In the first incident, the Liberal Democrat MP for Bradford East, David Ward, issued this statement: http://davidward.org.uk/en/article/2013/654457/bradford-mp-condemns-israel-for-treatment-of-palestinians-on-the-day-he-signs-the-holocaust-memorial-day-book-of-commitment
As well as the inappropriate timing, it contains three offensive references in this section: “I am saddened that the Jews, who suffered unbelievable levels of persecution during the Holocaust, could within a few years of liberation from the death camps be inflicting atrocities on Palestinians in the new State of Israel and continue to do so on a daily basis in the West Bank and Gaza.”
- It implies that “the Jews”, as victims of the Holocaust, should have learned lessons from it, rather than putting that onus on the perpetrators.
- It lazily implies that Jews are collectively responsible for anything Israel does.
- It makes a grotesque and direct comparison between the genocide perpetrated by the Nazis and the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians. In fact it uses language that is more extreme to describe Israel’s behaviour “atrocities” than that of the Nazis (“persecution”). The European working definition of antisemitism says that “Drawing comparisons of contemporary Israeli policy to that of the Nazis” is a form of antisemitism (http://www.european-forum-on-antisemitism.org/working-definition-of-antisemitism/english/).
Unbelievably, some anti-Israel campaigners have been defending Mr Ward and saying they agree with his disgraceful analogy between the Nazis and Israel. Lib Dem MEP Chris Davies has said on Twitter “Lib Dem leadership quite wrong to ‘reprimand’ David Ward. Makes Nick look like being in Israel’s pocket. In fact he is a fierce critic.”
We think the Liberal Democrat Party needs to take disciplinary action against Mr Ward and Mr Davies by withdrawing the whip from them. If you agree, please email them immediately to express your views.
Please do this as soon as possible as we understand Mr Ward has been summoned to meet the whips today (Monday morning).
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