Anti-Semitism to Blame for Double Standard on Israel

November 1, 2013 10:16 am 1 comment

UN headquarters in New York. Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

This week Israel caved in to European and American pressure to further subject itself to egregious discrimination at the United Nations. The move was in response to a twisted appeal to Israel to preserve the fiction of a U.N. human rights system committed to equality.

On October 29, 2013, Israel ended 18-months of non-participation with U.N. human rights mechanisms that are dedicated to its demonization and defeat.

The surrender spawned victory laps by the U.N., the State Department and bigots in foreign ministries across Europe.

Leading the campaign to bring the Jewish state to its knees was none other than Germany. The diplomatic blackmail reached its apex in a letter of October 25, 2013 sent from German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Germany threatened that it “would be hard-pressed to help” Israel respond to the “severe diplomatic damage” which would allegedly have occurred if Israel failed to attend one more Israel-bashing session engineered by the U.N. Human Rights Council.

The formal procedure of Tuesday’s inquisition by the U.N.’s top human rights body was called a “universal periodic review” or “UPR.” The cyclical UPR process is applied to each state once every four years. Hence, the façade of “universality.”

However, the Council’s regular sessions occur three times a year and only Israel is specifically on the agenda every single time. In fact, the Israeli human rights record was last considered by the Council a mere five weeks ago, on September 23, 2013.

Germany’s willingness to play front man in the anti-Israel campaign ensconced at the UN is also disturbing because antisemitism is clearly at the root of the UN’s double-standards.

The negative diplomatic fallout from the supposed failure by Israel to submit to the “same” practice as every other state, therefore, could readily have been countered. That is, if Germany (with the support of the Obama administration) had not preferred to use the contrived international reaction as a tool of intimidation.

Germany’s professed concern with Israel’s participatory interests is especially duplicitous in light of its outrageous decision to block Israel from membership on the U.N. Security Council.

Candidacies for election to one of the ten rotating seats on the Security Council are announced many years in advance – Israel making its candidacy for the year 2019 known years ago.

Germany’s recent announcement that it would compete directly against Israel for the few slots reserved for Western governments effectively destroys Israel’s chances of election – which would have been a first in U.N. history.

Similarly, Germany’s self-righteousness doesn’t prevent it from attending meetings at the U.N. in Geneva that specifically bar representatives of the Jewish state.

At every session of the U.N. Human Rights Council, 192 countries divide into five regional groups, meeting out of the public eye to share information, negotiate and assign jobs and resources. 192 of 193 UN members, because Israel is excluded. Even non-UN members such as the Palestinian Authority are allowed to attend regional group meetings.

The regional group to which Israel most naturally belongs is the geographically disparate Western European and Others Group (WEOG). But WEOG – which includes Germany and the United States – refuses Israel equal admission.

Germany’s willingness to play front man in the anti-Israel campaign ensconced at the UN is also disturbing because anti-Semitism is clearly at the root of the U.N.’s double-standards.

There is no human rights explanation for the Human Rights Council’s conduct towards Israel. It denounces Israel alone in over a third of all its country-resolutions, and has never once condemned the likes of China, Russia or Saudi Arabia.

It has one permanent agenda item on Israel and one for all other192 countries. It churns out successive “anti-racism” conferences that finger Israel as the world’s only racist state.

It appoints Richard Falk as its “expert” on Israel for six years running. The man once posted on his website a caricature of a blood-covered dog devouring human bones, urinating on lady justice, and wearing a skullcap emblazoned with a Jewish star.

Now, Western governments could refuse to legitimize the body that sponsors this constant barrage of inequality directed at Israel both before and after October 29. They could at least have ended the exclusion of Israel from WEOG. Instead, they demanded that Israel legitimize the “universality” fraud for a day.

As it played out, countries lined up to denounce “Judaization” (the foul presence of a Jew on Arab-claimed land), make wild accusations about torture and systematic cruelty to children, and repeat the old Zionism-is-racism canard of a Jewish state with a racist constitution.

The irony is that the UPR’s greatest champions are the world’s most brutal regimes. The system is a triumph of moral relativism, where despots and democrats are treated as if they were genuinely alike.

During the recent farcical UPR of Canada, China complained about violence against women, North Korea about free speech and torture, Iran about discrimination, Russia about arbitrary detention, and Sudan about racial violence.

Only a week ago, the Saudi UPR included two Saudi women shrouded entirely in black allowing only slits for their eyes. One said: “I would like to underline that the system in Saudi Arabia doesn’t make a distinction between men and women.” The other defended the law allowing girls to be married off upon puberty.

If Israel had insisted on genuine equal treatment, it would have done the real victims of human rights a favor. Absent American support, Israel’s Prime Minister succumbed to the mob.

When will we learn that humiliation isn’t cost-free?

Anne Bayefsky is director of the Touro Institute on Human Rights and the Holocaust. Follow her on Twitter @AnneBayefsky

This article was originally published by FOX News.

