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New UN Commission of Inquiry Report a Masterpiece of Modern Antisemitism

 
Filed under: Jerusalem

New UN Commission of Inquiry Report a Masterpiece of Modern Antisemitism
Press Briefing on United Nations Independent International Commission of Inquiry on Occupied Palestinian Territory, June 14, 2022, in Switzerland. Navanethem Pillay (center), the chair of the commission of inquiry between Miloon Kothari (right) and Chris Sidoti (left), members of the Commission. (UN Photo/Jean Mark Ferré)

Guilty of Nazi-like crimes. That’s the verdict of a United Nations “Commission of Inquiry”1 on Israel that was created by the UN Human Rights Council to commit the Nazi-like crime of demonizing and destroying the Jewish state. Archetypal moral inversion.

The “inquiry” was created in May 20212 and released its first report to the General Assembly on October 20, 2022.3 Not one Western democracy voted to create the “inquiry,” but the UN’s top human rights body has rather unusual characteristics. Only 30% of Human Rights Council members are free democracies; Islamic states hold the balance of power through a system of regional groups, and its members include such human rights luminaries as China, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, and Venezuela.

The “inquiry” is in keeping with its architects. All three members of the “inquiry” were selected because they had already declared Israel guilty of the crimes they were charged with investigating.4 The mandate of the “inquiry” oozes double-standards in its massive breadth, scope, and resources.5

The “inquiry” issued a first report to the Human Rights Council in June 20226 and it didn’t take long for its members to distinguish themselves by pushing antisemitic tropes. Member Chris Sidoti from Australia dismissed the voices of Jewish victims of discrimination with the retort that “accusations of antisemitism are thrown around like rice at a wedding.”7 In July, member Miloon Kothari from India claimed that “the Jewish lobby” and its money controlled social media and the inquiry’s bad press.8 He also suggested kicking Israel out of the UN.

The Chair of the “inquiry,” former UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay, is herself a pusher of “the extremist Israel lobby” canard, the “apartheid Israel” slander, and BDS (boycotts, divestment and sanctions).9 So in August, Pillay unleashed an unapologetic self-serving defense of her colleagues’ appalling behavior.10 UN authorities did nothing to remove them from office.11 Obviously they had all violated the basic UN rules requiring impartiality, objectivity and personal integrity12 – but that’s why they had been chosen in the first place.

While the new October report to the General Assembly is, therefore, not a surprise, it is a disturbing testimony to the moral turpitude of the UN human rights apparatus and its functionaries.

The report is sprinkled with a series of highlighted quotations from Palestinians in Hebron.13 They are all undated, unsigned, anonymous accusations accompanied by no evidence, not so much as a footnote. One contains a blood libel about Jews arriving at Palestinian homes in the middle of the night threatening to burn the human beings inside.14 Another claims that Jews are child molesters intent on feeling the breasts of Palestinian girls.15

So how did the inquisitors conduct their “fact-finding”? They issued a “call for submissions” in the fall of 202116 and officially claimed they wanted specifics about victims of “systematic discrimination and repression” as well as “underlying root causes” of the Israeli-Palestinian Arab conflict. There was no start or end date on facts, perpetrators, or crimes.

In response, through the Touro Institute on Human Rights and the Holocaust, and Human Rights Voices, I facilitated over five million unique submissions relating to Jewish victims of said “systematic discrimination and repression” and the roles played by Palestinians and other Arab perpetrators.17 Over the winter and spring of 2022, carefully documented photos, videos, statements, names and statistical evidence from such research centers as Palestinian Media Watch, The Meir Amit Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center, Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI), the Jewish Virtual Library, and the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting and Analysis (CAMERA) were all transmitted to the “inquiry” – and those transmissions were meticulously recorded at our end.

These submissions were an unprecedented response in the history of the UN human rights system. Also unprecedented: every one of our submissions was thrown in the UN trash apparently even before reading them. Specifically addressing our submissions at a UN news conference in June, Pillay declared “I’ve not seen them” and “all of them would be pro-Israel.”18

We didn’t stop. Over the summer, we facilitated the submission of 180,316 additional files. They detailed 190,161 individual Jewish victims of persecution and oppression, as well as the Palestinian Arab connections to those events. They specified 5,875 attacks by Palestinians and their collaborators in the 21st century. And they chronicled six Arab wars against the Jewish state, in addition to eight defensive Israeli military operations in response to Arab aggression in the 20th century.

