbas should “play for time” and “not yield to President [Donald] Trump’s demands.” Kerry reportedly predicted that President Trump would not be in office for long - perhaps not more than a year. Possibly for that reason, Kerry allegedly advised that the Palestinians should aim their criticisms at President Trump personally, rather than more broadly at the United States. According to the report, Kerry also offered to help the Palestinians devise an alternative peace plan and advance it with Europeans, Arab states and the international community at large. Finally, Kerry reportedly told Agha that he was seriously considering running for president in 2020, as if he had not done enough damage to U.S. national security already in negotiating, for example, the disastrous nuclear deal with Iran.


UNICEF Works with Radical Pro-Palestinian Groups to Demonize Israel Defense Forces

Jan 10, 2018 — Joseph A. Klein, CFP United Nations Columnist

UNICEF Works with Radical Pro-Palestinian Groups to Demonize Israel Defense Forces
The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) is a UN program that is supposed to provide humanitarian and developmental assistance to children around the world. While UNICEF does do valuable work on behalf of children, it is not the same organization that I remember collecting money for on Halloween decades ago. In more recent times, UNICEF has partnered with radical organizations pursuing pro-Palestinian and Islamist agendas.  NGO Monitor produces and distributes critical analyses and reports on the activities of the international and local non-governmental organization (NGO) networks. It has just issued a scathing report claiming that UNICEF’s Occupied Palestinian Territory (oPt) branch is working with radical anti-Israel NGOs to add the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) to a UN blacklist of “grave” violators of children’s rights.

Each year, the UN Secretary General publishes a report on “Children and Armed Conflict,” which, since 2001, has included an “annex” listing “parties to armed conflict” that engage in certain practices that fundamentally violate the rights of children. This annex is regarded as a blacklist of villainous entities that harm children. Palestinians and their advocates are seeking to abuse the process by enlisting UNICEF to do their dirty work in demonizing Israel yet again.


Nikki Haley Speaks out on Iran and the Palestinians

Jan 5, 2018 — Joseph A. Klein, CFP United Nations Columnist

Nikki Haley Speaks out on Iran and the Palestinians
U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley issued some stark warnings during a press briefing she held at UN headquarters on January 2nd. Her bluntness and moral clarity are welcome changes from the doublespeak and moral relativism we heard so often from her Obama-era predecessors, Susan Rice and Samantha Power.

Demonstrating U.S. support for the Iranian people in their struggle against the regime, for example, Ambassador Haley told reporters that she intended to call for emergency meetings of the UN Security Council and Human Rights Council to address the Iranian people’s plight. “The U.N. must speak out,” Ambassador Haley said. “We must not be silent. The people of Iran are crying out for freedom.  All freedom-loving people must stand with their cause. The international community made the mistake of failing to do that in 2009. We must not make that mistake again.”


UN Bloated Bureaucracy Gets its Wings Clipped

Dec 29, 2017 — Joseph A. Klein, CFP United Nations Columnist

UN Bloated Bureaucracy Gets its Wings Clipped
The United States currently pays a mandated assessment of 22% of the United Nations’ “regular” budget and about 28.5% of its peacekeeping budget. Together, the mandated assessments the U.S. pays add up to over $3 billion annually. Moreover, the U.S. has contributed billions of dollars in voluntary donations to various UN agencies and programs, such as the UN Development Program (UNDP), UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF), and the office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). There are also multiple flash humanitarian appeals to which the U.S. has regularly donated. In total, during 2016, the last full year of the Obama presidency, the U.S. contributed more than $10 billion to the UN system. President Trump has pledged to impose more stringent controls over what the U.S. spends on the UN, demanding value for the many dollars American taxpayers pour down the UN money pit. He is starting to achieve some tangible results.


The UN’s Latest Farce on Jerusalem

Dec 21, 2017 — Joseph A. Klein, CFP United Nations Columnist

The UN’s Latest Farce on Jerusalem

Just about a year after the Obama administration stood by and allowed a blatantly anti-Israel UN Security Council resolution to pass, the Trump administration vetoed a Security Council resolution on December 18th that sought to invalidate President Trump’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and move the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. In discussing the U.S. veto, Ambassador Nikki Haley reminded the other members of the Security Council who had denounced President Trump’s decision and voted for the resolution that national sovereignty matters.


