That Ahmadinejad Walkout 28

On Newsnight last night, Jeremy Paxman challenged UK Ambassador Peter Gooderham and obtained the information that the walkout had been agreed upon by EU states before the session, ie before they heard a word Ahmadinejad had said. They did not have a text in advance.

This stunt was a combination of the pompous and the immature that had Miliband written all over it.

Watching Paxman torment Gooderham I was reminded of a posting by Cipriano on Harry’s Place yesterday:

this is why stories surface regularly about the low quality of FCO people these days, mindless apparatchiks for the most part

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28 thoughts on “That Ahmadinejad Walkout

  • Tom Welsh

    I find it hard to understand all this self-righteous indignation about the iniquity of calling Israel racist, when – AFAIK – the Israeli constitution has racist provisions written all through it.

    “There are none so blind as those who will not see”.

  • abualshawareb

    Walkout was staged.

    leaflets were distributed by some Jewish organizations urging people to walkout when Ahmadinejad start his speech. according to Aljazeera reporter.

    here is a picture of the leaflet from the Aljzaeera report

  • abualshawareb

    Walkout was staged.

    leaflets were distributed by some Jewish organizations urging people to walkout when Ahmadinejad start his speech. according to Aljazeera reporter.

    here is a picture of the leaflet from the Aljzaeera report

  • Max


    I couldn’t find it, but the conference website is here:

    Not much in the news about this item:



    UN human rights chief shocked by US withdrawal from Durban Review Conference, urges States to focus on racism not politics

    _19 April 2009_

    GENEVA – The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay said Sunday she deeply regretted the decision by the United States not to attend the anti-racism Durban Review Conference which starts on Monday 20 April, and urged other states to maintain their commitment to the draft outcome document that they agreed only last Friday to forward to the conference for consideration and adoption.

    “I am shocked and deeply disappointed by the United States decision not to attend a conference that aims to combat racism, xenophobia, racial discrimination and other forms of intolerance worldwide,” the High Commissioner said. “A handful of states have permitted one or two issues to dominate their approach to this issue, allowing them to outweigh the concerns of numerous groups of people that suffer racism and similar forms of intolerance to a pernicious and life-damaging degree on a daily basis all across the world, in both developed and developing countries. These are truly global issues, and it is essential that they are discussed at a global level, however sensitive and difficult they may be.”

    The United States statement announcing it would not attend next week’s Durban Review Conference nevertheless recognized and applauded the significant progress that had been made over the past few weeks, culminating in Friday’s revised text that all the states attending a Preparatory Committee agreed to forward to the main conference for consideration and approval.

    The US statement cites, as its main stumbling block, the current text’s reaffirmation of the Durban Declaration and Programme of Action (DDPA), the outcome document agreed by consensus at the end of the 2001 World Summit against Racism in Durban, South Africa – but not agreed by the US or Israel which had both left the Conference before it reached its conclusion.


    Was the Ahmadinejad speech walkout used to disguise the fact that the US were not in attendance?

  • max

    From Hindustan Times article of today, here:

    Even before Ahmadinejad spoke, the conference was boycotted by the US, Canada, Israel, Germany, Australia, Italy, the Netherlands and New Zealand. The major objection was that the proposed final document for countering worldwide racism unfairly singled out Israel and threatened freedom of speech.

    The Geneva gathering was a follow-on to the 2001 conference in Durban, South Africa, which was boycotted by Washington and Israel (who had both left the Conference before it reached its conclusion) over concerns of an anti-Israeli slant.

  • Chuck Unsworth

    I think it’s perfectly OK to agree tactics prior to any meeting, but if the agreement is to walk out no matter what is said then that is wrong. The question is what was the justification for Gooderham’s actions.

    He should have been asked what it was in the speech which was so objectionable – and whether he would advocate others doing the same if they objected to, say, the content of Brown’s speeches. If he does concur then we can expect to see empty auditoria come a General Election.

  • eddie

    Well I don’t think the mad President was going to say how much he liked the Jews, so given his previous nutty pronouncements I think a pre-planned walkout was a safe bet, don’t you? This is a man who has stated that there are no Gay people in Iran. It’s all electioneering on his part.

