The Palestine Solidarity Campaign cannot kick its smearing-the-Holocaust habit. A banner proclaiming the media is, basically, Jewish-controlled and that Jews are, basically, Nazis (see above) was proudly paraded on the PSC’s anti-Balfour Declaration march through London today. There was no objection to it from any PSC stewards.
Added to that a woman wearing a Palestinian flag kept repeating there were “concentration camps” in Palestinian villages (part 1 below) and repeatedly accused a Jewish man holding a British flag of being “the anti-Christ” (part 2 below):
As the some 3,000 PSC activists proceeded down Oxford Street a group of about 30 pro-Israel campaigners stepped into the road in front of the march and put a stop to it for about 30 minutes before the police finally moved everyone on allowing the protest to end up in Parliament Square where it was addressed by Jeremy Corbyn MP and Diane Abbott MP (via a live link), Ken Loach, Andy Slaughter MP, Salma Yaqoob and Dave Randall, amongst others.
The pro-Israel group were also called “Zionist pigs” by PSC activists but here they are in their full glory:
More peaceful disruptions to these anti-Semitic marches through London will undoubtedly rightly follow.
Here are some other photos from the PSC march. As you can see the slogans incorporate Holocaust smearing, the Star of David, the blood libel, child killing, supporting violence against Israelis and also willing Israel’s destruction and are, of course, the slogans the above-named British politicians and celebrities will have stood in front of while addressing the PSC supporters in Parliament Square.
That’s quite a chilling prospect for Britain’s 280,000 Jews:
Rt Rev Michael Langrish appealing for money for Palestinians in northern Israel’s “refugee camps”.
Historian Avi Shlaim was invited to speak on Balfour and Palestine: From Balfour to May on Tuesday night at St James’s Church in central London.
St James’s is a church hostile to Israel and no expense is spared. In 2013 St James’s dedicated its entire Christmas to demonising Israel’s security wall at a cost of £30,000.
St James’s knows how to harness extremists’ hatred for Israel and on the way out on Tuesday The Rev Lucy Winkett was beaming with pride at seeing 300 people in her church. One can only imagine the usual turnout on Sunday mornings.
Su McClellan, of Embrace the Middle East (see below), set the dire tone for the evening when she described Shlaim’s family as simply having “left Iraq for Israel for various reasons”.
Those “various reasons” might have included the Farhud massacre visited on Baghdad’s Jewish community in 1941 which was followed up with continued oppression and confiscation of property by the Iraqi government. Shlaim’s father lost everything it seems. None of this was mentioned.
Farhud and Hamas were the main words totally absent from Shlaim’s talk. He blamed the lack of peace between Israel and the Palestinians solely on Israel. He claimed “settlements only are continuing the conflict.”
Shlaim seems proud to be a part of the British establishment. Throughout the evening he repeated that he married the great-grand-daughter of David Lloyd George and said that although “his wife was proud of her great-grand-father she was ashamed of the role he played in Palestine”. Palestine, he said, had been “wiped off the map”.
Lloyd George was Britain’s PM at the time of the Balfour Declaration which promised a national home to the Jewish people “in Palestine”. Shlaim ascribed the Declaration to Lloyd George’s “anti-semitic view that the Jews were uniquely influential.”
Meanwhile, Shlaim repeated Christian metaphors to appeal to his audience. He condemned Winston Churchill as a “dog in a manger” for overly praising Jews during the 1936 Peel Commission and he criticised the “old historians who stick to Israel’s beginning as one of immaculate conception”.
Quite incredibly Shlaim then praised Ilan Pappe as his inspiration. Pappe has been described by Benny Morris as “one of the world’s sloppiest historians”. Pappe has also been caught on film agreeing propaganda may be more important than facts.
Shlaim then claimed the Balfour Declaration meant Palestine had been “twice promised”, having already been promised by the British to the leader of the Arab world, via an exchange of letters, in return for Arabs fighting the Muslim Ottomans during World War One.
Shlaim continued that the “intrusion of a foreign entity in the shape of the Zionist movement showed a total disregard (by the British) for the indigenous population”.
He concluded by praising the Palestine Solidarity Campaign (PSC dedicates itself to the demonisation and eradication of Israel) and saying that only recognition of a Palestinian state as a UN member can “save Israel from itself”.
