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Lobby defeats Corbyn on antisemitism definition, but Zionist leaders face Deselection

(1) Lobby defeats Corbyn on IHRA antisemitism definition

(2) Labour branches pass No-Confidence motions against Zionist Blairite Labour MPs

(3) Corbyn refuses to intervene to stop deselection of Zionist Blairite Labour MPs

(4) Corbyn and the Jewish Question - Gilad Atzmon

(5) Palestinian Arab MPs in Israel back Corbyn

(6) Jews and Gentiles, by Gilad Atzmon


(1) Lobby defeats Corbyn on IHRA antisemitism definition

From "Sadanand, Nanjundiah (Physics and Engineering Physics)" (

Labour adopts IHRA antisemitism definition in full 

By Dan Sabbagh ,The Guardian,

Labour’s ruling body has agreed to adopt the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s definition of antisemitism in full after a tense meeting in which an accompanying clarification put forward by Jeremy Corbyn was not accepted.


The party leader withdrew his additional statement when it was clear it could not be agreed upon and instead, after a discussion that overran its allotted time by several hours, the national executive committee (NEC) approved the release of brief remarks emphasising freedom of expression on Israel and the rights of Palestinians.

The most controversial passage in the draft statement proposed by Corbyn said: “It cannot be considered racist to treat Israel like any other state or assess its conduct against the standards ofinternational law. Nor should it be regarded as antisemitic to describe Israel, its policies or the circumstances around its foundation as racist because of their discriminatory impact, or to support another settlement of the Israel-Palestine conflict.”

Labour sources said Corbyn spoke about the importance of the NEC being united on the issue and said his statement was not formally moved. They added that there were “no votes” on antisemitism and the party’s code of conduct at the meeting because decisions were reached by consensus.

Corbyn spoke of Labour’s commitment to “eradicating the social cancer of antisemitism”, the party sources said, and recognised “deep concern and pain” across the party over the loss of confidence among Jewish communities.

He made no reference in the meeting to arguments about his own conduct. Last month, a video from 2013 reemerged that showed him accusing a group of Zionists having no sense of English irony,prompting him to clarify that he was using the term in a its “politically accurate” sense.

Peter Willsman, a Corbyn-supporting member of the NEC, who had accused Jewish Trump fanatics of making up some of the allegations of antisemitism in the party at its previous meeting, recused himselffrom the first part of the discussion on the IHRA code before rejoining proceedings.

The Board of Deputies of British Jews welcomed the outcome of the meeting. Marie van der Zyl, its president, said adopting the IHRA definition “had to be the right call”. She said: “It is very longoverdue and regrettable that Labour has wasted a whole summer trying to dictate to Jews what constitutes offence against us.”

The Jewish Leadership Council initially suggested that Labour had taken a necessary step, but later retracted that statement, saying it had been based on a “disingenuous presentation of what the NEC decided”.

In a second statement, the JLC’s chief executive, Simon Johnson, said Corbyn had “attempted shamefully to undermine the entire IHRAdefinition”, adding that the free speech caveat “drives a coach and horses” through that definition. “It is clearly more important to theLabour leader to protect the free speech of those who hate Israel than it is to protect the Jewish community from the real threats that itfaces,” Johnson said.

MP Chris Williamson, a close Corbyn ally, insisted the row was overblown. “It’s been alleged that Labour hasn’t accepted the full IHRA definition. We have accepted the full IHRA definition. The argument is about examples,” he told Talk Radio.

Some of the examples “fetter free speech”, Williamson said, adding: “Jewish academics have said these examples are not fit for purpose.”


(2) Labour branches pass No-Confidence motions against Zionist Blairite Labour MPs

Britain: No-Confidence Motions Passed Against Leading Blairite MPs


Cheers greeted the passing of a no-confidence motion, by 94 votes to 92, on Thursday night at a meeting of Enfield North Labour Party against Blairite Labour MP, Joan Ryan. Ryan, who chairs the Zionist Labour Friends of Israel (LFI), has been at the forefront of thecampaign to oust Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn.

