29 May 2012

The Globe Brings the West Bank to London to Allow the Merchant of Venice to Go Ahead

Excellent and impartial review of how the security last night affected the whole performance.  

Only Airport Security and Dozens of Security Goons & Police Allows Habima's Performance to Go Ahead

Left - Protest outside as seen from window of the Globe
Add caption
Protestor with Mouth Taped   - left

As Bob Dylan noted, there’s no success like failure, but failure’s no success at all.  So it was with Habimah’s distinctively unimpressive Merchant of Venice.  Indeed it is ironic that the ‘Jewish’ State's only contribution to the Globe’s Shakespeare Festival was to stage a recreation of Shylock and Shakespeare’s depiction of Venetian anti-Semitism.

After a group of us had met at a secret location in Central London we made our way to the Globe.  We had no illusions that the security in place would make our job difficult but in a sense it didn’t matter.  The very fact that Zionist Theatre can only perform under unprecedented lock-down conditions guaranteed that we had already won.

There was an especially large police presence to ensure that the theatre production could go ahead.

I was convinced that I personally wouldn’t get in, being one of the better known anti-Zionists on the scene.  However the triumph of innocence won out as I strolled passed the intense security and a blind Jonathan Hoffman to take my position in the ‘pit’.

No sooner had the performance begun than the interruptions began.  A group of women in the balcony unfolded a banner and were the object of the attentions of some quite vicious stewarding but to no avail.  One of the women, who shall remain nameless, persisted in her protest throughout the first half, having a large plaster across her mouth to symbolise the silenced voice of the Palestinians.

I was caught by Zionist spotters in the interlude before I could add a harmonious touch but my place was easily filled by others who congregated in the pit.  It was somewhat amusing as Jonathan Hoffman’s even uglier twin, Harvey Garfield and a screaming Martin Sugarman and another Zionist decided to try to detain me.  Unfortunately the overweight Harvey appeared to stumble under his own weight and like all Zionist aggressors started squealing about having been assaulted.  However I had no problem persuading the police that I was lawfully entitled to resist an unprovoked physical attack which was common assault.  The Zionists thought better of trying to have me arrested and I was released without charge.

Given the assaults by the security goons on other protestors, the fact that one protestor has been detained on suspicion of attacking a goon is ludicrous.

When I emerged into the sunshine there was still a healthy Palestinian demonstration and no sign of the Zionists.   Meanwhile the Piza Express opposite functioned as our media centre.  Truth and justice had won out as we made it clear that Brand Israel and the Culture of Genocide will no longer be allowed a free pass.

Below are a few other articles including from Y-Net, Israel's Yediot Aharnot on-line.

Palestinians disrupt Habima performance in London

Pro-Palestinians demonstrating against national company's performances in the West Bank, disrupt showing of The Merchant of Venice at London's Globe Theater

Rona Zinman, Published:     05.28.12, 23:08    

The show must go on: Pro-Palestinian protestors disrupted the performance of the Habima National Theater Company's The Merchant of Venice at the Globe Theater in London on Monday, but the actors proved they were true professionals – carrying on with the show.

During the performance, a new Hebrew production of the Merchant of Venice which is part of the "Globe to Globe" festival, some 10 Palestinian demonstrators in the audience suddenly began waving Palestinian flags and signs against Israel.

Security personnel removed them from the theater. Later on, another group stood up with band-aids plastered to their mouths.

The protests began outside the theater with dozens standing with Palestinian flags and signs calling for an end to the "Israeli Apartheid regime" as well as for a boycott on Israeli products.

The Pro-Palestinians were demonstrating against the Habima performance over the fact that Israel's national theater company previously performed in the West Bank.

Meanwhile, pro-Israeli demonstrators also gathered outside the theater waving Israeli flags with signs that read: Culture unites, Boycotts divide. They also expressed their support for the Israeli actors.

Israel’s UK embassy plans Twitter campaign against boycott of Tel Aviv theater group

Submitted by Ben White on Sat, 05/26/2012 - 05:43

The Israeli embassy and Zionist groups in Britain are coordinating a “social media” campaign to counter calls to boycott performances by the Tel Aviv-based drama group Habima in London’s Globe theater.

On Friday afternoon, the Liverpool Jewish Community sent out an email with the heading “An Important Message from the Israeli Embassy”. The email contained step by step instructions for a planned Twitter campaign this coming Tuesday, designed to trend the hashtag #LoveCulture.

The email begins (my emphasis):

As part of the campaign around Habima’s performance at the Globe this coming week, we are aiming to get something relevant trending on Twitter. After careful consideration, we have decided to use the hashtag #LoveCulture as it is short enough to fit on a substantial tweet and won’t be taken at first glance as a political statement.

It continues:

we will start tweeting with #LoveCulture at 08:00 UK Time (which is GMT +1) on Tuesday 29 May

The message from the Israeli embassy also includes specific suggestions about what to tweet:

Examples of tweets that you can use (please try and edit them) are:

Great to see @HabimaTheatre celebrating the Cultural Olympiad @the_globe…all the world’s a stage #LoveCulture
Fantastic seeing the foremost Hebrew speaking theater company perform the Merchant of Venice @the_globe #LoveCulture
Was great to hear @edvaizey enjoyed watching @HabimaTheatre…did he understand any of it though? #LoveCulture
Jealous of all those off to see sold out @HabimaTheatre at @the_globe tonight…last night was great #LoveCulture

The message concludes by saying that any questions should be directed to two email addresses: pr-asst3@london.mfa.gov.il and elliot@thejlc.org

The former is clearly associated with the Israeli embassy in London, while the latter is the address for Elliot Jebreel, public affairs officer for the Jewish Leadership Council (JLC) whose role includes implementing “the JLC’s social media strategy.”

