In 1975, the UN General Assembly passed its notorious resolution declaring that “Zionism is a form of racism and racial discrimination.” Thanks to the collapse of the Soviet Union and the beginning of Israel-Palestinian negotiations, the resolution was repealed in 1991. But the slogan “Zionism is racism” came roaring back to life—accompanied by the now-commonplace claim that Israel is an “apartheid state”— twenty years later, as Gerald Steinberg relates:
In early September 2001, the great and the good of the world’s human-rights community gathered in Durban, South Africa for a conference called to eliminate racism and discrimination. They met just a few days after an inhuman atrocity in Jerusalem that killed and maimed Israelis in a pizzeria filled with teenagers and young families. But the Durban participants made no mention of Palestinian bombings or of the victims; for the self-proclaimed leaders of international morality, Israelis do not have human rights. Instead, participants from the UN and powerful non-governmental organizations (NGOs) focused on demonizing Israel and Zionism.
Durban was the blueprint for 21st-century anti-Semitism. Caricatures of Jews with fangs dripping blood were distributed by the Arab Lawyers Union, and delegates picked up copies of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion. Hate literature and speeches denouncing Israeli “apartheid” were accompanied by well-organized mass marches through the streets, with placards declaring “Zionism is racism.”
[Today], the Durban framework remains on the UN’s permanent agenda. On September 22, the General Assembly will host Durban 4—a one day low-profile event in which officials and affiliated NGOs will “celebrate” the successes. To their credit, President Biden, the leaders of Canada and Britain, and a number of European officials announced that their governments will not participate. But the echoes of the original anti-racist hate fest continue, with the ongoing anti-Semitism and obsessive Israel-bashing under the façade of human rights.