  • Anonymous

    The full text of the the 2001 Durban Declaration and Programme of Action (DDPA) document, the document that the US & Israel amongst others, objected to.

    Israel & Palestine are mentioned in just 2 of the 219 clauses (over 61 pages):


    We are concerned about the plight of the Palestinian people under foreign

    occupation. We recognize the inalienable right of the Palestinian people to self-determination

    and to the establishment of an independent State and we recognize the right to security for all

    States in the region, including Israel, and call upon all States to support the peace process and

    bring it to an early conclusion;


    As for the situation in the Middle East, calls for the end of violence and the swift

    resumption of negotiations, respect for international human rights and humanitarian law, respect

    for the principle of self-determination and the end of all suffering, thus allowing Israel and the

    Palestinians to resume the peace process, and to develop and prosper in security and freedom;

    hardly objectionable stuff

  • Johan van Rooyen

    OK, here’s what is probably a pretty comprehensive account of the speech – unfortunately it’s in rather bad English but it is comprehensible. I’m taking the liberty of quoting it in full as the link is extremely slow.

    Monday 20 April 2009 – 19:10

    President in the int’l Durban Reviwe Conference:

    Zionists’ advantage taking of int’l political means should end

    President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on Monday called for fundamental change in the infrastructure of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) and questioned the legitimacy of the right to veto.

    President Ahmadinejad made the remarks at the International Durban Review Conference (Durban 2) in Geneva on Monday.

    The Iranian president also called for change in the monetary and financial system of the world.

    It was among the grave responsibilities of intellectuals, scientists and officials of the world to play their historical role at this sensitive juncture, he said.

    Capitalism like Communism had a wrong concept of the world and its development and tries to impose its will on the world people while merely pursuing materialistic goals rather than justice, freedom, brotherhood, affinity and kindness, he said.

    All should take proper lessons from such developments and this can be attained through collective contribution of governments and nations round the globe.

    Ahmadinejad: UNSC had given Zionists liberty to commit crimes

    President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad told the International Durban Review Conference (Durban II) that United Nations Security Council (UNSC) had in the past 60 years supported the occupier Zionist regime and given it the liberty to commit any crime.

    Addressing the participants at the international meeting on racism in Geneva, he questioned the right to veto, wondering which logic underlies such a right. “With which human value does it comply? Is it compatible with justice, equality and human dignity?” he asked.

    Referring to the fact that UNSC is the top-most source regarding international peace and security, he questioned that while legal discrimination prevails and laws are based on force rather than justice, how one can expect justice and peace?

    He complained that a number of western and European governments consider themselves committed to the genocide racists and support them.

    Following World War II, some displaced a nation and moved a number of people from Europe, the US and other countries to their land under the pretext that the Jews were victimized, and established a totally racist regime in the occupied lands, he said.

    Ahmadinejad also posed a question on the origins of the recent wars such as US invasion on Iraq and Afghanistan and asked whether the reason was other than the self-conceitedness of the then US administration to expand its domination, destroy a lofty culture, eliminate potential and actual threats to Israel from regional countries and loot the Arab country’s energy resources?

    Stating that hegemony and self-conceitedness are the root causes of racism, discrimination and tyranny, the president added that today most of the racists pay only lip service in condemning the phenomena.

    However, when several powerful countries are allowed to take decisions for other countries based on self interests, they can easily trample on all human values and laws.

    Zionists’ advantage taking of int’l political means should end

    IRI President said ignorance was not the major problem related to Zionism, arguing, “In campaign against this malignant phenomenon cultural work does not suffice, since there is also need for ending Zionists’ advantage taking of international political means.”

    President added in his address, “The demand of the nations should be respected, the strong will of the unified governments for uprooting the openly observed racism should be harmonized, and the brave move towards reforming the international relations and apparatus should begin.”

    He reiterated, “Today the human society is faced with a type of racism whose ugly face has became big shame for the global community.”

    Ahmadinejad considered Zionism as the full manifestation of racism, adding, “Zionism’s claim of being religiously inclined is a lie resorting to which it has managed to manipulate the feelings of some ignorant people and to hide its real face.”

    The Iranian political leader said, “What needs to be put in the focus of attention is the main objectives of certain big powers and those that have vast interests around the globe, taking advantage of their economic and political influence and their broad scale media power in vain, relying on the comprehensive backing of the Zionist regime to decrease the ugliness of its existence.”

