Liberal Democrat Member of Parliament for Bradford East
Some of us do not believe what our politicians say especially when the subject is Israel’s behaviour – its ongoing colonization of the occupied West Bank for the purpose of making peace impossible except, perhaps, on terms which require the Palestinians to surrender to Zionism’s will. The responses of some Jewish supporters of Israel right or wrong to one British MP who did dare to tell the truth illustrate why most politicians throughout the Western world won’t. That’s yesterday’s story but I am driven to comment by the hypocrisy on display, hypocrisy which takes chutzpah to wild extremes.
For those readers who might not be fully familiar with chutzpah, let’s begin with a definition of it.
Chutzpah is a Talmudic word that means many similar things, chief among them being shameless audacity, impudence and arrogance, each and all laced with incredible self-righteousness.
In the context of the conflict in and over Palestine that became Israel, chutzpah represents an Israeli (Jewish) way of saying to the world without actually saying it something like: “We know we shouldn’t have done this. We know it’s wrong. But we’ve done it because we also know there’s nothing you can do about it.”
David Ward MP signing the Book of Commitment
Sunday 27 January is Holocaust Memorial Day and this year marks the 68th anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz concentration camp where more than one million people, mostly Jews, died. As this day approached, the Holocaust Educational Trust placed a Book of Commitment in the House of Commons to give MPs the chance to sign it and honour those who were slaughtered during the Nazi holocaust and subsequent other genocides, and commit themselves to encouraging constituents “to work together to combat prejudice and racism today.”Among those who signed the book and pledged his commitment (I’d be somewhat surprised if there was a single available MP who didn’t sign) was David Ward, the Liberal Democratic member for Bradford East, a 59 year-old new comer to the House, elected in 2010.
On his web site he then said this:
Having visited Auschwitz twice – once with my family and once with local schools – I am saddened that the Jews, who suffered unbelievable levels of persecution during the Holocaust, could within a few years of liberation from the death camps be inflicting atrocities on Palestinians in the new State of Israel and continue to do so on a daily basis in the West Bank and Gaza.
Then, in an update after he was condemned by his party and reviled by Jewish supporters of Israel right or wrong, he added this:
For my entire political career I have fought prejudice. I have just returned from Bradford’s Holocaust Memorial event where people across cultures and faiths joined together to say, “We bear witness to the horrors of the Holocaust and will never forget its lessons.”
In the words of the Holocaust survivor, Elie Wiesel, as quoted in the booklet Holocaust Memorial Day – Learning Lessons from the past to create a safer, better future, I swore never to be silent whenever human beings endure suffering and humiliation. We must always take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented.
The response of Jon Benjamin, chief executive of the Board of Deputies of British Jews, included this: “We are outraged and shocked at these offensive comments about Jewish victims of the Holocaust and the suggestion that Jews should have learned a lesson from the experience.”
If that means the Jews have nothing to learn from the Nazi holocaust – the slaughter of Jews and others by Europeans NOT Arabs or other Muslims – I am more than amazed.
It was, however, the response of Karen Pollock, chief executive of the Holocaust Educational Trust that took my breath away. She said she was “deeply saddened” that the MP had “deliberately abused the memory of the Holocaust.”
In my view that’s chutzpah taken to its wildest extreme. Why?
David Ward MP lighting a candle at a Holocaust Memorial event in Bradford
There is no power on Planet Earth that has used and abused the obscenity of the Nazi holocaust more than Zionism.It has used the guilt of Europeans and the West as a whole to blackmail politicians and the mainstream media into silence on the matter of Zionism’s crimes and justify everything it did and does in defiance of international law and a string of UN Security Council resolutions.
I sent the following e-mail to MP David Ward:
“You have my utmost respect and admiration, not only for your truth telling but for refusing to back down under fire, including fire from your own party which, like all others and the mainstream media, is terrified of offending Zionism.”
At the time I sent my message to him, he had apparently received 80 unsolicited supportive e-mails and only two from detractors.
But he must watch his back. He won his election to the House of Commons by the narrow margin of 365 votes. It will be interesting to see if he becomes a target for an organized Zionist campaign to defeat him at the next election.