Stephen Pollard

The local nick

By Stephen Pollard, February 22, 2011

From the incomparable Richard Littlejohn today:

As I write, Sky is reporting that protesters have set fire to a police
station in Tripoli. That’s nice for them. They’re lucky they can find a
police station to set fire to. Our local nick in North London shut up
shop donkey’s years ago.


The man who saved the Grand National (Daily Express)

By Stephen Pollard, February 21, 2011

I have a piece in today's Express about Cyril Stein. It's here.


The real big society

By Stephen Pollard, February 14, 2011

Writing about the Big Society (cringe-makingly awful name for an important and good modus operandi), Ben Brogan hits the nail on the head:

[T]he combined might of Labour’s useful idiots in the voluntary and
charitable sector...are neither volunteers nor charitable – they are
paid and their money comes not from individuals but the state. No
wonder they snap any time a hand reaches to turn off the tap.


Prosor named as UN Ambassador

By Stephen Pollard, February 13, 2011

The Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs confirmed today that the current Israeli Ambassador to the UK, Ron Prosor, is to be the new Ambassador to the UN.

His replacement in London will be Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's current National Security Adviser, Uzi Arad.

The appointment of a UN Ambassador has been a running sore within the coalition as successive candidates have turned it down, some publicly. Other suggested names are said to have caused friction between the PM and the Foreign Minister, Avigdor Lieberman.


Tzipi Livni the clear star of Herzliya

By Stephen Pollard, February 11, 2011

You may have been wondering exactly what Kadima leader Tzipi Livni has been doing for the past 12 months, having apparently spent much of the time on the sidelines of Israeli politics.

The answer, it seems, was sharpening up her vision of what direction Israel should be taking - as her speech to the annual Herzliya conference on Monday demonstrated.


Tzipi Livni: We ALL have a voice on Israel

By Stephen Pollard and Martin Bright, February 11, 2011

EXCLUSIVE: Israel's Opposition leader, Tzipi Livni, has made an unprecedented declaration of support for the call by Mick Davis, chairman of both the UJIA and the executive committee of the Jewish Leadership Council, for a role for the diaspora in discussing Israel's future.

Ms Livni, speaking to the JC, said: "As leaders, we in Israel must take into account the concerns of diaspora Jewry. Israel is strong enough to take criticism from within the family of Jews, who say, ok, we disapprove of Israeli policy, but we stand firm for Israel."


Opera: The Magic Flute

By Stephen Pollard, February 4, 2011

There are few more soul-destroying moments in a theatre than when, moments before the curtain rises, the empty seat in front of you, with its uninterrupted view of the stage, is suddenly empty no more. And it is always the tallest man in the building who comes in last and plonks himself in front of you.

Well, it happens to critics, too. As I was settling into my seat, waiting for Sir Colin Davis to walk into the pit and raise his arms, what must have been not the tallest man, not the two tallest men, but the three tallest men who have ever been seen sat down in the row in front of me.


Guardian's shame

By Stephen Pollard, January 27, 2011

You might be interested in our leader in tomorrow's paper, on the Guardian's handling of the Palestine Papers. 

Here it is in full:

Guardian's shame

As a general rule, it ill behoves one newspaper to attack another.
But there are exceptions to every rule. The Guardian's behaviour this week, even by its own often disreputable standards over Israel, has been simply shocking.


The Day Today lives

By Stephen Pollard, January 26, 2011

Sky News presenter: We're just getting information about how the Bank of England's Monetary Policy Committee voted. With me is Joel Hills, our correspondent. What are we learning, Joel?

Joel Hills: Well, Charlotte, we're learning how the Monetary Policy Committee voted.



Is David Lammy an idiot?

By Stephen Pollard, January 26, 2011

As a season ticket holder at the greatest team the world has ever seen (that's Spurs, of course) I've followed the moves over the Olympic stadium with some horror. I can see the advantages, but we are a North London team. That's our club's DNA.  (And the last thing I want to do is schlep to Stratford when we play.)  

But the behaviour of David Lammy, the local MP, is hilarious. He seems to have missed Campaigning 101 when he was at college, because all he does is throw insults at Daniel Levy, rather than build a case and seek to persuade.


The PA has betrayed people who, er, aren't Palestinian

By Stephen Pollard, January 25, 2011

Never let it be said that the PSC have no sense of
humour. At least I assume this press release, which has just popped into my
inbox, is meant as a joke:


Tuesday 25th January 2011

Scottish Palestine
Solidarity Campaign: Media Release



Guardian twists Erekat quote

By Stephen Pollard, January 24, 2011

Just Journalism has a fascinating post about the Guardian's editing of a quote from Saeb Erekat to fit in with it's editorial line.

Have a read here.


So much for the settlements

By Stephen Pollard, January 24, 2011

JC Contributing Editor Robin Shepherd has a superb post on the so-called Palestine Papers affair.

As he puts it:


So who does deserve a platform?

By Stephen Pollard, January 13, 2011

I have a small piece in tomorrow's paper, on Jewish Book Week's decision to allow the London Review of Books to sponsor a session with Johann Hari and Gideon Levy. Here's what I wrote:

The JC has been proud of its long association with JBW. But one now has to
wonder what it is becoming.


So, who does deserve a platform?

By Stephen Pollard, January 13, 2011

The JC has been proud of its long association with JBW. But one now has to wonder what it is becoming.

Last year a key session was handed over to two fanatical Israel-bashers, Tariq Ali and Mary-Kay Wilmers, editor of the London Review of Books. This year, Gideon Levy is to be joined by the Independent's Johann Hari, whose visceral hatred of Israel makes his colleague Robert Fisk seem like a Zionist in comparison.


The Independent and the execution of the Queen

By Stephen Pollard, January 10, 2011

I'm not sure the phrase 'self-aware' could be applied to the Independent. Today's paper is, to be blunt, disgusting.

Bien pensant opinion has, it seems, already decided - without a shred of conclusive evidence one way or the other - that the man who shot Gabrielle Giffords and murdered the people next to her was driven to act by the rhetoric of Sarah Palin and the Tea Party.


The Blair Hitch Project

By Stephen Pollard, January 7, 2011

As so often, Christopher Hitchens gets to the heart of things:


The BBC's fantasy extremists (Jewish Chronicle)

By Stephen Pollard, January 6, 2011

I have a piece in tomorrow's paper on my experience on Sunday. You can have read it here.