At the PSC’s “Global March to Jerusalem” outside the Israeli Embassy yesterday from 5pm to 7pm a three-year-old girl listened to two hours of hate-filled chanting and sermons before being called to the platform by her mother.
The microphone was thrust under her nose so she could do her own version of “Free Free Palestine”. Who needs preachers of hate when children are so indoctrinated with hate from birth in some British homes (see clip):
The little girl had heard repeated calls for Israel’s destruction and some things said about Jews in Arabic, which I didn’t understand.
She heard Ghada Karmi, who teaches Arab and Islamic Studies at Exeter University, declare “Israel is finished”, “it does not to deserve to continue as a state”, “Jerusalem does not belong to Jews”, “we respect all religions but we do not allow one group to take over this wonderful city” and “we muct act against Israel’s interests” (see clip):
It was Karmi, of course, who recently sat silently by as Ken O’Keefe compared Jews to Nazis. Karmi doesn’t seem to trust Jews to look after Jerusalem, but when the Jordanians controlled Jerusalem from 1949 to 1967 Jews were forbidden to visit it and its Jewish cemeteries were desecrated. Now people of all faiths can freely worship there, as long as your intentions are benign.
The “Global March to Jerusalem” turned out to be nothing more than a couple of hundred indoctrinated Israel haters taunting an empty Israeli Embassy building.
On its newsfeed Iran’s Press TV mocked the paltry turnout of pro-Israel activists and PSC head-honcho Sarah Colborne announced, to cheers, that those activists had left early.
Note to Press TV and Sarah Colborne: Friday night is Shabbat, the holiest and most precious time for Jews. They are with their families. That is why only 20 came and why those that came left early.
Here are Colborne et al aiming their chants towards an empty Israeli embassy building as Shabbat is about to come in. Even Colborne looks embarrassed:
As I walked back to the tube I chatted to some of the protesters.
I asked two teenage girls what they were doing to stand up for their oppressed sisters in Saudi Arabia who are not allowed to show their faces like these girls were doing. They answered that the Saudis treated women with more respect than women over here get. I asked a teenage boy whether he supported suicide bombings inside Israel. He said it was a response to having your land stolen.
With such sentiments you can start to understand where Toulouse Jew murderer Mohamed Merah came from.
More photos from yesterday:
The 2 middle maps are correct but the other 2 are laughable.
Jody McIntyre in One World's anti-Israel Freedom For Palestine video promoted by Lush.
In January I blogged about Jody McIntyre’s speech at a Palestine Solidarity Campaign event where he said:
“I say this at a time when people across the Arab world are setting alight to themselves in protest against their governments. We must take inspiration from them this year when we set the streets of London alight.”
As you will see in the video clip below these sentiments were applauded by Palestine Solidarity Campaign chief Sarah Colborne, PSC chairman Hugh Lanning and the rapper Lowkey.
Since then McIntyre has been feted by the left-wing media.
He was profiled in The Observer newspaper, invited to blog at The Independent newspaper and has appeared on countless news programmes. In yesterday’s Huffington Post, when asked by Dina Rickman “Do you think Footlocker is the right target?” he replied:
“On a personal level I think Brixton police station would be a better target than footlocker….I find it very difficult to condemn the looting myself. I feel sympathy when small cornershops and people’s homes are damaged but I don’t feel any sympathy for JD sports or M&S”
His high media profile has gained him a following of over 10,000 people on Twitter. Not bad for someone who cut his teeth on political activism outside Ahava in Covent Garden where he advocated for a boycott of Israel.
However, yesterday he was finally sacked by The Independent for tweeting the following:
“Be inspired by the scenes in #tottenham, and rise up in your own neighbourhood. 100 people in every area = the way we can beat the feds.”
“Following his recent tweets and statements on the London riots, The Independent will no longer be taking blogs from Jody McIntyre”.
With London still smoking and livelihoods ruined after a night of rioting and scenes of people jumping from burning buildings you would think he would lay low for a bit but, unrepentant, he tweeted in the early hours of today:
“I would suggest young people hit the streets tomorrow with three central demands.”
One of those demands is for the Prime Minister and Deputy Prime Minister to resign “with immediate effect”.
Not only was McIntyre applauded by the Palestine Solidarity Campaign, but he and Lowkey appear in One World’s Freedom for Palestine video, which is being promoted by Lush in the “Ethical Campaigns” section of their website.
