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UN Watch Briefing

Issue 388

Britain protests U.N. official’s “anti-Semitic” remarks

Tomorrow: Richard Falk addresses U.N. plenary

UN WATCH URGES U.S. TO SPEAK OUT

GENEVA, Oct. 24 - UN Watch today commended the British government for protesting to the U.N. over “anti-Semitic” remarks made by one of its top officials, and urged the U.S., France, Germany and other democracies to do the same during tomorrow’s U.N. debate with Richard Falk, the Human Rights Council’s permanent investigator of “Israel’s violations of the bases and principles of international law.”

In a firm demarche, the British Foreign Office told the U.N. human rights office of its “serious concerns” over “unacceptable” statements made by Mr. Falk, which were outlined by UN Watch in a letter sent this summer to Prime Minister David Cameron, who had previously committed to closely watch Falk's actions and comments. Concerns were also raised with the British government by UK Jewish institutions through the Jewish Leadership Council.

_______

UN Watch Letter to President Obama
Concerning Anti-Semitic Remarks by Richard Falk

The President
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500
United States of America

October 24, 2012

Dear President Obama.

Today the world marks UN Day, honoring the anniversary of the 1945 United Nations Charter, whose noble principles inspire the work and purpose of UN Watch.

Yet we cannot celebrate today when we know what awaits tomorrow.

Tomorrow the United Nations General Assembly will give its podium to Richard Falk, a man who promotes the conspiracy theory that 9/11 was an “inside job” by the U.S. government, endorses the Hamas terrorist group, and incites virulent hatred against America, the West, Israel and Jews. That he happens to be a top official of the U.N.’s highest human rights body only compounds the outrage.

Tomorrow, however, you have the opportunity to fight back.

The United States and other major democracies can send a powerful message in tomorrow’s debate.

We respectfully call on your government and its friends to follow the lead of Britain and condemn Mr. Falk’s latest expressions of anti-Semitism.


Αfter Richard Falk posted this cartoon on his blog, showing a dog wearing a Jewish headcover, he was condemned by British PM David Cameron and US Amb. Susan Rice. UN High Commissioner Navi Pillay called it anti-Semitic.
As we noted in our earlier letter to you on this matter, Mr. Falk recently accused “the organized Jewish community” of collective responsibility for war crimes. (See UN Watch letter in other languages: En Francais & En Espanol.)

He also provides the cover endorsement of a virulently anti-Semitic book, “The Wandering Who,” now spreading its poison around the globe. We just saw the book sitting on the shelves of Geneva’s leading university library.

As Professor Alan Dershowitz demonstrated in The New Republic, the author’s writings, both online and in his new book, “brim with classic anti-Semitic motifs that are borrowed from Nazi publications.”

With Mr. Falk’s endorsement on the front cover, the author boasts about drawing "insights from a man who . . . was an anti-Semite as well as a radical misogynist,” and a hater of “almost everything that fails to be Aryan masculinity” (p. 89-90). He declares himself a “proud, self-hating Jew” (p. 54), writes with “contempt” of “the Jew in me” (p. 94), and describes himself as “a strong opponent of … Jewish-ness” (p. 186).

Sadly, other than London’s recent protest, the U.N. and its member states have responded with deafening silence.

Yet if anti-Islamic acts by completely marginal and unknown figures merit a chorus of sharp and prompt condemnation by world figures, high U.N. officials, and diplomats, should not anti-Jewish acts by a U.N. mandate-holder—who speaks on human rights from the world body’s podium and with its imprimatur—merit the same, and so much more?

U.N. rights chief Navi Pillay is refusing to act. She insisted, in a letter to UN Watch, that Mr. Falk is answerable only to member states of the U.N. Human Rights Council.

America is one of those council members, and indeed its leading force. We therefore urge the U.S. to assume its responsibility and speak out tomorrow, loudly and clearly.

The cause of human rights and the founding principles of the United Nations must not be subverted. Thank you for your attention to this urgent matter.

Sincerely,

Hillel C. Neuer
Executive Director
UN Watch