THE UNITED NATIONS
The United Nations is the largest intergovernmental organization in the world. It was established in 1945, in the aftermath of World War II, and soon replaced its precursor, the League of Nations (1920-1946). The stated purpose of the United Nations is to maintain international peace and security, develop relations among countries, and advance international cooperation. Currently, there are 193 United Nations member states, representing almost every sovereign nation in the world.
The United Nations is headquartered in New York City and maintains other offices in Geneva, Nairobi, Vienna, and The Hague, the latter which is home to the International Court of Justice.
There exist 6 principal organs within the UN: the General Assembly, the Security Council, the Economic and Social Council, the Trusteeship Council, the International Court of Justice, and the UN Secretariat.
The UN has received a plethora of criticism over its 77-year run. Among the biggest criticisms is its relentless antisemitic bias.
Every single permanent member of the United Nations Security Council — China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom, and the United States — has a history of systemic and institutional antisemitism.
In China, for instance, as of 2018, the Chinese government has engaged in an intense crackdown on Kaifeng Jewry. Government officials raided the small synagogue, tore down Hebrew signs and scripture, and destroyed the mikvah. Experts worry that the community of ~1000 Jews will soon face similar treatment to that of Uyghur Muslims (Uyghur genocide deniers in the comments will be blocked, by the way).
France, too, has a long history of antisemitism, including ethnic cleansing (see my post ANTISEMITISM IN FRANCE: AN OVERVIEW), and as of 2020, an American Jewish Committee survey found that 23% of French Jews have been victims of physical antisemitic attacks. Russia has one of the gravest records of antisemitism in the world, including genocide and ethnic cleansing (see my posts THE POGROMS OF THE RUSSIAN CIVIL WAR, REFUSENIKS, THE DOCTORS’ PLOT, and THE JEWISH AUTONOMOUS OBLAST). The United Kingdom also has a history of pogroms and Jewish ethnic cleansing: Jews were banned from England between 1290 and 1657, and the recent Labour Party antisemitism controversy has made it clear to Jews that British antisemitism is not a thing of the past.
Though only 2% of the American population, Jews are the victims of 60% of religiously motivated hate crimes and about 10% of *all* hate crimes, meaning we are the most disproportionately targeted minority in the United States. As of the 1970s, Jews still experienced housing discrimination and university quotas. And, of course, the American behavior during the Holocaust is nothing short of shameful.
The fourth UN Secretary General (1972-1981), Kurt Waldheim, was a former Nazi intelligence officer. He also served as President of Austria from 1986 to 1992. During the 1986 Austrian presidential campaign, it was revealed that Waldheim had worked for the Nazis in Greece and Yugoslavia during World War II. He still won the election.
Waldheim served in the Nazi Wehrmacht from 1941 to 1945. During his service, Waldheim received several honors from both Nazi Germany and the Nazi puppet state known as the Independent State of Croatia.
Perhaps most damning is Waldheim’s involvement in Operation Kozara in 1942, during which prisoners — including civilians — were repeatedly shot within only a few hundred meters from his office. Thousands of Serbian civilians were also deported to Jasenovac concentration camp, which was only 35 km away from Waldheim’s office. Waldheim later claimed he “did not know about the murder of civilians there” and that at the time he had not been aware of any Nazi war crimes.
Nevertheless, during the Holocaust, Waldheim reviewed and approved antisemitic propaganda leaflets that stated “Enough of the Jewish war, k!ll the Jews, come over.”
“ZIONISM IS RACISM”
In 1969, the United Nations passed the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination. Both the United States and Brazil wanted to add a clause including antisemitism. The Soviet Union, which had been heavily oppressing its Jewish population since the 1950s (see my posts THE DOCTORS’ PLOT, REFUSENIKS, THE PERSECUTION OF SOVIET JEWS, and THE JEWISH AUTONOMOUS OBLAST), worried that such a clause would be used to rebuke them for persecuting Soviet Jews. As such, they included a counter proposal, which was a clause that equated Zionism to Nazism. That way, they could say they were persecuting Zionists, not Jews. While neither clause passed (yes, that’s correct: the UN refused to condemn antisemitism), this laid the groundwork for the Soviets and the Arab League to push the “Zionism is racism” resolution in 1975.
On November 10, 1975, on the 37th anniversary of the Nazi pogrom (anti-Jewish riot, massacre) of Kristallnacht, the United Nations, headed by the Soviet Union, Soviet satellite states, and the 20+ countries in the Arab League, passed Resolution 3379, stating that Zionism is a form of racism. The resolution passed 75 to 35, with 32 abstentions.
The resolution never defined Zionism, nor did it explain, how and why, exactly, Zionism is a form of racism (shouldn’t a resolution on something start by defining what that something is?).
Out of thousands of independence and nationalist movements in the world (including Palestinian nationalism!), only the Jewish movement has ever had a UN resolution condemning it. The double standard is not just there; it’s glaring.
