Congressman Smith: ‘UNRWA schools are breeding grounds for hatred’

Witnesses who testified called for the dismissal of Francesca Albanese, Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Palestine.


The Committee on Foreign Affairs and Global Health on Capitol Hill, led by Congressman Chris Smith (R-NJ), took aim at the United Nations’ long-standing bias against Israel on Wednesday. The focal point of this gathering was the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) and its troubling promotion of antisemitism among Palestinian youth.

Representative Smith delivered a powerful message, highlighting the urgency of addressing this issue. He emphasized the need for the United States and the international community to hold the UN accountable for its actions and to demand an end to these biased practices.

“Recent genocidal atrocities committed by Hamas, including acts of terrorism and indiscriminate missile attacks, are a direct outcome of the unbridled antisemitism fomented and enabled by the United Nations. Israel has an absolute right to defend itself against such cowardly invasions and massacres,” Smith declared.

The hearing, which featured distinguished House representatives, including Rep. Kathy Manning (D-NC), Rep. Joseph Markowitz (R-FL), Rep. Brad Schneider (D-IL), Rep. Susan Wild (D-PA), Rep. French Hill (R-AR), Rep. Mike James (R-MO), and Rep. Joe Wilson (R-SC), sent a resounding message condemning the UN’s consistent singling out of Israel and calling for a shift in the international community’s perspective.

Witnesses who testified included Hillel Neuer, Executive Director of UN Watch, who called for the dismissal of Francesca Albanese, Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Palestine.

Smith told The Jerusalem Post “Recently, Albanese made concerning statements about Israel’s right to self-defense. She argued that Israel has no such right, which is both absurd and dangerous.

Antisemitic hate in UNRWA

“During the hearing, we paid extensive attention to the issue of UNRWA and children being exposed to antisemitic hate. It’s alarming that the United States, under President Joe Biden, contributes $1 billion allocated to UNRWA, despite the fact that the previous administration, led by President [Donald] Trump, had halted this funding, due to concerns about the prevalence of antisemitism within these institutions. These schools are, unfortunately, breeding grounds for hatred.”

Manning pointed out how the UN’s anti-Israel bias undermines prospects for peace in the region and unfairly isolates the Jewish state. Other representatives voiced similar sentiments, stressing the need for fairness and justice in international forums.

Schneider drew attention to the UN’s failure to take action on critical issues, such as the plight of 240 hostages, men, women, and children in Gaza, further highlighting the organization’s shortcomings.

Smith shed light on UNRWA’s role in perpetuating hatred against Jews among Palestinian youth. He referred to reports by UN Watch and IMPACT-SE that document the deliberate hiring of teachers by UNRWA who praise Hitler, glorify terrorist attacks against Israeli children, and spread antisemitic conspiracy theories.

“The United Nations often hides behind the veneer of legitimate criticism of Israel to promote antisemitism. UNRWA, in particular, has been criticized for perpetuating the conflict by fostering hatred of Jews among Palestinian youth through its textbooks, curricula, summer camps, and official media,” Smith stated.

The Orthodox Jewish Chamber of Commerce, represented by its Founder and CEO Duvi Honig, submitted testimony to the Committee on Foreign Affairs Hearing, underscoring the unjust treatment Israel receives at the hands of the UN. Honig highlighted how the UN’s original purpose, to promote global peace and security, has been increasingly undermined by bias against Israel.

“The appointment of Iran to head the UN Human Rights Committee, despite its own human rights violations, while simultaneously condemning Israel for its actions, raises questions about the UN’s commitment to justice,” Honig asserted.

Congressman Smith: ‘UNRWA schools are breeding grounds for hatred’ – The Jerusalem Post (