Archive for the ‘Israel’ Category

Gracchus Babeuf and the Calls for a Welfare State in 18th Century France

January 21, 2023

Gracchus Babeuf was a French revolutionary, who tried to overthrow the Directory and establish a communist state during the French Revolution as the leader of the ‘Conspiracy of Equals’. He’s one of the founders of the European socialist and communist traditions. I’ve been reading Ian Birchall’s book on him and his legacy, The Spectre of Babeuf (Haymarket Books 2016), and it’s fascinating. Birchall discusses the influences on Babeuf, which included Morelly, the author of the Code de la Nature, which also advocated a communist system with a centrally planned economy, Nicolas Collignon, who wrote an 8 page pamphlet demanding the same, and Jean-Jacques Rousseau. In Collignon’s ideal state, the citizens were to be provided with free food and clothing, high quality housing, schools and healthcare. Like the Tories, he also believed in competition, so doctors would be graded according to their performance. Those that cured the most would be consequently paid more and get promotion, while those who cured the least would be struck off. Even before he devised his own communist plans, he was already discussing the need for collective farms. What he meant by this is not collective farms in the soviet sense, but farms run cooperatively by their workers rather than a single farmer with employees. And he was also in favour of creating a welfare state. In a book he authored on correct taxation, he wrote

‘That a national fund for the subsistence of the poor should be established. That doctors, apothecaries and surgeons should be psif wages out of public funds so that they can administer assistance free of charge. That a system of national education be established out of which all citizens may take advantage. That magistrates be also paid wages out of public revenue, so that justice can be done free of charge.’ (p. 29).

Birchall also attacks the view promoted by Talmon in his The Origins of Totalitarian Democracy that Babeuf was an authoritarian who prefigured soviet tyranny. Talmon was an Israeli Conservative writing at the beginning of the Cold War. But Babeuf himself, although a revolutionary, was also keen to preserve and expand democracy. One of his suggestions was that there should be a set of elected officials charged with making sure that delegates to the national assembly were representing their constituents properly. If they weren’t, the people had the right to recall them.

Regarding industrial organisation, he believed that the citizens in each commune should be divided into classes, each class representing a different trade. The members of these classes would appoint governors, who would set the work and carry out the instructions of the municipal government. It’s very much a command economy, and utopian in that money would be abolished.

I can’t say I find Babeuf’s full-blown communist ideas attractive, for the reason I believe in a mixed a economy and the right of people to do what they wish outside of interference from either the authorities or other people. And I really don’t see how such a state could last long without a money economy. Some Russians looked forward to the establishment of such an economy at the beginning of the Russian Revolution when the economy began to break down and trading went back to barter in some areas until the Bolsheviks restored the economy. And there is clearly conflict between violent revolution and democracy. But I respect his calls for a welfare state. He was also an advocate of equality for women and an opponent of imperialism, which he felt corrupted extra-European peoples with European vices. This view is clearly based on the 17th century ideas of the Noble Savage, in which primitive peoples are seen as better and more morally advanced than civilised westerners.

Demands for a welfare state are as old as socialism itself. We cannot allow the British welfare state and NHS to be destroyed by the Tories and Blairite Labour under Starmer.

Is Starmer Preparing to Privatise the Health Service Further?

January 15, 2023

It really does look like that. I caught a bit of the interview with him on TV this morning, and I can’t say I was impressed. He was asked about his broken promises, and we got the usual guff about how, after losing the election under Corbyn, he was ready to do anything to make the Labour party electable again, plus the usual nonsense about dealing with anti-Semitism. In fact, while the press and media managed to make Corbyn personally hated by a large section of the British electorate, his policies were massively popular. It’s just that the neoliberals in what is now the political and media establishment fear and hate them. As for the anti-Semitism, this another load of nonsense. Corbyn was never an anti-Semite, as the respected historian of British Jewry, Geoffrey Alderman said. It was all about supporting Israel against the Palestinians as well as a convenient smear tactic by the right once the accusations of communism failed to stick. And the BBC was one of the media outlets pushing the smears through Panorama, as a recent documentary has found. Unsurprisingly, the media have conspicuously failed to cover that.

