The Honorable Navanethem Pillay
United Nations High Commissioner
for Human Rights
Office of the United Nations High
Commissioner for Human Rights
Palais des Nations
Dear Madam High Commissioner:
We are writing to call on you to take immediate action following an anti-Semitic posting by Richard Falk, UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian territories occupied since 1967, on his personal blog.
On June 29, 2011, Richard Falk posted an anti-Semitic cartoon on his blog which featured a dog eating blood and bones. The dog is wearing a skull cap with a Jewish star and around its body is a shirt with “USA” written on it. The dog is urinating on lady justice clearly conveying that the Jews and Americans care little about what is just and moral.
Madam Commissioner, this cartoon is blatantly anti-Semitic and represents a true transgression on the part of Mr. Falk. While Mr. Falk wrote this blog in his personal, and not professional capacity, the message of hatred in this cartoon directly contravenes the principles of the Human Rights Council and of the United Nations itself. That Mr. Falk has since removed the cartoon from his blog does nothing to change this.
Such an obvious demonstration of anti-Semitism cannot be overlooked, particularly when considered within the larger context of Mr. Falk’s clear and inappropriate politicization of his podium in the past. Mr. Falk has a long record of incendiary and blatantly biased criticism of Israel, including statements comparing Israeli defense measures to Nazi atrocities. In a 2008 BBC interview he defended his comparison of Israel treatment of Palestinians in Gaza as a “Holocaust.”
Such analogies are false, outrageous and -- according to the Working Definition of Anti-Semitism of the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights -- anti-Semitic. Mr. Falk’s other extremist beliefs are well known, particularly his propagating of 9/11 conspiracy theories.
Such biased behavior and clear intolerance is fundamentally against the values and ideals a Special Rapporteur of the Human Rights Council should uphold. We ask that you publicly condemn Mr. Falk for posting this anti-Semitic cartoon, and use your good offices to encourage members of the Human Rights Council to take necessary action and remove Mr. Falk from his position.
Abraham H. Foxman