Fraser -v- UCU: a preliminary response

April 4, 2013 at 5:58 pm (academe, anti-semitism, Judaism, law, Middle East, palestine, Racism, reblogged, unions, zionism)

By David Hirsh

Reblogged from Engage

“When someone is honestly 55% right, that’s very good and there’s no use wrangling. And if someone is 60% right, it’s wonderful, it’s great luck, and let him thank God. But what’s to be said about 75% right? Wise people say this is suspicious. Well, and what about 100% right? Whoever say he’s 100% right is a fanatic, a thug, and the worst kind of rascal.”

(A old Jew of Galicia, from: The Captive Mind, by Czeslaw Milosz)

A co-ordinated campaign by Ronnie Fraser, his lawyers and his witnesses to try to intimidate critics of Israel with an invented accusation of antisemitism would indeed be vile and disgraceful.  This is what the Tribunal thought was happening,  and this explains the unusually intemperate and emotional language employed in its dismissal of Fraser’s case.

David Hirsh

Above: David Hirsh

The Tribunal found against Fraser on everything: on technicalities, on legal argument, and on every significant issue of substance and of fact.  The Tribunal found everything the UCU said in its defence to be persuasive and it found nothing said by Fraser or any of his witnesses to be of any value.  The culture, the practices and the norms inside the union were found to be not antisemitic, either in intent or in effect.  Indeed, everything that Fraser and his witnesses experienced as antisemitic, the Tribunal judged to have been entirely appropriate.  In particular what was appropriate was the way that union staff, rules, structures and bodies operated.  Fraser said that there was a culture in which antisemitism was tolerated but the Tribunal did not accept that even one out of the very many stories that it was told was an indicator of antisemitism.

Instead the Tribunal found that “at heart” the case represented “an impermissible attempt to achieve a political end by litigious means… ” (para 178).  What political end?  The only possible political end is an attempt to defeat or silence campaigns against Israel.  This would certainly be impermissible in an Employment Tribunal, which is rightly concerned with issues such as antisemitism, outlined in the Equalities Act.

Of course the fight against antisemitism is also political.  But this cannot be the kind of politics to which the Tribunal objected.  If it was, then it would find every allegation of racism, sexism or homophobia to be impermissible, because political.  Opposition to antisemitic politics has always been central to campaigns against antisemitism.

The Tribunal makes clear that it meant that Fraser was trying to mobilize a bad-faith allegation of antisemitism in order to silence good-faith critics of Israel when it goes on in the next paragraph: “We are also troubled by the implications of the claim. Underlying it we sense a worrying disregard for pluralism, tolerance and freedom of expression….”  The Tribunal says that Fraser was trying to fool it into outlawing and branding criticism of Israel as antisemitic.  Of course, every racist claims that anti-racists disregard their right to free speech.  True, sometimes the Tribunal appears to veer towards the view that those who complain of antisemitism are simply over-sensitive and lacking in objective judgment.  But the central findings, that this is politics dressed up as litigation, and that this is an attempt to disallow free criticism, are allegations of bad faith.

Anybody who has been following the story within the union will be aware that the response of the Tribunal is precisely the same as the response with which opponents of antisemitism and of the boycott campaign were faced within the union.  The Tribunal backs the union’s way of thinking about antisemitism 100%.  The experience of going to the Tribunal, it turns out, is more of the same experience about which Fraser appealed to the Tribunal in the first place.

Fraser said that the key mode of intimidation in the UCU was a constant allegation of bad faith – the allegation that Jews who say they feel antisemitism are actually lying for Israel.  The Tribunal replied that the Jews who say they feel antisemitism are actually lying for Israel – they are dressing up a political end as a problem of racist exclusion.  In other words, the Tribunal answers that the accusation of bad faith made against Jews who say that they experienced antisemitism is appropriate.  The Tribunal employed The Livingstone Formulation.

Fraser argued that there were a large number of incidents which should be understood as exemplifying a culture whereby antisemitism was accepted as normal within the union.  Fraser called 34 witnesses to tell the Tribunal about the antisemitism which they had seen.   I want to start my own response to the judgment by outlining a number of the incidents which the Tribunal were told about in detail:

In 2006 Ronnie Fraser stood as a delegate to NATFHE conference (a predecessor to UCU).  It was said at the regional meeting that Fraser could not be a delegate because he was a Zionist and therefore a racist.  NATFHE held an investigation and found that this statement had not been antisemitic.

Israel has been relentlessly condemned at every UCU Congress, often by motions to boycott Israel.  There were no motions to boycott any other states.

The Parliamentary Inquiry into Antisemitism reported that the boycott debates were likely to cause difficulties for Jewish academics and students, to exclude Jews from academic life and to have a detrimental effect on Jewish Studies.  UCU responded that these allegations were made to stop people from criticizing Israel.  76 members of the UCU published a critique of the union’s response, but the union took no notice.  John Mann MP told the Tribunal that UCU had been unique among those criticized by the inquiry in its refusal to listen.

Sean Wallis, a local UCU official, said that anti-boycott lawyers were financed by “bank balances from Lehman Brothers that can’t be tracked down”.  Ronnie Fraser asked him whether he had indeed made this antisemitic claim.  Wallis admitted having said it.  But it was Fraser who, for the crime of asking, was found to have violated union rules concerning “rude or offensive communications”.

Gert Weisskirchen, responsible for combating antisemitism for the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) asked the union leadership for a meeting to discuss antisemitism relating to the boycott.  The union did not meet with him.  When 39 union members protested publicly, the union ignored them.

The union invited South African Trade Unionist Bongani Masuku to speak at a pro-boycott conference in London.  Masuku was known to be under investigation by the South African Human Rights Commission for antisemitic hate speech.  Here is an example of what he had said:  “Bongani says hi to you all as we struggle to liberate Palestine from the racists, fascists and Zionists who belong to the era of their friend Hitler!  We must not apologise, every Zionist must be made to drink the bitter medicine they are feeding our brothers and sisters in Palestine”.    Masuku also said  that vigilante action would be taken against Jewish families suspected of having members serving in the Israeli military, and that Jews who continued to stand up for Israel should “not just be encouraged but forced to leave South Africa”  The union ought to have known Masuku’s record.  Ronnie Fraser told the union about Masuku’s record.  Masuku was found guilty in South Africa of hate speech before speaking as a guest of UCU.  And months later, UCU Congress explicitly rejected a motion to dissociate itself from Masuku’s “repugnant views”.

The Activists’ List is an email list hosted by the union.

Ronnie Fraser argued on the list that there was no absolute blockade of Gaza.  In response, another union member said that he was like the Nazis at Theresenstadt.  The union found that there was nothing inappropriate about this comment.

Josh Robinson put together a detailed formal complaint about antisemitic language being employed by union members on the list.   He documented how people who opposed antisemitism on the activists’ list were routinely accused of being: deranged, crazy, nutters; Israeli agents; hysterical; dishonest; twisted; rotten Zionists; less than human; believers in a promised land; motivated by the fairy story of the Old Testament; genocidal; accepting of the murder of innocents; racist; pro-apartheid; supporters of ethnic cleansing; Nazis.  The Holocaust was referred to as an ‘attempted genocide’.   There followed volleys of insults made against those who raised concerns about this description of the Shoah.  The formal complaint was given to Tom Hickey to adjudicate.  Hickey himself, the Tribunal was told, had said that Israel is “more insidious and in some sense almost nastier” than Nazi Germany.  In the end, nobody even bothered to tell Robinson that his complaint had been dismissed.

A number of other people made similarly careful formal complaints.  The union did not once, ever, find that anything complained of was antisemitic.

A significant number of union members resigned over the issue of antisemitism.  Congress voted down a motion to investigate these resignations.  There was no mechanism for counting resignations over antisemitism, and such resignations were instead counted as being because of disagreements over the Middle East.

People who complained about antisemitism in the union were routinely confronted with accusations that they spoke in bad faith.  They were told that they were making it up in order to try to silence criticism of Israel.  They were accused of ‘crying antisemitism’.

In court Sally Hunt, the General Secretary of the union was asked hypothetically:  “If somebody said ‘if you want to understand the Jews, read Mein Kampf’, would that be antisemitic?”  She answered that it would not necessarily be antisemitic.

The Tribunal heard about all these events and, like the union, judged none of them to be evidence of antisemitism.  It said (para 156):

The Claimant is a campaigner. He chooses to engage in the politics of the union in support of Israel and in opposition to activists for the Palestinian cause. When a rugby player takes the field he must accept his fair share of minor injuries….  Similarly, a political activist accepts the risk of being offended or hurt on occasions by things said or done by his opponents (who themselves take on a corresponding risk).

It is unimaginable that a tribunal today would say the same thing to a woman who complained of sexual harassment at work after she chose to wear a tight skirt to the office; or after she had chosen to campaign in favour of women’s rights.  But this is what the Tribunal said to a Jew.

The rugby analogy demonstrates one of the central problems with the approach taken by the Tribunal.  The Tribunal was unable to make the distinction between arguments about Israel and Palestine on the one hand, and evidence of antisemitism on the other.  The result is the position that since Fraser took on the responsibility of defending Israel, then he should expect some antisemitism as part of the “game”.  The Tribunal also mentioned that it had been inappropriate to allow Tom Hickey to sit in judgment over formal claims of antisemitism.  Why?  It says (para 181) that the reason is that he is a “well-known pro-Palestinian activist”.  How insulting is it to “pro-Palestinian activists” to suggest that they are unqualified to judge what is antisemitic and what is not?  Being pro-Palestine should be one thing, being antisemitic should be quite another.  The Tribunal found itself unable to understand the distinction.  The reason why Hickey was an inappropriate judge, as the Tribunal was told, was because he was not good at making the distinction between antisemitism and criticism of Israel, not because he was ‘pro-Palestinian’.

