A Man Named Lemkin and Iran


raphael-lemkinBy Benjamin Lemkin, Esq.

I made aliya in 1992 and my father was a first cousin of the famed international lawyer, Raphael Lemkin, who coined the word “genocide” and drafted the Genocide Resolution which was adopted by the United Nations a few years after the murder of six million Jews due to Lemkin’s intensive lobbying.

Lemkin, like my father, was from Poland and lost the vast majority of his family to the German-organized genocide. As a result of his idealism, my cousin died a pauper. In fact, my father (who resembled him) had to pay for his funeral and was one of few who attended.

Decades later, Lemkin’s name has become more and more pronounced in human rights’ circles and a few years ago a play was even produced called “Lemkin’s House,” to which my family was invited.

Today, the United Nations will be organizing a program called “From Prevention to Protection:The UN Genocide Convention 65 Years On,” which will also be honoring Raphael Lemkin. Here is the link to the advertizing for the event at the U.N. today: http://www.un.org/en/holocaustremembrance/2013/genconvention.shtml.

My family in the U.S. has been invited and my nieces have been asked to present flower bouquets to the Secretary General of the U.N., Ban Ki-Moon, who will appear at the event.

This is an opportunity for the leadership of the State of Israel to send a message to the U.N.  Lemkin, were he to be alive today, would certainly have expected the U.N. to enforce the Genocide Convention vis-a-vis Iran, whose leaders have long expressed clear genocidal intentions in the form of calling for the liquidation of Israel.

It should be recalled that Lemkin had considered the Arab riots against Jews in the 1920s and 1930s to have been genocidal in nature. How much more so would Lemkin,whom the U.N. is honoring, have considered today’s Iran to be in flagrant and utterly clear violation of the Genocide Resolution which  he drafted.

It is hypocritical and morally indefensible for the U.N. to honor Raphael Lemkin while not living up to his legacy regarding genocide in the making.

{Benjamin Lemkin, Esq. – Matzav.com Newscenter}


  1. Hey would you expect that an Islamic organization like tr un, should adhere to any moral decencies. Total fantasy. Maybe Shimon Peres will fall for it