The same evening, Labour MP Gavin Shuker also lost a no-confidence vote after 33 members of his Luton South local party voted against him, with five abstaining and only three supporting him.

Ever since the failed 2016 leadership putsch against Corbyn, Ryan has been at the centre of the destabilisation campaign involving MI5, Mossad and the Central Intelligence Agency against the Labour leader. Her speciality is fabricating accusations of anti-Semitism against Corbyn and his supporters. The goal is to discredit socialism in the hope of preventing any challenge by the working class to austerity and the escalating pursuit of militarism and war in the Middle East and globally.

The no-confidence motion against Ryan took place despite an email dispatched earlier this week by the chair of the Enfield North Constituency Labour Party branch, Siddo Dwyer, claiming that themotion had been excluded from the agenda.

The motion declared, “Our MP has on numerous occasions contributed to and written articles that have been seized upon by a press unjustlyhostile to Jeremy Corbyn.” It called on local party members to express “no confidence in our MP Joan Ryan” and “the removal of the party whip and an open selection process for our next parliamentary candidate.”

Ryan confirmed the anti-communist narrative that underpins the bogus anti-Semitism campaign against Corbyn’s supporters. Demonstrating her contempt for the membership, which in Enfield North has grown from 300 to 1,000 since Corbyn was elected leader, she tweeted that the narrowmargin was “hardly [a] decisive victory and it never occurred to me that Trots, Stalinists, Communists and assorted hard left would gave [sic] confidence in me. I have none in them.”

According to the pro-Corbyn Skwawkbox blog, Ryan supportersintimidated members in charge of ballot-counting on the night—including threats of physical violence and at least one death threat.

Skwawkbox reported eyewitness accounts of a Ryan supporter lunging at a young Labour Party member, saying: “I will fucking kill you.” In a second incident against the same young person, a Ryan supporter“threatened to assault him and then lunged at him again”… “On both occasions, say shaken witnesses, the Ryan supporter had to be physically restrained by others to prevent an assault. The incidents were serious enough to be reported to the police.”

This incident confirms that the real source of anti-democraticviolence and thuggery emanates from the right. Not a single mainstream media outlet—including the BBC and Guardian—has reported the attacksby Ryan supporters, as this would undercut their lying narrative portraying Blairite MPs as political martyrs.

In all the mainstream media coverage of Ryan, she is presented as the victim of the same “hard-left.” Little or nothing is said of her filthy political record.

Ryan first gained notoriety during the parliamentary expenses scandal that dominated the headlines a decade ago, after she claimed more than any other MP—£173,691 in 2007. In 2012, The Independent was still reporting that “[a]t least 10 attempts have been made from computers in Parliament to remove information about [Ryan’s] expense claims and a further 20 efforts to delete the information, some from her constituency of Enfield North, have also been recorded in Wikipedia’s logs.”

In 2008, as Labour’s vice-chair and prime minister Gordon Brown’s envoy to Cyprus, Ryan called for a leadership election as part of a group of 12 MPs affiliated to the Progress think-tank, seeking to replace him as prime minister for being insufficiently Blairite.

Most significant has been Ryan’s work as chair of Labour Friends of Israel, a lobby group that acts as a front for the Israeli embassy and is funded by it. Israel has been a key protagonist in the campaign against Corbyn and his support for the Palestinian cause.

In the film The Lobby, broadcast last year by Al Jazeera, LFI parliamentary officer Michael Rubin declares, “We work really closely together,” but “publicly we just try to keep the LFI as a separate identity to the embassy.”

Rubin revealed that Ryan was in almost daily contact with Shai Masot, an Israeli embassy staffer in London, caught on camera plotting to “take down” MPs perceived as hostile to Israel. Masot is also filmed discussing with leading figures in Conservative Friends of Israel, including Maria Strizzolo, a senior aide to Education Minister Robert Halfon and a former political director of CFI, about whether Strizzolicould help “take down” Foreign Office deputy, Sir Alan Duncan. The affair now looks like a practice run for the operation mounted againstCorbyn.

