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Hezbollah’s Calls for Genocide By: David G. Littman
FrontPageMagazine.com | Monday, August 14, 2006

The following brief statement (3 minutes) was delivered on August 11 by David G. Littman, representative of the nongovernmental organization, World Union for Progressive Judaism, to the 2nd Special Session of the Human Rights Council meeting in Geneva. It was circulated widely with WUPJ’s written statement below, also prepared by Littman (A/HRC/S-2/NGO/3).

The Council’s resolution “on the grave situation of human rights in Lebanon” did not even mention Hezbollah by name, and  was so unbalanced that Amnesty International deplored the “members’ focus on their narrow political objectives [which ] resulted in a highly-politicized resolution that muted the Council’s voice by ignoring the violations of one party.” All the European countries and Canada voted against. The U.S. declined to be a Council member.

No Member State took any notice of the appeal by WUPJ, although Hezbollah’s calls for genocide and the Iranian president’s genocide declarations are in defiance of the 1945 UN Charter and the 1948  Genocide Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of Genocide.   

Mr Chairman, on perusing proposed resolution L.1, we felt like the child in the Hans Christen Andersen story who recognised immediately the emperor’s nakedness. Since 1992, the Secretary-General of Hezbollah has been Hassan Nasrallah. Our written statement, entitled: The root causes of ongoing death, destruction and desolation in Lebanon are Hezbollah gives detailed quotes from this man. It is available on the HRC extranet and as General Assembly, HRC document NGO/3. For further reading, we strongly recommend a remarkable article: “Hezbollah’s Strategic Threat to Israel,” by Patrick Devenny, published in the Winter 2006 issue of the Philadelphia Middle East Quarterly (available in the UN library).


The close links between Iran and Hezbollah and its leaders are well documented. Here is one of them:


On 31 December 1999, before tens of thousands at an Al Quds Day rally in Teheran, Iranian supreme leader ‘Ali Khamene’i declared: ‘There is only one solution to the Middle East problem, namely the annihilation and destruction of the Jewish state.” [Patrick Devenny, quoting the Daily Telegraph, 1 January 2000]


This was reiterated by the Ayatollah’s spiritual successor six years before President Ahmadinejed denied the Shoa and demanded that Israel be “wiped off the map.” 


Nasrallah’s remarks on that same day can be found in our written statement, together with his ravings three months later that “The Jews invented the legend of the Nazi atrocities…”


Here is his proposal, made at a graduate ceremony in Beirut on 22 October 2002: “If they [the Jews] all gather in Israel, it will save us the trouble of going after them worldwide.”  [Cf. Wikipedia, H.N.]  


Yesterday, in our News Release, we referred to our written appeal that the 2nd Special Session of the Human Rights Council consider our request to condemn the terrorist Islamic organization Hezbollah for its repeated calls for the genocide of all Jews. Such calls are in defiance of the 1948 Genocide Convention, whose Article III states clearly that “Direct and public incitement to commit genocide” shall be punishable under Article IV. This would also apply to the Iranian president’s repeated calls and to those of Iranian spiritual leader Ali Khamene’i. Such threats are also forbidden under the 1945 UN Charter (Article II, point 4).


It is not enough for the Council to give a passing reference to Hezbollah, it must be condemned for the reasons we have indicated, and for the bloody border war with Israel that it initiated, now firing daily up to 200 missiles indiscriminately at civilian targets.. With its mentors, the Islamic Republic of Iran and Syria, it must take full responsibility for the inevitable destruction of Lebanon.


The time for words and warnings is past, and the time for urgent action against the monstrous evil of terrorism is now. The democratic world must fight for its liberty, for, to quote a great leader [Churchill: 13/5/40]:  You ask, what is our aim? I can answer in a word: It is victory, victory at all costs, victory in spite of all terror, victory, however long and hard the road may be; for without victory there can be no survival.”


Written Statement to the UN by the World Union for Progressive Judaism


General Assembly/Human Rights Council/2nd special session / 11 August 2006 / A/HRC/S-2/ NGO/3


Root causes of ongoing death, destruction and desolation in Lebanon are Hezbollah


1. On 12 July 2006, Hezbollah forces crossed Israel’s international border, killing eight soldiers and taking two into captivity in an unprovoked attack. This was the 20th assault against Israel since May 2000.


2. Hezbollah (“Party of Allah”) currently has 14 seats in the Lebanese Parliament, one of       the largest blocks, and two ministers in the current government of Lebanon. Since 1992, Hassan Nasrallah has been Secretary General of Hezbollah. A few quotations below from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia on the net speak volumes on him: (1)


– “There is no solution to the conflict in this region except with the disappearance of Israel.”


– “Peace settlements will not change reality, which is that Israel is the enemy and that it will never be a neighbor or a nation.”


– “And on this last day of the century,[1999] I promise Israel that it will see more suicide attacks, for we will write our history with blood.”


– “I am against any reconciliation with Israel. I do not even recognize the presence of a state that is called "Israel." I consider its presence both unjust and unlawful.”


– “The Jews invented the legend of the Nazi atrocities...Anyone who reads the Koran and the holy writings of the monotheistic religions sees what they did to the prophets, and what acts of madness and slaughter the Jews carried out throughout history... Anyone who reads these texts cannot think of co-existence with them, of peace with them, or about accepting their presence, not only in Palestine of 1948 but even in a small village in Palestine, because they are a cancer which is liable to spread again at any moment.”


– “If we searched the entire world for a person more cowardly, despicable, weak and feeble in psyche, mind, ideology and religion, we would not find anyone like the Jew. Notice, I do not say the Israeli.”


