UK election: What the parties say about Palestine


palestineby Stuart Littlewood


Britain’s ferocious warmongering in Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya, and efforts to destabilise Syria, caused havoc in those countries and earned us a reputation for human misery making. This week our misbegotten chickens came home to roost in an unbearably distressing way as desperate refugee-migrants drowned at sea hundreds at a time.

Everyone is baying for the blood of the human traffickers while nobody from among Westminster’s ‘elite’ has yet been arrested for war crimes.

We must remember that Britain’s capacity for making life hell for innocent peoples of the Middle East goes back much further. It is nearly 100 years since we created what Lord Sydenham called “a running sore in the East” by promising not the Jewish people but Zionist extremists a homeland for Jews in Palestine, without consulting the indigenous Muslim and Christian Arabs.

And this year marks the centenary of the McMahon-Hussein Agreement of October 1915 in which Sir Henry McMahon, acting on behalf of the British government, met with Sharif Hussein of Mecca and made what were taken to be a series of promises to the Arab people for their help in defeating Germany’s ally Turkey. Hussein reasonably interpreted the correspondence from McMahon as a clear indication that Palestine would be given to the Palestinians once the war had ended.

This was before Arthur Balfour’s infamous letter to Lord Rothschild. McMahon’s prior promises were later disputed by the British government.

“No Jewish state, thank you,” said Jews

After the war the Zionists, hitching a ride on the British request to be granted a mandate over Palestine in order to implement the Balfour Declaration, asked to submit their proposal for Palestine to the 1919 Paris Peace Conference. They claimed that “the land itself needs redemption. Much of it is left desolate. Its present condition is a standing reproach. Two things are necessary for that redemption – a stable and enlightened government, and an addition to the present population which shall be energetic, intelligent, devoted to the country, and backed by the large financial resources that are indispensable for development. Such a population the Jews alone can supply.”

As reported by the New York Times, 5 March 1919,  prominent US Jews opposed the idea and handed President Woodrow Wilson a statement objecting to the Zionists’ plan, asking him to submit it to the peace conference. It said the scheme to reorganise the Jews as a national unit with territorial sovereignty in Palestine “not only misrepresents the trend of the history of the Jews, who ceased to be a nation 2000 years ago, but involves the limitation and possible annulment of the larger claims of Jews for full citizenship and human rights in all lands in which those rights are not yet secure. For the very reason that the new era upon which the world is entering aims to establish government everywhere on principles of true democracy, we reject the Zionistic project of a national home for the Jewish people in Palestine.”

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Foreseeing the problems with uncanny accuracy, it went on to say that the fundamental principles of democracy assert equal rights for all citizens of a state, irrespective of creed or ethnic descent and “should be applied in such a manner as to exclude segregation of any kind… Any such plan of segregation is necessarily reactionary in its tendency, undemocratic in spirit and totally contrary to the practices of free government….

“We ask that Palestine be constituted as a free and independent state, to be governed under a democratic form of government recognizing no distinctions of creed or race or ethnic descent… We do not wish to see Palestine, either now or at any time in the future, organized as a Jewish State.”

So responsible Jews wanted no such thing as a two-state set-up. But Wilson apparently failed to put their document before the Conference. The rest is history.

As a result of Zionist chicanery and the Western powers’ compliance Palestinian Muslims and Christians have been under the longest and cruellest military occupation in recent history, with millions driven from their lands and homes at gunpoint and still living in refugee camps. Those who remained are regularly massacred, live in fear of arbitrary arrest and imprisonment – even the children – and have their lives disrupted and made unbearable in every way imaginable. And their economy is paralysed.

Such ingratitude on the part of ‘Great’ Britain.

Backsliders all

So how do the present political parties of Britain, chief architect of this Middle East powder keg, view the Palestinians’ fate and what do they propose doing about it?

In October, Labour leader Ed Miliband ordered his MPs in parliament to back the motion to recognize Palestine as an independent state. Today he has cooled and sings a different tune: “What we said at the time of that vote was that it was a vote about the principle of recognition. And clearly a decision about when recognition would take place was dependent on how it would constructively help negotiations.

“I am not going to get into, today, speculation about when that would precisely be. That is a judgement we would have to take at the time.”

The Labour Party election manifesto says: “We remain committed to a comprehensive two-state

solution – a secure Israel alongside a viable and independent state of Palestine. There can be no military solution to this conflict and all sides must avoid taking action that would make peace harder to achieve. Labour will continue to press for an immediate return to meaningful negotiations leading to a diplomatic resolution.”

