Why, You Ask, Can't I Take The UN Conference On Racism Seriously?

by Pejman Yousefzadeh on April 20, 2009

This is why:

British delegates joined a dramatic diplomatic walkout today when President Ahmadinejad of Iran told a major UN conference against racism that the state of Israel had been founded “on the pretext of Jewish suffering” during the Second World War.

Around 20 delegates, including envoys from the UK, France, and Finland stood up and left the room at what was considered an anti-Semitic remark by the Iranian leader, who has repeatedly called for Israel to be wiped off the map.

Nine Western countries including Israel and the United States had already decided to boycott the conference entirely because its draft declaration endorsed the conclusions of an anti-racism conference in South Africa eight years ago in which Islamic nations pushed through a text equating Zionism with racism.

Even before the walkout, Mr Ahmadinejad’s speech had been interrupted by three protesters dressed as clowns who where quickly bundled from the vast conference room at the Palais des Nations by guards.

[. . .]

The conference opened as Israel marks Holocaust Remembrance Day – which falls this year on the 120th anniversary of Adolf Hitler’s birth. This morning the Israeli Prime Minister, Binyamin Netanyahu, told his Cabinet that while Israel commemorates the six million Jews slaughtered by the Nazis, “in Switzerland, the guest of honour is a racist and a Holocaust-denier who doesn’t conceal his intention to wipe Israel off the face of this earth”.

Don’t think for a moment that Ahmadinejad was not aware of this calendar coincidence.

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