David Ben-Gurion’s famous statement “Oom, Shmoom,” meaning “The UN - who cares?” summed up Israel’s indifference to world opinion in the past. It has been a failed policy as Israel’s enemies are now using all global means at their disposal to undermine the Jewish State.
In a few days, Israel will mark Holocaust Commemoration Day. There is no better time to support the historical battle just initiated by the Hebrew University-Hadassah Centre for Violence and Genocide Prevention and backed by former US ambassador to the United Nations John Bolton and Harvard law professor Alan Dershowitz.
Jew-hater Ahmadinejad (Photo: AFP)
The campaign takes aim at Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Islamic religious leaders and the media for “inciting to commit genocide" and fomenting lethal anti-Jewishness reminiscent of the 1930s. The Jews are demonized using accusations of conspiracy and thirst for blood or power.
The Jews are described as sub-humans by expressions like “pig,” “cancer,” “filth”, “microbes” or “vermin”; hate material such as the Protocols of the Elders of Zion or school maps without Israel are being disseminated; the Jewish right to self-determination is denied, by claiming that Israel’s existence is “racist” and akin to “apartheid”; comparisons are drawn between Israeli policy and the Nazis; world Jewry is being held responsible, collectively for the actions of Israel.
Killing pregnant womenThe legal basis for this anti-genocide campaign is the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, ratified on January 12, 1951 by 138 states including Iran. At this time, Tehran calls for Israel’s destruction and dehumanization, denies the Holocaust denial and incites to commit mass murder.
An upcoming example of incitement is the UN's “Durban III” conference in September 2011. Israel will be declared an “apartheid” and “criminal” state, and the Jews will be slammed as inveterate racists.
The first Durban conference was held in South Africa in 2001, where well-known NGOs such as Amnesty International and Save the Children attached their names to the racist parade. NGOs distributed leaflets with a portrait of Hitler and the inscription: “What if Hitler had won? There would be no Israel, and no Palestinian bloodshed.” Three months later the second Intifada broke out, with 1,500 Jewish civilians subsequently slaughtered in terror attacks.
Anti-Israel protest (Photo: AP)
Iran is not unique in inciting a new Jewish bloodbath. Another example of incitement is the fatwa issued by Muslim Brotherhood’s guru, Yusuf al-Qaradawi, permitting the killing of Jewish fetuses, on the logic that when Jews grow up they might join the Israeli army.
Below are just few names of pregnant Israeli women slaughtered by terror groups such as Hamas and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad: Yael Shorek was nine-months pregnant; Gadi and Tzippi Shemesh were killed immediately after having a scan of their unborn twins; Avital Wolanski was six-months pregnant; Rivka Holzberg was five-months pregnant; Tali Hatuel was eight-months pregnant, and Tehiya Bloomberg was five-months pregnant.
In 2003 the World Union for Progressive Judaism asked UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan and the UN Human Rights Commission to condemn the Hamas' charter as a violation of the Convention against Genocide. A year later, three brave Arab intellectuals, Jawad Hashim, Shakir al-Nabulsi and Lakhdar Lafif sent a request to the UN Security Council, urging the establishment of an international tribunal for the prosecution of Islamist incitement against Jews, Muslim “apostates” and Christians.
Abraham Joshua Heschel wrote that it was words, not machinery, that produced Auschwitz. Now the call for Israel’s destruction echoes through schools and mosques, textbooks and newspapers, TV series and pseudo “documentaries.” And not only in the Arab world. Thanks to satellite channels, Hezbollah’s al-Manar and Hamas’ al-Aqsa TV stations can beam their incitement and hatred for the Jews into European living rooms, radicalizing Muslim immigrants.
It won't end with the JewsThat’s why Israel and its Western allies must launch a campaign to charge organizations and leaders who commit incitement, enlisting the help of attorneys, journalists and writers to testify on the endless litanies of paranoia and genocidal perversion. Such people risk their career and life daily by denouncing the blood libels, and Israel should support them.
Western parliaments would politically validate the charges and Europe must be urged to cut its business dealing with Tehran if the mullahs continue to incite against the Jews. Irwin Cotler, Canada's former minister of justice and attorney general, suggested that Ahmadinejad and other incitement leaders should be placed on a “watch list” by Western countries preventing their entrance as “inadmissible persons” (Qaradawi is already banned in the UK and US.)
Brave groups, such as UN Watch, can support the battle in legal forums. They could launch a counter campaign against UNESCO's racist policy on Judaism’s holy sites (Rachel’s tomb and the Cave of Patriarchs in Hebron were just designed as “mosques.”) In 2009, a similar campaign prevented Farouk Hosni, the Egyptian minister who said that he “would burn Israeli books himself if found in Egyptian libraries” from becoming UNESCO's head.
Moreover, human rights groups should be bombarded with the untold Israeli statistics: The 17,000 people wounded in terror attacks; the 1,600 civilians killed; the 12,000 rockets fired on southern Israeli cities; the fact that some 40% of wounded Israelis will remain with permanent disabilities.
There are wounded heroes who just want to tell their story. They should be invited to speak in the courts because they are the survivors of current-day genocide.
In European faculties, there are still brave academicians who can denounce Islamist-supporting speakers among them. An example of incitement is the book “The Matza of Zion” written by former Syrian defense minister Mustafa Tlas, in which he claims that the Jewish matzot was made from Arab blood. Still, the West maintains shameful partnerships with Arab libraries holding this book. Western democracies must be urged to rescind these cultural deals.
This is an historical battle that Israel can win with the support of Westerners who still care about the fate of their civilization. To the Spanish fascists who were saying “Viva la muerte!”, the Republicans replied: “No pasarán.” We should offer the same response to contemporary death cultists. As history has taught us, while it begins with Jews, it does not end with Jews.
Giulio Meotti, a journalist with Il Foglio, is the author of the book A New Shoah: The Untold Story of Israel's Victims of Terrorism
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