    The president added, “Beyond doubt all of you have become well aware of the great efforts made by world power centers aimed at deviating the path of this assembly from its real mission’s pathway.”

    Ahmadinejad said, “Unfortunately, the literature of supporting the Zionists that is in other words partnership and being accomplices with them in the crimes they commit, is seen clearly and this increases the responsibility of the representatives of nations at the atmosphere of this anti-human trend and appropriate reforms in relations and behaviors.”

    Ahmadinejad emphasized, “We should know that keeping a broad global potential, such as the one at this assembly, away from the path of achieving it main objectives is equal to the continuation of one of the ugliest, most evident forms of racism.”

    He said that the prerequisite for defending the human rights today was defending the rights of nations to enjoy their free will in major global decision makings free from the influence of certain powers, and in making efforts aimed at reforming the global relations and apparatuses.

    The president said, “Therefore, this gathering is the scene of a great test and the public opinion of the world nations, both today and tomorrow, would judge about us.”

    Ahmadinejad added, “The general conditions of the world moves towards the emergence of major alterations rapidly. The power relations have become very fragile and the sound of breaking of the columns of the global oppression system is heard.”

    Pointing out that the major political and economic structures of the world were on the verge of collapsing, he said, “The political and security crises are deepening and the expanding global economic crisis for which no bright future is predictable reveals the qualitative and quantitative dimensions of the entire developments ahead.”

    The Iranian president said, “I have many times stressed the need for returning from the wrong path that the ruling global management system has been paving and warned about the consequences of delaying such a move.”

    Ahmadinejad added, “Today, too, at this cherished global gathering, addressing you and the entire managers, thinkers and world nations that are thirsty for peace, freedom, advancement and well being, I say that the unjust ruling system in the world is at the end of its (doomed) path.”

    He added, “Reaching the end of this dead-end street was inevitable, because the logic behind this imposed management is oppressive, and because the logic of the collective move of the world is a goal oriented, humane and monotheist move towards perfection; a move that would oppose any move or plan that is not in line with the interests of the nations.”

    Ahmadinejad said that the victory of the righteous over falsehood was the bright future of the mankind and the establishment of a just global systemwas the promise of God and the entire prophets and the shared historic hope of the entire societies and generations.

    He added, “The coming true of such a future is the obvious fruit of the existence of absolute knowledge behind creation and based on the belief of the entire believers in God and the very valuable stand of the human beings.”

    The IRI President reiterated, “The shape taking of the global society, practical possibility of the shape taking of a shared global system and the entry of the thinkers, managers and people of the world for dynamic and fair participation in major, fundamental decision makings is the doomed path of this great move.”

    Ahmadinejad said, “Today there are great scientific, technical and information technology potentials that have provided a shared portion for the learning of the global society and an appropriate path for the manifestation of the shared global system.”


    The IRI President said all that the big world powers care for was their own wealth, their own power and their own nations, while the world nations were worthless in their eyes.

    Ahmadinejad added his address at the International Durban Review Conference in Geneva, “Is not the occupation of Afghanistan among the manifestations of selfishness, racism, discrimination and humiliation of nations?”

    Referring to the global economic crisis, he said, “Who are the officials in charge of the emergence of the global economic crisis? Where did the crisis originate from? From Africa? From Asia? Or did it initiate in the United States followed by Europe and their allies?”

    The president added, “The big powers that have for long periods of time been imposing unjust economic rules and regulations at the global scene have established the economic and monetary system of the world while the others have had no interference, neither in the processes, nor in the policy makings.”

    He added, “They do not even permit their own people, or the other nations to supervise, and by abandoning the observation of ethics, have shaped the rules only in favor of the capitalists.”

    Ahmadinejad said that the big powers have a special definition for the market that deprives many parties of the chance to compete and they also transfer their own problems onto the others, so that today both the crisis and tens of billion of (dollars of) deficits have returned to themselves.”

    Ahmadinejad said, “Today, in order to improve the current situation they have gained no result form injecting hundreds of billion dollars into the companies and the stock exchange markets.”

