Plight of girls in India

The tragedy of being a girl in India

Graham Peebles examines the plight of girls in India, the victims of dysfunctional cultural practices that had been manipulated during the colonial era and, though outlawed, still result in infanticide and murder. More »

Stop AIPAC

How Obama could take on, defeat the Zionist lobby

Alan Hart argues that US President Barack Obama can take on the Zionist lobby in Congress and win, but leaves open the question of whether Obama has the courage to do so. More »

George Galloway

They won’t silence Galloway with half-truths

Stuart Littlewood looks at how Britain’s Israeli stooges, notably the Jewish Chronicle and MP Mike Freer, have resorted to smears and half-truths to damn MP George Galloway and musician Gilad Atzmon. More »

TTIP threat to NHS

Scramble to conclude suspicious EU-US trade deal

With the UK industry in intensive care, Stuart Littlewood asks whether Britons should throw open the door and allow US big business to muscle in under cover of a trade treaty. More »

Netanyahu's war electioneering

Netanyahu trying to provoke war to win election

Uri Avnery explains why many Israelis believe that the sudden flair up on the border with Syria, caused by an unprovoked Israeli attack, was an election ploy by Netanyahu and his companions. More »

Pope Francis and Shimon Peres

A challenge for Pope Francis

Stuart Littlewood calls on Pope Francis to go beyond using fine and pious words, challenge Israeli crime in the Holy Land, and pluck up the courage to visit the besieged Gaza Strip. More »

Binyamin Netanyahu and Europe's right

Netanyahu, Europe’s far right find common ground

Jonathan Cook says Israel’s PM and Europe’s far right’s common vision is a Europe free of Jews, who should be in Israel, and free of Muslims, who risk undermining support for Israel. More »

Terror in Paris

Terror in Paris: how we got there and a way out

Lawrence Davidson views the Paris attacks in the broader contexts that contributed to them, and asks how much blood has to be shed before we honour the only escape route: international law. More »

Netanyahu waving at Paris demonstration

Paris attacks – Islamists’ gift to Israel

Uri Avnery argues that the jihadist terrorist attacks in Paris benefited Binyamin Netanyahu, the Israeli right and Zionism in general, and may also help entrench the Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories. More »

Guernica

The nightmare we called the “Arab Spring”

Nureddin Sabir says the “Arab Spring” had been misunderstood from the start and, at least in Syria and Libya, what were said to be pro-democracy revolutions were in fact Islamist insurrections. More »

Daily Archives: January 28, 2013

Truth-telling British MP in Zionists’ crosshairs

Will David Ward’s scalp soon hang in the Zionists’ tepee?

Time for UK Liberal Democrats to reconnect with their principles

By Stuart Littlewood

Alistair Carmichael is the Liberal Democrats’ Chief Whip. His letter to Karen Pollock of the Holocaust Educational Trust about Member of Parliament David Ward’s remarks just before Holocaust Memorial Day is now in the public domain.

When I read it I hoped it was a hoax. It is shameful. And I say so as someone whose links with the Liberal Democrats go back to the old Liberal Party under the leadership of Jo Grimond, one of Carmichael’s predecessors in his parliamentary constituency of Orkney and Shetland and a man of great principle.

Remember, Mr Carmichael, the pledge to defend the right to speak, write, worship, associate and vote freely? And the commitment to fight oppression, ignorance and aggression wherever they occur?

What David Ward said on his website, which caused such an uproar, was simply this:

Having visited Auschwitz twice – once with my family and once with local schools – I am saddened that the Jews, who suffered unbelievable levels of persecution during the Holocaust, could within a few years of liberation from the death camps be inflicting atrocities on Palestinians in the new State of Israel and continue to do so on a daily basis in the West Bank and Gaza.

Years ago we knew the words of the constitution, and the preamble to it, off by heart and tried to live by them. Remember, Mr Carmichael, the pledge to defend the right to speak, write, worship, associate and vote freely? And the commitment to fight oppression, ignorance and aggression wherever they occur?

Remember our responsibility to promote the free movement of ideas, people, goods and services?

Remember our declared support for international law and the holding of individuals and governments to account for crimes against humanity?

Remember Lord Nolan’s Seven Principles of Public Life, especially the one about integrity? It said: “Holders of public office should not place themselves under any financial or other obligation to outside individuals or organizations that might seek to influence them in the performance of their official duties.”

Put away that scalping knife

If Mr Carmichael still holds these things dear, what objection could he have to David Ward’s remarks? Perhaps, when speaking of Jews, Ward should have differentiated between the Jews of the Jewish state, the Jews in the West who support their criminal enterprise at the Palestinians’ expense, and the Jews inside and outside Israel who bravely oppose the brutal occupation.

As for the professional moaners who are always poised to attack the likes of David Ward, do they represent majority or minority Jewish opinion in Britain? We need to know so that we can differentiate.

By the same token isn’t Mr Carmichael guilty of the same failing? He assured Ms Pollock that Mr Ward “does not represent the views of the Liberal Democrat Party in this matter in any way”. Oh? Was he talking about his close colleagues at Westminster or the party at large?

He also told her he wished to “dissociate the Liberal Democrats without reservation or ambiguity from these [Mr Ward’s] remarks”. Do all Liberal Democrats wish to be dissociated? I doubt it.

And wouldn’t it have been wiser to meet with Mr Ward before dashing off the condemnation that his remarks were “offensive”? What’s offensive, it seems to me, is the hounding of Mr Ward. And the people most entitled to be offended by this unseemly bickering are the terrorized, dispossessed, exiled and imprisoned Palestinians.

A much-respected Israeli Jew, Jeff Halper of the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions (ICHD), yesterday re-emphasized that

the two-state solution is dead, buried under settlements and infrastructure too massive and interlinked with Israel to detach, especially given the lack of will among international governments, led by the US and Germany, to exert the pressures on Israel needed to force such massive concessions. But the international community will not move beyond the two-state solution unless prodded – virtually forced – by us, the international civil society. We have the wind to our back. Over the years we have collectively transformed the Palestine issue into one of the world’s great causes, at the level of the anti-apartheid struggle.

The Liberal Democrats would do well to reconnect with the party’s basic principles, align it with this “great cause” and go see for themselves the situation in Gaza, East Jerusalem and the West Bank (though not of course by guided tour with Friends of Israel). Mr Carmichael says elsewhere that he made the trip himself in 2007, describing it as “eye-opening”.

So put away your scalping-knife, please, Mr Carmichael. With Holocaust Memorial Day behind us perhaps feathers can be smoothed and the issues addressed more calmly. The challenge to Israel’s unspeakable behaviour is not going away, nor should it until the regime’s attitude changes fundamentally and the occupation ends. In the meantime those who support, defend and perpetuate it must accept some of the blame.