Mick Davis

Left-wing criticism is not right

By Miriam Shaviv, December 20, 2010

What is really behind the objections to Jewish Leadership Council chief Mick Davis's criticism of Israel? Is it what he said? To whom he said it? Or is the real issue, perhaps, who said it?

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I stand by my criticisms

By Isi Leibler, December 17, 2010

In these pages last week, Jonathan Freedland accused me of indulging in a "viciously personal" attack on, and misrepresenting the views of, Mick Davis.

Let me begin with a clarification. My source was the Jewish Chronicle itself, which summarised Davis's remarks by stating: "One of British Jewry's most senior leaders this week shattered a long-standing taboo by publicly criticising Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu over the peace process, voicing moral reservations about some of Israel's policies and calling for criticism of Israel to be voiced freely throughout the community."

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Davis row 'sideshow' says Sacks

By Simon Rocker, December 10, 2010

The Chief Rabbi, Lord Sacks, has said that controversy over UJIA leader Mick Davis's criticisms of Israel is "the wrong debate" which distracts from the real issue.

Lord Sacks had previously made only a brief statement, saying there was "much to be gained" from honest debate over Israel as long as it came with unshakeable commitment.

But he has now changed tack in an essay on last week's Torah portion, published on the United Synagogue website.

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Misplaced shots at true Zionist

By Jonathan Freedland, December 9, 2010

Nearly a month has passed and the fallout keeps falling. The episode that future historians of Anglo-Jewry will surely dub "The Mick Davis Affair" goes on and on, as supporters and critics of the chairman of the UJIA argue ferociously about his right to speak, his motives and his judgment following the remarks he made about Israel and the diaspora at a public meeting in London in mid-November.

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Mouth open and foot put in

By Geoffrey Alderman, December 6, 2010

No one of any intelligence can dispute the right of Mr Mick Davis, as a private individual, to say - in public and within reason- whatever he likes about anything he feels the need to say anything he likes about. But if, in public, Mr Davis - the head of UJIA - chooses to unburden himself of certain prejudices to which he has succumbed concerning the state of Israel, its government and the proceedings of its parliament, he runs certain risks.

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Mick Davis is 'using our opponents' language'

December 2, 2010

Ron Prosor, Israel's ambassador to the UK, this week struck back at UJIA chairman Mick Davis over his outspoken comments on Israel, accusing him of using language "straight from our opponents' lexicon", calling much of his criticism "unwarranted" and urging British Jews to take greater pride in the country.

In an article in today's JC, Mr Prosor sprang to the defence of Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, accused by the UJIA leader of lacking the courage to advance the peace process.

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A harmonious choir of liberal conformism

By Emanuele Ottolenghi, November 26, 2010

As the saying goes, you should practice what you preach - not what emerged from the recent panel discussion between Peter Beinart, former editor of the US liberal weekly the New Republic and recent heir to the late Tony Judt's critique of Zionism, Guardian columnist Jonathan Freedland, and Mick Davis, chairman of the Jewish Leadership Council.

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It is our obligation to speak against injustice

By Lord Janner, November 25, 2010

Israel is a democratic State - as is Britain. But that does not mean I agree with all the policies of either government. Indeed, in Britain, I am an active parliamentarian in an opposition party. And regrettably, there are many policies of Israel's government with whichI also disagree.

Some 13 years ago, I spent time in the Arab Israeli town of Sakhnin. There, I made true and lasting friends with some of the most honourable Israelis. They regarded themselves as proud Arab citizens of Israel. What is currently occurring with the Arab population of sovereign Israel is of deep concern.

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Israel is only ours by virtue of our conduct

By Jonathan Wittenberg, November 25, 2010

I welcome Mick Davis' courage and comments. They come from a man deeply committed to Israel.

We worry lest the Jewish state cease to exist because of a military defeat. More recently we've become concerned Israel may no longer be Jewish because of demographic factors. But it is also possible that Israel ceases to be a 'Jewish' state for ethical reasons, because it fails to remain faithful to the 3000-year-old ethical traditions of Judaism.

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Mick Davis: the fallout from his Israel comments

By Lord Kalms, November 25, 2010

The JLC may be self-appointed, but even self-appointed leaders should try to speak and behave like leaders. Mick Davis's recent comments show a startling lack of leadership and sense.

Everybody is entitled to their opinion but can anybody really hold a straight face and say the UK Jewish community is unwilling to criticise Israel? Most of us see no lack of debate.

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