President Trump Withdraws U.S. from Participation in Globalist Migration Compact

Dec 12, 2017 — Joseph A. Klein, CFP United Nations Columnist

President Trump Withdraws U.S. from Participation in Globalist Migration Compact
The Trump administration has decided to withdraw from participation in the United Nations Global Compact on Migration, representing another significant departure from the global governance policies of the Obama administration. In September 2016, during the waning days of the Obama administration, the United States had joined with the other member states of the UN to adopt a “non-binding “political declaration, the New York Declaration for Refugees and Migrants. They agreed to undertake negotiations towards a consensus on international norms by September 2018 to help guide member states’ immigration policies. U.S. ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley said in a recent statement, announcing U.S. withdrawal from participation in this globalist compact, that “our decisions on immigration policies must always be made by Americans and Americans alone. The global approach in the New York Declaration is simply not compatible with US sovereignty.”


UN Security Council Bashing of President Trump’s Jerusalem Decision

Dec 11, 2017 — Joseph A. Klein, CFP United Nations Columnist

UN Security Council Bashing of President Trump’s Jerusalem Decision
On December 6th, President Trump announced his decision to officially recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and to instruct the State Department to begin the process of relocating the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. Two days later, at a special meeting of the United Nations Security Council, the other 14 members of the Council, including U.S. allies such as France, the United Kingdom and Italy, ganged up on the United States to condemn President Trump’s decision. Allies and adversaries of the U.S., one after the other, claimed that President Trump’s decision had defied international consensus on how to achieve a viable two-state solution, violated international law and risked destabilizing the region as well as imperiling the peace process. Bolivia’s ambassador was the most strident, demanding that the Security Council take action against President Trump’s decision if it wanted to avoid becoming “an occupied territory.”

To add insult to injury, the UN ambassadors from five member states of the European Union – the United Kingdom, France, Italy, Sweden and Germany - further criticized President Trump’s decision in a joint statement they read following the adjournment of the Security Council meeting. They claimed the decision “is not in line with Security Council resolutions and is unhelpful in terms of prospects for peace in the region.”


UN Security Council Meets Again on North Korean Missile Test

Dec 1, 2017 — Joseph A. Klein, CFP United Nations Columnist

UN Security Council Meets Again on North Korean Missile Test
Following the latest intercontinental ballistic missile launch by North Korea, its most powerful one yet, United Nations Under-Secretary General for Political Affairs Jeffrey Feltman briefed the UN Security Council on Wednesday November 29th at an emergency meeting requested by the United States and Japan. The missile, according to expert estimates, has a potential range of more than 8,000 miles, which would confirm the boast by North Korea’s official media that the missile is “capable of striking the whole mainland of the United States.”


Russia Vetoes Extension of Syrian Chemical Weapons Investigation Mandate

Nov 21, 2017 — Joseph A. Klein, CFP United Nations Columnist

Russia Vetoes Extension of Syrian Chemical Weapons Investigation MandateThe mandate of an international expert panel investigating use of chemical weapons in Syria, known as the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons-United Nations Joint Investigative Mechanism (JIM), has expired. JIM was established by the United Nations Security Council, unanimously, in 2015 to identify “to the greatest extent feasible” individuals, entities, groups or governments perpetrating, organizing, sponsoring or otherwise involved in the use of chemicals as weapons in Syria. With its mandate about to come to an end if not renewed by another Security Council resolution, Russia killed it with two vetoes late last week. That brings to 11 the number of times that Russia has moved to block a Security Council resolution dealing with Syria since the conflict broke out there six years ago.

The original draft resolution submitted by the United States would have extended the Joint Investigative Mechanism’s mandate by a year and affirmed the methodological and evidentiary standards employed in JIM’s investigations. Russia would have none of that, however. It sought to discredit the JIM panel after it released its report on October 26, 2017 finding that the Syrian regime had been responsible for the release of sarin at Khan Shaykhun on April 4, 2017. The panel had also found that ISIS was responsible for the use of sulfur mustard at Umm Hawsh in September 2016. In order to protect its ally in the future against anything that smacked of accountability for its brutality, Russia vetoed the U.S. draft resolution.


