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Home arrow Blog arrow September 2009 arrow September 24, 2009

September 24, 2009
September 24, 2009: Obama, Ahmadinejad, Gaddafi, Empty Chairs and Two Thomas'


I only caught the last few minutes on CNN
of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's speech at the UN on September 23, 2009.

What I witnessed on CNN in those last few minutes was the scroll that Canada and "US delegates walked out over hateful, offensive and anti-Semitic rhetoric."

What I heard [via the translator] in those last few minutes of  Ahmadinejad's speech were his reference to the prophets: Moses, Abraham, Jesus and Mohammed-peace be upon them all- and about spirituality, justice, human rights, love, global reform, monotheism, respect, dignity, wisdom, kindness, forgiveness and compassion.

CNN's scroll and the empty chairs at the UN were followed by CNN pundits who all agreed with each other and I recalled what Thomas Jefferson knew:

"Our liberty cannot be guarded but by the freedom of the press, nor that be limited without danger of losing it…To preserve the freedom of the human mind... and freedom of the press, every spirit should be ready to devote itself to martyrdom; for as long as we may think as we will and speak as we think, the condition of man will proceed in improvement…Our citizens may be deceived for awhile, and have been deceived; but as long as the presses can be protected, we may trust to them for light…Cherish...the spirit of our people, and keep alive their attention. Do not be too severe upon their errors, but reclaim them by enlightening them."


This morning I located
Ahmadinejad's speech, published in New York, by IRNA and have taken the liberty to post it all:


[1] Ahmadinejad: Continuation of world’s status quo impossible

New York, Sept 24, IRNA – IRI President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said in his address at 64th Un General Assembly here Wednesday continuation of status quo in today’s world is impossible.


President Ahmadinejad, who began his address thanking Almighty God for having granted him the chance to attend the “important global assembly”, said that he had already spoken to world leaders about the major challenges with which the world nations have been entangled during the past four years.

He added, “I have also referred to such problems’ roots and causes and the need for reviewing and revising the mentality of the world powers and the need for devising new strategies aimed at solving them.

“I have also reiterated the need for a drastic change in type of viewing and dealing with the human beings and the world developments and to establish new justice seeking and humane systems aimed at constructing a bright future.”

Ahmadinejad said that “today” he wished to continue that discussion.

“It goes without saying that continuation of the status quo of the world is quite impossible. The present unsatisfactory unilateral conditions are against the innate nature of the human beings and in direct contrast against the goal behind the creation of the human beings and the universe.

“It is no longer possible to increase wealth artificially by printing paper money, amounting up to tens of billion dollars without real baking for it, and to inject it into the veins of the world economy and to transfer severe budget deficits into the other countries’ economies by transferring their wealth to certain countries.

“The unleashed economy machine of capitalism that had been unjustly set has now reached the end of its way and is now out of order and this unilateral equation does not work any longer.”

 “Time is now over for some people to present their own definitions of democracy and freedom and to consider themselves as the meter sticks for the authenticity of such definitions, under such conditions that they themselves are breaching the same norms before anyone else. They play the roles of the judge, the prosecutor and the executioner all by themselves and meanwhile they act against the countries where true democracy is observed.

“Expansion of freedoms around the globe and the awareness of the world nations will not permit them to keep on pursuing the same wrong path any longer and that is the reason why most world nations, including the Americans, are longing for drastic, deep, and real changes and welcome the change motto.”

 “Who thinks the continuation of the inhumane policies in Palestine is still possible? Chasing away a nation from its own motherland for over 60 years and launching brutal attacks against them using the entire forbidden weapons, while blocking the path for legitimate defense for them, and more amazingly, doing so before the wide open eyes of the amazed world nations calling the aggressors ‘peace lovers’ and calling the oppressed people ‘terrorists’.

 “It is not possible to chant friendship and cooperation mottos with the world nations and meanwhile establish larger military barracks in various parts of the world, including in Latin America.

 “It is not acceptable that the United Nations and its Security Council that should be the representatives of the nations and the governments and decision makings at them should be based on most democratic, most egalitarian methods, would be under the reign of a few governments, serving merely their interests and obeying their orders.

“Basically, in a world where logic, culture, and public opinion count, continuation of such a status quo is impossible and emergence of a drastic evolution is an inescapable necessity.

“The second point;

“Changes and evolutions need to take place both at theoretical sphere and in practice, in structures and in methods, basically and at grass-root level.

