News about the UN, France and England: Israel beware

Tuvia Brodie,

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Tuvia Brodie
Tuvia Brodie has a PhD from the University of Pittsburgh under the name Philip Brodie. He has worked for the University of Pittsburgh, Chatham College and American Express. He and his wife made aliyah in 2010. All of his children have followed. He believes in Israel's right to exist. He believes that the words of Tanach (the Jewish Bible) are meant for us. His blog address is He usually publishes 3-4 times a week on his blog and 1-3 times at Arutz Sheva. Please check the blog regularly for new posts.

Three recent news stories don't appear to have much in common. They're about the UN, France and England. The UN story is about Israel. But the other two?

Consider the three stories: 

The first news item comes from the UN, where Israel Ambassador to the UN, Danny Danon, is working to convince "multiple members" of the UN's Human Rights Council (UNHRC) to walk away from the UNHRC. He's doing this because the UNHRC insists on ignoring human rights violations by dictators around the world while it continuously condemns Israel, a democracy (Shlomo Cesana, "UN budget will suffer unless it stops attacking Israel", israelhayom, June 9, 2017). 

As Danon said, "There are hundreds of thousands of refugees in Syria and human rights are being violated in Iran, Libya, Yemen and North Korea, but the Human Rights Council is obsessed with Israel" (ibid).

Danon has two specific goal for this campaign. First, he wants the UNHRC to cancel its unique-to-Israel annual session that requires UNHRC to find supposed rights violations committed by Israel against 'Palestinians'; and, second, he demands that the UHNRC disband a committee it has formed to create and maintain a database of companies doing business beyond the Green Line--in Jerusalem, Judea-Samaria and the Golan Heights (ibid). 

This database is not benign. It can--and probably will be--used to initiate a boycott campaign against companies doing business in Israel. That boycott isn't human rights. It's economic war against the Jewish Israel. 

Danon wants to persuade certain unnamed UNHRC members to exit the UNHRC if the Council doesn't make these two changes. We'll have to wait to find out how well the UNHRC responds to Danon.

However, the last time someone spoke harshly about how Israel is treated at the UN, the Council attacked Israel (follow US UN Ambassador Nikki Haley's remarks at the UN, and regarding the UNHRC, during the period  February-March, 2017). Will it attack Israel because of Danon's remarks?

The second story is about France. It's about a follow-up election to France's May 7, 2017 presidential election. 

Last month, Emmanuel Macron won the presidency by a 2-to-one margin (66%-33%). Yesterday, in a second election to determine the make-up of France's National Assembly, Macron won again by an even greater margin (Peter Allen, "Macron heading for a landslide as French election polls predict his party will win 445 out of 577 seats - pushing Europe towards a 'hard Brexit'", dailymail, June 11, 2017). 

Macron needed 289 seats to win a majority in the National Assembly. He won 158 seats more than he needed. That means he'll control a whopping 77% of the National Assembly. This suggests that, in theory at least, Macron should be able to pass any legislation he wants. 

That may not turn out well for the Jews of France--or for Israel.

France has a total population of app. 67 million. There are perhaps 460,000 Jews in France. Jews represent some seven-tenths of one-percent of total population.  

It's difficult to say how many Muslims there are in France because, it seems, there's a law that prohibits the official collection of ethnic data (Yves Mamou, "France's Muslim demographic future", gatestoneinstitue, February 20, 2017). (The number of Jews in France comes not from France but from the European Jewish Congress--see "French Jews fear anti-Semitism will destroy community", timesofisrael, January 14, 2013). Nevertheless, estimates for numbers of Muslims in France range from 7-9 percent of total population--between 5-6 million.

It seems safe to say that for every Jew in France, there are at least 10 Muslims. That's an important difference. It tells everyone which population has the greater vote potential. It tells politician which population to curry favor with.

The bottom line for Jews in France--and for Israel--is clear. Jewish and 'Israel' issues won't be a priority for French politicians. That 'favored' po‎sition will go to the growing Muslim population. That can mean only one thing: less pro-Israel and more pro-Palestinian votes in national and international venues.

This Muslim-inspired propensity to support 'Palestine' over Israel will not be good for Israel. The Muslim influence on legislating new laws--and on managing law enforcement--in France certainly won't be good for the Jews of France. 

The third story is about the recent election in England. This story is about a potential Jewish fallout from that election, where Prime  Minister Theresa May lost her majority in the Parliament. On one level, this loss is not politically fatal. She's only 8 seats short of the majority she needs to form a government. She's found 10 seats with an Irish Party called, the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP).

That's good, right? Not to many in England, it isn't. Instead, her failure to keep her majority in Parliament is a sign of political incompetence. After all, she was the one to call for elections. She did that because she felt she could win strongly enough to increase her majority in the Parliament, a result that would increase her influence and her hold on power.

She was wrong. She lost power. Now she pays for that error in judgment.

Consequently, her Party, the Conservatives, called for an emergency session. At this meeting, May apologized repeatedly, profusely, for members of her Party losing their seats because of her (Anushka Asthana, "Theresa May tells Tory MP's: I got us into this mess and I'm going to get us out of it", guardian,  June 12, 2017. 

The fallout element of this story comes from Conservative Party Jewish students in England (Rachel Frommer, "Conservative Jewish students disappointed peers voted for Labour in UK elections, fear 'mainstreaming' of Antisemitism", algemeiner, June 9, 2017). These young Jewish Conservatives are concerned. Too many of their Jewish Conservative friends didn't vote Conservative this year. They voted Labour.

The 'Jewish' problem with Labour is its leader, Jeremy Corbyn. You may have heard about Corbyn. He  and some of his advisors have developed reputations for being anti-Israel, pro-Hamas--and anti-Semitic. 

In this election, Corbyn increased his Party's seats in the Parliament from 230 seats before the election to 262 afterwards. His showing was so strong, he claimed 'victory' (Barney Henderson, "Jeremy Corbyn claims election victory: 'we changed the face of British politics", telegraph, June 10, 2017). 

Part of that 'victory' was reported by the BBC to be due to a high youth turnout that voted specifically for Corbyn ("Election results 2017: England winners and losers". June 9, 2017). That Jewish youth should join that rush to Labour when many Jews feel Corbyn is an anti-Semite doesn't appear to be a positive sign for England's Jews. This seems especially worrisome because Corbyn's strong showing means that his hostile anti-Israel (and possibly anti-Semitic) views will stay in the mainstream (Frommer, ibid). 

England has a population of app 53 million. Of that total, some 269,000--or, app one-half of one percent--are Jews. By contrast, England has app 2,660,000 Muslims, or app five percent of total population.

Put another way, on one level, England has the same problem France has: for every Jew, there are perhaps ten Muslims. While England isn't France, the fact remains that in both countries Jews are vastly outnumbered by a population particularly hostile to them and Israel.

In a way, these three stories are about Israel. Each highlights an anti-Israel obsession. The UNHRC is a hotbed for hate of Israel that, so far, proves stubbornly resistant to all criticism about its animus towards Israel. Now, both France and England empower individuals (Corbyn and Macron) who may push their respective nations to be more supportive of the despots who serve on the UNHRC than to Israel.

Will these developments actually affect Israel? Will they bring harm to the Jews of France and England?  

Stay tuned. This movie has just begun.