    The president meanwhile said that the major root for racism was not understanding the reality of man as God’s special and elite creature, adding, “Deviation from the right path of life, ignoring the objectives behind God’s creation of man, and thinking about the philosophy of existence have led to shattering the horizons of man’s view and made him act for fleeting interests.”

    Ahmadinejad reiterated, “These powers by eliminating the equal opportunities broadened the range of their own development so that they became the promoters of the ugliest shape of racism.”

    Our country’s president said, “We need to begin increasing public awareness about the philosophy of mankind’s existence as the means for the campaign against such manifestations, and the prerequisite for that is returning to the observation of the spiritual, and ethical values, and exalted humane merits, which is verily monotheism.”

  • xsdogskin

    The hidden history is that zionism paved the way for world war two and the very holocaust itself.

    Most of the neocon leaders in America who paved the way for the Iraq war are in fact zionists, American citizens having dual Israeli citizenship.

  • xsdogskin

    Zionism is a great evil of not only the gentile but the ordinary Jew also.

    The hidden history is that in clamouring for a Jewish homeland, Zionism paved the way for world war two and the holocaust itself.

    Recently, the neoconserative movement in America, led mostly by zionist Jews with dual American/Israeli citizenship fomented the invasion of Iraq.

    Of course, in an attempt to defend herself from similar Iraq is being vilified and threatened with annihilation from this same zionist scourge on a weekly basis.

  • George Dutton

    “It seems only a Jew can criticize zionism without being called antisemitic”


    Not a lot of people know this but Christians can worship in a synagog.The reason is that Christianity is one of the tribes of Judaism.

  • xsdogskin

    @ George Dutton

    Zionism is not about religion. I mentioned religion in my comment because defenders of zionism accuse its critics of anti-semitism.

  • Craig


    I really don’t know what you mean by Zionism paved the way for the holocaust. The Nazi mass extermination programmes – of which Jews were not the only victims – drew on long taditions of European racism. I don’t think it is tenable or helpful in any way to try to blame Jews for thier own massacre.

  • George Dutton

    “I mentioned religion in my comment because defenders of zionism accuse its critics of anti-semitism.”


    I know.

    What I was pointing out was that is anyone accuses a Christian of “anti-semitism” they can truthfully say…how can that be I am a Jew.

    “Zionism is not about religion”


  • eddie


    1) I am surprised that you allow nutters like xsdogskin to spout their ahistorical, racist nonsense on here. Well done for pointing that out that the Holocaust has nothing to do with Zionism.

    2) The text of the Ahmadinejad speech (released in advance) contained references to Holocaust denial and a Zionist conspiracy that is responsible for most of the evils in the world. The Chomsky worshippers on Media Lens seem to think this is all fair comment but in my opinion, it seems perfectly reasonable that no one should be forced to endure this tosh, especially when it is delivered at a racism conference. It is interesting that the speech itself did not follow the text – whether this was under UN pressure or just the little man playing games I don’t know.

  • Dr Paul

    I read in the Guardian today the bits in Ahmadinejad’s speech that even he felt it politic to omit when he delivered it, as mentioned by Eddie above. Foul stuff, does he really believe this nonsense?

    Zionism is showing by its own actions that it is, in practice if not necessarily in theory, discriminatory. All the Zionists require to get themselves off the hook is some anti-Semitic outburst by a somewhat deranged politico playing to the Middle Eastern and Islamic gallery.

    The Palestinians aren’t going to be helped one inch by such shenanigans.

    Having said that, the walk-out was on a level with student stunt politics; I too can see Boy Miliband’s hand in this, still thinking that he’s grandstanding in a Students Union conference.

    Do we know all of the nations whose delegations walked out?

  • xsdogskin

    The story goes a little bit like this.

    In 1916, Germany had more or less defeated Britain.

    Certain Zionists approached the British government with a proposition. The zionist influence was such that they could persuade the Americans to enter the war. In exchange, they would get Palestine.

    Germany blamed the Jews for the defeat and the reparations imposed.

    The evidence for the above:

    1.The Balfour Declaration of 1917 (dated 2 November 1917)

    2.Up and to entering the war, America had in no way been ‘anti-German’.

    3.Up and to entering the war, Germany

    had been a refuge for Jewish people.

    I am by no means anti-Jewish, however, I do denounce zionism.

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