Tag Archives: Israel

Labour members: why revolt over Starmer’s ‘blind eye’ for refugee rights? Does he have a SEEING eye, in that case?

Still apt: Keir Starmer reckons he was named after original Labour leader Hardie – but can anyone doubt that his illustrious forerunner might have said these words, if confronted with evidence of Starmer’s abysmal performance? [I’m astonished to discover, after using the image on another article, that I need to clarify that he didn’t.]

Don’t get me wrong; it’s great that Labour Party members are challenging Keir Starmer over something.

And his failure to voice a coherent party policy on the people coming across the channel in dinghies – because they aren’t legally allowed to demand asylum in the UK without physically being here – is indeed shameful.

It seems the sticking-point for party members is that Starmer has criticised the government for incompetence in failing to carry out its own policy to deflect refugees away from the UK, because it is not Labour’s job to support the Tories in their cruelties.

And the protesters are right to point out that international law is clear: the migrants’ right to come to the UK for asylum is protected.

But there are so many other issues on which Starmer has disgraced himself – and brought Labour into disrepute.

Where is the party’s condemnation of Israeli’s bombing attack on Gaza, that has been ongoing for, I believe, 11 days by now?

Related to that, where is his apology to all the party members Labour has been persecuting with false allegations of anti-Semitism? This is linked to the party’s attitude to Israel because Labour under Starmer seems to think that opposition to that nation’s policies is the same as hatred of Jews – a clear fallacy.

Still on an ethnic theme, isn’t the Labour leader due a kicking over his frankly racist attitude to the Black Lives Matter campaign?

Or, going back to support for the Tories, why is he getting a free pass over his demand that schools must open again in September – in line with Boris Johnson’s own comments – when it is still not clear whether this is putting our children, and ourselves, in danger?

In fact it seems all-too-easy to challenge Keir Starmer over failings in his leadership.

Has he done anything that party members can wholeheartedly support?

Source: Channel crossings: Keir Starmer faces Labour revolt over stance on refugees | The Independent

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Why is Israel’s latest bombing campaign against Gaza going unreported?

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Heavy damage: this is what Israel is doing to Gaza – and none of your elected representatives has anything to say about it.

I think we know the answer to the question in the headline but let’s establish the facts.

At the time the Morning Star article was published, Israel had been bombing Gaza for eight days, non-stop, in response to – Israeli authorities claimed – two missiles.

Civilian property – mark that: civilian property – has suffered heavy damage, according to the report.

In addition, Israel has forced Palestinian fishing boats out of the sea and cut off the only commercial route into the enclave, stopping crucial supplies of fuel, meaning the energy supply will have to be cut to around three or four hours per day.

This Writer is reminded of an attempt by a noted celebrity who is strongly in favour of Israel’s aggressively-Zionist policies of extermination against the Palestinian people, to paint Israel as the victim.

A commenter to This Site tells us she said, referring to the recent explosion in Beirut:

“As soon as Lebanon happened, I can imagine the types that were ready to say, ‘Israel’s on the border, did they, would they, could they?’ I’m very grateful that Hezbollah said they did it.”

Journalist : “Wait, what? It was an accident resulting from political fecklessness, Hezbollah isn’t even the largest party in the Lebanese parliament, and definitely nobody said they did it. She makes a noise as though we’ll just agree to differ……”

You see how it goes?

As mentioned before on This Site, violence by either side in a conflict is abhorrent. But it behooves the better-equipped antagonist to respond to outbursts from a weaker foe in moderation – and that simply isn’t happening.

Every day – if we know where to look – we can find accounts of atrocities carried out by the euphemistically-named Israel Defence Force.

But we don’t see these reports on our national news because anyone reporting them would instantly be labelled an anti-Semite by people like the celebrity mentioned above.

It’s time that changed.

Much of Twitter seems to agree with me – those on the right side of history, anyway:

This thread shows what Palestine is being put through and why it is wrong:

And this response to the same tweet asks a question I think we’d all like to see answered:

It’s true. Who’s the foreign secretary now? Dominic Raab? Still? Oh well – where’s his condemnation of the Israeli government?

What about Keir Starmer? Does he really have nothing to say? Perhaps he’s too busy accusing Labour members of anti-Semitism for sharing a Vox Political post, or victimising people in some other way to get involved in the realities.

