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Archive for the ‘antiSemitism’ Category

Antisemitism and Jewish Labour

Once again the British Labour Party is under attack from its own Members of Parliament because it refuses to accept wholesale a defintion of ‘Antisemitism’ that has been widely adopted elsewhere. Hardly anywhere is there a media mention of the fact that the ‘definition’ has actually been accepted by Labour (despite it not qualifying as a defintion since it is too vague and has to be supported by ‘examples’ – see previous posts).

But:  am I the only person who thinks that defining antisemitism in this way is a demand by Zionist Jews to be treated differently? And isn’t that inherently racist?

Antisemitism is racism. Allegations of racism, including antisemitism, must be investigated by police, (the so-called ‘MacPherson principle’), to determine whether an offence has been committed.  So, amidst this furore of allegations, how many have been reported to the police? How many have been investigated? How many people are being prosecuted for antisemitic actions including words spoken or written?  How many convicted?  Rather than suspending people, call the police!

I’ve previously written on the ‘Campaign Against Antisemitism’ including this:   ‘As of 30th April 2018 I’ve looked at all of the incidents and many of the tweets/posts complained of. Some could be characterised as unwise but most are reasonable comment. Two merited action, which was taken. (Interestingly CAA classifies a person as an ‘incident’. If, however, we take a more normal approach to ‘incident’ and take specific dates; for the Labour Party there are 119 of which 2 are antisemitic, so under 2%. When we look at the other political parties the proportion is 18.5%.)’.

Are Zionists determined to destroy the Labour Party? If so, that surely would imply the interference in our political system of another nation, Israel. If our police force have investigated t

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Antisemitism, the British Labour Party and IHRA

The recent outcry against Labour for not fully endorsing the IHRA definition of antisemitism demands comment.

The protesters have a legal opinion ‘prepared by law lecturer Tom Frost and confirmed by Doughty Street QC Jonathan Cooper’ (Guardian 16th) that ‘ Labour has ignored the so-called Macpherson principle – that a racist incident is one perceived to be racist by the victim’.  As pointed out by others Macpherson was considerably more nuanced than that simple statement. see i.e. Antony Lerman 

The Guardian follows up with this:  ‘The Macpherson principle, read more

Campaigning Against Antisemitism – or not …

The ‘Campaign Against Antisemitism’ sounds like an organisation any right thinking person should want to support, and in principle, I do. But I try to be cautious about what I’m joining, doing the research to see if things ‘add up’.   I’ve recently spent a lot of time checking out the website of ‘Campaign Against Antisemitism’ and you can see what I found on the Articles page of this website. You can download as a.pdf file here.

I point out the ‘Campaign Against Antisemitism’ is dangerous because, inadvertantly, it undermines its cause. You cannot prevent the singling out of a people-group for negative attention; Jews, by singling out that same people-group for special attention. Arguing, correctly, that Jews should be treated no differently to any other group it nevertheless treats Jews separately from other groups experiencing racism.

I call attention to the fact that the evidence they present is thin, and that its methodology is poorly applied.  What it looks like is not an attack on racist antisemitism, but an attack on ‘Labour under Corbyn’, in other words it is political to its core.  Rather than being a campaign against antisemitism I suggest that this organisation may be both racist and antisemitic.

Zionism is antiSemitic

(Edited from Original post of September 2016)

My Objection to Zionism has nothing to do with Jews as a people group.  It isn’t Jews I have a problem with but the ideology that some Jews, (and sadly, some Christians) hold. I have to oppose Zionism because it is racist, exceptionalist and militarist. These should not be attractive characterstics for evangelical Christians, (like me), although they will be if you have an affinity with e.g. KKK, BNP, Frances FN or any other ethnic supremacist party, (whether white, black or other).

Zionism claims that it is simply about the rights of Jews to live in a land of their own, which sounds reasonable until we examine what that means in practice. The fact is that the land most Jews in Israel-Palestine now live on and the land they are taking away daily by building settlements is land where another people, Palestinians, live and have lived for many generations.

The Zionist arguments in justification are exceptionalist – the Jews are special (that, by the way, is not the same as the ‘chosen people’ argument. Most of the early Zionists were secular socialists).  Zionists believe that Arabs are inferior, not just different. It is only necessary to listen to their descriptions, ‘snakes’, ‘rats’, ‘dirty’, etc. That is racism.

Thus, to defend Zionism is to give comfort to a system that denies the inherent equality of humankind —  contradicting both creational monotheism (Hebrew) and the Christian Gospel — and demands special treatment for one people group, Jews, over all others, especially Palestinians. Defending Zionism is to support an ideology that achieves its aim of occupying all the land through overwhelming military force – the ‘Iron Wall’ and retains control by militaristic, economic and political oppression. It is to praise a system that allows democracy only when Jews are in a substantial majority.  Militarist, racist, exceptionalist, it is utterly at odds with true Judaism and as far as can possibly be from the Sermon on the Mount. (Mt 5-7) and the commssion Jesus gave his followers.

