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Durban II Doldrums

Michael Sharnoff

The second Durban Conference will take place in Geneva, Switzerland next month. As Canadian Member of Parliament and law professor Irwin Cotler observed (along with countless others), the offensive language used during the first conference in 2001 was outrageous and inflammatory, equating Zionism with racism and Israel with apartheid.

This year’s conference has already turned away participants. Holland, Denmark, Germany, Belgium, and Italy have expressed reservations about their attendance this year. The U.S., Canada, and Israel will boycott next month’s conference.

While Arab and Muslim representatives at the Durban conference freely spew anti-Semitic rhetoric, they condemn any criticism of Islam, equating it with “Islamophobia.” (For more, see this video.) As Mark Dubowitz noted in the fall 2008 issue of inFOCUS some Muslim actors now seek to make legitimate criticism of Islam a criminal offense.