Your chants, placards and hate are shamefully unoriginal
6 November 2023
Another Saturday, another anti-Israel protest, another weekend in which British Jews are exposed to an outpouring of hate in our capital and across the UK - Manchester, Birmingham, Leeds, Liverpool, Newcastle, the list goes on.
For decades now CST has been writing and talking about the relationship between Israel, antisemitism and the groups and individuals that place themselves at the centre of the pro-Palestinian movement. It therefore won’t surprise you to know that for decades CST has been evidencing the antisemitism, extremism and deep illiberalism that manifests on these marches, rallies and protests. If you don’t believe us, check out our publications section.
In 2002 it was al-Muhajiroun activists dressed up as suicide bombers in Trafalgar Square as the violence of the second intifada raged in Israel. In 2006 it was the placards that read “we are all Hizbullah” and the ones with the face of Hassan Nasrallah emblazoned across them, the words “boycott Israel” written above. In 2009 it was the riot that broke out outside the Israeli embassy that left shop windows smashed in, as “Women and children took cover in doorways”, and a police officer was left unconscious. In 2014 it was the “Hitler you were right” sign and the placard promoting The Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion. It’s the Israel-Nazi comparisons, it’s the blood, it’s the chants of “Khaybar, Khaybar ya yahud”, it’s the so called “small pockets” of antisemitism that appear over and over and over again.
At some point you have to ask the question, just how big those pockets are? And now in 2023, after the worst massacre of Jews since the Holocaust, the evidence is once again clear for all to see.
There is a deep irony in the fact that it is those same people who often demand that Jews must qualify their support for Israel by recognising its flaws or distancing themselves from its government, are unwilling or unable to recognise and call out the pernicious antisemitism that marches alongside them and that rings loudly in their ears. Why must Jews take responsibility for a conflict that rages thousands of miles away, whilst you cannot take responsibility for the hate that is perpetrated right next to you?
These marches and the movement that facilitates them is the same as it has ever been, the same tired chants, the same tired placards, the same tired antisemitism. It’s shamefully unoriginal.