Last month, Luton South MP Gavin Shuker was identified in the press as one of a dozen Labour MPs threatening to quit in the hope of triggering a no-confidence vote in Corbyn’s leadership. Others in the group include Liz Kendall, Chris Leslie, Luciana Berger, Iain Austin and Ruth Smeeth.

Friday morning saw their ideological leader, Tony Blair, confirm the anti-socialist agenda of the planned split. Echoing Ryan’s tweet, he told the BBC he was “not sure” whether it was possible for Labour “moderates” to take the party back from Corbyn’s supporters, who came from a tradition on the fringe of the party, including Communists and “Trotskyist groups” before suggesting the emergence of a new “progressive, moderate” party in time for the next general election.

Blair told the BBC’s Nick Robinson that voters would not “tolerate” a situation where the choice for the next leader of the UK was Corbyn or a Conservative Party led by Boris Johnson: “I don’t know what will happen and I don’t know how it will happen, but I just don’t think people will find that in the country as a whole an acceptable choice. Something will fill that vacuum.”

At the Enfield North meeting, Socialist Equality Party (SEP) members distributed copies of the WSWS perspective comment “ Reject theanti-Semitism slurs against Jeremy Corbyn! Drive out the Labour Party right wing! ” Many stopped to talk, explaining they wanted an end todomination by the right wing and a fight against austerity. One Labour Party member said he wanted young people to rise up against the highcost of rents and housing. Another thanked SEP campaigners for the leaflet saying it had an impact, and that young people had to drive out the right wing.

The no-confidence motions show the sentiment among thousands who have joined the Labour Party, but they have no official force and leave the right wing in place. The Blairites have no compunction over defying Labour members and will only go if they are forced out.

Frank Field, who quit the parliamentary party by resigning the Labour whip, faced a no-confidence motion in his Birkenhead constituency party. But he is refusing to stand down as a Labour MP.

Ryan declared following the vote, “Just to be clear, I am not resigning. I am Labour through and through and I will continue to stand up and fight for Labour values.”

Shuker tweeted a message to his constituents that the no-confidence vote was “not part of any formal procedure, so it changes nothing about my role as Labour MP for Luton South.”

Yet all Corbyn and the leaders of Momentum are calling for is “greater democratic accountability” in the selection process for MPs, in which Momentum “will work with NEC [National Executive Committee] members, the trade union movement, and [Constituency Labour Party] delegates” to “ensure the best possible rule change is passed at this year’s party conference to achieve this end.”

Instead of denouncing Blair as a war criminal plotting to split his party, Corbyn urged “Tony” to “recognise that the party membership is now much bigger than it’s ever been” and to understand that this reflects “aspirations” for social change and that “people are not prepared any longer to live in a society that’s so unequal.”

Blair is fully aware of this sentiment and, like his acolytes, is determined to prevent such aspirations cutting across the interests of the financial oligarchy. If Corbyn were serious about honouring the mandate he has been given, he would be urging Labour members to expel all right-wing MPs immediately.

(3) Corbyn refuses to intervene to stop deselection of Zionist Blairite Labour MPs

Jeremy Corbyn refuses to intervene to stop deselection of Labour MPs

Anger over 'motion of censure' against shock Labour winner inCanterbury - but party leader says it 'would be wrong' for him to step

Rob Merrick Deputy Political Editor

Jeremy Corbyn has refused to intervene to stop the threatened deselection of some of his backbench critics, as fourth MP faced action.

Some fellow Labour MPs reacted with anger after it emerged there will be a “motion of censure” against Rosie Duffield, who won Canterbury in shock victory last year.

The move, to come on Wednesday night, follows comments she has made criticising Mr Corbyn's handling of the antisemitism row which has gripped the party in recent months.

But, speaking to Labour MPs on Monday night, Mr Corbyn again refused to step into what he insisted were decisions for local Labour branches.

Instead, he referred to Labour MPs thwarted attempt to topple him as leader in 2016, saying: “I know what it feels like to be the target of a no confidence vote but it would be wrong for me to intervene in the democratic rights of any part of the Labour party.”

