Zionist or Jew at the House of Lords

The Jew, the Zionist and antisemitism at the House of Lords

Zionist or Jew at the House of LordsYesterday there was an event at the House of Lords, put together by the Palestine Return Centre (PRC). The evening was hosted by Jenny Tonge.

There were no tickets remaining, but I had to go. The PRC and I have history. It was at one of their events that Gerald Kaufman told tales of Jewish money and Israeli conspiracies. Jenny Tonge needs little introduction. I wanted in. A little back story, a tale or two spun along the way, and I had successfully gate-crashed a party at the Houses of Parliament.  Soon I was sitting in the front row of committee room 2A.

As it turned out Tonge was tame, but there was still much to shake me. I go to so many of these events and I am still trying to formulate a complete picture of what it is I am seeing. For example, there is more antisemitism in the air than there was 18 months ago. Much more. I see it on campus, I saw buckets of it at a recent event at Lichfield. I saw it last night at Westminster. A definite increase. But why?

There is no point being directed by anger, nor to lose yourself in the creation of an irrational inhuman enemy. These methods merely provide a lazy way out, a system of avoiding uncomfortable moments of self-reflection. Theirs is a line that can be drawn. Drawn between the civil war in 1948 and those who sit in the House of Lords today demanding an apology from the British government.  We can draw the line further back, even beyond the 1917 letter they created this event to discuss.

I look around and feel sorry for the Arabs in the room. They have tied their flag to yet another pole that will only bring additional wasted years, more bloodshed. I cast my mind back to the Arab families I knew so well. Families, friends, in Ramallah, Nablus, Jericho and Bethlehem. In Qalqilya and Tulkarm. These are the choices of the people representing them? It is 16 years since the outbreak of the second ‘intifada’. Since all those bridges were burnt. Another generation wasted. How can you not have sympathy for a desperate people who depend so totally on this, the hopeless cast of a thousand who lead them?

The PRC event

Almost immediately I realised I was not the only Zionist in the room. Jenny Tonge publicly welcomed someone from ‘Israel radio’.  I am not sure why she did this. Tonge used the opportunity to score points, by thanking the reporter for the publicity his articles had brought her in the past. Reveling in her own notoriety.  But she had also passed warning to everyone present that Zionist ears were in the room. From that moment I knew Jenny Tonge would be on her best behaviour.

The event was to launch the ‘apology for Balfour’ campaign and the central thrust was to discuss activity over the next twelve months. Within a week we can expect to see the launch of an online petition – target 100,000 signatures by late Spring. There are also plans to have a large public demonstration in Trafalgar Square at the time of the 100th anniversary.

Then came the speakers. One introducing himself as a ‘British Palestinian’. What a ‘British Palestinian’ is I have no idea. They are born here. They are British passport holders, not refugees. This one Karl Sabbagh was born in Worcestershire in the early 1940’s, so whatever his family did, they did out of their own self interest. His mother was British, of American and Irish parentage. Karl is willing the international community to create an alliance of power to remove the ‘invaders’ and replace the Jewish state. A mirror image of the Zionist monster he imagines in his head. Karl Sabbagh is on a strange personal mission.

The first two talks were nothing special. The same fare I have heard 1000 times. Balfour was ‘a mistake’. The telling of a narrative held together by sticky tape with a C.S Lewis or Enid Blyton signature. The third talk was by Betty Hunter, Honorary President of the Palestine Solidarity Campaign. Enough said.  There was also a ‘special guest’ speaker, who had not been on the programme. Yakov M. Rabkin, ‘a professor of history at the Université de Montréal’. A rabid anti-Zionist Jew.

Then the audience gets to speak. We leave the scripted, careful talk behind, and open up the room for comment. There were four incidents that I need to describe, to expand on this issue of growing antisemitism. But first, the groundwork:

The failure of a science

The pro-Palestinian reasoning is built on falsehoods. It is why ‘anti-Israeli’ is a more fitting description of the movement. In truth, they do nothing to help the Palestinians. Yes, they support their friend the British Palestinian. And yes, they wave the flag of an emotional cause. But to assist the future of the actual Palestinian family? To invest, build infrastructure, help carve the groundwork for a future nation? To encourage sacrificing some of the ‘principles’ to gain future prosperity for the children? These are things *nobody* in the anti-Israel camp ever does.

