Of Course: UN Human Rights Council Pays Tribute to Hugo Chavez

Posted: Mar 07, 2013 8:31 AM

So, about that $85 billion in sequester money... why don't we just start pulling some of our funding from the United Nations? As the world knows by now, Venezuelan dictator Hugo Chavez finally died this week after a long battle with cancer and a recent re-election riddled with fraud. Despite terrible living conditions in the country and Chavez' confiscation of private property on demand, the UN Human Rights Council paid tribute to him yesterday. More from CNSNews:

The U.N. Human Rights Council was criticized Wednesday for holding a minute of silence to honor Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, a decision that again illustrated the tension between the body’s actions and its professed commitment to upholding human rights around the world.

“He worked tirelessly not only for his people, but for the betterment of the nations of Latin America and the Caribbean,” said Cuba’s Anayansi Rodriguez. “Under his leadership, Venezuela reached the peak of its history."

Chavez, who died Tuesday, was frequently criticized for human rights violations at home, while in the international arena he consistently supported some of the world’s most controversial regimes, including Iran, Syria and Libya under the late Muammar Gaddafi.

Even the far Left think tank Think Progress argued this week that Chavez shouldn't be celebrated after Democratic Rep. Jose Serrano praised the dictator.

Chavez’ policies harmed Venezuela’s poorest in other ways: the value of the Venezuelan currency dropped while prices soared, making it harder for people to buy basic necessities, and crime skyrocketed.

Moreover, Chavez hurt the vulnerable in Venezuela in other ways. Chavez’s state-run media hounded Venezuela’s small, beleaguered Jewish population — he himself once said “Don’t let yourselves be poisoned by those wandering Jews.” A study released by the Kantor Center at Tel Aviv University found that Chavez’s rule “witnessed a rise in antisemitic manifestations, including vandalism, media attacks, caricatures, and physical attacks on Venezuelan Jewish institutions.” Indeed, roughly half of Venezuelan Jews fled the country because of “the social and economic chaos that the president has unleashed and from the uncomfortable feeling that they were being specifically targeted by the regime.”

Chavez also attacked Venezuela’s democratic political system. Human Rights Watch reported in 2012 that “the accumulation of power in the executive and the erosion of human rights protections have allowed the Chávez government to intimidate, censor, and prosecute critics and perceived opponents in a wide range of cases involving the judiciary, the media, and civil society.” Contra Serrano’s implication that Chavez’s elections were generally certified as “free and fair by international monitors,” Chavez had not invited international election monitors to observe Venezuelan elections since 2006 (though a delegation from the Carter Center did conduct a limited audit of the 2012 election).

Again, if you haven't seen U.N. Me, go watch it.