Speaking to the parliamentary party, Mr Corbyn instead urged his critics to “turn our fire outwards”, after months of bitter internalrecriminations.

“The Labour party has always been a broad church and I'm determined it remains so.

“We will always have some differences of opinion and we must protect the right of criticism and debate but our first and overwhelming priority is to deliver for the people we represent and remove thisConservative government from office.

“We must focus on that priority and turn our fire outwards.”

At the meeting, the party leader was challenged over the fate of Ms Duffield and even urged to go to Canterbury to show his support for him.

In June last year, she pulled off a stunning triumph by winning the seat with a majority of just 187 from Conservative Julian Brazier, who had been the constituency’s MP for nearly 30 years.

Ms Duffield had warned that MPs could “go on strike” unless the party fully adopted all the internationally-recognised examples ofantisemitism, which it finally did last week.

The motion of censure also criticises her for attending ademonstration against antisemitism in the Labour party in Parliament Square earlier this year.

Following the MPs’ meeting, one Labour MP told The Independent:

“Jeremy is vulnerable unless he acts on this, because Rosie is not a factionalist in any way and is being targeted purely because of speaking up on antisemitism.”

Last week, former minister Joan Ryan, the Enfield North MP who chairs the Labour Friends of Israel group, and has spoken out about antisemitism, narrowly lost a confidence vote.

Two other MPs - Luton South’s Gavin Shuker and Chris Leslie, the Nottingham East MP - will also face a vote of all local party members after losing no confidence motions.

Mr Leslie said his party had been infiltrated by the “intolerant hard left” and the move had been “orchestrated nationally”.


(4) Corbyn and the Jewish Question - Gilad Atzmon

Corbyn and the Jewish Question

By Gilad Atzmon

August 31, 2018

It doesn’t take a genius to detect the present volatile state of British Jewish institutions. To the outside observer, some of the actions of Britain’s so-called Jewish ‘leaders’ may seem to be a form of collective insanity. Yet, the Brits do not seem to be at all impressed. They are perplexed by the self-propelled collectivehysteria. Naturally, many Brits do not agree with Corbyn on issues; some may not agree with his pacifist politics, others see him as a naïve delusional lefty, a few are upset by his association with controversial characters, but no one except a few Israel firsters sees Corbyn as a crazed ‘anti-Semite,’ let alone as a Hitler type who puts Jewish life under an “existential threat.” While it isn’t clear whether Corbyn can unite the Brits against their horrid government, it is increasingly likely that the Zionist lobby has the capacity to unite the Brits behind Corbyn. A comment on twitter the other day noted that “not supporting Corbyn at this point is an act of treason.” This week the ex-chief rabbi, Jonathan Sacks, became completely unhinged; comparing Corbyn to Enoch Powell’s “rivers of blood” speech.In an interview Rabbi Sacks maintained that Corbyn “undermines the existence of an entire group of British citizens by depicting them asessentially alien.” What had Corbyn said that provoked such an extreme reaction from the celebrity rabbi?  Apparently, in 2013 Corbyn criticised British Zionists by suggesting that they have two problems. “One is they don’t want to study history and, secondly, having lived in this country for a very long time, probably all their lives, they don’t understand English irony.”

This raises some obvious questions: 1. What is it in Corbyn’sstatement that sparked Rabbi Sacks’ outburst, and 2. How is it possible that when Corbyn speaks about Zionists, Rabbi Sacks hears‘Jews’?

One possibility is that in Rabbi Sacks’ mind, Jews and Zionists are one and the same. After all, Rabbi Sacks believes that “anti Zionism is the new anti-Semitism.”  The rabbi freely associates ‘Zionists,’ ‘Semites’ and ‘Jews.’  Someone should remind the rabbi that the suggestion that  ‘Jews’ and Zionists are somehow the same might fall within the  IHRA Working Definition of Antisemitsm. According to the definition, manifestations of anti-Semitism “might include the targeting of the state of Israel, conceived as a Jewish collectivity.” In his interpretation of Corbyn’s words, Rabbi Sacks seems to expand the term ‘Zionists’ into meaning ‘Jewish collectivity.’ I am afraid that our ex-chief rabbi may have fallen into the IHRA trap, somethingyou might expect from a Talmudic Jewish scholar but not from an Oxford graduate.