Kuhn normal scienceThe narrative itself is founded on too many myths to withstand rigorous investigation. The conclusions and assumptions built from within this ‘paradigm’ are therefore also false. This creates major issues for those who have become emotionally invested in the Palestinian cause.

Prior to 2000 there was room to maneuver. As the Oslo process presented a two state option, it was possible to be both ‘for the Palestinians’ and in theory at least, a vocal supporter of Israel. This possibility collapsed in September 2000, in the violence of the second Intifada.

The Israelis and most of the rational world understood the causes and implications of the failure of the Oslo process. Sure, Israel hadn’t been the perfect partner, and no, they hadn’t stuck precisely to the letter of the agreement. But this didn’t cause the intifada. The violence was strategy, a Palestinian choice. The leadership, such as it was, remained unable to provide an end game. They left the negotiating table. Today the weakness of the Palestinian leadership is amplified ten-fold.

For the opposing camp this was a dilemma. The outbreak signaled a major flaw with the underlying assumptions. Enough to cause a shift. This fundamental challenge destroyed the Israeli peace camp. Further, outside of the hard core supporters, the violence ended support for the Palestinian cause. You cannot sell bus bombs to the public.  For the Arab narrative to hold true, additional adjustments needed to be made to the basic principles. So the narrative of ‘demonic Israel’ began to enter the mainstream.

Demonic Israel

Anyone familiar with Thomas Khun’s structure of scientific revolutions understands, there is always strong resistance to change from within the ‘established community’. The community will continue to add ever more elaborate dimensions to their paradigm in an attempt to hold it together. The Israeli left collapsed because they were no longer able to maintain scientific cohesion. For if the Arabs had to be absolved of blame entirely, despite the evidence at hand, Israel needed to turn from a nation seeking to defend itself, into a demon state, capable of committing all evils. The Israeli left knew this was not true.

This ‘demonic’ element is now a primary pillar on which the entire movement is built.  People such as Ben White, Max Blumenthal and Ronnie Barkan have made careers out of it. So as expected, last night, at every turn, Israel was demonised. There can be nothing worthy about Israel at all. When Betty Hunter got the chance to discuss the label of democratic Israel, this is what she said:

“A crucial point that is put in the media all the time, and that is Israel is not a democracy. It is not a democracy because not all the citizens have the same rights. They can’t live in the same places, they can’t get the same jobs, they can’t go to the schools together, they don’t get the same amount back from the taxes, which are equal, that’s very equal between the Palestinian Israelis and the Jewish Israelis, but the benefits do not go to the Palestinian population, and we heard about what happened, as Karl said, to the elected representatives to the Knesset. We just have to remember the campaign that has been going on all year about the Bedouin people who are being driven from their land in their 10,000’s. There has been many more already driven from their lands, but this is the current catastrophe. So it is not a democracy. And that is another issue that we have to explain to the British public.”

Of course, this is nonsense. By any reasonable measure Israel is a vibrant democracy. When placed against the majority of nations on this planet, Israel’s liberal values simply sparkle. But it is important to note the demonic label is not restricted to Israeli policy inside the lands taken in 1967, but rather the opposite. It is vital for the ’cause’, that the very nature of the Israeli state be called into question. Thus the ludicrous labels of Apartheid, Settler Colonial, Genocidal and so on.  Singling out Israel to question its right to exist. It is why the BDS movement has to focus on Israeli citizens as well.

Yet although this demonising process became absolutely crucial if the anti-Israel movement was to maintain integrity, this scientific ‘bolt-on’, created another issue within the ranks. The accusation of antisemitism. The overwhelming majority of Jewish people are Zionists.  According to recent polling, over 90% of Jewish people inside the UK believe Israel is a part of their Jewish identity. Anti-Zionist Jews are but a tiny fringe, split between communists and a single strange ultra-orthodox sect. As you begin to demonise Israel and Israeli supporters, you are effectively tarnishing almost every single Jew.

