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Monday, 23 October 2017

Labour Against the Witchhunt Forms in Response to Expulsion of Moshe Machover – Join Us

The Compliance Unit and Iain McNicol Are The Last Bastion of the Right

See the Labour Against the Witchhunt Facebook Page

The time has come to fight back.  The Left simply cannot allow the Right to continue with expelling those they don’t like.  The Momentum leadership under Lansman, which should have taken on the fight against the witch hunt has, instead, got into bed with the witch hunters.  It was Lansman and his friends who laid the basis for Jackie Walker’s suspension from the Labour Party by removing Jackie from her position as Vice Chair of Momentum.  If people really want to see a radical and socialist government under Jeremy Corbyn we have to stop the witch hunt in its tracks.  Indeed we need to be rooting out the Blairite bureaucracy.
Iain McNicol - received a hero's welcome at Labour Friends of Israel - mastermind of the anti-Corbyn witch hunt
Labour Against the Witch hunt was formed on Saturday and we have a few simple positions;
  • 1.      No auto exclusions  Everyone has the right to a hearing.  The Chakrabarti Report found that Labour’s disciplinary and complaints procedures “... lacked sufficient transparency, uniformity and expertise” and failed to observe “the vital legal principles of due process (or natural justice) and proportionality”.

  • 2.      It is unacceptable that there are differing definitions of anti-Semitism.  Anti-Semitism isn’t a difficult thing to define.  It is hostility or hatred of Jews.  You don’t need a 450 word definition unless your purpose is to conflate opposition to Zionism, the ideology that led to the foundation of the Israeli state and genuine anti-Semitism.
Corbyn has adopted the short, two sentence International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance definition
“Antisemitism is a certain perception of Jews, which may be expressed as hatred toward Jews. Rhetorical and physical manifestations of antisemitism are directed toward Jewish or non-Jewish individuals and/or their property, toward Jewish community institutions and religious facilities.”
The AWL's 'Stop the Purge' supports the purge of Ken Livingstone
This definition is itself too imprecise, open ended and uncertain.  What makes it unacceptable is that it introduces and lays the basis for 11 ‘examples’ of anti-Semitism, 7 of which relate to Israel.  In other words the whole purpose of the definition is to conflate anti-Zionism with anti-Semitism.  Whilst Corbyn has not adopted these 11 examples the Labour bureaucracy has.  We have therefore adopted the definition first espoused by Professor Brian Klug of Oxford University in his lecture ‘Echoes of Shattering Glass’ delivered in his 2014 lecture in Berlin’s Jewish Museum on the anniversary of Kristallnacht. 
‘antisemitism is a form of hostility to Jews as Jews, where Jews are perceived as something other than what they are.’
The article that triggered the  expulsion of Moshe Machover
 3.      Thirdly our demand is that the Compliance Unit is abolished.  It is completely undemocratic and unaccountable.  Instead all disciplinary action is to be taken by elected bodies in future.
It is important that LAW builds itself quickly in the coming months and engages in a series of activities, such as a picket of the NEC to demand the reinstatement of Moshe Machover to holding meetings and a conference.
A four person Executive Committee was elected – Jackie Walker, Stan Keable, Pete Firmin and Tony Greenstein.
Political Background
The Labour Party Conference just gone was a dismal and dispiriting time for Jeremy Newmark, Mike Katz and the Jewish Labour Movement/Labour Friends of Israel.
When Naomi Wimborne Iddrissi and Leah Levane got up to decry the false anti-Semitism smears of both organisations there was rapturous applause and even standing ovations.  When Jeremy Corbyn mentioned Palestine the audience got to their feet.  Nothing was guaranteed to elicit a cheer more than mention of Palestine.
I realise dear reader that you are unlike to be too sympathetic to Newmark and Katz but I ask you not to be too cold hearted either.  For two years they have campaigned incessantly to conflate anti-Semitism and anti-Zionism.  They have secured the suspension of Jackie Walker (twice) myself and even some non-Jews for ‘anti-Semitism’.  They have lobbied, pressurised, campaigned and of course briefed their friends in the Tory press.  It’s almost as if no one reads the Daily Mail in the Labour Party.
And then what?  None of it has made a blind bit of difference because the Labour Party conference swung to the Left.  What was the point of that £1m slush fund for Joan Ryan MP if nothing has changed?  Why Newmark even overcame his distaste for the Left and befriended and flattered Jon Lansman, the property millionaire owner of Momentum.  Ok he’s not that much to the left for you and me but to Newmark he is a raving communist. 
Newmark even fooled Lansman into thinking he was a socialist-Zionist of the Mapam stripe. (for those who don’t know Mapam, although Zionists, have tended to support certain basic civil liberties for Arabs in Israel – today they are part of Meretz and clinging onto a presence in the Knesset).  In fact Newmark goes along with the Occupation, house demolitions the lot.
To make matters even worse, first Free Speech on Israel held a meeting at Monday lunch time which was packed to the rafters and then Jewish Voices for Labour, despite being wet and woolly, held its inaugural rally on Monday evening, also packed to the rafters.  Even worse still two union bosses including Len McLuskey from Unite, attend pledging support.
LRC meeting in Brighton with Jackie Walker
And as if to make this really the Conference from hell, Jeremy Corbyn became the first Labour leader to snub the Labour Friends of Israel fringe meeting in 20 years.  Emily Thornberry, bless her heart, tried to comfort the assembled big wigs, Mark Regev and assorted Zionist nobodies with a tale of Corbyn being hard at work on his speech.  However he was caught on camera having a good time at the Daily Mirror piss up!  When Joan Ryan, Labour’s Tory MP for Enfield North read out a message from Corbyn there were cries of ‘where is he’why is he not here?’.  You see LFI expects Corbyn to attend to demonstrate they are still a force to be reckoned with.
It was reported that Iain McNicol, Labour’s crooked General Secretary, was given a hero’s reception and quite right too. When all is lost McNicol has always been steady as a rock.  He has been so reliable that it is hard to imagine he doesn’t have a formal relationship with the Israeli and US Embassies.  Paid or unpaid is anyone’s guess.
Rhea Wolfson on Labour's NEC, an AWL sympathiser supported Jackie Walker's referral to the National Constitutional Committee - spoke at the Stop the Purge meeting at LP Conference
Sure enough, when all else fails, then you have to fall back on that tried and trusted weapon, ‘Anti-Semitism’. So it was that Naomi was made the subject of a complaint because she had accused the JLM of running to the Telegraph and Mail.  How dare she say such a thing?  She mentioned Jews, well Zionists, in the same sentence as the press.  That is an ‘anti-Semitic trope’.  As Jamie Stern-Weiner points out the old anti-Semitic myth revolved around Jewish ownership and control of the media not briefing the press, but such a distinction really is being pedantic.  That means she is an anti-Semite and should be suspended if not expelled for her disgraceful speech.  Indeed everyone who stood and applauded her should be expelled for giving their approval although I accept that it might be difficult knowing who stood up and who didn’t (this can be solved by expelling all the conference delegates bar Progress supporters).
At the Free Speech on Israel meeting the Israeli speaker, Miko Peled argued in favour of free speech on Israel and all political issues.  He even mentioned ‘Holocaust yes or no’.  This was enough for the press to invent an allegation that Holocaust denial was the main topic of the meeting!  And because Tony Greenstein was present at the meeting Brighton and Hove Council’s Progress Leader Councillor Warren Morgan called for me to be expelled alongside saying that he wouldn’t invite Labour to hold a conference in Brighton again.  Kinda logical that.  Clearly both of us being Jewish we share equal responsibility for what each of us said in the meeting!  Eat your heart out Uncle Joe!
Tory Guido Fawkes is in full support of the JLM Witchhunt
And the coup de grace?  Well the JLM had been particularly annoyed by a paper that Labour Party Marxists had distributed at conference.  It contained an article by Professor Moshe Machover, an Israeli anti-Zionist and founder of Matzpen, a socialist organisation of Israelis and Arabs.  The article had the temerity to quote the Deputy Chief of the SS, Reinhard Heydrich in 1935 saying how much the Nazis favoured the Zionists as opposed to the ‘assimilationists’ in the German Jewish community.  Now it is irrelevant that this quote can be found in the book of Zionist Professor of Holocaust Studies, Francis Nicosia.  The fact that it is true is also irrelevant.  To repeat such things today is clearly anti-Semitic!  Moshe also mentioned the welcome that the Zionists gave to the Nuremburg Laws of 1935.  Again he refused to understand that things look so very different 80 years later.

