Extremists fail to disrupt ‘Closer To Israel 65′ in London’s Trafalgar Square.

Cross posted by London-based blogger Richard Millett

A group of 30 extremists failed to dampen spirits as some 3,000 Jewish and non-Jewish pro-Israel supporters came out to show their support and appreciation for the Jewish state at the Closer to Israel 65 event in London’s Trafalgar Square today. Even the sun finally shone!

The 30 extremists were from the Islamic Human Rights Commission (IHRC), the tiny Jewish religious sect the Neturei Karta, the Palestine Solidarity Campaign and Jews For Justice For Palestinians.

A favourite racist chant of those from the IHRC was “Judaism yes, Zionism no, the State of Israel must Go”. How awfully nice of Islamic Human Rights Commission members to allow Judaism to be practiced. Now, all one needs to know is how much tax British Jews must pay to be allowed to continue practicing their Judaism.

Here are some IHRC members allowing Jews to practice Judaism in the UK in 2013. We can only thank them:

The hate of the extremists was drowned out by the words of Chief Rabbi Lord Sacks who declared that if the Jewish people had to choose between world criticism of or sympathy for Israel they would choose world criticism rather than be homeless and defenceless with the sympathy of the world:

Here are the photos of the day with some commentary. First, the good people:

The coolest person at Closer To Israel 65. Dig the glasses.

The coolest person at Closer To Israel 65. Dig the glasses.

A Spurs "Yiddo" at CTI65. It's not racist, it's an affectionate nickname!

A Spurs “Yiddo” at CTI65. It’s not racist, it’s an affectionate nickname!

Harif's lovely Michelle Huberman doing what she does best at CTI65. Bellydance!

Harif’s lovely Michelle Huberman doing what she does best at CTI65. Bellydance!

The brilliant and handsome Kasim Hafeez at CTI65.

The brilliant and handsome Kasim Hafeez at CTI65.

Yours truly and superb political commentator and author Carol Could at CTI65.

Yours truly and superb political commentator and author Carol Gould at CTI65.

This cool lady was spotted just dancing to the extremists' racist chanting.

This cool lady was spotted just dancing to the extremists’ racist chanting.

A packed and sunny Trafalgar Square for CTI65 listening to the Chief Rabbi.

A packed and sunny Trafalgar Square for CTI65 listening to the Chief Rabbi.

Taking a break from CTI65 to face down the extremists.

Taking a break from CTI65 to face down the extremists.

Israel supporters come face to face with extremism on the streets of London.

Israel supporters come face to face with extremism on the streets of London.

An Israel supporter defiant in the face of hate and lies.

An Israel supporter defiant in the face of hate and lies.

The extremists:

Praying for the Jewish people to experience more bloodshed just because Israel wasn't directly created by the Messiah?

Praying for the Jewish people to experience more bloodshed just because Israel wasn’t directly created by the Messiah?

I agree with this placard. But the Palestinian children are being murdered by the Hamas government.

I agree with this placard. But the Palestinian children are being murdered by the Hamas government.

As I was saying this Palestinian father's grief (see placard) was finally proven by the UN to have been caused by a stray Hamas rocket that killed his young son.

As I was saying this Palestinian father’s grief (see placard) was finally proven by the UN to have been caused by a stray Hamas rocket that killed his young son.

I wonder if this lady is standing up against real evil currently taking place in Syria.

I wonder if this lady is standing up against real evil currently taking place in Syria.

I actually felt sorry for this poor kid. He looks unhappy being pushed to do the vile bidding of his elders.

I actually felt sorry for this poor kid. He looks unhappy being pushed to do the vile bidding of his elders.

Thanks for coming. I hope you all managed to fit into the minivan for the trip home.

Thanks for coming. I hope you all managed to fit into the minivan for the trip home.

An anti-Israel agitator pointing out yours truly to a new recruit.

An anti-Israel agitator pointing out yours truly to a new recruit.

Yes! We've also had enough of Jews For Justice For Palestinians!

Yes! We’ve also had enough of Jews For Justice For Palestinians!

British Zionists rock Wembley Arena for Israel’s 65th!

Cross posted by Richard Millett

Ishtar (centre), "Chico" and Alabina at Wembley Arena on Tuesday night.

Ishtar (centre), “Chico” and Alabina at Wembley Arena on Tuesday night.

6,000 British Zionists laughed and danced disgracefully at London’s Wembley Arena on Tuesday night as the Zionist Federation put on an evening of comedy and music to celebrate Israel’s 65th birthday.

Stacey Solomon sang, Britain’s Got Talent winners Spelbound dazzled with musical gymnastics, Israeli star Ivri Lider played piano and Mark Maier made everyone laugh with his descriptions of strange Jewish behaviour, for example pensioner Bernie with his bad back “going on security” in synagogue which is hardly going to thwart an attack from Al Qaida.