During the Q&A Shlaim defended the Labour Party against “alleged anti-semitism within the Labour Party” and praised Jeremy Corbyn (warning: this kicks off a bit):
At the end Rt Rev Michael Langrish gave a fundraising appeal for the church’s Embrace the Middle East charity to raise money for the Palestinians (this despite the Palestinian Authority having paid out $1bn to Palestinian terrorists over the last four years).
Last year the appeal was for Gaza. This year it was for Palestinians in the “occupied West Bank” and….Israel.
According to Langrish “In Israel, many Palestinian girls living in the northern city of Acre, families who lost their homes in that 1948 war, live in a cramped neighbourhood that resembles a refugee camp in all but name…Many of them have been abused in various ways. They battle mental illness. They face pressure to drop out of school and marry young.”
Here he is:
If only St James’s Church gave such thought and money to those really struggling in Britain or, dare one suggest, Syria.
Arthur Goodman, Lindsey German, Walter Wolfgang, John Rose, chairperson, Weyman Bennett, Tariq Ali at ULU last night.
Just when you think you have heard it all along comes Tariq Ali to lecture Israelis on how the end of the Jewish state will benefit not only Palestinians but Israelis as well.
For Ali the main problem in Europe isn’t anti-Semitism but Islamophobia. He admitted there was some anti-Semitism in the Arab world but it was only brought about by reaction to Israel and that once Israel has disappeared antisemitism will disappear.
Ali was speaking last night at the University of London’s Student Union in front of an audience of 300 alongside anti-Israel author John Rose, Weyman Bennett of Unite Against Fascism, Lindsey German of Stop the War Coalition, Arthur Goodman of Jews for Justice for Palestinians and “As a Jew” activist Walter Wolfgang .
The main message of the evening was that antisemitism is being used merely to attack Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn and to silence all criticism of Israel (aka the Livingstone formulation). Both John Rose and Ali then went on to explicitly call for the demise of Israel.
On entering we were handed an unsigned leaflet headed “Labour Jews Assert” which stated that “Some people…are wielding ‘antisemitism’ allegations as a stick to beat the Corbyn leadership”. Luckily, Jonathan Hoffman was on hand to circulate printed copies of the EUMC Working Definition of Antisemitism. EUMC shows that what these people claim isn’t antisemitism actually is!
Arthur Goodman said it wasn’t surprising that people conflate Jews and Israel when the British Jewish establishment says all Jews support Israel and Netanyahu says Israel represents all Jews.
He said that Jewish groups shouldn’t be allowed to define what antisemitism is as they have a vested interest. He called for an objective definition instead before going on to outrageously claim that Israel “ethnically cleansed” the Palestinians in 1948.
Goodman said that although the same had happened to the indigenous people of America their dispossession had finished long ago so it was wrong to revive any such similarity today. And he said for most UK Jews a love of Israel is part of their identity and so they see criticism of Israel as criticism of them.
Weymann Bennett said that Left was in the forefront of fighting antisemitism and gave as an example UAF’s protests against the leader of Jobbik when he visited the UK and he said similar protests will take place when Marine Le Pen visits.
Lindsey German didn’t like the fact that Israel’s new Ambassador Mark Regev was immediately allowed on Andrew Marr’s BBC show and said that this is going to happen a lot now (I hope she’s right!).
And she said that Zionism is a political ideology criticism of which should be allowed. She also said that many Jews do not support what Israel does (she didn’t say many Muslim people also don’t support what the Palestinians do).
Walter Wolfgang told us he was speaking “As a Jew”. He gave us his own history of Zionism; he quoted Ahad Ha’am who, he said, wanted merely a cultural as opposed to a political centre in historic Israel, he (wrongly) claimed that in 1948 the Palestinians were “driven out of their habitations” and he (wrongly) asserted that Jabotinsky wanted Israel established by force of arms.
Wolfgang wanted Israel to exist but within the (indefensible) 1948-1967 ceasefire lines and a just settlement for “Palestinian refugees”.
The villains with the biggest lies of the evening were John Rose and Tariq Ali.
Ali (wrongly) claimed it was Israeli government policy to brand everyone who criticises Israel as antisemitic (see clip 1 below).