There’s only one way to get change, and that is to demand it – in a way that threatens the muttonheads in power.

Will you speak up for Gaza? Or are you afraid the nasty big boys (and girls) will call you a name?

Source: Electricity cut to three hours a day in Gaza as Israeli bombing continues for 8th day | Morning Star

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The two faces of Ed Miliband are revealed by the Rebecca Long-Bailey row

Ed Miliband has claimed his boss Keir Starmer was right to sack Rebecca Long-Bailey – while also claiming the party isn’t purging itself of left-wingers.

The two claims are incompatible. Long-Bailey was the continuity left-wing candidate in the party’s recent leadership election and Starmer has used a flimsy excuse related to anti-Semitism to sack her.

Many other left-wingers are either being suspended for the same flimsy reason or have already been expelled (like This Writer) – but Miliband is insisting that there is no purge.

He has just incinerated any credibility he had left. Nobody should believe a word of it.

Look at this nonsense:

Miliband, the shadow business secretary and a former party leader, said Long-Bailey was a decent person and not antisemitic but that Starmer was right to sack her.

The reason the Maxine Peake interview was a problem “is not that it had a criticism of the state of Israel. I’m a big critic of what the Israeli government has done on a number of occasions. It was that it was a false criticism of the state of Israel, or rather the Israeli Defence Force, linked to the death of George Floyd, wrongly, saying that somehow tactics that killed George Floyd were linked to the Israelis,” Miliband told the BBC’s The Andrew Marr Show.

“The problem is that over the centuries when calamitous things have happened, Jews have been blamed. That’s why there’s an antisemitism issue in relation to this and that’s why I believe Keir took the right decision. I think she made a significant error of judgment.”

Notice the wording: “When calamitous things have happened, Jews have been blamed.” Not “Jews have been wrongly blamed”.

It would be anti-Semitic to blame Jews – in this case, Jewish people working for the Israeli police or military – for something they haven’t done.

But we know that police from many US states have been trained by the Israeli police and/or military. And we have photographic evidence of the Israeli police/military – well, see for yourself:

Choke hold: Israeli armed forces using the same ‘knee on neck’ technique that was used to kill George Floyd. But we’re being asked to believe Israel never taught that technique to US police and it is anti-Semitic to suggest that one country’s armed forces could teach such techniques to another’s police.

It is in the face of this evidence that the Israeli authorities – not the Jews – are claiming their forces don’t teach these methods to US police.

It is not a credible position, therefore neither is Miliband’s.

So his other claim – that left-wingers in the Labour Party aren’t being subjected to a purge – must also fall. He said on the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show:

Allies of Ms Long-Bailey who have criticised her sacking – such as former shadow chancellor John McDonnell and ex-party chair Ian Lavery – would not be disciplined for doing so.

He dismissed concerns expressed by some on the left of the party that this was a prelude to a further distancing from the Jeremy Corbyn-era and that legitimate criticism of Israel would be frowned upon.

“I heard something… about how Keir wants to purge these people. He is not about purges. He wants to change the country by not having the Labour Party mired in issues which, frankly, provide a stain on us. Keir took very strong action [against Ms Long-Bailey] and now we need to move on and deal with the issues of anti-Semitism we face.”

This Writer doesn’t believe that for a moment.

By sacking Long-Bailey and forcing left-wingers to reconsider whether they have a future in the Labour Party, he has plunged Labour even deeper into the mire.

He has not proved that criticism of Israel over this issue is not legitimate. All the evidence suggests that it has a very strong factual basis but Starmer seems determined to put his hands over his ears, shut his eyes, shake his head and mutter, “No, no, no,” like a petulant schoolboy whenever anybody tries to point this out. I have no doubt that Miliband will do the same.

It is this attitude that worsens Labour’s position. In refusing to take serious issues seriously, the party makes a mockery of its own position on anti-Semitism; how can it take a firm stand on the issue if it can’t accept the difference between anti-Semitism and justified criticism of a foreign government?

Left-wingers – including many who have not yet been smeared with accusations of anti-Semitism that are based on Labour’s bizarre misinterpretation – are quitting the party in large numbers, or seriously considering it, because of this pig-headed idiocy.

If there is a stain on the party, it is on Starmer and – despite his own Jewish heritage – Miliband.