In light of the latest “inquiry” report, we now know that those submissions were also all trashed, demonstrating that the UN “investigation” is phony, a con, period. The inquisitors do boast that they conducted interviews “with primary and secondary sources” and “in-person and online discussions with stakeholders.”19 And their report has sixty-five sourced “citations” from eighteen organizations. But every one of them trash-talks Israel and nothing from a single participating so-called “pro-Israel” NGO or “stakeholder” sees the light of day.

The shameless prejudice exhibited in the report is shocking, even by UN standards. The “Summary” of the report to the General Assembly – a summary of an inquiry billed as discerning “all underlying root causes” of the conflict – brazenly announces that it is only about “the human rights implications for Palestinians.”20 Not any “human rights” of Jewish Israelis.

In this setting, historical revisionism runs rampant. One anonymous, undated “inquiry” factoid quotes a Palestinian declaring that Hebron is “our land and our fathers’ and grandfathers’ land.”21 There’s no footnote there either. Perhaps because in fact, Hebron is the world’s oldest Jewish community, the site of the first parcel of land purchased by Abraham and owned by the Jewish people in their promised land, the burial site of almost all of Judaism’s patriarchs and matriarchs, mentioned dozens of times in the Bible, and only periodically rendered Judenrein in parts of the 20th century by Arab massacres of its Jewish inhabitants, British expulsion, and Jordanian use of force.

The report’s declarations of Israeli human rights violations run wild. Among them, Israelis are at fault for Palestinian women and girls’ hygienic issues when menstruating.22

The report launches a new celebrity “victim”: the Palestinian female mistreated by the Israeli male. The silence on honor killings, discriminatory laws, and rampant domestic violence perpetrated by the sexist, chauvinist, abusive Palestinian men who sully their own inequitable society, is deafening.

Also missing in action? The word “terrorism” is nowhere to be found. Palestinian perpetrators have vanished. Hamas or Palestinian Islamic Jihad never appear.

There is one passing remark that Palestinian demonstrators “threw…on some occasions Molotov cocktails toward Israeli forces.”23 However, it turns out that was just “in reaction to” Israeli evil-doers, and nobody was hurt in the throwing towards.

Not mentioned: Palestinian rocket and mortar attacks, suicide bombings, incendiary kites, pipe bombs, small arms fire, arson, vehicular attacks, assaults, grenades, IED’s, sniper fire, anti-tank fire, anti-aircraft fire, kidnappings, stabbings, rape, torture, stoning and beheading.

In the only other throw-away line on Jewish victims, the report refers to the years 2000 to 2007 this way: “the Commission acknowledges the significant detrimental impact of armed attacks and security incidents.”24 “Detrimental impact” was how they described the Jews blown apart in the Palestinian suicide-bombing reign of terror. Not as a human rights violation.

The report ends with conclusions and recommendations, that take the assault on human decency to the next level.

The inquisitors advocate that Israelis be hunted down, prosecuted and jailed for crimes against humanity by the International Criminal Court (ICC) – for the Nazi-like crimes of “persecution” and the “transfer of populations” (knowing full well that the latter meant transfer to the death camps).25

On the other hand, they couldn’t name a single Palestinian crime worth prosecuting.

The list of recommendations is directed only at “the Government of Israel,” the ICC Prosecutor, various UN bodies, and member states.26 And not one recommendation is made to Palestinian authorities.

And last, but not least, Americans should be under no illusions that they are safe from this toxic international pogrom.

The report demands that the International Court of Justice, the UN’s World Court, be instrumentalized to manufacture duties “of third states” to chase after alleged criminal Israelis.27

The final paragraph of this masterpiece of modern antisemitism announces just how far the spider is now casting the web. In kitchen-sink legalese, the inquiry demands that UN member states start “investigating and prosecuting persons suspected of committing or otherwise aiding and abetting or assisting in the commission or attempted commission of crimes.”28

What crimes? Crimes in the eyes of the very men and women committing, aiding, abetting and assisting the criminal enterprise of destroying the Jewish state and decimating its inhabitants.