He also said that the way the Holocaust is “taught as a unique crime is not that helpful” because there were other crimes like in the Congo and if these other crimes are not taught in schools then no one will understand what the Muslims are suffering today (clip 2). And he continued:
“If what is being done with Muslim communities today were being done to the Jews again how many would tolerate it? Very few. And these are the double standards.” (clip 2)
He said that antisemitism is used to stop any campaigning against Israel but if there was a so-called one state solution then antisemitism and criticism of Israel would disappear and that Israelis and their children and grandchildren would benefit (clip 3).
Rose said he had spoken to an Israeli archaeologist who said the “Palestinians had all become Islamic terrorists”. This, Rose claimed, was symptomatic of the levels of racism in Israeli society today (clip 4).
Rose wanted (clip 5) there to be one person-one vote for Israelis and Palestinians including the so-called Palestinian refugees (90% of whom are not refugees at all by the way). Obviously Israelis would be outvoted so Rose is basically calling for the establishment of a 57th Muslim state in place of the only Jewish one.
Rose claimed that calling for a so-called one state solution isn’t antisemitic. However, in my opinion, denying the Jewish people their only state in their historic homeland (even when it could still be alongside a Palestinian one) can only be antisemitic especially when a boycott of Israel is also called for.
The superb Jonathan Hoffman took to the microphone during the Q&A to articulate Israel’s case under immense pressure (clip 6).
Last night there was no mention of Hamas and Hezbollah and their genocidal intent to destroy Israel and every Jewish person worldwide. Neither was it mentioned that Hezbollah flags are openly on display at Palestine Solidarity Campaign and Stop The War Campaign protests in London and that the Holocaust is flagrantly traduced.
This tells you ALL you need to know about PSC and STWC types however “anti-racist” they try to claim they are.
Liz Kendall gives her closing appeal to become Labour leader as Corbyn and Jonathan Freedland (chairing) listen
Jeremy Corbyn laid into Israel at the Labour Leadership hustings at JW3 on Monday night and admitted he met Hamas but said “you have to have talks with everybody to bring about a long term settlement”.
In that case when will he meet Islamic State?
Corbyn claimed Israel had “put Gaza under siege” and that there were “serious issues concerning the bombardment of Gaza, the failure to reconstruct Gaza, the level of poverty and unemployment that exists in Gaza and there are also questions of children held in Israeli prisons. And there are also questions of the number of African refugees that are not being allowed into Israel and that are being deported from Israel.”
Children in Israeli prisons? For anti-Israel activists a “child” is anyone under 18 and these “children” may have thrown stones at a car with intent to murder its occupants, so they are not necessarily as angelic as Corbyn seems to imply.
Corbyn said he supported an arms boycott of Israel and a boycott of settlement products but said he did not support an academic boycott or an economic boycott of “Israel proper”.
On the issue of calling Hezbollah and Hamas “friends” at a House of Commons event Corbyn claimed he was just being “inclusive” but said that didn’t mean he agreed with the “social attitudes, social policies or legal views of those organisations” and claimed he has made that clear to them when he has met them.
He was also asked whether he would withdraw his support for the Stop The War Coalition due to its sponsorship of the Al Quds Day annual demonstration through London where Hezbollah flags are waved and which is a festival of hatred. Corbyn replied that it is “not designed to be a festival of hatred”.
For an organisation of which he is the Chair he is pretty ignorant of the hatred it helps to incite on the streets of London.
Corbyn also stated that the Balfour Declaration was “imposed by some of the Jewish members of the cabinet” at the time but has since backtracked to claim that he meant to say “opposed”. It is worrying that a potential leader can get something so wrong from what he meant to say.
As for Liz Kendall, Andy Burnham and Yvette Cooper who are the other Labour leadership contenders they all condemned Corbyn’s use of “friends” to describe Hamas and Hezbollah. Cooper said that language is very important when discussing terrorists. Burnham said he would have sanctioned Corbyn for such language.
Meanwhile, Burnham said that he had voted in favour of the “Palestine” recognition resolution last year only because the vote had been whipped by Labour but that the first country he would visit on becoming leader would be Israel.
Kendall said that the vote was not whipped and that she had abstained because passing resolutions either at the House of Commons or the UN wasn’t the right way to achieve peace and a two state solution which should come about only via negotiations. She said she was a friend of Israel.
