In flagrant violation of federal laws signed by then-presidents Bill Clinton and George H.W. Bush, outgoing President Barack Obama just illegally sent another $500 million of American tax money to a dictator-controlled United Nations “Green Climate Fund” (GCF). President-elect Trump vowed on the campaign trail to “cancel” the entire UN climate regime and the billions in payments, meaning Obama was almost out of time.
When contacted with questions about the violation of U.S. law, the U.S. State Department responded with demonstrably false statements claiming that the GCF was an “independent entity” and “not an international organization,” and therefore not subject to the funding prohibition enshrined in federal law. The UN and the GCF, however, say otherwise, often and clearly.
With the latest Obama “grant” to the UN fund from an “Economic Support Fund” created by Congress to “promote economic or political stability,” the total disbursement of U.S. tax dollars to the UN outfit is now $1 billion. The previous $500 million check was seized from money Congress appropriated to fund infectious disease research at the height of the Zika scare.
Aside from the legal violations, leading scientists and experts have slammed the controversial UN “climate” entity as a slush fund to subsidize globalist bureaucrats and Third World kleptocrats who have either impoverished their victims, or kept them in poverty. How such a grant would promote economic or political stability, as required by law, was not clear.
But Obama, with just three days left in office, was unable to fulfill his entire illegal pledge to send $3 billion of American wealth to the UN fund. That means members of Congress, who pounced on Obama's illegal pledge and vowed to block it, ended up being proven correct, saving U.S. taxpayers billions.
But the violation of the law is a serious matter and cannot be left unaddressed. And Obama already knows that sending the money to the UN fund is illegal, as almost half of the U.S. Senate sent his administration a letter in April of 2016 letting him know.
The specific laws in question were passed by Congress in 1990 and 1994. The first one, signed by then-President George H.W. Bush, bans any U.S. funding “for the United Nations or any specialized agency thereof which accords the Palestine Liberation Organization the same standing as a member state.”
The other measure, signed into law by President Clinton, prohibits the distribution of U.S. taxpayer funds to “any affiliated organization of the United Nations which grants full membership as a state to any organization or group that does not have the internationally recognized attributes of statehood.” Both measures were passed by Congress in a bid to keep the Israeli-Arab peace process alive.
In February of 2016, though, the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), under which the Green Climate Fund exists and operates, decided to admit U.S. taxpayer-funded “State of Palestine” as a member state. That decision, made knowing full well what the consequences would be, triggered the prohibition on U.S. funding of the UNFCCC and the UN GCF that it created — primarily as a means of extracting wealth from Western taxpayers to advance the UN's “climate” regime by bribing Third World dictators into playing along with the schemes.
In short, that UNFCCC decision made it illegal for Obama or Congress to send any more U.S. money to any UNFCCC entity. Under U.S. law, that prohibition specifically includes the GCF, which (until very recently) described itself on its own website as “the financial mechanism under the UNFCCC” that, under the unratified pseudo-treaty known as the UN “Paris Agreement,” supposedly “invests in low-emission, climate-resilient development.”
U.S. lawmakers made the law abundantly clear to the Obama administration in a letter sent by nearly 40 Republicans after the UNFCCC decision to admit the non-state of Palestine. “We request that you ensure that no disbursements of U.S. funds are made to the UNFCCC and its related entities after March 17, 2016,” the senators wrote to Obama's Secretary of State John Kerry in an April letter. “We believe that your failure to do so will constitute a violation of current law.... We implore the administration to ... abide by current law prohibiting U.S. taxpayer funds for the UNFCCC and its related entities and other UN affiliated organizations.”
In what may be one of the most nonsensical and Orwellian responses ever received by this writer from a federal agency, a spokesperson for the State Department offered false information “on background” purporting to justify the obvious violation of federal law. “To begin with, the Green Climate Fund is an independent entity and not an international organization,” claimed “Advisor for Environmental Communications” Emily White in the State Department Bureau of Public Affairs, contradicting the GCF's own statements about itself and common sense. “Rather, it is a trust fund with an independent board and secretariat, for which the World Bank serves as trustee.”