It seems some were too excited to wait until the appointed hour, since on Friday morning, the #LoveCulture hashtag had already been used in relation to Habima, which has previously performed in illegal Jewish-only settlements in the West Bank. One use of the hashtag was by the Labour Friends of Israel account, another by Jeremy Newmark – CEO of the Jewish Leadership Council – and also by an account with no followers and only two tweets.

Just this last week, leaders from pro-Israel groups in Britain were presenting evidence to a subcommittee in the Knesset (Israel’s parliament) on “Zionism in Britain”, chaired by Knesset member Einat Wilf. Amusingly, the meeting was originally going to be called “UK: World Leader in Anti-Israel Rhetoric,” but “after concerns from the British attendees…Wilf agreed to tone it down.”

The Israeli embassy’s effort to counter the boycott call comes as The Globe’s management prepares for the performances by issuing extraordinary “conditions of entry” restrictions to ticket-holders, including:

the right to refuse admission to anyone we have reason to believe may cause a disruption to the performance.

This raises the question of how exactly the Globe is going about identifying potential “disruptors.” An article in the Israeli newspaper Haaretz mentioned that the “list of regulations” followed “discussions with London’s Metropolitan Police.” A piece in the Times of Israel noted that “the Globe says that it is taking ‘all necessary precautions’ to make sure that the performances can proceed smoothly”, but “will not disclose any details.”

The call to boycott Habima has already been a significant embarrassment for Israel advocates in Britain, with the public debate often focused on how best to respond to Israeli human rights abuses (rather than on whether those abuses are fact or not).

Even before the Israeli foreign ministry-funded performances, it all adds up to be a failure for Israel’s brand of propaganda or hasbara, as it’s known in Hebrew. Habima’s general manager might see the Globe’s invitation as an “honorable accomplishment for the State of Israel in general” but it looks more like a hasbara farce.

27 May 2012

Atzmon’s Rottweiller, Sarah Gillespie, Attacks Omar Barghouti and Opposes the Boycott and Disruption of Habimah

A Question to the Palestinian Right - Where Does Your Loyalty Lie?  With a Gilad Atzmon or with the Supporters of BDS?

Atzmon and his poisonous friend Sarah Gillespie

Blowing his own trumpet
Omar Barghouti
Atzmon Believes They Should Perform Unmolested - Unlike the Freedom Theatre in Jenin

Gillespies  rang against Omar Barghouti

Zionist poster

When I used to point to the fact that all the arguments of Atzmon led in one direction people tended to be dismissive.  Not any more.  Atzmon's arguments, that to be Jewish is to be a Zionist, that focussing on Jews outside Israel as the cause of Zionism is to look through the telescope from the wrong end, take on a certain relevance now he has come out against BDS.  It let the real criminals off the hook and excuses imperialism and Zionism.  Many people who should have known better asked me 'but surely Atzmon supports the Palestinians.  He even does benefits for Medical Aid for Palestine (no longer!).'

The logic of Atzmon's argument was underwhelming.  Focussing on Jews as Jews, no matter how wretched and abhorrent the Jonathan Hoffmans and Alan Dershowitzes of this world are, was to miss the point.  It isn’t the Zionist cacophony in this country or Aipac in the USA that ‘controls’ Israel, rather it is US geo-political interests and its representation via groups like Christians United for Israel.  Jews provided what was becoming an increasingly thin cover for the US military - industrial complex.

It is no coincidence that when activists are gearing up to picket and protest against Israel’s national theatre, Habimah, Atzmon and his poisonous wretch of a sidekick, Sarah Gillespie, spend their time attacking BDS, in particular making vicious personal attacks on Omar Barghouti,.  Omar is one of the most courageous and principled people I’ve met.  He is a founder of the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI).  Yet he is criticised for studying at Tel Aviv Univesity.  Apparently he should be boycotting his own education.  Perhaps he should boycott Israeli food and starve too!

It was always recognised in South Africa that those we aimed to help and give solidarity to, Black South Africans had no choice but to buy South African goods, to work in their mines etc.  Instead, in the guise of being supermoralists, Atzmon and Gillespie, make demands on Palestinians whilst finding excuses to do nothing themselves.  Indeed this was a prime argument of the supporters of Apartheid in South Africa.  There was nothing they wished to do than discredit the opponents of Apartheid.

PACBI released a statement branding the calls to expel Barghouti as "McCarthyist".   PACBI defended Barghouti by asserting that requiring Palestinians to boycott Israeli universities themselves as a prerequisite to endorsing the BDS call is "an absurd position, given the complete lack of alternatives available" to them and that it would effectively amount to requiring Palestinians to deny themselves education. PACBI's statement also adds that "Nelson Mandela studied law at the Witwatersrand University in Johannesburg, one of the most notorious apartheid institutes then. Similarly, leaders of the anti-colonial resistance movement in India and Egypt, among many other countries, received their education at British universities at the height of the colonial era."  But Atzmon and Gillespie are nothing if not stupid as well as ignorant. 

But let us deal with the question of studying at Tel Aviv University.  Firstly we don’t and never have supported boycotting Israelis as Israelis.  Otherwise we would boycott Israeli anti-Zionist academics.  Absurd.  You don’t boycott friends of the struggle.  In fact we don’t boycott individuals but institutions.  Apart from it being directly discriminatory it makes no sense.  People like Professor Avi Shlaim or Ilan Pappe have contributed enormously to the struggle.  They have provided the analysis and documentation from Israeli archives that have helped us understand the Nakba and what led up to it better.  What purpose would be served by boycotting them?