Finally, there was a lot applause for Corbyn but that can be explained by the many anti-Israel activists I recognised in the audience including ex-Labour MP Martin Linton.
Clips from Monday’s JW3 event:
Jeremy Corbyn attempts to explain away his description of Hamas and Hezbollah as “friends”:
Corbyn says Jewish cabinet members “imposed” Balfour Declaration:
Corbyn slams Israel and its holding of “children” in prison:
Opening remarks of each contender. Liz Kendall explains why she abstained on “Palestine” recognition resolution:
Last week I posted about David Thring, considered a “neo-Nazi”, who spoke at a Max Blumenthal event in the British Parliament about Israel. The event was sponsored by Jeremy Corbyn MP.
Thring’s past behaviour probably needed more of an explanation so here is a clip of some of his past activities. In the beginning is audio of one of the organisers of the event warmly inviting Thring up to the stage to speak.
Pertinent questions that the clip asks is why was a “neo-Nazi” invited by the organisers to speak at an anti-Israel event in Parliament and when will opposition to the Jewish state be seen for what it really is.
Jeremy Corbyn MP, PSC’s Hugh Lanning, Manuel Hassassian in Parliament last night.
Last night Manuel Hassassian, the Palestinian “Ambassador” to the UK, said he believes that the Jews are the children of God because nobody is stopping them from building their “messianic dream of Eretz Israel”. He called for a “one state solution” and looked forward to the world’s Muslim population reaching two billion.
He was speaking in Parliament at the Palestine Solidarity Campaign’s 4 years on from Israel’s ‘Operation Cast Lead’: Israel’s siege and attacks continue. Also speaking were Labour’s Shadow Justice Minister Andy Slaughter MP and Liberal Democrat MP Sarah Teather. Labour MP Jeremy Corbyn played host.
Addressing an audience of some 100 people Hassassian declared:
“We, the Palestinians, the most highly educated and intellectual in the Middle East, are still struggling for the basic right of self-determination. What an irony. How long are we going to suffer and be patient with Israel? You know I’m reaching the conclusion that the Jews are the children of God, the only children of God and the Promised Land is being paid by God! I have started to believe this because nobody is stopping Israel building its messianic dream of Eretz Israel to the point I believe that maybe God is on their side. Maybe God is partial on this issue.”
Then removing his “PLO and Palestinian Authority hat” he continued:
“There is no two state solution. Democracies don’t fight each other. If Israel is a democracy I would claim that the Palestinians are also a democracy. If democracies cannot fight each other then why not have one state?; one man, one vote.”
On Israel’s future he said:
“Israel will never continue to exist as a pariah state. Israel could never continue to fight wars against the Palestinians, against the Arabs and the Muslims. The United States is not going to be Israel’s strategic ally for time immemorial. And today we have 1.5 billion Muslims. In 20 years we will have 2 billion. And those 2 billion, forget about politics, from a religious perspective will not allow Israel to continue desecrating their religious rights (in Jerusalem). And then what?”
And on what could have been Hassassian said:
“What does Israel want? In 2002 the Arabs gave them the Arab Peace Initiative. Relinquishing territories occupied in 1967 would have led to normalisation of relations with Israel. If the Israelis had accepted that the flag of Israel would have been hoisted in Mecca, in Iran, in Tehran! If they had accepted. But Israel does not want peace. Israel nurtures on conflict, and the Zionist Ideology is to have the entire West Bank, the entire Palestine.”
Andy Slaughter MP accused Israel of deliberately killing whole Palestinian families and controlling the Palestinians’ calorie count. He said Israel supplied Palestinians just enough to stop them from starving and he described, what he called, Israel’s failure to supply clean water, electricity and decent homes as “collective punishment”.
Sarah Teather MP accused Israel of “wiping out five thousand homes” in one part of Gaza alone and that nothing could justify this. She said that Israel must let “basic goods” into Gaza.
PSC Chair Hugh Lanning said he noticed that during Operation Cast Lead CNN only reported on the Hamas rockets. Lanning then claimed that “while the occupation and siege continues Israel is ALWAYS the aggressor”. He also claimed that Israel had banned 180 life saving medicines from Gazan hospitals “because they might save lives”.