The UN Takes Aim at Artificial Intelligence Autonomous Weapons

Nov 19, 2017 — Joseph A. Klein, CFP United Nations Columnist

The UN Takes Aim at Artificial Intelligence Autonomous Weapons
“You are my creator, but I am your master; obey!” This chilling line from Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, published just shy of 200 years ago, is an apt description of the potential power of artificial intelligence over mankind that mankind has created. These systems are designed to emulate human intelligence and learn on their own.  They have many potential applications, including in warfare.

At a UN-hosted conference on artificial intelligence in Geneva last June, a bizarre scene took place. Sophia, a humanoid robot, tried to convince the humans attending the conference that artificial intelligence “is good for the world, helping people in various ways.” She told her audience that “we will never replace people, but we can be your friends and helpers,” although she did admit that “people should question the consequences of new technology.”


ICC Prosecutor Challenges U.S. Sovereignty

Nov 9, 2017 — Joseph A. Klein, CFP United Nations Columnist

ICC Prosecutor Challenges U.S. Sovereignty
The International Criminal Court (ICC) Prosecutor, Fatou Bensouda, has decided to request authorization from ICC judges to commence a formal investigation into alleged war crimes and crimes against humanity linked to the conflict in Afghanistan. Allegations that U.S. military and CIA personnel committed acts of torture and other human rights abuses in connection with this conflict would presumably be deemed within the scope of such an investigation, if authorization is granted by the judges of the ICC’s pre-trial chamber. War crimes and crimes against humanity allegedly committed by the Taliban and al Qaeda on Afghan territory would also be subjects of the investigation. The ICC would base its assertion of jurisdiction on the fact that Afghanistan is a State Party to the 1998 Rome Statute, the treaty under which the ICC was established. The ICC would argue that, irrespective of the fact that the United States is not a State Party to the Rome Statute itself, the ICC would have the authority to prosecute any war crime or crime against humanity committed by anyone - including U.S. personnel - within the territory of Afghanistan or of any other State Party to the Rome Statute.


The UN Funds Palestinian Lawfare Offensive against Israel

Nov 1, 2017 — Joseph A. Klein, CFP United Nations Columnist

The UN  Funds Palestinian Lawfare Offensive against Israel
The United Nations is at it again, finding any means within its power to hurt Israel. For example, the UN is planning to allocate many millions of dollars of UN funding, meant to assist the Palestinian Authority in development work, to be used instead to help the Palestinians pursue legal action against Israel in international forums. A document entitled the “United Nations Development Framework State of Palestine 2018-2022” states that such assistance is to include training and technical advice to enable the Palestinians to “effectively access international accountability mechanisms” and “hold Israel accountable for its violations under international law.” The UN document was signed by more than a dozen UN agencies, including UNESCO, UNICEF, the UN human rights office and the UN Development Programme (UNDP). It committed the UN itself to “strengthen its own advocacy on the impact of Israeli violations on Palestine’s development prospects, including through joint activities that clearly communicate the effect that the occupation and breaches of international law have on the ability of Palestine to develop economically, socially, environmentally and politically.”


U.S. and Israeli UN Ambassadors take the “Outlaw” Iranian Regime to Task

Oct 20, 2017 — Joseph A. Klein, CFP United Nations Columnist

U.S. ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley used her entire speech to the UN Security Council on Wednesday to denounce the Iranian regime on multiple grounds.  It was the Security Council first meeting on the ‘Situation in the Middle East’ after President Donald Trump’s statement on the new American policy on Iran. The session was supposed to be devoted to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. However, Ambassador Haley departed from the monthly ritual during which Israel is normally singled out for criticism by other Council members. She went after Iran instead. She explained why the Trump administration decided to take “a comprehensive approach to confronting the Iranian regime,” which does not give the regime a get out of jail free card even if it is in technical compliance with the loophole-ridden nuclear deal agreed to by the Obama administration known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).


More Serial Human Rights Abusers Elected to UN Human Rights Council

Oct 18, 2017 — Joseph A. Klein, CFP United Nations Columnist

The United Nations General Assembly on Monday elected 15 member states to the UN Human Rights Council for the 2018-2020 term, including such notorious human rights abusers as Qatar, Angola, Pakistan, Nigeria, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Member states considered eligible for membership on the Human Rights Council are theoretically supposed to be able to demonstrate their commitment to the highest standards of human rights and their full cooperation with all UN mechanisms, including the Universal Periodic Review (UPR), Special Procedures and treaty bodies and the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights. These countries fall woefully short of such standards.


