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Congress & the Middle East: House Resolution Expresses Solidarity with Israel at the UN

(June 7, 2005)

By a vote of 409-2, in June 2005 the House of Representatives passed H.Res.282 expressing their solidarity with Israel in its fight against anti-Semitism at the United Nations. The test of the resolution follows:

H. Res. 282

Whereas the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights recognizes that `the inherent dignity and equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family is the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the world';

Whereas United Nations General Assembly Resolution 3379 (1975) concluded that `Zionism is a form of racism and racial discrimination' and the General Assembly, by a vote of 111 to 25, only revoked Resolution 3379 in 1991 in response to strong leadership by the United States and after Israel made its participation in the Madrid Peace Conference conditional upon repeal of the resolution;

Whereas during the 1991 session of the United Nations Commission on Human Rights, the Syrian Ambassador to the United Nations repeated the outrageous `blood libel' that Jews allegedly have killed non-Jewish children to make unleavened bread for Passover and, despite repeated interventions by the Governments of Israel and the United States, this outrageous lie was not corrected in the record of the Commission for many months;

Whereas in March 1997, the Palestinian observer at the United Nations Commission on Human Rights made the contemptible charge that the Government of Israel had injected 300 Palestinian children with HIV (the human immunodeficiency virus, the pathogen that causes AIDS) despite the fact that an Egyptian newspaper had printed a full retraction to its earlier report of the same charges, and the President of the Commission failed to challenge this baseless and false accusation despite the request of the Government of Israel that he do so;

Whereas Israel was denied membership in any regional grouping of the United Nations until the year 2000, which prevented it from being a candidate for any elected positions within the United Nations system until that time, and Israel continues to be denied the opportunity to hold a rotating seat on the Security Council and it is the only member of the United Nations never to have served on the Security Council although it has been a member of the organization for 56 years;

Whereas Israel continues to be denied the opportunity to serve as a member of the United Nations Commission on Human Rights because it has never been included in a slate of candidates submitted by a regional grouping, and Israel is currently the only member of the Western and Others Group in a conditional status limiting its ability to caucus with its fellow members of this regional grouping;

Whereas the United Nations has permitted itself to be used as a battleground for political warfare against Israel led by Arab states and others, and 6 of the 10 emergency sessions of the United Nations General Assembly have been devoted to criticisms of and attacks against Israel;

Whereas the goals of the 2001 United Nations World Conference Against Racism were undermined by hateful anti-Jewish rhetoric and anti-Israel political agendas, prompting both Israel and the United States to withdraw their delegations from the Conference;

Whereas in 2004, the United Nations Secretary General acknowledged at the first United Nations-sponsored conference on anti-Semitism, that: `It is clear that we are witnessing an alarming resurgence of this phenomenon in new forms and manifestations. This time, the world must not--cannot--be silent.';

Whereas in 2004, the United Nations General Assembly's Third Committee for the first time adopted a resolution on religious tolerance that includes condemnation of anti-Semitism and `recognized with deep concern the overall rise in instances of intolerance and violence directed against members of many religious communities . . . including . . . anti-Semitism . . . ';

Whereas in 2005, the United Nations held an unprecedented session to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz concentration camp;

Whereas democratic Israel is annually the object of nearly two dozen redundantly critical resolutions in the United Nations General Assembly, which rarely adopts resolutions relating to specific countries; and

Whereas the viciousness with which Israel is attacked and discriminated against at the United Nations should not be allowed to continue unchallenged: Now, therefore, be it

Resolved, That--

(1) the House of Representatives--

(A) welcomes recent attempts by the United Nations Secretary General to address the issue of anti-Semitism;

(B) calls on the United Nations to officially and publicly condemn anti-Semitic statements made at all United Nations meetings and hold accountable United Nations member states that make such statements; and

(C) strongly urges the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) to develop and implement education awareness programs about the Holocaust throughout the world as part of an effort to combat the rise in anti-Semitism and racial, religious, and ethnic intolerance; and

(2) it is the sense of the House of Representatives that--

(A) the President should direct the United States Permanent Representative to the United Nations to continue working toward further reduction of anti-Semitic language and anti-Israel resolutions;

(B) the President should direct the Secretary of State to include in the Department of State's annual Country Reports on Human Rights Practices and annual Report on International Religious Freedom information on activities at the United Nations and its constituent bodies relating to anti-Semitism by each of the countries included in these reports; and

(C) the President should direct the Secretary of State to use projects funded through the Middle East Partnership Initiative and United States overseas broadcasts to educate Arab and Muslim countries about anti-Semitism, religious intolerance, and incitement to violence.

Sources: Library of Congress