Speaking for myself, I never chose to play Rugby.  I found that my union was considering setting up an exclusion of our Israeli colleagues from UK campuses, so I tried to make arguments against it doing so.  I was, as it were, pushed onto a rugby field.  There, I found myself being outnumbered and repeatedly knocked to the floor by organised forwards.  I was confronted by relentless if usually subtle antisemitic rhetoric, hostility and accusations of bad faith.  I appealed to the union, who was playing the part of the referee.  But the ref said that it was neutral between the two Rugby teams and I should just get on with the game.  But I wasn’t part of a Rugby team and I didn’t want to play.  I only wanted my union to stop with the hatred of Israel and with the antisemitism which came with it.  And when I tried to step out of the Rugby field and say publicly what was going on, I was punished for breaking the rules of the game.

While I’m talking about my own experience, please indulge me while I tell you about a couple of others.   The witnesses told the tribunal about hundreds of incidents, my own happen to be clearest in my memory.

There was a time when I, and a number of others, many of whom eventually gave evidence for Ronnie in front of the Tribunal, were trying to have our voices heard on the Activists’ List.  Most of us, unlike Ronnie, were not particularly ‘pro-Israel’ but were strong critics of Israeli policy and of the occupation.  Indeed some of my own criticism of Israel was so strong, that it was read out to another witness under cross examination as being indistinguishable from the antisemitic rhetoric of which Ronnie complained.  But the witness explained to the Tribunal how it was different.  Nevertheless, if ever we raised the issue of antisemitic rhetoric on the list, we would immediately be denounced for crying antisemitism in bad faith in order to silence criticism of Israel.  It was a difficult time.  We would try and explain what the problem was with the accusations that we supported the genocide of the Palestinians, or that we were racists, or that we were Nazis, and people would respond, immediately, relentlessly and in writing before hundreds of our union colleagues, that we only raised the issue of antisemitism in order to stifle their criticisms of Israel.

We appealed to the moderator of the list.  We said that this was a union space and that it should not be possible to bully us out of it with antisemitic rhetoric.  But the moderator acted as the referee in a tough rugby match between Israel and Palestine, rather than a union official making sure that the union was a safe place for British Jewish Trade Unionists.  One academic who had been particularly active at that time told the Tribunal that he had nearly had a nervous breakdown because of the way he was treated on the activist list.  The Tribunal explicitly praised his evidence, but it did not listen to his evidence and it did not discuss his evidence in its judgment.

One strategy I was minded to adopt at that time was to publish some of the antisemitic material from the list on the Engage website.  There was a closed culture within the union in which antisemitism was never recognised and was never thought to be a problem.  Institutional racism requires a heavy policing of the institutional boundaries to make sure that the values of the external world cannot intrude and the norms of the internal world cannot be seen.

In August 2007 I wrote an email on the activists’ list expressing concern at the antisemitic consequences of the campaign to boycott Israel and arguing that we should be aware that it is usual for antisemitic arguments to be positioned as one side in a legitimate democratic debate.  I was warned by the list moderator for the crime of saying this and told to “be more careful in my choice of language” otherwise I would be excluded from the discussion.  I was also told not to publish anything which appeared on the list.  I responded by saying that I would make no undertaking whatsoever not to publish antisemitic material from the list.  The Tribunal tells this story in its judgment but it chooses to delete the word “antisemitic”.  In para 93 of the judgment it reports: ‘Dr Hirsh responded, stating that he would “make no undertaking whatsoever” not to publish material from the List….’  I, and other critics of antisemitism were indeed excluded from the list while nobody was ever excluded from the list for writing antisemitic things.  Indeed, nothing that happened inside the union was ever judged to be antisemitic.  The Tribunal judge himself asked me whether I broke the rules.  I told him that as a whistleblower, I thought there were two conflicting principles.  The Tribunal chooses not even to consider or to describe this dilemma in its judgment, but to omit the word “antisemitic” from my refusal not to publish material.

I also told the Tribunal that the key mode of intimidation in the union is the relentless, constant accusation of bad faith directed mostly against Jews.   It was normal to suspect Jews of lying if they raised the issue of antisemitism.  When people raise the issue of antisemitism they are not to be believed because really, it is said, they are only trying to silence legitimate criticism of Israel.  In January 2010 I was asked by the union to speak in Brighton on the topic of “Anti-Semitism, the Holocaust and Resistance, Yesterday and Today” on the occasion of Holocaust Memorial Day.  I talked about the record of antisemitism within the union.  Tom Hickey, a union official and academic colleague, in public and in front of the General Secretary, said that everything I had said was a traducement of the truth and … a straightforward lie and the author knows it.  I explained the significance of the relentless accusation of bad faith to the Tribunal.  In their description of the event they write in their judgment: “Mr Hickey responded to Mr Hirsh’s remarks.  He denounced them as unwarranted and false.”  The Tribunal decided not to consider the point about the relentless bad faith allegation.  It  just left it out of its description and out of its deliberation.

The difficulty of explaining what has happened in the union, and what is wrong with the Tribunal’s judgment, is that it is always necessary to descend into detailed stories and analysis of stories.  There is no silver bullet.  Rather there are long and winding complex narratives all of which require interpretation.  There is no short cut to understanding the every-day harshness of being Jewish in the UCU.  I offered just two stories here.  There were 34 witnesses who gave evidence about the culture of antisemitism in the union.  Each told long, complex and nuanced stories.  The Tribunal wrote them off as people “ventilating their opinions” (para 149).   A very large number of incidents from over the years are documented and explained on the Engage website.

Whatever it is that Ronnie Fraser suffered within the union, he has now suffered doubly in the Tribunal.  That which he experienced as antisemitic was not only judged by the union, but now also by the Tribunal, to be not antisemitic; further, it was also judged to be entirely appropriate.  Ronnie complained that he was constantly accused of speaking in bad faith.  The Tribunal responded that those who raised the issue of antisemitism did indeed speak in bad faith, chose to play a rough game, and got what was coming to them.

The old Romanian Communist Party used to win elections with 100% of the vote.  Just this fact is enough to tell us that the process could not have been fair.  The University and College Union, and now the Tribunal, have judged that nothing that ever happened in the union was antisemitic.  Not one thing.  Zero.  Given the history of antisemitism in Europe and on the left, and given the hostility to Israel and to Israeli policy within the union, it is hardly plausible that hostility to Israel was never expressed in an antisemitic way.  An antiracist union has a responsibility to educate against antisemitism and to guard against it.  A Tribunal has the responsibility to recognise antisemitism when it occurs and to protect those who are bullied by it.  We live in a time and in a place where it is possible for a union and a Tribunal to fail to see antisemitism, even when it is shown to them in detail and even when its significance is explained to them.

David Hirsh

UCU member

119 Comments

  1. flyingrodent said,

    Much as I hate to be the bearer of bad news…

    I’m not really sure that

    - cherrypicking that judgement for OMG lines
    - reiterating charges that have already been categorically and forensically rejected and then
    - levelling those same charges at the tribunal

    is a tactically astute move.

    I mean, it’s possible that Hirsh is right and the tribunal was wrong. It seems unlikely to me, given what I know about tribunals and what I know about the author*, but it’s possible.

    Nonetheless, I suggest that him throwing his hands in the air and accusing the tribunal of, like, conspiracy or whatever, is probably not the most convincing way to respond to an absolutely crushing defeat of this nature.

    *He’s an unstoppable hysteric who has spent the last decade discovering in his defeats that he’s even more right than he first suspected he was, BTW.

    • Daniel young said,

      Only if Jerusalem is above question of rule.Unions are a grab bag of humanity is it in their rule to dictate personal beliefs.
      .

  2. Andrew said,

    Lots of …inaccuracies and misleading statements (shall we say)… here.

    The union arranged a meeting with Gert Weisskirchen who then pulled out. This is in the ruling, the tribunal saw the email exchange. Has Hirsh read the ruling?

    Sally Hunt asked for context which is surely fair enough. Why this nasty insinuation?

    The reason why Tom Hickey was deemed inappropriate by the tribunal to adjudicate Joshua Robinson’s material was because Dr Robinson did not feel confident in him and the tribunal felt that he had the right to expect that his claims were heard by someone he felt confident in. The tribunal said nothing about him not “being good at” telling the difference between criticism of Israel and anti-semitism. Has Hirsh read the ruling?

    The tribunal was a hostile environment harassment case and related to Ronnie Fraser not a tribunal on whether “the union is anti-semitic” (which by some definitions (eg. Fraser’s) could include comparing Israel to apartheid South Africa). The tribunal did not take a position on the definition of anti-semitism and certainly did not rule on whether there has ever been any incident of anti-semitism in the union EVER. The tribunal stuck closely to the material presented by the claimant and made no a priori judgements – which would be exceptionally out of order. Has Hirsh read the ruling?

    Ronnie Fraser is not just a campaigner against anti-semitism or an anti-boycott campaigner for instance his Academic Friends of Israel website’s most recent newsletter contains a video by ex-Yisrael Beiteinu MK Danny Ayalon explaining away the Palestinian refugee problem. Has Hirsh bothered to talk to Fraser or read any of his material before patronising him as an apolitical Jew?

    All in all is this article the product of incredible laziness or is it the product of incredible dishonesty?

  3. charliethechulo said,

    Flying Rodent writes in its usual disingenuous, smart-Alec tone: “I mean, it’s possible that Hirsh is right and the tribunal was wrong. It seems unlikely to me, given what I know about tribunals and what I know about the author.”

    I mean, it’s possible that Flying Rodent does know something worth knowing about something but I kinda think that’s, like, kinda unlikely, given what I know about the Rodent, man.

    I think the lesson of all this is that antisemitism within the trade union movement (and it’s not unique to UCU) has to be fought politically and not via the bourgeois courts (or in this case, ET).

    The decision does strike me as in some ways perverse (eg the Employment Judge’s ruling that identification with Israel plays no part in Jewish identity) and also in his ruling on secondary liability.

    I would, however, advise against an appeal, given the very limited grounds upon which an appeal to the EAT can be brought (that the ET’s decision was wrong in law or no reasonable tribunal could have reached such a decision).

