The U.N. Security Council voted Wednesday to unilaterally establish an international tribunal to prosecute suspects in the killing of Lebanon’s former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri whose supporters celebrated by dancing in the streets of Beirut.

The vote at U.N. headquarters in New York was 10-0 with five abstentions _ Russia, China, South Africa, Indonesia and Qatar. Nine votes were needed for passage.

South Africa hasn’t really lived up to its human-rights reputation. Still, that’s a bit of a surprise. The others, not so much.

Michael Totten observes: “What Assad fears most has come to pass.”

UPDATE: Reader Mike Hertz makes a good point:

I’m not quite sure what the Post means when it says that the Security Council “unilaterally” established a tribunal. I thought a decision taken by the Council was, by definition, collective. Does “unilateral” simply mean that the Post disapproves? Or that the U.S. was part of the group that took action (much like the Iraq coalition was referrred to as unilateral)?

Any group involving the U.S. is “unilateral,” I guess.