Finally, Israeli star Ishtar lifted the roof when she joined forces with Gipsy Kings co-founder “Chico” and with Alabina to get the Arena pumping to Arabic and Spanish music, including Gipsy Kings hits Bamboleo and Volare which had them all dancing disgracefully in the aisles.

Some 30 anti-Israel activists protested outside with extremist Jewish sect Neturei Karta taunting concert goers about the Holocaust. Typically, I was quietly taking photos before being moved on by the police under threat of arrest for breaching the peace after Massoud Shadjareh, chair of Islamic Human Rights Commission, complained that I was “provoking them”. Here he is in action:


More photos from the evening inside and outside Wembley Arena:

Brainwashed to hate.

Brainwashed to hate.

Stacey Solomon singing for Israel's 65th.

Stacey Solomon singing for Israel’s 65th.

But she'll be back next year for Israel's 66th.

But she’ll be back next year for Israel’s 66th.

Mark Maier humourously describing strange Jewish behaviour.

Mark Maier humourously describing strange Jewish behaviour.

At least they didn't take your Israel-developed IPhone.

At least they didn’t take your Israel-developed IPhone.

Ivri Lider charming them inside Wembley Arena.

Ivri Lider charming them inside Wembley Arena.

Hug a hoodie anyone?

Hug a hoodie anyone?

Gymnastic troupe Spelbound perform for Israel's 65th.

Gymnastic troupe Spelbound perform for Israel’s 65th.

Has this woman really got nothing better to do?

Has this woman really got nothing better to do?

Ishtar with Jimmy.

Ishtar with Jimmy.

Good luck with that. See you next year.

Good luck with that. See you next year.

Vanessa Feltz dressed down inside Wembley Arena.

Vanessa Feltz dressed down inside Wembley Arena.

Feeding off each other's hate.

Feeding off each other’s hate.



Taught to hate.

Taught to hate. (Also, note the Misharawi photo on the poster to the right: I guess he didn’t read that the boy was in fact killed by a Palestinian Rocket.)

Youth Aliyah Music Ensemble kicking off the evening of celebration

Youth Aliyah Music Ensemble kicking off the evening of celebration

Massoud Shadjareh who complained to police that I was "provoking them".

Massoud Shadjareh who complained to police that I was “provoking them”.

Vanessa watches spoonbender Uri Geller.

Vanessa watches spoonbender Uri Geller.

A charming lot (not).

A charming lot (not).

Genocide Abuse Day at the IHRC

Cross posted by Mark Gardner at the blog of the CST

With Holocaust Memorial Day (27th January) fast approaching, so does its annual bastardisation by our local pro-Iranian and pro-Hizbollah fans, the Islamic Human Rights Commission.

(See previous CST blog for IHRC’s role in London’s annual version of the Iranian-inspired anti-Israel hate festival, Quds Day, replete with Hizbollah assault rifle flags.)

Unlike the Iranian regime and its Press TV outlet, the Islamic Human Rights Commission is not so stupid or crass as to engage in outright denial that the Holocaust ever happened, but the group is still stuck between a rock and a hard place: how to acknowledge the reality of the Holocaust, without lending legitimacy to the most basic and blatant of arguments in favour of Zionism?

The far left have tackled this problem by keeping Jewish victimhood centre stage, whilst alleging that Zionists wanted the Holocaust and/or actually colluded with the Nazis to bring it about. They turn the moral tables on Zionism, by claiming that Zionists needed and desired and worked towards dead Jews in order to gain global sympathy for their enterprise.

The pro-Iranian IHRC, however, prefer the tactic of declaring a Genocide Memorial Day. This year it is subtitled  “Remembering Man’s Inhumanity to Man” and will be held on 20th January. The day’s title enables the IHRC to gently subsume the genocide of European Jewry under the sheer scale of man’s inhumanity to man. Challenge this as sophistry and you are forced into a somewhat nauseating comparative study in human suffering.

As a bonus ball, IHRC also get to define and blur the meanings of the word “genocide” and the phrase “man’s inhumanity to man”. So, they include Palestinian suffering and seamlessly move Palestinians and Israelis onto the same moral planes as Jews and Nazis.

In 2011, CST blog detailed that year’s IHRC Genocide Memorial Day calendar. For brevity, here are four of the entries:

January – Gaza: During the Israeli assault on Gaza during the 22 Day war (2008 – 09), 1,434 Palestinians were killed of which 288 were children and 181 were women. A further 5,303 Palestinians were injured in the assault, including 1,606 children and 828 women.

April – Auschwitz: Estimates of numbers of Roma and Sinti people killed by the Nazis in the second world war range from 200,000 to 500,000.

October – Treblinka: The Treblinka concentration camp was set up by the Nazis in Occupied Poland. Between July 1942 and October 1943, 800,000 people were killed there, the majority of whom were Jewish, and a substantial number of whom were Roma.