– “If they [the Jews] all gather in Israel, it will save us the trouble of going after them worldwide.”


3. It is common knowledge that the Islamic Republic of Iran supports this Hezbollah terrorist group with over $100 million per year, and has supplied it with at least 13,000 rockets, and continues to do so. As reported in a recent article: “Participants in a network-sponsored symposium [Al-Manar television] urge that Israel ‘be completely wiped out’ and, ‘just like Hitler fought the Jews,’ the great Islamic nation of jihad should ‘fight the Jews and burn them.’” (2)


4. These statements echo those made by the President of the Islamic Republic of Iran on 26 October 2005, at a Teheran conference on ‘The World without Zionism,’ demanding that Israel be "wiped off the map," adding that "very soon, the stain of this disgrace [Israel] will be purged from the centre of the Islamic world."  He menaced all peacemakers: "Anybody who recognizes Israel will burn in the fire of the Islamic nation’s fury." This is the leadership which is intransigent about Iran’s right to develop a nuclear capability.* Subsequently, in a speech to the Islamic Summit Conference in Mecca (7-8 December 2005) President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad described how "the Islamic world faces many serious problems and challenges," but the major problem was "the presence of the Zionist occupation in the heart of the Islamic region." Its "judicious removal", he predicted, "will pave the way to the appearance of Islam’s power in the successful management of global [matters]." *


5. Such Iranian histrionics are not new and have been repeated annually in Iran since the 1979 Islamic Revolution. However, this is the first time in a public statement since Ayatollah Khomeini’s death in 1989 – soon after he launched his lethal fatwa against Salman Rushdie – that an Iranian president has made a "direct and public incitement" to destroy a Member State of the United Nations, coupled with a reiterated denial of the Holocaust.


6. In recent days Hezbollah has launched up to 200 missiles indiscriminately against the Israeli population – over 2’000 missiles each with thousands of deadly pellets to kill and maim civilians.


7. The 1945 Charter of the United Nations states, under its article 2, that "it’s Members, in   pursuit of the Purposes stated in Article 1, shall act in accordance with the following Principles:

4. All Members shall refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any State, or in any manner inconsistent with the Purposes of the United Nations."

8. Article II of the 1948 UN Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide considers genocide to be those actions "committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such."


9. Any public incitement for the destruction of the State of Israel – and, thereby, of a significant part of its population – qualifies as a call for genocide, whatever political explanations are given. Such direct and public incitement to commit genocide is punishable under the Genocide Convention, which states in its article III: "the following acts shall be punishable: (a) Genocide; (b) Conspiracy to commit genocide; (c) Direct and public incitement to commit genocide; (d) Attempt to commit genocide; (e) Complicity in genocide."

10. Those who drafted the Prevention of Genocide Convention had in mind the long incitement to hatred against the Jews by the Nazi leadership, beginning with Adolph Hitler’s Mein Kampf. Few took the Nazis seriously in the mid-1930s and did not foresee that hate constantly repeated would lead to a systematic genocidal action.

11. The Genocide Convention is not only a framework for civilized public discussion, it also calls for the punishment of violators in its Article IV: "Persons committing genocide or any of the other acts enumerated in Article III shall be punished, whether they are constitutionally responsible rulers, public officials or private individuals."

12. Article VIII envisaged action by any State Member of the United Nations in clear terms: "Any Contracting Party may call upon the competent organs of the United Nations as they consider appropriate for the prevention and suppression of acts of genocide or any of the other acts enumerated in Article III." A direct and public incitement to destroy a State should be seriously considered as "incitement to commit genocide."


13. The time for words and "warnings" is past and the time for urgent action is now. As we have pointed out, only one State needs to call on the United Nations to act under article VIII of the Genocide Convention. If speedy action is not taken, we can be sure that there will be further calls to genocides from Iran, from Hezbollah, acting as a ‘State within a State’ in Lebanon. A rapid UN move – at the Security Council, and even at this special session of the Human Rights Council – could be based on article III (c): "Direct and public incitement to commit genocide" – related to the destruction of the State of Israel, a Member State of the United Nations.


14. We call upon this 2nd Special Session of the Human Rights Council to condemn the actions of Hezbollah, to recognise the actions in contravention of the Genocide Convention and to take appropriate action.




1. http://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Hassan­_Nasrallah


2. Andrea Leven, “Mideast Conflict: Destruction are Hezbollah’s goals.”, IHT, August 9, 2006, p. 6 (this article first appeared in The Boston Globe). See also Michael Rubin, “Eradication First Before Diplomacy,” National Review Online, July 17, 2006. For fuller background data, see the remarkable article by Patrick Devenny, Hezbollah’s Stategic Threat to Israel,” Middle East Quarterly (Philadelphia), Winter 2006; available: http://www.meforum.org/article/806


* For references trans. into English, see MEMRI Special Dispatch No. 1013, "Iranian President at Tehran Conference: 'Very Soon, This Stain of Disgrace [i.e. Israel] Will Be Purged From the Center of the Islamic World and this is Attainable'", 28 October 2005, http://memri.org/bin/articles.cgi?Page=countries&Area=iran&ID=SP101305 ; and  MEMRI, Special Report – N° 39, 5 January 2006: "Iranian Leaders: Statements and Positions" (Part I): Challenges Facing Islam, 1. Iranian President Ahmadinejad, p.13. http://memri.org/bin/opener_latest.cgi?ID=SR3906 ; also two reference to Iranian sources: Joumhourie-e Eslami (Iran) 8 December 2005; IRNA (news agency) 18 December 2005.


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