    The crucial point is that *all* discrimination claims are in a sense, “political”. The anti-Semitism that is rife within the British “left” and trade union movement must be challenged within the existing structures of those movements, however difficult and painful that may be. The law can very occasionally be of help in fighting this kind of racism, but as this case shows, not usually.

    Unpleasant as it is to have to put up with the “left” antisemites of the UCU and other unions, it has to be done if they are to be defeated (and, in fact they almost invariably *are* defeated when debated on a level playing field).

    One final point: Andrew asks, “Has Hirsh bothered to talk to Fraser or read any of his material before patronising him as an apolitical Jew?” It is absolutely clear that *no-one” least of all Hirsh or Fraser is claiming that either this case, or Fraser himself, are “apolitical”: has Andrew bothered to read what Hirsh writes (above):

    “Of course the fight against antisemitism is also political. But this cannot be the kind of politics to which the Tribunal objected. If it was, then it would find every allegation of racism, sexism or homophobia to be impermissible, because political. Opposition to antisemitic politics has always been central to campaigns against anti-Semitism”?

  4. flyingrodent said,

    That verdict really is quite long, detailed and clinically-argued, and it really did rip strips off lots of the witnesses, trounce the complaint and basically dismiss much of it as a politically-motivated attempt to achieve by law what can’t be achieved by argument.

    And to use the formulation again – maybe the tribunal is wrong!

    If they are though, it’s going to take a stronger bit of reasoning than “Oh these courts are too bourgeois to recognise the legitimacy of the complaint”, or basically accusing the tribunal of being a bunch of racists.

    There’s no way of gilding this one – shouting “You’re in on it!” at a judicial panel just looks straight-up, barking-mad mental.

    If I was a fan of Hirsh’s mode of argument – which I’m not, obviously – I’d take this is a sign that I need to go back to the drawing board and have a serious strategic rethink.

    Hirsh takes it as a sign that his enemies are more powerful and numerous than even he had previously suspected.

    Clearly, this sells well to his fans… But not to anyone else. Which is something of a problem, given his declared aims.

  5. charliethechulo said,

    Rodent: you make no sense. Hirsh can speak for himself but my position is quite simple: the bourgeois courts (in this case, tribunal) are not the place to decide what is, or isn’t racism.

    I give no credence to their ruling in this or any other case.

    For the record, I always thought Fraser and Engage were ill-advised to pursue their case at ET, given the fact that well over 90% of all ET claims fail and the respondent only has to defend their position on ‘balance of probabilities.’

    It is, however, worth noting that the ET has *not* given a judgement upon whether or not the UCU is antisemitic, but merely upon the applicability of the legal terms ‘harassment’ and ‘secondary liability.’ The UCU so-called “left” are, of course, cock-a-hoop at this decision, but in fact it does *not* vindicate them with regard to the main charge against them: antisemitism.

  6. Andrew said,

    So Charlie, what are you saying? Ronnie Fraser’s sole political commitment is fighting anti-semitism? Does that mean that the far right Yisrael Beiteinu’s sole political commitment was fighting anti-semitism?

    And if you are going to be so r-r-revolutionary about rejecting all use of bourgeois courts in fighting racist HARASSMENT (not just racism – this was a harassment case – Hirsh neglects to tell you) then you should perhaps consider the claimant’s actions not just unadvisable but reprehensible as this was a clear attempt at using a bourgeois tribunal to subvert workers’ democracy. They were literally trying to get the tribunal to overturn democratically passed resolutions.

    • charliethechulo said,

      What bollocks, Andrew:

      !/ I have always been perfectly clear that this was a “harassment” case and I don’t need Mr Hirsh (or you, come to that) to inform me.

      2/ It does not follow from what I’ve argued that I would *always* reject the use of the bourgeois courts in cases involving trade unions. But I’ve already made it clear that in this case I think the claimant and his supporters were ill-advised to have done so.

      3/ A a matter of straight fact, Fraser was *not* trying to get the tribunal to “overturn democratically passed resolutions” but to declare that the treatment he and others received in opposing those resolutions was racist. Which in my opinion it clearly was. So the ET’s decision is of absolutely no consequence as far as my political position on this is concerned.

  7. Andrew said,

    And for the record the case was deemed without merit (not on the balance of probabilities) and many of the claims were dismissed on straight factual grounds – the Gert Weisskirchen one for example.

    You might learn something else from this tribunal – about the state of anti-semitism in the UCU.

  8. flyingrodent said,

    For the record, I always thought Fraser and Engage were ill-advised to pursue their case at ET, given the fact that well over 90% of all ET claims fail and the respondent only has to defend their position on ‘balance of probabilities.’

    I was led to believe that the claim was thrown out in its entirety not on the balance of probabilities, but because it was almost entirely composed of unprovable assertions based on highly dubious reasoning.

    But I can see why fans of unprovable assertions based on highly dubious reasoning might not be fans of the legal process.

    Nonetheless, let’s note that a major chunk of Britain’s Woe-Is-Us Israel fans threw their whole weight behind this case, and have driven their cause into a ludicrous disaster. They should have the balls to at least admit this, I think.

    After all, when Hirohito declared that the war situation had developed “not necessarily to Japan’s advantage”, he was at least conceding defeat, rather than standing on the rubble and shouting that modern warfare is inherently racist.

  9. Modernity's Ghost said,

    Jim,

    I know you will probably do this anyway, but can I suggest extra vigilance with this thread?

    You know that certain “activists” have certain hangups, axes to grind againstone particular group of people in the world and they will try to use this thread accordingly.

    I suggest keeping an extra eye on it, and its content

    • Jim Denham said,

      My extra eye never closes, Mod.

  10. charliethechulo said,

    Rodent: your ignorance is only exceeded by your facetiousness: ETs operate on the basis of ‘balance of probabilities’: FACT

    90+% of claims fail; FACT

    A claim can *only* succeeed or fail at ET on balance of probabilities.

    “But I can see why fans of unprovable assertions based on highly dubious reasoning might not be fans of the legal process”: if by that you mean that socialists (btw, do you consider yourself one, it’s never been clear) have no illusions in bourgeois justice.

    It’s got nothing whatsoever to do with crying “woe is me” or having “balls” . To bring in a WW2 analogy in this context, btw, strikes me as just a little unfortunate. But then that wouldn’t have occured to you, would it?

    Btw: do you accept that this judgement is *not* about whether the UCU is antisemitic? As Andrew (#2 above) puts it, “The tribunal did not take a position on the definition of anti-semitism and certainly did not rule on whether there has ever been any incident of anti-semitism in the union EVER. “

    • levi9909 said,

      The tribunal said that it would not attempt to define antisemitism but they were clear on the issue of anti-Jewish racism.

      It seems to us that a belief in the Zionist project or an attachment to Israel or any similar sentiment cannot amount to a protected characteristic. It is not intrinsically a part of Jewishness and, even if it was, it could not be substituted for the pleaded characteristics, which are race and religion or belief.

      So the tribunal did take a position on whether there had been incidents of anti-Jewish racism at the UCU and found that in ten examples alleged by the Complainant, all were “without merit”. My own view is that anti-Jewish racism is synonymous with antisemitism but I gather there are zionists trying to redefine both Jews and antisemitism. the former as supporters of colonial settlement and ethnic cleansing and the latter as critics, opponents and victims of those things.

  11. Boleyn Ali said,

    Die Fledermaus in his own words:

    “razor sharp political insights from the confines of his narrow, onanistic bed”.

  12. Monsuer Jelly More Bounce to the Ounce (Much More Bounce) OOps upside your Head this time with feeling said,

    “btw, do you consider yourself one, it’s never been clear”

    he has made it clear on several other fora/forums that he is not a socialist or even left-wing as far as you can tell because of his shambling little excersises in obfuscataion and shit. and indeed he deffo hates socialists. he especially claims to hate commies/marxists/trots/leninists etc who are all a singular mulch as far as he is concerned. His theoretical journal is the daily mash and his ‘paper’ is the guardian who advised, nee demanded, that everyone vote wibberwull democunt in the last gen lection. nuff sedd.

  13. flyingrodent said,

    ETs operate on the basis of ‘balance of probabilities’: FACT

    This is true – so do the civil courts, for that matter, so that’s hardly a reason to dismiss ETs as inherently awful. Although losers in civil cases do have a tendency to pull precisely this “We Wuz Robbed, It’s Not Fair” act as well, generally to great public indifference.

    Nonetheless, my understanding of the judgement was that it found against the complainer on the grounds that his complaints were not based on facts. That’s why they use words like “false” and “untrue” rather than “probably not true, in all likelihood, all things considered”.

    All told, this looks very much like what happens when a bunch of like-minded individuals start to believe their own propaganda. This geezer here plainly has a far firmer grasp on reality than Mr Hirsh…

    http://www.thejc.com/news/uk-news/104575/anti-israel-union-case-was-act-epic-folly%E2%80%99

    …Insofar as he actually recognises the tribunal’s judgement as sound, rather than opting for the clownish tactic of basically accusing the tribunal of complicity.

    And it strikes me that your “this judgement is not about whether the UCU is antisemitic” point could’ve been made long before any evidence was even heard, and represents a fairly feeble attempt to claw back a bit of credibility.

    It really would be better to chalk this one up to experience and move on, I would’ve thought. But then, I’m not that sympathetic to Mr Hirsh, who I regard as basically a crank, so I’m content to see him donning clown shoes and trying to stomp on phantom judicial racists.

  14. charliethechulo said,

    Rodent: I do *not* dismiss ET’s as “inherently awful” , but I *do* say they are inherently biased against the claimant (in *all* cases) and are not the forum in which to decide what is, and what isn’t racism.

    As for who is and isn’t a “crank” who likes “droning on”…well I’ll leave that to people who’ve followed your obsessive but also superficial and politically dishonest contributions here and elsewhere over many years, to judge.

