A couple of years ago I blogged a long Twitter conversation between myself and a “peace activist” named Gary Spedding, as well as exchanges between him and Gilead Ini of CAMERA.
The text proves beyond any doubt that Spedding is a liar who enjoys scrubbing evidence of his hate. (He tried to say the Fogels were murdered by a domestic worker, not an Arab terrorist, for example. He then deleted the post, denied ever writing it, and when confronted with screen-shot evidence kept denying it.)
Later it was shown that Spedding had been involved in a violent anti-Israel demonstration in Belfast. As the Israeli embassy in London said then, “Mr Spedding’s entry into Israel was denied due to his involvement in organising a violent protest in Queens University, Belfast, in which an Israeli representative was attacked, and others were forced to take shelter to prevent being hurt. No country has an obligation to allow foreigners who have been involved in violent activities targeting its nationals to enter its territory.”
Spedding lied about this incident as well, claiming falsely that he was given a “ten year ban” to go to Israel merely for “lying” and being an unspecified “security threat.”
You cannot grant Spedding any credibility after reading those posts of mine, or this other series.
But Haaretz can.
Spedding wrote an article about how he witnesses too much antisemitism on the pro-Palestinian side, and he is upset. Not so much because antisemitism is evil, but because the existence of antisemitism gives credence to the idea that most anti-Zionists are, deep down, antisemitic, which Spedding disputes. He says that “Israel advocacy groups weaponize anti-Semitism to stifle and shut down debate and legitimate criticism of Israel” and “activists will sometimes inadvertently share anti-Semitic or deeply offensive posts. This is the product of ignorance as opposed to malicious intent towards Jews.”
The most hilarious part is where Spedding, who went to great lengths to delete his offensive writings from the Internet, self-righteously says “Whatever the motivation, it’s the words that matter; this is what makes the public record.”
The bulk of the op-ed isn’t that terrible; Spedding does call out a real problem. But the entire op-ed is a pathetic way for Spedding to try to rehabilitate himself, and Haaretz is all too happy to allow this violent anti-Israel activist to use its platform to try to make him sound like a peacemaker.
Haaretz and Spedding belong together.
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