AROUND THE PERIMETER: Hudson Institute Brings Heavy Hitters to Bat Against Durban

JointMedia News Service spotlights smaller groups doing important work often overlooked by larger “mainstream” organizations in monthly “Around the Perimeter” features.

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Anne Bayefsky of the Hudson Institute speaks at "The Perils of Global Intolerance" conference Sept. 22, organized by Hudson and Touro College to counter Durban III. Credit: Enrique Cubillo/85 Photo Productions Inc.

Mike Huckabee. Elie Wiesel. Alan Dershowitz. Ed Koch. Those were just some of the names in a stunning lineup of about 20 speakers who responded to the UN’s anti-semitism at “The Perils of Global Intolerance” conference in New York last week. Conference chair Anne Bayefsky said it actually “wasn’t hard to attract them at all.”

“If you build it they will come,” Bayefsky said in an interview with JointMedia News Service. “They came, because they understood the danger of the continuing demonization of Israel that goes unanswered and they weren’t prepared to take it anymore.”

Bayefsky is a senior follow at the New York City-based Hudson Institute, which organized the conference along with Touro College. According to its mission statement, Hudson is a “nonpartisan policy research organization dedicated to innovative research and analysis that promotes global security, prosperity, and freedom.”

Founded in 1961 by futurist Herman Kahn, Hudson’s broad research agenda includes global affairs, science and technology, law, culture, public policy, and the economy, among other areas. During UN week, the institute narrowed down its focus to spotlighting the disregard for Israel’s rights—and human rights in general—at the international body.

“For too long, Israel has been excluded, and we’re trying to open the avenues to understand human rights properly, and in particular, that equality for the majority is only built when they recognize the equality of the few, and that’s what’s missing in today’s modern international human rights environment,” Bayefsky said.

Bayefsky runs a Hudson initiative called Eye on the UN (www.eyeontheun.org),which she said “has for many years followed closely developments at the United Nations.” The project’s webpage was updated daily with the latest international developments during UN Week, including 10 times on Sept. 22—the same day Hudson was holding its conference. Talk about multitasking.

Hudson and Touro, Bayefsky said, are taking leadership roles in “combating anti-Semitism and taking a good, close look at the modern United Nations and its implications for the welfare not only of Israel but also of the United States and the free world as we know it.”

Visit www.hudson.org for more information on the institute.

Jacob Kamaras is the Editor-in-Chief of JNS.

Posted on September 27, 2011 and filed under Around the Perimeter.