In 1973 the UN General Assembly declared apartheid a crime against humanity and agreed to the drawing up of a convention on the suppression of the crimes of Zionism and apartheid. The Soviet Union and Guinea were the main sponsors. The convention was ratified after twenty member states – all part of the Soviet-aligned East Bloc and all dictatorships – had signed it. But while no major Western country ever signed it, it high lighted South Africa’s isolation. It was unable to get any country to intercede on its behalf, as the United States did on behalf of Israel when it successfully pushed for the removal of the reference to Zionism as a crime against humanity.