Tag Archives: Karma Nabulsi

Jon Snow lunges for my phone while I question him about his “Jewish lobby” comment.

Ilan Pappe, Peter Kosminsky, Jon Snow, Karma Nabulsi, Rosemary Hollis at LSE.

Ilan Pappe, Peter Kosminsky, Jon Snow, Karma Nabulsi, Rosemary Hollis at LSE.

Last night Channel 4 news presenter Jon Snow was at the London School of Economics to chair a panel of hardcore anti-Israel polemicists but as I was questioning him face to face about his own use of the term “the Jewish lobby” (Clip 1 below) he violently grabbed my mobile phone attempting to dislodge it from my hand accusing me of trying to secretly record our conversation. He then repeatedly called me “a creep” and claimed a breach of his human rights.

He had been explaining to me that “the Jewish lobby” is a common term in America. I asked him if he would use the term “the Muslim lobby” to which he replied that he would.

This was how the event itself was described:

On this panel discussion, chaired by Jon Snow of Channel 4 News, the speakers will discuss aspects of the current situation in Palestine, including: Palestinian domestic politics, Israel’s position, the international dimension of the impasse and the insights into the conflict provided by film-making.

I went mainly to hear Peter Kosminsky, director of Channel 4’s drama series The Promise which portrayed Jews in British Mandate Palestine and contemporary Israel by using anti-Semitic stereotypes. For example, Israeli Jews were shown to be stunningly wealthy, and there were lines like these spoken by a British soldier:

“The Jews and Arabs have been living here in relative harmony for years. But our victory over the Germans has turned the trickle of Jews coming to this land into a flood. You must understand, the Jews see it as their holy land. But the Arabs, who have been here for over a thousand years, see them as stealing their land. Our job is to keep the two sides apart…..”

and

“After Bergen Belsen, I thought that the Jews deserved a state, but now I’m not so sure…. Their precious state has been born in violence and cruelty to its neighbours, and I’m not sure I want it to prosper….”

Last night Kosminsky said that after the series had aired:

“Nothing prepared me for the level of vitriol that was going to drop on me from the Zionist lobby…personal, vicious stuff came my way….If I choose to criticise my country, and I often do, nobody calls me ‘a racist’. They accept that it’s a legitimate thing in a free society to criticise the political and diplomatic behaviour, the domestic and foreign policies of a sovereign state. It just means that you disagree with its political behaviour. But if you’re Jewish, as I am, and you criticise the domestic and/or foreign policy of the sovereign state of Israel you are immediately called an anti-Semite. Very clever isn’t it.” (Clip 2)

No it’s not clever actually because Kosminsky doesn’t just “disagree with its political behaviour”. He disagrees with Israel’s existence and calls for Jews in Israel to be boycotted (presumably he doesn’t wish those of other religions in Israel to be boycotted). He said:

“the boycott creates so much anger in Israelis. They really hate the idea, particularly the academic boycott, which suggests to me it would probably be quite effective. So I think, yes, we should do it.” (Clip 3)

I hear the Nazis also boycotted Jews. In the 1930s it was considered anti-Semitic but apparently in 2013 it isn’t.

On America’s support for Israel and the similarity of the creation of both countries he said:

“this is why America finds it so hard to take a stand against the illegality and the disgusting behaviour of the state of Israel, because that’s how they (the Americans) came into existence, guys!” (clip 4)

There was also a lengthy discussion on how much Jews were hated by America and Britain, this being the main driver by these countries to create Israel in order to get Jews to go there instead.

Kosminsky put it like this:

“America was very keen to strong arm Britain into accepting a Jewish-controlled state in what had been Palestine because…they really didn’t want any more Jews in New York, please.” (clip 4 also)

As for Rosemary Hollis, former director of research at Chatham House, she claimed that at the same time Lord Balfour was drafting the Balfour Declaration he was also driving anti-Jewish immigration legislation through Parliament. (clip 5)

Hollis also claimed that it wasn’t the Jews that invented Jewish nationalism but “the Europeans”. She said “it was the Europeans who decided somehow that Judaism was something above and beyond a religion”. Incredible! Who was Theodore Herzl anyway and that book he published in 1896. Der Judenstaat, anyone?

Jon Snow didn’t hold back either but suggested that Britain might well have delayed bombing the railway lines to the concentration camps because of Britain’s hatred of Jews. (clip 6)

Snow had also started the evening claiming that there was “Palestine fatigue” in the media (clip 7). Palestine fatigue! Has he not picked up The Independent or The Guardian recently or watched his own beloved Channel 4 which aired The Promise and many other programes about the Palestinians including one being aired while we were at the event!

