Is this museum of tolerance being intolerant?

By Danny Rich, June 25, 2009

On a recent trip to Israel with my teenage son, I stopped at the Mamila (Muslim) cemetery, which I have always walked through en route from the headquarters of the World Union of Progressive Judaism in King David Street to my cousins’ home near Meah Shearim.

“When I was on my shnat programme, we had an interfaith project to clean up this cemetery. My friends and I would come but the Arab boys and girls rarely turned up,” remarked my 18-year-old.


Patriotism - an unrequited love

By David Aberbach, June 25, 2009

A recent Gallup and Coexist Foundation poll shows that most British Muslims are patriotic and loyal to Britain, and respectful of its institutions, to a far greater degree than the general population, whose members wrongly tend to associate them with fanaticism and terror.


Holocaust deniers: we’ll take your ads please!

By Stephen Pollard, June 18, 2009

How would you react if, on your way to work, you were confronted by a series of adverts from David Irving, telling you to look at his website for ‘The Truth’, and urging you to find out what is really happening in the world from the only truly reliable source: himself.

You’d — at the very least — wonder why Transport for London considered it appropriate to accept adverts from an antisemitic propagandist. Not, of course, that a public body such as TfL would ever accept such advertising.

But that’s, to all intents and purposes, what TfL has now done.


How a movie trailer cured my horror fantasy

By John Nathan, June 18, 2009

I vividly remember my first Nazi. I was sitting in my living room at about the age of 10. And, though this Nazi’s appearance was on my TV screen, I am not talking about an Anton Diffring, “Achtung, schweinhund”, British Second-World-War movie character. This was the real thing. I was watching footage of the liberation of Bergen-Belsen. The film was overlaid with Richard Dimbleby’s famous eye-witness radio broadcast. I watched as well-fed Germans lifted dead bodies by their spindly arms.


No Muslim should deny Holocaust

By Mohammed Amin, June 18, 2009

Last month, on a beautiful, sunny day, I visited Auschwitz with five other members of the Muslim-Jewish Forum of Greater Manchester. In the trees, the birds were singing — which felt wrong. In a place that is now a monument to the evil of which man is capable, I felt that cold rain or snow should be pouring out of a dark sky.


Bibi’s red lines are not thought through

By Jenni Frazer, June 18, 2009

Netanyahu’s speech on Sunday night anything more than posturing, or is there, as they say in Israel, real “tachlis” in his approach to the Palestinians?

Many commentators are unsure. The approach, they say, is vintage Bibi: a lot of fancy phrases with not much substance at the bottom.
The problem appears to be that while Mr Netanyahu’s “red lines” — in particular, extremely limited sovereignty for the Palestinians — appear to have played well inside his government, not a lot of thought appears to have been given as to how they translate into action.


Who cares if the Arabs accept Israel as the state of the Jews?

By Alon Pinkas, June 18, 2009

On the face of it, Prime Minister Netanyahu’s insistence that the Palestinians recognise Israel as a Jewish state seems like political tactic.

Failure to recognise Israel as a Jewish state, he could argue, would indicate that the Palestinians were not serious about an agreement. On the other hand, recognition would make his acceptance of a future Palestinian state something of a quid pro quo.


A dupe, not a villain

By Sir Martin Gilbert, June 17, 2009

Was Rudolf Kasztner a traitor to the Jewish people, who saved a few friends while allowing more than 400,000 Jews to be deported to Auschwitz, knowing their fate, but refusing to warn them? Films, plays, books and articles portray his actions in this way.

The truth is very different. Kasztner was not a villain, but a victim, who was cruelly deceived by the mastermind of mass murder, Adolf Eichmann.


Kid’s TV or strictly come trancing

By Simon Round, June 11, 2009

For those of you who haven’t watched much children’s TV recently, it has changed. When I was growing up, we were grateful for a half-hour of Bill and Ben or a few minutes of Magic Roundabout in grainy black-and-white before bedtime. Back then, children’s TV accounted for, at most, an hour a day. In between, we were forced to fill in the time by listening to records, playing with toys or watching the test card.


Radical Islamists must be exposed, not invited to tea

By Paul Richards, June 11, 2009

One of the bravest things I have witnessed is the stand taken by ex-Cabinet Minister Hazel Blears against political Islam. As her adviser, I saw first-hand the pressures on her to sit round the table with groups whose political outlook was the diametric opposite of her beliefs in pluralist democracy, rights for minorities and equality for women. She consistently stood firm.