Boycott is a tactic not an abstract moral value.  I would have, unlike the Zionists who preferred to trade with them, boycotted Nazi Germany.  Why?  To support anti-fascist Germans as well as Jews.  What purpose would have been solved to have boycottted German socialists, those who were not already in Dachau concentration camp?  Even the most wooden-headed moralist would understand the stupidity of that.  What Atzmon and Gillespie are saying is that we should boycott those who suffer most.

Do we say Arab Israelis should boycott Israeli universities?  Of course not.  We demand that Arabs are not discriminated against in Israeli higher education not that they receive no education whatsoever.  When Omar is called a hypocrite for attending an Israeli university by Gillespie, she is doing no more than echoing Zionist propaganda. 

Engage, the anti-boycott Zionist group, set up to oppose the Boycott, has this to say.  In fact it makes exactly the same points as Gillespie: ‘But Barghouti has decided not to boycott Israeli academia himself.  He is now enrolled to study for a PhD at Tel Aviv University.  What is “imperative” for others is, apparently, not quite so “imperative” for himself.’ 

Likewise from another Zionist site we have Omar Barghouti: Apartheid Hypocrite

But none of this is new.  In an interview ‘Tangling with the Oppressor - What really matters is what Palestinians Do’ in  July 5, 2007, just after the academic boycott began in earnest, Atzmon made clear his views on the boycott in an ‘http://peacepalestine.blogspot.com/2007/07/gilad-atzmon-interview-tangling-with.html with his then friend and collaborator, the anti-Semitic Mary Rizzo:  
‘interfering with academic freedom isn’t exactly something I can blindly advocate. … I am against any form of gatekeeping or book burning. But it goes further, I actually want to hear what Israelis and Zionists have to say. I want to read their books. I want to confront their academics.’ ‘to impose a boycott is to employ a boycotter.'  
To Atzmon it has been a consisten theme:  Boycott is no different from (Nazi) book burning, a line that comes directly from the Zionists again.  But at the time I believed that this might be partly due to the fact that the main proponents of an academic boycott, like Sue Blackwell, were vehement opponents of Atzmon’s anti-Semitism.  Atzmon at that time had been subject to some much criticism.  He continued that ‘When it comes to an academic boycott I would expect the inquisitor in charge to be a scholar of great esteem. This isn’t the case obviously. The reason is simple. As it naturally happens, major intellectuals are engaged in scholarship rather than in union politics, working class and proletarian activity. Seemingly, it isn’t the leading minds in British academic life and ethical thinking who are leading the Boycott. In fact it is the other way around, the boycott is led by some minor academics.’   This was a pointed reference to Dr Sue Blackwell, who at that stage had yet to complete her Ph D thesis.

But I was mistaken.  Atzmon was sincere in his opposition to an academic boycott.

Sarah Gillespie’s doesn’t pretend, like Atzmon, to be an intellectual.  She is his foul-mouthed rottweiller as well as being his ‘musical partner… an incredible musician. But she is also an astonishing writer and a real friend.’

On his new ‘deliberation’ site, Atzmon makes clear his own position:  ‘I think that we should all say NO to Book Burning , Zionist or BDS… the principle is the same and it is always wrong !!!’   And it is clear.  Atzmon is opposed to the ONLY tactic that has the Zionist deligitimisation indusry, the Reut Institute and all the other hasbarists up in arms. 

BDS as was the case in South Africa is the only game in town.  It has all but been outlawed by the Israeli government.  To support boycott in Israel is to court unlimited damages in tort.  This an unprecedented attack on a political opinion and even within the Zionist movement there are those who had taken exception to this attack on the supporters of BDS.  In Britain and the USA even those non-Zionist peace organisations like JfJP and Jewish Voice for Peace, which have been reluctant to support BDS, have realised that without pressure the Israeli government will not reform.  They have slowly but surely moved towards a boycott position as has the Co-operative Group.

Anyone who remembers South Africa knows that it was the Sporting and Cultural Boycotts that led to the economic boycott.  The former attacked the psychological siege mentalit of the Whites, making it clear to them that their practices were disapproved and their days numbered.  So it is with Israel.  Of course the more thick-headed Beitar supporter won’t get it, anymore than the numbskull Afrikaaner die-had did.  But the businessman, the financier, the banker and capitalist certainly do understand it.

If you want to understand the impact of Boycott you could do worse than read the semi-official Egyptian newspaper Al Ahram Peaceful blitzkreig and Israeli counter-attacks

I was pointed to a virulent and venomoys attack on BDS and Omar Barghouti by Gillespie on Ben White’s blog.

I can only pay tribute to both his and Simone McDonnel for the way they kept their cool with the racist ignoramus who makes it clear, as a sub-text, that Omar Barghouti is now also the subject of the Atzmon/Gillespie vendetta for daring to sign the letter Granting no Quarter’ criticising Atzmon’s Zionism and anti-Semitism.

The exchange is interesting, not least for the misconception that the anti-Semitic Gillespie (& Atzmon)  have concerning Boycott.  Gillespie makes her opposition to a Boycott clear when she says that:
‘Prohibiting Israeli actors from performing Shakespeare’s most anti-Semitic play will have zero impact on those suffering in Palestine.  Boycotting goods makes sense, boycotting artists and academics is a form of book burning.’ 
She too characterises Boycott as book-burning, something the Zionists aren’t shy of alleging.  But the idea that it ‘will have zero impact on those suffering in Palestine’ is a lie.  Anything which demoralises the Afrikaaner in the Israeli psyche cannot help but undermine the settler spirit.

