The United Nations General Assembly has just adopted
condemning denials of the Holocaust. The resolution, co-sponsored by 103 countries,
was approved by consensus, without a vote.
Perhaps it's too early to predict the reactions to this fresh UN resolution,
but let us try to speculate what they might be.
Outrage in Israel
Both major Israeli tabloids will surely be headlined,
in huge red letters: "UN DOUBLE-FACED." Editorials will be dedicated to
unmasking the UN's hypocrisy. Israeli ministers and ambassadors will unanimously
quote these wise words from the Web site of Israel's permanent mission to the
automatic majority enjoyed by the Arab-Moslem bloc enables this group to pass
any anti-Israel resolution it chooses, no matter how one-sided it may be. This
same automatic majority blocks the adoption of any resolution that has any hint
of criticism against the Palestinians or any Arab state."
The most recent resolution, everyone will agree, is just more evidence of the
UN's traditional anti-Israeli automatism. Once again, the UN has exposed its
obsession with Israel and the Jews.
Following the public outrage, TV studios will
invite the best talking heads from Israel's leading faculties of history to
remind viewers that even without resorting to the Age of Discovery in the Americas,
there have been many mass murders in the 20th century alone: the Armenian genocide,
Stalin's purges, Mao's Great Leap Forward, Cambodia, Rwanda, the former Yugoslavia,
to name only some of them. The UN hasn't passed a similar resolution regarding
the denial of any of them, nor are they mentioned in the present resolution.
Once again, it's the Jews, the whole Jews, and nothing but the Jews. Several
Israeli columnists will compare the recent resolution with that of 1975, when
the UN equated Zionism
with racism: both resolutions, they will argue, reflect an anti-Semitic
bias – the Jews are always at the center. A major columnist in Ma'ariv
will even criticize Israel's ambassador to the UN for not tearing in half the
resolution's draft, like his predecessor did in 1975. "It's high time the UN
stopped behaving as if only Jews existed," the columnist will complain.
"There are more than 150 nations on earth, please leave us alone!"
The unanimity with which the resolution was adopted will not be left unmentioned
either. "Not even our traditional friends Micronesia and Marshall Islands voted
against," a columnist for Ha'aretz will complain: "The one-mindedness
and one-sidedness of the UN members reminds one of elections in totalitarian
states, where tyrants are supported by 99 percent of the votes. A resolution
adopted so unanimously is either trivial or severely biased. At any rate, it
cannot and should not be take seriously by any peace-loving people."
Worse Crimes Elsewhere
The outrage will not be confined to Israel. English-speaking
historians like Prof. Simon Schama will lend a hand to reject the prejudiced
resolution. In an article written together with legal expert Anthony Julius
in The Guardian, Schama will quote his own recent protest against
a similarly biased call to boycott Israel; that call, he noted, "says
nothing about the egregious human rights abuses committed elsewhere in the world
(Darfur, Chechnya, and many other places)." The latest UN resolution,
as Schama and Julius will rightly point out, suffers from the very same flaw:
once again, the Jews are singled out. The resolution "purports
to affirm universal, human rights values," but in fact "it
is incapable of explaining why" it deplores just the
denial of the genocide of Jews, "alone
among the nations of the world." As the two scholars would stress,
while men are being butchered and women raped en masse in Sudan, the
UN finds it worthwhile to condemn the denial of a genocide whose last victims
were murdered over 60 years ago. Meanwhile, the genocide in Darfur continues,
not to mention the bloody chaos in U.S.-occupied Iraq. There's no better evidence
for the total moral bankruptcy of the UN, as Schama and Julius will undoubtedly
Who's Afraid of Nuclear Weapons?
Legal scholar Alan Dershowitz will demonstrate
his professional skills by analyzing the speech of the Israeli ambassador to
the UN, Danny Gillerman. Gillerman said that while the UN was deploring the
denial of the Holocaust, a member state – namely Iran – was developing means
to carry out yet another genocide. Dershowitz will easily expose the flaw in
this argument: if possessing nuclear weapons is enough to accuse a nation of
genocidal intentions, it is in fact Israel rather than Iran that should be blamed.
After all, Iran is just trying to get some of the weapons of mass destruction
that Israel already possesses. And while Iran is not at war with any of its
neighbors and not occupying any foreign lands, Israel is officially at war with
several Arab countries and has been occupying Palestinian lands for 40 years.
"So you tell me what's more dangerous," Dershowitz will rhetorically ask:
"a state that undoubtedly possesses nuclear weapons, or a state accused of trying
to get them?!"
American Jewry will be outraged, too. The Anti-Defamation
League (ADL), under its vociferous director Abe Foxman, will not remain silent.
anti-Israel bias at the UN," as the ADL has been calling it for a long
time, breaks new records: while a full, respected member of the UN, namely Turkey,
openly denies the genocide of the Armenians and threatens states willing to
acknowledge that genocide, the UN bothers to take issue exclusively with denial
of the Jewish Holocaust, which is criminally prosecuted in many countries and
denied only by quite insignificant individuals and organizations, or at a lunatic
conference in Iran in which even some Jews took part. Needless to say, Turkey
supported the new resolution. Once again, Foxman will say, we have damning evidence
of the UN's hypocrisy, and of the fact that the Gentiles "love
us when we are dead."
None of this, of course, is going to happen. None
of those who always protest the "singling out" of Israel's atrocities, who always
invoke other tragedies when Israel is criticized, will bother to say a single
word when the Holocaust is singled out for Israel's benefit. The only country
to object to the resolution was Iran, arguing that the Holocaust is used to
distract the world from Israel's crimes against the Palestinians.
Sure, the Holocaust is one of the greatest crimes in human history, and its
denial is morally despicable, but there are much most urgent issues to tackle.
The Armenian genocide is denied much more than the Holocaust: just two weeks
ago, a journalist
best known for his writing and public statements about the Armenian genocide
was murdered in Turkey. The genocide in Darfur is carried out at this very moment,
not decades ago; unlike the Holocaust, it can still be stopped. And the Palestinian
tragedy – genocide
or not – unquestionably costs more lives than any denial of the Holocaust ever
All this doesn't bother any of the "don't-single-out-Israel" cavaliers with
their brazen hypocrisy. So next time you hear them cry out "anti-Semitism!"
when Israel is criticized, next time you watch them invoke atrocities from all
over the globe just to distract from Israel's crimes, please ask them whether
they protested against this latest UN resolution as well, or whether hypocrisy
is welcome as long as they benefit from it.