UN: Threatening Hamas Means Threatening ‘International Peace’
Israel has made remarkable progress in its ground invasion of Gaza. Despite claims the war would be lengthy, it looks like the lion’s share of the operation may be finished before next month is over. Gaza City fell weeks ago. Israel is making short work of Khan Yunis, the largest city in southern Gaza. Compared to campaigns against the Taliban, the Islamic State and other terrorist groups, Israel’s operation against Hamas has been relatively fast, clean and effective.
You wouldn’t know this by listening to many prominent world leaders. Many are calling Israel the aggressor in the war and are trying to force Israel to back down. Whether they would put it in these words or not, they are trying to toss Hamas a lifeline.
On December 6, United Nations Secretary General António Guterres invoked Article 99 of the UN Charter, which reads:
The secretary general may bring to the attention of the Security Council any matter which, in his opinion, may threaten the maintenance of international peace and security.
Seems innocuous enough. The UN Security Council (unsc) has been busy (though not productive) since the war started on October 7. Guterres has pushed for a ceasefire between Israel and Hamas. Any action would require unanimous consent from the five permanent unsc members.
Article 99 has been invoked only four times before. The last time was in 1989, amid Lebanon’s civil war. Guterres’s declaration shows how serious he is about forcing Israel to stop fighting.
He wrote in his letter to the unsc:
We are facing a severe risk of collapse of the humanitarian system. The situation is fast deteriorating into a catastrophe with potentially irreversible implications for Palestinians as a whole and for peace and security in the region. Such an outcome must be avoided at all cost.
The unsc’s vote on December 8 failed—barely. Thirteen out of 15 members voted in support. The United Kingdom abstained. The United States’ veto was the only reason the resolution didn’t pass.
The UN General Assembly voted on December 12 about the same subject. Unlike the Security Council, the General Assembly’s resolutions are nonbinding. But the results are indicative of the global mood. The resolution calls for “an immediate humanitarian ceasefire,” as well as “the immediate and unconditional release of all hostages.”
Of the 193 member states, 153 voted to support the resolution, 23 abstained, and only 10 voted against. (A handful didn’t show up to the vote.)
Hamas is almost uprooted from Gaza. The reconstruction of Gaza—to bolster Israel’s security and give Gazans a better government—is around the corner. Hamas won’t be intimidated into releasing Israeli hostages by the General Assembly. The UN knows this. It also knows that the death tolls produced by Hamas, the only “official” casualty lists of Gazans killed so far, are unreliable. The main actor the UN is pressuring to back down is Israel. Giving Hamas a “ceasefire” is actually giving it a lifeline. If a ceasefire takes effect, the international community will do everything it can to make it permanent, just as they did with the last pause in hostilities.
There are worse crises Guterres could have used Article 99 on this year. Russia’s war in Ukraine, the civil war in Sudan, the coup in Niger, Azerbaijan conquering Nagorno-Karabakh from Armenia—the list goes on. Yet he saved it for a conflict that may be settled far sooner than any of these.
When the North Atlantic Treaty Organization declared war on the Taliban in 2001 in response to the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, people didn’t criticize it the same way they criticize Israel today. Neither did they criticize the U.S.’s international coalition to defeat the Islamic State. Hamas stands for the same causes as these other organizations: jihad against those who don’t think like them and the establishment of a totalitarian Islamist state.
Guterres and the United Nations General Assembly may accomplish nothing with their antics. But they did reveal their cards.
The UN has had an anti-Israel bias for years. Its latest actions demonstrate that, when push comes to shove, it will side with Hamas over Israel. It didn’t react the same way with the Taliban or the Islamic State. The difference this time around is Hamas’s target: Israel.
Since the Jews (along with the other tribes of Israel) settled the land of Canaan over 3,000 years ago, they have almost constantly been at war with their neighbors and outside powers. Since a.d. 70, the year the Romans burned down Jerusalem’s temple, the Jewish people, scattered throughout Europe, Asia and Africa, have suffered everything from forced conversions to mass expulsions to pogroms to the Holocaust. Now, over 75 years after they established their own state in the Holy Land again—after dealing with foreign invasions, diplomatic isolation, never-ending terrorism threats and the worst massacre of Jews since the Holocaust—they are finding the world against them once more.
It’s as if the world is surcharged with irrational Jew-hatred.
We wrote in our January 2024 Trumpet issue:
The Bible is clear that God the Father has a plan for mankind and that the Jews have a unique role in this plan. Most of the Old Testament is a history of the Jews and the other tribes of Israel.
The Bible also reveals that there is a devil who hates God and relentlessly seeks to destroy His plan (John 8:44; 2 Corinthians 4:4; Revelation 12). It is not fashionable to talk about him today, but one cannot believe the Bible and fail to recognize the devil’s existence. Ephesians 2:2 implies that he influences people’s moods, feelings and emotions. He is the author of jealousy, anger and hatred. …
The global rise of anti-Semitism is a sign of a very real spirit world. It’s a sign that evil spirits are real and they affect your life. Its rise goes hand in hand with the war on truth. It has the same origin—a devil that Jesus Christ Himself called the father of lies (John 8:44).
The Jewish people’s biblical legacy gives them a unique history. It also makes them a unique target. No matter the age, world conditions, or what ideology hatred claims, the Jewish race has always had an invisible target on its back.
The UN’s actions confirm this. Until the source of this irrational hatred is removed, it will grow worse and worse. But that does not mean there is no cause for hope.
The Bible reveals God won’t let the Jewish people be blotted out. As Jeremiah 30:11 states, “[T]hough I [God] make a full end of all the nations whither I have scattered thee, yet will I not make a full end of thee.”
The Jewish people have lessons to learn before God can deliver them completely. But He promises to never abandon them and to fulfill His purpose with them.
To learn more, read “Truth and Lies About Anti-Semitism.”