Palexpo #2: Israel Hatefest in London – Gideon Levy’s tide of Antisemitism

There is a video of Gideon Levy’s speech on Sunday 7 July in the session entitled ‘One State: The Future’ (also on the panel were Zwelivelile Mandela and Wadah Khanfer).

As UK Media Watch has observed, Levy’s infamous record of baseless claims includes falsifying a poll to suggest Israeli support for apartheid (for which he was forced to apologise) and parroting the ‘Zionism = Racism’ canard in declaring that “a Jewish state means a racist, nationalistic state, meant for Jews only.”

Levy’s PalExpo speech is sickening and revolting and contains antisemitism.

At -16.40 he declares (to applause!) that a One State solution is the only solution. One State would mean the end of Israel as a Jewish State. To desire this is antisemitic (IHRA: ‘Denying the Jewish people their right to self-determination’). It would also cost millions of lives because it would have to be imposed by force, the Jewish electorate of Israel would never agree to it, neither would many non-Jews).

At -14.08 he lies that no Israeli Prime Minister has wanted a ‘two state solution’. Palestinian leaders have rejected four offers of statehood including at Camp David over 95% of the territory they wanted. Most recently talks stalled following the rapprochement between the Palestinian Authority and Hamas.

At -12.50 he suggests freezing settlement building – without of course mentioning that Israel did this in November 2009, freezing new construction, in order to advance peace talks. It proved fruitless.

At -12.10 Levy asks why Israel thinks it has the right to demand that a future Palestinian State must be demilitarised. He sarcastically answers his own question: ‘On being the Chosen People? On being the victims of the Holocaust?‘ Both are deeply offensive and antisemitic.

At -7.52 he says “almost no Israeli considers Palestinians as equal human beings”. It’s an antisemitic lie (IHRA: ‘Making mendacious, dehumanizing, demonizing, or stereotypical allegations about Jews’).

At -6.45 he lies about One State, asserting that it can ‘very rapidly turn into reality.’ Truth is, it would require a bitter civil war with massive loss of life.

At -5.39 he calls Israel ‘an apartheid state’ to applause. This is antisemitic (IHRA: Making mendacious, dehumanizing, demonizing, or stereotypical allegations about Jews’).

At -4.11 he says “What is a Jewish State? I lived there 66 years, I didn’t get it yet.” This is a  lie. He knows perfectly well what makes Israel a Jewish State. The national language and the observation of Jewish holidays, for a start. Ask any Jewish immigrant from France or indeed from anywhere: they will not only tell you they feel at home, they will tell you they felt at home from the moment their flight landed at Ben-Gurion.

At -3.30 he says “I want to live in a just place, not in a Jewish place, not in a non-Jewish place”.  The inference that a Jewish State cannot be just is despicable.

At -2.07 he says “Those who speak about a 2 State Solution are the greatest supporters of the occupation”. This is rubbish. Yachad for example wants a 2SS. They are hardly supporters of a continued Israeli  security presence in Judea/Samaria!

Levy ends by suggesting that if the Israeli government refuses ‘one state’ then this is tantamount to admitting that Israel is an ‘apartheid state’.  Complete and utter rubbish.

It remains a mystery why Levy was admitted to the UK. And indeed why he should be let back into Israel.

Addendum

NGO Monitor on Palexpo

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Panorama: Is Labour Antisemitic?

For shouting at antisemites, we were prosecuted. Please help us meet our legal costs. Many thanks.

https://www.crowdjustice.com/case/defending-a-trumped-up-case-ai/

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Corbyn supporters (eg Owen Jones) have lined up to criticise the truncation of an email from Seamus Milne, saying that the truncation resulted in changing its meaning to the direct opposite of what Milne intended.

Are they right?

Here’s the complete sentence:
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Panorama allegedly only looked at the second half of this sentence, thus
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The full sentence suggests that Milne thought that some cases of alleged antisemitism were in reality merely ‘political disputes’.  The truncated version makes it clear that Milne’s comment was specifically applying to Jews: he says (wrongly in the case of Labour) that it is a rarity for Jews to also be antisemites (there have been numerous cases where Jewish JVL members have been guilty of antisemitism, see the JVL Watch blog).

