Anti-semitic Tonges are wagging

November 24, 2016 22:53

Liberal Democrat peer Baroness Tonge, a politician who in the past has been known to make a number of distinctly shifty comments on Israel (including stating that, if she lived there, she'd be a suicide bomber - a comment for which she refused to apologise despite its undoubted bad taste and likelihood of offending those civilians of Israel that live their daily lives under a near constant hail of Qassam rockets and the ever-present threat of suicide attacks), has been wagging her tongue on the subject of the Middle Eastern state once again - and looks set to create just as much outrage as she usually does.

Though she recognises Israel's honourable and impressive attempts to help the earthquake-hit Haitians, pointing out that the country is "to be commended for their fantastic response to the Haitian earthquake," her thoughts on the ridiculous claims that IDF rescue teams harvested organs from victims are extremely misguided and offensive. "To prevent allegations such as these — which have already been posted on YouTube — going any further, the IDF and the Israeli Medical Association should establish an independent inquiry immediately to clear the names of the team in Haiti," she says. Is she unaware that these claims started life on websites that in many cases don't even try to disguise their rabid hatred of Jews, Judaism and the Jewish state? Has she not heard of blood libel, the centuries-old accusation made by just about anyone who seeks to destroy Jews and Jewish communities, of which the recent allegations of organ harvesting are simply the most modern version?

By stating that Israel needs to investigate the claims, she suggests only that the allegations are legitimate when in fact they are nothing more than a spectacularly offensive and ridiculous example of anti-semitism. As Ed Fordham, LibDem candidate for Hampstead and Kilburn points out, "It’s abhorrent that anyone should suggest that something as perverse and sick as this should be investigated." (We'll just have to hope this is his true and heart-felt opinion on the matter and that he's not just saying it because there's a healthy Jewish community in what he hopes will become his constituency).

Meanwhile, party leader Nick Clegg refuses to discipline the peer; though a spokesperson admits that "we understand why the idea would be offensive to the Jewish community," obviously making the all-too-common mistake of assuming the Jewish community and Israel are one and the same. When disaster struck Haiti, many of the world's nations came together and worked side-by-side to save lives. It was not a time for individual nations to achieve glory, but a time when humanity in general earned praise - for that reason, Baroness Tonge's statements are offensive not only to Israelis and Jews, but to everybody who donated money or physical help to Haiti.

In the past, there has been a question over whether Baroness Tonge is an anti-semite - an accusation regularly made against her; but those that defend her have argued persuasively that she was merely expressing views and opinions to which she is entitled. However, whatever her views on ethnic groups, I do not believe that she is stupid enough to make comments like this without understanding the anti-semitic overtones of what she says - therefore it seems she may have confirmed that her accusers were correct all along.

(By the way, if you click on Nick Clegg's name in the paragraph before last, you will be whisked as though by magic off to his very own homepage where you can find details allowing you to contact him - so you can tell him what you think of Baroness Tonge's comment and encourage him to withdraw her party whip. Please do!)

November 24, 2016 22:53

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