Straight after McIntyre’s call for London to be lit up at the PSC event he goes onto say that “Palestine has been occupied since 1948”, which just goes to show the thinking behind the Freedom for Palestine song. It is not about ending “the occupation”, but ending Israel’s existence.
So, “ethical” Lush has shops in Saudi Arabia, where women are not allowed to work or drive, and it is promoting a video in which both McIntyre and Lowkey appear.
Quite incredibly McIntyre has just tweeted the following after taking some criticism:
“I have never supported looting local businesses + starting fires. Not in London, and not anywhere. Nice to have a scapegoat though?”
I also have three demands:
1. The Palestine Solidarity Campaign that applauded McIntyre’s sentiments and which recently hosted Sheikh Raed Salah, who has said that homosexuality is a crime, be shut down with immediate effect.
2. Lush stops promoting the vile Freedom for Palestine song and video.
3. We hear no more from McIntyre until he apologises for his comment calling for London to burn and for not condemning the looting.
Here’s McIntyre at the Palestine Solidarity Campaign event in January calling for the streets of London to be set alight. Sarah Colborne is sat next to him, Hugh Lanning is next and, finally, Lowkey. Watch for them applauding.
Sheikh Raed Salah at a recent Palestine Solidarity Campaign event.
Lowkey in One World's Freedom for Palestine video promoted by Lush.
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:
Sheikh Raed Salah was gone but not forgotten last night at the Palestine Solidarity Campaign event in the House of Commons at which he was due to speak alongside four Labour politicans and one Liberal Democrat.
Many speakers stood up to denounce his detention and potential deportation.
Salah had been arrested the night before after slipping into Britain last Saturday before the Home Office had properly informed the Border Agency that he had been excluded as not being conducive to the public good.
But before last night he had already spoken at Conway Hall on Monday night, in Leicester and in the House of Lords.
Yesterday, the Daily Mail’s front page headline screamed “Secure Britain…What a Joke” and attributed the following, alleged, statements to Salah:
On homosexuality: “It is a crime. A great crime. Such phenomena signal the start of the collapse of every society.”
On Jews: “We have never allowed ourselves to knead (the dough for) the bread that breaks the fast in the holy month of Ramadan with children’s blood. Whoever wants a more thorough explanation, let him ask what used to happen to some children in Europe, whose blood was mixed in with the dough of the (Jewish) holy bread.” (After this, alleged, speech 1,000 people rioted).
Salah had served two years in prison for confessing to having financed the terrorist group Hamas.
As last night’s PSC event took place Salah was languishing in prison.
Labour MP Jeremy Corbyn said that Salah’s lawyers, the PSC and Corbyn, himself, were going to challenge the decision. Corbyn also insinuated that the “orchestrated campaign by the Daily Mail” might be behind the decision not to allow Salah into the country.
The meeting itself was on Building Peace and Justice in Jerusalem. Speakers included Muslims, Christians and Jews. The intention was to portray Jerusalem as equally important to all the faiths and, therefore, having to be fairly shared with the Palestinians having east Jerusalem as their capital and the Jews having west Jerusalem as Israel’s.
At no stage was it stated that this would leave virtually every Jewish holy site under the control of the Palestinians.
While Palestinians would be able to worship on the Temple Mount, it is highly unlikely that many Israeli Jews would be allowed to pray at the Western Wall. This was certainly the case when Jordan controlled the Western Wall between 1949 and 1967. And they have the cheek to describe Israel as an “apartheid state”!
Labour MP Yasmin Qureshi spoke first. She referred to the “apartheid wall that digs deep into the West Bank”. She said Israel has “created a Jewish buffer zone around Jerusalem” and that it had appropriated huge swathes of land in order to Judaise Jerusalem.
Then Palestinian Ambassador Dr. Manuel Hassassian said that the Palestinians will “never compromise over the sovereignty of east Jerusalem. Jerusalem is the heart of the Palestinian state and the hardest nut to crack. If there is political will on the part of Israel, then everything has a solution. But we have a right wing fascist Israeli government that only wants to build settlements and confiscate land. We Palestinians don’t have a partner for peace. We made our historic compromise when we gave up 78% of Palestine in 1988.”
Considering Hassassian’s Fatah party has just joined forces with anti-Jewish terrorist group Hamas Hassassian’s hypocrisy reeks stronger than his aftershave.
Hassassian also referred to the “apartheid wall” and to Israel’s policies in Jerusalem as “ethnic cleansing”. He said that America keeps Israel immune from international law. On Salah’s arrest he said that Salah is in prison now for fighting for Palestinian rights in Jerusalem.