The upshot of either formulation, though, is that Milne believed that too many cases of alleged antisemitism were being referred. The allegation that by truncating, Panorama changed the meaning of Milne’s email to the direct opposite, is nonsense.

Postscript

On Victoria Derbyshire this morning, Tareq Khanis a ‘British Palestinian’, suggested that Israel is guilty of ‘ethnic cleansing’. Derbyshire asked him about the Pete Willsman case. In response he quoted the Al Jazeera ‘investigation’. Understandably some others in the audience  jeered. He then turned around to Josh Garfield (who is Jewish and was in the Panorama programme ) and is heard to say (34.45) “One of your people was actually seen taking bribes.

Surely he must be disciplined for that!

Postscript 2

John Ware responds to the Corbots

Palexpo: Israel Hatefest in London

For shouting at antisemites, we were prosecuted. Please help us meet our legal costs. Many thanks.

https://www.crowdjustice.com/case/defending-a-trumped-up-case-ai/

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Palexpo took place at London Olympia last weekend, 6/7 July. The main organiser was Friends of Al Aqsa.

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David Collier has described the pernicious way that young visitors to the event were brainwashed to hate Israel by means of games such as ‘Apartheid wall: See how you interact with your family during a meal with the Apartheid wall cutting through the dinner table.

The event featured 42 hour-long conference sessions, all of which demonised Israel. Examples of titles: BDS; Prevent & Palestine: The Erosion of Activism through Counter-Terrorism; One State: The Future. Analysis of the speakers a few weeks before the event revealed that as many as 37 had a history of either reportedly antisemitic comments or Israel demonisations. In the former category were Osama Abu Irshaid, Hatem Bazian, Neve Gordon, Joseph Massad and Glynn Secker. A few speakers were added after the analysis was done. Rebecca Gould is a Professor at Bristol University. The university authorities failed to discipline her after she wrote an article suggesting that Jews profit from the Holocaust.

On the other hand the following speakers were removed, or removed themselves: Neve Gordon, Sarah Lasoye, Asad Rehman, Steven Saxby, Glynn Secker, Andy Slaughter MP. Possibly Slaughter and Saxby (a Labour candidate) pulled out because of the impending Panorama investigation of antisemitism on 10 July.

Particularly ludicrous was to fly Mandela’s grandson in from South Africa. He knows sweet FA about the Middle East but that didn’t stop him making constant inappropriate comparisons with South Africa under apartheid.

Videos of the five sessions on Saturday in the auditorium are available on the Palexpo website. I have been through the 7+ hours of recordings; here is what I found (bios of the speakers whose affiliations are not shown can be found here).

Jerusalem: Vanishing City

This session contained inflammatory lies about Israel’s treatment of Muslims and the Al Aqsa Mosque.

Laila Hassan (Women in Hebron): You will cry when you see how you can’t pray in your Mosque.  We need your help. We need people to support how we live under occupation. We don’t need help from your government. We know your government, they support the Israelis, the Jewish people.  When they found us they kicked us out. We are victims. The Israelis, they focus on Al Aqsa Mosque and Ibrahimi Mosque because they hate Muslims.  We never hated them because they are Jewish. They are fighting us because of our religion. They divided Al Aqsa. It’s two places, a synagogue and a Mosque.  The settlers go there every day.

Osama Abu Irshaid: Christians and Muslims are being discriminated against by Israel. Since 1967 Israel has failed miserably in guaranteeing the rights of the three religions. Everyone knows that Muslims are being banned from praying in their own Mosque. Christians are being banned from their churches. Israel is a combination of a traditional colonial enterprise and apartheid regime mixed with historical and religious narratives. Creating a false Zionist narrative is a deliberate attempt to deny the indigenous people of Palestine their rights and their own land. (Q+A) Since 1967 Israel has failed to prove that a single stone dates from Before the Roman Era or the Muslim Era. This is documented by the UN and the British. The Palestinians are being dehumanised. They were never offered real peace. No-one talks about the inhumane siege of Gaza. People were put on a diet; their calorie consumption was counted.

Hassun El Zafar (recently produced ‘My Name Is Rachel Corrie’ in Sheffield), Moderator: ISM was a neutral human rights organisation; it was disbanded by the Israelis.

