Ambassador Power’s UN Speech on Antisemitism Ignores Islamic Jew-Hatred
A prominent survey recently concluded: “Perpetrators of the most extreme cases of violence against European Jews in recent years were Muslims.” And on US college campuses, the radical Islamist group Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) is the major perpetrator of antisemitism (click here for evidence).
It was thus deeply disappointing that during her speech at the United Nations “antisemitism” conference on September 7, 2016, US Ambassador to the UN Samantha Power failed even to mention “Muslim” or “Islamic” antisemitism, which happens to constitute a major portion of the physical and verbal anti-Jewish attacks around the world today. For instance, Ambassador Power stated: “On July 1, a cement-filled bottle was thrown through the window of a local Jewish center in Santa Fe, Argentina with the message, ‘This is a warning, the next one explodes.’” Ambassador Power left out the fact that the note attached to the cement-filled bottle also read “Allahu Akbar,” and included the logo of the Islamic State.
Ambassador Power also failed to mention instances of even more violent antisemitism in South America, such as the Muslim who stabbed to death a Jewish man (and wounded the Jewish victim’s son) in Uruguay in March, while shouting “Allahu Akbar.”
And in still another example, Ambassador Power referred to the “horrific terrorist attack on a kosher supermarket in Paris,” without mentioning that the perpetrator of this deadly attack on Jews was a radical Somali Islamist who also declared “Allahu Akbar” as he murdered victims that he selected for their Jewish faith.
It is also deeply disappointing that the only time Ambassador Power mentioned Muslims during her entire speech was when she misleadingly complained that rising antisemitism goes “hand in hand” with “xenophobic” efforts to bar Muslim immigration. In fact, Muslim immigration goes “hand in hand” with rising terrorist attacks on Jews and persons of other faiths in Western nations. It is not “xenophobic” to want to limit immigration by a population infiltrated with ISIS members and other radical Islamists — and who, according to FBI Director James Comey, can’t be properly vetted.
Ambassador Power also never mentioned the critical role of the SJP and Muslim campus groups in committing hate crimes against Jewish students, or harassing and threatening them.
For instance, Ambassador Power stated: “In February, not far from here in Brooklyn College, a group of student activists interrupted a faculty meeting demanding that all Zionists be removed from campus.” Yet she omitted the fact that this was one of the many incidents that was instigated by the SJP, and that it was related to the SJP’s antisemitic activities at Brooklyn College and other CUNY campuses.
In addition to omitting the radical Muslim perpetrators of violent antisemitic attacks, Ambassador Power adopted the diversionary tactic of focusing much of her talk on alleged right wing (generally non-violent) neo-Nazi antisemitism. For instance, she expounded at length on an isolated, unsuccessful proposal to erect a statue to honor an official who was a Nazi collaborator in Hungary. By contrast, Ambassador Power never breathed a single word about the innumerable ways that the Palestinian Authority (PA) honors Muslim terrorists who murder innocent Jews. The PA names streets, sports clubs, schools, and public squares — and sponsors television specials and holidays — for these terrorists, and pays those terrorists stipends for murdering Jews.
Sadly, Ambassador Power also ignored the helpful existing State Department definition of antisemitism, which includes: holding Israel to a double standard of behavior not expected of other democratic nations; comparing Israeli policy to that of the Nazis; blaming Israel for all inter-religious or political tensions; exposing NGOs that focus peace or human rights investigations only on Israel; and denying the Jewish people’s right to self-determination, and Israel’s right to exist.
Ambassador Power should have called for worldwide adoption of this existing definition. Instead, she called for countries to draft and adopt a weak new definition of antisemitism that apparently legitimizes much antisemitic criticism of Israel.
We urge Ambassador Power to acknowledge that radical Islam is the major perpetrator of rising antisemitism, and anti-Jewish and anti-Western terrorism.
Morton A. Klein is the President of the Zionist Organization of America (ZOA). Elizabeth A. Berney, Esq. is ZOA’s Director of Special Projects.