Yesterday, 10th October, Palestine Action organised a protest outside an office of Elbit in Kingsway, Holborn. A counter demonstration was called by London’s Jewish activists who refuse to leave the streets to the haters. In the end, in what is becoming an increasingly dangerous atmosphere, the Jewish demonstrators were attacked with red paint, a police officer was injured, and six Palestine Action activists were arrested.
Palestine Action and the protest
Under regional titles such as London Palestine Action, the group have been vandalising bus stops for a few years. The birth of the group came following frustration by a few extremists over the inactivity and impotence of the Palestine Solidarity Campaign. Their strategy is simple. They do not believe in waving flags but seek direct action that creates noise and publicity. In other words, they vandalise stuff and then brag about it. At the moment the Israeli defence company Elbit is the key target for the group.
Recently Palestine Action ‘occupied‘ the roof of an Elbit factor at Shenstone in Staffordshire. Several activists were eventually arrested. Shortly before this, they attacked the Elbit offices in London. Again there were arrests.
Palestine Action are not a new group but have become reinvigorated with the arrival of Huda Ammori. Ammori is a woman with a troubled past. Her father is Palestinian, her mother Iraqi. Ammori was originally part of the Manchester branch of Palestine action but in 2018 started working for the PSC as their Campaigns Officer. She was also part of a steering committee for a fake Jewish anti-Israel group. At some point she seems to have tired of all the talking and turned her attention to helping to build a network of extremists willing to engage in direct action.
In their online recruitment campaign, Palestine Action openly ridicule the police. Whilst instructing people how to vandalise buses, bus stops and buildings, they soothe the fears of potential recruits by informing them they will not be prosecuted if caught. Which leads us to the latest action. The group put out a call for a demonstration outside the Holborn office. For those who know the group are never just about waving flags, this should have been a warning.
The people gather
A counter protest of Jewish activists began to arrive from about 12:30. They took up place directly outside the building. In all, about fifteen arrived. With flags, banners and megaphones, the singing and dancing started:
Shortly afterwards, groups of anti-Israel activists began to arrive. All the usual faces were there. I often say that whenever the Palestinian flag is raised, antisemitism is a pillar holding it aloft and this demonstration was no different. For the purposes of this blog I will give just three examples – John Tymon (founder of Football against Apartheid), Carol Foster (ex co-chair, Greater London Labour Representation Committee) and Sarah Wilkinson (West Midlands PSC).
And examples of the antisemitism they carry with them – Mossad did 9/11, the demon Jewish lobby and Holocaust denial:
I identified approximately 30 of the demonstrators and could easily have spent days writing a report to highlight the sewer of Jew hatred that came out to protest, but that is not the purpose of this piece. The bottom line is that many of these anti-Israel activists think the same way about Jews. Suffice to say with the examples I have provided – my point about antisemitism being a pillar upon which anti-Israel activism is built – is proven once again.
The fools, the idiots….
Even when I come across hardened activists it usually doesn’t take long in a discussion before I realise I am debating a person with sound-bites and little else. Yesterday was no different. These people simply do not know anything about the actual history of the conflict nor the geo-political reality of the region. At best they have read the nonsensical rants of people like Asa Winstanley in rags such as Electronic Intifada. How can someone actually feel motivated enough to go out and demonstrate against a nation they simply know nothing about? Which is why I believe antisemitism is often the answer.
I spoke to five fools. Not one could deal with basic questions. One conversation stood out. So people do not think that she was some random passer by – I spoke to the woman holding the banner on the left side of this Palestine Action banner.
And the Palestine Action racists
I am rarely left speechless and I carry on a polite conversation for as long as I can, but the chat with Ms ‘Green’ was too much even for me. At first it was just conspiracy stuff about Mossad. I attempted a different approach and probed her thoughts about what would happen if radical Islamists took over the new ‘Palestinian state’ and started firing rockets at Israel. She dismissed this as propaganda. I pushed, and bringing up Syria, Lebanon, Libya and other Arab states, asked how she could be so sure. At this point she berated me – ‘don’t talk to me about Arabs’ she said, ‘I hate them’. When I tried to point out Palestinians were Arabs – she dismissed me as if I were crazy.
This is the level of knowledge of people who are somehow motivated enough to spend their Saturday afternoon holding up a banner calling for the closure of a business in the UK. The exchange was caught on camera.
Even if we dismiss the stupidity and ignorance, can we dismiss the blatant anti-Arab racism? ‘I hate the Arabs‘ – jaw dropping racism on the streets of London.
The Palestine Action attack
It always disturbs me when I see fresh-faced students at protests. There were several at this Palestine Action event. The refusal of so many universities to adopt the IHRA definition of antisemitism means demonising lies about Zionists and Zionism are still freely spread on campus. For most, the hatred of the Jewish state was not picked up at home but was taught at a UK higher education institution that receives state funding. Heart-breaking.
The event started as just two sides trying to outdo each other by making the most noise. The anti-Israel protestors outnumbered the Jews by about 5 or 6 to 1 and soon stood both to the left and right of those waving the Israeli flag. The atmosphere amongst the haters was hostile but relatively calm. After about an hour, all that changed. A dark-coloured car suddenly pulled up by the kerb and some people rushed out holding buckets of paint. They threw the paint towards the offices. Standing between the thugs and the building were the Jews, who were themselves surrounded by police. Several of the Jewish demonstrators and police were hit by the red paint during the attack.
The police quickly pounced on those who had thrown the paint. Apparently there were six Palestine Action activists arrested. One policeman was reportedly hurt, with some suggesting his arm was broken. The car was impounded.
There are several videos of the attack circulating online. Well-known Jewish campaigner Jonathan Hoffman was one of the worst hit:
The thugs must be dealt with
In one piece of footage we see a woman come up to Jonathan Hoffman after the attack, laughing and making rude gestures. That woman is Sarah Wilkinson, the Holocaust denier. A Holocaust denier enjoying an attack on a British Jew and ridiculing him publicly – on the streets of London in 2020. These are sickening scenes.
The Jewish activists kept singing even after they had been hit. A burst of Israel’s national anthem Hatikvah rounded off their event, but this is not the point. Several were visibly shaken.
The activists knew the Jewish demonstrators were there, but decided to carry on regardless, there is no doubt the attack on the Jews was deliberate. This group openly laugh at the police who they say will not charge them. If the police want to make the streets safe for British Jews – it is certainly time to prove the toxic hate group wrong.
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