Marcus Dysch

Oona 'united as Team Labour' with Ken

By Marcus Dysch, September 26, 2010

Former MP Oona King has backed Ken Livingstone to regain the London mayoralty after he beat her for the Labour candidacy to take on Boris Johnson.

Mr Livingstone, whose two previous terms as mayor saw him open a rift with the Jewish community, will take on the current Tory incumbent in 2012.

Ms King polled 31 per cent of the vote on her return to the political spotlight. She lost her Bethnal Green and Bow parliamentary seat to George Galloway following an acrimonious campaign in 2005.

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Knickers in a twist

By Marcus Dysch, September 22, 2010

You do sometimes have to wonder what country people such as Na’ama Heller and Brian Gordon think they are living in – Israel? Saudi Arabia? Taliban-ruled Afghanistan?

The revelation – if you’ll pardon the pun – that Marks & Spencer had been urged to remove a lingerie advert from an advertising board next to a Sukkah shop in north west London shocked me.

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Your guide to Jewish campus life

By Marcus Dysch, September 21, 2010

Welcome back to the section which brings you the most comprehensive coverage of Jewish student life – JC On Campus.

As the Jewish calendar turns to 5771, JC On Campus enters its second year in a new home, as part of the Community section.

We will be bringing you the latest news and issues affecting our student community from campuses across the country.

The section is dedicated to representing Jewish students' views on topics from Israel to interfaith and social action to socialising.

Every campus has a unique identity and every Jewish Society offers something different.

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JCC begins demolition

By Marcus Dysch, September 21, 2010

Demolition of a former car showroom to make way for the £50 million Jewish Community Centre for London - British Jewry's biggest ever capital project - is due to begin this month.

Demolition experts will erect hoardings around the old Mercedes showroom on London's Finchley Road before starting the lengthy deconstruction process.

The new 80,000 sq ft JCC will cater for Jews across the religious and political spectrum and is due to open in 2013.

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Hague will be guest at UJIA

By Marcus Dysch, September 21, 2010

Foreign Secretary William Hague has been confirmed as the guest speaker at UJIA's annual fundraising dinner.

Mr Hague will join around 700 people at dinner at the London Hilton hotel in Park Lane, central London, on November 8.

He is also expected to visit Israel that month on his delayed first official visit to the region as Foreign Secretary.

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Operation Embarrass? You bet: Britain's secret war on the Jews

By Marcus Dysch, September 21, 2010

British spies staged covert operations to sabotage Holocaust survivors' attempts to reach Palestine between 1946 and early 1948.

Among the tactics used by the Secret Intelligence Service (SIS) in Operation Embarrass were the bombing of five ships used by potential immigrants, intimidation and the creation of a fake Palestinian defence group.

The British government gave the go-ahead to the campaign to slow illegal immigration into Palestine, provided there was "no risk of casualties being incurred" and no link could be traced back to the government.

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TUC votes to keep up West Bank boycott

By Marcus Dysch, September 17, 2010

The Trades Union Congress has voted to continue its boycott of Israeli goods from West Bank settlements and strengthen its links with the Palestine Solidarity Campaign.

A motion passed at the TUC congress in Manchester on Tuesday stopped short of agreeing to a full boycott of Israel.

The TUC had been expected to extend its boycotts policy and encourage further disinvestment.

The Jewish Leadership Council and Board of Deputies said the rejection of a boycott of all Israeli goods represented a "serious setback for the pro-boycott movement".

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Jonathan Djanogly apologises for spying

By Marcus Dysch, September 17, 2010

A Conservative Justice Minister has apologised and admitted he "over-reacted" by hiring a firm of private investigators to spy on local party members who, he believed, were conspiring against him.

Huntingdon MP Jonathan Djanogly, a member of New London Synagogue, paid detectives more than £5,000 for a covert operation after he was caught up in last year's expenses scandal.

Mr Djanogly, son of businessman and philanthropist Sir Harry Djanogly, a member of Nottingham Hebrew Congregation, denied any wrongdoing.

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Ex-Islamist Ed Husain attacks hate speaker

By Marcus Dysch, September 17, 2010

University vice-chancellors must do more to protect Jewish students from hatred on campuses, according to the director of a counter-extremism think tank.

Ed Husain, co-founder of the Quilliam organisation, was speaking at the Union of Jewish Students' annual campaigns summit.

He attacked appearances on campuses of speakers such as Palestinian academic Azzam Tamimi.

Dr Tamimi is a regular speaker at universities and has told students that he "longs to be a martyr" and believes Israel "must come to an end".

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Bicom scoops Benjamin Netanyahu for annual dinner

By Marcus Dysch, September 17, 2010

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is expected to visit Britain in November, the JC has learned.

Mr Netanyahu will be the keynote speaker at the annual dinner of Bicom, the Israel lobbying organisation, in London on November 1.

But senior Israeli sources refused to confirm that Mr Netanyahu would visit Britain and said any possible plans were not finalised.

A full schedule has not been agreed, but it is thought he is likely to meet his counterpart David Cameron.