He finished off by saying:
“We are resilient, diligent and we will get our state in September with east Jerusalem as our capital. The UK government must be proactive and give us money and aid and say to Israel that you are the occupier and must end this occupation. We hope Palestinians and Israelis, Jews, Christians and Muslims will live in unity in Mosaic Jerusalem, where I was born. I will never quit defending the rights of Palestinians in that city.”
Ismail Patel, from Friends of Al Aqsa, said it was a “sad day today that his (Salah’s) voice should be silenced in a country known for its freedom of speech. He has more free speech in Israel than in Britain”.
He claimed that the Romans expelled the Jews but it was the Muslims who ended the Jewish dispersion in 637AD and that until 1967 Jerusalem was an open city, apart from 100 years of Crusader rule.
He said “Israel’s slogan was a land without a people for a people without a land”. But now, he said, Israel has a new slogan: “There is no meaning to Israel without Jerusalem as its capital and there is no meaning to Jerusalem without the Temple Mount on which Al Aqsa stands”.
“Israel’s Zionist ideology of occupation, oppression and expulsion wishes to create an exclusively Jewish state. It wants to be a Jewish democracy only, by denying other faiths equal rights. Never again should mankind oppress another because of the difference in their faith as was done in Germany during the Holocaust. The Palestinians have been expelled just because they are Palestinians. If we want ‘Never Again’ to come true we must motivate ourselves to keep the Palestinian presence in former Palestinian land, in a state where all faiths are equal and not a state where only Jews have the right to exist.”
Hind Khoury, of Sabeel, which is described as “an ecumenical grassroots liberation theology movement among Palestinian Christians”, said she wanted east Jerusalem to be the capital of a Palestinian state and west Jerusalem to be the capital of Israel.
She said that Israel is seeking to Judaise and de-Palestinise the city. She agreed with Ambassador Hassassian that the Palestinians had recognised Israel’s existence in 1988. She said that nothing justifies Israel’s exlusive claim to the West Bank and she was worried that “our churches will become Museums”.
Labour MP Richard Burden said that Palestinians must pay $26,000 for a building permit in Jerusalem and that the permits take many years to obtain from the Israelis. He said it was a case of the “creeping ethnic cleansing of a city by bureaucratic decree”.
Burden, referring to the Salah affair, said he had no truck with racism or anti-Semitism, but a person should be convicted on the basis of evidence, not innuendo:
“If the Home Secretary can produce evidence then fair enough, but the obligation is on her. If our government is as activist as this maybe it could show more activism and tell the Israeli authorities that it is about time they stopped demolishing Palestinian homes…Brave Jewish Israelis are also saying this.”
Last night BBC’s Newsnight had a piece about the Salah affair and as the credits were about to roll the presenter said that Burden had just phoned in to say that although he had been due to speak alongside Salah last night he had no input into arranging Salah’s visit. And his point is?
Labour Lord Alf Dubs had recently returned from his first ever visit to the West Bank and was “shocked” by what he saw: “Israel’s government is its own worst enemy.”
He called for a peaceful two state solution with Jerusalem as a shared capital, but this, he said, would be impossible with Israel’s “deliberate” settlement policy. He also described his visit to an Israeli military court:
“The security was so tight we had to leave our business cards on entering. In the dock were two Palestinian kids aged 14 and 15. Their handcuffs had been removed, but their legs were still shackled. The fifteen year old was in tears, which was very disturbing to see.”
Diana Neslen, of Jews for Justice for Palestinians, said she is a “dissident Jew”. She spoke of the “obscene wall that snakes around” Jerusalem. She said that until 1967 another wall divided the city, but although Jews could not visit the Western Wall then, they were “otherwise free and without restriction”.
She said that Israel had destroyed the houses that faced the Western Wall when it captured the Old City in 1967, but “gaining territory was no substitute for losing one’s soul”.
She also said that now many Palestinian cannot pray on the Temple Mount and that “this shows how unfit Israel is to be the guardian of the Holy sites…Israelis do not see the non-Jewish inhabitants of Palestine worthy of human decency”.
She described how on June 1st “white shirted young people” marched through east Jerusalem’s Sheikh Jarrah district screaming “Death to Arabs”, “Burn the Arabs” and “Burn the Arab villages”:
“It was like Mosley marching through the East End protected by the police, but Mosley was prevented from marching. Those who like to excavate anti-Semitism never condemn these outrageous scenes. Shameful silence breeds violence”.