Nation Law: Israeli Apartheid State

This session contained several falsehoods – like ‘the majority of European Jews are converts’ (!)

Joseph Massad: Jews have become a minority in Israel plus the territories gained in 1967. So the Nation State Law was needed to underpin Jewish minority rule. The majority of European Jews are converts. In 1967 Israel set up an academic enquiry to study how to expel more Palestinians. There are 65 laws which privilege Jews.

Zwelivelile Mandela:  Apartheid in Israel is the worst form of apartheid that we have ever witnessed.

Gaza: The Great Return March

In this session Ilan Pappe suggested that the mainstream media (MSM) is bribed not to mention Gaza

Ilan Pappe: The MSM never mentions Gaza but it mentions every detail of antisemitism in the Labour Party. Why does it never mention Gaza? Either it’s too timid, or it’s bought, or it’s ignorant. I think one day we will see a Palestinian leadership that talks of a One State Solution. The BBC must stop beinga  broadcaster on behalf of Israel and must begin to tell the truth.

Opening Session

This session saw a call for a One State solution – which would mean the end of Israel as we know it. It also saw FOA founder Ismail Patel slandering Israel.

Zwelivelile Mandela: We continue to call for a One State solution

Wadah Khanfer (former DG of Al Jazeera): The Jewish culture, the Islamic culture and Christian culture thrived in the Middle East

Ismail Patel (founder of Friends of Al-Aqsa): BDS is non-violent, a language Israel does not understand and therefore which it cannot counter. If BDS was antisemitic how can some Jewish people support it? Israel is being antisemitic by trying to deny them their right to speak out, it is denying their Jewishness. Israel and its supporters are weaponising the charge of antisemitism to continue with its colonialist and racist project.

Deal or Disaster of the Century

This session featured the falsehood that criticism of Israel is deemed antisemitic, together with other allegations that Jews misuse the charge of antisemitism. Only antisemites make these kinds of arguments.

Gideon Levy: We face a new stage in which criticising Israel becomes not only impossible but almost criminal. You dare to criticise Israel – you’re an antisemite. My friend Roger Waters is an antisemite? This man of conscience whose father was killed in WW2 as an ambulance driver in Italy? Corbyn can be a major change, if the miracle happens.

Joseph Massad: Israel wants to say that it has the right to kill Palestinians, to steal their land, to establish its state, because it is Jewish, in the name of Jews, and then at the same time it wants to make sure that no-one can criticise it, by claiming that if they criticise it, they are criticising its Jewishness.

In another session an Arab member of the Israeli Knesset,  Yousef Jabareen, called for a boycott of Israeli goods. Hopefully he will face disciplinary measures. It is entirely wrong – indeed treasonous – for an MK to travel abroad and attempt to do harm to their native country.

This event should never have been allowed to take place. It simply fuelled antisemitism. Requests to the Home Secretary to cancel it went unheeded; maybe this is due to the weakness of the government. Ironically at the same time as he failed to cancel the event or refuse entry to the antisemitic speakers from outside the UK, Sajid Javid was telling us how much he loves Israel and that ‘I’ve been determined to safeguard our Jewish communities from this creeping antisemitism which not only fuels hate crime, but also extremism and even terrorism.

UK Lawyers for Israel also contacted the owners of Olympia but the hatefest still went ahead. If there was an event as offensive to Muslims or Christians as this one is to Jews, it would not be allowed to happen. Yet again, Jews are seen as a pushover.  Let’s hope this Israel Hatefest aka Palexpo was the last. It certainly made a thumping loss. Attendance was sparse and the costs of hiring the venue plus travel and hotels for the speakers would have been well into five figures.

Postcript

Look what happened at the session entitled ‘Britain, Zionism and Jewish Resistance to Israel‘ on Saturday. Greenstein called Israel “Hitler’s bastard offspring”.  A Labour Councillor, Leah Levane, was on the Panel and there is no indication that she protested at this vile antisemitic slander.

 

The Metro’s Apology of an Apology

Many were appalled to see this letter in the London freesheet Metro on Friday 28 June.