No plans have yet been made for Mr Netanyahu to hold other communal meetings.

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US adviser: Israeli-Palestinian talks are a charade

By Marcus Dysch, September 17, 2010

A senior military strategist and former US government adviser has launched a blistering attack on the current Israeli-Palestinian peace talks, deriding the process as a "charade".

Edward Luttwak, a senior associate at the Centre for Strategic and International Studies, in Washington DC, said the "interference of frivolous people" would not bring about peace in the Middle East.

The process was, he said, "a perverse, deeply perverted mechanism that masquerades in humanitarian clothes".

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Locked out of the library

By Marcus Dysch, September 16, 2010

Larry David would struggle to make this up.

You may recall the rather unfortunate story I reported on a few weeks ago regarding the case of Mr Eugene Linder.

This was the gentleman in Switzerland battling against the interminable delaying tactics of the Finnish authorities in an attempt to have his late mother re-interred in Basel.

It seems Mr Linder has now found himself in a subsequent spot of bother closer to home – he has been banned from using his local library in Aarau, between Basel and Zurich.

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Robbers run over victim on Rosh Hashanah

By Marcus Dysch, September 16, 2010

A 57-year-old woman was run over by a gang who stole her car as she returned home from celebrating Rosh Hashanah with friends.

Arriving back at her Hendon home with family members late last Thursday night, she saw two men walking down her driveway. Two other men were sitting in her car.

The woman stood in front of the vehicle but the thieves drove away, knocking her over. The other men ran off.

She suffered a cut knee and bruising and was taken by ambulance to hospital, but was later released. An elderly relative who saw what happened suffered shock.

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TUC vote to extend Israel boycott

By Marcus Dysch, September 14, 2010

The Trades Union Congress has voted to continue its boycott of Israeli goods from West Bank settlements and strengthen its links with the Palestine Solidarity Campaign.

A motion passed at the TUC congress in Manchester this afternoon stopped short of agreeing to a full boycott of Israel.

The TUC had been expected to extend its boycotts policy and encourage further disinvestment.

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New strategy for Labour Friends of Israel

By Marcus Dysch, September 7, 2010

Labour Friends of Israel has appointed a new director to oversee the parliamentary lobby group's work.

Jennifer Gerber replaces former director Luciana Berger, who was elected as an MP for the Liverpool Wavertree constituency in May.

Ms Gerber, from Finchley, north London, is a former director of Progress, a New Labour pressure group promoting radical and progressive politics.

She edited its magazine, for which she has written articles on Israel and antisemitism.

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BA crew: I was fired after pro-Nazi row

By Marcus Dysch, September 7, 2010

An air steward has spoken of his anger after being sacked by British Airways after an incident in which a colleague allegedly shouted antisemitic abuse and glorified the Nazis.

Jean-Paul Van der Velde, whose father survived two concentration camps, was dismissed for misconduct after the row with the fellow crew member in a New York bar. He had worked for BA for 23 years.

He said airline staff had been enjoying a drink during a stopover, but tempers frayed when his colleague became "drunk and aggressive".

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New year treats for Jewish soldiers

By Marcus Dysch, September 7, 2010

Packs of kosher provisions have been delivered to British Jewish troops serving in the armed forces to help them celebrate Rosh Hashanah.

The parcels include dried fruit and honey, powdered chicken soup, toffees and toiletries, and have been sent to locations including Afghanistan and the Falklands.

The Jewish Committee for HM Forces has also reissued the Soldiers' Siddur, for the first time since 1941.

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Child left without school after fight

By Marcus Dysch, September 7, 2010

A mother has withdrawn her sons from their Jewish school following a playground brawl - leaving one of them without a school place and the other re-sitting a year.

Sabine Hazan said she removed her sons from King Solomon High School, in Barkingside, Essex, because she felt their safety could not be guaranteed.

Her 12-year-old son Dan was involved in a fight with a group of boys at the end of last term.

Mrs Hazan, of Finchley, north west London, said the school had failed to treat the incident seriously.

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British mum wins custody battle after eight years

By Marcus Dysch, September 3, 2010

The mother of a girl involved in an eight-year custody battle has spoken of her joy after she and her daughter were allowed to return to Britain from Israel.

She said the emotional and financial strain put on her family by the case, whose legal bills total more than £250,000, had been "absolutely horrendous".

The woman, who is in her late 30s and cannot be identified for legal reasons, left Israel with her one-year-old daughter in 2001 after the breakdown of her marriage to a man she met while living on kibbutz.

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TUC likely to push for full Israel boycott

By Marcus Dysch, September 2, 2010

The Trades Union Congress is expected to call on its members at its annual conference to strengthen opposition to Israel by extending boycotts and encouraging disinvestment.

A motion on Israel and the Palestinians, backed by the GMB, the Fire Brigades' Union, the Public and Commercial Services Union and the Transport Salaried Staffs' Association, is expected to propose a full boycott of Israeli goods.

The four-day conference begins in Manchester on September 13.

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