The Spark

the Voice of
The Communist League of Revolutionary Workers–Internationalist

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.”
— Karl Marx

U.N. Conference on Racism:
Hypocrites of the World

Sep 10, 2001

Delegates of the United States and Israel walked out on the U.N. conference on racism on September 3. Secretary of State Colin Powell said his negotiators could not persuade other delegates to remove criticism of Israeli treatment of Palestinians from conference documents. (Of course, the U.S. was perfectly happy to escape a conference where it had already objected to calling slavery, “a crime against humanity.”)

The rest of the world seems to have no trouble condemning the Israeli treatment of Palestinians, which has amounted to a war–killing, arresting and terrorizing hundreds over the last few months and thousands of Palestinians over the last five decades. (Of course, as we have seen many times, the fine words denouncing such actions are nothing but a dead letter, not worthy of the cost of the paper they are written on.)

While the Israeli government continues its long-standing war on the Palestinian population, the U.S. and Israeli governments pretend they are worrying about whether the Israeli policies should be called “racist” or “Zionist” or “apartheid.”

Of course, the rest of the delegations come from governments just as hypocritical as the U.S. or Israel. The French never heard criticism of their murderous reign in Algeria or Viet Nam. The British don’t accept being rebuked for two centuries of colonial oppression around the globe. Most of the countries in Africa and Asia carry out repression of different ethic groups inside their borders and deny they do it, just as Sudan and Mauritania deny the obvious existence of slavery within their borders. The difference is simply that the U.S., the predominant power in the world, is also the most arrogant in demanding that reality be rewritten to conform to its wishes.

In every country, politicians continue to whip up hysteria against some group or another–no matter if the so-called enemy is described by skin color, ethnic origin, or religious preference. And the resolutions produced by conferences like this one are nothing but pieces of paper which they all are ready to use as toilet paper as soon as they sign them.