Rabbi Howard Cooper’s Act of Bad Faith


It probably should have come as no surprise to see Rabbi Howard Cooper peddling his wares on CiF on February 19th.  After all, he is a member of Independent Jewish Voices, has defended Caryl Churchill’s antisemitic playlet ‘Seven Jewish Children’, describes Israel as being “morally bankrupt” and as having “reached a new and shameful nadir in its history” for defending its citizens against years of Hamas rocket attacks as well as having the gall to elect a government of which he does not approve.

Nevertheless, even the predictable can be disappointing. It is sad to see yet another British Jew collaborating with the Guardian in its long-term assault on Israel’s legitimacy. It is even more disturbing to see a Rabbi cynically use the Jewish faith as a tool with which to advance the political concept that Israelis do not represent ‘the true spirit of Judaism’. However, given Rabbi Cooper’s egregious record, it is reasonable to assume that he is entirely aware of what he is doing and that for his own political reasons he has no qualms about presenting himself as an authoritative voice giving undeserved credence to the Guardian World View that the nice, docile and ‘authentic’ Jews are the ones who do not live in or support Israel.

Exploiting his position as a religious leader, Rabbi Cooper stokes the fires of the growing urban myth – fuelled by the Guardian and certain other media outlets – to the effect that Israelis were disturbed to see Hosni Mubarak toppled last week.

“I recognise the notion of bending “the arc of history toward justice”. It forms part of my understanding of a Judaic vision for humanity. So I was saddened by the predominantly muted and apprehensive response to these uplifting events from many of my fellow Jews in the UK and in Israel. How is it possible, I have wondered, not to be moved and inspired by the sight of a people finding its voice to join protests against decades of dictatorship, corruption, brutality and repression?”

“Is it because this begrudging Jewish response has been dictated not by a recognition of the power of the human spirit to overcome oppression, but by fear?”

“But the spectre of Israel once again surrounded by implacable annihilatory enemies haunts the Jewish imagination. It’s as if fear is soldered to our soul. Fear that past patterns of prejudice will be repeated and thereby determine our future. I find this kind of fearfulness both dispiriting and a betrayal of the Judaism I hold dear.”

“For our response to these events to be dictated by our fears, rather than our hopefulness about the human spirit, is an act of bad faith: it reneges on the spiritual vision of our Judaic heritage. In secular terms, it puts us as Jews on the wrong side of history – it puts us on the side of repression and brutality.”

Those are undoubtedly easy words to write in Finchley, but they show a lack of empathy for the people living in Israel which is quite shocking when one considers that they come from a man who supposedly understands human beings both as a religious leader and a psychoanalyst. What Rabbi Cooper is saying is that anyone who is not as completely and utterly overjoyed as he is to see unrest on the streets in surrounding countries, anyone who is apprehensive of what the future may bring to the region, is betraying Judaism. That is a very serious charge.

It is a charge, however, which can only come as the product of a specific environment. Happily, there are some Jews in the world today who do not possess the collective memory of persecution in pre-war Europe, Soviet Russia or Arab countries.  They have no understanding of the fear of a mob in the streets or the chill of hearing the cry of ‘Itbah al Yahud!’. They have never been stoned or bombed or attacked by missiles. They have never had to leave their homes in the middle of the night to search for safety in unfamiliar places. Their children have never had to see, let alone use, a gas mask or a bomb shelter.  These things are not ‘spectres’ or products of the ‘Jewish imagination’ as Cooper claims, but very real and present phenomena.

And so, people like Rabbi Cooper can allow themselves to condescendingly lecture others from their particular little island of safety and comfort and – reprehensibly – cast judgement upon their emotions. Predictably, the Rabbi Coopers of this world always come from very privileged societies; we do not see Jews from Iran, Venezuela or Morocco indulging themselves in accusations of betrayal of their shared faith against other Jews in the Middle East.

Rabbi Cooper’s empathy for the Egyptian people shows no bounds; he takes great pains to show in this article that he is on ‘the right side of history’ and if, in order to do so, he has to collaborate with the perpetuation of an unfounded urban myth and even engage in a little ‘sinat hinam’ (baseless hatred) by categorising Jews into good ones who think like him and bad ones who ‘betray’ Judaism, that obviously does not worry him. Neither, apparently, does his rather astounding ability to claim a monopoly on Judaism.