“The hegemonic liberalist and capitalist mentalities that detach the human beings from their ethical systems and from the heaven, not only present them no salvation, but also lead them towards misery, including wars, poverty and various types of deprivation.

 “The political and economic structures emerged from the aftermaths of World War II that are among the bodies established aimed at strengthening the foundations of hegemony over the entire world have failed in harbingering sustainable justice and security.

“Those leaders whose hearts do not beat with love for the mankind and have sacrificed the idea of justice in their souls can never be the harbingers of peace and friendship for the mankind as gifts.

“By grace of God, just like Marxism that has become a memory in the history, the expansionist capitalism, too, will soon have to be found only in history books, because based on one of the divine traditions, referred to in Glorious Qur’an as a rule, ‘trickery would float over the water like bubbles, and the only thing that would remain (after a flood) is that which would benefit the people.’


 “The third point;

“The main secret and mystery behind the entire problems with which the global community is entangled is that a group of the world leaders have been distanced from ethical values and the teachings of divine prophets.

“Unfortunately in many major global relations instead of love and self-sacrifice aimed at saving the others, working for their well beings, and justice seeking, what is observed is selfishness, unquenchable thirst for more and more (wealth), and individuals’ (pursuing of) unlimited hedonist (objectives).

 “The fourth point;

“I believe there are a number of important tasks before each one of us, and the UN Secretary General can be the pioneer and do the necessary planning accordingly:

1. Reforming the apparatus of the UN and changing it into an up-dated, popular, neutral, free, just and effective organ acting in global relations; reforming the structure of the Security Council and annulling the discriminatory veto right; granting the Palestinians their denied rights fully and immediately after organizing a comprehensive, free referendum and paving the path for peaceful coexistence among the Muslim, the Christian and the Jewish citizens of Palestine, while ending interferences in the affairs of the peoples in Iraq, the Middle East, in Africa, in Latin America, in Asia and in Europe.

2. Reforming the global economic structure and establishing ethical, humane economic relations in the world, so that they would be at the service of the human beings based on true justice.

3. Reforming the international political relations; structuring the new relations based on sustainable peace and friendship, uprooting the devastating arms and political races, as well as the atomic, chemical and biological weapons, and paving the path for everyone to be benefited from peaceful advanced technologies at the service of the advancement of the entire mankind.

4. Reforming the cultural structures, respecting the indigenous cultures of nations, promoting ethical values, spirituality and the warm foundations of fortunate and sustainable families as the backbones of auspicious societies.

5. Collective endeavor for preservation of the human environment and abiding by the international rules and regulations aimed at safeguarding the non-renewable natural resources.

“The fifth point;

“The Iranian nation has left behind a very glorious, totally free election, and marked a new chapter of national blossoming and broad global interactions with their landslide votes, putting the heavy weigh of responsibility on my shoulders.

Long live justice and freedom!

And may Allah’s greetings and blessings be upon you all. [end]



When I goggled for the complete transcript of Gaddafi's speech, there was only one link that led to this disclaimer:

"Reported Attack Site! This web site at boy-meets-world.com has been reported as an attack site and has been blocked based on your security preferences. Attack sites try to install programs that steal private information, use your computer to attack others, or damage your system. Some attack sites intentionally distribute harmful software, but many are compromised without the knowledge or permission of their owners."

Not wanting to take a chance, I got out of there.

The Huffington Post did report: [2]

"In his first U.N. appearance, Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi issued a slashing attack on the Security Council and chastised the world body on Wednesday for failing to intervene or prevent some 65 wars since the U.N. was founded in 1945.

"It should not be called the Security Council, it should be called the "terror council," he said. The veto-wielding Security Council powers -- the United States, Britain, China, France and Russia -- treat smaller countries as "second class, despised" nations, Gadhafi said.

"U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and U.S. Ambassador Susan Rice departed before Gadhafi ascended the podium…The chamber was half-empty as Gadhafi gave his first speech and held a copy of the U.N. Charter in his hands…He railed against the "inequality" of U.N. member states, quoting from a copy of the U.N. Charter that calls for equality of nations, and then noting that five nations hold veto power on the Security Council and can block actions contrary to their interests: the United States, Russia, China, Britain and France.

The Huff Post also published my comments:

Perhaps Gadhafi's inflammatory rhetoric and showman ship come from a place of righteous rage. Israel has been targeted by at least 65 UN resolutions and the US beginning Sept. 10, 1972, began employing its veto to shield Israel from international criticism, censure and sanctions.

