This is cross posted by Mark Gardner at the blog of the CST
Yesterday, CST Blog ran two separate items in the one posting: 1. part of an article about “American/neo-con ‘Long War’ to create a “New Middle East”…US/Zionist plans”: 2. an anti-Israel activist shouting “go back to bloody Russia” at a pro-Israel activist. We asked if you could guess which discourse came from a leading member of the BNP, and which came from a leading member of the Respect Party.
In truth, it was all a bit disingenuous. If a Respect activist had written yet another article about Americans, neo-cons and Zionists, then nobody would have noticed. Furthermore, Respect has fallen apart (even compared to the BNP).
So, the answer to yesterday’s quiz – The neo-con/Zionist article was written by BNP leader, Nick Griffin; and “go back to bloody Russia” was shouted by Tower Hamlets Respect chair, Carole Swords.
We can ponder if Griffin, especially in his younger days, may have heard the ugly old racist refrain:
If they’re black, send them back!
Its about as plain an example of racism as you will ever hear.
Carole Swords, however, is politically the opposite of this sort of filth. In its own little way, her outburst typifies the disconnect between common sense anti-racist principles and what passes for acceptable anti-Israel discourse in the anti-Israel movement.
Of course, we have been here before, in particular with last year’s highly publicised case of veteran US White House reporter, Helen Thomas, disgraced after telling Israeli Jews that they should “Go home, Poland, Germany”.
There, are, however, far more important voices than Swords and Thomas in all of this. There is, for example, senior Hamas figure, Osama Hamdan, who this May told a TV interviewer, of the approach that the newly reconciled Fatah and Hamas groups would take towards Israel:
…Yes, it will be an armed confrontation, as well as all other forms of struggle, including civil Intifdada against the occupation, against the wall, and against the Judaization of Jerusalem.
There is no doubt, however, that the armed confrontation will continue to be the main effort and the backbone of the resistance, until the liberation of Palestine.
…I think that politically, the two-state solution is over. The people who suggested this notion are the ones who say so. Therefore, trying to talk about a two-state solution again is like talking about something that is over and done with.
…we are entering the phase of the liberation of Palestine. When we talk about the liberation of Palestine, we are talking about the notion of Return: the return of the refugees to their homeland, and the return of the Israelis to the countries from which they came.
Carole Swords does not restrict her passions to Tower Hamlets. She is the creator of the Viva Palestina facebook page; and was on the Viva Palestina convoy to Hamas-led Gaza in September/October 2010. Osama Hamdan, who warns of the imminent armed confrontation and “the return of the Israelis from which they came” is not just any old Hamas leader. He is the Head of Hamas Foreign Relations Department, so is a man we can expect knows about Viva Palestina, whether he knows Carole Swords is of course another matter entirely. (See him here, as a Guardian Comment is Free writer, forgetting to mention the forthcoming “armed confrontation” and subsequent deportation of Jews from Israel.)
Below, you can see Carole Swords in action. “Back to bloody Russia” is at 1 min 45 secs. Osama Hamdan should be told.