Gregory R. Copley
Washington, DC, January 18, 2013: The International Strategic Studies Association (ISSA) today sent a letter to UN Secretary-General ban Ki-moon insisting that unless a retraction of a formal UN “apology” was published, the UN would lose all support from the Association and from many others around the world. The issue stemmed from the issuance of a formal apology by the Secretary-General’s spokesman regarding the singing of a Serbian World War I patriotic march at a UN General Assembly session. The letter reads as follows:
It was with some outrage that we witnessed your spokesman, Martin Nesirky, on January 18, 2013, acquiescing to the demands of extremist protestors by issuing an apology to those “who may have found offensive” a song by a Serbian vocal group at the United Nations General Assembly earlier in the week. Almost any national expression at the United Nations could be said to be found offensive by at least some group, and yet no such regret — as was expressed over the Serbian tune — is issued on these occasions. To have issued the statement on this occasion was specifically a concession to extremist pressures.
The allegation that the tune, March to the Drina, was “not listed in the official program”, and tacitly accepting the specious allegation that the march was “sung by Serb forces during the 1995 massacre in the Bosnian city of Srebrenica in which more than 8,000 Muslim men and boys were slaughtered”, was subjective in its context, absolutely incorrect (indeed, it was a lie), and patently a bow to the extremist, racist elements who raised the protest against this tune, which celebrates a legitimate and heroic defense of a nation during World War I.
Your Excellency, you highlight on the UN Website, your words: “Terrorism festers where conflicts are endemic ... and where human rights, human dignity and human life are not protected and impunity prevails ...We have to drown out shrill appeals to intolerance and extremism with sound calls for compassion and moderation.”
Excellency, the apology issued on your behalf shows that your own office has fallen under the sway of the “shrill appeals to intolerance and extremism”. It is fair to say that unless this “apology” by Mr Nesirky is more sincerely rescinded, then you and the UN will lose the respect of this organization and, indeed, many people around the world.
Gregory R. Copley, AM, FRGCS, President.
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