She said some “brave Israeli and Jewish dissidents” did make a stand. One was Lucas Kerner who, she said, was wearing both a “Jewish skullcap and a Palestinian keffiya”, but he was attacked by police.
Liberal Democrat Baroness Jenny Tonge brought down the curtain. Her whole talk was about the Salah affair. She berated “the power of the Israel lobby here as well as in the USA”. She said she is “deeply ashamed of the Liberal Democrat part of our government”. She said that if you met Salah you would know that what has been said about him is not true.
She said that the proposed change in the law on universal jurisdiction was a case of “the Israel lobby at work. They lobbied on that and are getting their way and I suspect they lobbied on this. I am deeply ashamed and I am considering my future in my party.” (see poll below)
Jenny, you’ll be doing everyone a favour if you resign, mostly the Liberal Democrat party.
Meanwhile, Reverend Stephen Sizer was there last night as the official photographer. He is back from his recent trip to Malaysia where he said on TV:
“The far right in Britain is forming an alliance with Zionists because their common enemy are the Muslims.”
And so ended another evening where the Palestine Solidarity Campaign sunk to new lows. For my part even if Salah did not say what he is accused of saying about Jews and homosexuals the fact that he has been convicted of financing Hamas is enough to exclude him from Britain. (UPDATE: Sheikh Salah is a homophobe. Read Haaretz interview with him)
Would we let in to Britain someone who has financed Al Qaeda?
Meanwhile, in the queue for last night’s event someone was telling me that the Zionists controlled the world financial system and that Israel controlled British foreign policy and was responsible for 9/11. But, he assured me, he was not anti-Semitic.
Photos/audio from last night:
Sarah Colborne (PSC Chief), Martin Linton, Ben White, Diana Neslen last night.
Jeremy Corbyn MP congratulates "dissident Jew" Diana Neslen.
Palestinian Ambassador Dr Manuel Hassassian, Jeremy Corbyn MP, Richard Burden MP, Lord Alf Dubs
Richard Burden MP, Lord Alf Dubs, Hind Khoury (Sabeel)
Lubna Masarwa (Middle East Monitor), Jeremy Corbyn MP, Ben White (anti-Zionist activist)
Last night at Conway Hall: Hassan Sanallah (translator), Sheikh Raed Salah, Sarah Colborne (PSC), Daud Abdullah (MEMO)
Sheikh Raed Salah made it to Conway Hall in London last night to give a talk on The Arab Spring and its effect on the conflict in Palestine. The event was sponsored by the Palestine Solidarity Campaign, the Islamic Forum of Europe and Middle East Monitor.
Salah is the leader of the Northern Branch of the Islamic Movement in Israel and is accused of having used the blood libel, which he denies. He served three and a half years in prison after having confessed to financing Hamas.
Not only was Salah there last night, he will also be speaking this Wednesday at the Grand Committe room of the Houses of Parliament alongside MPs Richard Burden, Jeremy Corbyn, Yasmin Qureshi as well as Lord Alf Dubs and the Palestinian Ambassador, Dr Manuel Hassassian. Ben White (anti-Zionist polemicist), Hind Khoury (Sabeel), Diana Neslen (Jews for Justice for Palestinians) and Ismail Patel (Friends of Al Aqsa) are also due to be speaking on Wednesday. The subject under discussion will be Building Peace and Justice in Jerusalem.
But last night Salah played to a pretty sparse audience. There were about 100 people making Conway Hall, which is owned by the South Place Ethical Society, an educational charity, about a third full.
He welcomed the Arab Spring, and particularly the Egyptian Revolution, in playing a supportive role in the Palestinian cause as well as the Nakba Day and Naksa Day clashes on the Israeli border in May and June respectively. He also called for a Million Man March towards the Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem on 21st August.
He said that this march will confirm that the Mosque is Palestinian despite Israel’s declared intention of demolishing it in order to build the “so called Third Temple”. He said that Israel must realise that there is a limit on its designs on the Mosque or it will be the equivalent to a declaration of war on the Islamic World.
He went on to berate Barak Obama for defining Israel as a “Jewish State” and said that “a significant number of free voices from London told us that they know the truth on the issue of Palestine, but that they are suffering under the pressure of the Israel lobby here”.
He said that the “Arab Uprisings showed him that the Palestinians have support within the wider Arab family and we don’t feel alone”.