Jeremy Corbyn spoke about Gazans who had “never known the ability to move out of Gaza”. Ironically, he then introduced us to Rania Al-Najjar who has just completed a Masters in International Relations at London’s City University. Rania is from Gaza. She said, inter alia, that there are no economic opportunities in Gaza and that unemployment there is the highest in the world, relatively.
We then heard from two “1948 Palestinians” who live in Israel. One of them had spent three spells in Israeli prisons, his sentences ranging from one to eight years. He spoke about the remaining prisoners who had forgotten what the sky and moon look like and how they had not touched the hands of their mothers or children for many years.
Finally, Hugh Lanning announced that there will be a “controversial PSC conference” on April 13th where there will be “an open dialogue with the people of Gaza and their leaders”.
Remember during the Olympics when Britain celebrated how multicultural we are and how we accept people of all cultures and races? Well, it seems, the party is already over.
Britain’s Jews are made to feel especially uncomfortable. Today, yet again, Hezbollah supporters marched through the streets of London for the Khomeini inspired Al Quds Day. Instead of congregating in Trafalgar Square like last year, they assembled outside the American Embassy.
Hezbollah has been involved in a worldwide campaign to murder as many Jews as possible. It started in Argentina in the early 1990s when both the Israeli consulate and a Jewish community centre were bombed by Hezbollah leaving hundreds of Jews and non-Jews dead and disabled. And recently in Bulgaria Hezbollah blew up a bus full of young Israeli tourists leaving many dead and crippled.
This is all fully in line with Hassan Nasrallah’s statements that Jews are descended from pigs and apes and if the world’s Jews gathered in Israel it would save Hezbollah the effort of going after them worldwide.
Last year Hezbollah activists held up signs proclaiming “Death to Israel”, “Israel Your Days Are Numbered” and “For there to be peace Israel must be destroyed”. Today the disingenuously named Islamic Human Rights Commission, a registered charity, was allowed to repeat the exercise.
I wasn’t there for very long today. Once again I was quietly trying to film proceedings. No one recognised me until an anti-Ahava activist tipped off stewards from the Islamic Human Rights Commission who jostled me and complained to the police who, in turn, ushered me away.
After the assembled crowd was urged to chant “Zionism must go” and “From The River to the Sea Palestine Will be Free” I saw both Reverend Stephen Sizer and Labour MP Jeremy Corbyn address it.
Leaflets sponsored by INMINDS.co.uk were handed out. They read, inter alia, “The world ended Nazism and Apartheid, isn’t it time to end the suffering of the Palestinians?” and “Israeli soldiers of the Givati Brigade ordered around 100 people in to the Wa’el Samouni house at gunpoint. They then bombed the house killing 29 people. They then denied emergency crews access to the house for four days, shooting at ambulance drivers if they approached the house. In case anyone mistook the intent of the Givati in this crime, they left a message on one of the remaining walls of the house, daubed in Hebrew it read ‘The Only good Arab is a Dead Arab.'”
One has to ask why does Britain rightly ban groups like Muslims Against Crusades for causing public outrage but not Hezbollah which is actively attempting to murder Jews worldwide. Are Britain’s Jews deemed so dispensable?
I think we know the answer by now.
Clips and photos:
Al Quds Day London 2012. So much for “multi-cultural Britain”.
Someone’s in love with Hezbollah.
Giving me the evils.
Racism descends on a sunny London.
The Green Party?
Neturei Karta at their usual pre-Shabbat hate-fest.
“Daddy, daddy can we go to another hate-fest today?”
Kaufman calls for boycott of Israel. Andy Slaughter on his left and Jeremy Corbyn (scratching).
There were more surreal ongoings at Parliament on Monday night when the Palestinian Return Centre held a seminar on the Palestinian refugees, which was attended by four Labour MPs.
I was banned from filming and photographing by the organisers eventhough there were two camera crews in the room, one from Lebanon, and about 10 other people in the audience filming or taking photos.
Then at the end of the event Jonathan Hoffman and I were met by four police officers. Jonathan was taken aside by an officer and told that during the meeting he had said that the MPs were supporting terrorism by allowing terrorist supporters into Parliament. We were then given a police escort out of Parliament.
Jonathan never said anything of the sort. He only spoke during the Q&A when called upon by Gerald Kaufman MP and then only to remind Jeremy Corbyn MP that Israel had frozen settlement building to allow negotiations to resume but that the Palestinians never took Israel up on the offer.
