Galloway and Tamimi team up at QMUL


Tonight there was a two for one offer on as Queen Mary, University of London’s Palestine Society held its inaugural meeting where about 300 students heard George Galloway and Azzam Tamimi speak. Tamimi is notorious for condoning suicide bombers inside Israel.

This was Mile End, the heart of George Galloway’s parliamentary constituency of Bethnal Green and Bow, and so it was a good opportunity for the Respect Party’s parliamentary candidate to make an appearance.

Abjol Miah’s leaflet screams, “I am Bethnal Green and Bow to the Core” before stating on the back “Justice for Palestine”.

Incidentally, George will be the Respect Party’s parliamentary candidate in the neighbouring constituency of Poplar and Limehouse on May 6th, where the Labour majority is just 3,942.

But I am just recovering after a bit of nastiness I was unlucky enough to get involved in. On my way home I passed George outside the college telling some students how Israel’s attack on Iran is getting very close now.

I politely asked him about the Hamas Charter’s reference to killing Jews to which he replied that he doubts it says that. His constant refrain is that as Hamas was democratically elected it should be allowed to govern. All well and good until you read Article 8 of said Charter:

“The Day of Judgement will not come about until Muslims fight the Jews (killing the Jews), when the Jew will hide behind stones and trees. The stones and trees will say O Muslims, O Abdulla, there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him. Only the Gharkad tree, would not do that because it is one of the trees of the Jews.”

I then asked him about the Egyptian border guard shot dead by a Hamas sniper when the Viva Palestina convoy was trying to enter Gaza last month. At that point his heavies stepped in and repeatedly demanded to know my name while also accusing me of trespassing and recording the conversation surreptitiously.

This allowed George to slip away and drive off. In all fairness to George he was actually willing to stand and engage with me but inexplicably his heavies intervened and the situation was getting a bit fractious to say the least.

At the event proper we heard initially from Bellavia Ribeiro-Addy, the NUS Black Students’ Officer. She mentioned the Black Students’ Union pro-Palestine policy and condemned the President of the NUS for both visiting Israel and saying that the majority of students were actually pro-Israel. He is now facing a motion of no-confidence at the next NUS executive meeting.

Next was Azam Tamimi. He congratulated QMUL for going ahead with the meeting after “they had tried to stop me speaking at Cambridge, Manchester, SOAS and Birmingham which shows Israel is losing the war”. He said he is “more semite than any Jew in the world”.

He said that supporters of Israel are ignorant and brainwashed and cited the film Defamation which “shows how Jews are brainwashed into believing they are under threat and that Israel is their protector and therefore they have to defend Israel no matter what”.

Read my lips: "I don't have a problem with the Jews"

He criticised the reporting of his speech at SOAS and told those who had “twisted” his words to listen carefully: “I have no problem with the Jews, I only have a problem with the Zionists”. (What I don’t get is that he opened his speech condemning the Zionists who had come from Europe to escape the Holocaust. Bearing in mind that they were all Jewish it doesn’t follow logically that he doesn’t have a problem with Jews).

He said Hamas is the true representative of the Palestinian people and that the only solution was for “the Israelis to apologise to the Palestinians for all the injustice they have caused them and to ask for a new chapter to begin. Only then would we agree. The Jews have never suffered in Muslim lands, only in Europe and Europe threw them out and sent them to us”.

QMUL students hanging on Tamimi's every word

Finally, George spoke. He started by addressing those of “ill will” who might be present and said they “can email as much as they like and complain to OFCOM, the Charity Commission and the police but if you kill us our sons will pick up the banner”.

“The idea of the liberation of Palestine is unstoppable and non-negotiable. Its time has come and it is an idea that is going to win, be sure about that. Palestine will be free and the Palestinian people will return to their homes.”

“The government of what they call Israel will in the end be defeated. The essence of their ideology is apartheid. It is an insult that the Palestinians are called the terrorists when it is the Zionists who are the terrorists.”