The truth of the matter is that Corbyn has managed to touch the most sensitive Jewish collective nerve. In Corbyn’s universalist egalitarian offering there is no room for tribal exceptionalism. InCorbyn’s universe, Jews are just ordinary people and not God’s chosen people. Corbyn’s ‘for the many not the few’ doesn’t conform to chosenism, Jewish or identitarian. But we can see that thisuniversalist perception of the ‘many’ is interpreted by British Jewish leadership as a casus belli – a call for a war. Corbyn’s reference to Zionists’ ‘lack of British irony’ touched the rawest Jewish nerve. He stumbled upon the Jewish ‘assimilation complex.’

Since the emancipation of European Jewry, a 19th century political transition, Jews have been struggling to define their identity and role in the wider society.  Emancipation invited assimilation, it offered Jews the ability to become an indistinguishable part of the ‘many,’ but this transformative shift would have entailed a loss of Jewish identity. This dilemma is known as the ‘Jewish Question.’ Zionism was initially an attempt to resolve the Jewish question and the assimilation dilemma. It offered Jews the ability to be ‘people like all other people’ but in a different place. Zionism promised to take the Jews away while allowing Jews to assimilate, although as a distinct nation amongst nations.  Zionism gave Jews a way to resolve the tension between assimilation and preservation. The Jews were savedthe danger of integrating into their host nations and allowed them to preserve many if not most of their cultural traits, as Israel proveson a daily basis.

The Jewish fear of assimilation is not a secret. Golda Meir who served as Israel’s Prime Minister at the time of October War (1973), believed that Jews who assimilate are essentially partners to the Nazis, since through assimilation they are exterminating the continuation of the Jewish people. For Meir, mixed marriages, and not the Arabs, were the greatest danger to the Jewish people. With Meir’s anti assimilationist view in mind, it is clear why Corbyn’s traditional socialist view of ‘the many’ poses an existential danger to those who insist upon being ‘the few.’ Corbyn’s well meaning invitation to the Jews and everyone else to fully integrate into British society  is interpreted  by Zionist Jews as a threat of extermination (to use Golda Meir’s loadedterminology).

Rabbi Sacks’ reaction, however, takes us to a new level in our understanding of the Zionist mindset. The rabbi actually accused Corbyn of implying that “Jews are not fully British.” But that was not what Corbyn said or implied. He suggested that “Zionists” are not exactly British, a statement that poses no problem for most Zionists since they openly and voluntarily swear allegiance to another state, one that is nationalist, racist and expansionist and shares few, if any, values with Britain or the West.

In order to grasp Rabbi Sacks’ recent outburst we may have to appeal once again to the famous French psychoanalyst Jacques Lacan’s astuteobservation:“unconscious is the discourse of the Other.” The unconscious, according to Lacan, is the fear that the Other, in this case, the gentile, the humanist or shall we say Corbyn and the Brits see you truly. It is the tormenting thought that the Goy may be able to detect the lie. It is the unbearable anxiety that the Brits know that British Zionists aren’t exactly Brits, they are deeply devoted to another state and its foreign interests, they never assimilated and do not plan to assimilate in the near future. The Lacanian unconscious is the fear that a Goy may stand up one day and decide to call a spade a spade or, way more a disturbing, refer to a celebrity ex-chief rabbi as a  “far right extremist,” as Trade Union activist Eddie Dempsey suggests in the video below.


(5) Palestinian Arab MPs in Israel back Corbyn

From: Sadanand, Nanjundiah (Physics and Engineering Physics) []

'With the Netanyahu government ramping up the racism, our struggle for survival is more precarious than ever.'