They could put a stop to it by admitting their fault, accepting that Israel does have a prima facie case to answer (even though we may never have accurate facts because it is in that government’s interests to lie if its forces have been providing the disputed training), and resetting their claims about anti-Semitism to fall in line with accepted definitions of it.

But they won’t. They simply aren’t mature enough.

Source: Ed Miliband: Starmer was right to sack Rebecca Long-Bailey | Politics | The Guardian

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How many scandals can Keir Starmer hide with his sacking of Rebecca Long-Bailey?

 

Choke hold: Israeli armed forces using the same ‘knee on neck’ technique that was used to kill George Floyd. But we’re being asked to believe Israel never taught that technique to US police and it is anti-Semitic to suggest that one country’s armed forces could teach such techniques to another’s police.

Quite a few, it seems.

Let’s start with the biggie: Israel is due to launch a major invasion of Palestinian territory next week, targeting in particular areas containing the aquifers that make life possible in these parched places.

Starmer’s sacking of RLB is a warning to Labour Party members that he will not tolerate the voicing of any dissent against this racist military action.

Any comment that he dares to make will be entirely ineffectual:

Labour has a policy that all people have a right to self-determination. Israel’s right to self-determination has been used as a stick to beat party members accused of anti-Semitism. Palestine’s right to self-determination goes unrecognised under racist Starmer.

But let’s not stop there. Starmer has also taken the heat off Robert Jenrick, whose corrupt manipulation of the planning system to save Richard Desmond £45 million in return for a small bung for Conservative funds was causing trouble for the Tories.

While Starmer moved quickly to sack RLB, he has done nothing about the right-wingers in his party who subjected Diane Abbott to racist abuse:

Finally, let’s bear it in mind that Starmer has no interest in opposing the Tory government’s genocidal policy on handling the Covid-19 pandemic…

… and, come to that, the people to whom he is pandering – the Board of Deputies of British Jews and all those other right-wing supporters of the Likud government in Israel – never criticised successive Tory governments for killing huge swathes of the UK population either:

Underlying all of this, remember: The claim RLB was sacked for – in an interview with her constituent Maxine Peake – is accurate. Israeli forces do indeed train United States police. And Starmer’s claim that it is anti-Semitic to say this loses any force when one realises that Jews know about it and oppose it:

 

Here’s the last word – it should be the last word on Starmer’s catastrophic leadership of the Labour Party (but it won’t, because these creeps cling like limpets):

Long-Bailey’s sacking tells us all we need to know about Keir ‘double-standard’ Starmer and his racist Labour Party

Racist anti-Semite: Keir Starmer’s sacking of Rebecca Long-Bailey shows support for Israeli organisations teaching US police how to subjugate – and in the case of George Floyd, kill – black and minority ethnic people. Paradoxically, he also supports the presence of anti-Semite Rachel Reeves in his Shadow Cabinet.

This is the end of the Labour Party as an inclusive, anti-racist organisation.

Keir Starmer has sacked Rebecca Long-Bailey from the Shadow Cabinet after she retweeted a link to an Independent interview with one of her constituents, the actor Maxine Peake.

Starmer’s excuse is that Ms Peake’s article includes an anti-Semitic conspiracy theory. He is lying in one of the most disgusting ways possible.

Here’s the passage in Ms Peake’s interview that has caused the offence:

“Systemic racism is a global issue,” she adds. “The tactics used by the police in America, kneeling on George Floyd’s neck, that was learnt from seminars with Israeli secret services.”

It is not anti-Semitic to suggest that. She wasn’t saying, “The Jews taught police to kneel on George Floyd’s neck.”

In fact, it seems widely accepted that Israeli organisations do indeed teach tactics to US police.

So this isn’t anti-Semitic to Keir Starmer:

Baltimore law enforcement officials, along with hundreds of others from FloridaNew Jersey, Pennsylvania, CaliforniaArizona, Connecticut, New York, Massachusetts, North CarolinaGeorgiaWashington state as well as the DC Capitol police have all traveled to Israel for training. Thousands of others have received training from Israeli officials here in the U.S.

The U.S. Department of Justice published a report … that documented “widespread constitutional violations, discriminatory enforcement, and culture of retaliation” within the Baltimore Police Department (BPD).

Nor is this, which you should note is from the Jerusalem Post:

A city in North Carolina has become the first municipality in the United States to ban training and other forms of exchange between its police department and Israel’s military or police.

