‘Hate, Ignorance And Evil’ …The Term Of Herzog When He Denounced An Infamous Resolution


Destined to become Israel’s sixth President,
Chaim Herzog was born in Belfast, Northern Ireland, in 1918, the son of the Chief Rabbi of Ireland. The family lived in Belfast and Dublin and in 1935 moved to Palestine where Yitzhak Herzog became Chief Rabbi in 1937.
In Palestine Chaim served in the Haganah, the Jewish underground, during the Arab Revolt of 1936-38. He then continued his studies at the Government of Palestine Law School in Jerusalem, then Cambridge and London, taking a degree in Law.
At the outbreak of World War II Herzog joined the British Army, serving as a tank commander. He was later involved with intelligence, directing operations in Germany, and becoming head of intelligence in the north of the country.
One of his notable achievements was to identify a captured German soldier as the top Nazi Heinrich Himmler. He was also involved in the liberation of a number of concentration camps, from which he gained first-hand knowledge of the horrors of the Holocaust.
As soon as the war ended, Herzog returned to Palestine and began working for the formation of a separate Jewish state, subsequently created in the UN Partition Plan of 1947. He saw military action again as an officer during the 1948 Arab-Israeli War.
From 1948 until 1950, and later from 1959 to 1962, Herzog was head of the Military Intelligence Branch of the Israeli Defence Force (lDF), and between 1950-54 he was Israeli Defence Attache at the US Israeli Embassy. During the Six-Day War in 1967 he was a military commentator broadcasting on the radio and after Israel had captured the West Bank he became the first Military Governor of that territory.
From 1975 until 1978 he was Israel’s Ambassador to the United Nations. However, it was not until 1981 that Chaim Herzog entered the Knesset as a representative of the Labour Party. In 1983 he was elected the sixth President of Israel, serving two consecutive five-year terms.
His experiences of Nazi atrocities in Europe, and the struggles of the fledgling Jewish homeland during the early years of the State of Israel, help to explain the anger apparent in his 1975 address to the United Nations.
Mr President.
It is symbolic that this debate, which may well prove to be a turning point in the fortunes of the United Nations and a decisive factor in the possible continued existence of this organisation, should take place on November 10. Tonight, thirty-seven years ago, has gone down in history as Kristallnacht, the Night  of the Crystals. This was the night in 1938 when Hitler’s Nazi stormtroopers launched a coordinated attack on the Jewish community in Germany, burned the synagogues in all its cities and made bonfires in the streets of the Holy Books and the Scrolls of the Holy Law and Bible. It was the night when Jewis homes were attacked and heads of families taken away, many of them never return. It was the night when the windows of all Jewish businesses and store were smashed, covering the streets in the cities of Germany with a film of broken glass which dissolved into the millions of crystals which gave that night its name It was the night which led eventually to the crematoria and the gas chamber, Auschwitz, Birkenau, Dachau, Buchenwald, Theresienstadt and others. It was the night which led to the most terrifying holocaust in the history of man .
… I do not come to this rostrum to defend the moral and historical values of Jewish people. They do not need to be defended. They speak for themselves. They have given to mankind much of what is great and eternal. They have done for spirit of man more than can readily be appreciated by a forum such as this one.
I come here to denounce the two great evils which menace society in general and a society of nations in particular. These two evils are hatred and ignorance These two evils are the motivating force behind the proponents of this resolution and their supporters. These two evils characterise those who would drag this world organisation, the ideals of which were first conceived by the prophets of Israel, to the depths to which it has been dragged today.
We are seeing here today but another manifestation of the bitter anti-Semitic anti-Jewish hatred which animates Arab society. Who would have believed in this year, 1975, the malicious falsehoods of the ‘elders of Zion’ would be distributed officially by Arab governments? Who would have believed that we would today contemplate an Arab society which teaches the vilest anti-Jewish hate in the kindergartens? .. We are being attacked by a society which is motivated by the most extreme form of racism known in the world today. This is the racism which was expressed so succinctly in the words of the leader of the PLO, Yassir Arafat, in his opening address at a symposium in Tripoli, Libya: ‘There will be no presence in the region other than the Arab presence … ‘. In other words, in the Middle East from the Atlantic Ocean to the Persian Gulf only one presence is allowed, and that is Arab presence. No other people, regardless of how deep are its roots in the region, is to be permitted to enjoy its right to self-determination.
As I stand on this rostrum, the long and proud history of my people unravels itself before my inward eye. I see the oppressors of our people over the ages as they pass one another in evil procession into oblivion. I stand here before you as the representative of a strong and flourishing people which has survived them all and which will survive this shameful exhibition and the proponents of this resolution.
The great moments of Jewish history come to mind as I face you, once again outnumbered and the would-be victim of hate, ignorance and evil. I look back on those great moments. I recall the greatness of a nation which I have the honour to represent in this forum. I am mindful at this moment of the Jewish people throughout the world wherever they may be, be it in freedom or in slavery, whose prayers and thoughts are with me at this moment.
I stand here not as a supplicant. Vote as your moral conscience dictates to you. For the issue is neither Israel nor Zionism. The issue is the continued existence of this organisation, which has been dragged to its lowest point of discredit by a coalition of despots and racists.
The vote of each delegation will record in history its country’s stand on anti- Semitic racism and anti-    Judaism. You yourselves bear the responsibility for your stand before history, for as such will you be viewed in history. We, the Jewish people, will not forget.
For us, the Jewish people, this is but a passing episode in a rich and event-filled history. We put our trust in our Providence, in our faith and beliefs, in our time- hallowed tradition, in our striving for social advance and human values, and in our people wherever they may be. For us, the Jewish people, this resolution based on hatred, falsehood and arrogance, is devoid of any moral or legal value.