And then we have the absurdity of Gillespie’s position.  ‘Following the logic of the cultural/academic boycott we wouldk have to boycott   Palestinian BDS campaigner Omar Barghouti who currently studies in Tel Aviv University.  We would also have to boycott Shlmo Sands who’s done more than anyone to dismantle the nation of belonging to a ‘chosen land.’….’  Of course this is twaddle.  The aim of a Boycott is to lend support to Arab Israelis and campaigners like Omar Barghouti, not to further intensify the oppression they experience.  And likewise we do not boycott Israeli anti-Zionists.  In fact we do not boycott Israelis unless it is because of their overt racism.  Ze’ev Sternhell is a Zionist.  He considers himself, rightly to be an anti-fascist and was the target of a bomb attack by settlers, injuring him, a year ago.  I would oppose a boycott of him.  He is wrong about Zionism but to boycott him would be wrong.

Simone McDonnel asks: 'Why would OB and SS have to be boycottted specifically?  I don’t think that follows the cultural/academic boycott at all.  The boycott is on institutions, not individuals, and as you mention Sands and Barghouti play an exceptional role in undermining the racism and crimes of the apartheid state and institutions in which they study/work.’  Unanswerable logic but we then see the real agenda of Rottweiller Gillestpie.

Just like the good Engage-style Zionist she is, Gillespie attacks the ‘Hypocrite Barghouti’ for being a student at Tel-Aviv University.  Ludicrously she suggests, following her own lack of logic that ‘The boycott of Israel academia must invariably include both figures.’   And we come to the crux of her concerns.  ‘I certainly don’t recall the Apartheid regime enjoying the most powerful lobby group in the US.  I don’t recall the Apartheid Friends of Labour Org in the UK – nor do I recall British lawyers abandoning Universal Jurisdiction   to allow SA leaders to trvel freely.  In short, Israel is uique in that it is maintained by Zionists across the globe on the Left and the Right.  Boycottting academics and artists who happen to be born within the permiters of Israeli sovereignty is futile.  Who cares if some art-house Israeli movie gets refused from European film festivals when you’ve got Steven Spielberg’s Munich growwing  $130,358,911 worldwide?’

Well Palestinians care.  And I don't recall South African politicians ever being subject to the fear of arrest.  They didn't need a lobby but they did have one in the financial and commercial world.

And there you have it.  It is Jews as Jews, like Spielberg who should really be boycotted. This is indeed an anti-Semitic boycott.  And furthermore, it is counterposed to a boycott of Israel.  It is Jews outside Israel who are responsible for Israel’s actions.  It is they, not Israel, which should be boycottted.  Simone McDeonnell is nothing if not patient.
As for cultural boycotts being futile.  I find it confusing that anyone who is pro-palestinian and anti-zionist would not support mass campaigns that expose Israel and it's apartheid crimes to the world.When the Israeli Philharmonic Orchestra was interrupted by pro palestine protestors in London last year it made world-wide news, and it is evident in the past few years, that campaigns like BDS are drawing attention to Israel and it's brutalities in a way that is shifting opinions. The mass protests against the Springbok Rugby team (South Africa) around the world and other such boycotts of South African sporting/cultural/academic projects etc, contribtuted significantly to world-wide condemnation of the SA aparthied regime, strenghtening the resolve of SA workers to smash it.’
I couldn’t put it better though I don’t know if Simone is aware of the background of Gillespie and her virulent anti-Semitic background.  But she is absolutely correct.  The disruption of the Israeli Philharmonic Orchestra was indeed a massive success.  So successful that they threatened never to come back to the UK!! 

But this is nothing new. When BDS activists disrupted the Israeli Philharmonic Orchestra Atzmon’s sent me the following e-mail (Thursday, 22 September 2011, 17:00): 
‘We loved your opposition and we also loved your Jewish campaign against the Jewish philharmony is never boring you :)’  and later the same night Atzmon explained his hostility to the Albert Hall action.

‘Do you really think that BDS enthusiasts are blind to your Judeo centric actions and motivations? How are you going to protect Pls artists from similar Zionist actions... tragically, you are not Pls solidarity campaigners, you are merely anti Zionists.’
The question is how long a few Palestinians are going to continue to give support to the Zionist Atzmon whose association with the Palestinians has more to do with his ego than the Palestinians.  Atzmon’s only support to the Palestinians has been to play at charitable concerts, which we have never picketted, though we would prefer groups not to use an anti-Semite to raise funds.  But now Atzmon and his side-kick Gillespie are actively scabbing on the BDS campaign and also attacking the key person who had been identified with that campaign, Omar Barghouti.

The question Professor Samir Abed-Rabbo, Sameh Habeeb, Ramzi Baroud and others need to answer is a simple one.  Where does your loyalty lie?  To a racist Israeli √©migr√© or to the cause of Boycott Divestment and Sanctions and those, like Omar and Ali Abunimah who have consistently fought to build it.  Are you willing to continue to be used and flattered in the cause of Israel?

26 May 2012

Community Security Trust Defends Lieberman and His Fascist Supporters

CST's Friends in Gather in Brighton
Hoffman Looks on Approvingly as Demonstrator is Called a 'Paki' 

I would like to say that the Zionist Security Trust (CST) is an anti-racist organisation or that it at least purports to be such.  But that would be wrong.  The CST makes no such claim. ‘CST believes that the fight against antisemitism and terrorism is an integral part of safeguarding our wider democratic British society against extremism and hatred.’  Nothing about racism there.

And its concentration on anti-Semitism always relates to Israel.  Hence why you will never see the CST defending anti-Zionist Jews against anti-Semitism from other Jews – on the contrary – I’ve been told quite explicitly by CST spokesperson, Mark Gardener, that being told I should have died with my family in Auschwitz is not anti-Semitism if a Jew says it.

