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The United Nations created a new body to promote the rights of women worldwide. And all the usual suspects, namely, Iran, rushed to sign up to the executive board.

This is nothing new for the UN, which has regularly seen topsy-turvy things like Libya being elected to the UN Human Rights Council. The moral authority of the UN has basically been at zero, since the one nation, one vote structure means that small states with human rights abuses get to dominate the conversation.

But this time, Iran – a country where women are executed for adultery – presuming to speak up for women’s rights was just a step too far for nations like Canada and the USA, who successfully blocked its bid for a seat on the board:

Led by the U.S., several countries helped gather opposition to Iran’s campaign. They were joined by human-rights groups, who pointed to the recent sentence of death by stoning for Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani, an Iranian woman convicted of adultery.

Before anyone gets too excited, though, it should be noted that this is just one blip in the UN’s steady march to redefine human rights in a topsy-turvy, Orwellian fashion:

You might think the regime’s habit of murdering women for imaginary crimes would earn it universal condemnation – especially from places such as the United Nations. You would be wrong. In April, Iran was given a seat on the UN Commission on the Status of Women, whose goal is “gender equality and the advancement of women.” No one explained how stoning women to death advances gender equality. This is a moral inversion so twisted that it defies satire. If you still harbour any illusion that the UN is truly interested in the rights of women, please abandon it now.

Iran’s ludicrous appointment was a consolation prize for its failure, despite fierce lobbying, to gain a seat on the UN Human Rights Council. That would not have been as bizarre as it sounds, given that its members include the rights-conscious nation of Saudi Arabia. The Human Rights Council is dominated by a bloc of Islamic and African states that refuse to condemn Iran for anything. Instead, the council spends most of its time denouncing Israel and the United States. “It’s tragic,” says Ms. Namazie, who fled Iran in 1980. “It’s like asking apartheid South Africa to sit on the commission for racial equality.”

The UN Human Rights Council has long been a joke. UN Women, the new agency, promises to be much of the same. Same shit, different day.


The Independent reports how the Pink Floyd classic has gotten a new life as a theme song of the Iranian protest movement:

(Via Lisa Goldman).


Duh alert


The IAEA is worried that Iran is trying to develop nuclear weapons: The U.N. nuclear agency on Thursday expressed concern for the first time that Iran may currently be working on ways to turn enriched uranium into a nuclear warhead, instead of having stopped several years ago. Its report appears to contradict an assessment by […]

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Silencing the voices of dissent


An Iranian nuclear physics professor who backed the opposition has been assassinated: A nuclear physics professor who publicly backed Iranian opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi in the disputed June presidential election was killed Tuesday when a remote-controlled bomb rigged to a motorcycle blew up outside his home. State media identified the victim as Masoud Ali Mohammadi, 50, a […]

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Meanwhile in Iran


The death of opposition cleric Grand Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri has sparked more protests – which never really died down, despite strong-arm efforts from Ahmedinijad to stamp out dissent: Montazeri’s death pushed Iranian authorities into a difficult spot. They were obliged to pay respects to one of the patriarchs of the 1979 Islamic Revolution and the one-time heir […]

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UN censures Iran: All bark, no bite


The utterly useless, impotent United Nations sent its version of a “we’re warning you, or else…” message to Iran regarding its nuclear program: The U.N. nuclear watchdog’s board censured Iran on Friday, with 25 nations backing a resolution demanding that Tehran immediately freeze construction of its newly revealed nuclear facility and heed Security Council resolutions […]

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What to do about Iran?


Iran continues to play nuclear weapons chicken with a world community that’s basically out of options. But, according to Barack Obama, there’s a silver lining to the world’s powerlessness to stop Iran from going nuclear: At least the world is united in its powerlessness: Obama added: “Our expectation is that over the next several weeks, […]

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Hillary’s priorities


So apparently, Hillary Clinton is not okay with a nuclear North Korea… but she doesn’t seem to have a problem with a nuclear Iran. Better hope that umbrella is big enough to protect you from the ensuing shitstorm, Hillary.

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Always looking for the silver lining


Shimon Peres’s attempt to put a positive spin on the global economic crisis: “The leaders of Iran cannot give their children uranium for breakfast,” Peres said, adding that the world financial crisis would hamper Iran’s progress toward nuclear capability. “As the price of oil declines, Iran doesn’t have as much money to invest in uranium, […]

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From the priceless headlines file


This one’s a real doozy: EU worried about freedom of religion in Iran. Every joke I could make here would be just too easy, so I’ll let it speak for itself.

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