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May 1, 2016 / 23 Nisan, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘United Kingdom’

UK Labour Politician Warns ‘Israel is a Terrorist State Like ISIS’

Saturday, April 30th, 2016

A London politician campaigning for mayoral candidate Sadiq Khan was forced to apologize after sharing a Facebook post warning that “Israel is a terrorist state like ISIS,” according to a post on the Guido Fawkes political website.

The blog post quoted a piece in the British Jewish News Online that was published with an apology from the aforementioned politician, another Labour Party member who is also the leader of Brent Council.

Muhammed Butt, who is the Lead for Equalities at London Councils, shared a clip on social media that appeared to show a young girl from the Palestinian Authority in a conflict with an Israeli soldier. The clip was captioned at the bottom with the words, “Israel is a terrorist state like ISIS.”

Anti-Israel clip shared on FB page of British Labour politician Muhammed Butt, appearing to show Arab girl in conflict with Israeli soldier - caption says Israel is a terrorist state like ISIS.

After being ‘outed’ by the Jewish News Butt issued the standard politician’s apology, saying in a public statement: “I apologize for sharing this on social media. I do not agree with these views and as Leader of Brent Council I have championed diversity, tolerance and respect for all faith communities, and will continue to do so.”

He removed the post after it was brought to the attention of the public – and his political party – by the Jewish News.

But as with the other politicians of late, one questions how it is possible for him “not to agree with these views” if he shares the clip on his Facebook page, where it gains prominence.

The Labour Party has seen at least two politicians benched this past week as former London Mayor Ken Livingston joined MP Naz Shah in being suspended over rampantly anti-Semitic statements. Shah was suspended after a number of posts on her Facebook page from 2014 were ‘outed’ – including an entire graphic in which she advised the relocation of the state of Israel into the United States of America, including a list of reasons and benefits to everyone, especially the Arab world if that could take place.

Livingstone – who has also campaigned for Sadiq Khan – was also suspended when he commented that her actions were “over the top” but not anti-Semitic. To add insult to injury, he referred to Adolf Hitler “supporting Zionism before he went mad and ended up killing six million Jews.”

Moreoever, Livingston refused to retract his statement, insisting in an interview with LBC on Saturday that Hitler was a Zionist and that he was simply stating a fact. “I never regret saying something that is true,” he said. How can I have hurt and offended the Jewish community when the prime minister of Israel said exactly the same thing?”

The reference is to a remark last year when Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told a meeting of the World Zionist Congress in Jerusalem that Hitler’s original intent was to expel all the Jews, rather than annihilate them; the slaughter came at the initiative of the Mufti of Jerusalem, Hajj Amin al-Hussseini, who argued that expulsion would result in all the Jews arriving in the Holy Land, where no Arab wanted them. Livingston contends that Hitler up to that point was a Zionist; furthermore, it was Netanyahu who made the point, he said.

The entire mechanism of the “final solution” clearly has utterly escaped his notice.

There appears to be a crisis developing in the Labour Party with regard to anti-Semitism which is apparently galloping out of control. Party leader Jeremy Corbyn claims to have been an “anti-racist campaigner” all his life – but he has also been a self-declared “friend of Hamas and Hezbollah” as well, and has protected his brother Piers after he made anti-Semitic comments as well.

Meanwhile the upcoming elections for mayor of London are fast approaching – and Labour candidate Sadiq Khan is becoming less and less likely to win the seat, given those who have been his greatest supporters.

In addition, the Home Affairs Select Committee of the House of Commons has just launched its investigation into anti-Semitism in the UK, even with its newly-suspended member still listed on its website. MP Naz Shah still appears as a member of the committee, and her photo and bio still appear on the website.

Hana Levi Julian

British Labour MP Naz Shah Suspended Over Anti-Semitic Posts

Thursday, April 28th, 2016

British Labour MP Naz Shah has discovered a “heartfelt” apology is not enough to get her off the hook for anti-Semitism, even in the UK, even three times repeated.

The Bradford West parliamentarian was ‘outed’ by the Guido Fawkes political website for serious anti-Israel and anti-Semitic Facebook posts she made two years ago.

In a statement she read this week in the British House of Commons, she offered a “profound apology” which she then also posted on Twitter. Shah said that she “made these posts at the height of the Gaza conflict in 2014, when emotions were running high around the Middle East conflict. But that is not excuse for the oofense I have given, for which I unreservedly apologize.”

Labour Party Jeremy Corbyn, who has caught more than a few critical comments himself in recent weeks for the rising anti-Semitism in his party, warned her about the “offensive and unacceptable posts.”

The Board of Deputies of British Jews said the comments were “simply appalling” and called for an urgent meeting “for clarification of her views on Israel and the UK Jewish community.”

Prime Minister David Cameron, a Conservative Party member, simply called for her suspension.

“Jeremy Corbyn and Naz Shah have mutually agreed that she is administratively suspended from the Labour Party by the general secretary. Pending investigation, she is unable to take part in any party activity and the whip is removed,” said a Labour Party statement that followed.

But being unable to take part in any party activities did not indicate whether in fact Shah would ultimately be allowed to remain as a Member of Parliament.

Minutes before the Prime Minister’s Questions (PMQs), Corbyn had issued a statement defending Shah, saying that her social media posts were made before she became a lawmaker.

“Naz has issued a fulsome apology,” he said. “She does not hold these views and accepts she was completely wrong to have made these posts. The Labour Party is implacably opposed to anti-Semitism and all forms of racism.”

Perhaps, but individual members of the party, more than a few, are not – and the number of those who feel free to express those views is rising, particularly under the leadership of Mr. Corbyn. His own brother, Piers, took aim at Jewish Labour MP Louise Ellman — and brother Jeremy defended his right to do so. At the time, Ellman had called for Labour to clamp down on anti-Semitism in the party – but Piers Corbyn called her remarks “absurd” and said, “Zionists can’t cope with anyone supporting rights for Palestine.”

Nevertheless, there were Labour Party MPs who called for Shah’s suspension, including MP Lisa Nandy. Labour MP Kate Hoey told the BBC that Shah should resign “right away” from the Home Affairs Select Committee, which is tasked with investigating the rising anti-Semitism in Britain.

Prominent British politician Lord (Michael Abraham, Baron) Levy recently sounded the alarm that anti-Semitism is rising in the Labour Party itself, and not in the UK in general, and has threatened to leave the fold if something is not done to stem the tide. A son of observant Jewish parents, Lord Levy warned that Corbyn is presiding over what appears to be a resurgence in the party’s acceptance of anti-Semitism.

Hana Levi Julian

Labour MP ‘Outed’ Over Anti-Semitic Posts on Facebook

Tuesday, April 26th, 2016

British Labour MP Naz Shah resigned Tuesday from her unpaid post as an aide after a virulently anti-Israel post and one that was plain anti-Semitic, both written on Facebook in 2014, were highlighted this week on the Guido Fawkes political website.

She apologized publicly Tuesday (April 26) on Twitter for both.

She was careful, however, not to resign from her position on the parliament’s Home Affairs Select Committee – which is set to investigate rising anti-Semitism in Britain.

Anti-Zionist Facebook post shared and highlighted in 2014 by Muslim British Labour MP Naz Shah.

The first offensive post was displayed within the context of an article on the Guido Fawkes political website that explained Shah had “argued Israel should be ‘relocated’ to America and praised the ‘transportation costs’ of deporting Israeli Jews out of the Middle East.” (italics courtesy of Guido Fawkes site) “As these stories go, it is at the more controversial end of the scale…” the writer noted.

Shah had shared a graphic showing an outline of the State of Israel, superimposed on to a map of the United States with the headline “Solution for Israel-Palestine Conflict – Relocate Israel into United States.” The graphic adds:

• “America has plenty of land to accommodate a 51st state;
• The transportation cost will be less than 3 years of defense spending; Palestinians will get their land and life back;
• Middle East will again be peaceful without foreign interference;
• Oil prices will go down, inflation will go down, whole world will be happy.”

Shah added a comment to the graphic: “Problem solved and save u bank charges for 3 billion pounds you transfer yearly.” In the comments section she wrote: “Only problem with that is Israel would need to return all the land and farms it has stolen and give the Palestinians rights which is not possible.” She then added: “Therefore I will tweet Barack Obama and David Cameron and put this idea to them? Save them pocket money?”

All of her 2014 Facebook posts have since been deleted, prompting one to wonder just what else she had opined during that year in which Israel had been forced into another defensive counter terror war with Hamas in Gaza.

For example, Shah had also posted a link on Facebook to a newspaper poll asking whether Israel had committed war crimes, urging her constituents to vote “yes.” Her post screamed in capital letters, “URGENT ACTION… WILL TAKE TEN SECONDS (link) The Jews are rallying to the poll at the bottom and there is now 87% disagreeing and 13% agreeing. CLICK “YES” I AGREE WITH JOHN PRESCOTT THAT ISRAEL IS COMMITTING WAR CRIMES.” FORWARD ON TO ALL CONTACTS RIGHT NOW.”

As the Guido Fawkes site noted, she had also tweeted a link to a blog post comparing Zionism to Al Qaeda, and accusing Zionists of “grooming” Jews to “exert political influence at the highest levels of public office.”

Shah, who is Muslim, was elected to the British parliament the next year, in 2015.  She defeated incumbent George Galloway, who had declared his district off-limits to all Israelis, including tourists.

As she stepped down Tuesday from her unpaid position as Parliamentary Private Secretary to shadow chancellor John McDonnell, the virulently anti-Israel post and a another deeply anti-Semitic one were both made public.

It was the British Jewish Chronicle who had published that second post, reporting that in August 2014, Shah had tweeted the link to a blog called ‘Walk Together.’

On that blog an article entitled “Colonization, Israel, Palestinian resistance and…”, claimed Zionism was “like Al Qaeda.” This was the article that claimed Zionism is used to “groom” Jews to “exert political influence at the highest levels of public office.”

When the Home Affairs Select Committee publishes its report on its investigation into Britain’s rising anti-Semitism, the findings should be most illuminating.

Perhaps the committee members can begin with a mirror as an initial exercise.

A Labour MP said earlier this month the party is starting to look as if it doesn’t care about prejudice against Jewish people.

“We have now got a problem where too many of our Jewish members and people out there in the country think the Labour Party is apathetic to anti-Semitism,” said MP Wes Streeting.

Former Labour parliamentary candidate Vicki Kirby was suspended twice last month over tweets in which she called Hitler a “Zionist God” and said Jews have “big noses.”

Prominent British politician Lord Michael Abraham Levy sounded the alarm in March that anti-Semitism is rising in the Labour Party. Levy has threatened to leave the fold if something is not done to stem the tide.

The Jewish peer has been a chief fundraiser for Labour, and is a longtime friend of former Labour Prime Minister Tony Blair.

Hana Levi Julian

British PM Calls UK Jews ‘British Success Story’ in Passover Message

Sunday, April 24th, 2016

Britain’s Prime Minister David Cameron called the country’s Jewish community a “true British success story” on Friday in his Passover message.

Cameron said British Jews are “excelling in every field and working constantly the build a fairer society for everyone.”

Nevertheless, he said, anti-Semitism spares no Jew.

“As Jewish communities unite to celebrate the festival of Passover, our thoughts will turn to the increasing number of abhorrent anti-Semitic attacks over the past year,” Cameron said.

“Jewish communities, wherever in the world they are, must not be left to live in fear. Sadly, even here in the UK, we still see cases of anti-Semitic abuse.

“I am determined to do everything in my power to stamp it out,” he said. “Part of that is remembering the horror of the Holocaust, because to ignore history is to risk repeating it.”

Cameron, who leads the Conservative Party, has called Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn a “threat to national security.” Corbyn has in the past referred to himself as a “friend” of Hamas and Hezbollah, and has refused to condemn anti-Semitic statements made by his brother Piers.

Recently a number of prominent Labour Party members have expressed dissatisfaction with the rise of anti-Semitism within the central party leadership. Some have begun to distance themselves from the party as a result.

Hana Levi Julian

UK Chief Rabbi Urging Jews to Join War on Poverty

Thursday, October 8th, 2015

(JNi.media) Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis has come out in support of Pope Francis, endorsing 17 goals that will form the blueprint for the battle-plan against global poverty, climate change and inequality. Rabbi Mirvis is urging Jews to ask their MPs to sign up the UK to a set of commitments to end global poverty by 2030.

“Judaism sets out a vision of what the future will ultimately hold for humanity. Our sages teach us that we must work towards a world where there is universal justice, security and truth,” Rabbi Mirvis wrote in Jewish News Wednesday, “Yet, although we have countless references in our religious and Biblical discourse to a utopian, post-messianic era in which these objectives are realized, they also teach us that social justice is very much achievable now. Not at some distant point in the future that we might feel is out of reach – but today, in 2015.”

The chief rabbi reported how, “with remarkably little fanfare, world leaders met last week to adopt what are known as the ‘Sustainable Development Goals’. They are the successor to the ‘Millennium Development Goals’ agreed by the international community in the year 2000 and represent the most realistic and unified approach in human history to tackling global inequality, poverty, hunger and climate change, to name but a few of their priorities.”

“There is reason to be optimistic,” Rabbi Mirvis continued. “The world has lifted more than a billion people out of extreme poverty since 1990 and the proportion of undernourished people in the developing regions has fallen by almost half. But what would our ancestors have made of our progress?”

In the end, Rabbi Mirvis asked his readers to be inspired by American author H. Jackson Brown, Jr. who said, “Live so that when your children think of fairness, caring and integrity, they think of you.”

Tzedek—The Jewish community’s response to extreme poverty—chief executive Jude Williams said: “The Chief Rabbi highlights, as we do, that the globalization of our world brings with it a globalization of our responsibilities. With 1.1 billion people living on less than $1.25 a day, the SDGs are a global plan of action. The Jewish community should play its part.”

JNi.Media

Pro-Israel Legislators in Jerusalem to ‘Stand with Israel’

Tuesday, September 29th, 2015

Twenty-two parliamentarians from 18 countries around the world are in Jerusalem for the annual Israel Allies Foundation conference in Jerusalem and will focus on attacking the Boycott Israel (BDS) movement.

They also will discuss the threat of a nuclear Iran on Israel and the Western world, and Jerusalem as the undivided capital of Israel.

The three-day conference starts on Tuesday and is sponsored by the World Jewish Congress (WJC) and the International Christian Embassy Jerusalem (ICEJ). Represented countries are Britain, Italy, Slovakia, Holland, Greece, Hungary, Czech Republic, Greece, Finland, Canada, South Africa, Uganda, Guatemala, Uruguay, Dominican Republic, Brazil, Chile and Paraguay.

President Reuven Rivlin, several Knesset Members and Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat will address the visitors on Tuesday.

They will tour Judea and Samaria on Wednesday, including the Rami Levi supermarket between Jerusalem and the communities of Beit El and Ofra. Arabs who work with Jews in the market will speak with the delegation.

The group also will visit Bat Galim Shaer, the mother of one of the boys kidnapped and murdered by Hamas last summer.

On Thursday, the parliamentarians will draft and sign a resolution declaring their support for Israel and vowing to take a stance against racist, anti-Israel movements such as BDS.

Jewish Press Staff

Debt-Ridden PA Owes Israel $400 Million for Electricity

Thursday, September 24th, 2015

The Palestinian Authority now owes the Israel Electric Corporation $400 million (1.7 billion. shekels) despite the trumpeted agreement nearly a year ago in which Israel resumed transferring tax collection revenues to the PA for the umpteenth time.

The debt-ridden regime in Ramallah supposedly would use some of the money to cut the debt for electricity, but Israel Electric CEO Ron Tal says the debt has grown to an “insane” amount.

He wants to start cutting the power to the Palestinian Authority, but that is unlikely to happen because the world would start screaming, “War Crime! War Crime.”

In the United States, and elsewhere, if someone does not pay for water or electricity, the municipality or utility company pulls the plug, without being charged with a war crime.

But there is hope, sort of.

The World Bank has announced it is transferring another $25 million to the Palestinian Authority from its “Palestinian Reform and Development Plan Trust Fund” that the Bank manages to support the PA budget.

The World Bank stated:

The funds contributed by the governments of Norway and the United Kingdom will help support the urgent budget needs of the Palestinian Authority (PA), providing inter alia support for ongoing macroeconomic and public financial management reforms.

Since the fund was established in 2008, the World Bank has turned over to the Palestinian Authority a staggering $1.38 billion.

The World Bank statement did not mention anything about what reforms, if any, the Palestinian Authority has carried out, and instead it said the PA economy is suffering from a lack of foreign aid.

Off to the rescue is Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah, who will travel to New York this month for one of the Palestinian Authority’s favorite events, a donor’s meeting at which countries pledged billions of dollars for Ramallah.

Most of the pledges, especially from Arab countries, remain as pledges, just as the debt to the Israel Electric Corp. remains a debt.

Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/debt-ridden-pa-owes-israel-400-million-for-electricity/2015/09/24/

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