But it’s what Starmer said about the health service I found particularly disturbing. He talked about using private healthcare to a greater extent to clear the backlog. Well, that was an argument I believe the Tories used for the greater involvement of private healthcare before the pandemic. I think this police started in New Zealand. But then he went on to talk about how the health service needed reform, and that this could include a greater role for private healthcare. He then went to waffle on about bureaucracy and the usual talking points you hear from Conservatives discussing the state of the NHS. The interviewer asked him about reforming it to a social insurance system, and issues about the founding principles of the NHS that medicine should be universal and free at the point of delivery.

Part of the problem is that private enterprise, rather than reducing costs and bureaucracy, has actually increased it, though no-one of the right actually wants to admit this. It’s because of privatisation that administration costs have soared to or near American levels, which are at 45 per cent. Despite this, it looks like Starmer is, like the Tories before him, going to privatise the health service even further, starting with using the backlog as a pretext for the further involvement of private healthcare companies.

As for Starmer generally, I think he is personally unprincipled and opportunistic, who is prepared to lie and break promises just to get himself in No. 10. I would rather have him than the Tories, but I do fear for the country and the health service under his government.

Gladstone’s Defence of Jewish Emancipation

January 13, 2023

Among the various texts and speeches in Alan Bullock’s and Maurice Shock’s The Liberal Tradition from Fox to Keynes is one of Gladstone’s advocating Jewish emancipation. Traditionally Jews, along with Roman Catholics and Protestant Dissenters had been legally barred from public politics and offices through the Test and Corporation Acts. During the 19th century these legal disabilities were removed so that the members of these religious groups were able to vote and hold public offices, serving as MPs and local councillors. When it came to the Jews, Gladstone made a brilliant speech urging their emancipation and rebutting the various prejudices against them. These were that they hated Christians, had no love for the country and were money-grubbing. Gladstone attacked these by saying that if Jews hated Christians, it was because Christians had persecuted them. If they had no love for their country, it was because their country still only half accepted them. And they were only money-grubbing because banking had been the only profession they had been allowed to pursue. But the Jews were nevertheless a great people, and he compared their glorious past, when they possessed the splendid temple in Jerusalem and merchants fleets plying the seas, when at the time the British were still savages living in mud huts.

Gladstone is something of a paradoxical figure. He started as a right-wing Anglican before moving left and becoming one of the leading voices for the non-conformist conscience. He also wanted the disestablishment of the Anglican church and Home Rule for Ireland. If he’d been able to get it, this may well have prevented so much violence and bitterness this past century. He believed strongly in political freedom and the Liberals were critics of imperialism, but it was during Gladstone’s tenure as prime minister that the British empire expanded the most.

I felt I should put up a piece about him and his defence of the Jewish people and their freedom, because last year following Black Lives Matter and the current debate over slavery there were a couple of attempts to remove memorials to him. The students at one of the Liverpudlian universities decided to rename one of their halls of residence named after him because his family had got their wealth from slavery. The new hall was instead named after a Black communist woman schoolteacher. I’m sure she was a fine and inspiring lady, but she’s not in the same league as Gladstone. In London, Sadiq Khan’s decision to rename public amenities according to the present ethnic composition of their areas lead to an activist coming into a number of schools in Black and Asian majority areas to urge that the local park, named after Gladstone, should be renamed. Two of the suggestions were ‘BAME Park’ and that it should be renamed after Diane Abbott. Again, as one of Britain’s first Black MPs, she deserves to be memorialised, but again, she isn’t a political titan like Gladstone.

People are not responsible for the actions of their ancestors, and however much we despise the source of his wealth, Gladstone was not only one of Britain’s greatest prime ministers, but one of the 19th century architects of British liberty and democratic institutions. People need to know far more about him, and the other great politicians, rather than having him erased from public memory because of present controversies over the source of their money. Because if people like Gladstone are removed from public memory, so too is their achievement in helping to build a free Britain in which people can express their hatred of slavery and tyranny.

