US President Barack Obama has officially brought his nation into the ranks of the Alliance of Civilizations, a UN organization started in 2005 with the publicized goal of bridging the gaps between Muslim and Western civilizations. Assistant Secretary of State for International Organization Affairs Esther Brimmer led the U.S. delegation to the UN-Alliance of Civilizations (AoC) Forum, May 28 – 29, in Rio de Janeiro.
The U.S. Department of State announced earlier this month that the United States would join the Alliance of Civilizations Group of Friends. While the United States has sent observer delegations to Alliance meetings and Forums in the past, this is the first event for the United States as a Group of Friends member.
However, since its inception, the Alliance of Civilizations has pushed the idea that the overriding reason for the Muslim-Western rift is Israel, its "settlement activity" and very existence, and perceived Western support of the Jewish state.
The Alliance of Civilizations has also highlighted "a perception among Muslim societies of unjust aggression stemming from the West" regarding America's response to the Muslim terrorist attacks on its cities on September 11, 2001.
Obama announced in a statement released by the White House that joining the Alliance of Civilizations is yet another way to forward his "vision of active US engagement with other nations and international organizations."
But many in Israel fear it will only further drive a wedge between America and the Jewish state, and further embolden the enemies of both Israel and the US.
H/T Rick Lobs
The Alliance of Civilizations is an initiative proposed by the Socialist President of the Government of Spain, José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero, at the 59th General Assembly of the United Nations (UN) in 2005. It was co-sponsored by the Prime Minister of Turkey.
The Alliance promotes "religious dialogue" with the objective of establishing a greater sense of the unity of Humanity.