Jenny Tonge: “I Have A Dream.”

Jenny Tonge dreaming of Palestinian refugees marching on Israel.

Jenny Tonge dreaming of Palestinian refugees marching on Israel.

Last night in Parliament I’d had my camera on for all of 23 seconds before the Parliamentary police were called by the organisers of the event to eject me from the committee room for “unauthorised filming” (see video clip below).

I turned the camera off pretty sharply as 60 sets of hostile eyes trained on you is a pretty uncomfortable feeling. Luckily, Gerald Kaufman MP, who was chairing, asked the police officer to leave in no uncertain terms.

The altercation came when I was filming Jenny Tonge’s contribution to the meeting. I had seen other people holding up cameras and Iphones and so I didn’t think it was a problem (listen to the audio clip below from 3 minutes 35 seconds in.)

The meeting was held by the Palestine Return Centre and it was mainly a report-back by a group of Parliamentarians who had recently visited the Palestinian refugee camps in Lebanon.

Liberal Democrat Baroness Tonge started her talk by welcoming the Jewish Chronicle if it was in the room hoping for a comment from her which they could then use to try to get her sacked.

She finished the talk by describing her dream that one day all the Palestinian refugees will unite and march together to claim back their homeland. She said it would be impossible for Israel to kill all of them.

She also said that there was no questioning of the right of return of Jews from Eastern Europe who had never even been to Israel, but the Palestinians, who had the right under international law, were not allowed to live there. And anyway, she said, even if the Palestinians were allowed to exercise this right to return not all of them would actually take it up.

She also warned that there will be no Israel in the long term if they did nothing about the Palestinian question.

While Tonge seemed to be having dreams of Palestinian civilians being used as a combined weapon with which to destroy Israel and which, on her own admission, might leave many of them dead the rest of the meeting was pretty much 0n-topic.

Jeremy Corbyn MP and Gerald Kaufman MP described the dangerous electric wiring they had seen in the Palestinian refugees camps in Lebanon and the sewage running down the middle of the streets.

Live cables were also seen dangling just above head height. Many Palestinians had, apparently, died after having been electrocuted by them.

Nadim Shehadi, of Chatham House, described the Palestinians as being trapped by the self-fulfilling prophecy of Lebanese political culture that viewed the Palestinians as likely to be going home.

This meant the Palestinian refugees would always have limited employment rights and little political clout.

Shehadi also pointed out that the refugee camps had originally been destroyed by fighting between the PLO and Syrian forces in Lebanon during the 1980s and they had never been rebuilt.

But the one question I should have asked during the short Q&A is how can Lebanon let people rot like this? The Lebanese Ambassador was apparently in the room. I wonder how she would have explained it.

The big downside of the trip was when the Parliamentarians met with Osama Hamdan, the Head of Hamas Foreign Affairs (see Page 26 of this report.)

Other Parliamentarians on the trip besides Kaufman and Corbyn were Alexandra Thein (a German MEP), Derek Vaughan (a Welsh Labour MEP), Frank Engel (a Luxembourg MEP), Michael Connarty (a Labour MP) and Robert Goebbels (another Luxembourg MEP). Tonge was not on the trip.

Meanwhile, my own dream is to get through one of these blasted meetings without being forced to turn off my camera.

Jenny’s Dream. (Jenny’s Dream starts at 11 mins 45 secs.)

Gerald Kaufman MP who at least stood up for democracy.

Gerald Kaufman MP who at least stood up for democracy.

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41 responses to “Jenny Tonge: “I Have A Dream.”

  1. ..and Robert Goebbels (another Luxembourg MEP).

    Wow, what a name he has. Is he the great grandson or great great grandson? You should have told him that his saba raba would be most proud of him and would be smiling up from hell while he burns.

    Also well done for enduring the same breathing space as Tonge. Amazing. Ghastly creature.

  2. Sharon Klaff

    Wow Richard – you do get around!! How did you hold your tongue? What a piece of work she is!! Do take care though – we can’t have you being carted off!!

  3. Daniel Marks

    Hi Richard,

    As a point of information, wouldn’t you be better off to have someone sitting, not near to you, doing the filming?

    It seems that that you often ask a question,thus giving away your identity, and are then told to turn off your camera, etc. I know that I’ve become a bit of an armchair Anglo-Jewish activist, but I think that I’d have some bloke sitting as far away from me as possible whose only job would be to film.

    Then come in 10 minutes after him, if possible sit next to someone else with a camera and then, when you’re ready, do the dirty deed and ask your question. If they try to shut you up, turn around to anyone ELSE with a camera and say, “Don’t forget to film this Brian.” This should cause great confusion and your and chap ought to be able to catch it all.

    Go on, give it a go.