“The Israel Defense Forces and the Israel Police have a long history of violence and harm against Palestinian people and Jews of color,” [a] petition stated. “They persist in using tactics of extrajudicial killing, excessive force, racial profiling and repression of social justice movements. Such tactics have been condemned by international human rights organizations for violating the human rights of Palestinians.”

But Starmer seems to think that Ms Peake’s comments are anti-Semitic – despite their factual accuracy.

Doesn’t that suggest that Starmer is himself a… you know… racist?

He has deliberately attacked people who have exposed the way racists in one country – “The Israel Defense Forces and the Israel Police have a long history of violence and harm against Palestinian people and Jews of color” – have been teaching their methods to racists in another  – “’widespread constitutional violations, discriminatory enforcement, and culture of retaliation’ within the Baltimore Police Department”.

Anyone who genuinely wants to fight racism would be thanking Ms Peake and Ms Long-Bailey for bringing this issue to public knowledge. Instead, he has sacked his MP from the shadow cabinet.

Meanwhile, Rachel Reeves – who made public her own support for a very well-documented anti-Semite – remains in the Shadow Cabinet with Starmer’s full support:

It seems clear that in Starmer’s Labour, racism and anti-Semitism are supported, and their opponents are opposed – all while the Labour leader glibly mouths platitudes claiming the exact opposite.

For those of us who have been contesting decisions to expel us from membership of Labour, this presents a thorny problem.

I had always intended to return to the party and campaign for reform, after I win my court case against Labour, which is now set to take place in October.

But I think it would harm my position if I were to say that now, because I do not want to be associated with any organisation that can be clearly identified as a racist, anti-Semite endeavour.

And Labour under Starmer is a racist, anti-Semite endeavour in a way that the party under Corbyn never was.

Or so it seems to me.

Ms Long-Bailey has put her side of this story in a Twitter thread:

This puts a nastier complexion on the matter still, because it seems Starmer used this issue as a pretext to eliminate Ms Long-Bailey – one of the last left-wingers, if not the last, from the Shadow Cabinet. He could have given her a chance to do as she suggested but he didn’t. That says it all.

Well, he should be gratified to know that we’ve all got the message. Take a look at some of the responses on Twitter:

https://twitter.com/AmmarKazmi_/status/1276157080819372037

https://twitter.com/simonmaginn/status/1276177278007939072

It does.

If Ms Peake does decide to sue Starmer, I would certainly consider helping fund her case.

Alternatively, Starmer could put us all out of our misery by making a full apology and resigning his membership of UK Labour with immediate effect.

Source: Maxine Peake: ‘People who couldn’t vote Labour because of Corbyn? They voted Tory as far as I’m concerned’ | The Independent

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After shaming himself helping Priti Patel run her private foreign policy in Israel, this Lord should keep his mouth shut

Lord Polak: Does a man who supports human rights abuses really belong in the Upper House of the UK’s Parliament?

Lord Polak is the man who accompanied Priti Patel to Israel in 2017, where it seems he acted as a go-between for her to hold meetings with senior political figures, without telling the UK’s Foreign Office.

She was carrying out her own foreign policy, contrary to UK government expectations at the time.

And he facilitated it.

In This Writer’s view, he crossed the border between support for another country’s government and treason against his own.

Ms Patel lost her Cabinet job over the affair – although it says much about Boris Johnson that she is back, and in the much more important position of Home Secretary.

Did Lord Polak experience any sanctions at all? I don’t remember any.

And now he’s talking about international forums “singling out” Israel. Isn’t he the one with the obsession?

Note that he also supports Israeli human rights abuses (as described in this article).

It seems he can’t wait for Johnson to outlaw BDS – the “Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions” process in which companies complicit in such abuses are denied trade.

It seems clear from his support of Ms Patel and Lord Polak, and his plan to outlaw BDS, that Johnson also supports human rights abuses. But then, you only have to look at Tory policy on state benefits to know that.

A veteran pro-Israel lobbyist in Westminster believes the recently-elected Conservative government represents an important opportunity to advance Israel’s interests amongst British decision-makers.

Lord Polak, a Tory peer, and president of Conservative Friends of Israel, was speaking to right-wing news outlet JNS days after a speech in the House of Lords in which he attacked the so-called “singling out” of Israel in international forums such as the United Nations.