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  1. The allegation that “every criticism of Israel is considered antisemitic” is nonsense and those who make it mark themselves out as antisemites. There is nothing wrong with criticising Israel as long as you don’t use antisemitic language eg comparing Israeli Jews with Nazis (see IHRA definition of antisemitism)
  2. “….the Jewish people’s hatred of Palestinians”. The “Jewish people” do not hate the Palestinians. To allege that they do is an antisemitic slur.
  3. The convention is that the name of the sender must appear at the bottom of a letter unless disclosure risks harm to the sender or their family. The name of the sender should have been printed.

The Board of Deputies complained and on 2 July the Metro published this apology of an apology:

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All it said was that the letter ‘wrongly accused Jewish people for being responsible for the action of the Israeli government’.  What? So it’s OK to say that the Israeli government ‘hates the Palestinians’? No it isn’t. It’s crass and a lie which displays zero knowledge of the Middle East.

Is it really beyond the wit of the Editor (Ted Young) to read and understand the IHRA definition of antisemitism?

Tom Bowden: Hero to Am Yehudi

The life of the non-Jew Tom Bowden marks him out as a hero to Am Yehudi, the Jewish People.

See here, here, here and here

His connection to Israel began during the Second World War when he fought in ferocious battles in British Mandate Palestine while serving in the Royal Scots Greys Cavalry regiment.

In 1941 he was wounded in a cavalry charge in Syria alongside Moshe Dayan, later Israel’s Chief of Staff and Defence Minister, who lost his eye in the battle. After recovering in 1944 he parachuted into Arnhem but was captured and sent to Bergen-Belsen after an SS officer discovered letters from his Jewish girlfriend. He was there for a month prior to the liberation. The experience of handling corpses prompted him to return to Palestine in 1948 to enlist to fight as a volunteer with the Machal under the name David Appel. Bowden was assigned to the IDF’s 7th Brigade and fought at Latrun and in Galilee.

In 1949, after the armistice, he was asked by Chaim Laskov, a founder of the Israel Defence Forces, to start a parachute school at Tel Nof base. Helped by his Jewish secretary, Eva Heilbronner, he wrote Israel’s first training manual, consulting rabbinical scholars for Hebrew translations of new technical terms. As commander and chief instructor of Israel’s first parachute regiment, Bowden brought army surplus parachutes from England and made four jumps ”before breakfast every day.”

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Bowden died on 10 June age 97. I attended his funeral in Norfolk on I July at St Andrew’s Church, South Lopham followed by the burial at Diss.

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The Israel Ambassador was present. The Church was full.

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The service was of course a sad occasion for Tom’s family but it was also a celebration of his rich life. After Israel he returned to Norfolk, becoming a pig farmer and then selling insurance for Hill Samuel. His sons David, Robert and Ken described their father’s amazing abilities with machinery which included restoring a Land Rover. Reverend Canon Tony Billett spoke about the importance of helping others, as Tom had done for Israel.

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Tom was buried at Diss.  A single plane (his plane) performed a flypast. diss 6

Wreaths were laid, including by the Israel Ambassador and a military attaché.
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Armed Forces Chaplain Rabbi Reuben Livingstone recited the Jewish Memorial Prayer.

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Tom Bowden – May he Rest In Peace – Never Forgotten

 

Postscript 1:

The day after the funeral Elana Overs emailed me. She’s the daughter of Stanley Medicks. He was in Machal too – a platoon commander in the 7th brigade in the War of Independence. There he met Derek (Tom) who became a lifelong friend.

Elana comments that there were 5,000 Volunteers from 59 countries in Machal. Another friend of her father was Gordon Levett, an RAF pilot who flew one of the Messerschmitts bought as war surplus in Czechoslovakia; they bombed the Egyptians when they were 10 miles outside Tel Aviv.

Both late Prime Ministers Yitzhak Rabin and Ben Gurion (z”l) knew that without these brave Volunteers, who brought their WW2 expertise, the War of Independence would not have been won. In 1993 Prime Minister Rabin (z”l) inaugurated the opening of the Machal Memorial that Stanley built (with the aid of the JNF) to the 123 men and women of Machal who paid the supreme sacrifice. It is just off the road from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem near Sha’ar Hagai. It was chosen to be near the “Burma Road” built at night by hand in 1948 to bring supplies from Tel Aviv to a besieged Jerusalem.