To round things off nicely Ilan Pappe implicitly compared Israel to Nazi Germany (clip 8). He said Israel is beginning to look like “your own worst enemy” in its obsession with having as many Jews in Israel as possible.

Meanwhile, Karma Nabulsi spent most of the evening calling for the so-called “right of return”, commonly known as a pretext to the demographic destruction of the Jewish state. Nothing new there then from ex-PLO Ms Nabulsi.

(Read Jonathan Hoffman’s account of the event here)

Clips from the event (customer warning: may contain anti-Semitism)

Clip 1:

(Snow mentions “the Jewish lobby” at 1 min 34 secs.)

Clip 2:

Clip 3:

Clip 4:

Clip 5:

Clip 6:

Clip 7:

Clip 8:

Palileaks, The Guardian and incitement to murder.

One can never accuse The Guardian of missing an opportunity to bash Israel and the Palestine Papers is no exception.

I don’t think that for a quick buck the paper should have published the secret Annapolis negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians.

In yesterday’s paper Jonathan Freedland argues that the leaks will “prepare Palestinian public opinion for the painful concessions that peace will, one distant day, require” and are “already having a useful impact in Israel – prompting a clutch of influential figures to realise there is a partner on the Palestinian side.”

We will see but my imminent fear is for the Palestinian chief negotiators Mahmoud Abbas, Saeb Erekat and Abu Ala.

Although they were negotiating with the Israelis virtually the same terms that Yasser Arafat rejected back in 2000 The Guardian thinks it has got a real scoop.

But nothing was concluded. Just like in 2000, after seven years of negotiations, no deal was signed. Arafat was offered virtually the same deal on refugees, Jerusalem and the settlements as Abbas, Erekat and Ala seem to have agreed with Livni and co.

Although possible, it is doubtful they would have dared to sign the deal after the assassinations of President Sadat and Prime Minister Rabin at the hands of their own countrymen. Arafat couldn’t bring himself to do it.

So Freedland might be right that Palestinian public opinion is now prepared but at what personal cost to the Palestinians negotiators? Surely Abbas, Erekat and Ala had the right to decide the strategy of how to prepare the Palestinians for such huge concessions without The Guardian taking the decision out of these men’s hands and putting them at such great risk.

What risk was spelled out loud and clear also in yesterday’s paper by Osama Hamdan of Hamas.

Hamdan says:

“As an immediate response to these revelations, we in Hamas have begun a series of communications and meetings with Palestinian factions and prominent personalities to discuss practical measures. It is our responsibility to regain the initiative in order to protect our cause and isolate those who have betrayed it.”

We all know what Hamas means by “isolate”.

No Palestinian negotiator would dare step forward now.

And Palestinian academics like Ghada Karmi and Karma Nabulsi continue to pollute the cause of peace by perverting the words of UN resolution 194. So although it will never happen the Palestinians have bought the notion that they are refugees with a right to go to Israel and destroy it by force of numbers.

Naturally, on Monday The Guardian published an article by Karma Nabulsi, who talks of the right of return for “millions of Palestinian refugees”, and on Tuesday one by Karmi, The Right of return matters.

Yet, despite giving platforms to Hamdam, Karmi and Nabulsi Tuesday’s Guardian editorial has the cheek to submit that “A two state solution remains the only show in town.”

What a confused newspaper it is; it talks of a two-state solution while giving platforms to people committed to Israel’s destruction.

Or maybe not so confused. I’ve read some anti-Israel letters before but nothing like this one published yesterday:

“The revelations in detail (Report, 25 January) of the intransigent greed, the escape from decency, of Israeli governments in negotiation with our selected leaders of the Palestinians, serve one purpose among others. They provide a further part of what is now an overwhelming argument for a certain proposition. It is that the Palestinians have a moral right to their terrorism within historic Palestine against neo-Zionism. The latter, neither Zionism nor of course Jewishness, is the taking from the Palestinians of at least their autonomy in the last one-fifth of their historic homeland. Terrorism, as in this case, can as exactly be self-defence, a freedom struggle, martyrdom, the conclusion of an argument based on true humanity, etc.”

If “the Palestinians have a moral right to their terrorism” isn’t incitement to murder then I don’t know what is.