“I have no problem with legitimate criticism where it is due, but this obsession with Israel needs to be addressed. This singling out of the Jewish state is wrong, unjustified and plays a role in the rise and rise of anti-Semitism,” Polak told the chamber on 7 January.

Source: UK’s Lord Polak says new Tory government is opportunity for pro-Israel lobbyists – Middle East Monitor

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Hear this satirical song that mocks Trump’s hypocrisy on racism

Victims of racism and misogyny: Donald Trump has told these four Congresswomen to “go back” to the countries from which they came; they are all US citizens.

Has anybody else been watching the ongoing soap opera of Donald Trump, Ilhan Omar, Rashida Tlaib (together with other US Democratic Congresswomen Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Ayanna Pressley), and the Israeli government headed by Benjamin Netanyahu with the same astonished bemusement as This Writer?

I mean, how can anybody justify this out-and-out racism from the leaders of two supposedly democratic countries?

You’ll remember it started when Mr Trump decided to publish racist tweets about the four ladies (three of whom were born in the US and one was naturalised after coming to that country as a child), suggesting they should “go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came”.

Unless he was referring to “totally broken and crime infested places” in the United States, that’s stark racism, right there.

The when Ms Omar and Ms Tlaib were preparing to visit Israel, he put pressure on Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu to block them from being allowed entry to that country. The first Muslim women elected to Congress, they were going to visit the occupied Palestinian territories, most notably the West Bank.

Ms Omar responded to the ban by saying it was an “affront” for Mr Netanyahu to give in to pressure from Mr Trump. Others have strongly criticised the US president for influencing a foreign leader against his own political opponents.

“Trump’s Muslim ban is what Israel is implementing, this time against two duly elected Members of Congress,” said Ms Omar.

“Sadly, this is not a surprise given the public positions of Prime Minister Netanyahu, who has consistently resisted peace efforts, restricted the freedom of movement of Palestinians, limited public knowledge of the brutal realities of the occupation and aligned himself with Islamophobes like Donald Trump.”

Mr Netanyahu’s decision has harmed Israel’s position among US politicians, with staunch Israel support and minority leader in the Senate, Chuck Schumer, calling it a sign of “weakness, not strength”, and saying it would “only hurt the US-Israeli relationship and support for Israel in America”.

House speaker Nancy Pelosi added that it was “beneath the dignity of the great State of Israel”. She said Mr Trump’s interference was “a sign of ignorance and disrespect, and beneath the dignity of the office of the president”.

2020 Democratic presidential contender Bernie Sanders said, “It is disgusting that a bigot like Trump is attacking Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar in this way. Opposing Netanyahu’s policies is not ‘hating the Jewish people.’ We must stand together against those who promote hatred and racism in Israel, Palestine, the US and everywhere.”

And yet Mr Trump seems to be hugely popular with a certain slab off the American people – popularity that has no rational explanation and that has been lampooned rather brutally but effectively in the following video:

Perhaps this is the way forward?

After Nick Clegg had the satirical song treatment with Sorry, which turned his apology for the Liberal Democrats’ decision to ditch their policy to cancel student tuition fees and support tripling them instead, in order to go into the disastrous coalition government with the Conservatives, he disappeared from public view and is now in charge of censoring left-wing political websites combating ‘fake news’ on Facebook.

It’s true that right-wing politicians hate the ridicule of the mob.

But will it work on Mr Trump?

Let’s be honest. Based on our experience of the last few years, he’d probably claim it was adulation.

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Pro-Palestine demonstration in London to show support after latest violence

Propagandists for the apartheid Israeli government took a psychological battering when thousands took to the streets of London for a demonstration of solidarity with the oppressed people of Palestine.

Thousands of people marched through central London on Saturday to mark the 71st anniversary of the Palestinian Nakba (Catastrophe), and to call for an end to the latest hostilities between Israel and the remnants of Palesine that the Israeli government is working hard to destroy.

The demonstration was organised for by the Palestinian Forum in Britain (PFB), Palestine Solidarity Campaign (PSC), Muslim Association of Britain (MAB) and Stop the War Campaign (STW).

If you need a reason to understand the need for such a demonstration, consider:

Armed factions in Gaza have given Israel until Monday to deliver on its commitments under a ceasefire agreement reached earlier this week.

That ceasefire brought to an end more than 48 hours of violence across the Gaza-Israel boundary that left 27 Palestinians in Gaza dead – 14 of them civilians killed by Israeli fire – as well as four civilian fatalities on the Israeli side.