1 Comment

Leave a Reply

Please note: comments may be published in the Algemeiner print edition.


Current day month ye@r *

More...

  • Arts and Culture Middle East Hamas Commander Reportedly Urges Hezbollah to Join Forces Against Israel

    Hamas Commander Reportedly Urges Hezbollah to Join Forces Against Israel

    JNS.org – Five months after Israeli forces tried to assassinate Hamas military commander Mohammed Deif in Gaza, Deif appears to have signed a letter that the terrorist group claims he wrote in hiding. The letter, addressed to Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah, expressed Deif’s condolences for the death of Hezbollah terrorists during Sunday’s reported Israeli airstrike in Syria. Deif is said to have survived multiple assassination attempts, but he has not been seen in public for years. According to the Hezbollah-linked Al-Manar [...]

    Read more →
  • Jewish Identity Theater Shlomo Carlebach Musical Has the Soul to Heal Frayed Race Relations

    Shlomo Carlebach Musical Has the Soul to Heal Frayed Race Relations

    JNS.org – The cracks that had been simply painted over for so long began to show in Ferguson, Mo., in November 2014, but in truth they had begun to open wide much earlier—on Saturday, July 13, 2013. That is when a jury in Sanford, Fla., acquitted George Zimmerman of culpability for the death of a 17-year-old black man, Trayvon Martin. The cracks receded from view over time, as other news obscured them. Then came the evening of Aug. 9, 2014, [...]

    Read more →
  • Theater US & Canada ‘Homeland’ Season Finale Stirs Controversy After Comparing Menachem Begin to Taliban Leader

    ‘Homeland’ Season Finale Stirs Controversy After Comparing Menachem Begin to Taliban Leader

    A controversial scene in the season finale of Homeland sparked outrage by comparing former Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin to a fictional Taliban leader, the UK’s Daily Mail reported. In the season 4 finale episode, which aired on Dec. 21, CIA black ops director Dar Adal, played by F. Murray Abraham, justifies a deal he made with a Taliban leader by referencing Begin. He makes the remarks in a conversation with former CIA director Saul Berenson, a Jewish character played by Mandy [...]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Spirituality/Tradition Placing Matisyahu Back Within a Life of Observance

    Placing Matisyahu Back Within a Life of Observance

    Shining Light on Fiction During the North Korea-Sony saga, we learned two important lessons. The first is that there are two sides to this story, and neither of them are correct because ultimately we should have neither inappropriate movies nor dictators. The second is that we cannot remain entirely fixed on the religious world, but we also must see beyond the external, secular view of reality. It’s important to ground our Torah-based thoughts into real-life activism. To view our act [...]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Blogs Nine Decades of Moses at the Movies

    Nine Decades of Moses at the Movies

    JNS.org – Hollywood has had its share of big-budget biblical flops, but until now, the Exodus narrative has not been among them. Studios have brought Moses to the big screen sparingly, but in ways that defined the image and character of Moses for each generation of audiences. The first biblical epic In 1923, director Cecil B. DeMille left it to the American public to decide the subject of his next movie for Paramount. DeMille received a letter from a mechanic [...]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Blogs Exodus on Screen (REVIEW)

    Exodus on Screen (REVIEW)

    JNS.org – The story of the Exodus from Egypt is a tale as old as time itself, to borrow a turn of phrase. It’s retold every Passover, both at the seder table and whenever “The Ten Commandments” is aired on television. But the latest adaptation—Ridley Scott’s epic film, “Exodus: Gods and Kings”—fails to meet expectations. Scott’s “Exodus” alters the source material to service the story and ground the tale, but the attempt to reinvent the biblical narrative becomes laughable. Moses [...]

    Read more →
  • Jewish Identity Lifestyle ‘Jewish Food Movement’ Comes of Age

    ‘Jewish Food Movement’ Comes of Age

    JNS.org - In December 2007, leaders of the Hazon nonprofit drafted seven-year goals for what they coined as the “Jewish Food Movement,” which has since been characterized by the increased prioritization of healthy eating, sustainable agriculture, and food-related activism in the Jewish community. What do the next seven years hold in store? “One thing I would like to see happen in the next seven years is [regarding] the issue of sugar, soda, and obesity, [seeing] what would it be like to rally the [...]

    Read more →
  • Blogs Education Seeds of ‘Start-Up Nation’ Cultivated by Israel Sci-Tech Schools

    Seeds of ‘Start-Up Nation’ Cultivated by Israel Sci-Tech Schools

    JNS.org – Forget the dioramas. How about working on an Israeli Air Force drone? That’s exactly the kind of beyond-their-years access enjoyed by students at the Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) industrial vocational high school run by Israel Sci-Tech Schools, the largest education network in the Jewish state. More than 300 students (250 on the high school level and 68 at a two-year vocational academy) get hands-on training in the disciplines of aviation mechanics, electricity and energy control, and unmanned air [...]

    Read more →



Sign up now to receive our regular news briefs.