Sunday 22 October 2023

A Little Bragging.


To help de-escalate the Gaza crisis António Guterres, the United Nations Secretary General, has pleaded for:
  1. Release of hostages.
  2. Ceasefire.
  3. Humanitarian access to Gaza, so that essential supplies of food, water, medicine, and fuel are delivered immediately.
That sounds reasonable to me. More importantly, Australian organisations, ranging from the ACTU to charities – independently of the UN – were already asking the Albanese Government to lobby “like-minded” nations for something like that. So, I wasn’t surprised when last week two UN Security Council members proposed draft resolutions reflecting similar requests.

A week ago today, on Monday 16th, the Russian Federation submitted to the SC a draft resolution calling for “a humanitarian ceasefire, release of all hostages, aid access, and safe evacuation of civilians”.

To be approved such proposals need no less than nine votes from the 15 SC members (ten non-permanent members[*], plus the five permanent members with veto power: China, France, Russian Federation, the United Kingdom, and the United States).

Four countries voted against the draft (France, Japan, the UK, and the US – unsurprisingly) and six abstained (Albania, Brazil, Ecuador, Ghana, Malta, and Switzerland). With only five votes (China, Gabon, Mozambique, Russia, and the United Arab Emirates) the proposal was rejected.

Thursday 12 October 2023

The Looming Genocide? (Updated).

Part of a museum exhibit in Rwanda about the country's genocide [A]

Over-use of a word leads to it losing meaning. Think of “neoliberalism”. More recently no current affairs show goes by without the word “trauma” being heard.