Sketches of Three Victims of the Labour Purges – Jackie Walker, Tony Greenstein and Naomi Wimborne-Idrissi

January 9, 2023

I was saddened and disgusted to hear that the Labour party had purged Naomi Wimborne-Idrissi just before Christmas. But not, alas, surprised. Naomi was the communications officer for Jewish Voice for Labour and a deeply committed defender of the Palestinians against the real oppression of the Israeli state. Jewish Voice for Labour strongly supported both them and the party’s former leader, Jeremy Corbyn. And unlike its right-wing rivals, the misnamed Jewish Labour Movement, its members had to be both Jewish and members of the Labour party, although gentiles could become associate members. This made it and her absolutely intolerable to the witch hunters, who particularly hate and loathe socialist Jews who criticise Israel. Such people contradict the carefully crafted image that Zionism is intrinsic to Jewish identity and that the state of Israel is unanimously supported by all Jews, everywhere, who are automatically citizens whether they’ve ever been there or ever wanted to go. And so she, like so many other great people, both Jews and gentiles, was smeared as an anti-Semite and purged. She knew about it just before her 70th birthday. I think she may also have been purged round about the time of Hanukkah, a Jewish festival that takes place just before Christmas. This all seems particularly cruel and shows, to me, just how vindictive the Blairites conducting the witch hunt are. She now joins the hundreds of people who have been unjustly smeared and purged on such trumped up charges.

A year or so ago I did some sketches of her, and two other victims of the purges, Jackie Walker and Tony Greenstein, who were expelled from the party for the same reasons: they were Jewish critics of Israel. Here are the sketches. They’re not brilliant, but I hope you like them.

Jackie Walker and Tony Greenstein

Naomi Wimborne-Idrissi

Colorized Film of the Jaffa Gate, Jerusalem in 1897

January 3, 2023

This comes from the History Upscaled channel on YouTube, and shows the original footage and then a colorized version of footage of Jerusalem and its people at the Jaffa Gate, shot by the Lumiere brothers. It’s very short, just over a minute long, but it’s a fascinating glimpse of Jerusalem in the final years of the 19th century before the establishment of the state of Israel and the ethnic cleansing of the Palestinians.

Netanyahu’s Far Right Allies Call for Gays and Trans People to Be Denied Healthcare

December 28, 2022

I wonder how Keir Starmer, who is ‘100 per cent Zionist’ and determined to push through legislation banning conversion therapy for gay and transgender peeps is going to react to this. The Rev. Simon Sideways is a right-wing YouTuber. I think he might be a trucker, as his videos are frequently of him, sat behind a wheel, driving somewhere and giving his opinions on illegal immigration and woke ideology. He describes himself as a White activist, but as far as I know, he’s not an anti-Semite. In the video below he attacks calls from two members of the Knesset, the Israeli parliament, for industry and medicine to be able to deny their services to members of the LGBT community for religious reasons. These are members of the coalition partners of Netanyahu’s Likud, the Religious Nationalist Party. In other words, far right religious fanatics. The type of people one Israeli intellectual called ‘Judaeonazis’. He starts by asking whether such a policy would be acceptable in Britain if it came from a similar ruling coalition between extreme secular nationalists on one hand and Christian fundamentalists on the other. Clearly it wouldn’t. He’s also perplexed at how a people, who have suffered such terrible persecution over the centuries, such as the Holocaust, could inflict similar persecution on other marginalised groups. As it stands, the pair demanding the right to discriminate against gays state that, in the case of medicine, this should only be done if there are other people willing to provide the treatment that religious individuals and companies are withholding. Yeah, I’m sceptical about this. This is how it starts, but if people give into this, before long they’ll be a blanket permission for everyone to withhold their services from gays. He also says it doesn’t seem very godly, given that God made everyone.