  15. charliethechulo said,

    BDS: the mask slips in Ireland:

    Engage (@engageonline) tweeted at 2:57 PM on Fri, Apr 05, 2013:
    Irish academic trade union votes to exclude Israelis from capuses in Ireland: The Teachers Union of Ireland ha… http://t.co/AluoxOonat
    (https://twitter.com/engageonline/status/320173448922009601)

  16. flyingrodent said,

    As for who is and isn’t a “crank” who likes “droning on”…well I’ll leave that to people who’ve followed your obsessive but also superficial and politically dishonest contributions here and elsewhere over many years, to judge.

    Fair enough, but I do have to point out that whatever my many faults, I haven’t

    - brought any lawsuits that have been judicially proven to be utterly baseless and without merit
    - hauled any MPs or noted authors into court to argue my case for this or that, only to have them summarily dismissed by judges as utter bullshitters or
    - been totally dismantled by a tribunal then tried to pretend that my politics are still 100% correct in the face of crushing defeat.

    In terms of droning on and crankdom, I’d say that this puts me several steps towards sanity beyond Mr Hirsh, whose post you’ve chosen to host.

  17. charliethechulo said,

    Rodent: you are a dishonest crank who never makes your own views explicit, but whose views are, I suspect, very unpleasant indeed.

    Still, re-reading the kicking that Clive and others gave you here over “blowback” still makes enjoyable reading.

    As for the Tribunal: how many more times? Socialist do not give credence to the bourgeois courts and the ruling in this case counts for nothing politically. If you (or anyone else) wants to argue against Fraser and/or Hirsh, do so on the politics, not the ruling of a bosses’ Tribunal where 90% plus of all claimants lose.

  18. flyingrodent said,

    Socialist do not give credence to the bourgeois courts and the ruling in this case counts for nothing politically.

    This really is the equivalent of saying “I had my fingers crossed, nah nah nah nah nah” and it cuts no ice with those who aren’t already fans of your particular position.

    I have no doubt your politics are immaculate, in your mind.

  19. s4r4hbrown said,

    I find it frustrating how much misrepresentation or flattening there is of this case in the media – and I’m not saying this is intentional or malicious – I think it’s just because it’s complicated. As FR says he thinks David Hirsh is a crank, I’ll note that I don’t agree – and that, as I said in my own post on HP, my views of the central issues at state remain unchanged.

    There was a lot of evidence in play at the tribunal and there were always things I felt less sure about, mostly because I didn’t have enough first hand information of some elements. But as far as the things that I felt strongly about go, the things I felt most informed about – I haven’t had my views changed a bit by the ruling.

    I have always had slight differences of opinion with David Hirsh and I don’t feel absolutely sure I agree with *everything* he has said here (though, again, sometimes that’s more to do with feeling unconfident about a particular fact than with active disagreement). I agree with the thrust of his post, certainly. From an outsider’s perspective we were simply destroyed, I suppose. But if I really felt that we had been proved wrong (as opposed to tactically mistaken in bringing this particular case which may well be the case but as I’m not a lawyer I can’t feel any guilt over that particular possible error) even though I might not recant publicly, I wouldn’t be recording my views on various blogs, I’d just keep quiet.

  20. Yossi Benayoun said,

    Nasty crank, who insists that people are talking about Jews when they mention Israel or Zionists.

    What would you do if you only had a year to live?
    April 5, 2013 — David Hirsh
    What would you do? You’d do the important things, right? Iain Banks decided to have the stupid things he’d written about Jews re-published in the Guardian.

    “A sporting boycott of Israel would make relatively little difference to the self-esteem of Israelis in comparison to South Africa; an intellectual and cultural one might help make all the difference…”
    http://engageonline.wordpress.com/2013/04/05/what-would-you-do-if-you-only-had-a-year-to-live/

  21. Andrew said,

    @Sarah, what media misrepresentation and flattening? As far as I am aware the media has largely not covered the ruling. The Jewish Chronicle and the Times Higher Education Supplement have both written up accurate and honest summaries – that’s about it.

    David Hirsh is repeating things which have been proved wrong not just politically or morally but factually. He is factually wrong in still insisting that the UCU rebuffed Gert Weisskirchen. There is no room for doubt on that one unless you think the tribunal is lying.

  22. Andrew said,

    “After all, when Hirohito declared that the war situation had developed “not necessarily to Japan’s advantage”, he was at least conceding defeat, rather than standing on the rubble and shouting that modern warfare is inherently racist.”

    You *are* rather good, mr. bat.

  23. Andrew said,

    “Socialist do not give credence to the bourgeois courts…”

    Of course they do. They might have criticisms of said courts and the laws they enforce, but I’ve never seen a single socialist dismiss a court case in it’s entirety without even bothering to look at the case themselves. Until now that is.

    • Monsuer Jelly More Bounce to the Ounce (Much More Bounce) OOps upside your Head this time with feeling said,

      has a valid point.

    • charliethechulo said,

      Andrew: socialists do *not* (or, should not) let the bourgeois courts determine their political stance on issues like racism. Clear enough for you? Or do you disagree?

      And who, exactly, hasn’t bothered “to look at the case themselves” before commenting?

      • Andrew said,

        I agree with *that*. What I don’t agree with is this idea that socialists should ignore all the findings of court cases as a matter of course. The factual matters in particular are useful for clearing up some issues. If you are really going to say that the tribunal is not reliable in reporting the email exchange between the UCU and Gert Weisskirchen then you are not acting as some sort of leftist radical but as a conspiracy theory nut – “you can’t believe what the man tells you, the bourgeois courts are shills for union democracy…”

  24. flyingrodent said,

    I find it frustrating how much misrepresentation or flattening there is of this case in the media

    A quick Google finds that it’s only the Times Education pullout and the Telegraph that have reported on this, and both play the judgement pretty straight, so I’m not sure what you’re referring to here.

    What would you do if you only had a year to live?
    April 5, 2013 — David Hirsh
    What would you do? You’d do the important things, right? Iain Banks decided to have the stupid things he’d written about Jews re-published in the Guardian.

    An odd point. If your response to the question “What would you do if you found out Iain Banks had only a year to live?” is Bleat about his incorrect attitude towards your pet projects, then I’d say you deserve a smart smack upside the head for being a dick.

    • levi9909 said,

      Flying Rodent, do you have a link for the Telegraph piece on this?

      • flyingrodent said,

        Hmm, actually, no. I thought I’d seen an article on the Telegraph site but now that I look, they’ve only reported the complaint, not the result. I must’ve seen it somewhere else.

        And on that David Hirsh bleating at Iain Banks thing, where he says “Iain Banks decided to have the stupid things he’d written about Jews re-published in the Guardian”…

        Iain Banks is on holiday with his Mrs, no doubt trying to relax and enjoy himself after being told he’s terminally ill. I suppose he might have taken time off his holiday to get on the phone to the Guardian to say Hey guys, gonnae publish they Israel articles I wrote, it’ll give me a thrill before I kick the bucket.

        On the other hand, the Graun may just have republished them because Banks’ illness has made him topical.

        Which would mean Hirsh is bashing a dying man for something he didn’t do, and adds either “dishonesty” or “stupidity” to his list of character flaws.

  25. Richard Armbach said,

    The real spine chiller about this case.
    http://hoffmanchronicled.wordpress.com/1675-2/

  26. Monsuer Jelly More Bounce to the Ounce (Much More Bounce) OOps upside your Head this time with feeling said,

    BTW. I could not give a fuck about the subject matter of this post. I just hate certain cuernts involved in the matter.

  27. levi9909 said,

    Thanks FR. I suppose it would be trite to ask Sarah which media she finds so frustrating.

    I find it more frustrating that the mainstream media is avoiding the case altogether. Closest to mainstream coverage I’ve seen is the Jewish Chronicle which was pretty much factual:
    http://www.thejc.com/news/uk-news/104575/anti-israel-union-case-was-act-epic-folly%E2%80%99

    Richard – I like your post. The insane demands of Anthony Julius in this case have received less coverage than the blow by blow rejection of each bogus assertion made in support of the case.

  28. Jim Denham said,

    Predictably, the “left” antisemites are cock-a-hoop over this. Serious socialists and internationalists will continue to argue for Palestinian rights, for solidarity between Israeli and Palestinian workers, for two states and against the divisive, objectively antisemitic BDS campaign.

    The racist logic of BDS laid bare:
    http://t.co/AluoxOonat
    (https://twitter.com/engageonline/status/320173448922009601)
    “cease all cultural and academic collaboration with Israel, including the exchange of scientists, students and academic personalities, as well as all cooperation in research programmes”.

  29. Richard Armbach said,

    Jim you don’t have to be a BDS fan to be be concerned about the way mendacious and false accusations of ant-Semitism are used to intimidate and smear critics of Israel. This isn’t a game but it is reduced to the level of a parochial sand pit squabble by these tactics. I take no pleasure in Ronnie Fraser’s discomfort but I welcome the outcome. Hopefully it will encourage other people and organisations to stand up to the blackmail.

    see here
    http://harriettsplace.blogspot.co.uk/

  30. Jim Denham said,

    Richard: I fail to see what that article you’ve linked to has to do with this discussion.

    And, as a matter of fact, I think it’s a bit of an urban/leftie myth that “false accusations of anti-Semitism are used to intimidate and smear critics of Israel.” After all, both David Hirsh and myself are pretty sharp critics of Israel (as the UCU’s brief pointed out regarding Hirsh, at the ET).

    I’m not saying that false accusations of anti-Semitism are never made, but the idea (put about by the likes of Pilger and other loons) that all critics of Israel are routinely smeared in this way, is patently nonsense. In fact, I’d be interested to see any recent examples.

  31. Yossi Benayoun said,

    I’d be interested to see any recent examples.

    “Iain Banks decided to have the stupid things he’d written about Jews re-published in the Guardian.”

  32. Jim Denham said,

    And where is Banks called an anti-Semite (as opposed to just being “stupid”)?

    I think Yossi’s just provided us with a classic example of the urban myth I mentioned.

  33. flyingrodent said,

    I’d be interested to see any recent examples.

    I suppose you could start by explaining what you meant when you said you suspected my “views are…. very unpleasant indeed” based on, apparently, pretty much bugger all.