So Iain McNicol and his monkey, Sam Matthews hit on the bright idea of expelling Moshe.  Because he is a professor he might cause trouble.  So they ‘auto excluded’ him, which saves the trouble of a hearing, evidence etc.  and after having to write him two expulsion letters, because the first was not clear enough they explained that it was his links with LPM and the Communist Party of Great Britain that was the real reason for the expulsion.

The Demolition of an Israeli Arab village is why Israel is an Apartheid State & why a racist state has no ‘right to exist’

Raba Abu al-Kiyan, the widow of Yakub, next to the rubble of their home in Umm al-Hiran. Alex Levac
If you want to know why Israel is a racist state, with racism embedded in its DNA, then read the following stories.  It is also why Israel is not a 'normal' Western bourgeois democratic state.  Only a settler colonial state demolishes whole villages belonging to a particular ethnicity in order to build on top of it a town belonging to the colonial elite, in this case Jews.  And of course, unlike the Arab village of Umm al-Hiran, the Jewish town of Hiran will have running water, electricity, be connected to the sewerage etc.  Such things are taken for granted in Jewish towns but not in 'unrecognised' Arab villages.

A Bedouin village, Umm al-Hiran in Israel’s Negev desert (not the Occupied West  Bank or Gaza) which, after over 60 years, was demolished in order to make way for the ‘Jewish’ town of Hiran.
The Negev is largely unoccupied.  Few Jews want to live there.  It would have been easy to  build a Jewish town next to Umm al Hiran but that would have defeated another racist master plan, the Prawer Plan.  It is an article of faith amongst Israel’s planners and demographers that the Negev must be Judified.  In other words Arabs must be confined to their own shanty towns at the disposal of Israeli industry.  The High Court when allowing the demolition was told that the new town of Hiran would include Arabs but now they have been told that only religious Jews will be allowed to join.  The High Court, having willingly been deceived, is not likely to overturn its original judgement.  Today Israel’s High Court, which has always been complicit in Zionist colonisation and ethnic cleansing, is being cleansed of any Judge who is seen as concerned about human rights.  The Court is both being stuffed with right-wing settler justices and it is under attack because it isn’t racist enough.