Okay, the prohibition against male homosexuality is found in the Bible. It’s amongst the various laws in Leviticus. There is no similar legislation against lesbianism, though the Talmud refers to it as ‘the practices of the Egyptians’. However, there are about 600+ laws in the Old Testament, and hundreds more in the Oral Law preserved by the rabbis in the Talmud. From what I understand, liberal interpreters of the Law don’t consider it any more important than some of the others, and I don’t doubt that some Jews probably ignore it altogether as something more fitting to another time. Much homosexuality in the ancient world was paedophilia, and so I think some have interpreted this verse as a ban on that, rather than a ban on consensual sex between adult men. As for how a persecuted nation can behave like this to another persecuted group, Jews are human beings and human being are capable of terrible persecution, regardless of their nationality, race or religion. Just look at what the Israeli state has done and is doing to the Palestinians. Of course, there are liberal Jews, who are going to be as outraged about this as Sideways, because they believe that liberal values are at the heart of Judaism. For them, so I understand, to be a Jew is always to side with the oppressed, never the oppressor.

Sideways also wonders how the UN will react, noting that they have previously passed 50 or so resolutions against Israel for breaches of international law. I don’t know, but from previous occasions, they’ll probably ignore them and accuse the UN of being anti-Semitic.

This might, however, damage some of their public relations image. Critics of Israel have talked about ‘pinkwashing’ by the Israeli state. This is using it’s liberal attitude to homosexuality, shown in such events as the Jerusalem Mardi Gras, to present the country as a beacon of liberalism and tolerance against Palestinian, Arab, Muslim homophobia. A while ago the Beeb showed a series about gay people in Britain. One of the men shown was a young chap with a Jewish boyfriend. He was very much impressed with this apparent Israeli tolerance to the point he was considering converting to Judaism. If the Israeli coalition passes this wretched legislation, that gay-friendly image will take a hit.

My guess it won’t get passed and I’ll be surprised if this story is widely reported. If such legislation was passed, then it should be a problem for Starmer. How would he be able to justify such absolute support for a persecutory state while at the same time opportunistically declaring his support for some of those people likely to suffer under such laws?

Or would he and the Israeli nationalists who support him go back to the old tactic of smearing anyone who makes such a criticism an anti-Semite?

‘Women with Wings’ – The SF Novel about Interbreeding with Aliens to Save Humanity from Racial Degeneration

December 21, 2022

As I wrote in my last piece, I’ve been reading a number of collections of SF stories published by the British Library. These collections are on various themes – other planets, life in space, the threat of the machines taking over – and the short stories are mixed with introductions describing the history of the depiction of that planet or theme in SF. The introduction to the story about Venus notes that before the modern space probes revealed that it was hell planet of scorching heat, crushing pressure and sulphuric acid rain, Venus was often thought of as an Edenic world with peaceful, angelic inhabitants. But I found myself particularly interested in the brief description of the plot of a book published in 1930 by Leslie F. Stone. In his ‘Women with Wings’ the Venusians are humanoids descended from flying fish. Both they and humanity are declining from racial degeneration, which the two peoples successfully combat by interbreeding.

I find this fascinating, as much SF is about the threat of alien invasion, including the rape and forced interbreeding with human women, and occasionally men. You think of fifties B-movies like Mars Needs Women or the lurid covers of the mid-20th century SF pulp magazines with square-jawed earthmen attempting to stop evil Martians or Moon people or whatever carrying off the heroine. Then there’s the plot of Hammer’s notorious Devil Girl from Mars, in which a Martian woman lands in Scotland in order to kidnap a man and bring him back as breeding stock to the Red Planet. This kind of cosmic rape is part of the contemporary UFO abduction myth, in which evil grey aliens from Zeta Reticuli are abducting humans and either physically raping them or harvesting their sperm and eggs in order to create a hybrid race. In some forms of the myth, it’s because the greys are racially degenerate and need to incorporate human genetic material in order to continue. Alien abduction and hybridisation were an integral element in the original X-Files, in which FBI agents Mulder and Scully were pitched against a secret organisation, the Syndicate, who were at the centre of a global conspiracy to create a race of alien hybrids who would be the only survivors of an alien takeover.

