George W Bush


The Bush administration pulled out of the U.N. World Conference Against Racism in Durban, South Africa, Monday evening after efforts to soften the anti-Israel language of the conference?s draft summary statement failed. " />
George W Bush


The Bush administration pulled out of the U.N. World Conference Against Racism in Durban, South Africa, Monday evening after efforts to soften the anti-Israel language of the conference?s draft summary statement failed. "/>
August 5, 2015 / 20 Av, 5775
At a Glance
Sections
Sponsored Post


Home » Sections » Magazine » News »

Bush Keeps Promise, Pulls Out of Durban

The Bush administration pulled out of the U.N. World Conference Against Racism in Durban, South Africa, Monday evening after efforts to soften the anti-Israel language of the conference?s draft summary statement failed.

George W Bush


President George W. Bush had promised that the U.S. would leave if it appeared that Israel was being singled out, or, in Bush?s words, if the conference ?picks on? the Jewish state.

By last weekend, it was obvious that the conference wasn?t just ?picking on? Israel, but engaging in what Yossi Sarid, a leading voice on the Israeli Left, called a premeditated political lynching of Israel, Zionism and Judaism.

?Today, I have instructed our representatives at the world conference to return home,? Secretary of State Colin Powell said in a statement issued simultaneously in Washington and Durban, where the conference was in its fourth day.

?I have taken this decision with regret because of the importance of the international fight against racism and the contribution that this conference could have made to it,? he said. ?But following discussions today by our team in Durban and others who are working for a successful conference, and others, I am convinced that it will not be possible.?

?The Bush administration isn?t big on empty symbolism like going to conferences the way Bill Clinton was,? analyst Dan Goure of the Lexington Institute told the New York Post?s Deborah Orin.

?This is an administration,? Goure added, ?that says we?re going to stand by our friends ? like Israel. It isn?t being unilateralist or going it alone. It?s a clear statement about how we will relate to others.?

In Jerusalem, Israeli Foreign Minister Shimon Peres announced Israel?s decision to leave, explaining that there was no chance to change what he termed the ?ugly and insulting decision? drafted by the conference.

?We have instructed our delegation in Durban to come back home,? Peres said at a news conference timed to coincide with the U.S. announcement. ?We regret very much the very bizarre show in Durban. An important convention that?s supposed to defend human rights became a source of hatred. We were portrayed in an insulting and baseless manner as a colonial nation.

?The Durban conference is a farce,? he added, expressing gratitude to the 43 states that opposed the ?one-sided decision? of the Arab and Muslim leagues. ?These countries,? Peres said, ?saved world respect from deteriorating to the low level of lies and incitement.?

Peres blamed the Arab League in particular, saying it had led a concerted effort to single out Israel and blame it in unacceptable terms for the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

At the conference, Israel was accused of everything from being a ?racist apartheid state? to ethnic cleansing, war crimes and even genocide. In addition, pro-Palestinian delegates at the forum managed to remove a passage from the draft text that condemned the firebombing of synagogues and armed assaults against Jews.

In his address, Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasir Arafat called Israel?s ?occupation? of Judea, Samaria and Gaza ?a racist colonialist plot; a plot of aggression, of uprooting, of taking over the land and taking over all that his holy, especially places that are holy to Muslims and Christians, in Bethlehem, among other places.?

For the Palestinians, Durban has essentially been home turf: they have enjoyed the strident backing of the Muslim states and the large Muslim community in South Africa.

Israel and American sources said that an ?alternative to the Durban conference,? where leading intellectuals and leaders will voice support of Israel, is being planned, and is likely to take place in Jerusalem in the next few weeks.

Diplomats had desperately tried to find middle ground between Israel and the U.S., both of which objected strongly to the draft declarations, and Arab and Muslim states, which wanted Israeli actions in the West Bank and Gaza Strip condemned.

?It seems that despite extraordinary efforts by the American government reaching back many months, it will prove impossible for the American delegation to continue participating at this conference,? Congressman Tom Lantos, a U.S. delegate, said.

?Those who have made it their goal to hijack the conference for their propaganda purposes apparently have shown in the course of the day a degree of rigidity and unwillingness to compromise,? he told reporters.

Former prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu and former justice minister Yossi Beilin criticized the decision to leave Durban, saying Israel should have kept a delegation there to respond to the anti-Israel rhetoric and explain why Zionism is the opposite of racism.

?Imagine what would have happened if then-Israeli ambassador to the U.N. Chaim Herzog had come home instead of tearing the U.N. resolution equating Zionism with racism to shreds?? Netanyahu said.