* * *

  • Thank you to Sarah Willig, J.D., for her excellent research.
  • An earlier version of this paper was published by the Jewish News Syndicate.

* * *

Notes

1 The “inquiry’s” full title is: “Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and Israel.”

2 “Ensuring respect for international human rights law and international humanitarian law in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and in Israel,” UN Human Rights Council Resolution A/HRC/RES/S-30/1, https://undocs.org/A/76/7/Add.30, adopted on May 27, 2021, by a vote of 24 in favor, 9 against, with 14 abstentions. For further background on the Inquiry see: Anne Bayefsky, “The Newest Anti-Israel UN Action Must Be Challenged – Now,” The Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, December 20, 2021, https://jcpa.org/article/the-newest-anti-israel-un-action-must-be-challenged-now/

3 “Report of the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and Israel,” UN General Assembly, A/77/328, issued October 20, 2022, https://undocs.org/en/A/77/328

4 See the “inquiry members,” Human Rights Voices, http://www.humanrightsvoices.org/pillays-pogrom/the-inquiry-members/

5 “Ensuring respect for international human rights law and international humanitarian law in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and in Israel,” UN Human Rights Council Resolution A/HRC/RES/S-30/1, May 27, 2021, https://undocs.org/A/76/7/Add.30; Oral Statement of programme budget implications arising from draft resolution A/HRC/S-30/L.1 of the Human Rights Council, September 29, 2021, https://hrcmeetings.ohchr.org/HRCSessions/SpecialSessions/30session/Documents/HRC_S30_L1%20Oral%20Statement_final.docx; Revised estimates from resolutions and decisions by the Human Rights Council at its forty-sixth, forty-seventh and forty-eighth regular sessions, and at it thirtieth, thirty-first and thirty special sessions: Thirty-first report of the Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions on the proposed programme budget for 2022, UN General Assembly, A/76/7/Add.30, December 15, 2021, https://undocs.org/A/76/7/Add.30

6 “Report of the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and Israel,” UN Human Rights Council, A/HRC/50/21, June 7, 2022, https://undocs.org/en/A/HRC/50/21; for further commentary on the report see: Anne Bayefsky, “The U.N. Commission of Inquiry: An Exercise in Historical Revisionism,” Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, June 8, 2022, https://jcpa.org/article/the-un-commission-of-inquiry-an-exercise-in-historical-revisionism/; Anne Bayefsky, “The Latest U.N. Commission of Inquiry on “Occupied Palestinian Territory” Is an Inquisition,” Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, June 27, 2022, https://jcpa.org/the-latest-un-commission-of-inquiry-on-occupied-palestinian-territory-is-an-inquisition/

7“ID (cont’d): Commission of Inquiry on OPT – 3rd Meeting, 50th Regular Session of Human Rights Council,” UN Webcast, June 14, 2022, https://media.un.org/en/asset/k1q/k1qtlzmbs2

8 See for original podcast: https://mondoweiss.net/2022/07/the-un-is-investigating-the-root-causes-of-violence-between-israelis-and-palestinians/; See for unofficial transcript of interview: https://hrvoices.org/assets/attachments/articles/Mondoweiss_Podcast_Episode_39_UN_Investigates_Root_Cause_Violence_Israelis_and_Palestinians_July_25_2022.docx; For more details of the scandal see: Anne Bayefsky, “The U.N. Human Rights Council’s “Commission of Inquiry” Goes Openly Antisemitic,” Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, August 1, 2022, https://jcpa.org/article/the-un-human-rights-councils-commission-of-inquiry-goes-openly-antisemitic/

9 See for instance: “Judge Navi Pillay; Former UN High Commissioner on Human Rights,” YouTube video posted by Africa4Palestine, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nF61qfb5J-k, December 14, 2017; See for further details on Pillay: http://www.humanrightsvoices.org/pillays-pogrom/the-inquiry-members/

10 “Letter from Chair of the COI on the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and Israel to UN Human Rights Council President,” July 28, 2022, https://media.un.org/en/asset/k1q/k1qtlzmbs2