To some, that may seem like strange behaviour for a Rabbi, but the reason for it is perfectly obvious – Rabbi Cooper’s politics trump both his chosen professions.  For him, ‘the right side of history’ does not end in Tahrir square. It involves being on the ‘right side’ in his own society too and in some circles that means post-Zionism and a required ability to empathise more deeply with people who do not belong to his own ethnic group than those who do. And so, just as he was unable to find any sympathy for the children of Sderot when he wrote about operation Cast Lead on his blog (they did not even get a mention), he is also now devoid of any empathy towards those who hope that the Egyptian people are not about to exchange one kind of dictatorship for another.

Any fears that Israelis have about the eventual outcome of the Egyptian uprising are based both on a keen understanding of the forces at work in the region and the experiences of the rise to power of radical Islamist elements in both Lebanon and Gaza by means of democratic elections. Those fears are founded in reality and are certainly no less legitimate than Rabbi Cooper’s own fears regarding the need to be publicly seen to be on the ‘right side’ for the sake of his own self-preservation.

The real ‘act of bad faith’ here is committed not by people displaying honest apprehension at what the future may realistically bring in terms of renewed violence and conflict in this region, but by a man basking in the relative safety afforded by a few thousand kilometres  of distance between himself and any potential danger, who is prepared to abuse his position in order to belittle and deride the legitimate fears of others solely to increase his own esteem in the eyes of his political fellow travelers.

(Postscript: Please note this video of the massive rally in Cairo on Friday, addressed by Yusuf al-Qaradawi.  The chants you hear the crowd roaring are “To Jerusalem (al Quds) we go, for us to be the Martyrs of Millions”)


44 comments on “Rabbi Howard Cooper’s Act of Bad Faith

  1. Perhaps the rabbi will have the courage of his convictions and come here and explain to us why he considers that the freedom of the Egyptians from Mubarak should be so important to us that we should not spare a moment’s thought for its effect on us and on our own country.

    Perhaps he will also explain why his article was published on the Sabbath, disregarding biblical injunctions.

  2. Speaking as an Aussie, all I can say is that the British Progressive rabbinate sure has some winners! In Oz most Reform rabbis are full-bloodied Zionists, although one or two imports from the UK are a tad sus!

  3. Israelinurse, kol hakavod on your excellent debunking of Cooper’s nasty article. And I am extremely relieved that you did the dirty work so that I don’t have to. That includes diving into his septic blog and researching his past vitriolic articles.

    I must admit when I read his item yesterday I was mystified that he could still lower himself to be known as a Jew. He seems to have no Jewish soul and no Jewish sympathy.

  4. Why can’t Anglo-Jews just be human beings? Well disposed to Egyptians’ revolution but apprehensive, given the Arab street’s past form, about its possible consequences?

    Why can’t they just live in the real world, instead of Cooper’s never never land?

  5. ‘“Is it because this begrudging Jewish response has been dictated not by a recognition of the power of the human spirit to overcome oppression, but by fear?”’

    What a pig.

    Understandable Israeli and Jewish concerns = inability to recognise the power of Egyptians’ spirits?

    How is this different from the conventional National and International Socialist bile that narrow Jewish concerns are necessarily inimicable to the interests of their fellow human beings?

    Is it either/or? Can Cooper the intellectual not hold two ideas in his head at the same time?

    How generous was the spirit of the Arab Masses to the native Egyptian Jews?

    What a jerk, spewing out more fodder for the indigenous anti-semites of CIF.

  6. Sian, why are you generalising from the activities of these fools, who would do anything to be acceptable to Israel-haters, onto all Anglo-Jewry?

    Many Jews in the UK support Israel but don’t necessarily agree with all its policies, but they are sure enough of themselves as people not to fall into the traps set for them by haters, unlike the Howard Coopers of this world. He’s a disgrace to Judaism, and a living example of what happens when “liberalism” is applied without intelligence.

    With him for a friend, Jews don’t need enemies.

  7. ‘Sian, why are you generalising from the activities of these fools, who would do anything to be acceptable to Israel-haters, onto all Anglo-Jewry?’

    Why aren’t you reading what I write?

    Twat.

  8. With the new Egyptian government waving Iranian warships thru the Suez Canal it won’t be just Israelis who’ll be feeling uneasy.