He said anti-Semitism is only a European Christian phenomenon and while the Holocaust was the biggest crime in history the Palestinians are paying the price for it.

He finished off by claiming that the leaders of Britain and America, including George W. Bush, hated the Jews.

During the Q&A a student said that “the biggest crime in history was not the Holocaust as that had only gone on for four years. The biggest crime was against the Palestinians as that has been going on for 60 years”.

That just about summed up the level of discourse tonight.

24 responses to “Galloway and Tamimi team up at QMUL

  1. Marshall Frieze

    What a wonderful world we live in. Galloway’s hatred of Israel is probably spurred on by the fact that his pockets are (allegedly) lined by those with blood on their hands. Wake up, George. The more you go on with your venomous rhetoric, the more you encourage the Pro- Israel lobby to become stronger and stronger.

  2. Tamimi passionately dismissed those who say they Jews control everything. He said such a statement went against his faith as only God controls everything [That statement was actually critically flawed logic. Yes God controls everything but he gives us free will to decide for ourselves what we do. Plus one can also said the Jews are allowed to control everything by the will of God]

    Tamimi said the Jews were reluctant to go to Israel. [From my research there is contradictory evidence available that supports his statement and opposes it] “This was the role of Hitler” Tamimi said. [This is a conspiracy theory , which may actually be right. It’s as if Hitler was created (which he may have been) to persuade the Jews to go to Palestine. The theory is very difficult for me to accept and Tamimi seemed to destroy his own theory]. He fully acknowledged the holocaust of the Jews (and he mentioned the gypsies and handicapped) but he did say the number can be questioned but the number wasn’t important [He obviously didn’t mean it in the sense of ‘ignoring’ the pain of some victims.

    In Questions, he was asked was it Hitler’s purpose to get the Jews to Palestine [I cant remember his answer]. Also how can he assert the Protocols are a fake? – The questioner mentioned he himself had read them (and I think I met this individual before at an economics colloquium about a month back. – if it’s the same guy, I think he’s a pretty knowledgeable guy!) said some of the things in the protocols had come to pass. The same questioner also mentioned that what had happened over the last 100 years or so wasn’t being analysed from an Islamic perspective (I think he was referring to an Islamic eschatological analysis]. Tamimi replied about the protocols that we simply don’t know where they came from. He has a point, but it doesn’t mean they are for sure fake. As for eschatological analysis, he gave an interesting reply. Scholars analysing hadith always interpreted it with relevance to their time. What he means is that people were saying the end of the world was just around the corner for their generation, over 1000 years of this had transpired already and no end time had occurred. A good reply but it’s only a half answer. Because past generations may have been wrong, that doesn’t mean we are wrong now.

    http://lwtc247.wordpress.com/2009/05/09/as-your-head-hits-the-pillow-ask-yourself-what-you-have-done-today-to-fight-zionism/

  3. Thanks for keeping us informed about these things, Richard.

  4. richardmillett

    “Tamimi replied about the protocols that we simply don’t know where they came from. He has a point, but it doesn’t mean they are for sure fake.”

    This quote is the kind of dreadful rhetoric Jews have to put up with from the left. You heard it from zkharya.

  5. ‘The Jews have never suffered in Muslim lands’

    Only when they made life insufferable for or expelled them.

    “I have no problem with the Jews, I only have a problem with the Zionists”.

    i.e. he only has a problem when Jews don’t know their place i.e. as a ‘protected’ minority in an Islamic ’empire’:

    ‘Do not deny the Holocaust he said. The creation of Israel was to stop the emergence of the Islamic ‘empire’ re-emerging.’

    http://lwtc247.wordpress.com/2009/05/09/as-your-head-hits-the-pillow-ask-yourself-what-you-have-done-today-to-fight-zionism/

  6. ‘This quote is the kind of dreadful rhetoric Jews have to put up with from the left. You heard it from zkharya.’

    You do realise I was quoting what the person recording the account wrote: those are his notes? I simply copied and pasted from his web page. I am not sure whom you think I am.

  7. richardmillett

    When you say protected minority you mean dhimmi i.e inferior.

    Then of course one million Jews were ejected from Arab lands with next to nothing having lived there longer than any muslim inhabitant.

    Then the Mufti of Jerusalem went to Germany during the Holocaust to raise a Muslim army to fight alongside the Nazis.

    The list goes on.

  8. richardmillett

    Ah, ok. I wasn’t too clear. Sorry, zkharya.

  9. Yes,

    Tamimi passionately dismissed those who say they Jews control everything. He said such a statement went against his faith as only God controls everything

    is an odd way to deny belief that Jews control everything: without an explicit denial, the logical implication is that they do, albeit under g-d, when he allows them.

  10. richardmillett

    Yes, i agree. Most of what he says is contradictory and disingenuous but because he says it so passionately and angrily his audience seems to lap it up, although i am sure there are also many in the audience who see through the rhetoric and think to themselves “this man is just plain ludicrous”.

  11. Some powerpoint lectures of Tamimi on Zionism:

    http://quis.qub.ac.uk/issni/workshop/PolitalZionism.pdf

    http://quis.qub.ac.uk/issni/workshop/PolitalZionism.pdf

    In the last he is very concerned to assert that Zionism violates Judaism:

    ‘For many centuries, and until the
    advent of nationalism in 18th Century
    Europe and the rise of ‘secular’
    political Zionism, most Jews believed
    that the return to Palestine was
    prohibited and should not be
    attempted until the coming of the
    Messiah.’

    But he is a devout Muslim, and he would only accede to the alleged dictates of Judaism if they accorded with his Islamic agenda. What is interesting is that, unlike Galloway, he doesn’t deny the view of Jews as a people dispossessed of temple, Jerusalem and the land of Israel, since it is also the traditional Islamic view too, albeit as a punishment for their rejection of Jesus and the prophets.

    ‘When the Muslims conquered
    Palestine and took Jerusalem from the
    Romans in 638 AD there was not a
    single Jew in Palestine.’

    Which is pretty spectacular, I am sure you will agree.

  12. richardmillett

    Great, zkharya. Thanks. I will look at them later.
    Yes, it is so nice that Tamimi is so concerned for the Jewish people and to make sure that Judaism isn’t violated by something as vile as Zionism. All Jews have to thank him for that. He is trying to save them from themselves. How altruistic he is!

    There not being a single Jew in Palestine is as crazy as Galloway’s claim last night that when the Jews came to Palestine there was already a long standing Palestinian country there and that it had been wiped off the map (“go check your atlases”).

  13. ‘There not being a single Jew in Palestine is as crazy as Galloway’s claim last night that when the Jews came to Palestine there was already a long standing Palestinian country there and that it had been wiped off the map ‘

    Well, Palestinian Muslims and Christians wanted to keep Jews to a tiny minority in the land (and one highly discriminated against historically, at that).

    When they failed to keep them out, they tried to dispossess then eliminate them. When offered a chance for their own state, they thought it more important to deny the Jews a state, instead.

    But the way Galloway tells it, you’d think it was a kind of crucifixion, the alien, predatory Zionists colonising/crucifying the Palestinian Muslim and Christian national lamb.

    But that is the kind of narrative he and Tamimi are pushing, and it is intended to have the same kind of effect as the original crucifixion story: eliminationist hatred for the alleged crucifiers.

  14. Sorry to write so much, Richard ( I am a PhD student, quite severely disabled and roombound), but this struck me

    “if you kill us our sons will pick up the banner”.

    a) Galloway is clearly identifying himself as the father of Palestinian men and boys.

    b) ‘you’ is addressed to British Jews, as though they are killing his sons.

    That is quite mad, inflammatory and inciteful. It is accusing British Jews of killing George Galloway’s Palestinian ‘sons’.

    That is bringing the conflict to the UK, and setting up British Jews as targets.