Following the dissolution of the Soviet Union, Russia all but admitted that Resolution 3379 had been nothing more than a Cold War propaganda ploy, calling it “a relic of the Ice Age.” In December of 1991, UN Resolution 46/86 revoked Resolution 3379. For more on this, see my post THE BLATANT ANTISEMITISM BEHIND UN RESOLUTION 3379.
Criticism of Israel is not antisemitism. “Criticism of Israel” that uses antisemitic tropes and double standards *is* antisemitic. Subjecting the only Jewish state and the only Jewish-majority state to a different standard than all other countries is rooted in antisemitism. For perspective, there are some 50 countries that are officially Muslim or practice Sharia law, and some 13 countries that are officially Christian. Over 110 countries are majority Christian, and 50 countries are majority Muslim.
As of 2013, the State of Israel, the only Jewish majority state, where nearly 50% of the world’s Jews live, was condemned in 45 resolutions, accounting for 45% of ALL UN resolutions. In 2020, alone, Israel was condemned in 17 resolutions, compared to 6 resolutions for the rest of the world combined.
Whatever one thinks of Israel’s policies, it’s impossible not to see the double standards. Israel is a country the size of New Jersey with just 9.2 million people (for comparison, the United States has 329.5 million people, France has 67.39 million people, Egypt has 102.3 million people, and there are about 9 million people in New York City alone). It’s ludicrous that such a small country with such a small population could account for nearly 50% of the world’s injustices.
The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East, or UNRWA for short, is a UN agency dedicated to the “relief and human development” of Palestinian refugees. It’s the only such UN agency that exists for *any* of the world’s 26.6 million refugees. In other words, refugees from all other countries do not have similar agencies working on their behalf.
There are a plethora of problems and criticisms of the UNRWA, most notably, that it keeps Palestinians as “perpetual refugees” (when a refugee becomes a citizen of another country, they lose their refugee status. The UNRWA has kept Palestinians refugees for the past 74 years). I will not delve further into these criticisms because I want to focus specifically on the UNRWA’s history and pattern of antisemitism.
In 2021, a report found that 22 UNRWA teachers have “incited violence, shared photos praising Adolf Hitler, and spread antisemitic conspiracy theories on social media.” There have been over 100 recorded incidents since 2015.
UNRWA schoolteachers have praised the 1929 Hebron massacre, the 1972 Munich Massacre, endorsed violence, posted photos of themselves and schoolchildren brandishing weapons, and more. Additionally, UNRWA schools have hired known Palestinian terrorists, and reportedly, Hamas, the virulently antisemitic organization that rules the Gaza Strip (see my post HAMAS & ANTISEMITISM), has repeatedly interfered with the UNRWA school curriculum. Israel has alleged — and provided video evidence — of UNRWA facilities harboring Hamas terrorists.
In May of 1960, the State of Israel “extracted” Adolf Eichmann, known as the “architect of the [Nazi] Final Solution,” from Argentina, which had long provided a safe haven for Eichmann and his family after the Holocaust. The reason for this secret mission was that the Israeli government was aware that the Argentinian government had repeatedly refused to turn over Nazi war criminals, thus helping them escape justice.
The idea that Adolf Eichmann should face a trial for his war crimes should’ve been a no brainer, and while Jews worldwide celebrated his “kidnapping,” the world at large — and the United Nations — was in an uproar that Israel had “violated Argentinian sovereignty” by capturing Eichmann.
The following month, the United Nations passed Security Council Resolution 138, staring that Israel had “violated Argentinian sovereignty” and “endangered international peace and security,” and, as such, Israel owed Argentina reparations.
Yes, that’s right: the United Nations decided that the only Jewish state in the world should pay Argentina reparations for capturing one of the biggest Nazi war criminals, a Nazi war criminal that, given a choice, Argentina would not have turned over.
Ultimately the “dispute” between Israel and Argentina was solved via direct negotiations, with Israel admitting that it had indeed violated Argentinian sovereignty.
The 2001 World Conference Against Racism, colloquially known as the Durban Conference, was a UN-backed conference held in Durban, South Africa from August 31-September 8, 2001.
The conference had two main stated purposes: (1) to discuss compensation for colonialism and slavery, and (2) to discuss the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict. Both Israel and the United States withdrew over a draft document that equated Zionism with racism and an increasingly hostile antisemitic environment.
Copies of the infamously antisemitic text, The Protocols of the Elders of Zion, were sold on the conference grounds. Attendees were handed out fliers with Hitler’s face, stating, “What if I had won?” Jewish participants — Israeli or not — expressed concern for their safety.
In addition to the main conference, a concurrent conference was held for international NGOs. A Jewish Caucus proposed that Holocaust denial and antisemitic violence in the name of anti-Zionism should be labeled as antisemitism. The proposal was defeated, with only Jews voting in favor of it.
Two days after the end of the conference, Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, Lawyers for Human Rights, and Physicians for Human Rights admitted that the conference had been chock full of antisemitic vitriol. Nevertheless, while “objecting to some of the [antisemitic] language,” Amnesty International accepted the resolution that came out of the conference, which called Israel a “racist apartheid state.”
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