He then went on to describe what happened on the Mavi Marmara, which he was on last May, along with Sarah Colborne of the PSC, when it was intercepted by Israel:
“The ship was attacked while we were at Morning Prayer. While I was praying bullets were fired from the sea and air, killing nine peoeple and wounding many others. The attackers had a list of names of people who should be assassinated by the Israeli forces. My name was on the list along with people from the IHH and Israeli Arab MK Hanin Zoabi. One of the Israeli soldiers killed an individual who looked just like me. We were then imprisoned and we faced charges that were enough to send us to prison for decades. We were only released when Erdogan intervened. Despite all the attacks we were asked to come back again and we will continue to participate in the flotillas until Palestinian independence is realised.”
Next stop is the Houses of Parliament this Wednesday, that is unless British detectives can catch up with him in time. Watch this space.
ex-MP and head of Labour Friends of Palestine, Martin Linton.
It’s Saturday and that means anti-Israel protest outside Ahava. The protest started an hour earlier than usual because some protesters had to shoot off to an anti-fascism and anti-Islamophobia rally.
So many protests, so little time.
After a year the Ahava protests are finally starting to attract some celebrity anti-Israel activists.
Two weeks ago Sarah Colborne, Director of Campaigns and Operations at the Palestine Solidarity Campaign, made her first appearance.
She was present again this week but there was even greater royalty in the form of Martin Linton, Chair of Labour Friends of Palestine, who lost his Battersea Parliamentary seat in May.
In March Mr. Linton told a meeting in Parliament that Israel was using its long tentacles to fund British election campaigns and to buy Conservative support. His speech made front page headlines.
I did suggest to him today that if he switched sides then this all powerful pro-Israel machine might win him a place back in Parliament. Sadly, he declined the offer.
Meanwhile, ever present Bruce, chief secretary of AAAUK (Americans Against Apartheid UK) took the opportunity to tell passers-by that disagreed with him that they were fascists (clip 1 below).
Others were content to hold up pictures of dead Palestinian children while describing pro-Israel activists as “bloodsucking” (clip 2 below).
In two weeks time it is Ahava BUYcott weekend where you can obtain a 10% discount on Ahava products and then wave your purchases at the anti-Israel protesters as you exit the store (39 Monmouth Street, Covent Garden). Always fun.
anti-Israel activist displaying picture of dead children
Sarah Colborne, Director of Campaigns and Operations at the Palestine Campaign, made a surprise visit to inspect her troops on the front-line on Saturday.
The Palestine Campaign sponsors the fortnightly anti-Israel demonstrations outside Ahava paying for the thousands of leaflets that are distributed to passers-by. There are obviously times when the planet need not be spared.
Anti-Israel activists were well down from the usual number. Bruce Levy, head-honcho of the troops on the ground, said everyone was at the Anarchist Bookfair.
Some did saunter along later to boost the ranks of the faithful.
The English Defence League were allocated their own pen by the police. As soon as the EDL arrived anti-Israel activists tried to capture that all important photo of a counter-demonstrator standing near the EDL so they can smear the counter-demonstrator as a racist.
This time there were just four EDL members present. As well as showing support for Israel they spent most of their time protesting against Hamas’ hatred of gays.
The day turned into the battle of the flags with the Flag of St. George and the gay rights flag hoisted in the EDL pen and Palestinian flags flying in the anti-Israel pen.
And on top of all the other celebrity boycotters even Elvis Presley came back to make an appearance in the anti-Israel pen.
As the Palestine Campaign is the chief sponsor of all these anti-Israel protests a few pro-Israel counter-demonstrators took the opportunity to make their objections known to Sarah Colborne.
She was asked whether she denounced Hamas for their call to kill Jews in their Charter (Article 7). She replied: “I will not engage with you.”
Now, I have no major problem with someone being anti-Israel, if that is their wish, but surely it isn’t too difficult to denounce an organisation that expressly wishes to kill Jews. Call me old-fashioned.
These days one has to make an expressed and clear denunciation of the EDL to prove that one is not a racist but not denouncing a proudly virulently anti-Semitic organisation like Hamas is, apparently, just fine.
If Sarah or Betty Hunter or anyone from the Palestine Campaign wishes, at any stage, to denounce Hamas after reading Article Seven of its Charter then please get in touch and I will publish any response on this blog.
Article Seven states:
…….the Islamic Resistance Movement aspires to the realisation of Allah’s promise, no matter how long that should take. The Prophet, Allah bless him and grant him salvation, has said:
“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.” (related by al-Bukhari and Muslim).