OPEN LETTER IN RESPONSE TO THE SIGNATORIES OT TODAY’S OPEN LETTER ADDRESSED TO THE BOARD OF DEPUTIES AND ZIONIST FEDERATION
THIS LETTER IS FROM THE COMMITTEE OF NORTH WEST FRIENDS OF ISRAEL
NWFOI, and other grass roots organisations like us, stand on three inter-linked platforms. We fight anti-Semitism, we campaign against BDS and we advocate positively for Israel.
It is obvious to those with any sense of political awareness that Israel is subject to a disproportionate level of public criticism at best and ongoing deligitimisation at worst.
We believe this is primarily motivated by anti-Semitism masquerading as anti-Zionism. So we see our place as attempting to redress that almost overwhelming imbalance in public perception of Israel, fuelled by people who simply want us destroyed.
On the other hand we have the “Plastic” Zionists (#PlasticZionists): those who purport to be true Zionists but who never seem to be able to say anything positive about Israel without qualifying their statements by either condemning Israel at the same time or making excuses for the terrorist acts of our Palestinian neighbours. Quite often the condemnation comes without any corresponding understanding from the Israeli perspective.
Last week, there was a Twitter exchange with one such Plastic Zionist who questioned Israel’s policy of punishing the families of terrorists – those same people who exalt in the heroic actions of their murderous kin and accept financial reward from the PA or Hamas or Qatar. “How are they supposed to eat” he asked “if Israel acts against the breadwinners?” This is Plastic Zionism – excusing the acts of terrorists and juxtaposing the victims with the villains.
Now specifically to address some of the nonsense in the letter to the BoD and ZF:
Nobody has ever said Palestinian lives don’t matter. The only people who don’t care about Palestinian lives are Hamas, Hezbollah, Al Qaida, ISIL, the PA, the regimes of Syria, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Egypt, Qatar and Iran.
The hashtag #IsraeliLivesMatter originated in response to the almost deafening silence of UK media following the spate of terrorist stabbings that is still ongoing and the even worse imbalance in headlines that present the Palestinians as victims rather than the perpetrators that they are.
We are really not sure why the Plastic Zionists cannot see 1) the need to protest against the incitement of terrorist acts by the PA and 2) the reason why the Palestinian Mission is the legitimate place to express the UK community’s shock and revulsion at recent events. The Palestinian Mission is, after all, the home of the Palestinian Ambassador and Consulate offices.
The “Us vs Them” argument is just too ridiculous – if we have concerns about the role of the PA in whipping up hysteria over the Temple Mount, encouraging terrorist incursions that are costing innocent Israeli lives and, often, the lives of the Palestinian attackers, where else should those concerns be expressed in peaceful protest than the home of the PA in the UK? This is NOT Jew vs Palestinian. This is the Jewish Community of the UK going to the door of the PA to say “we are deeply upset, we are angry and we are not going to take it any more”.
We would be interested in seeing any “open letters” from the Plastic Zionists expressing their concerns that “uniquely Palestinian troubles are laid at the door of the Israeli Embassy in London”, to paraphrase their key point, when the unholy Red/Green alliance gather there to protest all things Jewish and Israeli.
It is just too cute to demean the Jewish Community’s concern at the Palestinian Authority’s incitement of terrorists by labelling it inflammatory or inciting ethnic tensions. The Plastic Zionists would wholeheartedly support the rights of Palestinians, BDS activists, Left Wing anti-Semites, Right Wing racists, Anarchists and associated Jew Haters to express their hatred of Israel in “legitimate peaceful protest” but not the rights of the Jewish Community apparently.
The Board of Deputies statement on the current situation is exemplary in our opinion. And the support of the BoD and ZF for the community protest tomorrow night is right and proper. When Jews are attacked we will defend ourselves, whether that suits the Plastic Zionists or not.
The Committee of NWFOI