António Guterres, the UN’s secretary-general, has described rising anti-Semitism as a ‘multi-headed monster’ of intolerance that’s creating a ‘tsunami of hatred’ across the world, and the UN proclaims ‘anti-racism’ as its defining ideology. But the UN is failing to confront discrimination and violence against Jews — and at times even nurturing it.
The UN special papporteur on racism, E. Tendayi Achiume, ought to be among the leading global voices speaking out against Jew hate. Last year, she called on Bulgaria to stop hate speech and discrimination against the Roma, she urged the Human Rights Council to address abuses against people of African descent and she appealed to world leaders to confront ‘structural forms of racial and ethnic injustice’.
Yet Achiume has a blind spot about one kind of racial and ethnic injustice. When ‘anti-Zionist’ activists descend on Jewish neighborhoods with calls to ‘kill and rape’ Jewish women, and when Jews were targeted by protesters chanting ‘Zionists are terrorists’ at rallies around the world, Achiume says nothing.
She did, though, produce a report on anti-Semitism in 2019. But that only addressed the resurgence of anti-Semitism in the context of ‘neo-Nazi and related intolerance’. This exposes a fundamental flaw in the UN system, one amplified and promoted by influencers, thought leaders, academics and journalists: Jew-hatred can only be acknowledged when it carries a tiki torch. When it comes cloaked in the language of ‘racial justice’, it’s excused or ignored.