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The nasty slur campaign against Jeremy Corbyn has just plumbed new depths with a hark-back to 1968 and the Rivers of Blood speech by Enoch Powell. It seems to have been prompted by a remark Corbyn made in 2013 that British Zionists had two problems:
“One is they don’t want to study history and, secondly, having lived in this country for a very long time, probably all their lives, they don’t understand English irony.”
In anti-Semitism terms that’s a flogging offence, even when it might be true. The former chief rabbi, Lord Jonathan Sacks, immediately took umbrage saying that Corbyn’s criticism of British Zionists was the most offensive statement made by a senior politician since Enoch Powell’s Rivers of Blood speech. Sacks told the New Statesman:
“It was divisive, hateful and, like Powell’s speech, it undermines the existence of an entire group of British citizens by depicting them as essentially alien.”
He said Corbyn had implied “Jews are not fully British” and that he was “using the language of classic pre-war European anti-Semitism”, adding that Corbyn was an anti-Semite who “defiles our politics and demeans the country we love”. He had “given support to racists, terrorists and dealers of hate who want to kill Jews and remove Israel from the map”.
Sacks’s words could equally be taken to mean those who align themselves with Israeli hate and the wish to kill Palestinians and wipe Palestine from the map – which they have already done quite literally. And if Corbyn defiles our politics so does the Israel lobby. But the irony must have escaped him.
Just how righteous is the moralising Lord Sacks? In a House of Lords debate in 2014 on the Middle East in general and the question of formal recognition of Palestine by the UK in particular, the former chief rabbi got up and made a speech that was more like a pro-Israel rant. After a long winded spiel about the history of Israel and Jerusalem – from the Jewish angle of course – he went on to demonise Hamas and Hezbollah in the manner recommended by Israel’s hasbara handbook and all the more absurd when Israel’s hands are so unclean. Everyone knows that Hamas has agreed to a long-term truce with Israel provided it ends the illegal occupation, gets back behind its 1967 borders and accepts the refugees’ right of return – all as per UN resolutions and subject to a Palestinian referendum. And Hezbollah, as Sacks knows perfectly well, was formed to resist the Israeli occupation of Lebanon after the 1982 war.
Israel, said Sacks, is the place where his people were born almost 4,000 years ago. As an ardent promoter of the Jewish religion, the Jewish state and the idea that God gave Jews exclusive title to Jerusalem, he seemed oblivious to the irony of his speech, especially where he said:
Where does he get his information? Israel won’t define its boundaries, leaving them fluid for endless expansion, and does a first-class job of delegitimising itself by its defiance of international law and utter contempt for norms of human decency and obligations under the UN Charter and other agreements.
Distorting history and religion
Zionists distort the scriptures to claim Jerusalem is theirs by divine right, but it was already 2,000 years old and an established, fortified city when King David captured it. The Jews lost Jerusalem to the Babylonians, recaptured it, then lost it again to the Roman Empire in 63 BC. When they rebelled Hadrian threw them out in 135. Until the present illegal occupation the Jews had only controlled Jerusalem for some 500 years, small beer compared to the 1,277 years it was subsequently ruled by Muslims and the 2,000 years, or thereabouts, it originally belonged to the Canaanites.
Jerusalem was also a Christian city. The 4th century saw the building of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. The Persians came and went. Then, after the Islamic conquest in 690, two major shrines were constructed over the ruins of the earlier temples – the Dome of the Rock from which Muhammad is said to have ascended to Heaven, and the Al-Aqsa Mosque. The Crusaders retook Jerusalem in 1099 and the Temple Mount became the headquarters of the Knights Templar. In 1187 Saladin ended the Crusader Kingdom and restored the city to Islam while allowing Jews and Christians to remain if they wished.
As the saying goes, “None has claim. All have claim!”
Nowhere in his speech did Lord Sacks address the main question of British recognition of Palestinian statehood. Nowhere did he recommend the jackboot of oppression be immediately lifted and the Palestinians granted their human rights and their freedom. That would surely have been the Christian position and, I imagine, the true Jewish one.