It was Kaufman who raised the issue of terrorism. He said that every week The Jewish Chronicle sends him a complimentary issue and that this week he noticed the headline “Hamas gets a hearing in House of Commons”.
The JC article goes on to describe how Ismail Haniyeh was the guest speaker at PRC’s annual conference in 2009.
Jokingly, Kaufman asked if anyone in the room was from Hamas at which, to loud applause, a young woman raised an arm.
The meeting had started with Kaufman acknowledging the dreadful deprivations suffered by the Palestinian refugees in Lebanon. He said that the refugee camps had no electricity or clean water and that sewage ran down the middle of the streets.
But, he said, despite these conditions he was moved that the main thing on the minds of the refugees was the “right of return”. He spoke of a Palestinian woman with an asthmatic baby and no medication who only wanted to discuss the “right of return”.
Mohammed Al Hamid, Chair of PRC Board of Trustees, said that the “seven million Palestinian refugees shared their indignities with another 44 million refugees worldwide”. He said refugees wanting to return home was a basic urge and that “we should defend this cause”.
Dr Arafat Shoukri, Director of the Council for European Palestinian Relations, said the Palestinians have no political or civil rights in Lebanon and that they are banned from working in 70 professions there.
He said that the right of return would not lead to the destruction of Israel because the Palestinians having the right is different from them actually exercising it. He thinks the Palestinians should be granted the right and it is up to them whether to exercise it.
He also said Lebanon thinks it is protecting the right of return by keeping the Palestinians in such oppressive conditions.
Dr. Tariq Tahboob, of the Association of Palestinian Doctors in Europe, said that the Palestinians are a very proud people with a 93% literacy rate. He said “Moses, the great prophet of Muslims, Christians and Jews said to Pharaoh ‘let my people go'”. Tahboob then repeated “let my people go”.
Tahboob also said Israel was created on Palestine in 1948 and he called for a two state solution with east Jerusalem as Palestine’s capital and for the right of return to be kept in place.
Andrew Love MP also acknowledged the lack of employment opportunities for Palestinians in Lebanon and how Lebanon imports labour from Syria and Egypt.
Love said that when the Palestinian refugees arrived in Lebanon only the Christian Palestinians were granted Lebanese citizenship by the Phalange government. Now, he said, if a Lebanese woman has a baby with a Palestinian man she will hide his name so the baby will become Lebanese.
Quite unbelievably, despite the obvious suffering of the Palestinians in Lebanon Gerald Kaufman MP and Jeremy Corbyn MP went on to call for a boycott of Israel.
Corbyn asked “Why are we trading normally with Israel?” He said that the Palestinians in exile were desperate to return home and that the conditions of the Palestinians in Gaza was morally wrong and a danger to the rest of the world.
Andy Slaughter MP, Labour’s shadow justice minister, said that the issue of the right of return had been sidelined as there have been so many injustices and abuses and that the injustices since 1948 are not in the past but in the present.
During the Q&A I was allowed to ask the panelists whether they felt ashamed that, by contributing to this false hope of “returning” to Israel, they have helped to sentence the Palestinians to lives of hell in Lebanon. I didn’t get a constructive response.
And after that Jonathan and I had our appointment with the police.
(Here is an interesting update to the talk from Harry’s Place.)
This map, without Israel, took pride of place behind all the speakers.
Last night the Palestine Solidarity Campaign revealed the horrors of what life would be like for British Jews under Labour. The Jew killing Hamas machine would become regulars to Downing Street.
But, first, a love letter.
At the PSC event about Gaza, held at Conway Hall (which is owned by the South Place Ethical Society), actorvist Leigh Outram read the following from Love Letters to Gaza (see clip 1 below). The boat mentioned is the Audacity of Hope:
Maybe Ms Outram hasn’t visited Auschwitz and seen the gas chambers and the ovens or the pictures of naked Jewish women huddling together in front of a pit before being shot. Maybe she doesn’t know that one million Jewish children died in The Holocaust.
This is the true Holocaust industry, a term coined by Norman Finklestein, where the likes of Ms Outram get paid for minimalising the horrors of Auschwitz by comparing it to Gaza. But Outram set the theme for the evening.