So we arrive at a crossroads again. How can the cause maintain integrity, whist at the same time allow for the horrific accusation of antisemitism to be leveled towards the humanitarian groups of the left?  Never underestimate the innovation of adherents desperate to maintain the inherent structural logic of their own particular paradigm.  It was time to split the Jewish people.

The Zionist and the Jew

As questions were asked, another Zionist Jew, Mike Abramov, presented himself.  Mike often goes to these type of events to oppose the venom. In a room full of vitriolic, there are brave individuals who will not sit idly as these lies are spread. He spoke up for Israel. The woman sitting next to me said ‘there is always one’. I recognised her, she was at the Lichfield event. Then the turn came of a ‘Palestinian writer and political analyst’ who commented about Balfour being deliberate, rather than a mistake, and then suddenly he went on:

“I want to thank the professor, and what a difference, between the Jew and the Zionist'”  (Applause.) A Jew admits…(pause) most Jews who admit that Israel does not stand for them, should come forward and stand with us, because what we want is coexistence. We don’t want to throw anyone into the sea, we want to reclaim our rights, and we want the world to stand with us for claiming our rights.”

He made that remark in reference to the difference between the acceptable (to him) Jewish anti-Zionist professor and the Zionist Jewish attendee who stuck up for the democratic Jewish state. This comment denied the Jewishness of the Zionist.  It creates a good Jew, a real Jew, and on the other side, the Zionist. Because what is the message here: Real Jews are ones who hate Israel. Only if you hate Israel will we accept you as Jewish. 

Putting aside the veiled threat aimed at anyone who does want to stand with Israel, this is the anti-Israel camp defining what is Jewish and what is not.  Last night, in the House of Lords, my Jewish identity was deliberately and specifically attacked. But there is more:

The Zionists who caused the holocaust

At a certain point in the evening, four ultra-orthodox Jews from the Neturei Karta showed up. As relevant to Judaism as some esoteric Christian sect is to Christianity, yet these same handful are at the front of every anti-Israeli action in the UK. When one came to talk, it is difficult to overstate the bile that came from his mouth.

First, he compared Israel to ISIS. “Isis is a perversion of Islam just as Zionism is a perversion of Judaism.” Then he continued:

“One of the main Zionists in America, Rabbi Stephen Wise,  a reform, a heretic, so called Rabbi,  he spoke in the New York Times in 1905, there are six million, note the number, bleeding and suffering reasons to justify Zionism.”

I cannot stress strongly enough the implication of the instruction to ‘note the number’. This is from a holocaust denial script. The suggestion used on neo-Nazi sites is that this quote is evidence that the Jews had already decided on the six million figure 40 years before the holocaust. Therefore, the holocaust is a hoax.  You can read an example here (NOT SAFE FOR WORK). Why else mention it?  If you Google Rabbi Stephen Wise and six million, almost every site on the page is one to avoid.

Not done with regurgitating the holocaust hoax argument, the man then continued:

“And thirty years later, he made the boycott on Germany, the economic boycott on Germany which antagonised Hitler, over the edge, to then want to systematically kill Jews wherever he could find them. As opposed to ‘Judenrein’, to make Germany free of Jews, a Jew free land. Which is enough, but that is noted by one of our Rabbis, that is what pushed him over the edge. His personal secretary Ribbentrop was in Nuremberg trials, he said to Rabbi Wise(?), this is what, he became a madman after this boycott, Judea declares war on Germany. In Manhattan they had 100, 000 people marching in the economic boycott in 1935, it was the same heretic rabbi who caused that.”

This places the blame of the holocaust squarely onto the Zionists.  Unlike Livingstone, this isn’t even an accusation of a life-saving deal, this is saying that the Zionist actions caused Hitler to go mad and kill Jews.  Good Jews, bad Zionists.  If you want to read more of this type of thought, you can find it on neo-Nazi sites such as Rense or Stormfront.  The one other place where such thought is entertained is on the Satmar website.