At the time Stone was writing, many European and American intellectuals feared real racial degeneration. This was at the hearts of the eugenics movement, that held that the biologically unfit would outbreed healthy people and so the human race would inevitably decline. One element of these fears was the threat of racial interbreeding with the non-White races judged inferior in the contemporary racial hierarchy. Hence the legislation passed by various American states to prevent the congenitally disabled having children and to limit immigration and prevent intermarriage with racial inferiors. These not only included non-Whites, but also Whites from southern Europe. These fears were also expressed in the SF and fantasy of the period, such as in H.P. Lovecraft. Several of Lovecraft’s stories are about racial degenerates preying on normal humanity and forced interbreeding from outside. In ‘The Shadow Over Innsmouth’, an entire fishing community has been taken over by a murderous cult and its people racially mixed through generations of interbreeding with a race of fish people. Stone stands out against these fears through presenting racial mixture with aliens as improving the biological stock of both races. He’s a curious exception to the trend, and I wonder if there were other writers with similar ideas.

These racial fears were the basis for the horrendous legislation and political moves against people of different race and the disabled that culminated in Nazism and the Holocaust. It’d be interesting to know a bit more about Stone and whether he had the same attitude to terrestrial peoples of different colours intermarrying and having children. It might be that such anti-racist attitudes were just confined to that fiction and involved the idea of people breeding with an equal or superior race. But nevertheless, it is remarkable that someone wrote a story that had a positive view of it at all, especially as racist regimes like apartheid South Africa, banned literature with similar themes and messages long into the 20th century. And in Israel there are still Jewish groups devoted to stopping Israelis forming liaisons and marrying Palestinians.

Graham Hancock – A Crank, Possibly, But Definitely No Racist

December 9, 2022

My discipline, archaeology, has been massively going after Graham Hancock this week. Hancock’s ah, um,, ‘maverick thinker’, I suppose you’d say, who’s been presenting a series on Netflix arguing that thousands of years ago there was a highly advanced civilisation that perished in a cataclysm, but passed on its secrets to other ancient civilisations around the world. This has understandably annoyed archaeologists and a number have put up videos, some of them lengthy and quite detailed, disproving him. Hancock’s been promoting this idea for some time now. Going back two decades and more, he had a series on Channel 4 with the title ‘Water World’ or something like it, also arguing that there was a global advanced civilisation, whose monuments have been covered up by a flood, as recorded in the Bible and other ancient religions. Now I’m sure that Hancock is wrong, and the criticisms of his dodgy history and archaeology are right. But I take exception to one of the other accusations levelled at him, which is that he is racist.

This accusation is partly based on his false ascription of the achievements of indigenous cultures around the world to this putative prehistoric civilisation. It denies those people the credit for their achievements. But the accusation is also that it’s similar to the ideas of some bonkers White supremacist groups, who are using Hancock’s ideas to promote themselves. One archaeologist posted a video saying that Hancock should have disavowed the use of his ideas by these fascists. It also criticised him for being friends with Joe Rogan and Jordan Peterson. There are fair criticisms to be made of both of these men. Peterson’s an arch-conservative and anti-feminist, but hardly a Nazi. Rogan was pushing anti-vax nonsense and is an advocate for some mind-expanding drugs. A few years ago people were accusing him of being a ‘gateway to the Alt-Right’. Possibly, but he also talks to people from the left, who are otherwise denied a platform by the lamestream media. Journalists like Abbie Martin, who talked about Israeli propaganda against the Palestinians and how she found, when she visited the beleaguered Arab nation, that the reality was nothing like the picture painted by the Israeli state. He’s also talked to biologists and journalists exposing the lies of the trans ideology. This is not Alt-Right, no matter what groups like Mermaids, Stonewall, Antifa and the rest say. The people criticising the gender ideology tend to be radical feminists, many from the socialist left. Part of their opposition against it is that it reduces masculinity and femininity to traditional, stereotypical sex roles. One of the feminist vloggers interviewed one of the leading activists against the trans ideology, who was furious that people like her were being presented as right-wing. Another feminist activist criticised Matt Walsh for misrepresenting feminists as uniformly in favour of trans ideology, and then criticising them for it. Rogan gives a voice to people outside the mainstream. Sometimes it’s rubbish, and sometimes it’s immensely valuable. He has also interviewed a number of Black celebs, so again, not a Nazi.