Palestinian Arab MPs in the Knesset commend Jeremy Corbyn for his 'longstanding solidarity with all oppressed peoples around the world'

Sun 2 Sep 2018

The Guardian,


As Palestinian Arab MPs in Israel, we salute Corbyn as a champion of peace and justice

As members of the Knesset, the Israeli parliament, representing our fellow Palestinian Arab citizens of the state of Israel and Jewish supporters of peace and democracy, we are writing to express our solidarity with Jeremy Corbyn, leader of the Labour party in the United Kingdom. Palestinian Arabs constitute about a fifth of Israel's citizenry. As such, we have a deep understanding of the vulnerability that many minority communities feel, in the UK and around the world. We respect the vigilance with which minority groups monitor the actions and statements of their local leaders, to ensure that their rights are not infringed upon, and to defend their members from unwarranted attacks on the basis of their group identity.

Palestinian citizens of Israel have yet to experience a single day of equality, de jure or de facto - to say nothing of the millions of Palestinians under military occupation in the West Bank, under siege in the Gaza Strip, and the 6 million in exile abroad, prevented from returning to their homeland simply because they are not Jews. As part of the Palestinian people, this has been our lived experience of the Zionist movement since day one.

In the Knesset, in the streets, and on the world stage, we Palestinian parliamentarians have always argued that it is not possible for any ethno-state, Jewish or otherwise, to also be a state that guarantees equality to all its citizens; for the state of Israel to be both Jewish and democratic. Now Benjamin Netanyahu has proved that we were right all along, by passing the constitutional nation-state law, which explicitly raises the rights of Jewish people to paramount status, downgrades the Arabic language and eclipses any mention of equal rights, regardless of race or religion.

Emboldened by the rise of far-right forces in the US and other parts of the world, the Netanyahu government has made it abundantly clear that Palestinians will never have a state of their own, and that they will never be allowed equality inside Israel. Emboldened by Netanyahu's ultra-nationalism, Israeli racists are stepping up their violent vigilante attacks on Palestinian people, putting the spirit of the nation-state law into practice.

Incredibly, instead of taking that government to task for its unadulterated racism, the British political class ignores the Palestinian historical plight, and attacks and abuses the British and European leader who vocally supports the Palestinian cause of peace and equality. With the Netanyahu government ramping up the racism, our struggle for survival is more precarious than ever. But while we focus locally, defending what's left of our ever-diminishing rights, we feel that we must speak out now and register our repugnance at these recent attempts to complete our erasure, by forbidding within the UK Labour party any mention by name of the forces allayed against the Palestinian cause.

As long as efforts to curb anti-Jewish sentiment in the UK are focused on combating the disparagement of Jews merely for their membership in a minority group, they have our full support. But when some try to force the Labour party into using as its litmus test a definition of antisemitism that goes far beyond anti-Jewish animus to include anti-Zionism, we must raise our voices and decry these efforts.

We commend Jeremy Corbyn for his decades of public service to the British people, and for his longstanding solidarity with all oppressed peoples around the world, including his unflinching support for the Palestinian people. We stand in solidarity with Jeremy Corbyn and we recognise him as a principled leftist leader who aspires for peace and justice and is opposed to all forms of racism, whether directed at Jews, Palestinians, or any other group.

Ahmad Tibi MP Deputy speaker of parliament, Joint List/Arab Movement for Change Masud Ganaim MP Joint List/United Arab List

Yousef Jabareen MP Joint List/Democratic Front for Peace and Equality

Jamal Zahalka MP Joint List/National Democratic Assembly

On behalf of all 13 members of the Knesset who are part of the Joint List

US cuts to Palestinians stir existential fears in JordanJordan views the prospect of absorbing its entire Palestinian refugee population as a threat to its demographic balance By Jonathan Gorvett, Asia Times, August 29, 2018 , Friday's announcement by the Trump administration that it was slashing $200 million in aid to the Gaza Strip and West Bank was only the latest in a series of moves targeting relief for displaced Palestinians and their descendants. For Jordan - home to millions of Palestinian refugees - there is growing concern these developments could have profound implications at home. The US moves "raise existential fears," Amman-based political commentator and columnist Osama al-Sharif told Asia Times. "The Palestinian refugee issue is something that touches major sensitivities on all sides of the political divide." Some fear the cuts in funding to refugees is but the first step in dismantling their refugee status, removing the Palestinians' right of return to their ancestral homes - now in Israeli-controlled territory - and irrevocably shifting the demography of the kingdom Wishing away five million

Since 1948, when advancing Israeli tanks first pushed columns of Palestinians to flee across the Allenby Bridge into Jordan, these displaced people and their descendants have been a major presence in the kingdom.