  15. richardmillett

    Write away, zkharya, by all means please. This is one of the reasons i started this blog.

    You are right again.

    His full quote was: “If you kill us our sons will pick up the banner. If you kill our sons our daughters will pick up the banner. If you kill our daughters others will pick up the banner.”

    We have to be careful here though about your point b. He will say that people of “ill will”, i.e “you”, are not necessarily Jewish. He always says that you don’t have to be jewish to be a zionist.

    That said you are absolutely right about bringing the conflict to the UK. It is very threatening indeed and silences all those who would like to put Israel’s case, due to the highly intimidatory atmosphere in our universities.

  16. ‘We have to be careful here though about your point b. He will say that people of “ill will”, i.e “you”, are not necessarily Jewish. He always says that you don’t have to be jewish to be a zionist.’

    OK, but he’s equating those who complain about his and Tamimi’s hate speech with those who allegedly kill ‘his’ sons and daughters.

    That is mad and inflammatory enough. It’s equating those who complain with allege murderers of his children.

    Remember his suing that radio station for the parody of him saying ‘kill the Jews, kill the Jews’?

    Most of those who complain about his and Tamimi’s hate speech are Jews. And he’s accusing them of murder.

    That is incitement to hate, pure and simple. But than hate. ‘Take up the banner’: that is nationalist, war talk. The banner is a martial, nationalist emblem.

    He is deliberating imitating Arab and Islamic nationalist rhetoric, intended to stir up Arab and Islamic nationalist feeling.

  17. richardmillett

    zkharya, what can i say? Yes, i agree. I think it is ultra-inflammatory and i truly believe someone is going to get seriously hurt because of it.

    One person put Israel’s point last night. It was a febrile atmosphere and even i felt intimidated but this person spoke up. Very few dare to speak up or even go to these meetings but the powers that be let these meetings carry on because they are afraid to intervene and they think it is all about “freedom of speech”.

    I hope i am proved wrong but it won’t end very nicely as Ed Husain wrote about in The Islamist. He was a part of this same culture some 10 years ago and someone ended up getting killed then. Have you read it?

  18. I haven’t, though I have heard good things of it. To be honest, I don’t really follow the issue of Islamicism much, bar what I read on HP. White, Sizer, Tamimi and Galloway interest me, and let’s not go over board on the ‘interest’, more of a haven’t got anything better to do at the time, because of the religio-ethno-nationalist aspect.

  19. richardmillett

    Yes, i agree. It is kind of interesting to listen to. It is like watching a horror movie, which i love anyway!

  20. Excellent blog!

    I realise this may not help, Richard – but the Galloway/Tamimi malaise is indicative of how the UK’s gone down the tubes in the interests of celebrating diversity and multiculturalism.

    Maybe the way forward is to get the old British “mojo” back. How? Any suggestions?

  21. richardmillett

    Oh, no don’t suggest that, Chamuda. We might get accused of racism.

    In the interests of freedom of speech we must allow these people to say what they want so they can rile up the crowds and allow idiots in the audience to stand up and say that the Holocaust wasn’t the biggest crime in history “because it only lasted for 4 years compared to the Palestinians who have been suffering for 60”.

  22. You failed to mention GG’s outright condemnation at this meeting of the Holocaust as the greatest crime in history.
    I was on the Viva Palestina convoy; the evolving thought processes of a Grumpy Old Man aka Aging Hippie aka Political Activist are on my blog.
    “Jaw, jaw is always better thna war, war.”

  23. richardmillett

    Hi Richard,
    Thanks. I will have a look later. It is a shame that many people don’t listen to George in that respect then.

    As I state at the end of my post there was the student at the Q&A who said that the Holocaust wasn’t the greatest crime in history as it only lasted for 4 years, but the greatest crime in history was what is happening to the Palestinians as that has gone on for 60 years.

    Anyway George always states that the Palestinians are paying for what happened to the Jews, which is a totally incorrect assertion. They are paying for the decisions their own leaders have taken.

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