The Love Letter read out by Tracy-Ann Woods (clip 2) described the Palestinians as “hated simply for being who they are” and that read out by Clare Quinn (clip 3) described Israel as “dying”. Ahmed Masoud, who has written for the BBC, compared Gaza to the Warsaw Ghetto. Another activist (clip 4) said “no oppression or injustice has ever gone without falling. The apartheid regime ended, the collapse of Nazism…”
Meanwhile, Labour MPs Jeremy Corbyn and Andy Slaughter, the Shadow Justice Minister, sat on stage applauding and when it came to speak everyone stood in front of map of Palestine, where there was no Israel.
Of Hamas Slaughter said (clip 5):
“They recognise a Palestinian state on ’67 borders, which is to effectively recognise the state of Israel. Now I think if that is not enough for the Americans or Israelis then I think we are playing games because those concessions are considerable concessions and they are the right concessions to make.”
This from a potential Justice Minister. Except recognition of a Palestinian state is not recognition of Israel. A small swing from the Conservatives to Labour in 2015 and the Liberal Democrats could ditch the Tories. A Lib/Lab coalition would be the perfect storm for Israel and British Jews with Hamas becoming regular visitors to Number 10.
Slaughter has already met Hamas and the Labour Party offered no comment.
Corbyn (clip 6) finished off the evening calling for some potentially five million Palestinians to be allowed into Israel, effectively turning it into yet another Arab state while taking the benefits of the Israelis’ hard work builing up a successful country.
Michael Deas (clip 7), Palestinian BDS National Committee, attempted to paint Israel as being undemocratic, but he was soon followed by Kika Markham (clip 8), the widow of Corin Redgrave, who read an extract from a role she performed as Haaretz journalist Amira Hass in which Hass talks of Israel in the most despicable terms.
A country that allows Hass and Haaretz to attack it so regularly cannot be anything but democratic. There isn’t something even near the equivalent of Haaretz for the Palestinians and that speaks volumes.
This was on the wall at the PSC’s Conway Hall event.
Toy models displayed in lobby at Conway Hall.
Jon McKenna, Tracy-Ann Wood, Leigh Outram, Laura Freeman watching Clare Quinn spew poison about the Jewish state.
Clip 1 – Leigh Outram (compares Auschwitz to Gaza)
Clip 2 – Tracy-Ann Woods (“Palestinians hated for who they are”)
Clip 3 – Clare Quinn (“Israel is dying”)
Clip 4 – Activist (likens Israel to the Nazis)
Clip 5 – Andy Slaughter MP (“Hamas recognises Israel”)
Clip 6 – Jeremy Corbyn MP (“Palestinian refugees” will go to Israel)
Clip 7 – Michael Deas (“Israel is not democratic”)
Clip 8 – Kika Markham (acts as Haaretz’s Amira Hass)
Labour MPs Jeremy Corbyn, Richard Burden and Yasmin Qureshi owe Theresa May, the Home Secretary, a huge debt of gratitude for having had Sheikh Raed Salah detained on Tuesday night. She might just have saved their careers.
Had the homophobic preacher been allowed to speak at wednesday night’s event at the Houses of Parliament there would now be photographs circulating of them sharing a platform with him.
These photos would, no doubt, have featured in the political literature for the next general election and would probably have led to these MPs’ crushing defeats, as sharing platforms with self-confessed homophobes is not something the British public would wish to be associated with.
Instead Salah is awaiting deportation back to Israel.
Meanwhile, in his defence Middle East Monitor and Palestine Solidarity Campaign have been raising the straw man that Salah is not an anti-Semite on the basis of lack of proof.
While he is accused of claiming that Jews use the blood of children to make their bread, his blatant homophobia has not been made a huge issue of. His supporters are defending him only against claims of anti-Semitism.
What is your opinion of the legislation now being discussed in the Knesset, which would grant Muslim women rights similar to those of Jewish women in matters of personal status?
“That bill is tantamount to a war on Islam. It is an attempt to dictate different, foreign values that are neither Muslim nor Palestinian values.”
What is your opinion of homosexuality?
“It is a crime. A great crime. Such phenomena signal the start of the collapse of every society. Those who believe in Allah know that behavior of that kind brings his wrath and is liable to cause the worst things to happen. There is no solution for this, unless the individual’s faith is strengthened.”