November – Palestine: The Nakba (The Catastrophe) refers to the events of 1948 when Israel was created. That year saw the mass deportation of a million Palestinians from their cities and villages, massacres of civilians, and the razing to the ground of hundreds of Palestinian villages.

Note how the Gaza and Palestine entries balance those of Treblinka and Auschwitz. Note how Treblinka mentions Jews and Roma, whilst Auschwitz mentions Roma and not Jews. Note how Treblinka seeks to play up the Roma element, despite the overwhelming majority of its victims having been Jewish. (I write this to show the IHRC’s underhand ghastliness, not to diminish the dreadful suffering of Roma and Sinti.) Note how there is no actual mention of the Holocaust, nor of gas chambers. The spin is both subtle and repugnant.

This year, to mark Genocide Memorial Week 2013, we have a cutesy little animation video on the IHRC website. (It can be viewed here, but does not need to be.)

The animation shows an adorable child holding a red balloon. The child’s ethnicity and religion gradually changes (including Jewish and Muslim). The child is simply drawn in a charming and naive style, walking along without a care in the world to the tune of a happy background jingle. At the foot of the animation runs a series of children’s names that begins with “Ann Frank (Germany)”. This is followed by “Renate Wolff (Germany)” and “Agnes Ringwald (Hungary)”, before listing one Kurd, two Guatemalans, two Japanese and two Australians, then ending with “Mu’tassim – Muhammad Ali Samour (Gaza)”.

The name “Ann Frank (Germany)” (sic) is, of course, very well-known. It immediately establishes for the viewer what the other names are all about. Unavoidably, your awareness is heightened that you do not actually recognise most, or perhaps any, of the other names scrolling along the screen. This causes you to pay greater attention to them. You cannot help asking yourself, ‘why don’t I know these other names and what tragedies have they suffered?’. (In actuality, not all of those listed were actually murdered in genocides and some of them are still alive. Again, this is to be forced into a comparative study of human suffering.)

The names change as the animated child also changes. As the words “Muhammad Ali Samour (Gaza)” appear, so the screen explodes blood-red and the music changes to gunfire. The words “Sabra & Shatilla” are now stamped on the blood-red background, with the figure 3,500. Next, there is “Srebrenica 8,000”, then “Nazi Holocaust 11,000,000”.

So this year, the IHRC did actually mention three Jewish child victims of the Holocaust by name and they did draw a sweet picture of a boy in a kippah. The Nazis’ six million Jewish victims are, however, conveniently subsumed within the larger figure of eleven million victims. Why commemorate the ethnocentric six million total, when you can commemorate the universalist eleven million total? (Whether this eleven million figure is even accurate is another, not unrelated, matter. See for example here.)

In all, 16 events and death tolls appear. Having begun with “Sabra & Shatilla 3,500″, the list ends with “Gaza 2009 over 1,000”. The opening and closing sections are the only ones that relate to Palestinians. It is their victimhood that literally brackets all of the other entries: this is subtle stuff, but it is highly effective and, as with the 2011 calendar, it moves Palestinian suffering centre stage and places it on an equal, or even higher plane, than that of Jewish suffering. The message is as subtle as it is unmistakable; and the IHRC’s motivations for Genocide Memorial Day are shown up for being not quite as universalist as they would have you believe.       

The Iranian regime (and indeed the far left) could learn a great deal from this sleight of hand. Will the IHRC advise them to follow suit?

Finally, it should be noted that when searching “Genocide Memorial Day” on Google,the top result is a Wikipedia entry saying that this is a national holiday in Armenia. Curiously neither this, nor any Armenian children, feature in the IHRC’s video.

Richard Millett’s ‘Al Quds Day’ Report: Hezbollah marches through London again

Cross posted by Richard Millett

At Al Quds Day in London today.

Remember during the Olympics when Britain celebrated how multicultural we are and how we accept people of all cultures and races? Well, it seems, the party is already over.

Britain’s Jews are made to feel especially uncomfortable. Today, yet again, Hezbollah supporters marched through the streets of London for the Khomeini inspired Al Quds Day. Instead of congregating in Trafalgar Square like last year, they assembled outside the American Embassy.

Hezbollah has been involved in a worldwide campaign to murder as many Jews as possible. It started in Argentina in the early 1990s when both the Israeli consulate and a Jewish community centre were bombed by Hezbollah leaving hundreds of Jews and non-Jews dead and disabled. And recently in Bulgaria Hezbollah blew up a bus full of young Israeli tourists leaving many dead and crippled.

This is all fully in line with Hassan Nasrallah’s statements that Jews are descended from pigs and apes and if the world’s Jews gathered in Israel it would save Hezbollah the effort of going after them worldwide.

Last year Hezbollah activists held up signs proclaiming “Death to Israel”, “Israel Your Days Are Numbered” and “For there to be peace Israel must be destroyed”. Today the disingenuously named Islamic Human Rights Commission, a registered charity, was allowed to repeat the exercise.

And this year the march and rally were advertised on the back of some 400 London buses!