Washington used its veto 32 times to shield Israel from critical draft resolutions between 1972 and 1997. This constituted nearly half of the total of 69 U.S. vetoes cast since the founding of the U.N.

On July 26, 1973, a draft resolution affirmed the rights of the Palestinians and established provisions for Israeli withdrawal from occupied territories as embodied in previous General Assembly resolutions. But, Washington killed this international effort to end Israel’s occupation of Palestinian lands. THE REST: [3]


The UN was also the organization that carved up the Holy Land in 1948.

While still PM, Tony Blair admitted that most all the worlds problems with terrorism can be traced back to the conflict in Israel Palestine.

Rev. Martin Luther King united people of faith and those with none over the issue of basic and Equal Human Rights for All the citizens of this nation.

"The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy."-MLK

Here's HOPING Obama will measure up to his words, for as he promised in Prague, "Words must mean something."

Here's HOPING the UN will be a united body and demand Israel honor Equal Human Rights for All the people of that troubled piece of real estate.

And hope is not a wish, and "HOPE has two children. The first is ANGER at the way things are. The second is COURAGE to DO SOMETHING about it."-St. Augustine


 

The AP Reported "In a blunt challenge to his nation's critics, President Barack Obama on Wednesday exhorted world leaders who once accused the United States of acting alone to now join with him in solving global crises rather than wait for America to do it on its own."

Obama spoke about a "new era of engagement" and "Those who used to chastise America for acting alone in the world cannot now stand by and wait for America to solve the world's problems alone…Now is the time for all of us to take our share of responsibility for a global response to global challenges. The time has come for the world to move in a new direction…In an era where our destiny is shared, power is no longer a zero-sum game. No world order that elevates one nation or group of people over another will succeed…If we are honest with ourselves we need to admit that we are not living up to the shared responsibility to meet such challenges…Extremists sowing terror in pockets of the world…Protracted conflicts that grind on and on; genocide; mass atrocities; more nations with nuclear weapons; melting ice caps and ravaged populations; persistent poverty and pandemic disease. I say this not to sow fear, but to state a fact: The magnitude of our challenges has yet to be met by the measure of our actions."
[4]



President Obama had an audience of over 100 global counterparts in the U.N. chamber, as he
summoned world leaders to address global challenges and bring about a nuclear weapons-free world, to promote peace between Israelis and Palestinians.


Much of what President Obama said gave me hope that common sense has returned to the White House and some of those excerpts follow:

"The religious convictions that we hold in our hearts can forge new bonds among people, or tear us apart…real change is possible, and the hope that America will be a leader in bringing about such change…in the year 2009 - more than at any point in human history - the interests of nations and peoples are shared…We must embrace a new era of engagement based on mutual interests and mutual respect, and our work must begin now. We know the future will be forged by deeds and not simply words. Speeches alone will not solve our problems - it will take persistent action.


"We have also re-engaged the United Nations…This body was founded on the belief that the nations of the world could solve their problems together. Franklin Roosevelt, who died before he could see his vision for this institution become a reality, put it this way - and I quote: "The structure of world peace cannot be the work of one man, or one party, or one Nation.... It cannot be a peace of large nations - or of small nations. It must be a peace which rests on the cooperative effort of the whole world."


"…this body has often become a forum for sowing discord instead of forging common ground; a venue for playing politics and exploiting grievances rather than solving problems. After all, it is easy to walk up to this podium and to point fingers and stoke division. Nothing is easier than blaming others for our troubles, and absolving ourselves of responsibility for our choices and our actions. Anyone can do that.

"In an era when our destiny is shared…No one nation can or should try to dominate another nation. No world order that elevates one nation or group of people over another will succeed.


"The time has come to realize that the old habits and arguments are irrelevant to the challenges faced by our people…Together, we must build new coalitions that bridge old divides - coalitions of different faiths and creeds; of north and south, east and west; black, white, and brown…we can be a generation that chooses to see the shoreline beyond the rough waters ahead; that comes together to serve the common interests of human beings, and finally gives meaning to the promise embedded in the name given to this institution: the United Nations.


"That is the future America wants - a future of peace and prosperity that we can only reach if we recognize that all nations have rights, but all nations have responsibilities as well.


"First, we must stop the spread of nuclear weapons, and seek the goal of a world without them...the Nuclear Non Proliferation Treaty…says that all nations have the right to peaceful nuclear energy; that nations with nuclear weapons have the responsibility to move toward disarmament; and those without them have the responsibility to forsake them…All of Those nations that refuse to live up to their obligations must face consequences. This is not about singling out individual nations - it is about standing up for the rights of all nations that do live up to their responsibilities. Because a world in which IAEA inspections are avoided and the United Nation's demands are ignored will leave all people less safe, and all nations less secure."