The White supremacist ideas being referred to seem to me to be the Traditionalist ideology of Giulio Evola. Evola was an Italian Fascist and occultist, who was a major ideological influence on the scumbuckets behind the Bologna railway bombing in the 1970s. A fascist group bombed the station, killing and maiming over a hundred people. Evola believed that there was a strongly hierarchical, ‘Aryan’ civilisation in Hyperborea in the arctic, which was responsible for all the subsequent cultural achievements of the civilisations around the world. This is twaddle. But Hancock’s ideas are also similar to those of others, which don’t come from people in the fascist fringe. A couple of years ago I picked up an old book, Colony Earth, which had been published in the 1970s. This claimed that Earth may have been an extraterrestrial colony, whose advanced civilisation was destroyed in a nuclear war. The pyramids may have been fall-out shelters, as were the megalithic tumuli in Britain. It’s an interesting read, but certainly wrong. I think Charles Berlitz, who started the Bermuda Triangle myth, also believed in this, supporting it in one of his books with artefacts from Aztec tombs that look like aircraft. Berlitz is someone else, who I’m fairly certain has absolutely no connection to fascism whatsoever.

And I don’t believe Hancock is either.

When he was travelling the world on his Channel 4 series he was accompanied by his wife, who is Sri Lankan. Now, White supremacists do not, as a rule, marry dark-skinned people from outside Europe. If they do, they’re angrily denounced as ‘race traitors’. In one edition of this earlier series, Hancock reported on the mysterious ruins of ancient city found off the coast of the Bay of Bengal. He was shown talking respectfully to an Indian gent, who told him how such findings tie in with Hindu ideas of the antiquity of civilisation and ancient Indian legends of flooded cities. Again, this isn’t quite behaviour you’d expect from a genuine White supremacist. He also travelled to South and Central America, where he proposed the old theory that the Mayans, Aztecs and other ancient Amerindian civilisations must have learned how to build their pyramids from someone else. I think this was once again ancient Egypt. But who brought that knowledge to the New World? Black Africans. He pointed to an Olmec bas relief of a warrior’s head, and declared its features to be ‘proudly African’. If this is racism, then its Afrocentrism rather than White supremacy. As for the ancient race behind these monuments, Hancock doesn’t say what colour they are. In this, he breaks with some of his predecessors, who say they must have been White because the legends of numerous Amerindian peoples state that vital parts of their culture were brought to them by White gods. Hancock is therefore less racialised in what he says than his predecessors.

I disagree profoundly with Hancock’s ideas, but he has a right to say them like everyone else. And if it piques people interest in these ancient cultures so that they want to find out what they were really like, that’s all to the good. But I do think it’s profoundly wrong to accuse him of racism. That just further cheapens the word and weakens it as a weapon against the real thing.

Email Calling for the Labour Party to Speak Up for Palestine

December 2, 2022

I got this email from Labour and Palestine asking people to sign their call to the Labour party to speak up for the Palestinians against their continued oppression and dispossession by the Israeli state, in stark contravention of international law. The email runs

Labour Must Speak up for Palestine – add your name!

UPDATED FOR #PALESTINEDAY 2022: Sign here // Share here // Read our article here // Retweet here

“To be an internationalist and democratic socialist party, it is the responsibility of the Labour Party to speak up for Palestine and stand in solidarity with the Palestinian people and their fundamental rights, including to self-determination.

Recent actions by the Israeli Government have illustrated the continuing nature of Israel’s illegal occupation and the denial of the rights of Palestinian peoples with the use of militarised violence and forced displacements. The attacks on Gaza in August 2022 killed 44 Palestinians, including 15 children, and were described by the UN Special rapporteur as an act contrary to international law. The Israeli army’s killing of the Palestinian journalist Shireen Abu Akleh; the attacks on the Al Aqsa mosque and the outlawing of 7 NGOs who spoke up for Palestinian rights being just some examples.

The seriousness of the situation facing the people of Palestine is confirmed by the fact the International Criminal Court is holding an inquiry into abuses committed in the occupied Palestinian Territories since 2014.

The continuing de facto annexation of Palestinian land by accelerated settlement building alongside statements of Israel’s continuing intention to proceed with annexation, show it is clearer than ever that the Israeli State is intent on eliminating any prospects of Palestinian self-determination, including by trying to annex Jerusalem as its sole capital.

