Archive for the ‘Moynihan’s Moment Book’ Category



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On November 10, 1975, the General Assembly of the United Nations passed Resolution 3379, which declared Zionism a form of racism. After the vote, a lanky man with tousled hair stood to speak. He pronounced his words with the rounded tones of a Harvard professor, but his voice shook with outrage: “The United States rises to declare, before the General Assembly of the United Nations, and before the world, that it does not acknowledge, it will not abide by, it will never acquiesce in this infamous act.”

Daniel Patrick Moynihan, the US Ambassador to the UN, recognized the resolution for what it was: an attack on Israel and democracy motivated by anti-Semitism and anti-Americanism. Moynihan?s heroic defense of the State of Israel made him a celebrity, and won him a US Senate seat that he would keep for 24 years. Yet his effort to block the resolution failed; it even triggered a threat against his life by the head of the UN’s Palestinian delegation.

Moynihan’s Moment tells the dramatic story of Moynihan’s and America’s fight against “Zionism as racism.” It examines world events that led to the drafting of the UN resolution, recounts Moynihan’s political maneuverings to prevent its passage, and traces the effects this historic episode had on the complex US-Israel relationship. Moynihan’s Moment captures a pivotal moment on the international political stage that unleashed rabid anti-Israel sentiment, demonstrated the critical, ongoing need for Israel to defend its right to exist, tapped into Americans’ sense of national pride and outrage at world anti-Semitism, illustrated the strong foundation of Israel’s friendship with the US, inspired a dispirited America, and fostered a confrontational approach to US foreign policy that continues to be tested today.


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