Newly arrived from the US, Sara Hirschhorn find British Jews (by which she means Orthodox Jewry) too submissive and too sectarian. She thinks that their anxiety to conform and to ostracise the ‘wrong’ Jews contributes to antisemitism.
Jonathan Cook examines a legal property dispute – settlers build a synagogue on Palestinian land. The court rules in favour of the Palestinians – at which point the Israelis charge them an unpayable amount of property tax. Bureaucracy is again the winner.
Apartheid has become the preferred term for some critics of Israel as the best label for Israeli/Palestinian relations. Irene Calis disagrees. Whereas white South Africans needed, and still need, black people as cheap labour, Zionist containment of Palestinians is merely an unfortunate by-product of creating a Jews-only state.
These are the words of Israel’s Labour Party leader, Isaac Herzog; he only criticises Israel’s security agenda when it’s not comprehensive enough. The stabbing of 11 people by a ‘lone wolf’ Palestinian seems to be what BiBi and Lieberman have been looking for – a place on the victims’ table from where they can accuse every Palestinian leader. And only a week ago Bibi was urging all French Jews to move to Israel as the only safe haven.
The Greek Orthodox church has controlled Christian churches in Palestine since the 1530s. However, the Patriarchate has been absorbed into the Israeli establishment, seen to be serving their interests rather than those of their Arab congregations. But the PNA fears that if the whole church is Arabized, Israel will feel free to seize the church’s substantial land-holdings. So are Greeks more ‘occupiers’ or protectors of Arab land? Ahmad Melhem reports.
‘Using human shields, attacking medical teams and hospitals, shooting at civilians waving white flags. A new report by Physicians for Human Rights authored by a team of international medical experts documents shocking testimonies of victims and presents new evidence from Operation Protective Edge in Gaza.’
The direct approaches to the UN and ICC by the PNA follow the failed efforts of John Kerry (which he blamed on Israel) to restart negotiations. Now with Congress dominated by Republicans, the US has returned to blocking and threatening Palestinians.
PM Netanyahu has decided that the best response to the decision by the ICC to open a ‘preliminary inquiry’ into Israel is to use all means to delegitimise the court to boost his standing before the election (also post below). Any next step by the ICC will make either the USA and allies, or Arab states angry.
The outrage being organised by Netanyahu and expressed by Republicans, especially, in Congress at the effrontery of the PNA’s application to the ICC seems quite disproportionate. An unsympathetic comment from Douglas Bloomfield.
Sami Al Jaar was shot dead by police during a raid on Rahat; Sami Ziadna was either shot dead or died of a heart attack when police turned up at Al Jaar’s funeral, despite requests for them to stay away. Israeli Palestinians have begun a general strike. Reports from +972 (photographic) and The National.
The Swedish government recognised the State of Palestine on October 30th, 2014 – the first (and only) western government to do so despite the votes by their national parliaments. Foreign minister Margot Wallstrom – who recently criticised Israeli aggression, settlements and humiliation of Palestinians – was due to visit Israel this week. The visit has been cancelled, Scheduling difficulties were cited by an Israeli spokesman made it clear she would not be welcome.
Holocaust Memorial Day is on January 27th because this is the day the Red army liberated Auschwitz-Birkenau. The theme of this year’s HMD is, ironically, Memory. There is a widesspread forgetting of the 3.3 million Soviet POWs who died in the Nazi camps – the second largest number after Jews, and of the role of the Red Army in liberating Auschwitz and providing the first care and medical treatment. The programme of Memory events was launched last November by Stephen Fry (JfJfP signatory). ‘liars’. UN resolutions and the Stockholm declaration which day made clear that the day is also a declaration against all genocides, bigotry and racial prejudice.
In modern times, Jews are the favourite minority of the British government (getting extra money for security from successive Conservative Education Minister and Home Secretary. In earlier times, Jews’ questionable loyalty to states other than Israel and their insistence on separate education and living space primed the antisemitic charge.
Obviously the dominant issue this week, January 12-18, 2015 – though it’s little to do with justice for Palestinians – was the attack on shoppers at the Hyper Cache supermarket in Vincennes, Paris, in which four Jewish people were killed. As Islamist thugs were also the killers of 12 people at the Charlie Hebdo magazine, […]
We are sorry to be posting the obituary of Mike Marqusee, long-time signatory of JfJfP, even longer a socialist and a cricket lover since he settled in England. His political memoir, If I am not for myself: Journey of an Anti-Zionist Jew, has been widely praised, especially for his insight into those who are Progressive Except for Palestine.
Israel’s ambassadors have been warned by Israel’s foreign ministry that the future is bleak for Israel. Their secret report points to the votes by European parliaments – and that Europe is Israel’s biggest trading partner. Also, Bibi’s claim to lead the fight against Islamic terrorism, based on his fight against Palestinians, annoys many Europeans.
Yes, the state of Israel and its security forces are the greatest deniers of justice for Palestinians, constantly breaching the principles of due process and international law. But others withhold justice as well – such as the government who ignored their parliaments’ votes for Palestinian statehood and, notably, the PNA which has been trying to deny freedom of association to workers since 2012. Now a union is appealing against this decision.
The horror of violent 1930s-45 antisemitism is that many European states either took part or colluded in the extermination of Jews. The opposite is true now says Joel Braunold; the state guards Jewish schools and synagogues and governments praise their role in national societies. So why urge them to make aliyah to Israel? It is also absurd to pretend that Jews are the only victims of Islamist killers in Europe.
On the combination of the killings in France and release of two opinion polls on British antisemitism (1 reputable, 1 not) a forest of press coverage has grown. In riding the Charlie Hebdo bandwagon, there has been little serious effort to analyse this antisemitism, Which means Letters. Some of those published and unpublished.
Steve Chapman, Chicago Tribune on the ‘giant public-private network that has a stake in stoking these fears’ (of terrorist attack) The latest panic-monger is Rabbi Menachem Margolin, director of the little-known European Jewish Association, who says governments should allow proprietors of synagogues, kosher shops and Jewish property to arms themselves. JfJfP’s Deborah Maccoby, amongst others, condemns this over-reaction. Steve Chapman, Chicago Tribune