  34. Jim Denham said,

    Rodent: I do, indeed, think your views are very unpleasant, based on what I’ve read from you. Mind you, I’ve never had a response to my repeated requests for you to clarify what exactly your political opinions are, so you can’t really complain about me drawing my own conclusions, can you?

    Now, about the charge that anyone who criticises Israel is automatically smeared as an anti-Semite: any recent examples?

  35. flyingrodent said,

    about the charge that anyone who criticises Israel is automatically smeared as an anti-Semite: any recent examples?

    Well, there was a recent, high-profile court case in which an entire union was accused of racist harrassment, and the charge was proven in law to be trumped up, politically-motivated horseshit. The judgement makes for interesting reading.

    Maybe you heard about it? It’s been hot news on blogs.

  36. Jim Denham said,

    “Maybe you heard about it? It’s been hot news on blogs.”

    Yup, smart-ass, I sure have.

    But even a jerk like you can surely see that the case wasn’t about criticism of the state of Israel, but about how people who didn’t agree with some of the more extreme manifestations of that criticism (eg the Boycott campaign) were treated.

    The UCU’s own brief cited Hirsh’s criticisms of Israel as part of their case.

    Now: an example of the “anti-Semitism” card being used to refute legitimate criticism of Israel, please?

    • levi9909 said,

      Does the example have to include the actual word “antisemitism” or could it be lines like “clichéd, dangerous and stereotyped nonsense” [about Jews]?

      It’s just you’ve rejected as inapplicable, Hirsh’s rounding on Iain Banks for something he wrote three years ago and that’s a line from the post.

      I remember you saying that when Jonathan Freedland referred to “anti-Jewish bias” that didn’t amount to an allegation of antisemitism either.

      It’s bizarre because I never booked you as a stickler for accuracy before.

      But, before you get too deep into nitpicking every exact word of what people say, can we just note that the massed ranks of the zionist movement have just attempted to use the law to denounce as antisemitic a campaign against the racist war criminals of the state of Israel and they have failed on each of ten counts? Can we also note that contrary to the pack of lies told by Sarah, it was nothing to do with technicalities and contrary to a contradictory pack of lies by Hirsh, it wasn’t because the judges suspected a Jewish conspiracy.

      It was because the case was a flagrant attempt to have the “Zionist project” counted as an “intrinsic characteristic of Jewishness” and thereby have all criticism of Israel ruled impermissible

  37. Richard Armbach said,

    Jim the ” automatic smearing ” of critics of Israel as anti-Semitic is a strategy of a certain hard core collective, of which I would suggest David is a member and certainly the lunatic fringe of the ZF is. So the debate is transfixed by mutual accusations of bad faith. I would love to see a discussion of Israel in which the expression ” anti semitism” was banned and/or a discussion of anti-Semitism in which no reference to Israel was allowed.

    • Jim Denham said,

      “Jim the ” automatic smearing ” of critics of Israel as anti-Semitic is a strategy of a certain hard core collective, of which I would suggest David is a member and certainly the lunatic fringe of the ZF”

      Let’s have an example, Richard. As I wrote before, I’m not saying it *never* happens, but we’re told it happens all the time…so let’s have an example, please.

  38. Richard Armbach said,

    will do

  39. Jim Denham said,

    We’re waiting, Richard…

    • levi9909 said,

      I know I’m not Richard but what about the Scarfe and Bell cartoons?

      http://tinyurl.com/d833tcj

      But really it would be a pity to end the thread on something that wasn’t directly related to the abject humiliation of a cause that David Hirsh has made a career out of for the last at least 8 years.

      • Jim Denham said,

        Even an ignoramus like you, Mr Elf, must surely have understood that the objections to those cartoon was on grounds of classic anti-Semitic “tropes” and *not* because of the cartoons’ criticism of Israel.

        But of course, you *didn’t* and *don’t* understand that. Or choose not to, assuming that you’re not a complete idiot (which I don’t think you are).

    • Gert said,

      It’s really funny how Jimbo is now demanding evidence for the abuse of the term antisemitism suffered by critics of Zionism, when a few comments up the cretin Modders is implicitly calling for the banning/redacting of those pesky ‘enemies of the Jewish People’, i.e. critics of Zionism. As Moddy never ceases to explain: ‘in anti-Zionism, Zionism is code for Jews’.

      Asking for that kind of evidence is like asking for evidence that the sky is blue.

      As regards Jimbo’s own criticism of Israel, I’d like to see it. Maybe, just maybe he’s berated a couple of settlers for not washing their Israeli flags often enough but that’s about as far as he goes. Alternatively, in Jimbo’s mind only members of the tribe are allowed to criticise other members but only a bit.

  40. levi9909 said,

    A chunk of the report:

    ‘152 It is implicit in the word ‘unwanted’ that a claimant complaining of harassment must have a sustainable ground for feeling aggrieved about the conduct on which the claim is rested. He has none.
    153 … Was the conduct ‘related to’ the Claimant’s protected characteristics of race or religion or belief? Plainly, the Respondents’ conduct was not. Their constitutional behaviour was not connected in any way whatsoever with his Jewishness.
    154 Did the Respondents’ conduct have the effect of violating the Claimant’s dignity or creating the necessary adverse environment for him? Self-evidently, it did not.’

  41. Jim Denham said,

    As I previously wrote: “Predictably, the “left” antisemites are cock-a-hoop over this”.

    And that, Mr Elf, has *nothing* to do with any criticism of Israel.

  42. Yossi Benayoun said,

    In fact, I’d be interested to see any recent examples

    “Predictably, the “left” antisemites are cock-a-hoop over this”.
    Jim Denham said,
    April 7, 2013 at 5:52 am

  43. Jim Denham said,

    I said “to smear critics of Israel” Yossi. My claim that Mr Elf is an anti-Semite has nothing to do with any criticism of Israel he’s made. It’s to do with his denial of the state of Israel’s right to even exist (in *any* shape or form – eg behind 1967 borders) and his obsessive, fanatical, hatred of anyone who disagrees.

    P.S: It should go without saying, of course, that Mr Elf’s personal ethnicity is of no relevance to this discussion.

    • levi9909 said,

      Ok, Jim, antisemitism is now opposition to colonial settlement, ethnic cleansing and racist laws. But what about the Scarfe and Bell cartoons? They were only criticism of Netanyahu. both were accused of antisemitism. And Iain Banks has has been accused, by Hirsh, of antisemitism.

      You’ve moved the thread from a complete wipe-out of bogus allegations of antisemitism against supporters of BDS to examples of where mere criticism of Israel is denounced as antisemitic. You’ve been given examples. That ought to be that.

      Of course there is one other fun item I’ve already alluded to and that’s the flat contradiction of each other’s bogus accounts of the affair by Sarah AB and Dr Hirsh being passed off as “slight differences” by Sarah.

      • Jim Denham said,

        No, Mr Elf: anti-Semitism is the denial of the right of self-determination to the Jewish people. Geddit?

    • Gert said,

      Why one would want to supply evidence for the abuse of the term ‘antisemitism’ in order to label critics of Zionism, in order to try and silence them (that trick doesn’t work so well anymore) or in order to railroad any debate into ‘I think you’re a Jew hater’, is beyond me, when that evidence is all around you and could easily be found in the sewers of Jimbo’s own Britzio manifesto.

      Is there in fact one (one single, please!) critic of Zionism who HASN’T been tarred with the AS brush?

      But it goes further: even blind supporters of Israel don’t escape the suspicion. I mean, Obama, does he really, really, really luuurrve Israel really quite as much as he tells AIPAC? Or is he really a Muslim faker, ready to (to use Mad Mel Phlips’ words) ‘throw Israel under the bus’? You tell me, Jimbo.

      You don’t quite realise how funny you and your Zionist clique really look to us, Jim.

      • Jim Denham said,

        You are a jerk, eh, Gert…

        “Is there in fact one (one single, please!) critic of Zionism who HASN’T been tarred with the AS brush?”:

        Yeah: me for a start (unless you include Elf’s allegation that I am, in fact an anti-Semite)

  44. Larry said,

    The Tribunal replied that the Jews who say they feel antisemitism are actually lying for Israel

    Not to nitpick or anything, but that’s an astonishingly serious allegation. It’s also manifestly false.

    The Tribunal did not say that Ronnie lied, or anything of the kind. In fact, what it said was “The Claimant impressed us as a sincere witness…. There was nothing synthetic about his displays of emotion.”

    It was accepted by all sides that Ronnie was upset and hurt on various occasions. The decision the Tribunal had to make – which David Hirsh completely ignores in his preliminary explosion – is whether or not those events amounted to harassment of Ronnie (as an individual) by the UCU (as an organization).

    It found that they did not, and laid out its reasoning extremely clearly. If David wants to argue that the judges erred in coming to that conclusion, he should explain exactly how and where, rather than wittering on about the “Livingstone formulation”.

  45. levi9909 said,

    The idea that Jews have a right to self-determination is the same as the idea that Jews are entitled to implement a project of colonial settlement and ethnic cleansing. Jews do not have the right to specifically Jewish statehood. All we can demand is equality and liberty. not privilege.

    • Pinkie said,

      That makes you an anti-Semite, it seems. Oh well, there’s no point in discussing this with Jim.

      (I do wonder why he or the AWL are prepared to work with apparent racists in other areas, but that’s their problem.)

      • Andrew said,

        What puzzles me is that they must regard their former organisation (before they “re-thought” Israel/Palestine) as anti-semitic.

    • Mark Elf Is Scum said,

      “Jews do not have the right to specifically Jewish statehood”…so Palestinians don’t have a right to specifically Arab, or specifically Muslim statehood, by that reckoning? Well considering that Abbas has clearly stated that no Jews will be welcome in a Palestinian state, and I don’t need to remind you of the sort of state that Hamas are demanding (though you will obviously whitewash the fact that their charter calls for genocide of Jews and that no Jew will be able to set foot in any Hamas-run state without being murdered…same applies to Christians, atheists, homosexuals etc, not that you give a rat’s arse about them), don’t you think that rather knackers any support you might have for this imaginary state called Palestine which you favour?