Whole suburbs of the capital, Amman, have formed out of the camps set up to house them, while many Palestinians have gone on to become important leaders in business and commerce.

Following the deadly events of Black September in 1970, when the Jordanian military moved to expel the Palestinian Liberation Organization from its territory, the kingdom has managed a delicate political balance between ethnic Palestinians and indigenous Jordanians.

As refugees, the ethnic Palestinians have also continued to press their right of return to their former homes - and those they inherited from their parents and grandparents.

Since 1948, those refugees - and the many who have joined them since - have enjoyed the support of the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine (UNRWA).

Now catering to 5.3 million registered refugees in Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, the Gaza Strip, the West Bank and East Jerusalem, UNRWA provides education, health, micro-finance and community services across this wide geography.

Yet now, in its 70th year, it is facing a profound crisis.

Its biggest donor - the US - has embarked on some major policy shifts in how it deals with the Palestinians and the UN.

Last Friday's announcement from Washington was part of that shift, as was the Trump administration's decision in January to freeze $60 million of its funding to UNRWA, while seeking "a way to better manage" the agency's budget and finances.

In July, a number of US Republicans introduced a bill to Congress aimed at severely restricting UNRWA's beneficiaries, by limiting aid to those who fled Mandate Palestine during the original 1948 exodus - roughly 40,000 people. That would cut out the generations born into refugee camps in Jordan and the wider Middle East, as well as those Palestinians who fled their lands during subsequent wars.

The Republican proposal was soon followed by a report in Foreign Policy magazine that suggested President Trump's Middle East czar, Jared Kushner, and his colleague Jason Greenblatt actively wanted to disrupt UNRWA.

The plan further envisioned revoking the refugee status of Jordan's 2.17 million-strong Palestinian population, effectively forcing the kingdom to submerge those numbers into its own population.

While the Jordanian government subsequently denied such a request had been made, the report touched a nerve in the kingdom and the proposal was widely lambasted in the local press.

It also triggered a response from UNRWA chief Pierre Krahenbuhl, who told the Associated Press on August 24: "One cannot simply wish five million people away."

Economic strains


(6) Jews and Gentiles, by Gilad Atzmon

By Gilad Atzmon

Sept 11, 2018

Early Zionism was a significant and glorious moment in Jewish history; a moment of dramatic epiphany fueled by self-loathing. The early Zionists promised to save the Jews from the Jew and to liberate the Jew from the Jews. They were disgusted by the Diaspora non-proletarian urban Jewish culture which they regarded as parasitic.  They promised to bond the new Hebrews with labour and soil. They were convinced thatthey could transform what they saw as a greedy capitalist into a new ‘Israelite hard working peasant.’  They believed that they could make the ‘international cosmopolitan’ into a nationalist patriot, theybelieved that they knew how to convert Soros into a kibbutznik: they were certain that it was within their capacity to make Alan Dershowitz into a Uri Avneri and Abe Foxman into a peacenik. They promised to make Jews into people like all other people while failing to realize that no other people really want to resemble others.

Zionism has been successful on many fronts. It managed to form a Jewish state at the expense of the indigenous people of Palestine. The Jewish state is a wealthy ghetto and one which is internationally supported. But Israel is a state like no other. It is institutionally racist and murderous.  It begs for American taxpayers’ money despite being filthy rich.  Sadly, Zionism didn’t solve the Jewish problem, it just moved it to a new location. More significantly, not only didZionism fail to heal the Jews as it had promised to do, it actually amplified the symptoms it had vowed to obliterate.

