كلمة حرّة Your Say (unless you tell the truth about antisemitism or Gaza)

Kalima Horra means “Your Say”.  It is the flagship talk show of Al Mayadeen TV – a pan-Arab station. It is hosted by George Galloway.

Three weeks ago (16 March – a Shabbat of course) there was a programme about ‘Antisemitism’. It featured Tony Greenstein and Ken Livingstone and Adam Garry. Galloway referred to the “racist apartheid state of Israel“. Livingstone said : “Anyone who criticises the Israel government’s policies towards the Palestinians is denounced as antisemitic” (Ironically (I do understand English Irony) this lie is called the Livingstone Formulation). The recording is here.

At 24:07 a vox pop woman gives us the hoary old antisemitic chestnut “Palestinians are Semites too” (the word ‘antisemitism’ has nothing to do with ‘Semites’ – which is why it should be spelled without a hyphen). After her a man says “It’s not antisemitic to criticise Israel”.   Right.  As IHRA says …..

At 27.40 watch Greenstein on ‘Jewish Power’ … Responding to Galloway’s question as to why “conflation of anti-Zionism and antisemitism” has been “so successful”, he said “I have no doubt that when Corbyn was seen as likely to come to power I have no doubt that the centres of power – whether in the US, Britain or Israel – took fright”.

At 33:55 a woman – who previously had spoken up in support of the IHRA definition of antisemitism – quietly walks out in disgust, as Galloway says that “Patagonia could have become Israel“. If you are reading this Madam – well done!

At 34.22 Greenstein distorts Zionist history … “What Zionism did was co-opt the religious symbols and the Bible to a colonisatory project. Zionism was never a religious formation. The people who opposed Zionism most at the beginning were the orthodox Jews.”  He thus negates a whole tradition of religious Zionist Visionaries, such as Moses Hess and Rabbi Kook.

At 41:04 watch Livingstone again use the eponymous Livingstone Formulation: “If you criticise the policies of the Israeli government you can be accused of being antisemitic

At  46.49 Greenstein uses a fake quote supposedly from Herzl (“the antisemites will be our friends and our allies”).

At 48:06 Greenstein libels the actress Maureen Lipman CBE (who is Jewish and a magnificent defender of Israel) : “She’s fiercely anti-Palestinian” Then we get another false quote from Greenstein: Primo Levi never saidthe Palestinians are the Jews of Israel”. And then come repulsive antisemitic Jew/Nazi comparisons from Greenstein.

Followed by Livingstone (49.30) mendaciously and sanctimoniously denying antisemitism and then enabling it! (“My worry is that this obsession in the media is encouraging genuine antisemites to do antisemitic things”).

Ahead of the show on 16 March, I and several other Jews accepted the invitation to be in the audience (at a studio in Wembley) – but we then received an exclusion email.

On 13 April (another Shabbat – of course) the show is discussing Gaza and people are invited to join the audience.  You’d think they’d want a balanced audience wouldn’t you. Think again…………….

(Please contact me if you have received a similar  email, whether or not you are willing to be quoted)

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