Prosor: Israel’s Relations at the U.N. Improving ‘Under the Radar’

January 23, 2014 6:53 pm 3 comments
Israel's Ambassador to the UN, Ron Prosor. Photo: Screenshot.

Israel's Ambassador to the UN, Ron Prosor. Photo: Screenshot.

Ron Prosor, Israel’s Ambassador to the United Nations, said relations at the international body are improving “under the radar,” despite the shibboleth of structural bias inherent in the international institution.

“At the UN, there’s 22 countries in the Arab League, 57 Islamic countries and 120 non-alignment countries… and only one Jewish state,” Ambassador Prosor told an audience at the Stephen Wise Free Synagogue, in New York City, on Wednesday.

Because of the difficulty in receiving a majority of 193 possible votes, Israel has only sponsored three resolutions at the UN.

“The first resolution we sponsored, the very first thing we did at the UN, was to establish January 27 as Holocaust Memorial Day,” he said.

Afterwards, the strategy was to find areas where Israeli expertise played to the interests of even hostile powers. The second resolution, to support new Agriculture Technologies for Development, was his example.

“This was in everyone’s interest, and we saw the Arab countries, which would benefit more than anyone, all vote against it, work against it, and this will continue until they’re more interested in the prospects for their own people than condemning Israel.”

The measure, as a Second Committee resolution, is voted on biennially, being adopted in 2007, with 118 countries voting in favor; in 2009, with 131 votes; in 2011, with 133 votes; and in 2013, with 138 countries voting in favor.

The third resolution was about Entrepreneurship for Development, and Israel’s delegation secured 141 out of 193 possible votes.

“The Ambassador from Tanzania, stood up, and said, ‘I, too, condemn the situation of Palestinians, but I like Israel very much!’”

“I was so happy, I nearly hugged him!” Prosor said.

He said many other ambassadors would tell him “this is nothing personal,” and then turn around to condemn Israel or vote the opposite way.

The Israeli delegation’s policy, especially for relations with ambassadors from the Arab world, was, initially, to ignore their slurs. But with the human rights crises in the Middle East and the spread of access to international news, the Israeli delegation felt emboldened to change tactics.

“Now, when everyone goes against us, we will respond,” he said.

When Israel was asked about UN programs that support the rights of women in society, Prosor spoke about Golda Meir, Israel’s female prime minister, about Tzipi Livni, the female Justice Minister for the present Israeli government, and said he was happy to point to his colleagues from the Arab world, and ask where they stood “on women, on gays?”

“Now they see there’s a response from us, and they don’t want to be singled out, so they say nothing,” he said.

While tactics have changed, Prosor said the biggest impact on the Israeli delegation in the future will be from the changing dynamic in the Middle East, with Iran’s emergence leading delegations from Saudi Arabia and Kuwait to think higher of their Israeli colleagues for standing up against the Iranian nuclear threat.

In the corridors of power at the UN, while other diplomats, always off the record, may be glad to see Israel standing taller at the institution “under the radar,” one accredited representative of an NGO at the UN said, for publication, that it was great news.

“It is intriguing, interesting and important that Israeli’s ambassador to the UN would make such an optimistic statement,” said Dr. Judy Kuriansky, representative to the United Nations for the International Association of Applied Psychology and the World Council for Psychotherapy. “In the context of the events that often happen here, it’s a credit to what the institution of the United Nations is meant to stand for.”

3 Comments

  • In the eye of the storm! What courage Ron Prosor has! Is there any other nation with such resolute goodwill on the face of the earth? I think not.

  • Should Iran get to testing an A bomb of its very own, it doesn’t take a prophet to see strange new alignments in the Middle East. Hopefully, the USA will have gone through a change in administrations that results in a far deeper understanding of the long term threat of radical Islam.

    Israel at the UN has long been a small voice deliberately unheard by those who still think its destruction should occur.
    Will this change? Hopefully those who can approach reality with pragmatism will begin opening dialogues with Israel.

    They can only benefit!

Leave a Reply

Please note: comments may be published in the Algemeiner print edition.


Current day month ye@r *

More...

  • Arts and Culture Blogs 10 New Hollywood Movies That Aim to Show Support for Israel (SATIRE)

    10 New Hollywood Movies That Aim to Show Support for Israel (SATIRE)

    Ten major film studios are currently in production on projects that promote a decidedly pro-Israeli narrative. In famously liberal Hollywood, such a development has left mouths agape and set tongues a wagging. Since the Jewish State began defending itself from the thousands of rockets that Hamas has hurled at it – as well as ongoing terror attacks and murders, the overwhelming number of Tinseltown’s producers, directors, actors, and studio moguls have remained indifferent to the plight of millions of Israeli [...]