This is not surprising since the CST openly works with the Metropolitan Police to deport and bar from Britain ‘Islamic extremists’ like Sheikh Raed Salah.  This raised new lows when the CST used the evidence of a nakedly racist Zionist professor

Here are some of the sayings of the racist professor that the CST quoted to stop Raed Salah, leader of the Islamic movement in Northern Israel and a victim of extreme racism himself:

‘Muslim immigrants had a reputation for manipulating the values of Western countries, taking advantage of their hospitality and tolerance.’ ‘"French people say they are strangers in their own country. This is a point of no return.’

‘When the Muslim population gets to a critical mass you have problems. That is a general rule, so if it applies everywhere it applies in Australia." and ‘Australia should cap Muslim immigration or risk being swamped by Indonesians.’

The fight against ‘terrorism’ is its priority – the fight against an adverb.  In other words, racism is only of concern to it when its targets are Jews.  Otherwise it is ‘terrorism’ an infinitely elastic concern which is its primary concern.  Terrorism of course is the excuse our leaders use when they want to go to war.  And in particular its Israel’s excuse for threatening anyone who gets in its way.

Last Tuesday I and about 60 other protestors went to protest against Israel’s fascist foreign minister, Avigdor Lieberman.  Lieberman’s party, Yisrael Beteinu, is a hard-right political party in government in Israel.  Its supporters are well known for their chant on demonstrations, notably ‘death to the Arabs.’  In Poland and Romani pre-war, the chant was ‘death to the Jews’.  The principle remains the same even if the target has changed.

Yet what was the CST’s reaction to my story on the picket of Lieberman.  Support? Neutrality even?  Nothing of the sort. Despite the fact that one of the counterdemonstrators was calling a Pakistani cameraman a ‘paki’ and telling him to go back to Pakistan, standing side by side with Zionist vice-chairman Jonathan Hoffman, who is an old lag when it comes to demonstrating with the EDL, the CST –  said nothing about the fascists and attacked the anti-racists they said nothing.  As for Hoffman, the most virulent racism doesn’t in the slightest disturb him.  And saying nothing in this situation means giving support to the racist twerp, especially when they then have the nerve to attack the opposition.

CST Complains about 'racism' of anti-racist protestors
In their article ‘Boycott Israel: Zionists are “the most hateful people imaginable”
 they ignore the overt anti-Black and Asian racism of the Zionist demonstrators to concentrate exclusively on the Palestinian and PSC opposition.  In particular they concentrate on the title of my blog – ‘in the Belly of the  Beast.’  Apparently it is a reference to the Jewish community in Hendon.

Anyone with 2 brain cells to rub together would know that I wasn’t referring to the Jewish community as a whole but to the fact that the Jewish community harbours Jewish fascist supporters of Lieberman, as clearly it did.  So we were going into an area which contained a considerable number of fascists.  Hence the title.  It would have been the same as saying in the 30s that some parts of the East End, like Hoxton, were the belly of the fascist beast because they were all-white and non-Jewish.  Does that mean all its inhabitants or even a majority were beasts?  No of course not, but the fascists that the CST defended on Tuesday night including EDL and Kach Members  were quite clearly beasts.  And our understanding is that a considerable number of both Kach and also Beitar fascists were present as was the ‘Jewish’ Division of the EDL.  Of them Gardener has nothing to say.

As Adam Langleben, a liberal Zionist, makes clear, very few of Hendon’s Jewish community came out to demonstrate with Hoffie & co.  But those few who were did were ultra-rightist racists or out and out fascists or supporters of Jonathan Hoffman, who is used to playing tag with fascists.

But CST witters that “Mad, Brainwashed, Zionist Crazies” is how the boycotters talk about people who turned out to oppose an anti-Israel demonstration in the midst of their Jewish neighbourhood.   Yes and what is the point?  If anything the title is too kind.  'The organisers of this opposition have condemned the handful of people who stupidly support the racist Kach movement. Again, such distinctions are ignored by the anti-Israel boycotters, the haters of any and all Zionists.’   So Kach are just stupid?  And Lieberman’s supporters?  The death to the Arabs hordes?  Also stupid or maybe good Zionists.

What the CST won’t face up to is that far-right sponsors of the CST, its funders, like jailbird Gerald Ronson and Dixon’s owner Stanley Kalms, believe in transfer of Palestinians from Israel.  Lieberman and Kach also support this neo-Nazi policy and the CST is bound to give its unspoken support to it.  Hence why they never condemn Zionist racism and instead concentrate upon words rather than Zionist deeds.

But yes we condemned all those who turned out to the anti-Palestinian/pro-Lieberman demonstration.  Such as the Zionist harlot who told an elderly Jewish woman that ‘I want to punch you, you fucking terrorist.’  This has been reported to the police and we do have a photo of the scumbag and a witness so she may have her day in court and jail where her own fucking head might be altered for the better.

Apparently calling the demonstrators “rich, Zionist kids” is ‘another sneer, another spit of contempt, with a hint of rich Jew chucked in for ugly measure.’  Ah a hint, what about the naked racism of Israel’s supporters?   No hints there.  It’s all up front.  But with £130,000+ salary Gardener is paid to sniff out hints and ignore reality.

Of course Hendon has council estates.  Black people live there primarily (and no doubt a few Jews, but Jews have moved up socio-economically – that’s a fact)  but the support we got marching back to Hendon station was from Black youth who also detest these rich Zionist scum.

And the comment I printed about the Jewish liberal blogger who was shocked at the naked racism shows that not all Jews approve of the racism of Kach, Hoffman or indeed Mark Gardener and his CST pals. 