    • richardmillett

      Daniel, the problem is that when i go to these events there is always someone who knows me and they point me out to the organisers and from then on the organisers keep a close eye on me and look for any excuse to have me taken out. I actually didn’t say a word for the whole event but when i went outside after the meeting had ended the policeman showed me his book of notes about how i was intimidating people in the room and how Gerald Kaufman had asked for me to be taken out. This had all been fed to the policeman by the organisers of the event.

      • Blacklisted Dictator

        Richard,
        You write: “the policeman showed me his book of notes about how i was intimidating people in the room and how Gerald Kaufman had asked for me to be taken out.”

        In what ways were you “intimidating” people? If Kaufamn asked for you to be removed, why did the cops fail to eject you?

      • richardmillett

        Because the police were fed a pack of lies by the organisers. Kaufman never asked for me to be taken out and so when the police came in kaufman ask for them to leave.

  4. I cannot open Jennys dream
    I know , who would want to !
    Is it locked , blocked , censored ?

    • richardmillett

      it seems to be ok. is anyone else having problems opening the audio to jenny tonge’s talk?

  5. Daniel Marks

    Hi Richard,

    Same plan, three of you, one photographer, one who asks the questions, you sit there and smile. Oh and you might want to role your eyes and tut a bit, if that’s still legal.

    There’s a story told of a hassid who breeds chickens and one day he turns up at his rebbe’s house and tells him, “My chickens are dying!” The rabbi investigates the circumstances, “What are you feeding them?” “Wheat, of course.” He looks in a few books and finally recommends, “Rather than feeding them wheat, give them corn,”

    The hassid returns the next week reporting, “I fed them corn, but they’re still dying.”

    The rebbe returns to his sacred books and then asks, “Wet corn or dry?” “Wet.”
    “It’s simple” the rebbe says,”Give them dry corn.”

    The next week the hassid comes back, “I’m feeding them wet corn and they’re still dying.”

    The rebbe thinks a little longer this time and proclaims, “Look I have a lot of good ideas. Before I begin, how many chickens exactly do you have left?”

    I too have many ideas, Richard.

    How many Anglo-Jewish activists do you have left?

  6. Daniel Marks

    Please replace with:

    The next week the hassid comes back, “I’m feeding them DRY corn and they’re still dying.”

  7. Whew! Richard, when I read the post title I thought the lady was the subject of your dreams!….

  8. Israelinurse

    This is just daft. British Parliament proscribes Hamas but allows an organisation seriously linked to it and with quite a few of its officials known to be Hamas activists to hold meetings on its premises?

  9. richardmillett

    Exactly. What is the point in banning them if there are no sanctions for meeting them?

  10. Comments seem to have been closed at the Benny Morris thread, therefore I post it here:

    Benny Morris tells of his experience at the LSE including the highly interesting before and after happenings.

    http://nationalinterest.org/commentary/curbing-muslim-intimidation-5496

    Accosted on Kingsway

    As to there being silence during the lecture I wonder whether they have taken measures to assure that after that horrible Danny Ayalon event where the host only managed to get the hecklers to behave somewhat by declaring that he was on their side.

    • Yes, thank you Silke. It’s infuriating and embarrassing that people can be treated like that on our streets.

  11. richardmillett

    Brilliant. Thanks for that, Silke. A fascinating read.

  12. Because the police were fed a pack of lies by the organisers. Kaufman never asked for me to be taken out.

    Richard, I know it may not be worth pursuing in practice, but theoretically, this constitutes offences of wasting police time, if not perverting the course of justice, and a charge could be laid against these people, especially as their actions are persistent and repeated. The same kind of thing was happening you will recall at the Col Travers meeting a year ago also in a committee room in parliament, where police kept rushing in at the behest of these people and attempting to eject you, me or Hoffman at various stages, and each time the chair intervened.

    The difficulty is to pin down exactly who made the complaint each time.

    • richardmillett

      Amie, it was worse this time because i literally had kept my lips zipped for the whole event. The police officer took copious notes of what had been said to him by the organiser outside and he even apologised to Gerald Kaufman afterwards in my presence. He said to Kaufman that he was led to believe that Kaufman had asked for me to be removed. This is all documented in the officer’s official notebook, so you have a point.

  13. Richard, this does look like a clear cut case where it might be worth pursuing.

  14. “She also said that there was no questioning of the right of return of Jews from Eastern Europe who had never even been to Israel”

    Err, how many of the so-called ‘Palestinian’ so-called ‘refugees’ had ever been to Israel?

    “but the Palestinians, who had the right under international law”

    Another brainless amoeba jabbering about ‘international law’ as though she knew the first thing about it.

