CultureWatch

Bill Muehlenberg's commentary on issues of the day...

Durban III and Anti-Israel Mischief

Aug 30, 2011

Back in 2001 the World Conference against Racism, Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia and Related Intolerance took place in Durban, South Africa. A follow-up conference was held in Geneva in 2009. Now Durban III is about to take place in New York (September 21).

What unites all three conferences is that they have been, and will be, little more than anti-Israel gabfests. Of course anything put on by the UN has to be questioned, but these conferences have been especially reprehensible. The amount of anti-Semitism and Israel-bashing that occurs there is quite ludicrous.

As if there are no nations on earth that deserve genuine censure for genuine racism and discrimination. Because the blatant hypocrisy and anti-Israel sentiments have been so bad, a number of nations have boycotted the conferences. Around a dozen countries boycotted the 2009 session, and already some nations have declared their absence from the upcoming conference.

Fortunately Australia has been one of them. It did not go in 2009 and will not go in 2011. The US has also boycotted both. Israel, of course, along with Holland, Italy, Canada and the Czech Republic are also boycotting the September conference.

While little good can be said about Julia Gillard, she has tended to be very supportive of Israel, which is one of the few reasons for supporting her. For example, she recently tangled with former PM Rudd over the issue of voting on a Palestinian state. Rudd wants Australia to simply abstain from the vote next month, while Gillard wants a stronger stance.

And Canada is currently led by a Prime Minister who is also very strongly pro-Israel. Conservative Stephen Harper has turned Canada into arguably the most pro-Israel nation in the world at the moment, and he has consistently been so since coming to power in 2006.

But such leaders and nations are few and far between. There may be nearly 150 nations attending next month, offsetting those who will boycott the event. So we can expect to see more business as usual in New York next month. The anti-Israel venom will continue apace and unabated.

Given all this hatred of Israel, it is worth getting some perspective on things here. Just how bad is Israel? Indeed, considering the Middle East as a whole, does it make any sense to pick on Israel? American Jewish commentator Dennis Prager offers some wise words here.

He demolishes the myth that Israel is some sort of apartheid nation which needs to be demonised. Consider how Arabs are treated in Israel, in contrast to how blacks were treated in South Africa: “Not one of those restrictions applies to Arabs living in Israel.

“One and a half million Arabs live in Israel, constituting about 20 percent of that country’s population. They have the same rights as all other Israeli citizens. They can vote, and they do. They can serve in the Israeli parliament, and they do. They can own property and businesses and work in professions alongside other Israelis, and they do. They can be judges, and they are. Here’s one telling example: it was an Arab judge on Israel’s Supreme Court who sentenced the former president of Israel — a Jew — to jail on a rape charge.

“Some other examples of Arabs in Israeli life: Reda Mansour was the youngest ambassador in Israel’s history, and is now Consul General at Israel’s Atlanta Consulate; Walid Badir is an international soccer star on Israel’s national team and captain of one of Tel Aviv’s major teams; Rana Raslan is a former Miss Israel; Ishmael Khaldi was until recently the deputy consul of Israel in San Francisco; Khaled Abu Toameh is a major journalist with the Jerusalem Post; Ghaleb Majadele was until recently a Minister in the Israeli Government. They are all Israeli Arabs. Not one is a Jew. Arabs in Israel live freer lives than Arabs living anywhere in the Arab world. No Arab in any Arab country has the civil rights and personal liberty that Arabs in Israel enjoy.”

What about the Palestinians who live in the occupied territories who are not citizens of Israel? “They are governed by either the Palestinian Authority (Fatah) or by Hamas. The control Israel has over these people’s lives is largely manifested when they want to enter Israel. Then they are subjected to long lines and strict searches, because Israel must weed out potential terrorists.

“Otherwise, Israel has little control over the day-to-day life of Palestinians and was prepared to have no control in 2000 when it agreed to the establishment of an independent Palestinian state to which it gave 97 percent of the land it had conquered in the 1967 War. The Palestinian response was to unleash an intifada of terror against Israeli civilians. And what about the security wall that divides Israel and the West Bank? Is that an example of apartheid?

“That this is even raised as an issue is remarkable. One might as well mention the security fence between the United States and Mexico as an example of apartheid. There is no difference between the American wall at its southern border and the Israeli wall on its eastern border. Both barriers have been built to keep unwanted people from entering the country.