Jewish power

Another comment from the audience:

“Chaim Weizmann did a confidence trick back in 1917/1918. He made the British establishment think that world Jewry had power that it just didn’t have. The trouble is, 100 years on, I am not talking about world Jewry, I am talking about ‘that segment’ which we call the ‘Zionist movement’ has that power, and it has it over our own parliament”.

This is the transference of classic antisemitic tropes, from the hands of the Jew to the hands of the Zionist.  This comment makes no sense outside of the existence of antisemitism. How can the ‘Zionist movement’ control anything? Believe me. I’ve met most of the leaders of the Zionist groups in the UK. Nice guys they may be, world controllers they are not.

Worrying times

And the evening was over. I went home. I was physically sick. This is not the first time I have witnessed such an event within the central estate of one of the greatest democracies on earth. What is important to understand is the connection is a logical one, that is central to the cohesion of the argument. Antisemitism is a natural by-product of the anti-Israel position. Further, to maintain integrity, several new myths have to be propagated.

You will frequently hear the tale of the Khazars, suggesting Jews are not even Jewish. Interestingly, they apply the Jewish label freely onto anyone who will demonise Israel. Such as Jackie Walker, Naomi-Wimborne Idrissi and so on. Only Zionist Jews have a fake heritage.

I am hearing more and more mention of Christian Zionism. As if Zionism isn’t actually a Jewish ‘thing’ at all. Rather, antisemites and Christian Zionists created a monster through Balfour, Zionists, with their Jewish status now removed, are evildoers who must be opposed. Real Jews oppose Zionists. Through this method they define ‘Jewishness’. They create a type of Jew it is legitimate to hate. A brilliantly created necessity to prop up a narrative full of holes. Jews must pay the price. At some point someone commented that “if anyone is anti-Semitic it is the Israelis themselves”.

Zionist power. For every insult that was once thrown at Jews, is now safely directed towards any Jew who supports Israel (almost all Jews).  Zionists control the banks, the media and as we heard yesterday, Zionists control the government. How is this not antisemitism?

Zionists have evil intent. Such as the Livingstone episode or the issue above with the Jewish boycott.

These are groups of people with major emotional investment in their cause. They will not simply ‘let go’. It is getting worse because it has to. The anti-Zionist movement cannot maintain integrity without further fueling the split between Jew and Zionist, the more they do this, the louder the accusations of antisemitism will become. The more they must create divisions. A vicious circle.

It is absolutely true that anti-Zionism is not antisemitism as we have seen it before. This is a new breed. A mixture. It is dangerous and it is scary because this anti-Zionist movement cannot survive without carrying the antisemitism along with it.

So for the Jewish Zionist, the vast majority of Jewish people in the world, we become targets. Until someone in a position of power puts a stop to this, preferably through an accepted definition of antisemitism, the vast majority of Jews remain ‘legitimate’ targets of hate crimes. Let’s face it, yesterday, I witnessed a Jew hating festival at the heart of the British estate. In the meantime. Balfour is cause for celebration. The only apology needs to come from those responsible for feeding antisemitism last night.


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37 thoughts on “The Jew, the Zionist and antisemitism at the House of Lords

  1. Dave – I am the loud-mouthed Zionist wearing a white shirt and standing next to the frumas last night. Israel’s pluralism, democracy and achievements were the positives I was trying to put forward in an evening full of negatives. Tonge just stared at me. She is so false. The most shameful part of the evening was the sheer absence of other Zionists. Including you, Jerry Lewis and myself, 3. Disgusting.

    1. so pleased to put a name to the face. I have seen you before. I wanted to come over, but you left just before the end. Will send you an email with contact details. You were excellent and I know what standing up in a room full of venomous haters is like.

