Posts Tagged ‘Labour & Palestine’

Labour & Palestine March in London in May

April 6, 2022

Here’s another email I got yesterday, this time from Labour & Palestine, who are planning a march in London on the 14th of May. This is bound to annoy ‘100 per cent Zionist’ Starmer, who is determined to purge the party of anyone criticising Israel on spurious and mendacious accusations of anti-Semitism. Which is possibly all the more reason to attend. The email runs

National March for Palestine – Labour & trade union bloc. 14 May, 12 Noon, Portland Place, London.

RSVP, share & invite here – retweet here to spread the word

Hello David

Now, with ever more settlements being built, 74 years after the catastrophe of the Nakba when over 750,000 Palestinians were driven from their land and homes, we need to speak up for a free Palestine.

In line with Labour Party Conference and TUC Congress policy, on May 14 we will be on the streets calling for real action and sanctions from the international community and UK Government against Israel’s continuing illegal occupation and human rights abuses in breach of international law.

March to call for an end to Israel’s oppression and to assert the right of the Palestinian people to live in freedom with justice and equality. Join us on the Labour and trade union bloc – called by Labour & Palestine and supported by a broad range of trade unions – bring along your CLP & union banners and loudly say Free Palestine!

Best wishes,
The Labour & Palestine Team.

PS: Thanks to over 500 people who joined our recent Labour Women Speak up for Palestine event – you can read Beth Winter MP’s speech here and Kim Johnson MP’s speech here.’

This is another event that I won’t be able to attend, but I’m pasting this up for everyone who is interested and can.

Statement by Labour & Palestine on Amnesty International Report Condemning Israeli Apartheid

February 3, 2022

A few days ago Amnesty International released a report stating what anti-racist and pro-Palestinian activists had known for a long time: that Israel was an apartheid state that oppressed and persecuted its indigenous Arab population. I got the impression that it’s upset Israel and its mouthpieces over here, because Israel has been furiously denying that for decades. It’s the real reason Jeremy Corbyn and his genuinely anti-racist supporters were smeared as anti-Semites. They weren’t, and four-fifths of those smeared are decent, self-respecting Jews. But smearing their critics as Jew-haters is just about the only way the Israel lobby can defend the indefensible. I got this email yesterday from Labour & Palestine welcoming the report.

Spread the word – major Amnesty International report: Israel’s apartheid against Palestinians: a cruel system of domination & a crime against humanity

Read the report & AI press release here // share our FB status here // retweet here

Amnesty International have this week released a report arguing that “Israeli authorities must be held accountable for committing the crime of apartheid against Palestinians.”

The comprehensive report, Israel’s Apartheid against Palestinians: Cruel System of Domination and Crime against Humanity, sets out how “massive seizures of Palestinian land and property, unlawful killings, forcible transfer, drastic movement restrictions, and the denial of nationality and citizenship to Palestinians are all components of a system which amounts to apartheid under international law,” adding that “this system is maintained by violations which Amnesty International found to constitute apartheid as a crime against humanity, as defined in the Rome Statute and Apartheid Convention.”

In response to the report, Hugh Lanning of Labour & Palestine said, “This is a very welcome report from Amnesty reinforcing the growing number of organisations and bodies recognising that Israel is guilty of the crime of Apartheid.

It is time for the UN to investigate officially and the international community to recognise the reality the Palestinians face – not because of history or religion, but because the Israeli state chooses to operate a racist and discriminatory system in the land it controls and occupies between the Mediterranean Sea and the River Jordan.

End the occupation, give Palestinians back their stolen land.”

The report reinforces the importance of the motion in solidarity with Palestine passed at Labour Conference last year and why we must continue to speak up for Palestine.

  • You can read the report & AI press release here plus share our FB status here & retweet here
  • Please reply to this email if you’d like us to speak on the report at your CLP or other meeting.

I am very pleased that Amnesty International has published this report and hope that it leads to justice and the restoration of the Palestinian people’s land and dignity. But I doubt that it will, because I think the reaction of right-wing politicians across the West will be instead either to dismiss the report or decry it as anti-Semitic. This includes Keir Starmer, the Thatcherite nonentity who now leads the Labour party, who has declared himself to be ‘100 per cent Zionist’. There are many Zionists, who nevertheless despise Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians. But Starmer and the rest of the Blairites in Labour aren’t among them.

Petition from Labour & Palestine Calling for Increasing Support for Palestinians

September 4, 2021

Yesterday I got this email from Labour & Palestine inviting people to sign a statement calling on the Labour party to build on its motions in support of Palestine and its people. This has acquired a new urgency through Israel’s flagrant breaches of international law, such as the clearance of Palestinian areas for the construction of Jewish settlements.

“Today we have launched the important statement below, with the support of numerous MPs and trade unions, on why 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 passed by the Party’s annual conferences in 2018 and 2019.

Please take 30 seconds to show your support in the run up to Labour Conference 2021 by adding your name here, sharing here and retweeting here.

Best wishes,

Hugh Lanning, Labour & Palestine.


STATEMENT: Labour Must #SpeakupforPalestine

“As 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.

Earlier this year, the international community and labour movement widely condemned Israel’s militarised violence against the Palestinian people, including the attacking of the Al Aqsa mosque, the forced displacements from Sheikh Jarrah and the deadly assault on Gaza.

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.

Major reports by Human Rights Watch and the Israeli human rights group B’Tselem have added weight to the TUC’s warning that Israel taking these steps would represent ‘another significant step’ towards the UN Crime of Apartheid and strengthen the Palestinian call for the ICC to investigate.

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 passed by the Party’s annual conferences in 2018 and 2019.

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.”