11 “Letter from President of HRC to the Chair of the COI on the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and Israel,” July 29, 2022; https://hrcmeetings.ohchr.org/PresidencyBureau/BureauRegionalGroupsCorrespondence/Correspondence/Letter%20from%20President%20of%20HRC%20to%20the%20Chair%20of%20the%20COI%20on%20the%20OPT,%20including%20East%20Jerusalem,%20and%20Israel.pdf; Comments by the Spokesperson for the United Nations Secretary-General Regarding Remarks By Miloon Kothari, Daily Press Briefing by the Office of the Spokesperson for the Secretary-General, August 1, 2022, https://press.un.org/en/2022/db220801.doc.htm

12 “Code of Conduct for Special Procedures Mandate-holders,” Annex (Articles 3 (a), 3(e), 5, 8, 13(b)), UN Human Rights Council Resolution A/HRC/RES/5/2, June 18, 2007, https://ap.ohchr.org/documents/E/HRC/resolutions/A_HRC_RES_5_2.doc; “United Nations Human Rights Council: Institution-building,” Annex, II. Special Procedures, A. Selection and appointment of mandate-holders, Article 39, UN Human Rights Council Resolution A/HRC/RES/5/1, June 18, 2007, https://ap.ohchr.org/documents/E/HRC/resolutions/A_HRC_RES_5_1.doc

13 “Report of the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and Israel,” UN General Assembly, A/77/328, issued October 20, 2022, https://undocs.org/en/A/77/328, pp. 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23

14 “They come at night when we are asleep…They provoke us with very harsh insults: ‘We will deprive you of the land and burn and expel you…’” “Report of the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and Israel,” UN General Assembly, A/77/328, issued October 20, 2022, https://undocs.org/en/A/77/328, p. 18.

15 “My daughter and I were going out one day and when we were crossing the Wadi al-Ghrus checkpoint, the soldiers told me my daughter had metal on her. They said it was in her bra and they wanted to check it…I refused…and in the end they refused to allow us to pass.” “Report of the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and Israel,” UN General Assembly, A/77/328, issued October 20, 2022, https://undocs.org/en/A/77/328, p. 19

16 “Call for Submissions,” UN website for “The United Nations Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and in Israel,” https://www.ohchr.org/en/hr-bodies/hrc/co-israel/index,

17 Human Rights Voices – Submissions, Human Rights Voices website, https://hrvoices.org/pillays-pogrom/human-rights-voices-submissions/; See for further details: Anne Bayefsky, “The U.N. Commission of Inquiry: An Exercise in Historical Revisionism,” Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, June 8, 2022, https://jcpa.org/article/the-un-commission-of-inquiry-an-exercise-in-historical-revisionism/;

18 “Commission of Inquiry on the Occupied Palestinian Territory – Press Conference: Presentation of Human Rights Council report,” June 14, 2022, UN Webcast, https://media.un.org/en/asset/k1u/k1ukz5cf2s

19 “Report of the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and Israel,” UN General Assembly, A/77/328, issued October 20, 2022, https://undocs.org/en/A/77/328, para. 6

20 “Summary,” “Report of the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and Israel,” UN General Assembly, A/77/328, issued October 20, 2022, https://undocs.org/en/A/77/328, p. 2

21“Report of the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and Israel,” UN General Assembly, A/77/328, issued October 20, 2022, https://undocs.org/en/A/77/328, p. 22

22 “Israel often confiscates water…Women and girls are particularly affected by the shortage of water, as they have additional water-related needs for their hygiene and privacy…”, “Report of the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and Israel,” UN General Assembly, A/77/328, issued October 20, 2022, https://undocs.org/en/A/77/328, para. 71

23 “Report of the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and Israel,” UN General Assembly, A/77/328, issued October 20, 2022, https://undocs.org/en/A/77/328, para. 68

24 “Report of the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and Israel,” UN General Assembly, A/77/328, issued October 20, 2022, https://undocs.org/en/A/77/328, para. 50

25 “Report of the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and Israel,” UN General Assembly, A/77/328, issued October 20, 2022, https://undocs.org/en/A/77/328, para. 86

26 “Report of the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and Israel,” UN General Assembly, A/77/328, issued October 20, 2022, https://undocs.org/en/A/77/328, paras. 91-95

27 “Report of the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and Israel,” UN General Assembly, A/77/328, issued October 20, 2022, https://undocs.org/en/A/77/328, para. 92(a)

28 “Report of the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and Israel,” UN General Assembly, A/77/328, issued October 20, 2022, https://undocs.org/en/A/77/328, para. 95