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Madam Speaker, for over 60 years, Israel has had to fight for its mere existence. No other nation has suffered more discrimination and outright threats from the United Nations itself. There have been more U.N. resolutions condemning Israel than any other nation, more than 20 a year.
Approximately 80 percent of country censures issued by the United Nations Human Rights Council are aimed at the nation of Israel, and last week they did it again, issuing another report self-righteously condemning Israel.
But let's just take a look at who some of the members of this so-called ``human rights'' council are. It's really a rogue's gallery of dictators and tyrants.
The Communist countries of Cuba and China have a seat at the U.N. human rights table. These two stellar threats to their own people are self-righteously condemning Israel. The whole world saw China's disrespect for human rights on display in Tiananmen Square. Religious persecutions, the one-child policy, forced abortions for people who already have one child, persecutions of political dissidents are rampant, and speech against the government is brutally suppressed. China is, yes, a truly shining example of human rights. Yeah, right.
And then there is the tiny Communist country of Cuba, you know, the Mario brothers, Fidel and Raul. They have over 250 prisons in that nation. Political dissidents are beaten and tortured in this island paradise of persecution. Some have died in prison from this abuse. Cuba is a nation that denies human rights to its own people.
And then there is Iran. Iran also sits on the United Nations Human Rights Council. Now, what a surprise that is. What legitimate human rights organization would want Iran as a member? Run by the mullahs and the little fella from the desert, Ahmadinejad, Iran systematically violates human rights. Unarmed men and women are still in jail today for peacefully protesting this summer's rigged presidential election. You know, Madam Speaker, the election where the government murdered unarmed students who wanted freedom. The ones who survived were beaten and tortured, they are denied medical care in jail, and some are sexually assaulted by the jailers as retribution. Some Iranian human rights activists simply disappear, never to be seen again.
Amnesty International says that right now they know of eight women at risk of being stoned to death in Iran for adultery. Of course, if a woman is raped in Iran, that sometimes is considered adultery, too. And the male perpetrator, well, he's released.
In 2004, a 13-year-old girl, Zhila Izadi, was sentenced to death by stoning for being raped and impregnated by her 15-year-old brother. One news report says that the international outrage forced a reduction from death to 55 lashes. After Zhila gave birth to the baby, the government stole her child.
The people of Iran and Iranian Americans continue to cry out against their own government's crimes against the Iranian citizens and their violations of human rights.
Iran is also sending money and equipment to worldwide terrorist groups. To make matters worse, the tiny tyrant of Iran, Ahmadinejad, says he wants to wipe all of Israel off the map. He is making nuclear weapons and building intercontinental ballistic missiles. Now, who do you think these missiles are aimed at? And Iran sits on the United Nations Human Rights Council. This rogue's gallery of misfits has no moral basis to sit in judgment of Israel or anyone else for that matter.
Israel has been fighting for its existence ever since it came into being a nation.
In 1967, it was attacked by its neighbors. It gained territory in that defensive war, including in the West Bank, in Gaza and in the Sinai Peninsula. International law requires that land won in a defensive war must be returned when there is a negotiated peace.
Time and again, Israel has placed itself in jeopardy, has given back land and has traded that land for an empty promise of peace, and Israel is still committed to peace.
Israel and the Palestinians need to problem-solve their issues and need to establish a permanent peace for Israel and for the Palestinian community. There must be a mutual respect for Jews and Muslims. Solutions will occur when respect and honesty are present on both sides. What Israel asks in return is that her enemies merely stop trying to kill her people.
Yet the U.N. Human Rights Council continues to bash Israel. Some members of the council are themselves overwhelmingly guilty of human rights violations and of violent crimes against their own people. These hypocrites have no place at the judgment seat, deciding human rights violations for Israel or for any other nation.
And that's just the way it is.