      “All we can demand is equality and liberty.”…two things Kews never enjoyed in the Middle East and never will do. What is your solution – slaughter them all? Or move them all to Golders Green?

      • levi9909 said,

        Abbas has clearly stated that no Jews will be welcome in a Palestinian state, and I don’t need to remind you of the sort of state that Hamas are demanding

        So/ PA state, horrid. Hamas state, horrid and Jewish state horrid. I know. Get rid of these horrid entities and replace them with one state for all. You’ve just made the case for the one state solution.

        Thanks

  46. levi9909 said,

    Re the cartoons, they were not antisemitic tropes. We hear that whenever Israel kills children or whenever the west is denounced for supporting Israel’s crimes and excuses.

    Anyway I think you’ve derailed the thread enough for one post, Jim.

    Just to get back on topic, here’s a rare honest zionist take on the disaster that befell Hirsh and co at the tribunal:
    http://cartoonkippah.com/legal-ruling-anti-zionism-racism/
    Read it and understand where these false allegations of antisemitism have got your friends. Poor Hirsh is gonna have to consider a whole new careeer. Bogus allegations of antisemitism might be going out of fashion, but then he and you always did chuck them around like they were going out of fashion so maybe your brand of utter cobblers was appropriate after all.

  47. Richard Armbach said,

    Examples Jim ? Well the Scarfe cartoon ” scandal ” is the daddy of them all. Then there is Stephen Sizer. Then there is Charlotte Jago and Ron Cohen, shamelessly smeared over the Coleman issue ( Broken Barnet is the best source for that one.) I could go on and on but you would say mere drops of water in the vast ocean of life, and I agree that a battle of the anecdotes gets us nowhere.

    The reality is that the tactic is all pervasive, and not just on nut job blog spots like Harry’s Place or CifWatch. Follow the material that comes out of the mainstream organisations, The Board, CST. Read the JC regularly. It is all there for those with ears to hear and eyes to see. The link provided by Levi in comment 46 above will take you to a realistic assessment of the situation. The outcoje of this case is that the anti Zionist is anti Semitism trope is dead in the water. At least I hope so and I say this as someone who has come to the the position of feeling that the State of Israel business needs a drastic re think very recently and with a heavy heart.

  48. Jim Denham said,

    “[T]he tactic is all pervasive, and not just on nut job blog spots “…ah, the tentacles, the Zionist tentacles

    Stephen Sizer, whose website has linked to David Duke’s writings on Jews, is *not* an anti-Semite???

    Next you’ll be telling me that Gilad Atzmon is not anti-Semitic, Richard!

    PS: *no-one* (No-one I know, anyway) argues that anti-Zionism is synonymous with anti-Semitism. But, equally well, merely calling yourself an “anti Zionist” doesn’t mean, ipso facto, that you cannot be an anti-Semite (as the history of Stalinism and, indeed, the WRP, shows).

    • levi9909 said,

      Stephen Sizer is not antisemitic. Inadvertently linking to a racist site doesn’t make someone a racist. I link to you deliberately sometimes and I’ve quoted Geoffrey Alderman with approval. It doesn’t make me a racist.

      The whole case of Fraser v UCU was predicated on Anti-Zionism = Antisemitism. That’s why it got blown away. Try reading the report instead of whingeing about it.

  49. Timon for Tea said,

    Fascinating to see FlyingRodent’s new-found faith in the infallibility of tribunal judgments. He used to be so much more sceptical (the word ‘whitewash’ getting bandied about quite a lot in the past I seem to recall). I wonder what could have converted him. It’s a mystery.

    Is it true, by the way, that if you look in a mirror and say ‘Jew’ three times, FlyingRodent will appear, or is that just a scary story the kids round here like to spook themselves with?

  50. Jim Denham said,

    Funny how Mr Elf is always on hand to excuse anti-Semites (even those who link to the KKK) yet he claims to be, himself, just an “anti-Zionist.” It makes you wonder whatever possessed him and his sidekick Greenstein to decide that Gilad Atzmon actually *is* an anti-Semite: possibly the only one is existence if Elf and Greenstein are to be believed.

    Btw: I’m not sure who Mr Elf’s “imbecile” comment is aimed at, but assuming it’s me, I’d simply reply:

    1/ I have read the written ET decision.

    2/ I don’t agree with it

    3/ I wasn’t aware that socialists were obliged to agree with ET decisions.

    4/ I think I’ve already made my position on this perfectly clear and do not require advice from a professional apologist for anti-Semitism.

  51. Timon for Tea said,

    “The whole case of Fraser v UCU was predicated on Anti-Zionism = Antisemitism. ”

    No it wasn’t. In fact it was very explicit that this was not at issue at all. Hard to see how you could make that mistake, but it is a common one, even though the numbers of actual examples of this apparently widespread tactic that get produced when asked so far adds up to around about ‘none’.

    • levi9909 said,

      TfT, you’ve managed to show, more so even than Jim, that zionists never argue in good faith.

      Even Hirsh started his post here by reference to the fact that Fraser and all of his witnesses were alleging antisemitism against the UCU but that the Tribunal turned out to as antisemitic as the UCU itself.

      The Tribunal refused to define antisemitism but rather treated Fraser’s complaint as if it were a case of racism against him as a Jew.

      See this from the report:
      3 The Claimant has for many years harboured a sense of dissatisfaction with the Respondents’ handling of the Israel/Palestine debate within the union and with certain associated motions passed or decisions taken (or not taken). That sentiment now finds expression in this enormous piece of litigation in which he charges the Respondents with ‘institutional anti-Semitism’ which, he says, constitutes harassment of him as a Jew.

      For him to establish the racist element in his allegation he would have to establish that the union had offended against his “protected characteristics” as a Jew.

      Now see this from the report:

      150 It seems to us that a belief in the Zionist project or an attachment to Israel or any similar sentiment cannot amount to a protected characteristic. It is not intrinsically a part of Jewishness and, even if it was, it could not be substituted for the pleaded characteristics, which are race and religion or belief. Accordingly, if and in so far as the Claimant seeks to base his claim on what might be termed a sub-characteristic (we are bound to say that we remain uncertain as to Mr Julius’s position on this point), we find that it is not open to him to do so. A separate matter, which we will address in relation to the individual claims, is whether the treatment complained of, or any of it, was ‘related to’ his Jewish race or his Jewish religion or belief.

      And this is from Ronnie Fraser’s statement on his Academic Friends of Israel (aka Mr and Mrs Fraser) website:
      http://www.academics-for-israel.org/
      Having read the judgment there are two points which greatly concern me. The first is “a belief in the Zionist project or an attachment to Israel cannot amount to a protected characteristic. It is not intrinsically a part of Jewishness…” (para 150). For the court to say that as Jews we do not have an attachment to Israel is disappointing considering we have been yearning for Israel for 2000 years and it has been in our prayers all that time. The second point highlighted the need for Anglo-Jewry to urgently adopt and publicise its own definition of antisemitsm.

      As a member of the Board of Deputies I intend to campaign for us as a community to accept a definition of Jewishness which includes a connection with Israel and the adoption of a definition of anti-Semitism.

      QED

  52. Jim Denham said,

    “Left” anti-Semites like Mr Elf, naturally use this decision to boost their own prejudices. The Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign is particularly prone to this:I think it might be worth bearing in mind the ‘anti-Zionist’ interpretation of the judgement.

    See, for example, the SPSC response at:

    http://www.scottishpsc.org.uk/index.php/campaigning/anti-semitism/legal-attacks/1538-zionists-legal-attack-repulsed-and-attackers-routed

    Some choice extracts:

    “The Zionist ‘All Palestine Activists are Antisemitic’ Brigade have suffered a precedent-setting defeat that will reverberate to our advantage for a long time to come.”

    (No, Fraser did not claim that anyone who supports Palestinian rights is anti-semitic.)

    “The vexatious litigants (claimed) that the union is ‘institutionally antisemitic’ for taking a stand in favour of Palestinian rights.”

    (No, that was not the basis of Fraser’s claim.)

    “Part of the proceedings were absurd, but some elements were sinister. Fraser revealed during cross-examination that the so-called Fair Play Campaign Group … had given £50,000 to Engage to smear all left-wing and trade union support for Palestine as ‘the new anti-Semitism’.”

    (There’s always something sinister going on when there’s a Zionist around!!! That the Fair Play Campaign Group funds Engage is now established fact. But not for the purpose stated by the SPSC.)

    “Jews ought to be concerned for several reasons that defenders of Israeli barbarism are working, albeit so far unsuccessfully, to implicate all Jews in Israel’s crimes. Firstly, it’s important not to support apartheid and ethnic cleansing. Secondly, the nightmare of Zionism will one day end in Israel/Palestine and all who helped to end it will be overjoyed while those who worked to sustain it will be shamed.”

    (That’s typical of these Zionists!!! First they collaborate with the Nazis in the Holocaust. And now they work to implicate all Jews in Israel’s crimes. Note also that there is a particular onus on Jews – unlike the rest of the world’s population – to distance themselves from Israel.)

    “The UCU victory will embolden BDS campaigners and sap the morale of those defending the indefensible.”

    The judgement will indeed ‘embolden’ the likes of the SPSC. Even more than in the past they’ll believe in their own spotless self-righteousness and dismiss all allegations of anti-semitism as part of a failed Zionist conspiracy.

    You could argue that none of this necessarily justifies Ronnie Fraser’s decision to bring his case. Fair enough. But at the same time no-one should have any illusions about the practical real-world consequences of the hearing’s outcome.

    Next time another member of the SPSC racially abuses a Jew (in the tradition of Paul Donnachie) this is the judgement which will be wheeled out in an attempt to defend their actions.

