Commentary and Newsletters

Anne Bayefsky

UN Hosts Another Event Calling for the Destruction of the State of Israel; Speaker at the United Nations praises the "End of Zionism"

Monday, March 2, 2009

The UN provides a ready platform for advocates of the destruction of the state of Israel and February 24, 2009 was no exception. In a main conference room at UN New York Headquarters, the Permanent Mission of Bolivia and an NGO called Nord-Sud XXI co-sponsored a presentation and panel discussion called "Self-Determination: International law and politics." One of the panelists was Ramsey Clark, former US Attorney General and also a founder of Nord-Sud XXI. Clark chose to use his UN platform to applaud an end to a Jewish state.

He said: "...a one state solution would be terrific; it would mean the end of Zionism."

He continued his rant against Israel's creation with: "What we have done to the Palestinian people is terrible. The recent bombing of Gaza - that was nothing compared to what happened in 1948."

The UN had plenty of notice of exactly what this UN-accredited NGO was about when it made its facilities available for what was a public meeting and advertised it on its Daily Journal.

of the United Nations
Tuesday, 24 February 2009
Programme of meetings and agenda

Tuesday, 24 February 2009

Presentation and panel discussion on "Self-determination: International law and politics" (organized by the Permanent Mission of Bolivia and Nord-Sud XXI)

From 1.15 to 2.30 p.m. in Conference Room 6.
[All are invited to attend. For further information, please contact Ms. Virginia Ott, Nord-Sud XXI (tel. 1 (203) 918-7027; e-mail

Although the Journal carries a general disclaimer, the facilities, the lunch time slot to facilitate attendance, and the advertisement are all provided at the discretion of the UN Secretariat. And they would have been well aware of the game plan. In July 2008 Nord-Sud XXI made a written submission - posted on the UN website - to the UN Human Rights Council. The submission accuses Israel of genocide from the moment of birth. "These conditions of life...for more than sixty years...are evidence of a policy intended to destroy the Palestinian people...that constitutes...the international crime of genocide committed by Israel against the Palestinian people."

The UN is also very familiar with Ramsey Clark personally. On December 10, 2008, Clark was awarded the UN Prize in the Field of Human Rights. The prize is awarded by the UN every five years "to five human rights defenders whose life's work has been outstanding." The UN's idea of outstanding is apparently Clark's notorious anti-Israel sentiments, consistent with his equally notorious clientele over the years (Saddam Hussein, Slobodan Milosevic, Nazi concentration camp commandant Karl Linnas, Nazi War criminal Jack Reimer, PLO murderers of Leon Klinghoffer). It is not surprising that one of the decision-makers in awarding Clark the UN prize was General Assembly President Miguel D'Escoto Brockmann. In November Brockmann used his GA podium to allege Israel was an apartheid state, and to call for sanctions. In January of this year he held a news conference and displayed for the world's press a photo reading "Stop Zionist terrorist massacre in Gaza."

Nord-Sud XXI has been one of the most active NGOs in the preparations for the forthcoming Durban II UN "anti-racism" conference. It has repeatedly praised the NGO Forum which took place at the Durban I hatefest - the one that declared Zionism is racism - and has called for a repeat performance. On October 16, 2008 a meeting of NGOs was held during a Durban II preparatory session in Geneva. Nord-Sud XXI urged fellow NGOs to hold another such Forum. Their only concern? "We have this problem with the friends of Israel."

NGOs are now requesting meeting rooms that the UN is making available at the same time and place as the Durban II Conference in Geneva. NGOs will also be given speaking time during the Conference itself. We will soon know what platform the UN will provide Nord-Sud XXI and such "human rights defenders" at Durban II.