I wasn’t there for very long today. Once again I was quietly trying to film proceedings. No one recognised me until an anti-Ahava activist tipped off stewards from the Islamic Human Rights Commission who jostled me and complained to the police who, in turn, ushered me away.

After the assembled crowd was urged to chant “Zionism must go” and “From The River to the Sea Palestine Will be Free” I saw both Reverend Stephen Sizer and Labour MP Jeremy Corbyn address it.

Leaflets sponsored by INMINDS.co.uk were handed out. They read, inter alia, ”The world ended Nazism and Apartheid, isn’t it time to end the suffering of the Palestinians?” and “Israeli soldiers of the Givati Brigade ordered around 100 people in to the Wa’el Samouni house at gunpoint. They then bombed the house killing 29 people. They then denied emergency crews access to the house for four days, shooting at ambulance drivers if they approached the house. In case anyone mistook the intent of the Givati in this crime, they left a message on one of the remaining walls of the house, daubed in Hebrew it read ‘The Only good Arab is a Dead Arab.’”

One has to ask why does Britain rightly ban groups like Muslims Against Crusades for causing public outrage but not Hezbollah which is actively attempting to murder Jews worldwide. Are Britain’s Jews deemed so dispensable?

I think we know the answer by now.

Al Quds Day London 2012. So much for “multi-cultural Britain”.

Someone’s in love with Hezbollah.

The heavies.

Giving me the evils.

More evils.

Racism descends on a sunny London.

The Green Party?

Neturei Karta at their usual pre-Shabbat hate-fest.

“Daddy, daddy can we go to another hate-fest today?”

Neturei Karta and Hezbollah; the perfect fit?

Islamic Human Rights Commission & Al Quds Day: Tip of the UK’s Iranian support network iceberg


In 1979 the Iranian regime, newly under the control of Ayatollah Khomeini, initiated the annual marking of ‘Al Quds (Jerusalem) Day’ on the third Friday of the month of Ramadan as a means of expressing the support of Iran and the Arab-Muslim world for the Palestinian ’cause’ and the ‘liberation’ of Jerusalem. The original declaration includes these words: 

“Israel, the enemy of mankind, the enemy of humanity, which is creating disturbances every day and is attacking our brothers…, must realise that its masters are no longer accepted in the world and must retreat. They must give up their ambitious designs, their hands must be severed from all the Islamic countries and their agents in these countries must step down.

Quds Day is the day for announcing such things, for announcing such things to the satans who want to push the Islamic nations aside and bring the superpowers into the arena.

Quds Day is the day to dash their hopes and warn them that those days are gone.”

Since then, these events – which are inevitably a stage for anti-Israel and anti-Western incitement – have taken place annually in many locations all over the world, including the United Kingdom, where they are organised primarily by the Islamic Human Rights Commission. This year’s event will take place on August 17th in central London. 

Speakers at last year’s London rally (August 21st, 2011) included Lauren Booth and a representative of Hizb ut Tahrir Britain, Abdul Wahid, both of whom called for surrounding countries to launch an all-out war on Israel. Participants carried signs advocating the destruction of the State of Israel and many expressed support for the proscribed Iranian-backed terror organisation Hizballah. An additional speaker also made racist statements regarding President Obama. 

Al Quds Day, London, 21st August 2011

The organization of an event which promotes – year after year – racism, incitement to racial hatred, support for terror organizations and incitement to violence should, in theory at least, be at odds with the Islamic Human Rights Commission’s status both as a registered charity in England and Wales and a body with special consultative status at the United Nations Economic and Social Council. It should, in theory, have disqualified the IHRC from being considered a worthy partner for the British Police Force’s anti-terror units and the British Parliament.  

However – to date – it has not. 


Founded in 1997, the mission statement of the Islamic Human Rights Commission on its Charity Commission web page claims that its aim is “To promote human rights and equality and diversity (in particular good race relations) throughout the world for the benefit of the public.”  The style and content of the IHRC’s annual ‘Al Quds Day’ events, along with much of its additional campaigning,  suggest that “good race relations” are in fact far from being its true aim. 

The Charity Commission’s guidelines on charities and terrorism include clauses which would appear to be at odds with many of the activities of the IHRC and its officials. 

“If an organisation is proscribed, it is illegal for it to operate in the UK. It is a criminal offence for a person to belong to or invite support for a proscribed organization. It is also a criminal offence to arrange a meeting in support of a proscribed organization or to wear clothing or to carry articles in public which arouse reasonable suspicion that an individual is a member or supporter of the proscribed organisation.”

“Any links between a charity and terrorism are totally unacceptable and corrosive of public confidence in charities. Trustees must be vigilant to ensure that a charity’s premises, assets, staff, volunteers and other resources cannot be used for activities that may, or appear to, support proscribed organisations.”