It is what the rabbi failed to say on this important occasion that makes me wonder whether he’s an instrument of God or just another preacher of Israeli hasbara. I read somewhere that Lord Sacks is of Polish/Lithuanian extraction. Most Palestinians can demonstrate ancestral ties to the ancient Holy Land. Can he?
“Jeremy Corbyn moved the rock and the anti-Semites crawled out”
Corbyn is also in trouble over a remark he made in 2010 at a meeting of the Palestine Solidarity Campaign suggesting that MPs who took part in a parliamentary debate on the Middle East had their comments prepared for them by the Israeli ambassador. I’d say that was fair comment, although the scriptwriters were more likely to have been Mark Regev’s propaganda team in Tel Aviv. Regev, a propaganda expert from the dark side, is now Israel’s ambassador in London. Oh, the irony (again).
And a few days ago we heard that Jews are preparing to quit Britain because they fear Jeremy Corbyn taking power, according to former chairman of the Conservative Party Lord Feldman. So says The Times.
Feldman wrote an open letter to Corbyn telling him that Jewish people were making contingency plans to emigrate because Labour had become a hotbed of anti-Jewish feeling.
“Many Jewish people in the United Kingdom are seriously contemplating their future here in the event of you becoming prime minister. Quietly, discreetly and extremely reluctantly, they are making contingency plans.”
One of these is Mark Lewis, a prominent solicitor and a former director of lawfare firm UK Lawyers for Israel, who is emigrating to Israel with his partner, Mandy Blumenthal. It is believed she is National Director of Likud-Herut UK, an affiliate of the Zionist Federation and whose website is full of preposterous ideas such as:
“We believe that terms like ‘illegal occupation’ should never go unchallenged…” and “Such criticism as we may have [of Israel] should never be expressed publicly…”
Lewis, who describes himself as an “unapologetic Zionist”, said: “Jeremy Corbyn moved the rock and the anti-Semites crawled out from underneath.” And he told the Evening Standard: “I don’t feel welcome in this country anymore.” So he’s off to that hotbed of racism and apartheid, Israel.
Being unwelcome is not a happy feeling. I know this from my trips to Israel, what with their rudeness, threatening behaviour, intrusive searches, hostile questioning and unforgivably vile treatment of our Palestinian friends. It’s not as if we want to be in Israel – we are forced to divert there on account of Israel’s illegal military occupation. And when we eventually reach Palestine we have to put up with the presence of arrogant Israeli gunslingers strutting the streets, setting up hundreds of roadblocks, using obstructive tactics with brutish behaviour, creating endless queues and interfering with Palestinian life at every level.
And if we try traveling to Palestine direct, like the humanitarian aid boats Al-Awda and Freedom last month, we get violently and unlawfully assaulted on the high seas, beaten up, thrown in a stinking Israeli jail and have our belongings and money stolen by the Israeli military desperate to maintain their illegal blockade of Gaza.
So, if Messrs Feldman, Lewis and Blumenthal feel more comfortable with those criminals they’d better join them.
In answer to the babble put out by Zio-propagandists, church leaders in the Holy Land issued their 2006 Jerusalem Declaration saying:
This still stands. And as the declaration also points out, “discriminative actions [by the occupation] are turning Palestine into impoverished ghettos surrounded by exclusive Israeli settlements. The establishment of the illegal settlements and the construction of the Separation Wall on confiscated Palestinian land undermines the viability of a Palestinian state as well as peace and security in the entire region.”
That comes from genuine churchmen working in the front line against armed Zio-thugs whose vicious day-to-day persecution of the Christian and Muslim communities in the Holy Land makes a nonsense of accusations of anti-Semitism in the UK.
I think we can deduce from all this that Zionism is a menace. Nothing has changed for the better; it has got steadily worse.
“We want our Jerusalem back, and our state”
In 2010 Father Manuel Musallam, a gritty Catholic priest with long experience of Israel’s cruel and illegal occupation, told members of the Irish government:
Archbishop Theodosius Hanna (Greek Orthodox Church) told them:
Corbyn should remind his tormentors of all this and take no lectures from those who support Zionism and adore the racist state it spawned.