We join the National Lawyers Guild in expressing support for the UN Special Rapporteur,Richard Falk, in his statement on the need for the U.S. to examine its foreign policy.
Dr. Falk, in an editorial in Foreign Policy Journal titled “A Commentary on the Marathon Murders,” appealed for the U.S. to be self-critical and examine the effects of “irresponsible and unlawful warfare [as the] centerpiece of American foreign policy.” He lists some of the more egregious actions of the U.S. wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, including Abu Ghraib, drone attacks, torture, and rendition and says: “The American global domination project is bound to generate all kinds of resistance in the post-colonial world. In some respects, the United States has been fortunate not to experience worse blowbacks…” Dr. Falk continues the essay with discussion of Barack Obama’s abandonment of the Palestinians and any involvement in bringing about a just peace. Obama’s recent visit to Israel, says Falk, was a “love letter to the Israeli public” and “obsequious diplomacy” rather than a serious attempt at achieving justice.
It is evident that American foreign policy is far from a force for global justice,and it is not seen as such by others around the world. The process of self-reflection will occur, says Dr. Falk, “either as a result of voluntary self-reflection or through the force of unpleasant events.”
Since the publication of his April 21, 2013 commentary, Dr. Falk has received thousands of comments claiming that he suggested that the U.S. is to blame for the Boston Marathon bombings, and even charging anti-Semitism. It is essential to remember that no motive for the bombings has yet been disclosed to the public and that no one, certainly not Richard Falk’s detractors, knows why the young bombers targeted civilians in Boston. Further, we reject the claim that criticizing either Israel or the relationship between Israel and the U.S. is anti-Jewish. Dr. Falk has always shown consistent respect for human rights for all people all over the world. It is also essential to understand that Dr. Falk said nothing to suggest U.S. blame. He was expressing what any humane and responsible individual should express: that the public in the U.S. must consider the impact of the foreign policy of its government when confronted with the mass violence it reigns on people across the globe, including the horrific ethnic cleansing of Palestinians by its close ally.