The UN Arms Trade Treaty conference is so shrouded in secrecy that the UN conference website and summary failed to name the 15 members elected, including Iran. This conference is currently hammering out in secret the details of a treaty on the regulation of trade in small arms that some observers believe will infringe on the Second Amendment rights of American citizens in legal possession of firearms if the Obama administration climbs on board, as it is expected to do.
The United Nations has a long history of feigning displeasure with Iran’s conduct while rewarding Iran at the same time. For example, a United Nations body, the World Intellectual Property Organization, has reportedly violated UN sanctions itself against both Iran and North Korea by providing computer equipment to the two rogue nations.
“Providing these thugs with sensitive technology has the potential to enable their dangerous agendas,” Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.), chairwoman of the House Foreign Relations Committee which is investigating the UN’s flouting of its own sanctions, said in a statement. “This serious offense cannot go overlooked or unpunished.”
This is not an isolated example. The UN bureaucracy system-wide has been operating at cross-purposes with UN sanctions for years to help Iran, through an inter-agency UN team coordinated by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). It has aided Iran to obtain potential dual-use technology enabling, in the words of a document issued by the United Nations Country Team in Iran, the “transfer of knowledge in science and technology through technology-based services,” programs to “improve technological capacity in industries,” and “joint international research projects.” This included “advance processing technologies and innovative system design.”
The United Nations Development Programme has worked with the Iranian regime to strengthen its export, import and production capacities. The UNDP’s extensive activities on the Iranian regime’s behalf, and the hard currency pumped into Iran’s economy by the UNDP and its affiliated UN agencies, have operated at cross-purposes with the ongoing efforts by the UN Security Council and Western democracies to isolate Iran from the international financial community.
Iran’s term on the executive board of the UNDP just expired at the end of 2011. But the gravy train continues in 2012, as the executive board – even without Iran – approved the final country program for Iran.
The United Nations is helpless in trying to quell the violence in Syria and to thwart Iran’s nuclear ambitions. That’s a given, particularly in light of Russia’s and China’s recalcitrance. However, does the UN really have to go out of its way to reward Iran in spite of its numerous bad acts? Apparently so.
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