The agreement reached on Monday is understood to be similar to understandings that brought an end to major Israeli offensives in Gaza in summer 2014 and November 2012.

The immediate steps expected by Palestinian factions include the reopening of the fishing zone, the transfer of funding from Qatar and the reopening of Gaza’s commercial crossings.

“In Gaza, where the economy struggles for survival and residents face adverse humanitarian conditions, every additional day that passes until these further restrictions are lifted by Israel has severe implications,” Gisha, a human rights group that monitors Israel’s siege, stated on Tuesday.

“Traders cannot fulfil their business commitments, patients miss crucial appointments for life-saving treatment, and fishermen cannot feed their families,” Gisha added.

The rights group said that “Israel’s use of its control over the crossings to deliberately harm the civilian population in Gaza has to stop.”

Even when Israeli bombs aren’t being dropped, the status quo in Gaza – under air, sea and land blockade for more than a decade, and military occupation for half a century – is far from normal.

Every two in three Palestinians in Gaza is a refugee from lands now inside Israel, which forbids Palestinian refugees from exercising their right to return because they are not Jewish.

One wonders what the severely-outgunned Palestinians will do if Israel refuses to to honour the conditions of its own ceasefire – but what else can they do, other than demand that agreements be honoured?

And while it is true that neither side in this conflict can claim the moral high ground, one has to ask why the side with overwhelming military superiority insists on continuing to inflict terror on the weaker side – if not in order to wipe it out altogether, eventually.

Opposition to that was another reason for the London march.

A highlight of the day was the speech by activist Ahed Tamimi, who served an eight-month prison sentence for slapping an Israeli soldier after her cousin, then aged 15, was shot in the head at close range with a rubber-coated steel bullet, severely wounding him.

There was considerable opposition to the Conservative government of Theresa May, over its support for the Israeli government:

The Labour Party’s position is clear. In government, it will recognise Palestine as a sovereign state. Labour was well-represented on the demonstration:

Of course, this is the reason supporters of the Israeli government are so keen to smear Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn and his supporters in the party as anti-Semites, in the face of the evidence showing he has supported the Jewish people as well as Palestinians.

Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.

https://www.crowdjustice.com/case/mike-sivier-libel-fight/


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Backlash against Zionism as Israeli soldiers commit more atrocities

Let’s remind ourselves of the things done by representatives of Israel in the name of their ethno-political ideology, Zionism:

Israeli soldiers shot on Thursday a restrained Palestinian teenager they had detained for suspected stone-throwing as he was attempting to flee, although he was blindfolded and handcuffed.

The soldiers pursued the detainee near the Palestinian village of Tekoa in the West Bank.

The suspect was kept detained at the scene even after he had been shot, however, after clashes between soldiers and Palestinians at the scene, the Palestinians evacuated the suspect to receive medical treatment.

There is video evidence:

It is in this context that supporters of Israeli Zionism including Labour Friends of Israel and the Jewish Labour Movement demanded an apology from Labour MP Richard Burgon after video evidence emerged of him saying Zionism was “the enemy of peace”.

And in this context it is welcome that Jewish lawyers Geoffrey Bindman and Stephen Sedley wrote to The Guardian to express their dismay at the pressure that was put on Mr Burgon, and their shame at Israel’s mistreatment of the Palestinian people.

They wrote: “As Jewish lawyers who have been concerned for much of our lives with opposing racism in general and antisemitism in particular, we see no reason for any such apology.

“We are among the large number of Jews, worldwide, who regard with shame the military oppression by Israel of the Palestinian people and the ongoing appropriation, by illegal settlement, of the little land that is still theirs.

“The Jewish Labour Movement, a pro-Zionist group within the Labour party, has no entitlement to speak for Jews at large in seeking to stigmatise all criticism of Zionism as antisemitic. The undoubted misuse of “Zionist” as a surrogate for “Jewish” has to be dealt with case-specifically, not by immunising Zionism from all criticism.”

Last year, one of the accusations against This Writer, under which the Labour Party wanted to expel me, was that I outed the Jewish Labour Movement as the “Zionist Labour Movement” and said it spoke for Zionists who supported Israel rather than for all Jews – which is exactly what these learned men have said. Apparently this was proof of anti-Semitism.