And there has been silence over the 2 Zionist activists who were arrested smashing a car window of protestors.  Unfortunately for them they were apprehended by an off-duty policeman.  The Chief Constable of Wiltshire Police no less.  Clearly the Lord Moves in Mysterious Ways!

Let us have an example of the racism that the CST defends.  Israeli Government Minister Eli Yishai, who the BNP have openly supported Israel to ‘Protect its Jewish nature’ by Building Concentration Camp for 10,000 African “Infiltrators”  An article ‘Yishai: We'll Fine Any Mayor Who Employs Infiltrators’ explains how ‘Interior Minister Eli Yishai announces he will begin to impose fines on any mayors who employ immigrants from Africa.’  All in the name of Zionism of course!
CST stewarded marshalling attack on PSC supporters
The fascist that CST and Hoffman support
Liberal Jewish blog exposes naked racism of CST and Hoffman's friends
Interior Minister Eli Yishai announced on Thursday that he will impose fines on any mayors who employ immigrants from Africa.

Yishai announced that he plans to distribute a letter next week, in which he will demand that all mayors end, within 30 days, the employment of all African immigrants, or else they will be fined.

Speaking in an interview on Channel 2 News, Yishai said, “Any local authority that will employ infiltrators - we will act directly against the head of that local authority. Let them employ Israelis instead. Infiltrators belong in the same country from which they came.”

At the same time, Yishai condemned the conduct of some Knesset members, particularly during Wednesday evening’s rally in south Tel Aviv, saying, “The fight against infiltration would have been much better managed without the unnecessary fervor of politicians in recent days.”

Earlier on Thursday, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu rebuked those MKs who took part in the rally, saying, “I want to make it clear that there is no place for the statements or actions that we saw last night. I say this both to public officials as well as to the residents of southern Tel Aviv, whose pain I understand.”

On Wednesday, more than 1,000 people calling for immigration laws to be enforced demonstrated at the corner of Irgun and Haganah in the southern Tel Aviv neighborhood of Hatikva.

During the rally, MK Danny Danon – who chairs the Knesset committee tasked with preventing illegal immigration to Israel – declared to demonstrators, "The state of Israel is at war with an enemy state that has formed within Israel and has its capital in southern Tel Aviv!"

MK Miri Regev told those in attendance that “we will not allow” illegal immigration to “spread like a cancer in our society.”

After the rally some protesters smashed windows, lit garbage cans on fire, and damaged a car that had three illegal aliens in it. No one was hurt in the incident. On Thursday police arrested 12 people on suspicion of attacking the vehicle, and running riot.

Netanyahu also vowed on Thursday to begin enforcing Israel’s immigration laws and deporting illegal aliens “soon.”

"The problem of the illegal aliens must be solved and we will solve it," Netanyahu said. "We will complete construction of the fence within a few months and we will soon begin repatriating illegal aliens back to their countries of origin."

Like Netanyahu, Knesset speaker Reuven Rivlin called on lawmakers to "guard their words" and avoid statements on emotionally charged social issues that could inflame passions.

Journalist turned politician Yair Lapid, who chairs the Yesh Atid party, also addressed the issue of his Facebook page on Thursday, saying, “I support the detention and deportation of illegal infiltrators, completing the border fence and preventing their entry, and I think that the human rights organizations need to think first about the rights of our local residents..

Lapid, added, however, “When I see a pogrom in the State of Israel, led by loud agitators such as MKs Danon, Regev and Ben-Ari, I wonder where these people have the audacity to call themselves Jews? Regev, Danon and Ben-Ari, along with the group that hit infiltrators on the streets of Tel Aviv, do not understand Jewish ethics, the Jewish collective memory, or the meaning of Jewish existence.”

What was that about Zionism and Racism?

23 May 2012

Picketing Israels Fascist Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman in Hendon Last Night

 In the Belly of the Beast with Mad, Brainwashed, Zionist Crazies

Last night I heeded the call put out in the previous 24 hours to join the picket of Israel’s Fascist Foreign Minister, Avigdor Lieberman at the Pillar Hotel in Hendon.  I got there about 6.30 to find there was a largeish Zionist counter-demonstration of mainly religious Zionist and Likud supporters, with the odd member/supporter of the Jewish Nazi Kach Party and Community Security Trust present.  Bushes and Police separated them from about 60-70 supporters of the Palestinians who, as the night wore on were outnumbered by about 3-1.

A hearty congratulation to all those, like Michael Shanahan and others who turned out.  When I knew it was in Hendon I knew it would be one of the more difficult protests and so it proved.    In fact it reminded me of the time that we were outnumbered by a similar margin in a demonstration against the National Front in Uckfield in the 1980’s.  Except that yesterday the atmosphere of threatened violence and attempts at intimidation were much greater.  These Zionists have such a lot in common with their EDL and BNP/NF friends.

It is to the credit of everyone present that there was such a vigorous protest, especially at such short notice.  I was approached, as was one other person, by a crazed rabbi who asked if I was Jewish and then if I’d had a Brit Millah (circumcision) to which I replied yes.  Apparently this was not good enough for the hairy bigot!  The counter-demonstrators, waving their Israeli and union flags were just about the most brainwashed kids there were.  At one point they started shouting ‘fascists off our streets’.  This from people who were supporting Avigdor Lieberman, the fascist foreign minister of Israel who only recently greeted the pro-Nazi Lithuanian Foreign Minister! http://www.azvsas.blogspot.co.uk/2012/05/israel-welcomes-lithuanias-anti-semitic.html

At one point the Zionists sang ‘God Save the Queen’ and then started shouting at me as to why I hadn’t joined in.  I shouted back ‘because I’m a Republican’ to which they responded ‘have some respect for the country you live in’ – as if I was a stranger in Britain.  But then even the limited democracy of Britain passes them by.  But that of course is precisely the view of the Zionists.  Jews are strangers in another people’s land.