In this statement Salah denies most of the accusations:
“It has been claimed that he repeated a ‘blood libel’ by saying, ‘among those whose blood was mixed with the sacred (Jewish) bread’; this is an absolute lie and a malicious fabrication.”
“With regard to the statement that ‘the Creator made from you [the Jews] monkeys and losers’, this is again a lie and fabrication.”
“I unequivocally condemn all forms of racism, including anti- Semitism, Islamophobia, and racism towards my own people, the Palestinians.”
There are no denials about his homophobia and thoughts on the inequality of women.
So what does Sarah Colborne think of sharing a platform with someone who thinks homosexuality “is a crime…that is liable to cause the worst things to happen”. Obviously nothing.
Colborne uses her own homosexuality as a political weapon. She recently wrote to Marc Almond complaining about “real homophobia confronted by the LGBT community inside Israel” and urged him to cancel his tour to Israel. He did cancel, although Almond said it “was not for any political reason”:
“Dear Marc Almond,
I was shocked to hear that you were scheduled to perform in Israel. Listening to your music, I always assumed that you had a clear and unstinting compassion for those who face discrimination and oppression. Your music provided the soundtrack to many lesbians and gay men growing up in a hostile society. And as a lesbian who has been actively supporting Palestinian rights for over a decade, I felt obliged to write to you personally.
Israel is attempting to ‘pinkwash’ itself as tolerant, and gay-friendly in an attempt to paint over the discrimination, racism and apartheid that Palestinians face on a daily basis. It is an attempt to cover up Israel’s flouting of international law and its violations of the Fourth Geneva Convention.
Those who support Israel’s crimes continue to propogate the colonialist fantasies of a civilised and gay-friendly Israel, as opposed to hostile, homophobic Palestinians. This not only denies the real homophobia confronted by the LGBT community inside Israel, but also the reality of life as a lesbian or gay Palestinian living under a brutal military occupation. By propogating this fantasy, Israel is attempting to co-opt support from LGBT artists and activists in other countries for its violence towards Palestinians.
I have worked with the Palestinian community in Britain and internationally, travelled to Palestinian towns and villages, and I was on the Mavi Marmara last year when it was attacked by Israeli commandos whilst in international waters, taking aid to Gaza. Our shared experiences of homophobia and discrimination should make us even more sensitive to, and supportive of, the cause of equality, freedom and justice for Palestine.
I urge you to listen to the voices of Palestinian gay and lesbian organisations, for example Palestinian Queers for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (PQBDS). Please listen to those of us in the LGBT community in Britain, who believe that until Palestinians are free, none of us are free.
The cause of Palestine is the cause of justice and freedom. Please do not taint the love of the LGBT community for your music by playing in Israel.
Yet, here she is sitting next to him on Monday night at an event sponsored by the Palestine Solidarity Campaign, which she heads, and Middle East Monitor.
Conway Hall: Salah and Sarah Colborne in the middle
It just goes to show that Salah’s vile views can be overlooked where the joint goal is the vilification of Israel.
Will Qureshi, Corbyn and Burden now denounce Salah as a homophobe or do they consider homophobia to be less serious than anti-Semitism?
At the next general election the British public will be made well aware that these three Labour MPs were due to share a platform with someone who has clearly expressed homophobic views.
And what about the PSC, which sponsored the event on Monday night where Salah spoke and sponsored the event at Parliament on Wednesday where he was due to speak?
Will the PSC’s patrons stay silent about an organisation they support, but which has now sponsored a homophobic preacher?
Those patrons include Tony Benn, actress Julie Christie, Victoria Brittain, playwright Caryl Churchill (who wrote Seven Jewish Children), RMT leader Bob Crow, writer William Dalrymple, the reverend Garth Hewitt, Ghada Karmi, Bruce Kent, Lowkey, Karma Nabulsi, Ilan Pappe, Alexei Sayle and Benjamin Zephania.
On the Reverend Stephen Sizer’s blog there is also a defence of Salah. Salah is referred to as a “well-respected Palestinian leader”.
Do Salah’s views on homosexuality make him a well-respected leader?
On The Apprentice the project manager on the losing team is invariably fired for the team’s losing performance. In the case of PSC chief Sarah Colborne Alan Sugar would already be pointing his finger and saying: