Photo Credit: YouTube screenshot
Omar Barghouti

Omar Barghouti, scheduled to speak at a Palestine Solidarity Campaign event in Brighton on Sunday, together with Labour’s Shadow Home Secretary Diane Abbott, and chair of Labour Friends of Palestine and the Middle East Lisa Nandy, has been told his UK entry visa application was delayed, the Jewish Chronicle reported Friday.

Barghouti is a committee member of the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI) and a front-man for of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement.

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The Palestine Solidarity Campaign (PSC) stated on Friday that Barghouti was unable to travel to the UK “because his visa was abnormally delayed by the British government without explanation,” and blamed it on “growing efforts by Israel and its allies to suppress Palestinian voices and the movements for Palestinian rights.”

While actively lobbying for a worldwide economic, cultural and academic boycott of Israel, Barghouti was studying at Tel Aviv University as recently as 2009, and holds a master’s degree in philosophy (ethics) from the same university, and is pursuing a PhD there.

Barghouti accuses Palestinians who engage with Israelis in intellectual debates and artistic partnerships in the spirit of inter-cultural dialogue of being “guilty of moral blindness and political shortsightedness” and says they must be “clinically delusional or dangerously deceptive.” In response, Samir El-Youssef, a British writer who was born in a Palestinian refugee camp in southern Lebanon, wrote that “Barghouti’s ‘true peace based on justice’ is that Israel must be punished, brought down to its knees, before a Palestinian is allowed to greet an Israeli in the street.”

The event where Barghouti was invited to speak on Sunday is “The World Transformed,” a four-day event “about setting a radical agenda for the Corbyn project and beyond.”

The Corbyn Project was described in May, 2018, by Robin Blackburn in New Left Review, where he writes, in a lengthy article titled, aptly, The Corbyn Project:

“A Corbyn government would be committed to a wide-ranging nationalization program, bringing major utilities—railways, water, energy and Royal Mail—into public ownership, ‘to deliver lower prices, more accountability and a more sustainable economy.’”

Yours truly will withhold comments on efficiently run government utilities, because, well, life’s too short.

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