Tony Greenstein

Eight months ago, Yakub Abu al-Kiyan was killed by police during a protest against the demolition of Bedouin houses to make way for Jewish ones; his widow and 10 kids are living in a tent next to the rubble of their home

Gideon Levy and Alex Levac Sep 08, 2017 8:13 PM

Wearing black, she emerges from her tent, a beautiful, smiling woman whose face is etched with the lines of life’s ordeals. Raba Abu al-Kiyan, the widow of Yakub – the teacher who was shot to death on January 18 by the Israel Police, who in a snap decision concluded that he was trying to run them over – lives in a tent next to the ruins of her home in the Bedouin village of Umm al-Hiran in the Negev.

When we visited here a few days after the incident, Raba repeatedly circled the rubble, mutely. Her nephew Akram, a medical student in Moldova, told us at the time that she was reconstructing her last moments with Yakub. This week she stood at the entrance to the large tent that is her home and that of her 10 children and one grandchild, and, in the late-summer heat, bottle of water in hand, agreed to talk.

For eight months – through winter, spring, summer and now with the onset of autumn – the bereaved family has called this tent home. The heaps of rubble nearby have lain untouched since that fateful, early January morning, the morning of the killing and destruction in Umm al-Hiran. The ruins of the parents’ house, the children’s house, the animal pen – all are just as they were. People don’t clear away the rubble in Umm al-Hiran, because they understand that in any event they’re living on borrowed time here.

On July 18, the bulldozers returned and started to prepare the ground for the religious-Jewish community of Hiran, which is to be built on the ruins of the Bedouin village. The work is going on just steps away from the tent where Raba and her children live. They probably won’t be able to stay here much longer.

Her father called her Raba ("four," because she was the fourth child) and her mother called her Najah, which means “success.” Raba-Najah was born 46 years ago on this now rubble-strewn soil. Her husband Yakub’s second wife, Amal, had gone to visit her parents the day we visited. Amal is the widow of his deceased brother; Yakub married her after his brother died, according to tradition.

A pall of despair seems to have descended on Umm al-Hiran. No one is expanding his house, no one is renovating or fixing anything – neglect is rampant. The mounds of ruins have become street furniture, the meager plantings have wilted, there’s no reason to cultivate anything. The generators, the black water containers, the satellite dishes and the solar panels – all are now signs of transience here, scattered about on the ground, after dozens of years of habitation. Only the access road to the community, formerly scarred and pot-holed, was miraculously repaired and repaved recently. After all, it’s going to serve Jewish residents soon.

An uneasy silence hovered over Umm al-Hiran under a blazing noontime sun, penetrated occasionally by the bleating of a lamb or the crying of an infant. Everyone understands that the fate of the village is sealed: Bedouin out, Jews in. And not just any Jews – according to the charter of the new community that will be built here, its land will be sold exclusively to “observers of the Torah and the precepts according to the values of Orthodox Judaism.” The core settler group is already waiting, living in mobile homes, in the nearby Yattir Forest.

Two weeks ago, the district planning and building committee approved a plan for the evacuees of the Bedouin village to be moved to a provisional site for 15 years, in Hura in the southern Negev. In the entire expanse of this vast desert, only here in Umm al-Hiran was a place found for Jews to settle in, on the site of yet another demolished village.
Residents look at the remains of homes demolished in the Bedouin village of Umm al-Hiran in southern Israel, January 25, 2017.Alex Levac
Strewn about, across from Raba’s tent, the double mattress she shared with her husband lies amid solar panels; their personal effects remain trapped under concrete beams. Iron rods, kitchen cupboards, a basin. Of the small olive grove that Yakub tended, the wreckers left only one ornamental tree, which thrusts up from the ruins.

“They thought that was their tree, a tree that we didn’t plant, so they let it be,” Raba says, “but it’s a tree that Yakub planted.” The sheep Yakub raised as a hobby, which were the apple of his eye, also survived and now lie, reeling from the heat, in a small new pen that was built for them. Two mangy stray dogs have found shelter under the wreckage of a car.

Along the sloping dirt road on which Yakub drove slowly to his death, exactly at the place where he was shot by the police, a modest monument of stones in his memory has been erected, surrounded by used tires. Before leaving his house in his jeep, he told Raba and the children to stay clear. “It’s dangerous here,” Yakub said. His family never saw him again.

Last weekend, on Id al-Adha, the Feast of the Sacrifice, Raba prepared two holiday meals, one “a meal for Yakub,” the other for guests. She took the meal for her late husband to the mosque and donated it to the needy.

The couple’s eldest son, Hussam, 25, completed medical school in Odessa and is now preparing for the Israeli certification examinations. Unable to study in the hot, crowded tent, he travels to Be’er Sheva every day, to the library of Ben-Gurion University; his father had a master’s degree in computer engineering from BGU.

Daughter Maryam, 21, emerges from the tent and joins the conversation. Smiling and exuding charm, she’s a student at Kaye Academic College of Education in Be’er Sheva. At the time of her father’s death, she was doing a trial week as a kindergarten teacher. Three weeks later, she sat for exams. She says she was unhappy with the grades she attained, in the shadow of the trauma.
A memorial for Yakub Abu al-Kiyan in Umm al-Hiran. Alex Levac
When her mother stumbles while speaking Hebrew, Maryam helps her out. Her teacher-training studies haven’t yet resumed for the fall, so she’s helping out in the tent. There are no toilet facilities, and the only electric power they have is generated by a solar device.