We saw a few of the Zionist luminaries, if that is the right word, including Jonathan Hoffman and Richard Millett.  I shouted myself hoarse as per usual, asking them where were their EDL friends today.  But of course there were plenty of Jewish fascists there so they didn’t need them.

It also has to be said that but for the Police, who were clearly being alienated by these rich, Zionist kids, then there would have clearly been blood on the streets from these lovers of peace who were shouting that they wanted peace whilst we wanted terror.  And then they went on to shout that there was no such thing as Palestinians, so its difficult to know who they intended to make peace with.  Or maybe they meant piece – as in pieces of other peoples’ lands.

PSC Executive I’m pleased to say were out in force – Ben and Sara and a new member whose name I forget!  And Jews 4 Boycotting Israeli Goods was there in force, as was Neturei Karta who were a particular object of hatred for the Zionists.  Indeed I would estimate that at least 20-25% of the counter-demonstration was Jewish, demonstrating again that Zionists may be in a majority but they no longer have a monopoly when it comes to speaking on behalf of Jewish people.

Towards the end, because we decided to stay till 8 pm, someone said how crazy it would be to hold a march here.  In fact that is exactly what we did.  We marched out of the area and surprisingly, given the Zionist strength, people in cars started honking us in support and there were quite a lot of sympathetic black youth around who clearly didn’t like the well-dressed Zionist thugs who parroted about racism when that was what they were defending.

Below I included a few reactions from people on the demonstration.

Tony Greenstein
I've put some photos up on the Palestine...
22 May 22:10
I've put some photos up on the Palestine Solidarity Campaign Facebook page too. It was a great turnout - thanks to everyone who came! There was a lot of racist abuse thrown at those defending Palestinian rights, but we had a great demo and made a strong presence!

Tonight was crazy!!! Zionist, young and old...
22 May 22:06
Tonight was crazy!!! Zionist, young and old were crazy angry, intent on causing harm! Thank god for the police, although Zionist should never have been allowed to be so close! Across the street was not safe!

22 May 22:04
The JDL and Kach supported the fascists. A JDL Kahanist flag was brought among the fascists, but they weren't keen to be exposed as associated with the Terrorist Organization Kach, which is listed among the "Foreign Terrorist Organizations" even by the USA - see at:

I have to say that bringing Union Jack flags...
23 May 10:31
I have to say that bringing Union Jack flags to a pro-Palestine demonstration, especially of the ilk of yesterday, was an astoundingly ill-thought plan. There may be some interesting narrative going on behind the scenes surrounding reclaiming the flag, but as it stands now, within the context of Palestine and protests, EDL springs to mind, as well as the Balfour Declaration! If there is a strong movement, and a very public one at that, in which we reclaim the flag, then yesterday's decision would have made sense. As it stands, it came across as extremely insensitive and very confusing.

21 May 2012

They Use to Call it a Pogrom

Yizhar - A Judeo-Nazi settlement overlooking Nablus and home to the Od Yosef Chai Yeshiva

 The shocking video footage below, taken by Btselem, shows Israeli settlers attacking a Palestinian village and being protected by Israeli soldiers.  One person is shown to have been wounded in the head, but of course there are no arrests of the settlers.
The Star of David daubed, like the Swastika of old, on a Mosque

The training of armed, illegal settlers (Photo courtesy of IMEMC)
When Jews were attacked by non-Jews in Europe in a similar fashion they called it a pogrom.  That is the best description of what occurred and it takes place with the active support of the Israeli Occupation Forces and the government controlling them.

Video: As soldiers guard them, Israeli settlers attack Palestinian village, shooting one

Crosspost from Electronic Intifada

Submitted by Ali Abunimah on Mon, 05/21/2012 - 02:43
Video taken by Palestinians and posted on YouTube by the Israeli group B’Tselem shows Israeli settlers attacking Palestinians with stones, live fire and setting fire to fields as Israeli occupation forces guard the settlers.

One Palestinian, Fathi al-Asayreh, 24, was shot in the head in the settler attack.  The settler assault occured on 19 May in the village of Asira al-Qibliya near Nablus in the occupied West Bank and the settlers came from Yitzhar, an Israeli colony built to the east of the village on land stolen from the villagers in 1983.

Masked, hooded settlers attack village

A Hebrew-language text from B’Tselem accompanying the three video clips says that the Yitzhar settlers, some masked and hooded, approached the village from the settlement and began hurling rocks and setting fires. One of the settlers, video shows, appears to be carrying an army-issue “Tavor” assault rifle, suggesting, according to B’Tselem, that he was a soldier on leave from the Israeli occupation forces.

Soldiers protect settlers as settlers attack

Young men from the village began throwing stones back at the settlers. Within a short time, Israeli occupation soldiers showed up at the scene, but instead of doing anything to halt the settler assault, the soldiers formed a line to protect the settlers who continued firing at Palestinians.

Settlers can be seen aiming and firing weapons at Palestinians, including a handgun and M16 rifles.
Gunfire from the settlers injured villager Fathi al-Asayreh in the head. He is in stable condition at Rafidiyeh Hospital in Nablus, according to B’Tselem. About five other Palestinains were injured by rocks, B’Tselem said.

The attack on Asira al-Qibliya comes amid a sharp increase in settler attacks on Palestinians which are almost never investigated or punished.

A recent EU report, citing UN figures, found that in 2011 there were 411 settler attacks resulting in Palestinian casualties and property damage compared to 266 attacks in 2010, an increase of more than 50%. Compared to 132 attacks in 2009, the number has more than tripled.
In 2011, UN OCHA recorded 70 attacks by Yizhar settlers, “the largest figure recorded from a single settlement” that year.