  9. Sian, pardon me, but your poverty of language is showing and it’s embarrassing.

    Here’s some free advice – I read what you wrote and there were no qualifiers before “Anglo-Jews” – to spell it out, you didn’t make yourself clear did you?

    But I am glad that we seem to agree that this Rabbi is a grade A schmuck.

    Geary, very true. It’s easy enough to talk about “democracy” and I believe that all are entitled to it, but so far I fail to see HOW it will come to pass from such chaos and unless those who want it are supported. So far I can’t envisage that happening.

  10. Cooper is a pompous windbag and an utter moron. He lacks the brain power to understand the situation of Israelis, constantly under attack by their genocidal neighbours.
    What a pathetic prick.

  11. “But the spectre of Israel once again surrounded by implacable annihilatory enemies haunts the Jewish imagination. It’s as if fear is soldered to our soul.”

    What part of the refrain, “That not just one alone, but in every generation they arise upon us to do us for”, which every Jew sings at Passover, does the esteemed rabbi fail to understand? Or is his Passover one of those where it is optional for the bread to be unleavened but mandatory for the Haggadah to be all about the trendy Lefty cause du jour?

  12. ‘Sian, pardon me, but your poverty of language is showing and it’s embarrassing.’

    Please, feel free to go fuck yourself.

  13. “Can Cooper the intellectual not hold two ideas in his head at the same time?”

    For that, you need at least 2 distinct brain cells.

  14. Ian McEwan accepting Jerusalem Prize:

    The British author Ian McEwan launched an eloquent attack on Israeli government policies in his speech accepting the Jerusalem prize for literature, saying “a great and self-evident injustice hangs in the air”.
    Before an audience that included Israel’s president, Shimon Peres, culture minister, Limor Livnat, and Jerusalem mayor, Nir Barkat, McEwan spoke of the nihilism on both sides of the conflict.
    Addressing his remarks at the opening ceremony of Jerusalem’s international book fair to “Israeli and Palestinian citizens of this beautiful city”, the novelist said: “Hamas has embraced the nihilism of the suicide bomber, of rockets fired blindly into towns, and the nihilism of the extinctionist policy towards Israel.”
    But it was also nihilism that fired a rocket at the home of the Gazan doctor, Izzeldin Abuelaish, killing three of his daughters and a niece during the Gazan war. “And it is nihilism to make a long-term prison camp of the Gaza Strip. Nihilism has unleashed a tsunami of concrete across the occupied territories.”
    The author referred to “continued evictions and relentless purchases of Palestinian homes in East Jerusalem, the process of the right of return granted to Jews but not to Arabs, the so-called facts on the ground of hardening concrete over the future, over future generations of Palestinian and Israeli children who will inherit the conflict and find it even more difficult to resolve than it is today.”
    He called for an end to settlements and encroachments on Palestinian land.
    Despite his stinging criticisms, to which his audience listened in silence, McEwan said he was “deeply, deeply touched to be awarded this honour that recognises writing which promotes the idea of the freedom of the individual in society”.
    He said that since his decision to come to Israel to accept the prize, “my time has not exactly been peaceful” – referring to demands “with varying degrees of civility” for him to boycott the ceremony.
    Jerusalem, he said, was “the most intense place I have ever set foot in”.
    In the UK, he said, novelists were free to choose how much to write about politics. “Here, for both Israeli and Palestinian novelists, ‘the situation’ is always there … It’s a creative struggle to address it and a creative struggle to ignore it.”
    The idea of the freedom of the individual “sits a little awkwardly” with the situation in Jerusalem, McEwan said. He drew comparisons with the UK, saying: “We may have our homeless but we do have our homeland. We are neither threatened by hostile neighbours nor have we been displaced.”
    He referred to the Shoah, or Holocaust, as “that industrialised cruelty which will remain always the ultimate measure of human depravity, of how far we can fall, and acknowledged “the precious tradition of the democracy of ideas in Israel”.
    He devoted much of his speech to the nature of the novel which, he said, “has become our best and most sensitive means of exploring the freedom of the individual, and such explorations often depict what happens when that freedom is denied”.
    He singled out three celebrated Israeli authors – Amos Oz, AB Yehoshua and David Grossman – as “writers who love their country, and made sacrifices for it and have been troubled by the directions it has taken”.
    They had opposed the settlements, he said, and had become the country’s “conscience, memory and above all hope”.
    In recent years these three writers had felt “the times turning against their hopes”, he said.
    The question, said McEwan, was Lenin’s: what is to be done? Israel, he said, needed to harness the creativity of its writers, artists and scientists, and not “retreat to a bunker mentality”.
    “The opposite of nihilism is creativity. The mood for change, the hunger for individual freedom that is spreading through the Middle East is an opportunity more than it is a threat.”
    The prize was presented by Jerusalem’s mayor, Nir Barkat, who has enthusiastically backed Jewish settlements in Arab areas of the city. Jerusalem, he said, was “open to everyone to express themselves in a free way”. McEwan’s writing promoted the “same tolerance as we promote here in Jerusalem,” he said.
    The author said he was donating his $10,000 (£6,155) prize to Combatants for Peace, an organisation of former Israeli soldiers and former Palestinian fighters.