The claim that anti-Zionism is anti-Semitic reverses logic. The real anti-Semitism is the claim that anti-Zionism is anti-Semitic. Put it simply; because in its inherent nature it defines all Jews as racist, militaristic and exceptionalist it is Zionism that is anti-Semitic.

Evangelicals lacking courage

Fear of being called ‘antisemitic’, of being thought divisive, of losing influence or income? Are these some of the reasons few evangelical charismatic church leaders have had the courage to engage with Christian Zionism. (Odd, when we engage easily enough with the LGBT issue). Palestine has too easily been dismissed as a local difficulty with complicated history involving disputed texts and of little relevance to ‘our ministry and mission’. I have heard from ministers, “there’s no interest among my congregation” – as if that should be a defining factor – when I know people in their congregations who are interested.

Not relevant. When ‘extremist terrorism’ arrives on our doorstep and we demand instant explanations from politicians, the easy answer is, it’s a different religion or culture. It isn’t necessarily meant arrogantly, but that is what it is. Is religion in UK or USA or Germany or Denmark, one-dimensional?  “Those terrorists hate us”; a statement that ought logically to be followed by the question, “why?” and some attempt at rational analysis, is left hanging, as if it helps solve the problem.Obviously it doesn’t; and the logic is not actually that difficult, as long as we are prepared to look candidly at our history.

Cultures and religions have coexisted in relative peace and calm for centuries in many parts of the  world. Not that it has always been peaceful and calm, we know life is more comlicated. But, if people hate us —  and surprisingly few do — from where does the hate come? Extremism is not something cultured in a petrie dish that unhappily escaped due to some laxity in Frankenstein’s laboratory. It has a background, a history. People do not, usually, put themselves in harms way without good reason. In the last 100 years Britain and America sent hundreds of thousands of young men to fight, and many to die, motivated by a desire to defend their homes and a hope for freedom. It is lazy and arrogant thinking to assume that terrorism is fuelled by motives less powerful, even less pure, than our own.

Our Evangelical and Charismatic failure to attend to both history and theology in dealing with Christian Zionism; sometimes in a misguided attempt to avoid involvement in politics, (as if ); is the more sad from the perspective of our kingdom mission imperative because of the immense damage Zionism and its so-called ‘Christian’ parter has done and is doing to God’s world and God’s gospel.

Lord Have Mercy.

Balfour re-visited: Broken promises

This is an edited re-post as we approach the centenary of BALFOUR

The correspondence between the Sharif of Mecca (Husayni, or Hussein) and Sir Henry McMahon, HM High Commissioner in Egypt, is clear: Great Britain…

promised an independent Arab nation in the whole of the Arabian peninsula bounded on the West by the Red Sea and Mediterranean, on the South by the Indian Ocean, on the East by the Arabian Gulf and the border with Iran-Persia, and the North along a line just south of parallel 37, subject to minor exceptions which included  Basra and Bahgdad; the Trucial States, and certain coastal  districts to the west of Damascus, Homs, Ham and Aleppo.

Earl Grey, Foreign Secretary during WW1, stated to Parliament in 1923

“I think we are placed in considerable difficulty by the Balfour declaration itself. … it promised a Zionist home without prejudice to the civil and religious rights of the population of Palestine. A Zionist home, my Lords, undoubtedly means or implies a Zionist Government over the district in which the hoome is placed, and if 93% of the population of Palestine are Arabs, I do not see how you can establish other than an Arab Government without prejudice to their civil rights. … I do see that the situation is an exceedlingly difficult one, when it (Balfour) is compared with the pledges which were undoubtedly given to the Arabs.”  Quite so!

In the same debate Lord Buckmaster remarked,   “I think we ought to say what we mean, and I think we ought to do what we say…. We certainly meant what we said in 1915. We did not do what we said in 1918″ and concluded that the British government should “go back to obedience to the promise that we gave at a moment when we were gravely beset by difficulties, to the relief of which the Arab help in no slight degree contributed”

On April 27th 1920 Field Marshall Viscount Allenby wrote (by telegram) to Emit Feisal:

“As regards Palestine you have always been aware (he was not), that His Majsty’s Government were pledged to creating a national home for the Jews in Palestine, an intention in which administration acquiesced. His Majesty’s Government will regard themselves as under an obligation which will be confirmed by terms of mandate to safeguard in fullest manner the interests of indigenous inhabitants of the country.”

In his reply, amongst other things Feisal points out:

“As regards …  the creation of a national home for Jews in Palestine … all that I have admitted is to safeguard rights of Jews in that country as much as rights of indigenous Arab inhabitants are safeguarded and to allow same rights and privileges.     Arabs of Palestine, both Christian and Mahommedan, have repeatedly availed themselves of every opportunity against any agreement or pledge that they would make their motherland the national home of Israelites.” 

Britain promised Palestine to the Arabs, we lied and we broke covenant. Scripturally, God regards any promise as made through him. We have taken in vain the Name of The Lord. Christ have mercy.

If you who are still wondering why the Mufti hated the British and sought help from Hitler in the 1930’s perhaps you should seek help not from history but from an analyst.

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