Obama neglected to mention Israel's WMD, but signaled out the governments of North Korea and Iran who "choose to ignore international standards" regarding nuclear weapons, regional stability, being oblivious to the dangers of escalating nuclear arms races in both East Asia and the Middle East, but added "The world must stand together to demonstrate that international law is not an empty promise, and that Treaties will be enforced. We must insist that the future not belong to fear."


Obama next spoke about the pursuit of peace and seeking a "just and lasting peace between Israel, Palestine, and the Arab world."


Obama also addressed the Disease of Military Occupation as well as its many symptoms; the settlements, borders, refugees and Jerusalem and affirmed:

"The goal is clear: two states living side by side in peace and security - a Jewish State of Israel, with true security for all Israelis; and a viable, independent Palestinian state with contiguous territory that ends the occupation that began in 1967, and realizes the potential of the Palestinian people. As we pursue this goal, we will also pursue peace between Israel and Lebanon, Israel and Syria, and a broader peace between Israel and its many neighbors…I know this will be difficult. But all of us must decide whether we are serious about peace, or whether we only lend it lip-service. To break the old patterns - to break the cycle of insecurity and despair - all of us must say publicly what we would acknowledge in private.


"The United States does Israel no favors when we fail to couple an unwavering commitment to its security with an insistence that Israel respect the legitimate claims and rights of the Palestinians. And nations within this body do the Palestinians no favors when they choose vitriolic attacks over a constructive willingness to recognize Israel's legitimacy, and its right to exist in peace and security.

"We must remember that the greatest price of this conflict is not paid by us. It is paid by the Israeli girl in Sderot who closes her eyes in fear that a rocket will take her life in the night. It is paid by the Palestinian boy in Gaza who has no clean water and no country to call his own. These are God's children. And after all of the politics and all of the posturing, this is about the right of every human being to live with dignity and security. That is a lesson embedded in the three great faiths that call one small slice of Earth the Holy Land. And that is why - even though there will be setbacks, and false starts, and tough days - I will not waiver in my pursuit of peace."


"…democracy and human rights are essential to achieving each of the goals that I have discussed today. Because governments of the people and by the people are more likely to act in the broader interests of their own people, rather than the narrow interest of those in power.


"The test of our leadership will not be the degree to which we feed the fears and old hatreds of our people. True leadership will not be measured by the ability to muzzle dissent, or to intimidate and harass political opponents at home. The people of the world want change. They will not long tolerate those who are on the wrong side of history.


"This Assembly's Charter commits each of us, and I quote – 'to reaffirm faith in fundamental human rights, in the dignity and worth of the human person, in the equal rights of men and women.'


"Among those rights is the freedom to speak your mind…For just as no nation should be forced to accept the tyranny of another nation, no individual should be forced to accept the tyranny of their own government."



Obama's eloquence made me wonder if he thought about Vanunu who spoke up in 1986 about Israel's WMD Program, his freedom of speech trial in Israel and the fact that Israel continues to deny Vanunu the right to leave the state.



Obama concluded with a quote from Franklin Roosevelt who after years of war, summed up the lessons from the terrible suffering and enormous sacrifice that had taken place:

"We have learned to be citizens of the world, members of the human community."


I am still wondering about those empty chairs Ahmadinejad faced and if they are also a reflection of empty heads and stiff necks that have not learned that lesson.


I also wonder, hope, trust and pray that the time is now to reignite the vision and wisdom of one of the most forward thinkers of the American Revolution, Thomas Paine:


"Soon after I had published the pamphlet "Common Sense" [on Feb. 14, 1776] in America, I saw the exceeding probability that a revolution in the system of government would be followed by a revolution in the system of religion... The world is my country, all mankind are my brethren, and to do good is my religion."

Only time will tell and time is always tick-tick-ticking away.




1.   
http://www.irna.ir/NewsMedia/Photo/Smal_Pic/2009%5C9%5C24%5Cimg633893680452656250.jpg
2.  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/09/23/gaddafi-un-speech-libyan-_n_296175.html?page=5&show_comment_id=31520922#comment_31520922
3. 
 http://www.ifamericansknew.org/us_ints/p-neff-veto.html
4   http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090923/ap_on_go_pr_wh/us_obama




   
 
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