    I know all this is hard to hear. But it’s not anti-semitic – or even anti-Israeli. It’s working for peace and there are many different views as to how that might be achieved.

  15. “But it’s not anti-semitic – or even anti-Israeli. “</i

    It is indeed anti-Semitic. The officals present should have revoked the prize & thrown him into the street and out of the country.

  16. For ‘naiveté’, I would read profound ignorance and stupidity.
    And since he is attacking Jews for defending themselves and for living in their own homeland, also ‘Jew-hatred’, of the condescending kind that believes it is the proper place of Jews to be the victim and accept this as the natural order.

    Attacking Jews for defending themselves is not ‘working for peace': it is antisemitism.

    I agree: this disgusting little man should have been thrown out on his ear.

  17. Sian at 2.55pm – as I said above, your poverty of language – because of lack of education or personal insight or originality of thought? – is showing.

    Try another tack, like coming back and debating like a grown up. (Hint: Look up “debate” in a dictionary if you have one. Note that it may involve being disagreed with).

  18. When Rabbi Cooper pontificates about the misdemeanors of the Jewish State from the safety and comfort of suburban Finchley, he simply plays into the hands of Israel’s enemies. Even if I do not always agree with David Grossman, his words nevertheless bear an authenticity that Rabbi Cooper’s never will. Anyone who paints the Israel/Palestinian conflict in black and white terms just doesn’t understand what is going on here.

  19. Possibly this is not the right place for a ‘dialogue’ between differing views as to how Israel may best proceed since it seems to reflect only one viewpoint and uses intemperate language.

    But, it is important that we do develop communication channels between Jews – and others – who recognise Israel’s right to exist but differ on what may best safeguard that right in the immediate and longer term future.

    What Rabbi Cooper suggests is the need to make a pause – however difficult it is to do – between the celebration and joy on behalf of those who are rising up against tyrants and the understandable concern of what the future might carry.

    He calls our lack of celebration ‘bad faith, ‘ which ‘reneges on the spiritual vision of our Judaic heritage.’ This is the rabbi speaking, in the tradition of the prophets, who were anathema to the people because their voice was so hard to hear.

    In the most striking phrase, Rabbi Cooper asks whether we, the Jewish people, carry fear (perhaps understandably) ‘soldered to the soul.’ Pray that this is not so, for nothing would be more damaging to our future.

    This is not pontificating or speaking in black and white terms. It is an expression of sadness and concern. How can we justify banning Pinnochio and Harry Potter coming in to Israel, as Ha’aretz reports http://j.mp/dNCTBk

    If we cannot listen to one another and speak together, as Jews, how much less are we able to expect that we will be able to communicate with those who are not? And yet we are increasingly part of ‘one world,’ as Judaism always taught, facing the same problems and needs.

    Pray for the peace of Jerusalem because on her peace our peace depends.

  20. JeffreyNewman: I was bemused by reading what you wrote here “ How can we justify banning Pinnochio and Harry Potter coming in to Israel, as Ha’aretz reports http://j.mp/dNCTBk” until I read the article myself, finding out the more innocent truth.

    Why is it that draft bills strike terror to the hearts of the naive? Most of them are attempts at satisfying the constituency of the MK who proposed them and have no chance of being passed into law, just like this one that deals not with banning children’s books – but with banning books published in two Arab states. I agree that the banning of books is reprehensible, just as the Jordanians wouldn’t allow us to translate a book written by their queen into Hebrew and just as the Egyptian ‘culture minister’ wished to burn all Hebrew books in their libraries. I do hope that his plan was foiled before the parliament was sacked.