      1. I had a good teacher….. Jonathan Hoffman. Let’s meet, Being a Zionist is a lonely passion.

          1. Thank you for posting that Stephen. Did you here the ‘he’s an honest Jew’ comment at 1:57. That says everything I need to know about who was present on that day. This is the trouble Stephen. Hand in hand every time. Antisemitism is the constant bedfellow of anti-Israel activity.

      2. Hi Mike and Dave, I’m a reporter for The Jerusalem Post. Would I be able to talk to you both about the event? What would be the best way to contact you?

    2. As I read the article I immediately thought it was probably you. Well done. Sorry I’m too far away now to join you in future meetings.

  2. David Following your message yesterday I have been waiting in fear and dread to read your blog and it is probably worse than I could have imagined. Right at the heart of our political institutions you witnessed as you say a Jew hating festival full of Nazi Holocaust denial and anti-Semitic tropes. We must now get an accepted definition of antisemitism. Are our Communal bodies not lobbying for this? You have shone a bright light and exposed a dark murky dangerous mind set .Thank you. Others must act on it.

    1. We, as a community, need to define clearly what antisemitism is and campaign for OUR definition to be accepted. If we wait for others to do the ‘right thing’, then we get fobbed off, or antisemitism is whitewashed and the hate goes on unabated.

  3. It does us no good at all to throw out that there were only three of you. How many of us knew anything about this meeting? For those of us observing Simchas Torah, I don’t know if we could have got there in time if we had have known about it. We have enough to fight off those who mean us ill will, never mind those who would do something if we knew!

    1. Sandra. The problem was not lack of interest. It was lack of warning and space. These rooms are small, no sooner had the event gone up, it was fully booked. There were several people who wanted to attend but couldn’t. I gate-crashed. I understand your comment and if ‘3’ was a sign of weakness, you’d be right.. In this case though, it has little meaning.

  4. If neteuri karta are the anti-Zionist “authentic” Jews they claim to be, then they should live in Gaza, with fellow anti-Zionst Hamass and company.

    Let’s see how tolerant Hamass is of “authentic” anti-Zionist Jews, who require the infrastructure of yeshivas, kosher markets, synagogues, baths and more.

    How long would “authentic” anti-Zionist Jews of neteuri karta living Gaza last after some fiery speech from an imam in Gaza? Would being anti-Zionist protect them from the anti-Jewish mobs of Gaza?

  5. I wish David or someone else would ask the audience to raise their hands if they are of the Left or Socialist or Laboor.

    I would guess that you would see a sea of raised hands.

  6. The following definition exists and we should support it whether it is accepted or not by whoever.


    Unfortunately the rise of Jeremy Corbyn to lead the UK Labour party ( being the Party of UK opposition, currently ) has undoubtedly made antisemitism and anti zionism acceptable discourse intentionally or otherwise.

    The political extreme had now become the mainstream.

    Jewish Zionists, Jewish Religious Zionists, Jews who belive in the historical connection to Israel culturally, religiously, historically, and Christians and Muslims need to speak Out repeatedly for the historical truth thatJudaisms roots are from nowhere else but Israel, and the dispersion of the Jewish people was from Israel under whoevers conquest.

    Confronting known historical truth against lies and falsification is the only way to defeat this false revisionism which is even giving it far to much credence.

  7. That Jewish professor is the one I saw at Goldsmiths. His big story is Christian Zionism.
    I am just wondering if the prevalence of of Anti semitism that seems to be wafting into all these meetings is as a result of the failure of all previous arguments of theirs and an element of their true colours starting to show.
    Our biggest issue will always be the anti-Israel Jews. I think of them as those Jews that would aid the Nazis during the war for their own gain ( by acting as informers, organizing for the Nazis etc). Harsh words I know; but when I see these Jews speak I can think of nothing else. They are the legitimises of the anti-Jewish hate mob in the way that the Israeli left could not do and thus collapsed as you say in your piece

  8. FYI: Karl Sabbagh had a Palestinian father who was a radio personality for British propaganda to the Arab world. He married a British woman he met through his work, but was also a bit of rake and dumped her. Karl wound up romanticizing his father and his Palestinian connection, and wrote a rather tepid and narcissistic book about his connection:


    He’s also a so-so popular science writer (you can go to his author’s page at Amazon and see that he’s got several books to his credit) and has worked for the Lancet as an editor, and was usually one of the voices behind the anti-Israeli articles published by that once august publication.

    As someone who lives on the other side of the Atlantic I have no idea if this anti-Balfour tactic has or will have any traction.. From your photograph and report I’d estimate 40-50 in attendance, about 20% of whom were invited presenters. Not being British I also wasn’t even aware that when Lord Balfour issued the declaration he had formerly been Prime Minister until this past week when I finished reading Barbara Tuchman’s “Bible and Sword.” Tuchman’s final chapter “Culmination” is an excellent summary of Lloyd George and Balfour’s actual motivations in the matter and I heartily recommend her overview as preparatory reading for meeting this campaign. She summarily disposes of the “much too promised land” thesis by arguing that the McMahon-Feisel letter and the Sykes-Picot agreement did not promise “Palestine” to the Arabs.

    Balfour in particular, and (irony of ironies), C. P. Snow, founder of the Guardian were rationalists and skeptics, and not motivated by religious dispensationalism or visions of the apocalypse. They favoured a Jewish homeland as a restorative correction to the mistreatment of Jews by Christian civilization, and believed that this selfless act would be to England’s moral credit. I would add, though this is not specified in the book, that this would include Byzantium. Much gets made that “Palestinians” should not have to “pay” for a European sin, but the Byzantine empire was non-European and of the locale. One could also argue that Britain of the day was also a major Islamic power due to her possessions in India and North Africa, and as such might be issuing a correction for the persecution of Jews under Islam as well.

    Of interest, how do Britons today regard Balfour’s legacy as Prime Minister? Lloyd George? Are these men regarded positive, negatively or not at all?

    I thought your article was extremely informative and your analysis was excellent and to the point. Thank you for documenting this event.

  9. You state, “Antisemitism is a natural by-product of the anti-Israel position.” No; other way around. The anti-“Israel” passion of today follows the exact same form as 2,000 year-old Christian antisemitism (how scandalous to say!!).

    Recall, “good” Jews followed Christ; the rest were by definition evil enemies of humanity who would never be anything else until they conformed to what was demanded of them–which was essentially self-dissolution (see the parallel?). If you say “he’s a Christian” it means he’s good; “he’s a Jew” means the opposite (even post-Holocaust). These are memes embedded in our very language (other languages are worse) . That’s why “defining” antisemitism isn’t the cure.

    As for an apology for the Balfour Declaration, how about: (1) an apology to the millions of truly suffering refugees today who are ignored in favour of comfy 3rd generation British-Palestinian “refugees”; and (2) an apology for Hajj Amin al-Husseini, the Palestinian leader who, per Nazi war testimony, worked to get European Jews killed so they couldn’t emigrate to the Middle East.

      1. The Grand Mufti also worked to organize a Waffen SS contingent for the Nazi war effort, i.e, directly carrying out the Holocaust/Shoah.

  10. Every time I see this sort of stuff , I am reminded exactly why I came on Aliyah 41 years ago

  11. Well done, sir – great article, and it seems to have sparked a chain of events leading finally to the suspension of Tonge herself from the Lib Dems.