Major reports by Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and the Israeli human rights group B’Tselem have concluded that Israel is practising the crime of apartheid as defined by the UN.

Labour must build on – not step back from – its commitments to immediate recognition of the state of Palestine and an end to the blockade, occupation and settlements as outlined in the 2017 and 2019 manifestos, and in the motions overwhelmingly passed by the Party’s annual conferences in 2018, 2019 and 2021, the last  of which stated “that the Labour Party must stand on the right side of history and abide by these resolutions in its policy, communications and political strategy.”

We must support “effective measures” including sanctions, as called for by Palestinian civil society, against actions by the Israeli state that are illegal according to international law. This must include action to ensure that Israel stops the building of settlements, reverses any annexation, ends the occupation of the West Bank, ceases the blockade of Gaza, brings down the Wall and respects the right of refugees to return to their homes under international law.

We oppose measures designed to stop civil society using non-violent actions, including ethical investment policies, to try to ensure Israel complies with international law.”

* Sign here // Share here // Read our article here // Retweet here

I’ve signed it, as it is clearly a matter of simply justice to defend the victims of persecution regardless of the state doing it. I fear that it will probably do little good, as Starmer is ‘100 per cent Zionist’ and backs the Israeli state to the hilt, even employing a former Israeli spook to hunt down the emails and social media posts of people he can smear as anti-Semitic. But if you are a member of the Labour party or a Labour supporter and feel the same way about it I do, please consider signing this as well.

Netanyahu Appoints Far Right Maniac Ben Gvir as ‘Kingmaker’. But Is the King Edward I?

November 4, 2022

Mark Pattie, one of the many great commenters on this blog, left a remark earlier today noting that Benjamin Netanyahu has appointed Ben Gvir as ‘kingmaker’. Netanyahu is the new Israeli president, and Itamar Be Gvir is a raging anti-Palestinian racist. He’s so extreme that in a recent piece about the Israeli elections the Beeb described him as ‘far right’. He is, as one of his demands is for the expulsion of ‘disloyal Arabs’. ‘Far right’ is strong language, especially as the I.H.R.A. definition of anti-Semitism says that it may be anti-Semitic to compare Jews to Nazis. But the comparison is certainly there, and valid, as the mighty Tony Greenstein has been showing for a very long time. Israeli policy towards the Palestinians is comparable to the Nazi persecution of the Jews before the initiation of the ‘Final Solution’ in 1942. You can also compare it to the Nazi occupation of Poland, in which a tract of land extending into Ukraine and Russia was cleared of its Slavic inhabitants ready for German colonisation.

But let’s stay with the ‘kingmaker’ epithet, shall we? If we’re talking about kings, I supposed the English king most like the demented Ben Gvir would be Edward I, the kind who expelled the Jews from England and who was the centre of a British Fascist cult, English Mystery, in the 1920s and 30s.

And it seems the Israel lobby is getting ready to make insinuations of anti-Semitism yet again against left-wing politicians. Ben Shapiro, one of the leaders of the right-wing American organisation, Turning Point, has posted a video this evening complaining that while the outgoing Israeli president, Yair Lapid, has congratulated Netanyahu on his election victory, Biden hasn’t done so. Well, if I was a politico, I wouldn’t want to congratulate the leader of an administration that had a monstrous bigot like Ben Gvir in it. But the attitude also reminds me of various incidents where the Israelis flung accusations of anti-Semitism against Barack Obama. Obama gave them the Iron Dome missile defence system. He also gave them aid, but because they didn’t get the amount they demanded, the Israeli government through a fit and screamed ‘anti-Semitism’.

This did not impress the very Jewish Sam Seder, head honcho of the left-wing ‘Majority Report’ news and commentary YouTube channel. Seder stated very clearly that if he was the president and they did that to him, he’d cut the aid by a third and ask them if they still wanted to complain about anti-Semitism. Unfortunately, no western leader would dare to do this because of the power of the accusation. Which is unfortunate, as now the Middle East is confronted by a real racist maniac in power with Netanyahu.