By Daphne Anson
As I noted last week, anti-Israel events are sprouting thick and fast in the countdown to 2 November and the centenary of the Balfour Declaration, with Israel-denouncing Christians doing their share of the participating.
One such event that caught my eye was that held on 7 October at the British Library. Sponsored by the anti-Israel Middle East Monitor, it was entitled “Palestine, Britain and the Balfour Declaration 100 Years on”.
Professor Avi Shlaim, Emeritus Professor of International Relations at Oxford University, was the keynote speaker, and you can read about the rest of the panelists, and their highly biased offerings, here, where there is also a video and several photos of the event. Begins the account:
“The grey weather did not deter the hundreds of attendees who arrived early on Saturday morning at the British Library in London to attend MEMO’s conference to commemorate 100 years since the Balfour Declaration. A heavily subscribed event, the conference took a detailed look at Britain’s role in the creation of Israel, past and present, showcasing an alternative narrative to the celebrations promised by British Prime Minister Theresa May.
Attendees were able to purchase books on the Palestinian issue, including those shortlisted for the Palestine Book Awards 2017 and indulge in refreshments before being ushered into the auditorium. They were welcomed by Dr Daud Abdullah, the Director of MEMO, who expressed the importance of recognising the Balfour Declaration for what is was.”
Professor Penny Green of Queen Mary’s University of London, chaired the first session, journalist Peter Oborne (notorious for his obsession with Britain’s so-called “Israel Lobby”) the second, and Corbynista ex-Labour cabinet minister Clare Short [read me here] the third.
“Zionism was a settler colonial movement and the state of Israel its progeny, is a settler colonial state,”
declares that account, inter alia,in effect summarising the conference’s thrust.
Note this paragraph:
“Journalist David Cronin [associate editor of the Electronic Intifada, folks], looked at strategies used to oppose the Israeli occupation, namely the use of boycotts. He pointed out that Balfour had an aversion to boycotts, namely because of the powerful symbolic nature that withholding payment presented. He advocated that the international community and Palestinians should harness the power of boycotts to bring about a change in Israel.”
And these (emphasis added):
“Dr Jacob Cohen [praised by no less an antisemite than Gilad Atzmon here], who joined the Zionist movement at the age of 16 before leaving it four years later, also praised how the Boycott Divestment Sanctions (BDS) movement had expanded its international influence and hoped that the global community would continue such long-term campaigns. He was heckled during his speech when he accused of Israel of perpetuating conflict in order to receive foreign aid and weapons investment, an argument the majority of the audience applauded.
When the discussion opened to the floor, a pro-Israeli commentator spoke in defence of Israel, alleging that it had made peace with Arab countries, retreated from Gaza and was prepared to sacrifice it’s land for peace. Other questioners spoke positively of the support for the Palestine movement and encouraged all listeners to transform their attendance into activism.
As the attendees filed out of the auditorium, many expressed their gratitude to MEMO for hosting such a comprehensive event that had invited speakers from all over the world, to discuss the origins of an enduring conflict that has affected millions of people.”
There he sits, if I’m not mistaken, in the centre of this photo of the audience, that same “pro-Israel commentator”, I’ll wager, namely the intrepid Jonathan Hoffman (good onya, sir!):
A shot of the event by a certain clerical anti-Israel activist:
(Plenty of antisemitic posts below the line on the account I’ve linked to show some of the supporters of the event for what they are.)
Incidentally, just when I thought that theological Christian antisemitism was sooooooo last millenium:
Our old friend makes a despicable analogy:
Meanwhile, more mischief here
Oh dear! I do hope that next guest didn’t catch our old friend’s, um, anti-Zionism!