  12. As rational people we try to understand the anti Zionists – or as I call them ‘the haters’ in rational terms. But that is difficult to do as from most standpoints their venom against Israel seems irrational. Even Norman Finkelstein has called BDS a cult https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iggdO7C70P8 .
    He is now hated by the haters for exposing them for what they are, a cult dedicated to destroying Israel. Interesting that before his cult comment, Finkelstein said he earned $40,000 a year through speaking fees from 80 talks to Palestinian Solidarity groups around North America. Now that is all gone. https://newrepublic.com/article/122257/unpopular-man-norman-finkelstein-comes-out-against-bds-movement
    So now you have three rational reasons for their animation with this cause. There is the addictive and pressured nature of membership of the cult. Addiction which is stoked by emotional anger at Israel and emotional release through anti Israel activities, Pressured through the self reinforcing power of a community of passionate adherents. And then there is the financial and self esteem payoff. The more stridently anti Israel you are the more you will have a prominent role in the haters movement. Resources, prestige and esteem are heaped on the high profile members. And if you cast the Palestinians as heroic victims then you are linked to their heroic victim status too.
    None of this has anything to do with the rights or wrongs of the conflict between Israel and Arabs/Palestinians.
    Interesting that Karl Sabbagh was raised by his British mother but hankers for identity through his absent Palestinian father. The newly appointed Director of the Palestine Solidarity Committee, Ben Jamal has a a similar history. There’s is a whole psychological issue of men who are brought up without a significant male role model and try to remake one in a heroic form.
    And what of the psychology of those who claim to be Jewish and anti-Zionist. In my experience they are all what I call ‘no future Jews’ – i.e. people who claim Jewish heritage (not always technically Jewish!) but who have no intention of contributing to a Jewish future. If they have children then they are not brought up Jewish. So these are ex Jews who want to reinforce their animosity towards being Jewish by using their claimed heritage to add power and authenticity to their attack on their heritage. They are seen as self hating but in their own eyes they love being able to claim Jewishness as this puts their anti-Zionism on a pedestal – being oh so much more courageous than ordinary non Jewish haters and so much more moral than Jewish supporters of Israel.
    The psychological payoff for Neturei Karta is also great. Without their vocal anti-Zionism they would be a tiny and irrelevant group. How loved and important their anti-Zionism makes them – a real purpose for existing!
    So if the basis of anti-Zionism is not rational but psychological then we need to challenge the basis of their psychological rewards. Clearly they hate the idea of being labelled antisemitic as this still has negative psychological connotations, though they are working hard to discredit it.
    Interestingly all the things that Israel does to prove it is a democratic, humanitarian, thriving country actually I believe make the hatred worse because they have to work even harder at justifying their hate. Israel’s success as a dynamic achieving multicultural country is a mega thorn in their flesh which makes them want to redouble their efforts.
    However even more than they dislike being labelled anti-Semitic they would hate to be called anti-Palestinian. And yet they are in so many ways. Maybe this is a message which needs working on?

  13. Also this may not be the place for it, but I saw you have a section with various maps.

    I don’t know if you’ve come across it before, but there is a very interesting map on an Israeli website here:


    I found it here:

    If you click on PEF 1880 on the right hand side, you can see a large map prepared by the British around 1880, showing just how empty the land actually was at that point. I cannot vouch for its authenticity, but I thought that you and other readers of this site might find it useful.

    1. There’s also the issue of immigrants fleeing the collapsing Ottoman Empire 1914-1918, soon adopted by propagandists as “Palestinians.”

  14. Excellent analysis David. Your pieces get widely disseminated and are effective.
    (In ref to you and an earlier commentator -the anti-Zionism / antisemitism process is a positive feedback phenomenon feeding off itself and growing in ever larger spirals . Trying to determine which feeds which is somewhat of a chicken and egg situation. However the analysis of the he need to split Jew from Zionist by the anti-Zionist pro-Palestinian camp is well argued.) An EU working definition of antisemitism exists and needs reiterating although it is still a little weak on the Israel aspects but goes some way to addressing the linkage. (What Brexit will do to the operation of this definition could mean that it needs adopting at UK government level and incorporation into statutes against racism.)

  15. I love the way in which the phrase ‘British Palestinian’ is sneered at, but ‘British Jew’ is used all the time in a perfectly straightforward way. Apparently its all right ti call yourself a Jew if you have one non-Jewish parent but not a Palestinian if you have one non-Palestinian. Truth is always a shaky concept with apologists for Israel. I also like the omniscience with which you say de haut en bas that ‘whatever [my] family did, they did out of their own self interest.’ Most of my family were expelled in 1948. My father, as you well know since you must have read the sources, was a leading broadcaster for the BBC Arabic Service, returning to Palestine from time to time until he was prevented after 1948. At the same time, of course, hundred of thousands of ‘British Jews’ with no ancestral connection to Palestine were allowed in to swamp the country in an attempt to make the indigenous inhabitants a minority.

