Few men speak on the issue of anti-Semitism more powerfully than Elie Wiesel. A Romanian native, Wiesel survived the Holocaust and stands as a gentle but firm witness to its horrors. He spoke today at the Durban Watch conference in marked contrast to most of the rest of the speakers, whose speeches tended towards denunciations of the UN. Alan Dershowitz was particularly fired up, and perhaps Pajamas TV will break that out into a separate video (they’re streaming it live), because it’s really worth watching.
Wiesel took a more philosophical approach, and in a way, he gave one of the most powerful speeches of the day. Wiesel noted that he was supposed to be one of the original architects of the Durban conference, but once he saw the agenda, he resigned. Wiesel traveled to meet with Kofi Annan and predicted that the entire exercise would become an eruption of anti-Israeli demagoguery and anti-Semitic fervor. After the predictable occurred, Wiesel told the audience that Annan called him and said, “You were right.”
In one of the more moving passages of the speech, Wiesel told us that after the end of the Holocaust he believed that it would take ten generations for anti-Semitism to show its face in public. Instead, the UN is celebrating it in his lifetime. If the Auschwitz example didn’t demonstrate what the end game of anti-Semitism is, Wiesel, wonders, what on Earth would? After watching Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s lunatic rantings today at the UN, I’m not sure what the answer is, either.
My apologies for the interruption of the speech; the camera unexpectedly shut down and had to be restarted.