By Deborah Weiss
The United States is silent as the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) passes its most recent UN Resolution that unravels global consensus to support freedom of speech.
From 1999-2010, the OIC succeeded in passing its “defamations of religions”resolutions, which ostensibly would protect Islam from all criticism, including true statements of fact. Though the name of the resolutions indicated that it would pertain to all religions equally, in the OIC’s interpretation, it applied to Islam only.
Realizing the clash that this concept holds with that of free expression, the US State Department urged the OIC to produce an alternative resolution which would address the OIC’s concerns about “Islamophobia” and still protect free speech.
Accordingly, in March 2011, the OIC introduced the now infamousResolution 16/18 to combat intolerance based on religion or belief, purportedly proposed as a replacement for the defamation of religions resolution. It garnered wide-spread support and Western states touted it as a victory for free speech. They believed that its focus marked a landmark shift from suppression of speech critical of religions to combating discrimination and violence against individuals based on their religious beliefs.
Over time it became clear that the OIC retained its long term goal to protect Islam from “defamation” and indeed to criminalize all speech that shed a negative light on Islam or Muslims. Resolution 16/18 turned out to be a tactical move by the OIC to bring the West one step closer toward realizing its goal of achieving global blasphemy laws, by using language more palatable to the West, and open to interpretation.
Against this backdrop the US held the first conference to “implement” Resolution 16/18, the process now known as the “Istanbul Process.”
Unfortunately, America’s concern for the protection of free speech seems to have gotten lost as its focus moved closer to the OIC’s positions, and an emphasis was placed on protecting Muslims in the West from “Islamophobia.”
Some circles including free speech advocates, national security experts, and those concerned about the Persecuted Church, have beaten the drum against Resolution 16/18 and the continuation of the Istanbul Process. Their efforts have been to no avail as the Istanbul Process continues.
However, while awareness of the perils of Resolution 16/18 is on the increase, news on Resolution A/HRC/22/L.40 has gone virtually unreported. It retains the same title as Resolution 16/18, but has glaringly dangerous amendments.
To focus on just one, it asserts that “terrorism…cannot and should not be associated with any religion, nationality, civilization or ethnic group.” This is obviously problematic. The lumping together of these categories implies a false equation of immutable characteristics such as nationality and ethnicity with those that are subject to choice such as religion or belief….
Filed under: Foreign influence, Freedom of Speech, Islam, Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), US State Department | Tagged: Civilization jihad, freedom of speech, Islam, Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), U.S. State Department | 1 Comment »