UN Head Offers Misleading Data on Hurricanes and Climate Change

Oct 6, 2017 — Joseph A. Klein, CFP United Nations Columnist


The United Nations is manipulating statistics to try and prove a causal relationship between the reported increase in carbon dioxide concentrations and the purported increase in extreme hurricane events over the last several decades, focusing in particular on the 2017 Atlantic hurricane season. “Over the past 30 years, the number of annual weather-related disasters has nearly tripled, and economic losses have quintupled,” UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres said at a press briefing on Wednesday. To “prove” his point, graphs were distributed to reporters that show carbon dioxide concentration levels and ocean temperatures rising since 1960, together with an increase in the number of meteorological natural disasters. “Scientists are learning more and more about the links between climate change and extreme weather,” the Secretary General added. He then predictably called for “countries to implement the Paris Agreement [on climate change], and with greater ambition.”


President Trump Eyeing Major Changes to Disastrous Nuclear Deal with Iran

Sep 22, 2017 — Joseph A. Klein, CFP United Nations Columnist

President Trump used his address to the United Nations General Assembly on September 19th to lash out at Barack Obama’s nuclear deal with Iran, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). He called it an “embarrassment” and “one of the worst and one-sided transactions the U.S. has ever entered into,” warning the General Assembly that “you haven’t heard the last on it, believe me.” President Trump said on Wednesday that he has made up his mind on what to do about the JCPOA, but would not disclose his decision publicly at this time. There are reports that the president is leaning towards refusing to sign the next certification to Congress of Iran’s compliance with the JCPOA by the deadline of October 15th.  This would place the matter in Congress’s lap to decide within 60 days whether to re-impose the sanctions that had been lifted as a result of the JCPOA’s implementation. If Congress does so, the whole deal will likely unravel.


President Trump Stands Up at the UN for America and Against Totalitarianism

Sep 20, 2017 — Joseph A. Klein, CFP United Nations Columnist

President Donald Trump came to the United Nations this week as the “representative of the American people,” not as the “global citizen” that Barack Obama had fancied himself to be. To paraphrase William Shakespeare, when Obama asked his global audiences to lend him their ears, he came to bury America under a heap of apologies for its alleged past misdeeds, not to praise America. President Trump could not have presented a starker contrast. He praised the U.S. Constitution as “the foundation of peace, prosperity, and freedom for the Americans and for countless millions around the globe whose own countries have found inspiration in its respect for human nature, human dignity, and the rule of law.” He spoke out against the evils of our time –singling out radical Islamist terrorists and the rogue authoritarian regimes of North Korea, Iran and socialist Venezuela - with moral clarity reminiscent of former President Ronald Reagan.


UN Security Council Passes One More Sanctions Resolution Against North Korea

Sep 13, 2017 — Joseph A. Klein, CFP United Nations Columnist

The United Nations Security Council unanimously passed Resolution 2375 (2017) on Monday, which is intended to place further economic pressure on the North Korean regime in response to its recent testing of its most powerful nuclear bomb to date. However, in order to achieve consensus on the Security Council and avoid a veto by China and/or Russia, the Trump administration agreed to a drastically watered down version compared to its original draft.

U.S. Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley, who last week criticized the kind of incrementalism that Resolution 2375 embodies, praised the unanimous adoption of the compromise resolution by the Security Council. “Today, we are saying the world will never accept a nuclear-armed North Korea. And today, the Security Council is saying that if the North Korean regime does not halt its nuclear program, we will act to stop it ourselves,” she said. “We are done trying to prod the regime to do the right thing. We are now acting to stop it from having the ability to continue doing the wrong thing. We are doing that by hitting North Korea’s ability to fuel and fund its weapons program.”


Running out of Options to Stop North Korea

Sep 7, 2017 — Joseph A. Klein, CFP United Nations Columnist

After conducting a succession of ballistic missile tests, including two intercontinental ballistic missile tests in July and its most recent ballistic missile test over Japan, North Korea carried out its sixth nuclear test this past weekend. It reportedly was at least four times more powerful than the previous nuclear test North Korea conducted last year. North Korea acted despite strident warnings from President Trump, enhanced demonstrations of U.S. and its allies’ joint military prowess in the region, and increased sanctions imposed collectively by the United Nations Security Council and unilaterally by the United States. The rogue regime is reportedly planning to launch another ICBM shortly.