Everyone in the village has been living in the shadow of fear since January, Maryam says, especially the children.

“I am in a constant state of worry,” she says. “Maybe they will come back again to demolish. Maybe we will leave home in the morning and won’t be able to come back in the afternoon because everything will be blocked and they will level the rest of the houses. If they destroy my home, they will destroy all the memories that it contains for me.”

In the meantime, other than a widow’s allowance from social security, Raba hasn’t received anything from the state, whose leaders lost no time calling her husband – a revered teacher – a “wicked terrorist,” in the words of Police Commissioner Roni Alsheich. Later they half-retracted what they had said, without apologizing. Nor is the Justice Ministry department that investigates the police in any hurry to help out. Following reports that the department's investigators had found a “grave operational failure” in the conduct of the police on January 18, and that “there was probably no terrorist event” – an oppressive, prolonged silence has prevailed, as though the case has been closed.

At the other end of the village, Yakub’s nephew, Raad Abu al-Kiyan, continues to wage a struggle for the community’s survival. Forty years old, polished and articulate, he’s the chairman of the village committee and he sets forth his views again, tirelessly. His wife, Maryam, who has a master’s in public policy management from BGU, is the chairwoman of a local women’s group.

Raad works in the realm of environmental quality, but won’t say where.

“They killed Yaakov and Musa,” he says, referring to his uncle and to his grandfather, Musa, Yakub’s father, who died 21 days after his son was killed, possibly from heartbreak.

“We’ve lived here for 62 years without getting a thing from state, which settled us here. And now the state rewards us with murder – a state that employs all its force against its citizens,” Raad says. “We asked for a partner who would come and talk with us. Who would bring a real offer. But they don’t want an agreed-upon solution. They want to do things by force. Why is there only an enforcement unit that operates against the Bedouin, the [Israel Police’s] Yoav Unit? Is there a unit against people from the Caucasus? Against the Russians? The Ethiopians? Why is there an enforcement unit only against us?

We suggested that we live together, one next to the other,” he continues. “But the Hiran charter states that the community will be only for Orthodox Jews. Why did Yakub and Musa have to be killed in order to bring Yaakov and Moshe instead? It’s no small thing, what happened on January 18. The world knows what happened here. Now they want to do things by force again, but without anyone noticing. To remove Umm al-Hiran from the ‘front,’ to soften things, so it’s not felt – and then to expel us. We don’t know what to expect, but we haven’t lost hope. A hope that’s 2,000 years old.

Adds Raba: “Aren’t we citizens? I tell my friends from Hebron: You live better than us. You have land. We don’t even have that.”

Her daughter, Maryam, points to the concrete ceiling that lies crushed on the ground. “This is where we did our homework, and here’s where we played, so we wouldn’t bother Dad, who liked quiet.”

Every month Raba visits Yakub’s grave, at nearby Tel Shoket. She was there early this week, too, with two of her children. What do you tell her husband in his grave? “That God will help.”

Saturday, 21 October 2017

Israel Moves Another Step Nearer Being a Police State – Even for Jews

Plan to Outlaw ‘Breaking the Silence’ the group which reveals Israel's war crimes

The reality of the most benign occupation in the world
Settler colonial societies, be it Israel, Algeria or South Africa, always created a certain democratic space for the settler population.  The indigenous population were always faced with a racist police state but Whites South Africans, French colons or Israeli Jews were always granted freedoms that resemble those that exist in Western bourgeois societies.

However the very nature of a settler colonial society leads to a situation where those members of the settler community who sympathise with and support the oppressed native population find that their democratic space is constantly being encroached upon.  So it was in South Africa that White opponents of Apartheid were also banned, detained, framed and deported.  So too in Israel, anti-Zionist Jews are increasingly coming under pressure, political and physical.  Not just anti-Zionist Jews but even those Zionists who are human rights activists and oppose the war crimes of the settler state.
How the Right see it - revealing human rights violations is a distortion of reality
I have had an argument with a good Israeli comrade, Ronnie Barkan, who tells me that ‘Breaking the Silence’ is no better than the rest of the Zionist population.  I disagree with him.  Although they, like Btselem, are undoubtedly liberal Zionists the fact is that the work they do is seen, rightly, as a threat by the Zionist regime – and not just the regime but most of the Zionist opposition too.  The 'centrist' Yesh Atid led by Yair Lapid has been one of the most hostile parties.