I doubt The Guardian would publish a letter from someone condoning the 7/7 London tube bombings because British troops were in Iraq and Afghanistan at the time. Innocent Israeli men, women and children are fair game though.

Surely this must go to the Press Complaints Commission. It surpasses the boundaries of freedom of speech and is deeply racist.

Ahava feels the heat

Thirty anti-Israel protesters congregated outside Ahava in Covent Garden for two hours on Sunday handing out leaflets and singing anti-Israel slogans. There was, as ever, a small counter-demonstration.

The incessant chants of “Israeli mud, Palestinian blood” disturb adjacent shop-owners and residents who might now ask Ahava’s landlords not to renew Ahava’s lease.

Obviously this is unfair. The protests, that take place every two weeks now, have nothing to do with Ahava. It is a perfectly legitimate business that provides a valid service to a strong customer base.

The protesters handed out leaflets sponsored by the Palestine Solidarity Campaign and Boycott Israeli Goods that call for the banning of “illegal settlement produce”. International Solidarity Campaign is also an organiser.

But as with all of these protests, it isn’t really about settlement produce.

An organisation called “Boycott Israeli Goods” gives away the true nature of the protests and when you start speaking to the protesters the settlements are the last thing they mention.

They talk of the ethnic cleansing of 750,000 Arabs from Israel in 1948, the seige of Gaza and the supposedly awful treatment of Palestinian Israelis.

As for the latter I am sure that there is much more than Israel can do to alleviate poor conditions for many of the 1.2 million Palestinian Israelis that live inside Israel.

But many of them do very well economically and enjoy all social freedoms. Such freedoms they could only dream of if they lived under other Arab governments, including a Palestinian one. Recently, Islamic extremists destroyed a United Nations summer camp for children in Gaza.

As for “ethnic cleansing” I am still trying to get my head around the arithmetic of how 600,000 Jews could possibly ethnically cleanse 750,000 Palestinians while fighting both them and the invading armies of Jordan, Syria, Egypt, Iraq and Lebanon.

And as for the siege, the protesters forget that it is enforced by Egypt also. Most Israelis are unhappy with such a “siege” but know the tragic consequences of allowing Hamas to appropriate imported materials meant for the people of Gaza. This would allow Hamas to quickly replenish its deadly stock of Kassam rockets.

Even the leaflets the protesters hand out make no pretence that this is only about settlement produce.

The leaflets state: “This call for a ban on illegal settlement produce is part of a campaign to boycott all Israeli goods until Israel abides by international law and respects human rights.”

So now, it seems, anyone can find a political issue they are passionate about and harrass a legitimate business connected with that issue just to make a point. If Ahava closes, which now seems quite possible, people will lose their jobs and livelihoods.

Ahava’s manager came out towards the end of the protest to speak to the protesters and to explain this point but, as polite as they were, they just explained back to her that she is “an innocent bystander in all this” and that “there’s a far bigger cause at stake”.

Would these self-styled “peace activists” stand outside a Palestinian owned business protesting Hamas’ atrocities against not just innocent Israeli civilians but Palestinian opposition activists? “Of course,” they claim, “we don’t support Hamas but the Palestinians have a right to elect who they wish.”

But electing a government doesn’t mean that government has the right to fire thousands of Kassam rockets into Israel and summarily execute its own people.

The PSC’s patrons are: Jenny Tonge, Tony Benn, Victoria Brittain, Julie Christie, Caryl Churchill, Jeremy Corbyn, Bob Crow, William Dalrymple, Reverend Garth Hewitt, Dr Ghada Karmi, Bruce Kent, Karma Nabulsi, Illan Pappe and Benjamin Zephaniah.

However much these people disagree with Israel’s policies, and even its very existence, surely the likes of Socialists Tony Benn and Bob Crow must be able to see the injustice of bullying a legitimate business in order to close it down with the consequent loss of jobs. Maybe just not when it comes to Israeli workers.

Section 11 of the Human Rights Act emphasises the right to peaceful assembly but what takes place outside Ahava is not peaceful. Shoppers quickly pass Ahava and the adjacent shops and restaurants to avoid the terrible noise. Takings of all businesses in the vicinity are down.

And who would wish to walk into a shop like Ahava that is flanked by four police officers and a security guard there to stop the inevitable invasion that would take place if they were absent (as happened on the first occasion these protesters turned up outside Ahava)?

Sadly, Britain is a society that protects the human rights of suspected al-Qaida terrorists more than those of employers and employees wishing to earn a living here.