    1. Karl. Thank you for you comment. I hasten to disagree. I’d accept ‘British Arab’ without reservation, just for example as one would talk of an African American. I have noted the creation of the Palestinian as a mirror image of the Jew. As you highlight here with talk of single parentage. But in reality they are clearly not the same thing at all. It is a desperate attempt to create a work of fiction. The idea that you can be a British Palestinian when you were born here is absurd. British Arab, no problem. My friend is a British Israeli, his children born here are British Jews. I am surprised you cannot see the difference.

      It is also true that your immediate family left prior to 1948. So yes, they did this out of their own free will. I have no trouble accepting many of your friends and family were caught up in the civil war of 1948. It would be absurd for me to think otherwise.

      I am also surprised you suggest British Jews have no ancestral connection to Palestine and work a narrative that suggests the problem began in 1948. Your own family departing prior to this highlights an ongoing issue. But Karl, I have no issue really with you. My hope is for two states, one for the Jews, who need to be able to protect themselves, and one for the Palestinians, who need to control their own destiny in a land of their own.

      I do take issue with all calls for a one state answer. Because it is genocidal. It is not going to happen peacefully, period. Which means the only way it can occur is through a very bloody and very brutal war. I also do not accept antisemitic slurs and comments about the Jews being responsible for the holocaust. That is why I wrote this piece.

      1. When Muslims can’t get along with fellow Muslims, how can anyone expect that Muslims can get along with NON-Muslims.

        See Syria and the 500K+ dead as an example.

    2. Karl – you clearly have no respect for facts. The total number of British Jews who went to live in Israel from 1919 to 1951 was 1,574 – a very different order of number to your ‘hundred of thousands of ‘British Jews’ comment. Your Father’s mother was Brazilian so it is clear that your family were part of a cosmopolitan scene in the early post WW1 period. Your father came to Britain in the mid 1930’s to study here and remained after he graduated in 1939 when WW2 started. Nothing whatever to do with the establishment of the State of Israel in 1948. https://cdn.loc.gov/service/mss/mfdip/2004/2004sab01/2004sab01.pdf. In 1954, having made no effort to return to his ‘ancestral home’ he voluntarily became a US citizen and later chose to go to Saudi ARabia.
      I would be interested to see what evidence you have for the assertion that ‘most of your family were expelled’ since clearly your father left out of self interest and only one of your four grandparents was Arab. And as you probably know, if your father referred to himself as Palestinian prior to the establishment of the State of Israel he would most likely be identifying himself as Jewish!
      Now as to the Jewish ancestral connection with Israel – I’m afraid that genetics confirms why we are called Jews – i.e. people from Judea and also why we are called the Children of Israel – we are descendants of our ancestor Jacob – who was renamed Israel more than 3000 years ago. We have maintained our identity through the millennia and will not give up now. How about instead of wasting your life opposing Israel you chose to really support the Palestinians by seeking real coexistence. Just think how everyone would benefit!

  16. What a well written article David .oh how I wish I could be there as a Zionist to give support
    I have just returned from Poland visiting auchwitz and proudly wearing my Zionist badge

  17. It’s shame the actual bits of your post that were true were uninteresting and those that stimulated the antisemitism hunters among your readers turned out to be made up, which is why the papers who believed your stuff had to issue corrections. No change there, then.

    1. Karl. From reading the statement from the PRC I saw their chief complaint was that some papers apparently didn’t identify the comments as having come from guests, rather than speakers. I think I can state quite clearly, I am always stringent in identifying who said what. There is nothing made up in my blog of course. But we both know that.

      I saw Suarez last night at SOAS. I understand you are the publisher of his book. What a lot of nonsense that is. Shameful.

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