Accordingly, the IHRA Working Definition of Antisemitsm should be regarded as a Zionist admission that the task of making Jews people like all other people has been a complete failure. No other people have so intensely and institutionally engaged in the suppression of other people’s freedom of speech. Jewish and Zionist bodies work openly and in concert to silence every possible criticism of their state. The real reason for the fight to make the IHRA definition law is that the Zionist position on antisemitism is indefensible.  If theJews need a special definition of hatred against them (as opposed to a definition of hatred that includes hatred of any people based on race or religion) it proves that, at least in the eyes of the Zionists who push for the definition, Jews are somehow different.

In addition, and for quite some time, history laws and regimes of correctness have been employed to block our access to the Jewish past. This is paradoxical given the fact that the Zionist project is a historically driven adventure: while Zionists often claim their right to self determination on their so-called ‘historical land,’ no one else is allowed to critically examine the Jewish historical past. The Jewish past is, instead, what Jews consider to be their past at a given moment, and as the Israeli historian Shlomo Sand suggests, this so called ‘narrative’ is often an ‘invention.’  No one is permitted to look into the validity of claims made about Jewish participation  in the slave trade. Gentiles are not entitled to look into the role of Jewish Bolsheviks in some colossal communist crimes. The Nakba is legally isolated by walls of Israeli legislation. And it is axiomatic that no one may freely engage in critical thinking on any topic that is even tangentially related to the holocaust. For my suggestion that Jews should self reflect and attempt to understand what it was that led to the animosity against them in the 1930s, I am castigated by some Jewish ethnic activists as a holocaust denier.

French philosopher Jean-Francois Lyotard taught us that history claims to tell us ‘what happened’ but in most cases it actually does the opposite: it is there to conceal our collective shame. To suppresstheir shame, Americans build holocaust museums in every American city rather than explore their own slave holding past. Rather than dealwith their dark imperial history, the Brits allocated a large part of their Imperial Wars Museum to a Holocaust Memorial. Both American and British holocaust museums fail to address the shameful fact that both countries largely blocked their gates to European Jewish refugeesfleeing the holocaust. According to Lyotard, the role of the true historian is to unveil the shame, removing layer after layer of suppression. This painful process is where history matures into ethical awareness. And then, there is no examination of responsibility for historical wrongs in the Zionist narrative, for the notion of shame, that instigated the Early Zionist ideology, is totally foreign to Zionist culture and politics.

Israel not only couldn’t be bothered to build a Nakba museum: it does not even acknowledge the Nakba. Zionists didn’t express remorse that their Jewish state deployed snipers to hunt Palestinian protestors, killing hundreds and wounding thousands of them.

Neither Zionists nor Israelis feel the need to find excuses for the fact that their laws are racist: Palestinian Israeli citizens are 7th class citizens and the rest of the Palestinians who live in Israeli controlled territories are locked up in open air prisons. Zionism doesn’t have to deal with shame because shame involves uncannyintrospection, it entails humility, ordinariness.   Unlike the Americans and the Brits who made other people’s suffering into their empathy pets, the Zionists, the Israelis and Jews in general are clearly happy to celebrate the primacy of Jewish suffering while making sure everyone else adheres to this principle.  Zionismskillfully put into play the means that suppress criticism all together. But by doing so, Zionism essentially blinded its followers to its own crimes, and it put an end to the dream to become people like all other people.

Although Zionism was an apparatus invented to fix the Jews, to make them ordinary, it had the opposite effect. It made it impossible for its followers to integrate into the rest of the nations as a people amongst people. While Zionism was born to obliterate choseness, as it was practiced it was hijacked by the most problematic form of  Jewish exceptionalism. Interestingly enough, today, just ahead of the Jewish new year, Haaretz revealed that 56% of Israeli Jews see themselves as chosen. I guess the rest see themselves as exceptional.

If some Zionists out there are still committed to the original Zionist dream, then owning the shame that is attached to the Zionist sin is probably the way forward. Because as things stand at the moment, the only public figure who insists upon seeing Jews as people like all other people and actually act upon it is, believe it or not, Jeremy Corbyn.

-- Peter Myerswebsite: