Posted by on November 04, 2011 in Blog

We've already written on this subject twice this week; to highlight the ways that our withdrawal from UNESCO needlessly impoverishes millions, and to note the cost of the withdrawal on our economy and American businesses. We're writingabout it again today because the problem goes much deeper. As it stands, the legislation that prevents us from funding U.N. agencies that recognize Palestine will soon to be used to isolate us from the global community and damage even further our already poor international standing.

Congress forced us out of UNESCO – and by association, out of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), the U.N. Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), and the U.N. Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO). But it doesn’t stop there. The Palestinian Authority is already making inroads to other U.N. agencies, and the unwillingness of Congress to come to terms with that reality may have an even deeper impact on our economy, stability, and international reputation.

Next on the list for the recognition of Palestine will likely be the World Health Organiztion (WHO), which protects millions from infectious diseases and ensures that the international community can effectively manage public health risks. U.S. financing is a “vital funding need for WHO.”

A number of other agencies could come next: the International Criminal Court and the World Trade Organization will likely follow WHO membership. The PA has also expressed an interest in joining the World Bank, the International Telecommunication Union, the International Labor Organization and the International Atomic Energy Agency.

Will we seriously withdraw from–and cripple–every single international body just to send a misguided message of support to Israel’s hardline government?

Thank you to the hundreds of you who have already written your congressional representatives to let them know that the current course of action is foolish, dangerous, and counterproductive. For those of you who have yet to do so, or are willing to do so again, please take three minutes out of your day to send an email to your representatives and make your voices heard.


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