Israeli NGOs have already been the target of hostile legislation.  Last year they were forced to reveal prominently in their literature if they received more than half their funding from abroad.  [Israel passes law to force NGOs to reveal foreign funding]  The reason for this was in order to demonstrate that human rights activists are really traitors, who received their money from foreign governments.  Of course there was no obligation on other mainly right-wing groups or e.g. the most popular news paper Israel Hayom which is funded by US billionaire to reveal its funding.
Breaking the Silence speak out in Berlin
The aim of the new law is to ban organisations which seek to harm Israeli soldiers, whatever that means and which seek to put them on trial in international courts.  BTS which collects testimony from soldiers on the human rights violations of Israeli soldiers would be caught by this.
Yair Lapid of the 'centrist' Yesh Atid attacks Breaking the Silence alongside Israeli army officers

Netanyahu pushes for bill to ban Breaking the Silence, BDS NGOs

By Lahav Harkov,  Jerusalem Post, October 17, 2017 13:29

The bill would shut down Israeli groups that try to put IDF soldiers on trial in international courts.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu pauses while addressing attendees during the 70th session of the United Nations General Assembly at the U.N. Headquarters in New York, October 1, 2015. . (photo credit:CARLO ALLEGRI/REUTERS)
New legislation supported by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu would shut down any organization that seeks to harm IDF soldiers or try IDF soldiers in international courts.
The bill would also ban NGOs that promote a boycott of Israel or any area in its controls, meaning that it would apply to settlement boycotts, Channel 2 reported on Monday night.
The new details followed Sunday’s unanimous decision by the coalition to launch a two-pronged attack on foreign funding of political NGOs, consisting of a parliamentary commission of inquiry into “the involvement of foreign governments in the funding of political organizations and activities to harm IDF soldiers,” and legislation that will be more stringent than the current laws requiring organizations to report foreign funding and announce it publicly if more than half of their budget comes from a foreign political entity.
Israeli soldier poses with detainees
The vast majority of organizations that are mostly funded by foreign governments  – 25 of 27 NGOs listed by the Justice Ministry in 2016 – are left-wing.

Earlier this year, Netanyahu appointed Tourism Minister Yariv Levin to come up with a new bill on the topic, because he thought the existing laws are too permissive.

Closing Breaking the Silence, which collects testimony from former IDF soldiers claiming war crimes and airs them around the world, was reportedly specifically mentioned in discussions of what the legislation should entail.
Breaking the Silence Exhibition - Netanyahu wants to clamp down on such embarrassments
Breaking the Silence’s executive director Avner Gvaryahu said his organization “is here to stay, now and after Netanyahu,” and argued that the “persecution” of his NGO is a distraction from the investigations into alleged corruption by Netanyahu.

“This is yet another pitiful witch-hunt from a right-wing government that knows its days are numbered,” he stated. “Yet again, Netanyahu chooses to use IDF soldiers, who have broken the silence and oppose the occupation, as a human shield, deflecting the consequences of his own criminal entanglements. Neither a commission of inquiry nor legislation will deter us. There is only one way to stop Breaking the Silence: end the occupation."
Opinion The Right-wing Assault on Israeli Democracy

Chemi Shalev Haaretz, Oct 17, 2017 5:45 PM

The reported plan to declare the anti-occupation NGO Breaking the Silence illegal is an indication of Israel’s heavy-handed government and of its weakened democracy. It would be considered breaking news were it not for the fact that it is actually more of the same. The blacklisting of Breaking the Silence, which would surely serve as a gateway to banning more dissent, is part of the overall right-wing assault on the liberal democracy that Israel once aspired to be. Like the (apparently false) claim that a frog will tolerate water being heated up until it’s boiled to death, Israeli public opinion, including the part that was supposed to offer resistance, has adapted to the dismantlement in stages of the country’s democracy. If and when the public wakes up, it might very well be too late.

The onslaught is being executed on many fronts. It is a calculated and integrated campaign. To allow the government to enact anti-democratic laws as it sees fit, it must first revoke the authority of the High Court of Justice to nullify Knesset legislation. To diminish the stature of the court, the justice minister tries to clip its wings through legislation while her fellow coalition members delegitimize the High Court’s decisions and makeup. Without the threat of High Court nullification, right-wing lawmakers can start dreaming about remaking Israeli democracy into the Jewish ethnocracy they desire. To justify the required curtailment of equality and civil rights, Israeli Arabs are portrayed as a Fifth Column, opponents of the occupation become terrorist collaborators and demonstrators for the rule of law are dubbed anarchists and harassers. All the while, the government’s education commissar tries to edit academic freedom to make it conform to government policy and its culture czar threatens the livelihood of artists who challenge dogma and buck right-wing convention.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s efforts to save himself from what increasingly look like likely indictments only add fuel to the fire already consuming Israeli democracy. A frantic and haunted prime minister waging a personal vendetta against the media and the legal system for his own survival is a crucial element in the anti-democratic revolution. So the coalition stays silent when Netanyahu attacks the police just as they will look the other way when he will try to intimidate his potential Justice Ministry prosecutors, not to mention the ecstasy that engulfs right wingers whenever Netanyahu tries to torment the media. He launches bitter personal attacks on journalists, like Donald Trump on steroids, opens and closes public broadcasting stations, like Romania’s Nicolae Ceausescu or Turkey’s Recep Tayyip Erdogan, enforces regulations or relaxes the rules to send a message to reporters – but mainly to those who pay their salaries – that investigative exposés and biting criticism might not be the shortest avenue to fame and fortune.

The breaking and smashing frenzy, which is slated to peak in the Knesset’s upcoming winter session, is shared by cynical politicians and true fanatics. The former are looking for headlines that will grab their incited voters but the latter represent a comprehensive world view that derides Western and liberal values and seeks to replace them with an authoritarian regime in which Jews reign supreme. They want to discriminate between Jews and Arabs without knee-jerk liberals getting in their way, to grab Palestinian land while the High Court cowers in the corner, and to continue managing the occupation in darkness, without the rays of disinfecting sunlight occasionally shed by NGOs such as Breaking the Silence and B’Tselem.

This aggressive campaign is fed by the right wing’s perpetual self-victimization, orchestrated and conducted by Netanyahu himself, and by the arrogance of Likud politicians – and those from the national-religious Habayit Hayehudi (Jewish Home) Party even more so – who show no compunction about undermining the values that made Israel what it is today. Maybe their amok is a function of an urge to erase the last remnants of the Israel in whose creation and consolidation their political movements played only a minor role. After the mission is accomplished, the internal destroyers and demolishers of the Zionist revolution that created the state can continue pretending that they are its children and successors.

Friday, 20 October 2017

The Campaign Against Golders Green Mosque is the tip of the racist iceberg in Britain's Jewish community

Golders Green Together Facebook page could have been written by the BNP and Britain First

 The Centre for Islamic Enlightening bought up the Golders Green Hipperdrome, a former BBC concert hall, in the heart of Golders Green, in July.  Golders Green contains the highest concentration of Jews in any area of London – some 37% are Jewish compared to 26% Christian and 12% Muslims.
You might think that Jews, with their experience of racism, would welcome another religious minority seeking to establish a centre alongside them.  Think again.  Today’s Jews seem to have learnt nothing from the Jewish experience of racism.

Led by outright racists such as Zionist activist Ambrosine Yolanda Shitrit, who is usually to be found demonstrating alongside Paul Besser of the neo-Nazi Britain First, a group called Golders Green Together was formed to oppose the plans.  A look at their Facebook page gives you an indication of their politics. 

Racism and Islamaphobia - the Elephant in the Room of British Jewry

Golders Green Together [GGT] was formed last year as an anti-racist group to oppose a small demonstration by neo-Nazis led by one Joshua Bonehill-Paine in Golders Green.  The demonstration was later moved by the Police to Central London.  Now a bunch of Zionist racists and Jewish (& non-Jewish) Islamaphobes have taken over the name and subverted.

What is common to these people is that their fervent Zionism.  They take their cue from Israel’s hostility to Muslims and Arabs. Israel is an object of veneration by European and American fascists because it is seen as the ideal anti-Muslim state.  In Israel what is termed the ‘Jewish State’ is openly racist.  Legislation such as the recent Muezzin Law outlaws the Muslim call to prayer.  Last year the Northern Muslim League, a group with a large degree of support amongst Israel’s Palestinian minority, was banned by the government without even a pretence that it had broken any law.
it seems that there is also some skulduggery concerning addimg peoples' names to the racist petition
In the USA Steve Bannon’s Breitbart magazine, the flagship of the Alt-Right movement, combines White Supremacy, homophobia, hostility to feminism and anti-Semitism with fervent Zionism.  We have the neo-Nazi founder of the alt-Right, which organised the carnival of racism at Charlottesville, Richard Spencer describing himself as a White Zionist.
Campaign Against Antisemitism's Racist Portrait of Muslim Men
Groups like the misnamed Campaign Against Anti-Semitism have campaigned on the idea that Muslims are a reservoir of anti-Semitism stating openly that ‘it has long been suspected that sections of the British Muslim population harboured hatred towards British Jews.’  In 2016 they produced a Report  BRITISH MUSLIMS AND ANTISEMITISM to back up their Islamaphobic assertions.
The Reaction of the Jewish Establishment

With the Affair of the Golders Green Mosque, the Jewish establishment has reacted with something approaching horror to the racist base they are sitting on and have, up to now, encouraged.  Forget the nonsense about anti-Semitism causing only 13% of British Jews to vote Labour.  The real reason, which has been analysed by Jewish academics such as Geoffrey Alderman and William Rubinstein, is that they have climbed the socio-economic ladder.  Couple this with the support of many Jews for Israeli settler colonialism (59% declare they are Zionists according to the Attitudes of British Jews to Israel survey in 2015) and what you see is White racist supremacy in the heartland of British Jewry. 

Jews in Britain are no longer on the Left.  Support for Zionism is a mask for wider racist attitudes such as we are seeing now in Golders Green.

Both the Jewish Chronicle and Jewish News have both come out strongly against the racist campaign against the mosque.  This is to be welcomed but both papers have distinguished themselves by their uncritical support of Israel, its apartheid structures and its demonization of Arabs and Muslims. 
The 'liberal kapos' is a new one!
The Jewish News, to its credit said that they had refused to take a paid advert from the GGT hate mongers.  They also said that they had had to delete many ‘vile’ messages on the Internet including being called ‘kapos’, the Zionist term of abuse for anti-Zionists, which equates them with Jewish concentration camp guards.  The term was poplarised by David Friedman, Donald Trump’s bankruptcy lawyer and now US Ambassador in Israel.  

It is a rich irony that those who have been peddling Zionist race hate for so many years have now become victims of that hate!  The same Zionists who regularly called Jewish anti-Zionists ‘kapos’ ‘self-haters’ ‘traitors’ are now turning their fire on those of their comrades who aren’t willing to walk that extra racist mile in the fight against a Mosque.  After all where did those associations between Muslims and terrorism come from if not Israel and its associates?
The Jewish Chronicle in a remarkable editorial for it The Fig Leaf Objections compared the reaction of Jews in Golders Green to Moslems in Rotherham objecting to a synagogue.  Both would be, in its words, outrageous.  One can only presume that editor Stephen Pollard is on leave.

Local Rabbi Goldsmith made the point that the current reactions to a mosque are similar to the reaction to Jews when, in the 1920’s they moved to Golders Green. Laura Marks of the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust asked whether there would have been a similar reaction to a Christian centre moving to Golders Green and of course the answer is ‘no’ there wouldn’t. 
Zionist Tweeters fail to understand why Moslems are setting foot in a 'Jewish area' - Perhaps they have forgotten that Golders Green isn't a Jewish town in Israel
However Marks, a staunch member of the Zionist Establishment tries to play down the reaction to the Mosque.  She wrote in Why opponents of the Golders Green mosque must mind their language:
“[Some of] the language being used is simply not right.  Language has been misused by other evil regimes in subsequent genocides, and as Jews we always need to be very aware of this.

However she then pulls back and says ‘I wouldn’t for one moment suggest we are using Nazi language, but we must recognise the danger of what we say….”  This is cowardice.  The language being used by GGT is Nazi language and indeed there are neo-Nazis posting on the Facebook page.  Nearly all the FB comments are of a virulently racist nature.
Ambrosina Shitrit, 2nd left, Paul Besser of Britain 1st (left) and Hoffman (right
The reaction to the Mosque is driven by what one might call the activist wing of the Zionist movement – people like Jonathan Hoffman, Ambrosina Shitrit etc.  The horrified reaction of the Jewish Establishment is a product of its own work.  Year after year they have poured out vile propaganda against Arabs and Palestinians.  They have defended every racist action of the Israeli state and proclaimed that Israel’s murderous attacks on Gaza were an act of peace.  Is it any wonder that many Jews have assimilated the message that you can’t trust Muslims or Arabs?  These establishment worthies have gone along with everything Netanyahu has done and defended his demolition of homes, houses and even his call to Israeli Jews to vote because the Arabs are voting in droves.  The values of Zionism have seeped into the subconscious of British Jews and the petition to Barnet Council is the result.
Hoffman is able to see 'both sides of the debate' - for once
Ambrosina Shitrit's alter ego is 'Eyeonantisemitism'
Jonathan Hoffman and Zionist tropes
Jonathan Hoffman, the former Zionist Federation Vice Chair is cited in a report by the JTA as saying that ‘“There is a concern around this very divisive issue….There is concern about Muslim anti-Semitism.”  Hoffman went on to say that his comments don’t mean he personally opposes the new Centre, but merely that he understands both sides of the debate.
No doubt if there was a neo-Nazi campaign against a synagogue he would also ‘understand both sides of the debate’.  This comes from someone who has never understood the Palestinian side of the debate as he shouted down his opponents.

It is remarkably similar language to Donald Trump who instead of condemning the neo-Nazi violence at Charlottesville, instead condemned violence on ‘both sides’.

The JTA Report goes on to say that a 2008 study by the Community Security Trust attributed a third of all violent anti-Semitic incidents to perpetrators described as having an Arab or South Asian appearance.

Golder’s Green Facebook Page and the Vile Racist Comments of Zionists

The Golders Green Facebook page is a sewer of racist bigotry.  It is a testament to what British Zionists really think when the PR and hasbara is abandoned.

Under a post heading ‘Shocking revelations now come to light re Golders Green development of a mosque at BBC hippadrome’ we have Daniel Vulkan of Jewish Voice for Labour finding his racist neighbours comments most amusing.  

There is Ambrosine Yolanda Shitrit, who is normally happiest in the company of Britain First neo-Nazis, saying that the advent of the Mosque will change peoples’ minds with Rachelle Marks commenting that ‘hope they the Muslims go away and realise they are not wanted as we need a theatre not a MOSQUE.Rachelle then suggests that ‘they have a mosque in a side street where it won’t be noticed’.

Comments include:
Who are they praying to and what are they plotting? … Beware the Islamic takeover.
“Islamic colonialism – in the heart of what was the only uniquely Jewish area in the UK.”
A Robert Sur believes that unless ‘you welcome your conquerer with open arms you are a racist islamaphobic bigot’

whereas Helen Kissen believes the Jewish Chronicle should be renamed ‘the Muslem chronicle’

Robert Moshi informs us that ‘the liberal kapos dominate the media’ with surly Sur telling us he lost all respect for that ‘liberal rag’ when they printed an advert for the Gaza appeal some years ago.  The idea of printing a paid for ad for the victims of Israel’s bombing clearly doesn’t appeal to these kindly souls.  It must be the first time in a long time that the JC has been described as liberal.

Robert Young tells us how he can’t bear to see ‘that little dwarf hopping around in golders green’ a reference to the local Tory MP Mike Freer who has opposed the bigots.

Robert Young, who seems to be all over GGT’s Facebook page publishes an illustration of Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights on free speech and posts a link to the White Supremacist Breitbart News!

The Independent suggests that Young is a member of the neo-Nazi Britain First, the same group that former Zionist Federation Vice Chair Jonathan Hoffman works with.  What is interesting is how he is never criticised or called out for his openly racist and neo-Nazi views by others who post to the FB page. 

Young also informed people that the noise from the call to prayer and Muslim demonstrations would be unbearable.  He informs readers that
‘On Sunday the first they swarmed the whole area with a victory parade of cars with jihadi flags and inbreds with 2 different eye-sizes. 

Clearly Mr Young’s talents are underused.  He could have been employed on Der Sturmer had the paper still been going.  But there is still no reaction to these overtly racist comments.  In fact Young attracted 3 'likes' for his comment about 'inbreds'.
Robert Sur echoes what the Jewish Chronicle said in its Leader, that parking is a pretext for racist bigotry:
‘I am the only one with the guts to say what everybody else is thinking.  It has nothing to do with parking or traffic.  We don’t want a mosque there and who can blame us?  Those Muslims purposely picked Golders Green because it is a Jewish area.  They want to stamp us out as they have in so many other countries.’  Clearly Sur doesn’t just speak for himself as he has 4 likes – A Francesco replies in what must be a humourous comment that ‘I wouldn't be surprised if the JC was a militant lefty newspaper...’ 

A common theme among the posters is that ‘they’ want to take us over.’  Zionist activist Shitrit is at the heart of them.  Her main theme seems to be that as they have some non-Jewish racists alongside them then it’s alright. 

Other activists such as Herutnik Neal Cohen is convinced that it is all a Muslim plot.  Sur and many others reserve much of their bile for people like Laura Marks:  ‘gutless sheep. She'd hand the hangman the rope.’
Far-Right Islamaphobic Gatestone Institute is posted on GGT FB page
An article from the far-Right Islamaphobic Gatestone Institute in the USA is posted, again without any protest despite its record of publishing fake news about no-go Muslim areas in Europe and its hosting racists such as Geert Wilders.

Robert Sur speaks for many when he recalls the Gaza advert in the Jewish Chronicle.  I remember that Gaza appeal. Those Jews make me wanna vomit’

One would think from reading these comments that the JC was a fully signed up supporter of the Palestinians rather than the Zionist rag that it actually is.  But the overt Zionism of the contributors stands out because that is where their racism comes from – Israel.

Haaretz 14.10.2017 12:07 Updated: 12:08 PM

Move to turn Golders Green Hippodrome into an Islamic Shia center has seemingly split the local Jewish community, with some reactions being labeled 'Islamophobic'

The Golders Green Hippodrome, which might host the Hussainiyat Al-Rasool Al-Adham mosque and Islamic center. Wikimedia Commons

Plans to open a mosque in one of Britain's best-known Jewish communities has sparked a heated response from some locals, leading to accusations of Islamophobia.

The Jewish Chronicle has been reporting on the increasingly fractious developments in recent weeks after the iconic Golders Green Hippodrome – formerly a BBC concert hall seating some 3,000 people – was bought earlier this year by the Centre for Islamic Enlightening, for £5.25 million ($7 million).

The group's spokesman, Ahmed al-Kazemi, was quoted in the Jewish Chronicle as saying that the building would house the Hussainiyat Al-Rasool Al-Adham mosque and Islamic center, serving northwest London's Shia community.

The JC also reported that a petition complaining about the plan was posted on the local Barnet Council's website and received over 4,000 signatures, compared with 93 comments in favor of the mosque.

While some local residents voiced concerns about traffic jams and noise pollution, others questioned the arrival of Muslim worshippers in an area that is famously noted for its Jewish community.

One local resident wrote on the Barnet website that the move would “force the Jewish population to run away,” while another said placing "a large Muslim institution in the heart of one of London’s only two Jewish communities is a highly dangerous undertaking."

However, a prominent local rabbi, Mark Goldsmith, has criticized the comments coming from some members of the community.

"Things have been said about it being the largest mosque in Europe, and that the Shia community is a threat," Goldsmith told the JC. "That language is threatening and misleading.

“I suspect it’s the same sort of thing said about Jews moving to Golders Green in the 1920s," he added. "Golders Green is not entirely Jewish. It’s a special place to live in and we all get along together. That’s what London is about.”

Golders Green, in northwest London, has been home to a large Jewish community since the 1950s. In the most recent census, some 37 percent of the suburb was Jewish, compared to 26 percent being Christian and 12 percent Muslim. (Britain's largest Jewish population is situated further north, in Borehamwood, on the outskirts of London.)

Writing for the JC, Laura Marks – the chair of the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust – questioned whether there would have been a similar response if a Christian center were being established at the site.
Shitrit faking amazement that GGT has managed to attract some non-Jewish racists as well
 "Reading some of the comments on various chat groups by those opposed sent a shiver down my spine," Marks wrote.

"Comments such as 'We don’t know what they are preaching as it's all in Arabic,' 'This will result in violence and terrorism' and 'There is a chance of infiltration of bombers' are Islamophobia plain and simple," she observed.

Marks added: "I wouldn’t for one moment suggest we are using Nazi language, but we must recognise the danger of what we say and how that fuels mistrust, separation, prejudice and hatred."

Although the online petition closed on Friday, the fight looks set to continue in the months ahead.

The Islamic center hopes to open its doors for an initial Open Day in December, with its spokesman, Kazemi, being quoted in the JC as saying, "We are very pleased and excited to be in Golders Green in such a diverse area. We can’t wait to get to know our neighbors."

Below is a section of Screenprints with some of the racist filth