They are either completely out of touch with the reality or they’re supporting the Zionists’ game-plan designed to buy more time by once again shunting Palestinians’ claims to freedom and independence into the sidings. And once again Labour pleads security for Israel and only viability for the Palestinians. Why can’t they at least be even-handed?

The Conservatives’ manifesto states: “We will support a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, robustly defending the right of Israel to protect its security, while continuing to condemn illegal settlement building, which undermines the prospects for peace. We will stand up for the freedom of people of all religions to practise their beliefs in peace and safety, for example by supporting persecuted Christians in the Middle East.”

That noble offer, however, does not extend to the persecuted Christians and Muslims under Israeli occupation in the Holy Land. It would annoy their very dear friends in the thuggish Israeli regime.

The Conservatives “continue to reject Russia’s illegal annexation of Crimea” but cannot bring themselves to mention, let alone reject, the Israelis’ illegal annexation of the West Bank and East Jerusalem, and their ongoing brutal occupation of the Holy Land.

The Liberal Democrats say they “remain committed to a negotiated peace settlement to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, which includes a two-state solution. We condemn disproportionate force used by all sides. We condemn Hamas’ rocket attacks and other targeting of Israeli civilians. We condemn Israel’s continued illegal policy of settlement expansion, which undermines the possibility of a two-state solution. We support recognition of the independent State of Palestine as and when it will help the prospect of a two-state solution.” Another mealy-mouthed statement that makes no commitment to immediate action and leaves plenty of wriggle room for Israel to prolong their occupation indefinitely.

Neither Labour nor the LibDems calls for an end to the occupation. Neither is even-handed in its framing of the situation. And the Conservatives insult us with double-speak.

You’d think that a relative newcomer like the United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP) would be untrammelled by Zionist dogma. Far from it. A couple of years ago, in its foreign affairs policy statement ‘Out of the EU, into the world’ (now taken down), UKIP said it “fully supports the right of Israel to exist as a Jewish state… Israel is surrounded by hostile states committed to its destruction. The tiny state has been the frequent victim of rocket attacks and suicide bombings from terrorist groups, almost all deliberately targeting civilians. Israel has every right to respond with proportionate force to these attacks, and a UKIP government would do the same were Britain similarly threatened.

“UKIP rejects the notion that Israel should be punished through sanctions or cancellation of trade deals (such as the EU-Israel Association Agreement) for defending itself from attack…. It is not for us to set the boundaries for any peace deal. This is an issue the Israelis and Palestinians must work out between themselves…” It read like it was written in Tel Aviv.

UKIP’s leader Nigel Farage has been described by the Jewish Chronicle as “a good friend of Israel”. The party’s secretary Michael Zuckerman set up a Friends of Israel group in the party. “There is tremendous support for Israel within UKIP,” Zuckerman told the newspaper. The group has the backing of party leader Farage and others among their MEPs, he said.

In its 2015 manifesto UKIP merely says: “We want to see a peaceful, two-state solution in Israel and the Palestinian territories.”

The SNP ‘s guidance to election candidates recommends that when questioned by the media they should say: “I consider the construction of Israeli settlements on occupied Palestinian land in the West Bank and East Jerusalem to be illegal and unjustifiable. Yes, these settlements are recognised as illegal under international law.”

If asked further views they are authorised to say:

  • “SNP MPs voted in favour of the recognition of Palestine in a vote on the issue on October 13th 2014. The Scottish Government has also urged the UK Government to formally recognise the State of Palestine.”
  • “The SNP view the blockade [of Gaza] as collective punishment.”
  • “The Scottish Government strongly discourages trade with companies active in Israeli settlements which are recognised as illegal under international law. Scottish Government has published guidance for public purchasers on dealing with companies that may be involved in illegal Israeli settlements.”

But when it came to their election pledge the SNP simply said: “We will call on the next UK government to pursue a two-state solution for Israel and Palestine and to support the formal recognition of a Palestinian state.”

The parties are so busy dancing to the hardline Zionist tune that they fail to acknowledge the original Jewish wish for there to be no Jewish state at all. They’re all pressing for a two-state arrangement arrived at by endless, futile and utterly discredited negotiation. They claim to be champions of international law but are not prepared to let the law settle it.

For decades international law has been a stranger to the Holy Land. It is never allowed to visit. Why not? Because Western leaders, who rush to wrap themselves in the rule of law and the UN Charter when dealing with regimes they don’t like, have been instructed by their puppet masters to love and cherish the Zionist thugs of the Tel Aviv regime.

“Law” and “justice” are words that seldom if ever pass the lips of our politicians when discussing the ‘Palestine Question’ — or shouldn’t that be properly called the ‘Israel Question’? In the UK there is still no rush, it seems, to deliver law or justice to the situation after 100 years of betrayal.

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