  15. What a regrettable blunder and carbuncle on the face of humanity you are, Marks.

  16. Daniel Marks

    Leah,

    With all due respect, I have no idea what you are referring to nor do I have any interest in your elaborating. I certainly have no intention of getting drawn into any kind of childish slanging match or exchange of verbal abuse.

    I do know you, but while you give every appearance of being an unusually angry and troubled lady, I am not your problem and being neither a psychiatrist nor a gynecologist, am certainly not its solution.

    Good luck and have a great Shabbat,

    • You comment on my periods and on my sex life, and then accuse me of verbal abuse? You really are a regrettable blunder and purulent carbuncle.

  17. But the one question I should have asked during the short Q&A is how can Lebanon let people rot like this?

    Fantastic! Zionism creates a huge humanitarian crisis but Lebanon gets to blame. Anything, Millett… anything to absolve Zionism, n’est pas?

  18. Sharon Klaff

    Well it seems I can no longer post on the Bennie Morris blog, so here is something he wrote about how he was accosted by a group of Muslims on the way to the lecture he gave at LSE:
    http://nationalinterest.org/commentary/curbing-muslim-intimidation-5496
    And so Jews can no longer walk the streets of London without being attacked with impunity by groups of modern day Nazis and as before the authorities do nothing. David Cameron, Theresa May and William Hague you should be ashamed of yourselves. As before you will woe the day you stood aside and remained silent. Just remember the Jews are the only nation and civilisation that has survived throughought the fall of the Romans, the Greeks, the Turks, communism and now it seems the West whose last days are dripping on by.

    • Sharon, these people HAVE no shame. Hague does not believe Israel is even entitled to defend herself against ships carrying terrorists.

  19. Hi Gert,

    I’m sure you already know this as you “…have a growing small library of books on the conflict and its various aspects”, however in the event that any Martians have just landed and are reading this excellent blog, let me remind you of a few, what are in my opinion, undisputed facts.

    The various Palestinian “refugee” situation was a direct result not of the creation of the State of Israel, but of the Israeli War of Independence. In other words had the War of Independence not taken place there would have been no “refugee” situation.

    The War of Independence was instigated by Arabs living in then Palestine, as a response to the United Nations partition of Palestine and Israel’s declaration of Independence. At that point the Jewish people were being offered 16% of the land area of Mandate Palestine – Israel accepted, the Arabs rejected.

    As a result of the war various population transfers took place.

    1. All Jews living in areas over the Green Line were expelled from their homes, most would never return. Many of these “refugees” had been living in those homes for hundreds of years. They were never compensated for their loss.
    2. Almost all Jews living in Arab and Islamic states in the Middle East and parts of North Africa were forced to leave after undergoing pogroms, etc. They either left their homes and businesses behind, to have them confiscated, or sold them for pennies to whoever would buy them.
    3. A large part, about two-thirds of the Arabs living in the 16% of Mandate Palestine that became Israel left. Some left after hearing of Jewish massacres, others hoping to avoid the fighting and return and others were expelled. I’ve heard historians say that about a third were expelled, a third left and a third stayed. While this sounds reasonable it is impossible to prove what the percentages really were. Up until recently, the Zionist narrative said that they all left voluntarily while the Arab narrative said, and still says, they were all expelled. It is a mute point.

    It is interesting to note that the refugee numbers from 1948-1950 were quite similar. Israel, though a small and poor country solved both its “refugee” problems and the children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren of those “refugees” are my family, friends and neighbors.

    Arab countries initially chose to leave the Palestinian refugees in camps in Gaza (after illegal Egyptian annexation) Judea and Samaria (after illegal Jordanian annexation) and Lebanon. As a child I was taught that this was a cynical ploy to turn these unfortunates into a propaganda tool against Israel and terrorists. Today I doubt this and believe that their Arab brothers just didn’t care.

    On the day of the Nakba the descendants of those “refugees” remember all their tragedies, not accepting partition when it was offered and, after failing to destroy us, not learning to just get on with their own lives. Their tragedy perpetuates itself as the successors of the heirs to those who could never accept any non-Islamic sovereign state anywhere in the region repeat the mistakes of their fathers electing Hamas terrorists as their leadership in the words of Abba Eban, “never missing a chance to miss a chance”.

    Peace will come one day and a solution to all outstanding problems, but only when they learn to love their own children more than they hate us.

    • Daniel, some Arabs are definitely exploiting the “refugees” because when Israel captured Gaza and the West Bank they attempted to resettle the camp occupants in new housing but they occupants were intimidated into declining and so stayed in the camps. Whether this is to make Israel look bad, keep the pity funds flowing, or both, I cannot say.

    • “Up until recently, the Zionist narrative said that they all left voluntarily”

      Not so. The events of Lod and Ramleh (those associated with Rabin and Dayan) have always been very well-known and never denied.

