President Obama is renewing his push for the U.S. to cede its oceans to United Nations-based international law.
The effort for the U.S. to ratify the Law of the Sea Convention has been a long-term goal for White House counselor John Podesta, founder of the highly influential George Soros-funded think tank, the Center for American Progress.
Podesta is a member of a group calling itself Joint Ocean Commission Initiative, which seeks to have the U.S. ratify laws and regulations governing the seas.
The Joint Ocean Commission Initiative is a key partner of Citizens for Global Solutions, or CGS, which, according to its literature, envisions a “future in which nations work together to abolish war, protect our rights and freedoms and solve the problems facing humanity that no nation can solve alone.”
CGS in turn is a member organization and supporter of the World Federalist Movement, which openly seeks a one-world government. The World Federalist Movement considers the CGS to be its U.S. branch.
Obama on Wednesday criticized the Senate for its reluctance to ratify the Law of the Sea Convention, stating, “We cannot exempt ourselves from the rules that apply to everyone.”
“It’s a lot harder to call on China to resolve its maritime disputes under the Law of the Sea Convention when the United States Senate has refused to ratify it – despite the repeated insistence of our top military leaders that the treaty advances our national security,” Obama told new graduates at the U.S. Military Academy in West Point.
In 2012, Obama’s Interagency Ocean Policy Taskforce, created in 2010 by executive order, recommended the U.S. join the U.N.’s Law of the Sea Convention.
The convention defines the rights and responsibilities of nations in their use of the world’s oceans, establishing guidelines for businesses, the environment and the management of marine natural resources.
Republican lawmakers mounted fierce opposition to the U.S. joining the U.N. law.
Earlier this week, the State Department held an “Our Ocean” conference that attracted star power when Leonardo DiCaprio appeared and pledged $7 million for ocean conservation.
“It’s the Wild West on the high seas,” DiCaprio stated. “These last remaining underwater bio gems are being destroyed because there isn’t proper enforcement or sufficient cooperation among governments to protect them.”
Secretary of State John Kerry spoke at the oceans conference, where he called for 10 percent of U.S. oceans to be considered marine-protected areas and suggested this be coordinated with the U.N.
He continued: “And we need to push harder, all of us, for U.N. agreements to fight carbon pollution in the first place because the science proves that’s the only way we’ll have a chance of reducing the impact of climate change, which is one of the greatest threats facing not just our ocean but our entire planet.”
Kerry previously served as chairman of the Senate Subcommittee on the Oceans. He explained at this week’s ocean event the ocean conference had been a priority of his for years.
“[L]iterally from the time I was growing up as a child in Massachusetts, when I first dipped my toes into the mud off Woods Hole Oceanographic, in that area of Buzzards Bay and the Cape, and was introduced to clamming and to fishing and all of those great joys of the ocean, I have had this enormous love and respect for what the ocean means to us.”
In a video address to the World Ocean Summit 2014 held this past February, Kerry called for a “global understanding” on how to govern U.S. oceans.
Kerry stated: “I absolutely endorse the notion, as does President Obama, that we need some kind of global understanding about how we will enforce – and what – how we will enforce regulations and what rules we will put in place in order to preserve our fisheries and manage our coastlines and do the things necessary to reduce the pollution and preserve these ecosystems. It is going to take some kind of global understanding.”
‘One world government’
When he joined the Joint Ocean Commission Initiative, meanwhile, Podesta stated, “I am delighted to be joining the Global Ocean Commission, which I see as one of the most dynamic initiatives developing commonsense ways to manage fully 45 percent of the globe that remains common property, outside any national jurisdiction.”
The Joint Ocean Commission Initiative bills itself as a bipartisan, collaborative group that aims to “accelerate the pace of change that results in meaningful ocean policy reform.”
Among its main recommendations is that the U.S. should put its oceans up for regulation to the U.N. Convention on the Law of the Sea.
Other recommendations of Podesta’s Joint Ocean Commission Initiative include:
- The administration and Congress should establish a national ocean policy. The administration and Congress should support regional, ecosystem-based approaches to the management of ocean, coastal and Great Lakes.
- Congress should strengthen and reauthorize the Coastal Zone Management Act.
- Congress should strengthen the Clean Water Act.
The World Federalist Movement brings together organizations and individuals that support the establishment of a global federal system of strengthened and democratized global institutions with plenary constitutional power accountable to the citizens of the world and a division of international authority among separate global agencies.
The movement’s headquarters are located near the U.N. building in New York City. A second office is near the International Criminal Court in The Hague, Netherlands.
The locations are significant, since the movement heavily promotes the U.N. and is the coordinator of various international projects, such as the Coalition for the International Criminal Court and the Responsibility to Protect military doctrine. The doctrine formed the basis of Obama’s justification to launch NATO airstrikes in Libya.
In 2008, Podesta served as co-director of Obama’s transition into the White House.
A Time magazine article profiled the influence of Podesta’s Center for American Progress in the formation of the Obama administration, stating that “not since the Heritage Foundation helped guide Ronald Reagan’s transition in 1981 has a single outside group held so much sway.”
The center is funded by Soros. Its board includes Van Jones, Obama’s former “green jobs” czar, who resigned in September 2009 after it was exposed he founded a communist revolutionary organization.
With additional research by Brenda J. Elliott.