Elana says “My father loved Derek and always told me that the friendships fought in war are never forgotten. Although a very modest man, Derek would have been proud to have had so many friends, colleagues and dignitaries honour his amazing life.”

“A wonderful interview with Derek (Tom) was done fourteen months before he died:”

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=D0XDfGwGiHE

“He was an incredibly brave soldier, the like of whom we will not see again.”

I encourage all readers to watch this interview with Tom by Simon Barrett of Revelation TV

Postscript 2

Here’s the Eastern Daily Press report of the funeral. Apologies for not recognising Lord Dannatt (former Chief of the General Staff (head of the Army)).

And Jewish News

 

Abusive emails received ahead of Puma trial

I am publishing abusive emails received prior to the trial yesterday. Most were addressed to me, a few were to Harvey Garfield, another pro-Israel activist. Bruce Levy, an American, was an ever-present at the Ahava boycott. As was Michael Shanahan, a UK national. Tony Greenstein is well-known as an Israel hater. He has been expelled from Labour for abusive behaviour and suspended from the trade union Unison.  All three are anti-Israel obsessives as can be seen from the emails. Apologies for the poor readability of some of the emails – if you enlarge the font size on your screen, it’s easier.

12 March 2019

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More readable version of the 16 March email, above

Scoffie

You don’t have to go to Galloway’s shows. If you want to learn about antisemitism take a look at YOURSELF in the mirror and reflect on your past words and deeds, as EVERYTHING you’ve said and done goes against the tenets of Judaism. Anticipating your appearance at Westminster magistrates. Don’t forget to book your ride in Tesco Harv’s rickshaw. Look in the mirror Scoff and see the biggest antisemite. Bruce Levy.

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19 April
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20 May

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Puma Trial: You Can’t Shout Down Antisemites

Damon and I would like to thank all who have sent us messages of support, who were there in Court to support us and who contributed to our Defence Fund. We love you all. A special thank you to those close to us who have supported us in the runup to the trial.

For those who would still like to contribute, the link is here.

And yes – Lawfare Won’t Silence Us!

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Great honour to have 88-year old Harry Kaufman, Veteran of the 43s, in Court supporting us yesterday

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The assault charges were based on fictions.  Watfa claimed that at around 2.30 pm on 8 October I hit her on the right shoulder and then shouted “You Bitch“. It’s a lie. There’s no evidence apart from the statements of Watfa and Lstadt, the woman in the blue jacket in the video.

Both Damon and I were acquitted of the assault charges (they were dropped in fact, being based on lies).  And this wasn’t the only fiction (but I am precluded from saying more). How appalling that the Israel hating antisemites have no compunction in lying blatantly.

I was acquitted of the Public Order 4 charge (intent to cause immediate unlawful violence) – an absurd charge. I was advised on the day to plead guilty to the far less serious Public Order 5 charge (‘likely to cause harassment/alarm/distress’) which carries a small fine. Damon was charged with a Public Order 4a charge (‘causing harassment, alarm or distress’) and on the day, was advised to plead guilty.

There was zero recognition of the degree of antisemitism and demonisation of Israel that we were opposing:

– Watfa speech: “Apartheid” …. “Stolen land” … “From the river to the sea”

– Placard: ‘Kills one Palestinian child every 60 hours’

– Placard ‘Cages one Palestinian child every 12 hours’

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It’s high time the CPS and the Courts began to recognise antisemitism ……………The CPS has adopted IHRA, remember!

Also appallingly, the policeman on the case insisted that the case be tried as a racial and religious hatred case (Section 145, Criminal Justice Act).  In other words according to him we were there not because we found the antisemitic discourse of InMinds repugnant, but because we are Islamophobes.  What a disgrace:  the Court ignored it.

The message from this verdict is that neither pro-Israel advocates nor campaigners against antisemitism can trust the police or the CPS. It adds to the evidence from other recent cases: The CPS’s failure to prosecute Nazim Ali, who said at Al Quds in 2017 that Zionists were responsible for the Grenfell Inferno, and their initial failure to prosecute the antisemitic singer Alison Chabloz (they eventually took over the prosecution from the CAA).

If we cannot trust in justice, what’s the point?