It’s been five days since Israel seized a cargo ship reportedly carrying enough weapons and munitions for the Iranian-backed Hezbollah terrorist group to fight Israel for at least one month. And for the past five days, the United Nations has failed to take any action even though Iran was caught red-handed arming a terrorist group in full violation of binding U.N. resolutions.
The cargo ship originated in Iran and was headed for Syria. The Israeli army announced it found documentation showing Iran was the point of origin for some containers on the ship, with Syria as the intended destination.
Iran regularly attempts to send weapons to Syria, and from there the shipments are smuggled to Hezbollah bases in Lebanon, Israeli security officials said.
Israel last week put on full display its find of hundreds of tons of Iranian-supplied arms, including rockets – the largest-ever weapons cache captured by Israeli forces. Israel Radio reported that advanced anti-aircraft platforms were also on board, with Rani Ben-Yehuda, the deputy commander of Israel’s navy, confirming the presence of “very advanced weaponry.”
The Iranian arms shipment set sail in violation of U.N. Resolution 1701, a binding resolution which ended the Second Lebanon War of 2006 and prohibits the delivery of weapons to any entity in Lebanon but the Lebanese government. The shipment also breaks multiple international laws against funding and supporting terrorist organizations.
Israel’s U.N. ambassador last week complained to the international body about Iran’s blatant disregard for international law, but no response has been forthcoming from U.N. officials.
Coincidentally, on the very day that Israel captured the cargo vessel, the U.N. was debating a so-called investigation authored by South African Judge Richard Goldstone, which claims both Hamas and Israel were guilty of war crimes during the Jewish state’s defensive war in Gaza this past December and January.
The report, affirmed by the U.N. Human Rights Council, claimed Israel deliberately targeted civilians during the Gaza conflict, which started after Hamas refused to extend a cease fire, instead launching a rocket offensive against Israeli population centers.
That U.N. report has been slammed here as anti-Israel, with some officials calling it a blood libel. The report equates Israel, which worked to minimize civilian casualties in Gaza, to Hamas, a terrorist organization that utilized civilians as human shields and fired rockets at Jewish cities from Palestinian hospitals and apartment buildings.
During the Gaza war, Israel sent hundreds of thousands of text messages and placed tens of thousands of calls warning local Palestinians of incoming attacks against Hamas’ military infrastructure in Gaza.
Israeli officials warned Goldstone’s standards can be used against U.S. and British anti-terror operations in Afghanistan and Iraq.
WND previously reported on charges that Goldstone’s report seemed to rely on discredited witnesses and Palestinian misinformation.
Perhaps even more disturbing is that two days before Israel’s capture of the cargo ship, U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon released a report to the U.N. Security Council that explained the international body lacked the ability to independently verify whether weapons were being smuggled to Hezbollah.
In the report, Ban wrote that the Lebanese government had not informed the U.N. of a single incident of weapons smuggling to its territory, whether by land, sea or air.
Ban, however, failed to acknowledge that Hezbollah had until recently held veto power over the Lebanese government. Just yesterday, it was announced Hezbollah would likely reenter the new Lebanese government led by prime-minister-designate Saad Hariri.
Since the Second Lebanon War, Israel has been carrying out regular flights over Lebanon that the defense establishment here deems necessary for intelligence purposes. The flights provide Israel with important data on Hezbollah’s continued armament and strategic information, such as the locations of missile storage bunkers and the rebuilding of Hezbollah bases in southern Lebanon. Israel has multiple times passed this kind of information, including aerial photographs, to the U.N., and yet the international body has largely failed to take action.
Last week, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced the “sole objective” of the seized Iranian weapons shipment “was to attack and kill as many civilians – women, children and the elderly – as possible. This is a war crime.”
“The U.N. General Assembly should investigate, discuss and condemn [the Iranian shipment],” said Netanyahu. “This is a war crime that should prompt the U.N. Security Council to convene in special session, especially since it was in gross violation of U.N. Security Council resolutions.”
Netanyahu added: “This is what the international community should concentrate on at all times – but especially today. But instead, they have chosen to assemble and condemn the IDF and the State of Israel, and to try and undermine our legitimate right to defend ourselves.”