Let’s see. He insists that Israelis are Nazis and he works for the Cubans, Saudia, and Chinese at the UN Human Rights Commission. In retrospect, we should have suspected that Richard Falk had paranoid-conspiracy issues. Eli Lake at the New York Sun reports on the latest idiocy to come from the UN-HRC’s investigator:
A new U.N. Human Rights Council official assigned to monitor Israel is calling for an official commission to study the role neoconservatives may have played in the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.
On March 26, Richard Falk, Milbank professor of international law emeritus at Princeton University, was named by unanimous vote to a newly created position to report on human rights in the conflict between Israel and the Palestinian Arabs. While Mr. Falk’s specialty is human rights and international law, since the attacks in 2001, he has devoted some of his time to challenging what he calls the “9-11 official version.”
On March 24 in an interview with a radio host and former University of Wisconsin instructor, Kevin Barrett, Mr. Falk said, “It is possibly true that especially the neoconservatives thought there was a situation in the country and in the world where something had to happen to wake up the American people. Whether they are innocent about the contention that they made that something happen or not, I don’t think we can answer definitively at this point. All we can say is there is a lot of grounds for suspicion, there should be an official investigation of the sort the 9/11 commission did not engage in and that the failure to do these things is cheating the American people and in some sense the people of the world of a greater confidence in what really happened than they presently possess.”
Mr. Barrett, who is the co-founder of the Muslim-Jewish-Christian Alliance for 9/11 Truth, said in an interview yesterday of Mr. Falk, “I would put him on a list of scholars who are sympathetic to the 9/11 truth movement.”
It’s not an isolated event. Falk wrote a foreword for a Truther book written by David Ray Griffin. It stated that Griffin had put together a coherent account of “official complicity” in the terrorist attack of 9/11. The conspiracy-theory-laden tome suggests that Israel was at the center of this plot, at least passively.
It’s not Falk’s first trip down Lunatic Lane, either. Falk was part of Ramsey Clark’s expedition to meet with Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini in early 1979 to celebrate the end of the Shah’s rule. Falk wrote in February of that year in the New York Times that Khomeini was a moderate, with progressive policies, happy to allow political dissent (emphases mine):
The news media have defamed him in many ways, associating him with efforts to turn the clock back 1,300 years, with virulent anti-Semitism, and with a new political disorder, “theocratic fascism”, about to be set loose on the world. …
He has also indicated that the non-religious left will be free to express its views in an Islamic republic and to participate in political life, provided only that it does not “commit treason against the country” by establishing foreign connections — a lightly-veiled reference to anxiety about Soviet interference. …
To suppose that Ayatollah Khomeini is dissembling seems almost beyond belief. …
Iran may yet provide us with a desperately-needed model of humane governance for a third-world country.
A month later, even Anthony Lewis couldn’t buy Falk’s gibberish. Eight months before Khomeini would sack our embassy and start a 444-day hostage crisis with the US, Lewis wrote in response to Falk at the New York Times (March 12, 1979):
[T]he description of Ayatollah Khomeini and the shadowy figures around him as “moderate” and “progressive” in the Western sense of these words has turned out to be astoundingly silly.
Since taking power, the Ayatollah has set out, without equivocation or disguise, to turn the clock back and give Iran a theocratic regime.
John Bolton, former ambassador to the UN, told Lake that the US opposed the formation of the present UN-HRC precisely because it would produce appointments like that of Falk. Falk has a long history of enabling monsters and terrorists while applying very different standards to the West. He found Khomeini to be completely credible, but somehow thinks the Bush administration and the “neocons” capable of sinister lies and conspiracies.
In short, Falk is a nut. The fact that the UN-HRC would hire this apologist for the position of investigator provides another stinging indictment of the United Nations. The US should protest this appointment with all its strength as an insult to our nation and demand his dismissal forthwith.