  • Add your name here / Share here / Retweet here & spread the word

I’ve signed the statement because Israel’s treatment of its indigenous Arab population has been based on their ethnic cleansing from the very start. Any form of this has to be opposed, whether it comes from European Fascist regimes persecuting Jews, Gypsies and Slavs, China and its genocide against the Uighurs, or in this case, by Israel. I’ve no doubt that this may well be used as evidence by the ultra-Zionist witch-hunters that I’m an evil anti-Semite. I am not, I have nothing but contempt for real anti-Semitism and Nazis. I understand from Tony Greenstein, a Jewish anti-Fascist, anti-Zionist activist who has long been involved with the Palestine Solidarity Campaign, that at least in the latter organisation real anti-Semites are very definitely not eligible for membership. I don’t doubt that the same is true of Labour & Palestine. I note that one of the groups cited in the above message is the Israeli human rights group, B’Tselem. They, like JVL in the Labour Party, and a number of other Israeli human rights organisations, such as the courageous Breaking the Silence, are ‘the wrong kind of Jews’. B’tselem, Breaking the Silence and other, similar organisations were denounced by Netanyahu as anti-Jewish, enemies of the state or some other ultra-nationalist nonsense. I also understand that the pro-Palestinian organisations aren’t demanding the destruction of the state of Israel. What they went is the abolition of Israeli apartheid, so that Palestinians can live as de facto, de jure equals with the Israelis in their own state.

If you also feel strongly about this issue and aren’t afraid of being smeared and purged by Starmer and his inquisitors, please feel free to sign it.

Palestinian Attacks – Israel’s Retaliations Are Always Massively Disproportionate

May 12, 2021

Mike’s written an excellent piece over at Vox Political on the current escalating clashes between Palestinians and Israelis at al-Aqsa Mosque. The clashes began with protests after Friday prayers last week against the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians from a district of Jerusalem in order to make way for Israeli settlers. Mike’s piece includes a tweet showing a very entitled Israeli settler who makes it clear he believes he has every right to evict a Palestinian family from their home and have it instead. The Israeli police have shot people with rubber bullets and tear gas inside the mosque. This is horrendous sacrilege. It is the Islam’s third holiest shrine, and as a holy place it should be immune from violence. The Palestinians have launched rocket attacks, which have been met with even further violence and repression by the Israelis.

In an earlier piece about these clashes, Mike challenged Israel’s zealous defenders to justify the country’s actions. They have been unable to do so, except to point to the Palestinian attacks. As Mike says, they miss the point that he doesn’t approve of those either.

But it also needs to be said that Israel’s response to Palestinian violence is never proportionate. It is always massively excessive. The Israeli historian and pro-Palestinian activist Ilan Pappe has made this point in his book, Ten Myths About Israel. He specifically talks about Operation Cast Lead, launched by the man I’ve heard one Jewish academic call ‘that bastard Netanyahu’ in response to attacks from Gaza. He also discusses other incidents when the Israelis have contrived to provoke violence from the Palestinians so that they could respond with even greater force. This is all part of the decades-long campaign to grind down and expel the Palestinians from eretz Israel.

This ethnic cleansing is opposed by many sincerely liberal Jews and Israelis. The Israeli human rights organisation, B’Tselem has been very active denouncing it and educating people about Israel’s oppression of the indigenous Arab population. There is also the veterans’ group, Breaking the Silence, of former servicemen speaking out about the atrocities they committed and witnessed as part of the IDF. These good people are hated by Netanyahu and his supporters. There have been rants demanding that any Israeli, who assists the Palestinians should be stripped of their vote. Ilan Pappe was forced out of his post at an Israeli university and his home because of his determination to expose what was happening.

And now apparently Boris Johnson is following the scumbag American right in wishing to pass laws to ban the Boycott, Divest and Sanction campaign as ‘anti-Semitic’. No, it’s really not. BDS does not call for the boycott of Jewish goods, nor even that of goods and businesses located in Israel. It only calls for a boycott of Israeli goods and businesses located in the Occupied Territories, on land that rightfully belongs to the Palestinians. It has the support of many self-respecting, Torah-observant and secular Jews, who are smeared and reviled by Netanyahu’s supporters as self-hating anti-Semites. And as Mike has also pointed out, Jewry and the state of Israel are certainly not synonymous, whatever laws Netanyahu passes to say so. There are ‘True Torah’, ultra-Orthodox Jews who object to the state of Israel as a blasphemy, because in their theology Israel can only be restored by divine power through the Messiah. And there are other Jews, who strongly believe that Netanyahu’s actions against the Palestinians are a form of Fascism. One Israeli chemist and philosopher coined the term ‘Judeonazism to describe it. For them, Jews should always take the side of the oppressed, never the oppressor.

I had an email from Labour & Palestine stating that a demonstration has been organised for this Saturday. The email runs:

THIS SATURDAY – March to the Israeli Embassy, 12 noon, Marble Arch
#SaveSheikhJarrah #FreePalestine


GET INVOLVED: RSVP & share the demo here – check local events here


Hello,

We are writing to urge you to join the above London demonstration and local actions this Saturday taking place under the vital slogans  #SaveSheikhJarrah #FreePalestine – as well as going yourself, please tell friends and try and get your local Labour Party and other banners along!

In order to support these protests, we have also rescheduled our workshop for our supporters only on building support for Palestine in your CLP for 6.30pm-8.00pm on Thursday May 27. This event will include a briefing on current developments in Palestine and presentation of our model/Conference motion on Palestine, which we are currently updating to include the latest developments. You can RSVP here.

I am not intending to go, but I have put news of it up in case anyone else is interested.

Israel’s actions are deplorable and Boris’ attempts to try to ban BDS is another attack on British freedom of belief.