January 2, 2020
News Press Release

ZOA Supports Wiesenthal Center Naming Germany’s UN Amb. Heusgen to Their 10 Worst Antisemitic Incidents List

Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) President Morton A. Klein and ZOA Chairman Mark Levenson, Esq. released the following statement:

The ZOA supports the Simon Wiesenthal Center (SWC) placing the UN votes and statements by Germany’s Ambassador to the United Nations Christoph Heusgen on the SWC’s “10 worst antisemitic incidents of 2019” list. The SWC cited Heusgen’s 25 anti-Israel UN votes in 2018-2019, and Heusgen’s “outrageous and dangerous statement at the United Nations Security Council in March” (2019) equating “Israeli bulldozers” with “Hamas rockets.”  

There is clearly no comparison between bulldozers engaged in Israel’s lawful construction and demolition activities, which don’t endanger civilians in the least – with Hamas rockets that deliberately target, injure and traumatize Jewish children and other civilians. It is deeply offensive that Germany’s Ambassador made such a comparison.

When naming Heusgen’s activities, SWC noted that “Bild, Germany’s best-selling newspaper accused Heusgen, in an editorial, of “pure malice” against the Jewish State.  Heusgen cast 16 anti-Israel votes at the UN in 2018, abstaining once.  In 2019, he voted for nine anti-Israel resolutions, including one labelling Jerusalem’s holiest sites as “Palestinian Occupied Territory”, while abstaining three times and opposing only one anti-Israel resolution. Chancellor Angela Merkel famously declared in a 2008 speech in Israel’s Knesset: “The security of Israel is never negotiable for me as German Chancellor.”  It seems that Heusgen never got the memo.””

The problem is not only that Heusgen never got the memo.  Heusgen’s antisemitic votes appear to enjoy support from Germany’s chancellor.  Chancellor Angela Merkel recently attempted to defend Heusgen’s antisemitic UN votes by wrongly portraying these anti-Israel votes as representing mere policy differences that don’t interfere with Germany’s supposed “commitment” to Israel. 

In fact, Germany’s UN votes for outrageous UN resolutions are not consistent with a “commitment” to Israel. 

This past November, Heusgen joined human-rights-violating Islamic nations and Communist China to vote for seven multi-part anti-Israel UN resolutions. 

For instance, Germany’s Ambassador Heusgen voted for UN resolutions falsely asserting that Israel engages in “systematic violation of the human rights of the Palestinian people”; falsely calling the existence of Jewish homes a “human rights violation”; outrageously demanding an end to construction of Jewish homes; falsely calling much of the Jewish homeland, including the Jewish quarter in the old city of Jerusalem “Occupied Palestinian Territory”; demanding an end to Israeli security measures to prevent terror attacks; falsely accusing “Israeli occupying forces” of engaging in “acts of terror, provocation, incitement and destruction” against Palestinian civilians; and demanding the release from prison of Palestinian-Arab terrorists who murdered Jews.  (See e.g., UNGA Res. A/C.4/74/L.16 (Nov. 11, 2019).)    

The Bild article referenced by SWC, entitled “He [Heusgen] Always Again Votes Against Israel,” by Filipp Piatov, blasted the German government’s false protestations of “solidarity” with Israel, saying:  “But as long as the German representative, together with Israeli haters, raises his hand in the UN and unilaterally condemns the Jewish state several times a year, the Israel solidarity of the Federal Government and the Foreign Minister remains above all one thing: unbelievable.”

Likewise, Germany’s Jewish Social Democrats, in an open letter published in Jüdische Allgemeine Zeitung, responded to the raft of vicious anti-Israel UN resolutions that Germany voted for in November, saying:  “We are ashamed that Germany has approved these resolutions.  This is a slap in the face of Israel, but also a severe blow to us Jews in Germany.  Antisemitism and Israel-hatred are two sides of a coin that stands for hatred and violence. . . We hereby urge you to put an end to this [anti-Israel voting pattern at the UN] and vote in the future for such votes with no. Such behavior will ensure that the inhibitions continue to decline as it is considered normal to hate Israel.  The mood in the Jewish community has reached a new low – we are counting on you to change that with a clear attitude.”

Germany’s protestations of solidarity with Israel are indeed hollow and downright hypocritical when Germany allows and defends its Ambassador to repeatedly side with Israel’s genocidal enemies to stab Israel and the Jewish people in the back, side and front with one vicious false resolution after another at the United Nations.  

ZOA also notes that Germany and Heusgen obtained their current 2019-2020 seat on the UN Security Council at Israel’s expense.  

Germany obtained its seat by reneging on a reported 2005 deal to permit Israel to obtain the 2019-2020 seat designated for the “West Europe and Other” nations, which include Israel.  Germany has now had six terms sitting on the UN Security Council.  By contrast, Israel has never had a UNSC seat.  (See Germany’s Shameless Power Play Against Israel,” by Benny Avni, NY Post, Mar. 18, 2019.)

ZOA accordingly thanks and supports SWC for naming German Ambassador to the UN Heusgen to SWC’s worst antisemitic incidents list.

Given the increasing, dangerous antisemitism from multiple quarters during the past year, it is of course difficult to name the “10 worst.”  However, SWC did a good job when assembling its “10 worst” list.  In addition to Ambassador Heusgen (#7), SWC’s other top 10 antisemites/antisemitic incidents included: (#1) Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour party; (#2) the terrorists targeting Jews in the U.S. and Germany; (#3) the bigots threatening to murder 89-year-old Auschwitz survivor and Italian Parliament member Liliana Segre; (#4) the French prosecutors who dropped charges against and freed Muslim terrorist Kobili Traore, who mercilessly beat to death Jewish kindergarten teacher Sarah Halimi; (#5) Congresswomen Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar for repeatedly slandering the Jewish people; (#6) the attackers of Jews on the streets of New York; (#8) the BDS groups, etc. that target Jews and the pro-Israel community on college campuses; (#9) neo-Nazis who defaced multiple sites in Denmark and Sweden on the anniversary of Krystallnacht; and (#10) TruNews broadcasts calling Jews “plotters” and “deceivers.”