“Israel built its security wall in order to keep terrorists from entering Israel and murdering its citizens. What appears to bother those who work to delegitimize Israel by calling it an apartheid state is that the barrier has worked. The wall separating Israel from the West Bank has probably been the most successful terrorism-prevention program ever enacted.

“So why, then, is Israel called an apartheid state? Because by comparing the freest, most equitable country in the Middle East to the former South Africa, those who seek to Israel’s demise hope they can persuade uninformed people that Israel doesn’t deserve to exist just as apartheid South Africa didn’t deserve to exist.”

Much more can be said about Israel in contrast to its many antagonistic neighbours, and the bigotry of the UN. But since a picture is worth a whole lot more than mere words, this short video clip is well worth watching. Please have a look and listen: www.youtube.com/watch?v=IRf57UPdaEg

www.jta.org/news/article/2011/08/23/3089082/australia-withdraws-from-durban-iii-over-israel-bashing-fears
www.theage.com.au/national/rudd-says-abstain-on-palestine-vote-gillard-backs-israel-20110807-1ihrc.html
townhall.com/columnists/dennisprager/2011/08/30/israel_–_an_apartheid_state

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5 Responses to Durban III and Anti-Israel Mischief

  • Israel is obviously the most democratic, reasonable and humane nation in the region, if only the situation in the Middle East can be viewed through an unbiased perspective. But unfortunately the MSM has spewed its poison out so effectively that it has been able to convince much of its loyal followers that black is white and vice versa. I’m amazed by two things you mention; firstly that Stephen Harper has been able to achieve such a phenomenal amount in a country which was not known to be particularly conservative. It should give us, as Christians, hope to pray for a similar paradigm shift in our own country. Secondly, that Gillard didn’t jump onto the anti-semitic bandwagon. Thank God that for whatever reason she states, she took this stance. It is a blessing on Australia that we are not one of Israel’s harassers. However, being a bit of a skeptic, I have trouble believing that this is not just a token thrown out to distance herself a bit from the Greens extremists.

    Dee Graf

  • Thanks Dee

    Yes you are right on both counts. Harper is a conservative anomaly in a leftist screwball nation. But we are thankful he is there, and it must be a God thing.

    And yes it is curious as to why Julia takes this stance but it is a good thing she is taking it. It is probably the only reason she has been allowed to stay in power for this long, but her days are clearly numbered nonetheless.

    Bill Muehlenberg, CultureWatch

  • Bill I came across the six U-Tubes vids (links below) relating to major incidents happening in the States immediately after a decision is made by different administrations and leaders to work against Israel.

    They are headed “America Under Judgement”. I found them compelling and thought your readers would like to look them up. God still jealously guards His Israel for the sake of His own word sake.

    I wonder if we look at our own history if we can see God’s hand of warning over Australia. I believe the UK has been punished for her treachery towards Israel. She is only a shadow of her former self.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ncZan8r6BNs&feature=related

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bZJDDBuVA28&feature=related

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RsuU88qJ8aM&feature=related

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NrcHAsngA7I&feature=related

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QPsdkD_DOaM&feature=related

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1M2sK_MveCA&feature=related

    You have posted some stiring heartfelt articles Bill. May the fruit of your labours remain when your work has been tested on that day.

    Keith Lewis

  • As a proud Canadian, there have been many prophecies about the **Dominion** of Canada leading the way. It will take time to see which of these wonderful prophecies about Canada will come true. Many of our prayer groups and churches prayed hard for a majority Conservative government, earlier, as there are many good Christian men and women sitting in our Parliament.

    Many liberal types did whatever they could to try to stop Harper, and yet he still stands strong for Israe even with the media flogging him over losing a UN security seat over it. This man never flinched. He stood strong and is never afraid to say “God Bless Canada”, and mean it. Even so, he is still a politician 😉

    What is also little known is the fourth stanza in our national anthem:
    Ruler supreme, who hearest humble prayer,
    Hold our Dominion in thy loving care;
    Help us to find, O God, in thee
    A lasting, rich reward,
    As waiting for the better Day,
    We ever stand on guard.
    Refrain:
    God keep our land glorious and free!
    O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.
    O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.

    I believe our country stands on those words; or falls on those words if we should ever forget them.

    Monica Craver

  • Great article Bill. It’s rather late at the moment, otherwise I’d comment more, but I agree with everything you say.
    Scott Buchanan

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