The Obama administration says that it will boycott a United Nations conference on racism next week due to concerns over anti-Israel and anti-West bias in the meetings final document. The United States will join Canada and Israel in the boycott. Read more, see photos and video.

Obama boycotts UN 2

Obama Boycotts UN

President Obama’s administration had lobbied the World Conference on Racism, but were unsuccessful in their attempts to get the committee to change their format. Obama had very much wanted to attend, but I commend him for boycotting the ridiculous conference which will most likely turn into an Israel bashing session. From the Jewish Telegraphic Agency:

“The United States is deeply grateful to the many country delegations, including Russia as chair, and senior United Nations officials who have worked steadfastly to improve the review conference outcome document and to re-focus the Durban Review Conference squarely on racism and discrimination,” the statement said. “We applaud the progress that has been made. The current document is significantly improved compared with prior versions, which is an accomplishment for all who aim to build a world free of every form of discrimination.“

The United States, Canada, and Israel all will be staying home and not participating in the meeting due to the fear that the conference will turn into a heated debate about Israel. Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who has stated that Israel should cease to exist, will be attending. The same conference in 2001 turned into just that, a debate about Israel.

The conference is to be held in Geneva, Switzerland April 20-25; with more nations threatening to boycott. Australia and the European Union are seriously considering not taking part in the meetings. Germany says that they do not want to participate in a one sided debate over the middle-east conflict between Palestine and Israel; specifically what the 2001 meetings in South Africa were.
The American-Israel Public Affairs committee, were happy with the decision saying:

“President Obama’s decision not to send U.S. representation to the event is the right thing to do and underscores America’s unstinting commitment to combating intolerance and racism in all its forms and in all settings,” it said in a statement.

President Obama has made some very questionable decisions concerning Israel since taking office, but I have to admit, boycotting the United Nations conference on racism is a step in the right direction for the American and Israeli relationship. Kudos to Canada and Sweden as well.

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