[At-Large] [APAC-Discuss] [ALAC-Internal] US loses its vote in UNESCO

Salanieta T. Tamanikaiwaimaro salanieta.tamanikaiwaimaro at gmail.com
Sat Nov 9 13:51:00 UTC 2013

P.S Apologies, was typing my thoughts at 2:50am and just realised that some
sentences read funny....

On Sun, Nov 10, 2013 at 2:48 AM, Salanieta T. Tamanikaiwaimaro <
salanieta.tamanikaiwaimaro at gmail.com> wrote:

> Dear Jean-Jacques,
> I am glad to be of service. Personally I feel that the Surveillance Debate
> that happened in the European Parliament over the study is different. The
> Hearing was mainly to look at whether the countries mentioned had violated
> EU law and relevant instruments and to see whether the study and its
> recommendations were of any value.
> The context of the Press Release by the US State Department shows that US
> cannot vote in the UNESCO. Their not being able to vote unfortunately was
> due to statutory restrictions which they are attempting to fix. At this
> critical juncture in Internet Governance, UNESCO plays a critical role in
> Internet Governance amongst other things. The loss of the vote is
> unfortunate and it would mean that when it comes to voting on critical
> matters, the US will have to rely on its allies. In this instance with the
> recent revelations on surveillance we are watching a change from the usual
> BRIC v US on the issue of surveillance to other traditional alliances such
> as France, Germany, Belgium, Netherlands etc who are not happy with the
> "surveillance". Last time I checked 87 countries signed the Seoul Framework
> on Cyber Security.
> When Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel who made open calls for Europe to
> re-examine its cooperation with US Intelligence signals a breach of trust.
> The fact that Angela Merkel has been touted the de facto leader of the
> European Union with Germany shouldering and providing the much needed
> stability to ease the stress on financially economies in Europe coupled
> with her being former President of the European Council and Chair of G8
> places her in a very key position of power and influence in this time. Dev
> shared a piece of news on skype that Europe was considering building a
> pan-European equivalent of the NSA. (war begets war -what a messed up
> world!)
> This of course does not discount the G90 who met in Fiji recently. The
> chair is from Fiji, I think unless it has lapsed. Given the current deals
> across the tables between the EU and G90 who knows what the tradeoffs would
> be for certain decisions. We are in significant times and I doubt much will
> happen as there are too many other pressing matters that countries have to
> prioritise such as Super Typhoon which devastated Philippinnes and Palau.
> Not to mention the global food, water, energy crisis that is causing the
> price of bread to rise and shortage in Eastern Europe, Middle East.
> But I still think that it is a significant piece of news that affects the
> current chess pieces on the board.
> Kind Regards,
> Sala
> On Sun, Nov 10, 2013 at 2:01 AM, Jean-Jacques Subrenat <jjs at dyalog.net>wrote:
>> Dear Salanieta,
>> thank you for forwarding this.
>> Well, every country has its own priorities. From the point of view of the
>> surveillance agencies in the country you mentioned, and in the UK, making
>> the "war against terror" as the lodestone of public policy is probably a
>> smart choice, as their budgets have increased by orders of magnitude.
>> Viewed in this specialized light, culture, rights and education must seem
>> like things for sissies. The initiative taken by Viviane Reding,
>> vice-president of the European Commission, which you pointed out a few days
>> ago, shows that the priorities of the EU are somewhat different from those
>> which led to the US losing its voting rights in UNESCO.
>> JJ.
>> ----- Mail original -----
>> De: "Salanieta T. Tamanikaiwaimaro" <salanieta.tamanikaiwaimaro at gmail.com
>> >
>> À: "apralo" <apac-discuss at atlarge-lists.icann.org>, "At-Large Worldwide"
>> <at-large at atlarge-lists.icann.org>, "ALAC Internal List" <
>> alac-internal at atlarge-lists.icann.org>
>> Envoyé: Samedi 9 Novembre 2013 12:13:42
>> Objet: [ALAC-Internal] US loses its vote in UNESCO
>> Dear All,
>> The US just lost its vote in UNESCO. For details see the Press Statement
>> released by the US Government today:
>> Dear All,
>> The US just lost its vote in UNESCO. See the Statement released by the US
>> Gov:
>> U.S. Mission to the United Nations: Statement on the Loss of U.S. Vote at
>> UNESCO <http://usun.state.gov/briefing/statements/217394.htm>
>> 11/08/2013 08:54 PM EST
>> ------------------------------
>> Today the United States lost its vote in the United Nations Educational,
>> Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) General Conference as a
>> result of legislative restrictions that prohibit the U.S. from paying its
>> dues.  While these restrictions are motivated by concerns that we share,
>> the loss of the United States' vote in UNESCO diminishes our influence
>> within an organization that is looked to around the world for leadership
>> on
>> issues of importance to our country, including the rights of women and
>> girls, Internet governance, freedom of the press, and the recognition and
>> protection of cultural heritage.  The Obama Administration has called upon
>> Congress to approve legislative changes that would allow needed
>> flexibility
>> in the application of these statutory restrictions.
>> U.S. leadership in UNESCO matters. As such, the United States will remain
>> engaged with the organization in every possible capacity, including
>> attending meetings, participating in debates, and maintaining our seat as
>> an elected member of the Executive Board until 2015.
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