Despite the State Department's claims, there are mountains of evidence proving that the GCF is not just an “affiliated” international organization of the UNFCCC, but a direct component of it. At the 16th UN Conference of the Parties global-warming summit in Cancun, for example, governments and dictators established the “Transitional Committee for the Green Climate Fund.” The committee created a report, presented at the following year's UN climate summit, declaring that the “GCF would become an operating entity of the financial mechanism” of the UNFCCC. The New American attempted to reach the spokesperson by phone and e-mail for clarification, but no response was received by press time.
Addressing the laws in particular, White weaved a complex fantasy to justify the illegal move. “In addition, it is our view that neither the 1994 nor the 1990 legislative provisions that restrict contributions for certain international organizations that grant membership to the Palestinians has been triggered by the Palestinians’ purported accession to the UNFCCC,” the spokesperson said. “The UNFCCC is a treaty, and the Palestinians’ purported accession to it does not involve their becoming members of any UN specialized agency or, indeed, any international organization.”
To see whether the UNFCCC, which has 500 employees and a Secretariat based in Berlin, is really just a “treaty,” a quick visit to the UNFCCC website should suffice.
In a statement quietly posted on the U.S. State Department's website, Assistant Secretary and Department Spokesperson John Kirby with the Bureau of Public Affairs made no mention of the federal laws that prohibit the action he was celebrating. “Today, the U.S. State Department is announcing that it has made an additional $500 million grant to support the Green Climate Fund (GCF),” Kirby declared on January 17. “Consistent with last year’s GCF grant, this funding is provided from the fiscal year 2016 Economic Support Fund (ESF) appropriation.”
While Kirby made no mention of it in his deceptive statement, which lies by omission, he did acknowledge the source of the funds — the so-called ESF. And that in and of itself may be an admission of a legal violation. According to 22 U.S. Code Chapter 32, sub-chapter II, part IV, funds from the ESF may only be disbursed “in order to promote economic or political stability.” Subsidizing oppressive Third World regimes through the GCF is likely to undermine both economic and political stability by encouraging lawlessness, tyranny, cronyism, and more. It certainly did not promote U.S. national interests either, as called for in the statute.
“U.S. funding for the GCF continues U.S. government support by this and prior Administrations for climate change programs through multilateral funds,” Kirby continued. “The GCF is the world’s largest multilateral finance institution dedicated to advancing low-emission, climate-resilient development. The GCF was created to help protect vulnerable populations and drive clean energy deployment, all with a special focus on engaging the private sector and mobilizing private capital.”
In reality, as this magazine has documented extensively, the GCF was created to ensure a large slush fund needed to bring Third World governments and dictators onboard the imploding UN “climate” bandwagon. The Group of 77 Plus China, a coalition of 134 governments and mass-murdering tyrants, even openly threatened to walk away from the 2015 UN “climate” summit in Paris if Western governments did not agree to hand over $100 billion per year of taxpayers' money to their regimes.
Critics highlighted the absurdity of it all. “This is a direct subsidy to, frankly, to kleptocracies,” internationally renowned physicist Dr. Fred Singer, professor emeritus of environmental sciences at the University of Virginia, told The New American on the sidelines of the UN climate summit in Paris. “We know what happens to that money. It goes into the pockets or bank accounts of the people who run these countries — it's been happening all the time, and I think it will continue to happen. So, as someone put it, it's a matter of the poor in the rich countries supporting the rich in the poor countries.”
But Kirby tried to put a happy face on the whole scam. “The GCF supports developing nations in their efforts to achieve those objectives and to become more resilient to climate change — in turn, reducing the global and national security risks associated with inadequate adaptation to and preparedness for extreme weather events and other climate related impacts,” he said, citing “policy and regulatory reforms” to promote the UN climate schemes as the objectives being pursued.
In short, on its way out the door, Obama once again decided to spit on the American people and the rule of law to help advance his radical globalist agenda. Whether the Trump administration and Congress can recover the money illegally stolen from the American people remains to be seen. But perhaps, if nothing else, Obama and his top officials who cooperated in this heist can be held personally liable for the crime, and be forced to make restitution to the perpetually abused American taxpayer.