    Read more →
  • Featured Israel Sports So Close: Israeli Judoka Loses Crown in World Cup Final, Finishes With Silver (VIDEO)

    So Close: Israeli Judoka Loses Crown in World Cup Final, Finishes With Silver (VIDEO)

    Israeli Judoka Yarden Gerbi (63kg), 25, of Netanya, on Thursday lost the final round at the Judo World Cup, and her world title to Clarisse Agbegnenou of France, at a match held in Russia. “I have mixed feelings,” Gerbi told Israeli Army radio. But, “I shouldn’t assume that I’d win the world Judo championship twice in a row,” she admitted. Gerbi won gold in Rio De Janeiro last year. “When I made my decision, I knew it was going to [...]

    Read more →
  • Book Reviews Jewish Identity Surviving the Holocaust by Hiding Their Faith (REVIEW)

    Surviving the Holocaust by Hiding Their Faith (REVIEW)

    “Jews Out!” was just the name of a child’s game that three little girls played in World War II Europe. But all is not as it seems because the three girls were Jewish, but hiding their true identities. In award-winning author R. D. Rosen’s riveting non-fiction work, Such Good Girls, “Jews Out!” wasn’t a game; it was a struggle for survival. The girls, Sophie, Flora, and Carla, grew up at a time and a place that did not allow them [...]

    Read more →
  • Music Personalities Twenty Years On, the Real and Radical Legacy of Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach

    Twenty Years On, the Real and Radical Legacy of Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach

    JNS.org – “He was part hippie, part yippie, part beatnik, and part New Age,” wrote Elli Wohlgelernter in a Jerusalem Post eulogy in 1994, following the Oct. 20 passing of Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach. Twenty years later, more robust accounts of Carlebach’s life have come to the surface. Earlier this year, Natan Ophir published the book Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach: Life, Mission & Legacy. This past summer, Rabbi Shlomo Katz’s The Soul of Jerusalem hit the shelves. But even the authors will admit [...]

    Read more →
  • Blogs Music Beatlemania Invades the Gaza Strip (SATIRE)

    Beatlemania Invades the Gaza Strip (SATIRE)

    As Hamas loses its grip on power in the Gaza Strip as a result of war, poverty and disillusionment, the Islamist terrorist group has developed an ingenious way to raise the moral of the 1.7 million Palestinian Arabs it was elected to serve. While currently focused on delivering a rocket into every Israeli home, Hamas has not left its own people behind. To gently wipe away the tears of children strategically placed inside kindergartens as human shields, the Hamas Interior Ministry has [...]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Spirituality/Tradition Removing Jesus’ Jewish Identity From Artwork

    Removing Jesus’ Jewish Identity From Artwork

    In a strong statement that challenges the historic divide between Christianity and Judaism, Pope Francis recently proclaimed, “Inside every Christian is a Jew.” But if you look at Renaissance artworks that depict Jesus, you will not find any evidence of a Jew inside the Christianized Jesus — even though the Gospels in the New Testament tell us that Jesus was Jewish to the core. Getting that point across to the public is a daunting task, as I learned in interviews I [...]

    Read more →
  • Music Personalities Recycling His Roots

    Recycling His Roots

    JNS.org – Having started his career playing on his family’s pots and pans, Jewish musician Billy Jonas has maintained this homemade performance ethic while spreading his messages of simple living and environmentalism to a shared home throughout the world. After beginning in the kitchen, Jonas soon moved to the music room, where he picked up the piano, guitar, and trombone. These days, the multi-talented multi-instrumentalist plays on with pretty much anything he can find, including cans, bottles buckets, and other recycled-object [...]

    Read more →
  • Book Reviews Personalities Jewish Renewal Movement Founder’s Insights Form a New Guide for Senior Living

    Jewish Renewal Movement Founder’s Insights Form a New Guide for Senior Living

    JNS.org – Sara Davidson’s The December Project is a new book that should be read by all senior citizens, and by those who hope to live a long life, for it raises a question that most of us have not been taught how to answer: What should we do in that final stage of our lives? Many of us continue working past the traditional retirement age of 65, not because we need the money and not because we find the [...]

    Read more →



Sign up now to receive our regular news briefs.