  21. Rabbi Jeffrey Newman is also a leading supporter of jfjfp. To get a real sense of what they are about I suggest you have a look at this:

    http://jfjfp.com/

    —————-

    “If we cannot listen to one another and speak together, as Jews, how much less are we able to expect that we will be able to communicate with those who are not?”

    If you really do want other Jews (the vast majority who do not support you) to listen to you, I suggest that you dispense with the arrogance, the hypocrisy and the language and methods of the anti-Semite.

  22. Jeffrey Newman – It will be Israelis who will decide ‘how Israel will proceed’. Those same Israelis who work here, pay taxes, send their children to the army and live every hour under the shadow of missiles from north and south. In other words – the people who have a vote here because they are citizens of this state.

    We are the ones who are familiar with the real situation on the ground and we are the ones who will bear the consequences of our decisions for better or for worse.

    If others wish to be a part of the decision process, they are very welcome to come and live here as full citizens with all the rights and obligations.

    There is no authority without responsibility, and those who decline to take that responsibility upon themselves should not expect others to accept their authority, even if they happen to bear the title of Rabbi.

    I am not a religious person, let alone a Rabbi, but in my Judaism ‘pikuah nefesh’ takes precedent over all other mitzvot or texts.

    An organisation such as ‘Jews for Justice for Palestinians’ which recently sent a boat to break the naval blockade on Gaza which prevents the arming of a terrorist group would appear to have no concern whatsoever for the lives of Israeli children in Sderot and the surrounding area.

    How that is compatible with religious belief is beyond me. In fact I have long considered that JfJfP showed its true colours with the choosing of its name.

    What objection does your little grouplet have to justice for Israelis as well as Palestinians?

  23. Ah, but IsraeliNurse – justice for Israelis is not a trendy cause. Vacuous nonentities such as JfJfP couldn’t care less about justice (either for Israelis OR for the so-called ‘Palestinians’). All they are interested in is their inflated egos, and how their propaganda will make them look so very, very important in the pretentious world of the self-righteous.

  24. jeffreynewman,

    “But, it is important that we do develop communication channels between Jews … If we cannot listen to one another and speak together, as Jews,…”

    You’ve got a nerve. Your narrative, that of the Left, has maintained an unrelenting grip on the discourse for something like forty years. A member of the land-faithful Jewish Zionist Right (“Settlers,” in revisionist parlance; revisionist because it posits the Jews as invaders on what is actually their own land) wouldn’t have a snowball’s chance in hell of voicing his ideas on your forums (including nearly the entire Mainstream Media), because your side is adamant that “racists” shouldn’t be allowed to speak. Yet you are the one who complains of shutting down the discussion?!

  25. Thanks to those who have contributed.

    What can I say? I am a member of jfjp – because most Jews will quite properly stand up for our rights but we are also have a responsibility to look out for the rights of others. Israel has done this when it was able to (e.g. training schemes for irrigation in Africa.) The Palestinians are nearer to home and we have a much greater responsibility as well as a need to look after their interests as the best means of ensuring our own.

    Of course we disagree, and strongly, about ‘the land-faithful Jewish Zionist Right,’ even if only on the principle, as IsraeliNurse says of pikuach nefesh – what is the best safeguard for Israel for the future?

    Much more troubling, however, are these internal squabbles. The Talmud says, Jerusalem was destroyed because of such dissension. How can we find a shared basis when we disagree so strongly?

    It is never difficult to dismiss those who disagree by categorising them with a pejorative phrase (naive, self-hating, egoistic and so on.) Nor is it difficult to uphold one’s viewpoint when everyone agrees which is why I wonder whether a more balanced opportunity for discussion exists?

    But I am truly grateful for this one.

  26. “The Palestinians are nearer to home and we have a much greater responsibility as well as a need to look after their interests as the best means of ensuring our own.”

    What if their interests are in fact only one interest, and that interest is the taking away of the Jews’ one and only state in the world? Have you ever given thought to that idea?

    “Much more troubling, however, are these internal squabbles. The Talmud says, Jerusalem was destroyed because of such dissension.”

    The internecine hatred that destroyed Jerusalem was gratuitous hatred, hatred that is petty and undeserved. Examples of such gratuitous wrangling is the pitting of racial groups against one another in the U.S.A. today–people who have no real reason to be at enmity (especially not after the election of an African-American president, showing conclusively white racism in America to be history), but are inflamed for the purpose of political gain by unscrupulous politicians.

    I hate the local Arabs because they want me either out of my country or dead; and I hate groups like JFJFP because, knowingly or not, they aid and abet that very cause. These are very real and justified reasons. You can tell me my reasons are wrong, but, assuming they’re right, you can’t say my hatred is gratuitous.

  27. A word of advice, Newman: pomposity and using big words are no substitute for knowing the facts, nor for engaging your brain.

    The Arabs want to annihilate Israel: they say so loud and clear, their television stations broadcast Nazi programmes that brainwash children to be murderers of Jews.

    Pretending there is symmetry between the victims, the Jews of Israel, and the aggressors, their would be genocidal annihilators, is the sort of propaganda that only knaves and fools spout: which of them best describes you and your vile grouplet?

    “I hate the local Arabs because they want me either out of my country or dead; and I hate groups like JFJFP because, knowingly or not, they aid and abet that very cause”

    Well said.

  28. “but we are also have a responsibility to look out for the rights of others.”

    Not when you do it in a way that promotes blood libels, deliberately deligitimizes the Jewish state and prevents the parents of Sderot from defending their children.

    “How can we find a shared basis when we disagree so strongly?”

    There is no shared basis any more than there should have been with Rumkowski when he ordered Jewish women to give up their children.

    ———-

    Newman writes in a previous post:

    “This is the rabbi speaking, in the tradition of the prophets, who were anathema to the people because their voice was so hard to hear.”

    In August 2006, Jostein Gaarder, wrote an infamous anti-Semitic piece in Aftenposten:

    God’s chosen people

    [Extracts]

    “There is no turning back. It is time to learn a new lesson: We do no longer recognize the state of Israel.”

    “May spirit and word sweep away the apartheid walls of Israel. The state of Israel does not exist. It is now without defense, without skin. May the world therefore have mercy on the civilian population. For it is not civilian individuals at whom our doomsaying is directed.”

    “We do not believe in the notion of God’s chosen people. We laugh at this people’s fancies and weep over its misdeeds. To act as God’s chosen people is not only stupid and arrogant, but a crime against humanity. We call it racism.”

    “We do not recognize the state of Israel. Not today, not as of this writing, not in the hour of grief and wrath. If the entire Israeli nation should fall to its own devices and parts of the population have to flee the occupied areas into another diaspora, then we say: May the surroundings stay calm and show them mercy. It is forever a crime without mitigation to lay hand on refugees and stateless people.”

    http://www.israelwhat.com/2006/08/30/jostein-gaarder/

    At the time it was suggested that Gaarder’s piece was also written in the style of a biblical prophecy. You know, I for one am not surprised that Reform Judaism and hardcore Norwegian anti-Semitism have ended up in the same place. A plague on both your houses.

  29. Jeffrey Newman – not all Jews are affluent North Londoners and that is precisely the ‘missing link’ which so many of those acting (unrequested, I may add) on behalf of the Palestinians/ Israeli conscience forget.

    I have worked extensively with new immigrants from Ethiopia when they first arrived here (in a terrible physical and mental state), from the former USSR (often likewise), from Cochin, from North Africa. I have worked in the poor development towns and the run-down neighbourhoods of others.

    Those people have an entirely different Jewish experience to either yours or mine. Many of them do not have the resources available to be able to speak for themselves. More importantly, unlike yourself (and I) – they have nowhere to ‘go back to’.

    That is the guiding light as far as I am concerned in this issue. Those are the people who need my help first and foremost.

  30. “that is precisely the ‘missing link’ which so many of those acting (unrequested, I may add) on behalf of the Palestinians/ Israeli conscience forget.”

    They don’t forget – they deliberately ignore them (although, admittedly, some of them may be too ignorant to know of their existence; smug, well-off, as-a-Jew North London idiots probably fall into this category). Poor Israeli Jews are not a trendy cause – they are seen by as-a-Jews as part of the Little Satan Israel.

  31. Jeffrey Newman, I wouldn’t be too quick to wear your membership of JfJfP as some sort of badge of honour – [aren’t they the ones who (rightly, I believe) slung out one of their founder members, one Deborah Fink, who was too off the wall even for them?] I hear that Fink is now making a thoroughgoing nuisance of herself in the Green Party, which deserves her as much as she them.

    You can’t get justice for Palestinians by being blind to what their governments want for the Jews in the region.

    Can you name me some Arab/Muslim leaders in the Middle East who are willing to stand up publicly for Israeli/Jewish rights as you advocate all Jews to stand up for Muslim rights? Thought not.. Hoi Palloi’s post above says it all really. Your incapability to see this situation for what it really is almost beggars belief (“almost” because I have met your kind before and it seems to me that nothing short of personal experience of Jew-directed Islamist hatred can snap them out of their idiocy).

    Of course there will always be squabbles within political/religious groups and Jews are no different. Quote the Talmud all you like, but nowhere in it is there any mention of Jews taking leave of their collective senses and offering themselves as too-trusting hostages to fortune in the light of their previous experiences.

    Are you really such a fool or so arrogant as to believe that just because you think a thing then it must be true? You yourself may be an excellent chap and jolly good company at chatterati dinner parties, but when push comes to shove, all your liberalism will not prevent Islamists attacking you because you are a Jew and whether you support Israel or not! They would not pause to wonder whether you are well-disposed towards them before they beat you up, as happened to the RE teacher in East London who had the temerity to teach comparative religion to Muslim girls in his school – what would matter to them is that they were seen to be attacking your Jewishness.

    People with views like yours are UK Jews’ Achilles heel. Their complete lack of contact with reality is dangerous to us all.

  32. “I hear that Fink is now making a thoroughgoing nuisance of herself in the Green Party, which deserves her as much as she them”

    Indeed: one is as vile as the other.

  33. There’s not only difference of opinion here but also mud-slinging, anger and even hatred, directed not only at Arabs but also at me. Surely, the best tactic is to ignore and despise me? Certainly with language like this, you won’t help me to change my mind.

    Of course, I recognise the truth of some of the statements here but there are also false and dangerous generalizations which make the situation far worse.

    Finally, I did not say Howard Cooper was a prophet but that he was speaking in the prophetic tradition. If you want to see more about this, I have just written a blog http://bit.ly/e4urFF

  34. jeffrey, You still don’t get it. Do you have a learning disability?

    You are not bothered by the censorship at the ironicly named “CiF – Comment is Free”?

    The venom at Der Guardian against Jews and Israel is OK with you and your comrades?

    You are not bothered by calls for genocide by the islamofascist regime or iran?

    What happened to your soul?

  35. More pompous nonsense from the toxic Newman.

    “there are also false and dangerous generalizations which make the situation far worse”

    Indeed. Your rants are chock-full of them.

    Why shouldn’t we hate you, you ridiculous little man? You are giving aid and succour to the genocial enemies of our nation.

  36. Well, I waited till today. But no pacifist, be Jewish or not, had whispered one single word about Qaddafi, whose rule, hopefully, is going to finish. Not that I remember a single word from any of the enlightened ones, when the murderous suppression of Libyan Jewry was taking place. And, to be honest, neither I heard a word when no Jew were left in Lybia, and all their possession stolen -after having been declared “Zionist”. It is as if all the centuries of continuous Jewish presence in Libya were less relevant than the two years required by the UNRWA to make a Palestinian refugee. Of course, of course: those rude mizrahim, those primitives. They are not worth of any prophetic rage in their defense; they are just bloody right-wing Likud supporters.
    Naive that I am, I still wonder why the leader of the first Arab Country to sign a peace treaty with Israel is a Pharao, while the father of Saif al Islam Qaddafi, PhD, had been a sort of apple in the eye for all the third-worldists and the like. And apparently still is. Maybe, just maybe, had it to do with the generous sponsorship of that family to UK Universities? Which is something Mubarak was not good at.
    So, just in case you are willing to acquire a sort of academic respectability, blame Mubarak, and keep silent about Qaddafy. His uniform, after all, reminded us that he were the Cohen Gadol of the UN – Human Rights Commission. What an hero. And not forget that he had restored a synagogue.

  37. Pingback: BEYOND BELIEF: POLITICAL PROPAGANDA IN THE ANGLICAN CHURCH | RUTHFULLY YOURS

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