Israel News | Zionism Israel Center | Zionism History | Zionism Definitions | ZioNation | Forum | Zionism FAQ | Maps| Edit

Friday, February 1, 2008

Independent Jewish Voices: Anti-Zionist Tempest in a teapot?

The "Independent Jewish Voices" seems to contain the usual anti-Zionist British Jews, inevitably starting with Jacqueline Rose. It has apparently been bally-hooed far out of proportion to its importance, because any Jew who is opposed to Israel is automatically hailed as a great thinker, and because any such organization, no matter how small, can start a boycott initiative that will earn the attention of the media and alarmed pro-Israel groups.
This group of "liberals" has now degenerated into support for the genocidal reactionary Hamas group. With liberals like that, who needs fascists?
According to this article, Jacqueline Rose describes herself as a "critic of Zionism." In the same way, we might say that Hitler was a "critic of Judaism" and Nero was a "critic of Christianity."
Ami Isseroff

 Last update - 14:36 01/02/2008       
British Jewish group sparks new outrage with condemnation of Gaza blockade
By Saul Sadka
LONDON - A controversial coalition of prominent Jewish activists and academics has reignited controversy in the British Jewish community after taking out an paid advertisement in The Times this week calling for Israel to lift its economic blockade of the Gaza strip and accusing the state of breaching international law.
"Independent Jewish Voices" was formed a year ago and counts Nobel laureate Harold Pinter and actor Stephen Fry among its prominent signatories.
Marxist historian Eric Hobsbawm is also a signatory though neither he nor Fry and Pinter - the groups most recognisable names - signed Wednesday's statement.
The group was formed to provide an alternative to the Board of Deputies of British Jews - a cross communal Jewish organisation dating back to 1760 - who the IJV felt were inauthentically presenting themselves as the exclusive voice of Judaism in Britain. IJV members say that the Board of Deputies refuses to allow criticism of Israel and this presents a unrepresentative picture of Jewish opinion in the U.K.
The statement which appeared on the inside pages of the paper was signed by 250 of the groups members. Entitled "End the siege of Gaza!", the statement condemned Israel's actions in blockading Gaza as a violation of international law, and also called for a halt to Palestinian rocket attacks.
"The collective punishment of the population of Gaza is illegal under international law. We condemn attacks on all civilians including the rocket attacks on the residents of Southern Israel," said the statement.
The statement also called for an end to the blockade and for "both sides to observe a ceasefire."
Feminist academic Jacqueline Rose who describes herself as a "critic of Zionism," is one of the groups principle advocates. She said that the motivation for the statement was in response to the current crisis in Gaza.
"IJV arose partly in response to our sense that bodies in the U.K. who claim to represent British Jewry make statements as though they were speaking for all British Jews. While many of us have a high profile - we are not claiming that we are excluded from the debate - we formed to make it clear that British Jews do not speak with one voice."
The group has views on everything from the right of Norman Finkelstein to speak at the Oxford Union which they support, to the proposed academic and economic boycotts of Israel which members disagree on. Rose says that while the group disagrees over the boycott they "support it being discussed openly, something which regrettably may be illegal in the UK." She argues that "the battle against antisemitism is weakened by its association with criticism of Israel."
Rose says that the network took out the advertisement in The Times rather that what might be seen as its more obvious political home The Guardian to get its message beyond the left wing readership who would generally approve of the group's credo, to a more mainstream audience.
She argues that "Israel must negotiate with the elected Hamas government for there to be any kind of a solution to the rocket fire on the south."
The group caused a media storm following its launch, with a full page advertisement in The Times, a week long discussion on The Guardian's Website and extensive media coverage. However, the group does not take a firm position on the proposed academic and economic boycott of Israel, with some of its members supportive while other are in opposition.
One of its signatories, Tony Greenstein is a trade unionist who has publicly called for a boycott of Israeli goods and is also a member of "Jews for Boycotting Israeli Goods."
A critic of the group, lawyer and academic Anthony Julius, disputed the claim that Israel was in breach of international law.
"It is by no means unarguable that Israel is right to treat Gaza as an enemy territory. It is hard to see on what basis Israel's actions can be seen as a violation and only one or two of the signatories could grapple with issues involved."
Julius argues that the group is "fraying at the edges and has lost some of its membership. It is unable to speak with a coherent voice on any issue, such as the academic boycott of Israel."

Copyright - Original materials copyright (c) by the authors. Originally posted at Please do link to these articles, quote from them and forward them by email to friends with this notice. Other uses require written permission of the author.


Post a Comment

<< Home

Subscribe to
email newsletter for this site and others

Powered by

Feedblitz subcription
To this Blog only

You can receive our articles by e-mail. For a free subscription, please enter your e-mail address:

Preview | Powered by FeedBlitz

Web Logs & Sites

This Site

Zionism & Israel
Zionation Web Log
IMO Web Log (Dutch)

ZI Group
Zionism-Israel Pages
Israël-Palestina.Info (Dutch & English)
Israƫl in de Media
MidEastWeb Middle East News and Views
MidEastWeb Middle East Web Log

Brave Zionism
Israel: Like this, as if
Israel & Palestijnen Nieuws Blog

Friends and Partners
EinNews Israel
Israel Facts
Israel Proud Adam Holland
Middle East Analysis
Irene Lancaster's Diary
Middle East Analysis
Israeli-Palestinian Conflict
Israel Facts (NL)
Cynthia's Israel Adventure
Jeff Weintraub Commentaries and controversies
Meretz USA Weblog
Pro-Israel Bay Bloggers
Simply Jews
Fresno Zionism
Anti-Racist Blog
Sharona's Week
Z-Word Blog
Jewish State
Take A Pen - Israel Advocacy
Zionism on the Web
ZOTW's Zionism and Israel News
Zionism On The Web News
ZOTW's Blogs
Christian Attitudes
Dr Ginosar Recalls
Questions: Zionism anti-Zionism Israel & Palestine
Southern Wolf
Peace With Realism
Sanda's Place
Liberal for Israel
Realistic Dove
Blue Truth
Point of no Return
Christians Standing With Israel
Christians Standing With Israel - Blog

Encylopedic Dictionary of Zionism and Israel
Middle East Encyclopedia
Zionism and its Impact
Zionism & the creation of Israel
Zionism - Issues & answers
Maps of Israel
Christian Zionism Resources
Christian Zionism
Albert Einstein
Gaza & the Qassam Victims of Sderot
Zionist Quotes
Six Day War
Jew Hatred
Learn Hebrew
Arab-Israeli Conflict
International Zionism

Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel
Israel Boycott
Boycott Israel?
Amnesty International Report on Gaza War
Boycott Israel?
Dutch Newspaper Reporting: A Study of NRC Handelsblad
Hamas (Dutch)
Dries van Agt (Dutch)
Isfake lobby

At Zionism On the Web
Articles on Zionism
Anti-Zionism Information Center
Academic boycott of Israel Resource Center
The anti-Israel Hackers
Antisemitism Information Center
Zionism Israel and Apartheid
Middle East, Peace and War
The Palestine state
ZOTW Expert Search
ZOTW Forum

Judaica & Israel Gifts
Jewish Gifts: Judaica:
Ahava Products

Powered by Blogger

Subscribe to
Posts [Atom]

RSS V 1.0

International Affairs Blogs - BlogCatalog Blog Directory