Whilst UK law proscribes only the ‘military wing’ of Hizballah, there is no separate flag for its political wing, meaning that the abundance of Hizballah flags at Al Quds Day rallies can certainly be viewed as ‘reasonable suspicion’ of support for a proscribed terrorist organisation, particularly when viewed in the context of other material present and the speeches made at those rallies. 

Hizballah military parade, Al Quds Day 2002, Nabatiyeh, Lebanon.

The repeated organisation of rallies at which Hizballah flags are carried and worn (including by IHRC officials and employees) along with placards stating “We are all Hizballah” and the collaboration with known members and sympathisers of Hamas, leaves little room for doubt as to the IHRC’s active support for those proscribed organisations. 

Massoud Shadjareh, chair of the IHRC, wearing a Hizballah scarf – Al Quds Day rally London, 2002.

Al Quds Day Rally, London, August 21st 2011

Al Quds Day Rally, London, August 21st 2011

The Charity Commission of England and Wales has to date not seen fit to take action either on these annual blatant displays of support for terrorism or on the subject of the IHRC’s incitement to violence and racial hatred. Neither, it seems, has the Charity Commission paid much attention to the nature of the less public activities and connections of some of the IHRC’s founders, officials and functionaries and the question of whether such people are appropriate as part of a government-recognised and approved body – again despite its own recommendations

“..even indirect or informal links with a terrorist organisation pose unacceptable risks to the property of a charity and its proper and effective administration. Even if the link or association did not amount to a criminal offence, it is difficult to see how a charity could adequately manage the risks to the charity and find a way in which the trustees could properly discharge their charity law duties and responsibilities.” 

Activities and Personalities:

In June 2005 the IHRC organised a conference entitled “Towards a New Liberation Theology: Reflections on Palestine” at SOAS in London, in collaboration with the Tehran-based NEDA Institute for Scientific Political Research & Studies. The director of NEDA, Jawad Sharbaf, made something of a name for himself in December 2005 by writing to Holocaust denier Roger Faurisson to express his commiserations at the UN decision to designate International Holocaust Memorial Day (the correspondence can be viewed on Faurisson’s site here).  

Among the speakers at that IHRC/NEDA organised conference (in 2009 the addresses were later published as a book by the IHRC, with Sharbaf as editor) was Hizballah member Rima Fakhry, who was interviewed by the Guardian during her visit to London. 

Mrs Fakhry said her group believes in the destruction of Israel and expulsion of tens of thousands of Jews: “This is a hope, a long-term strategy.”

“Israelis don’t have a right to stay in Palestine, the state of Israel is an illegal state.”

“One day the Palestinians will destroy Israel and return to their land.”

Other speakers included one of the IHRC’s founders – Saied Reza Ameli – and two members of its advisory board – Muhammad Al Asi and Achmad Cassiem. 

Achmad Cassiem:

Achmad Cassiem is head of the South African Islamist group ‘Qibla (which was categorised as a terrorist organisation by the US State Department) and its offshoot PAGAD, as well as head of the Islamic Unity Convention. According to the South African government, members of Qibla have trained in Libya and Pakistan and some have fought with Hizbollah in Lebanon. The group seeks to establish an Iranian-style Islamic regime in South Africa and Cassiem has visited Iran. 

Cassiem frequently compares and links Israel to the former apartheid regime in South Africa and not only rejects the two-state solution to the conflict, but openly advocates violence as a means of dismantling Israel.   

“… Armed struggle is of course essential because in the Quran armed resistance, armed struggle is ordained by Allah – the first time armed struggle is made permissible for Muslims is in Surah Hajj -surah 22 ayat 39, Allah says ‘permission is given to you to fight because you have been wronged’ – that principle essentially means that the only people in the world who have the sole justification for resorting to armed struggle, to violence, to force are the oppressed people – nobody else has that right or justification.

But more importantly it is immoral, irrational, it is obscene for an oppressor to tell the oppressed how they should respond to oppression, so if there are two principles that we should teach all oppressed people then it is those two principles”


“A major principle has evolved through centuries of armed, struggle against oppressors worldwide; that it is irrational, illogical, and obscene for the oppressors to tell the oppressed how they should respond to their own oppression. We endorsed that principle here in South Africa, and we endorse it on behalf of the Palestinian people. This means that the Zionist Regime, its lackeys and supporters cannot, may not and should not be allowed to propose any solutions. This would specifically exclude the idea of a two-state solution: that is, a Zionist State and a Palestinian State existing side by side on the land of the Palestinian people. Tova Herzl [israeli ambassador] frequently mentions that the Zionist State is only the size of the Kruger National Park; our position is that even if the Zionist State is the size of a postage stamp it has no right to exist.

Occupied Palestine must be decolonized, deracialized and restored to the Palestinian people as a single sovereign state. In plain English, the Zionist State must be dismantled.”

At an ‘anti-war’ rally in Trafalgar Square in London on September 19th 2005, Cassiem urged the crowd to adopt the slogan “one oppressor – one bullet”. (Note the introduction by Anas Al Tikriti of the Muslim Association of Britain and the Cordoba Foundation, with IHRC chair Massoud Shadjareh standing close by, draped in what appears to be a Hizballah flag). 

Muhammad Al Asi:

Another advisor to the IHRC is Muhammad Al Asi of the US –co- founder of the Institute for Contemporary Islamic Thought and formerly of the Islamic Centre of Washington – who is frequently to be found on the lecture circuit and is closely linked to the Iranian regime

As well as being known for his belief that 9/11 was planned by the American Administration, and his Holocaust denial, Al Asi frequently dabbles in nakedly anti-Semitic tropes such as in this quote from 2001:  

“We have a psychosis in the Jewish community that is unable to co-exist equally and brotherly with other human beings. You can take a Jew out of the ghetto, but you can’t take the ghetto out of the Jew. And, this has been demonstrated time and time again in Occupied Palestine. And, now they have American diplomats and politicians and decision makers and strategists in their pocket because they have the money.”

This quote from 2002 appears – like many others – to suggest that Al Asi is less than committed to finding peaceful solutions to the Arab-Israeli conflict: 

“If the only thing the Israelis and their mentors, and their sponsors and their superiors in Washington DC are going to understand is the use of force, than that’s the language we’re going to communicate with, we’re going to use force. And whatever was taken by force can only be retrieved by force.”

At a 2007 event held in London by the IHRC to celebrate its 10th anniversary, Al Asi – speaking on the subject of Islamophobia – said: (all errors in the original)

“I think any attempt at speaking about islamophobia by omitting the zionist factor is almost useless. In other words if I was to become very simplistic and we were all to assume that there is no zionist israeli occupation of Palestine of the Holy Land I don’t think we would be here today, honestly! I don’t think islamophobia would have been an issue. The world would still have its problems, we would probably still have our disagreements and agreements, the ebb and flow of them as they have been through out history, we’ve always have had these types of issues. But the chronic stage we have reached in today’s world I think can be traced directly and bluntly to the zionist usurpation and occupation of the Holy Land.”

Saied Reza Ameli:

IHRC founder Saied Reza Ameli is also a former director of the Institute of Islamic Studies and co-founder of the Islamic Centre of England (ICEL) which was established in 1996 by Ayatollah Mohsen Araki – Khamenei’s representative in Britain at the time – and acts as a ‘support organisation’ to the IHRC in the organization of the annual Al Quds Day events. The ICEL also organizes conferences and events promoting the Iranian regime and its ideology.

Between 2006 and 2009 Ameli was an Honorary Research Fellow at Birmingham University in the UK. 

Ameli often lends a supposedly ‘academic’ view to the anti-Israel campaign. He presented a paper on the subject of ‘The United States’ Virtual Colonialism’ at the 2011 ‘International Conference of Global Alliance against Terrorism’ organized by the Iranian regime. The conference’s closing statement included predictable anti-Israel messages: 

“We condemn the state terrorism against the oppressed Palestinian nation, and other nations by the Israeli regime and its allies.”

Ameli has written for the ‘Palestine Internationalist’ (which formerly included the IHRC’s director of research Arzu Merali on its editorial team) and appears frequently at IHRC-organised conferences such as the one mentioned above.  

‘Prisoners of Faith':

The IHRC also engages in campaigning for so-called prisoners of faith. One of its ongoing campaigns involves Omar Abdel Rahman – currently serving a life sentence in the United States due to involvement in the 1993 World Trade Centre bombing plot. 

In its early days, the IHRC campaigned on behalf of ‘prisoner of faith’ Ibrahim al Zakzaky – head of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN); an Iranian backed and financed Shi’ite Islamist group modelled on Hizballah which has been implicated in various acts of violence.  Zakzaky is virulently anti-Western and anti-Semitic and the IMN website contains much in the way of anti-Semitic material and conspiracy theories. Sheikh Zakzaky considers Jews to be “the lowest of creatures on earth” and the “children of monkeys of pigs (sic)”. Here he is on the subject of 9/11: 

“And how are we sure that the September 11 was not also the work of CIA and FBI? They dodge the question each time you ask them. They said that before the September 11 a lot of terrorists removed their money from the banks and sold their stocks, but they didn’t give us the list of those terrorists.  We know that they’re the people who did it, they were living within America and they withdraw their money from banks, and they sold their stocks. And we also know that nobody denies the fact that in the World Trade Center, it is known that about 5000 Jews worked in the center.  On that faithful Tuesday 11th September, not a single Jew was there.  Was it by accident?  Not a single Jew was killed or have you heard them mention any Jew being a victim of the September 11 tragedy.  Not a single Jew died! And you know it was not a busy Tuesday and the job of the Jews is bold.  Was it a coincidence that, that fateful Tuesday all of them failed to go to work?” 

Zakzaky is a member of the International Assembly of Ahlul Bayt – the Iranian organisation which promotes Shi’ite Islam and Khomeinist ideology around the globe. According to this document, Zakzaky is also an advisor to the Islamic Human Rights Commission. 

Sheikh Ibrahim Al Zakai (far right) at an IHRC-organised seminar in London in October 2010 together with (R to L) Saied Reza Ameli (co-founder IHRC, Tehran University), Massoud Shadjareh (co-founder and chair IHRC), Mohideen Abdul Kader.

Massoud Shadjareh:

Were one to look for proof of the fact that the IHRC is just one of several Iranian support groups at work in the UK rather than an actual ‘human rights’ organization as it claims to be (and upon the basis of which it was allotted both Charity Commission recognition and UN consultative status), one need look no further than the IHRC’s co-founder and chair Massoud Shadjareh – seen here at the 2010 Al Quds Day event – who, when asked about the very real human rights abuses in Iran, can only reply “I don’t know what you’re talking about”. 

In contrast, Shadjareh is an active campaigner for Aafia Siddiqui, (sentenced to 86 years of imprisonment in 2010) who he claims is being “oppressed by non-Muslims”. 

The Islamic Human Rights Commission under Shadjareh’s leadership is – as mentioned above – just one of several pro-Iranian organisations operating in the UK. Like all of them, it takes a virulently anti-Western and anti-Israeli stance, of which the annual Al Quds Day march is but one small part. Like many others, it is also involved in attempts to boycott Israeli goods, anti-Israel campaigning, propaganda and delegitimisation.

The IHRC also played a part in the infamous ‘Durban I’ conference in 2001, to which it sent a team of 13 representatives  and where it presented a paper entitled Apartheid in the Holy Land, written by IHRC  researcher at the time Nafeez Ahmed. It continued to play a role in follow-up events in 2009


The above represents just a small taste of the activities of the IHRC and the personalities involved with that organization: the annual Al Quds Day march is just the tip of a very large iceberg. The difference between the IHRC and other elements of the Iranian support network in the UK is that it has Charity Commission approved status, has been courted by the British government and holds consultative status at the UN.  

The continuation (or not) of that current state of affairs rests ultimately in the hands of the British government which can, if it so wishes, act to alter the current status quo in which the term ‘human rights’ is being used and abused by a group of sympathisers with and activists for one of the most repressive, abusive, discriminatory, terror-enabling regimes plaguing the modern world – with the UK government’s rubber stamp. 

The British Prime Minister David Cameron recently stated that his country will do “everything it can” to help track down the perpetrators of the murders of Israeli holiday-makers in Bulgaria. If he is serious about combatting terror both at home and abroad, then he will no longer be able to tolerate the situation in which, on the one hand, his government passes legislation and invests resources to prevent terrorism but yet at the same time permits supporters of the world’s worst terror-nurturing regime to glorify and promote Iran’s terror proxies on London’s streets. 

A case study in anti-Semitism within British academia

Here at CiF Watch we, like many others, have for some time been following the very worrying events taking place with alarming regularity in too many British universities.

From the cancellation of lectures by some pro-Israeli speakers, through the heckling and intimidation of others, to the despicable attacks upon Talya Lador-Fresher (Israel Deputy Ambassador to the UK) last year in Manchester and a protester outside SOAS just recently, these events indicate beyond all doubt that something is seriously amiss in the higher education system of Great Britain. Ambassador Ron Prosor apparently thinks so too.

“Speaking at a conference on British-Israeli diplomatic relations at the think-tank Chatham House, he said there had “never been so much hatred and hypocrisy towards the state of Israel in British universities.”

Just as there seems to be very little enthusiasm in those same establishments to face up to the issue of Islamist radicalization within the confines of their protected walls, or the long-since known (but recently further publicized) subject of the funding of some of those institutions by human-rights abusing regimes and dictatorships, nothing very effective appears to be being done to counter the virulently anti-Israel (and sometimes anti-Semitic) atmosphere in what are supposed to be bastions of free debate and liberal enlightenment.

A post (which recently generated some renewed interest) on the Daphne Anson blog regarding the Leicester University lecturer Dr. Claudia Prestel raises some questions as to just how committed the management of British universities are in combating extremism in their institutions. As pointed out in the post, Dr. Prestel has links with the Leicester branch of ‘Friends of Al Aqsa’. She has written for their magazine and spoken together with the chair of that organization, Ismail Patel, at an event organized by the Leicester University Palestine Support Group. She is also a supporter of Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) against Israel.

Some might say that what Dr. Prestel or any other university lecturer chooses to do with his or her free time is nobody’s business. Others might raise reasonable concerns that perhaps the political opinions of such lecturers do not always remain outside the lecture hall.  What I found particularly interesting about this specific case is that Leicester University runs a centre for the study of the Holocaust, of which Dr. Prestel is also a member. And yet nobody in that institution seems to think it inappropriate that she should maintain connections with an organization which has quoted Holocaust deniers on its website, headed by a man who supports a terrorist organization with genocidal aspirations of its own.

‘Friends of Al Aqsa’ is one of the more extremist Islamist organizations at work in Britain today. It supports the Muslim Brotherhood-linked charity ‘Interpal’ (proscribed by the US Treasury) and advertises it on its website. It collaborates with the Khomenist Iranian-funded faux human rights organization known as the Islamic Human Rights Commission in organizing events such as Al Quds day at which public support is expressed for the Iranian proxy militia Hizbollah.

Advert for Friends of Al Aqsa sponsored event

Ismail Patel himself is a member of the red-green ‘Stop the War coalition’ and has represented that body at a Hizbollah conference. He is a spokesperson for the Muslim Brotherhood affiliated ‘British Muslim Initiative, has been involved in the organization of the annual ‘Islam Expo’ hate-fest, is a member of ‘Conflicts Forum’ which advocates engaging with terrorists and was a passenger aboard the ‘Mavi Marmara’ which tried to break the Israeli naval blockade on Gaza last May. The voyage was co-sponsored by the Turkish organization the IHH which is a member of the Muslim Brotherhood’s ‘Union of Good’. Patel’s recommended reading list includes the work of Holocaust denier Roger Garaudy who does not believe that there was a Nazi plan to exterminate the Jews of Europe or that there were gas chambers.

One wonders if those attending last year’s conference on the subject of Holocaust Denial at Leicester University’s Centre for Holocaust Studies were aware that one of the associate members of that centre rubs shoulders with Islamist extremists who are not averse to a little denial of the Nazi Holocaust themselves and support both Hamas – with its genocidal charter – and the Iranian regime infamous for the Holocaust denial of its president.

One especially wonders whether the management of the Stanley Burton Centre for Holocaust Studies and Leicester University as a whole consider Dr Prestel’s extra-curricular associations appropriate under the circumstances and whether or not they have given any thought whatsoever to the fact that allowing people such as Ismail Patel to speak on their campus is precisely the sort of supine approach which is contributing to the spread of increasingly violent extremism in universities throughout the British Isles.

As people who study racial hatred as a profession, one would hope that they would be able to make that rather obvious connection.

White Collar BDS

CiF Watch readers need no introduction to anti-Zionist Avi Shlaim, Professor of International Relations at Oxford University, but may be less familiar with his co-author of the May 7th CiF article, Simon Mohun. The latter is a Professor of Political Economics at Queen Mary University of London and appears to have a penchant for Marxism and signing letters denouncing Israel to British newspapers.

Shlaim and Mohun’s claim that “It is vital therefore that the OECD makes Israeli accession conditional on tangible improvements in its human rights record and a commitment to embark on a credible peace process” is in fact nothing more than a ‘new economist’ argument, employing precisely the same tactics as Shlaim and his fellow ‘new historians’ : the distortion and selective presentation of facts to suit a specific political agenda, gift-wrapped in seemingly respectable academic packaging.

In the statement quoted above, the authors deliberately ignore the fact that Israel has embarked upon several peace processes in the past – Oslo, the Roadmap and others – each of which crumbled due to ill-considered choices made by the Palestinian leadership at the time. They both ignore the fact that for any credible peace process to get off the ground Palestinian infighting must come to an end, and seek to put the onus for the previous and current lack of progress on the diplomatic front exclusively upon Israel, thereby absolving the Palestinians of any responsibility whatsoever for their past, present or future as well as sweeping the glaring Palestinian refusal to recognize Israel’s existence under the carpet.

Shlaim and Mohun cite the Islamic Human Rights Commission’s attempts to put pressure upon Turkey to veto Israel’s entry to the OECD with approval. According to the Stephen Roth Institute:

The Islamic Human Rights Commission (IHRC) is a radical Islamist organization that uses the language and techniques of a human rights lobbying group to promote an extremist agenda. Formed in 1997 by its current chairman, Massoud Shadjareh, the IHRC supports jihad groups around the world, campaigns for the release of convicted terrorists and promotes the notion of a western conspiracy against Islam.

Shadjareh and the IHRC subscribe to the radical Islamist belief that Jewish conspiracies are afoot to undermine Muslims, and they compare Jews and Israelis to Nazis. Members of the IHRC’s board of advisors have even called on Muslims to kill Jews. They include the Saudi Islamist Muhammad al-Mas‘ari and Muhammad al-‘Asi, an American convert to Islam who was banned from preaching at his mosque in Washington, DC, and has been a frequent visitor to Britain.

The IHRC organizes the annual Quds day demonstration in London, on the last Friday of Ramadan, initiated by the late Ayatollah Khomeini to protest the Zionist “occupation” of Jerusalem. At the IHRC-organized demonstration against the Israel solidarity rally in Trafalgar Square in May, participants called for holy war against Israel, recalling the battle of Khaybar waged by the followers of Muhammad against the Jews, and declared their loyalty to Usama bin Ladin and Shaykh Ahmad Yasin.

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