Palestinian Amb to the UK: “I’ve started to believe that the Jews are the only children of God”

The following is a first person account by London-based blogger, Richard Millett

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Jeremy Corbyn MP, Hugh Lanning, Manuel Hassassian in Parliament last night.

Last night Manuel Hassassian, the Palestinian “Ambassador” to the UK, said he believes that the Jews are the children of God because nobody is stopping them from building their “messianic dream of Eretz Israel”. He called for a “one state solution” and looked forward to the world’s Muslim population reaching two billion.

He was speaking in Parliament at the Palestine Solidarity Campaign4 years on from Israel’s ‘Operation Cast Lead’: Israel’s siege and attacks continue. Also speaking were Labour’s Shadow Justice Minister Andy Slaughter MP and Liberal Democrat MP Sarah Teather. Labour MP Jeremy Corbyn played host.

Addressing an audience of some 100 people Hassassian declared:

“We, the Palestinians, the most highly educated and intellectual in the Middle East, are still struggling for the basic right of self-determination. What an irony. How long are we going to suffer and be patient with Israel? You know I’m reaching the conclusion that the Jews are the children of God, the only children of God and the Promised Land is being paid by God! I have started to believe this because nobody is stopping Israel building its messianic dream of Eretz Israel to the point I believe that maybe God is on their side. Maybe God is partial on this issue.”

Then removing his “PLO and Palestinian Authority hat” he continued:

“There is no two state solution. Democracies don’t fight each other. If Israel is a democracy I would claim that the Palestinians are also a democracy. If democracies cannot fight each other then why not have one state?; one man, one vote.”

On Israel’s future he said:

“Israel will never continue to exist as a pariah state. Israel could never continue to fight wars against the Palestinians, against the Arabs and the Muslims. The United States is not going to be Israel’s strategic ally for time immemorial. And today we have 1.5 billion Muslims. In 20 years we will have 2 billion. And those 2 billion, forget about politics, from a religious perspective will not allow Israel to continue desecrating their religious rights (in Jerusalem). And then what?”

And on what could have been Hassassian said:

“What does Israel want? In 2002 the Arabs gave them the Arab Peace Initiative. Relinquishing territories occupied in 1967 would have led to normalisation of relations with Israel. If the Israelis had accepted that the flag of Israel would have been hoisted in Mecca, in Iran, in Tehran! If they had accepted. But Israel does not want peace. Israel nurtures on conflict, and the Zionist Ideology is to have the entire West Bank, the entire Palestine.”

Andy Slaughter MP accused Israel of deliberately killing whole Palestinian families and controlling the Palestinians’ calorie count. He said Israel supplied Palestinians just enough to stop them from starving and he described, what he called, Israel’s failure to supply clean water, electricity and decent homes as “collective punishment”.

Sarah Teather MP accused Israel of “wiping out five thousand homes” in one part of Gaza alone and that nothing could justify this.  She said that Israel must let “basic goods” into Gaza.

PSC Chair Hugh Lanning said he noticed that during Operation Cast Lead CNN only reported on the Hamas rockets. Lanning then claimed that “while the occupation and siege continues Israel is ALWAYS the aggressor”.  He also claimed that Israel had banned 180 life saving medicines from Gazan hospitals “because they might save lives”.

Jeremy Corbyn spoke about Gazans who had “never known the ability to move out of Gaza”. Ironically, he then introduced us to Rania Al-Najjar who has just completed a Masters in International Relations at London’s City University. Rania is from Gaza. She said, inter alia, that there are no economic opportunities in Gaza and that unemployment there is the highest in the world, relatively.

We then heard from two “1948 Palestinians” who live in Israel. One of them had spent three spells in Israeli prisons, his sentences ranging from one to eight years. He spoke about the remaining prisoners who had forgotten what the sky and moon look like and how they had not touched the hands of their mothers or children for many years.

Finally, Hugh Lanning announced that there will be a “controversial PSC conference” on April 13th where there will be “an open dialogue with the people of Gaza and their leaders”.

In other words, an open dialogue with Hamas.

On the Guardian’s continuing subservience to the racist BDS lobby

Anyone who was following Friday’s Twitter tirades, as hundreds of activists (or as French journalists call them, ‘militants’) embarked upon the latest failed attempt to embarrass Israel in the form of the ill-fated ‘flytilla’ will probably have noticed a Tweet on the now suspended  ‘PalSpring’ account sometime in the early afternoon from the Palestinian BDS movement’s National Committee (BNC) .

The Tweet advertised a call by the BNC to “Impose an immediate, comprehensive military embargo on Israel”.  The statement included the following wording: 

“Seven years after the International Court of Justice advisory opinion recommending international cooperation to ensure that Israel dismantles its illegal Wall in the occupied West Bank”

“Furthermore, Israel has consistently taken advantage of its armed conflicts and military assaults for “field-testing” its weapons and doctrines of warfare against Palestinian and Lebanese civilians, in partnership with its research institutes.”

“A comprehensive military embargo on Israel is long overdue.” 

“the Palestinian BDS National Committee (BNC) calls for immediate international action towards a mandatory comprehensive military embargo against Israel similar to that imposed against apartheid South Africa in the past.”

At 9 p.m. on the same evening, July 8th, a letter appeared in the ‘World News/Palestinian Territories’ section of the Guardian’s website. Here is its wording – all emphasis mine:

Today marks seven years since the international court of justice ruling that the apartheid wall being built by Israel in the occupied West Bank is illegal and should be torn down. Yet the wall continues to be built, cutting children off from schools, farmers from their land and families from each other, devastating virtually every aspect of Palestinian life. A military embargo of Israel is long overdue.

Today, Palestinian civil society and its supporters worldwide are launching a global campaign for a comprehensive, military embargo against Israel, similar to that imposed against apartheid-era South Africa. The UK government continues to sell millions of pounds of arms to Israel in violation of its own arms export policy. In 2010, the UK government approved licences for arms exports to Israel worth £23.7m.

The government also buys military equipment from Israel which is “battle-tested” against Palestinians living in the occupied territories. By selling arms to Israel the UK is giving direct material support for Israel’s aggression and sending a clear message of approval for its actions. A complete arms embargo between the UK and Israel must be implemented immediately.”

Of course the startlingly similar wording in the two documents is no coincidence. One of the signatories of the Guardian letter is Hind Awwad – a senior member of the BNC. Another is Sarah Colborne of the UK Palestine Solidarity Campaign, who appears to have taken time out from her current enthusiastic defence campaign on behalf of the antisemitic and homophobic Islamist preacher Raed Salah (currently under arrest in the UK) in order to sign this letter. The PSC and the BNC are, of course, both connected to the BDS campaign, the flotilla and the flytilla.

Two years ago the Council of Europe’s European Court of Human Rights ruled that it is illegal and discriminatory to boycott Israeli goods. It further ruled that making it illegal to boycott Israeli goods does not constitute a violation of freedom of expression.  The BNC and the PSC are two of several organisations at the forefront of the BDS campaign.

The Guardian’s legal department may therefore care to examine the implications of the willingness of its letters  editor to act as a puppet on a string for extremist and discriminatory organisations such as the BNC and the PSC.

When racists and bigots say “jump”, liberal voices should not be asking “how high?”