B’Tselem said it asked the occupation authorities to investigate the incident, however such a request appears to stand little chance of being taken seriously.

The EU report noted that, “92% of the 600 cases related to settler violence monitored by Israeli NGO Yesh Din between 2005 and April 2010 were closed by Israeli authorities without resolution.”

Video: Yitzhar settlers fire at villagers in Asira al-Qibliya

by Chris Beckett
29 April 2012 | International Solidarity Movement, West Bank

Urif is a Palestinian town in the Nablus Governorate of the northern occupied West Bank, located thirteen kilometres South of Nablus. The town has a population of just under 3000 inhabitants and is overlooked by the illegal Israeli colony of Yitzhar. Last week on Sunday, April 22, Urif’s boys school was attacked by mask-wearing settlers supported by four Israeli Occupation Force (IOF) soldiers who used tear-gas, sound bombs, and live ammunition against unarmed Palestinian children.

The training of armed, illegal settlers - Click here for more images (Photo courtesy of IMEMC)
The settlers were led by the head of security for the Yitzhar colony, a man suspected in the murder of a resident of Urif in 2004, a murder that nobody has yet been charged with. He continues to lead brutal assaults against the civilian population of six Palestinian towns in the lands surrounding Yitzhar: Burin, Huwara, Madma, Assria Al-Kalibya, Ein Nabous, and Urif.

The attack began when the Yitzhar head of security and a number of masked settlers approached the school from an overlooking hill. “The children were sitting their mock exams,” said Arif, a member of the local popular committee, “the settlers used foul language and began throwing stones at the windows of the school.”

The settlers were soon joined by four uniformed IOF soldiers who did nothing to stop the abuse and stones hurled towards the school.

“When the army came they were supposed to stop the settlers coming to the school, in fact the opposite happened, there was chaos,” said Arif. A number of Palestinian youth approached the armed Israeli settlers and soldiers on the hill, using stones to resist the attack. The IOF soldiers then threw tear gas canisters down towards them and the school. One canister landed on the roof where a member of the Israeli human rights group B’tselem, Adil Safadi, was filming the attack.
Following the attack teachers from the school collected sixty tear gas canisters, a number of sound grenades, and at least thirty rounds of live ammunition fired directly over their heads.
In the video of the incident wherein International Solidarity Movement (ISM) volunteers are shown, the screams of the children and the loud report of an assault rifle being fired in fully automatic mode can clearly be heard. At one point an IOF soldier took aim with his M16 directly at a Palestinian youth out of camera shot. The sustained assault lasted for around an hour before the settlers decided to leave with their IOF minders in tow.
Whilst some children hid in their classrooms during the attack under the watchful eye of their teachers, many rushed to their homes and were exposed to large amounts of tear-gas and required medical attention. The children of Urif’s boys school, aged between 13 and 18, have been subjected to this kind of brutality on a regular basis since the founding of the school which sits on the outskirts of the village and is thus vulnerable to these kind of attacks. Many of the older kids that attend the school were in the process of studying for their year final examinations which take place in early May.
“You can’t imagine the loss we have suffered as a result of this settlement,” says Arif,  “we would like to live in peace and prosperity, but that is something we cannot gain. The settlers are very aggressive, there is no word in the dictionary to describe them.”
This is not the first time the settlers, supported by the military, have attacked the school. Roughly one year ago they attempted and failed to burn it down. ISM was shown pictures depicting the charred remains of one classroom that was severely damaged during the attack.

Incursions from Yitzhar into Urif and Surrounding Villages

Arif and members of Urif municipality informed ISM of the following.
The illegal colony of Yitzhar was founded in 1984. It was not until the beginning of 2000 that it began to aggressively expand into the surrounding Palestinian lands. Yitzhar illegally annexed vast swaths of land and barred access to the Palestinian farmers, shepherds, and villagers that have lived and worked the land for countless generations.

The village of Urif is a mere 1500 meters away from the Israeli colony, and since 2000, over 2200 dunams have been stolen by the nearby settlement. In addition, four thousand olive trees cultivated by the village have been uprooted or burnt by settlers in the past four years.

The villagers of Urif have no access to running water, instead they rely on a small number of ancient wells. Two years ago, members of the village were dismayed to find tear gas canisters had been dropped into one of the wells by unknown settlers, poisoning the water supply.

Any attempt to expand infrastructure in the village is also met with settler attacks. ISM volunteers were shown the remains of a house that had been under construction before it was attacked and completely dismantled.

“Late at night they launch attacks on the residents in this area,” said Arif, pointing to the rubble strewn skeleton of the destroyed house. A tractor and a number of cars belonging to residents of the village had also been destroyed in a series of recent arson attacks.

Settlers have shot through the windows of a number of the homes. Graffiti reading ‘revenge’ in Hebrew was scrawled across one residents house. The widespread attacks of agricultural land has lead to a vast “wasteland” between the outskirts of Urif and Yitzhar. Hundreds of goats, sheep, and a few horses have been stolen.

This is not to mention the violence towards the villagers themselves. Arif reports that hundreds of villagers have been injured since 2000, with as many as 40 serious injuries (many of which were gunshot wounds) and one murder.

The combined effects of this systematic assault on Urif residents’ way of life, economy, and civil society is akin to a form of ethnic cleansing. One of the most stark indicators of the impact of the measures taken against the village of Urif by Yitzhar settlement is that unemployment is as high as 40%. Many people simply cannot survive under these conditions and are thus forced to abandon the village of their birth, leaving behind their friends, family, and identity.

Chris Beckett is a volunteer with International Solidarity Movement (name has been changed).