In an eloquent statement denouncing the conference, Foreign Minister Peres gave reporters a quick but detailed history lesson.

?In 53 years since the establishment of Israel,? Peres said, ?we were attacked five times with an attempt to overpower us and to bring an end to the State of Israel. We stood alone, outnumbered, outgunned, and we defended our lives.

?We won all the wars, we won a lot of territories. We gave back the territories, the water, the oil to Egypt. We gave back the land, the water to Jordan. We have withdrawn unilaterally from Lebanon in accordance with U.N. Resolution 425.

?We offered to the Syrians an exchange of land for peace. We have offered the Palestinians something that no Arab country did before us, because the West Bank and the Gaza Strip were under Arab control. We offered them an independent state. We offered them to withdraw from most of the territories. We offered them a position in Jerusalem. They have rejected it. Instead, there was the intifada, and even today there were four bombs in Jerusalem, the capital of Israel.?

Peres thanked the U.S. for taking ?an extremely courageous position to make the world look more responsible, more balanced, more truthful.?

Peres also thanked the other countries that took a clear position against this ?unbelievable attempt to smear Israel with false colors,? among them Russia, India, the members of the European Union, the countries of East Europe, most of the countries in Latin America and many countries in Africa.
? Additional reporting by Avraham S. Lewin and JPFS.

About the Author: Jason Maoz is the Senior Editor of The Jewish Press. He can be contacted at jmaoz@jewishpress.com.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Bush Keeps Promise, Pulls Out of Durban”

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
Iran's Bushehr nuclear facility.
Nearing Double Digits in the Democrat Defection from Bad Iran Deal
Latest Sections Stories
South-Florida-logo

An impressive group of counselors and staff members are providing the boys and girls with a summer of fun and Torah learning and a lifetime of wonderful memories.

South-Florida-logo

Rabbi Sam Intrator recently led a summer program in Williams Island, located in Aventura. The event focused on how to find spiritual joy in Judaism. The rabbi cited biblical and Talmudic teachings, ancient Temple rituals, and the words of prayers to establish the role that love and positive thinking have in Torah values. Rabbi Intrator […]

South-Florida-logo

The Iranian deal was sealed on July 14, four and a half months after Netanyahu’s visit. The details of the agreement were shocking and worse than anyone had imagined.

There are so many toys available for newborn to age 5, but how do you choose?

In 1939, with life getting harder for Jews, she and several friends decided it was time to make aliyah, and applied at the Palestina Amt for permits.

I am not sure how many of you readers have had this experience, but I did and it truly tested the limits of my sanity!

Aside from my own 485-page tome on the subject, Red Army, I think Jamie Glazov did an excellent job at framing things in United in Hate: The Left’s Romance with Tyranny and Terror.

We studied his seforim together, we listened to famous cantorial masters and we spoke of his illustrious yichus, his pedigree, dating back to the famous commentator, Rashi.

Jews who were considered, but not ultimately selected, include Woody Allen, Saul Bellow, David Ben-Gurion, Marc Chagall, Anne Frank, and Barbra Streisand.

More Articles from Jason Maoz
Assemblymember Bichotte speaking in the New York State Assembly.

The bills I’m proud to have sponsored are less controversial, more responsive to yeshiva and parochial school parents, and were gaining traction in the Assembly until the negative campaign began…

Zechariah Schwarzberg, z”l

Though intimately acquainted with mankind’s darkest side, he never lost his faith&love in God or man

Some of the president’s defenders took to arguing that the overwhelming majority of German military personnel interred in Bitburg were regular Wehrmacht soldiers who died on the battlefield and likely were not involved in atrocities against civilians.

Note also the response to the speech by the top Democrats in the House and Senate, Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid, both of whom have been outspoken in their criticism of Netanyahu’s upcoming visit.

The New York State comptroller manages the state’s $180.7 billion pension fund, audits the spending practices of all state agencies and local governments, oversees the New York State and Local Retirement System, reviews the New York State and City budgets, and approves billions in State contracts and spending.

While not all criticism of Israel stemmed from anti-Semitism, Podhoretz contends the level of animosity towards Israel rises exponentially the farther left one moved along the spectrum.

When you grow up in a home where your parents went through what my parents went through, you realize that life has to be meaningful. You have to be there for other people.

“It’s a lousy column and a dishonest one,” Halberstam wrote. “So close it. Or you will end up just as shabby as Safire.”

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/sections/magazine/news-magazine/bush-keeps-promise-pulls-out-of-durban/2001/10/05/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: