I took off an hour or so from the Culture of Resistance Conference to go and join the picket at Ahava. After direct action this week by 2 activists, who chained themselves to a concrete block, once again getting arrested for aggravated trespass, the picket was a quiet affair.
Arriving at about 12.45 I was surprised that the Zionists friends the EDL hadn’t turned up. They have a demonstration this week spreading their message of hate at Nuneaton, so they couldn’t afford to join their bigots in arms at Ahava to support Zionist theft in the West Bank. And even Jonathan Hoffman didn’t turn up till gone 1.00, leaving the hapless Martin Sugarman, one of those who heckled Holocaust survivor, Haja Meyer, at the Holocaust Memorial Day commemoration last year.
Rumour has it that the EDL is somewhat miffed with the Zionists for turning down all their suggestions, such as having 2 of them sleep overnight in Ahava to keep out anyone wanting to chain themselves to concrete! And despite the best efforts of Hoffman to make them feel wanted, they feel their efforts have become taken for granted by the Zionists who don't even make them officially feel at home as the Zionists can't afford to openly welcome them!
The Zionists seemed to shuffle about in embarrassment as the shop did next to no trade on a busy Saturday afternoon. Even the police outnumbered them. One unnamed Zionist, having nothing with which to defend the Zionist theft of Palestinian resources on the West Bank foamed at the mouth about us ‘anti-Semites’ until I pointed out that it was they who demonstrated with anti-Semites every other week! He then turned on my family instead! Strange man. And even stranger was a Welsh Christian Zionist flying the Israeli flag who seemed eager to distance himself from the Revelations crowd of baptists who want the Jews return to the Holy Land in order that they can then be immolated and secure the return of the Messiah. He accepted that they were most of them anti-Semites.
Finally a bad tempered and ill at lease Jonathan Hoffman turned up. At one stage he was shouting in the face of Bruce Levy, who quite remarkably kept his cool. Hoffman’s face was literally contorted with rage as he saw all round him disintegrate, along with his career in the Zionist Federation.
However truth be said, the turn out on the Palestinian side was also considerably down and people weren’t very vocal until Jonathan turned up. One has to hand it to him. He always enlivens us up to do more, not least in this case chant, and led by Bruce and me crying ‘Don’t Buy Stolen Goods Boycott Ahava’ we got quite a good bout of chanting going. The Zionists bar Hoffman preferred to keep quiet, possibly feeling the cold even more than we. It was therefore with great reluctance that I departed this merry scene, Hoffman still scowling for all he was worth!