By Daphne Anson
At an Oxford Union debate on 17 January on the motion “This House Believes The Arab World Has Failed The Palestinian People”, that’s how Colonel Richard Kemp, former commander of Britain’s forces in Iraq and Afghanistan, aptly characterised the plight of the so-called Palestinians, pawns in their fellow Arabs’ rejectionist stance towards Israel.
Watch the colonel’s speech here:
The introduction to the motion noted:
“Arab support for a Palestinian state has long been assumed. However, the denial of citizenship to 4.6 million exiled Palestinians, combined with greater Israeli-Arab collaboration, has led some to question their commitment. Are these incidents isolated, or symptomatic of an Arab world that has failed the people of Palestine?”
Apart from Colonel Kemp speakers “in proposition” were, in the Union’s words:
‘Mudar Zahran – Palestinian-Jordanian Secretary General of the Jordanian Opposition Coalition. He has advocated for Jordan to be the Palestinian state’
‘Imad-ad-Dean Ahmad – President and co-founder of the Minaret of Freedom Institute, an Islamic libertarian organisation which counters distortions and misconceptions about Islamic beliefs and practice’
On the opposing side:
‘Lowkey – British-Iraqi rapper and activist known for his politically charged music, including Long Live Palestine. He is a Patron of the Palestine Solidarity Campaign
Ghada Karmi – Palestinian doctor, journalist and academic at the University of Exeter, she fled Jerusalem with her family in 1948
Kito de Boer – Former Dutch diplomat, he served as Head of Mission of the Quartet from 2015 to 2017, an international organisation which mediates between Israelis and Palestinians’
For the entire proceedings go to the Oxford Union’s YouTube channel.
Not the least interesting aspectof this video, of Mudar Zahran’s impassioned speech, comprising a characteristically robust defence of Israel, is the antisemitism expressed in so many of the comments below it on the site.
Meanwhile,on Twitter, no less than three recent tweets by the, the BBC’s former Gaza correspondent, the outrageously partisan (we all know on which side) Jon Donnison, suggest Jonno Donno has been hard hit by the comparatively early death of radical comedian Jeremy Hardy.
I mean no disrespect to the late Mr Hardy by suggesting that the fact he starred in a vicious documentary demonising the IDF may have particularly endeared him to the nakedly leftist BBC hack.