    • levi9909 said,

      Jim, you clearly still haven’t read the report or your own cross-post from Hirsh but while you’re coming over all forensic, Hirsh actually denied that Engage received £50 k from the Board of Deputies’ Fair Play fund and in this tweet exchange the CEO of the BoD supported Hirsh’s claim:

      Jews Sans Frontieres ‏@jewssf
      @richardarmbach All I know is Fraser said BoardofDeputies gave £50k to @engageonline. Chief Engagenik Hirsh denied it http://jfjfp.com/?p=41306

      Jon Benjamin ‏@JonBenja
      @jewssf @richardarmbach @engageonline Denied, because it didn’t happen!

      Not sure if that means it was a different amount or that there was no funding.from the BoD Fair Play Campaign Group at all.

      In fact, thanks to you reminding me, Jim, I’ve now tweeted a query to the Chief Exec for clarification.

      In the meantime, could you point to the evidence “That the Fair Play Campaign Group funds Engage is now established fact”? Thanks if you can. Don’t worry too much if you can’t.

  53. Jim Denham said,

    Mr Elf: when will you get it into your head that I do not speak for Hirsh, Fraser or Engage. I am under no obligation to agree with them on everything (or indeed, anything). But that doesn’t stop me

    1/ disagreeing with the ET’s decision

    2/ Recognising you and people like you for what you are: at best apologists for antisemitsm and, at worst (eg in your case) antiisemites themselves, albeit of the “left” variety.

    • levi9909 said,

      Jim, I’ve just acknowledged that you disagree with Hirsh. I even quoted you, look:

      That the Fair Play Campaign Group funds Engage is now established fact

      You said it, I quoted it, and I pointed out that as you say, you “do not speak for Hirsh” and in this instance you clearly disagree with him. You say that Fair Play Campaign Group funding for Engage is an established fact. Well, Hirsh says that Engage didn’t receive funding from them. I asked for evidence, maybe a link, whatever.

      But you changed the subject. I can’t remember how many times you’ve done that in this thread but anyway…

      You’ve given no indication that you actually know what the case was about nor what the decision was. So you can’t honestly say you disagree with the decision but then you (and your friends) haven’t *honestly* said anything on this thread. In fact when you look at the line-up in this post and thread it’s much like the Tribunal. A bunch of chancers and liars for racist war criminals, denounced even by a fellow zionist as “exaggerators, manipulators and arrogant liars.” That was in this article, http://cartoonkippah.com/legal-ruling-anti-zionism-racism/
      I already linked it but, like the Tribunal report, you can’t have read.it.

      From the Tribunal report Adam Wagner concluded:
      the ‘anti-Zionism equals racism’ argument is plainly bankrupt and has no purchase in wider society. We should move on to something which might actually work. And that is the lesson of this sorry Passover saga.

      This chuck of the report sums up the case. Note it quotes from Julius’s own letter:

      Complaint (10): The letter before action of 1 July 2011 and UCU’s response

      136 By the letter before action, Mr Julius charged the Respondents with harassing the Claimant. It was said that the union was not a place that was hospitable to Jews and that the union’s treatment of the Claimant was not merely a violation of equality legislation but also a scandal. Reference was made to correspondence going back to 2008, the boycott motions, the management of the Activists List, the Bongani Masuku affair and other matters. It was said that the union was institutionally anti-Semitic and that the decision most recently taken to abandon the Working Definition was just the most recent of many “insults”. That motion was characterised as a choice to legislate anti-Semitism out of existence. The letter continued in similar unbridled fashion and culminated in the demand for the abrogation of Motion 70 of 2011, an open an unqualified acknowledgment that the union had been guilty of institutional anti-Semitism coupled with a public apology, a commitment to abide by a code of conduct in respect of its Jewish members to be drawn up by a body comprising individuals approved by the Claimant and a further commitment to sponsor a programme (for a minimum of 10 years and conducted by that same body) educating academics about the dangers of anti-Semitism, “with special reference to the relationship between anti-Semitism and what now passes for ‘anti-Zionism”.

      The equating of anti-Zionism with antisemitism is precisely what this case was all about and it was resoundingly rejected blow by blow and in painful detail.

      And the losers in this case have done worse than go into denial. They seem to want to open up a whole new front by suggesting the Tribunal itself was a bunch of racist liars. No. If that ragbag of great and good zionist novelists, lawyers and academics want to find a bunch of racist liars, they can stand back and look at themselves.

  54. Jim Denham said,

    I’ve no idea what the above is supposed to show, prove or be about.

    Best stick to what you do best, Mr Elf: appeasing anti-Semites.

    • levi9909 said,

      Ok, I’ll keep it short and simple. You said:
      “That the Fair Play Campaign Group funds Engage is now established fact”

      I’m asking for evidence, a link, a word on where you got your information from, that sort of thing.

  55. Jim Denham said,

    I’ll keep it short and simple Mr Elf: it’s now an established fact.

  56. Modernity's Ghost said,

    Jim,

    Word to the wise: you will sooner get a brick to make you a cuppa than be able to talk any sense into (or hear any from) Elf.

    You are wasting your breath, blood pressure, time and electrons when you take these clowns seriously, you end up legitimising their views.

    You know better, ignore them, they know they can wind you up, that is why they do it.

    Don’t play their game.

    • Pinkie said,

      There we get Morality’s Ghost as his best/worst. Nothing to say other than his opponents are wrong and probably malign in intent. (The sucking-up to blog owners is standard.)

      • Richard Armbach said,

        Pinkie no sucking up here. I have been banned by Cif watch and Jews sans Frontieres. I bet you can’t claim that

      • Modernity's Ghost said,

        Pinkie the Thicko, as ever.

        I’ll explain my attitude, just so you understand (chance would be a fine thing):

        1. Elf, etc are not my opponents, they are irrational windup merchants.

        2. Jim pays them far too much attention, which in turn helps to legitimises their cranky views.

        3. If you wouldn’t discuss complex issues with someone from the Flat Earth society then why waste any time with Elf and co?

        4. Because NO matter what you say, they’ll ignore it and carry on regardless.

        5. If you want to shout at people and they back, then do so, but rational types will find that approach a bit weird.

        Pinkie, I appreciate you won’t grasp any of that…

  57. Richard Armbach said,

    Am I getting this right ? It is an established fact that the Fair Play Group fund Engage ?

  58. Pinkie said,

    Dear old Morality’s Ghost, of course I don’t understand what you are saying, that is a common feature of those who disagree with you, apparently.

    Best not to engage with Mark Elf, Morality, it might demand that you have something rational to say.

    Who cares?

  59. Jim Denham said,

    Frankly, though I have no principled objection to engaging with the antisemitic “left”, people like Mr Elf are just a tedious and somewhat distasteful pain in the arse.

  60. Modernity's Ghost said,

    Jim,

    It wasn’t so much about a “principled objection”, rather the fact you know what is going to happen.

    Even if you made the best, lucid and incisive arguments possible then Elf and co will say “they are irrelevant, just answer our points”, etc

    Which ultimately isn’t very rational, to argue with those you have no common ground with, on subjects where your interlocutors are not serious and only seek to wind you up, etc etc

    I appreciate that Trots like arguing for arguments sake, but it ain’t terribly rational to us, non-Trots…just saying!

  61. levi9909 said,

    There is no rational argument against the ET judgment. If there was we wouldn’t have got such a misleading and inaccurate post from Hirsh nor such a load of barking bullshit from Jim. I don’t think Jim or any his supporters on this thread have actually addressed the issues raised. Oh except Jim. who can’t seem to find evidence for his statement about the funding of Engage which has been seemingly denied by both Hirsh and the CEO of the Board of Deputies.

  62. Modernity's Ghost said,

    Pinkie,

    Elf is abusive towards Jim i.e “such a load of barking bullshit from Jim”

    So now, you expect Jim to do Elf a favour and side with him?

    I am sure that even you can see the anomaly there?

    • Pinkie said,

      And calling all and sundry ‘antisemitic’ is ….?

      • Modernity's Ghost said,

        Pinkie,

        So you couldn’t see the incongruity?

        Surely it was obvious?

        Elf was asking Jim to concede a contentious point, yet almost in the same breath he was being abusive to Jim. Thus, Elf expected Jim to accept being abused (ie. “a load of barking bullshit from Jim”) then roll over and be agreeable.

        Which, all in all, shows a complete lack of understanding of human psychology.

        If you doubt that argument, find someone you barely know, insult them for a good 5 or 10 minutes and then ask them to do you a favour.

        In all probability you won’t find them agreeable, but I would have thought that was obvious? Just surprised you and other couldn’t see that.

      • levi9909 said,

        In other words Mod has found a tiny crumb to excuse all the ducking and diving that he, Sarah, Timon, Jim and probably other zionists I didn’t notice or can’t remember have engaged in throughout the entire thread.

        As you pointed out Pinkie, me insulting Jim as “barking bullshit” was a last resort whereas for Jim and Mod the insults are their first resort.

        And on the matter of incongruity, apparently Mod sees no incongruity between Jim’s rejection of a “bourgeois court” judgment in the FUCU case but appears to support his own interpretation (which might or might not be the correct one) of the result in the Donnachie case.

        So now Mod has five excuses for him and his friends failing to engage with rational reality-based argument: Their interlocutors are either stupid, trolls, antisemitic or they have no common ground or they are insulting. Or maybe they are a combination of some or all of those things.

        But let’s not let Mod’s psychology class derail the thread still further. Here is the only zionist response to the ruling which acknowledges precisely what the case was all about:
        http://tinyurl.com/brv5lcc

        It involved not just the looney fringe but central figures in the community, who have been branded exaggerators, manipulators and arrogant liars. More importantly, the ‘anti-Zionism equals racism’ argument is plainly bankrupt and has no purchase in wider society.

        Jim, Mod, Sarah, Timon et al, take note and please stop bullshitting.

      • Modernity's Ghost said,

        Pinkie,

        I notice one of Elf’s new argument is about saying “anti-Zionism does NOT equal racism “.

        Whilst I’m not terribly interested in engaging with him on that topic, but it does raise an interesting question.