  20. Yup, it’s hard to be sure of the motives of others, especially when they abuse those that by rights they ought to love a be caring for. It’s also hard for people brought up in the West, where human life is an ultimate value which far overides ideology, politics or religion, to imagine that there may be others who see the world differently.

    I would imagine that all the reasons you listed are true, but they could only take preference over basic human needs when, ” their Arab brothers just don’t care”.

    On a more optimistic note the sun is shining and I must leave for Jerusalem to take cooked food for my son and his wife and buy fruit for Shabbat – cherries are in season. In exactly one year from today our youngest will (please G-d) have his barmitzvah. He’ll bless G-d for “choosing us from all the nations and giving us his Torah”.

    Shabbat shalom

  21. Daniel Marks

    Good point. I should have qualified that statement.

  22. Hi Leah,

    I have already made it quite clear that I do not think that this blog is a suitable forum for personal bickering or exchanges of verbal abuse and I have no intention of getting dragged into any kind of slanging match with you – I’m sorry, but you’re going to have to learn to live with that. I also believe that I represent many in saying that your generally negative style of writing – always against someone, never for – becomes tedious quite quickly, but that’s your problem. If I had to advise you, I’d tell you to make a list of ten things that you love or believe in and write about them for a change, we all know what you hate. If you can’t complete the list, maybe you ought top be spending less time online and more in finding friends and loves in the real world.

    You may be right and your forever furious, seemingly irrational utterances might be nothing to do with the two factors I alluded to in earlier postings. I have already acknowledged that my expertise in these areas is extremely limited, to say the least, and a professional may offer a wholly different explanation. Check it out.

    Now I do urge you to leave all personal problems, as much as possible off-blog and try and remain, to the extent that you can, focused on the subject of discussion. I, for my part, have been asked to ignore further “attacks”, which I hope to have no problem doing. Perhaps, if you have really have anything terribly rude to write, but don’t want to bore everyone with it, then mail it directly to me. I don’t promise to reply to everything, but I’ll certainly look through it.

    danielmarks@walla.com

    Have a great week,

  23. In her June 23rd posting, Leah mysteriously refers to Daniel Marks, as “a regrettable blunder and carbuncle on the face of humanity.” Two days later she intensifies her assault by reiterating her “regrettable blunder” slur, and qualifying the carbuncle analogy: “You really are a regrettable blunder and purulent carbuncle.”

    However, with her seemingly unintentional repetition of meaning, Leah may have inadvertently slipped down the greasy pole of Pleonasm or Tautology (a thin line divides the two).

    Would Leah concede that “purulent carbuncle” is a redundant turn of phrase, or would she insist that it is in fact a distinction, in that her “purulent” adjective was describing one of those seldom ever-seen pus-free carbuncles?

  24. Daniel Marks

    I thank the evergreen Kopaloff for his words of wisdom regarding the aforementioned ailment. If I am to be honest, I had never even heard of that abscess, or many others, until it was mentioned on this excellent blog, and only after reading Kopaloff’s captivating comment did I google the term. In other words, for almost a week I knew that I was a carbuncle without having any clear idea as to what type of carbuncle, or indeed, what a carbuncle was.

    From its usage, “..carbuncle on the face of humanity..” I had imagined it to be some kind of unwanted growth or the like. Furthermore, now that it transpires that from at least one commentators point of view I am not in fact a 50-year-old Jewish Israeli man, but rather, a “an abscess larger than a boil, usually with one or more openings draining pus onto the skin.” I am unsure what bearing this realization shall have on my day to day life.

    I’m guessing that my new identity as a carbuncle is meant to be read metaphorically rather than to be taken literally, but if thankfully I know little of abscesses or skin ailments in general, my ignorance regarding what they represent as offensive metaphors is really quite appalling.

    Kopaloff’s point that by definition carbuncles have pus, and thus the adjective purulent becomes somewhat redundant is well taken, however, in defense of the expression I would refer him to the excellent drugspedia.org which defines a carbuncle as:

    “…a purulent acute-necrotic skin and subcutaneous layers inflammation, which is localized around groups of hair follicles and sebaceous gland, which expresses a tendency for spreading quickly to the surrounding tissues.”

    Regards,

  25. Daniel’s summation above was uncharacteristically wanting, since if by definition a carbuncle is purulent, (as confirmed by his in-depth and exhaustive research at Drugspedia.org), then why would Leah choose to label him a “purulent carbuncle”?
    Redundant or distinctive? I leave the reader to draw his/her own conclusions.

  26. Daniel Marks

    I concede the point and graciously acknowledge that if indeed I am a carbuncle, a point I have yet to concede, I must by definition be purulent. Fair enough?

  27. Hullo Leah.

    If you are haveing any carbuncle problems please try to rubbing some camel dung onto!

    All the best,

    Gamil