Labour’s National Kangaroo Court Constitutional Committee decided to find the case against me proved, despite having had it demonstrated that there was no anti-Semitism at all in my comment; it was merely a statement of the facts.

Now these learned gentleman – who are Jewish – have supported my statements. I think I deserve a rather large apology from the Labour Party, don’t you?

Or are these lawyers also “the wrong kind of Jew”?


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‘Zionism’ remarks: Burgon urged to apologise – to supporters of atrocities

Richard Burgon: He has no need to apologise.

I can’t say I’m impressed with Richard Burgon’s rationalisation of his remarks about Zionism, that were caught on video five years ago.

Investigative journalist Iggy Ostanin posted a video showing Mr Burgon denying having made the comments to the BBC’s Andrew Neil, followed immediately by proof that he did:

Interesting clip, that.

It’s from 2014, when the Israeli government had launched Operation Protective Edge, a hugely-controversial offensive against Palestinians in Gaza in which it was estimated that more than 2,125 Palestinians were killed and more than 10,500 wounded, compared with 67 military and six civilian Israeli deaths, with 469 Israeli soldiers and 87 civilians wounded.

It is known that Israeli government policy is to deprive the Palestinian people of their land and – if they resist – of their lives. We have seen that in action but if you would like evidence of their behaviour, here’s some:

According to Maureen Murphy, “The Israeli military killed one Palestinian child in the West Bank and Gaza per week on average last year, typically injuring them in their upper body and head. You can’t blame Hamas for Israeli snipers training their guns at children’s torsos and heads, however hard you try.” She supported this with a link to evidence. Read it here.

The ideology that informs these atrocities is Zionism. It is an ethno-political belief that a Jewish nation in what is now Israel should be established and – now that it has been – developed and protected. It should never be connected directly with the Jewish people as a whole; they are separate and many Jews reject Zionism, especially as it is practised by the Israeli government and its supporters.

It is an ideology of hatred. Before Israel was established, it was considered by many to be anti-Semitic. Think about it: anyone saying they support the migration of Jewish people away from their current home to a foreign land (that was already occupied, remember) could open themselves up to accusations that they hate Jews because they are Jews – the classic definition of the anti-Semite.

Now Israel has been established, anybody supporting the Zionism practised by its government and soldiers is supporting the theft of Palestinian land and the displacement – or genocide – of Palestinian people. And it could still be said to be anti-Semitic as the behaviour of the Israeli government and its soldiers is likely to breed opposition against them that develops into hate. That hate could then be spread to apply to all Jews.

Oh, and it turns out there are many Jews who don’t support Zionism. Many do, but if anyone tries to tell you they speak for all Jews in supporting this ideology, they are lying.

In this context, it is clear that Mr Burgon’s comments in 2014 were reasonable expressions of opinion, based on the facts. As they continue to be. It’s just a shame he felt he had to backtrack on his words about Zionism as practised by the Israeli government.

His critics – defenders of Zionism like The Board of Deputies of British Jews (who don’t represent a huge number of British Jews at all – secular Jews represent a third of the population in the UK and have nothing to do with the BoD), Jonathan Goldstein of the Jewish Leadership Council, Labour Friends of Israel director Jennifer Gerber and Jewish Labour Movement chairman Mike Katz – have tried to equate peaceful opposition to their hate-filled ideology with hatred of all Jews and that is nothing but a lie. It’s a despicable lie, at that.

Why have they done it? Well…

Another commenter, Phil Vanes, suggested: “Do remember me saying some time ago that because Corbyn is untouchable, his opponents will instead concentrate on picking off his close supporters one by one. Well guess what? It looks like it’s Richard Burgon’s time now.”

One more point: In the clip of him attacking Zionism, Mr Burgon calls for Labour Friends of Israel (LFI) resign from that group “to show support for all humanity” instead of supporting the atrocities carried out by the Israeli government and its soldiers, yet we have seen LFI’s Jennifer Gerber, and Mike Katz of the Jewish Labour Movement, condemning those words.

Logic dictates that they must therefore support the atrocities in the articles to which I have linked above.

LFI and the JLM support the theft of Palestinian land.

LFI and the JLM support violence against – and the murder of – Palestinian people.

Their outbursts against Mr Burgon prove it.

Or are we about to see a protestation of opposition to these Israeli atrocities? I won’t hold my breath waiting.


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