I can’t figure out which is more nauseating: the pathetic British obsession with the supposed “special relationship”; or the way the UN General Assembly provides despots with a platform for grandstanding. Witness Gadafi’s demented rant yesterday and Iran’s I’m-a-dinner-jacket today. Regarding the latter, there was a good piece by Simon Schama in the FT. Sample:
Not the least repellent aspect of Mahmoud Ahmadi-Nejad’s reiteration, on the eve of the Rosh Hashanah Jewish holiday, that the Holocaust was a lie, was the muffled response to it by western media and governments. Statements were duly forthcoming in Berlin deploring the Iranian president’s speech, while in Washington it was left to Robert Gibbs, the White House press secretary, to do the official tut-tutting.
But it was as though the moral atrocity of Mr Ahmadi-Nejad’s speech was barely worthy of comment being, in the first place, nothing new, and in the second place, incidental to the practical dilemma of how to “engage” with him during his visit to the United Nations this week. Well, one way would be to send Mr Ahmadi-Nejad copies of the 2005 General Assembly resolution repudiating Holocaust deniers and instituting a day of remembrance on January 26 encouraging all member nations to educate their people in the genocide so that future acts of comparable barbarity might not recur.
But then the mere facts of the matter are unlikely to make much impression on a man and a regime lost in paranoid derangement. The pressing issue is how to contain the consequences of anti-Semitic fantasy and recover the moral credentials of a General Assembly that will have listened to someone in such flagrant contradiction of its own resolution…