        If political anti-Zionism contains no racism (and please note my usage**) then, you and other activists will have to explain away a lot of history:

        1) how the Soviet “anti-Zionist” campaigns of the 1960s fed antisemitism in Eastern Europe

        2) why modern political “anti-Zionists” are often found in proximity to antisemitic or neo-Nazi material (I can provide numerous examples, if you doubt that).

        If there is *NO* connection between modern political “anti-Zionism” and racism, then racist material should not be found anywhere near it.

        But it is…

        —-

        **PS: Before the bleeding obvious question, I have stated dozens of times that I do not believe anti-Zionism, necessarily, to be inherently antisemitic. Search Google I have said it for years.

      • levi9909 said,

        Mod

        Racists take their opportunities where they can. Demands for better, cheaper housing are exploited by racists as are demands for higher wages. No one suggests that demands for better housing or wages contain racism within them but the EDL and BNP are always exploiting issues with houses and wage levels.

        Similarly, anti-zionism being opposed to a state established specifically for the world’s Jews will be exploited by antisemites. Fucking obvious really. But whereas zionism is intrinsically racist because it involves colonial settlement. ethnic cleansing and segregationist laws, anti-zionism is not intrinsically racist. It is however, as susceptible to racist opportunism as any other political movement. Of course, zionism has also attracted its own fair share of antisemites as Herzl himself predicted. I don’t you asking why that is the case or even acknowledging that it is the case.

        There is of course a problem with your disclaimer about whether or not anti-zionism amounts to antisemitism. You never define zionism. you never, therefore, define anti-zionism, and you seem to support the discredited EUMC working definition of antisemitism which certainly appears to suggest that anti-zionism is intrinsically antisemitic and indeed suggests that all criticism of Israel is antisemitic unless other states are criticised for the same things. All of which was totally discredited at the Tribunal which Dr Hirsh so misrepresented in the post here.

        Can you now stop ducking and diving and fuck off?

        Ta if you can.

        **********************
        Mr Elf: I for one have had enough of your irrelevant posturing, slippery evasions and excuses for antisemtism at every turn. You are no longer either use nor ornament. So if anyone’s going to stop ducking and diving and fuck off, it’s going to be you.

        Goodbye.

        From Jim Denham

      • Modernity's Ghost said,

        Jim,

        I see your cunning plan, giving Elf enough rope eh?

        I *do* sympathise with such an approach, but surely there are obvious limits?

        You’ll notice I made a very specific point in my contribution of April 13, 2013 at 2:32 pm, yet Elf can’t understand what it was, thus discusses everything else but the issue.

        I fear that is true for many political “anti-Zionists”.

        They simply can’t fathom out the issues, so I would argue there is limited benefit in any exchange with them, given they can’t understand what you are saying, although I appreciate there is some humour in your approach.

      • Modernity's Ghost said,

        Pinkie,

        In all of this, my main objection is not that we disagree over the Middle East. I would expect that.

        Rather that you, many Trots/ex-Trots, etc don’t seriously engage with the question of, why are political “anti-Zionists” often found in the company of, or have pushed links to neo-Nazi material?

        If you are serious about your anti-racist belief then you might start asking such questions, and at least make a genuine effort to find out why that happens so frequently.

      • Yossi Benayoun said,

        What on Earth is a political “anti-Zionist”, and how do they differ from any other sort of anti-Zionist? Have you spent so long speaking a language of your own that you forget how foolish you sound? And wouldn’t you be better challenging people’s views, rather than obsessing over what websites friends of their friends might have frequented? You really do come off as some sort of weirdo.

      • Modernity's Ghost said,

        You can almost guarantee that you have to explain the obvious and simplest expressions to most modern “anti Zionists” and University-educated ex-Trots, etc around this topic.

        A political “anti Zionist” is, one who disagrees with the establishment, creation or continued existence of Israel on political grounds, as opposed to other criteria.

        Now, “Yossi Benayoun”, if you did not know that, then possibly, you know next to nothing about the Middle East

        It might be time to read a book, or at very least rethink your inability to understand simple political language.

      • Yossi Benayoun said,

        Now, “Modernity’s Ghost”, what are these other criteria?
        I’ve read plenty of books thank-you. And they haven’t led me to communicate in hints and allegations, in a language all my own. Do you often feel the need to abuse those you’ve only just met online, and know nothing about?

      • Modernity's Ghost said,

        I am sure you’ve read plenty of books and don’t need me to explain the obvious, even though I have to .

        But what does surprise me is that most of the participants in these debates are so ill versed in 1) anti racism 2) its parallels 3) an understanding of historical and modern racism 4) show an inability to apply all of that to contemporary examples.

        It is a pity that those who wish to discuss racism don’t appear to be interested in the topic enough to read, think or discuss it with any seriousness.

        Because if they were serious then they wouldn’t ask asinine questions, sneer and play games.

        Well, “Yossi Benayoun” please feel free to nitpick. I won’t indulge your pettiness again, for a seemingly educated individual you should know better.

  63. Jim Denham said,

    Mr Elf: I’m political, anti-racist and a socialist. I don’t simply go along with what the ruling class and their bourgeois courts decide. It seems that you do, especially when they defend that age-old British ruling class tradition of anti-Semitism.

    • levi9909 said,

      I’m political, anti-racist and a socialist. I don’t simply go along with what the ruling class and their bourgeois courts decide.

      Re Political, I don’t think you like the analysis thing. I think your anti-racist credentials are, “to put it at its very lowest, open to question.” (para 157) Furthermore, I think your socialism must be defined in a non-socialist sort of a way. And you seem to accept the result in the case of Paul Donnachie without any consideration of the facts of the case.

      But in the FUCU case you seem to be rejecting the judgment out of hand without even having read it.

      See, I reject the finding of the Paul Donnachie case because he clearly didn’t abuse the guy for being Jewish. He abused him for being a zionist. The FUCU tribunal found that support for the zionist project isn’t a protected characteristic of Jews, which of course is correct. In fact I wonder now if the ET might have given Paul Donnachie new grounds for appeal. Scottish law’s a different system of course, but there are persuasive precedents. Hopefully this FUCU judgment will act as one.

    • Jim Denham said,

      I think Mod’s term “political anti Zionism” is a polite version of what I (and the AWL) call “left anti-Semitism.”

      • Modernity's Ghost said,

        No, Jim, it is not.

        If I had wanted to use your expression, Jim, I would have used it. But I didn’t.

        Historically, there are various forms of anti-Zionism, some are political and some are religious.

        Therefore, it is logical and intellectually consistent to differentiate between the two.

        I should say I find the AWL’s use of terminology in this area to be often clumsy and maladroit, but that’s another matter.

      • Jim Denham said,

        Ah! You mean who oppose Jewish nationalism and/or the existence of the state of Israel on political grounds, as opposed to religious fundamentalists like these
        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neturei_Karta
        ?

  64. flyingrodent said,

    Re: Paul Donnachie – the court found him guilty of bawbaggery, with a specifically anti-Israeli aggravation. The result would’ve been the same if the victim was French, or Honduran, or from Burkina Faso.

    I don’t have any problem with that, and you shouldn’t either, if you believe your own patter. The law treats Israel exactly the same as all other nations, as it should.

    • levi9909 said,

      I think the victim in the case was a Jewish American, not an Israeli. Maybe he’s dual nationality:
      http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-edinburgh-east-fife-17908938

      Certainly Donnachie’s conduct wasn’t based on him being Jewish or Israeli but on the perception that he was actively promoting Israel’s zionist project of colonial settlement, ethnic cleansing and segregationist laws, without which, arguably, Israel could not exist.

      Even if I accept the result, I cannot accept that the case involved antisemitism, which is what Jim is saying.

      Also, let’s not run away from the fact that Jim is rejecting out of hand an ET judgment which he appears not to have read because it is a “bourgeois court” but accepting and spinning. the result of another “bourgeois court”.

      • levi9909 said,

        Sorry, I should be clear. I still there were grounds for prosecution but not on grounds that the conduct was “racially aggravated”.

    • levi9909 said,

      Invading someone’s room and messing with their belongings a la Donnachie is worth a prosecution, I disagree with the racially aggravated bit.

      You should study that exchange between Flying Rodent and me, Jim. It’s what an *honest* disagreement looks like.

  65. Jim Denham said,

    Mr Elf: I suggest you make your mind up, and think about what you’re writing before you write it.

    I wrote (above), “Next time another member of the SPSC racially abuses a Jew (in the tradition of Paul Donnachie) this is the judgement which will be wheeled out in an attempt to defend their actions.”

    I’d say you’ve just proved my point.

    • levi9909 said,

      Woops, went under wrong comment:

      My mind’s pretty much made up but I’m always open to persuasion. Pity you’re not:

      Invading someone’s room and messing with their belongings a la Donnachie is worth a prosecution, I disagree with the racially aggravated bit.

      You should study that exchange between Flying Rodent and me, Jim. It’s what an *honest* disagreement looks like.

  66. Richard Armbach said,

    Rev Sizer posted links to racist web sites Jim ?
    http://hoffmanchronicled.wordpress.com/1703-2/

  67. Andrew said,

    Jim, I don’t think anybody is challenging your right to use your own peculiar definition of “antisemitism” or “left antisemitism” or “political antisemitism” or whatever you want to call it using whatever abstruse theories you like. That’s just a matter of your labels that you like to use and we can assess what we think of your labels for ourselves. The tribunal didn’t rule on definitions. Really if you fancy “antisemitism” could mean a preference for haddock over cod. Whatever.

    What would be nice is some acknowledgement that Hirsh and co have got the facts wrong on much (if not all) of this eg. the parliamentary committee, the behaviour at conferences, the handling of the activist’s list etc. After all it is a workers’ organisation that you are smearing so you should at least take care with the facts.

    Given that you’ve read the ruling that is.

  68. Monsuer Jelly More Bounce to the Ounce (Much More Bounce) OOps upside your Head this time with feeling said,

    just about every ceurnt arguing with Denham here is an out and out antisemite. each and everyone of them. Blatent scummy jew hating filth. fact.

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