by Roddy Keenan/ Dublin/
‘A bad day for anti-semites’. These are the words of the UK Chancellor of the Exchequer, Sajid Javid, referring to the Conservative Party’s UK general election victory, and accusing 10 million or more British Labour Party voters of being ‘anti-semitic’ in the process.
It is no coincidence that Javid, a key ally of Prime Minister Boris Johnson, is himself a leading light in the Conservative Friends of Israel group and a loyal and unwavering supporter of the Israeli apartheid state. Consequently, his use of vile and disgusting rhetoric is no surprise. Indeed, many would argue, it is the very mark of the man.
To any sentient follower of UK politics however, it is clear that the election of a rabidly Islamophobic and Zionist Conservative Party will doubtless spell more injustice towards, and attacks on, the Palestinian cause. Within the party election manifesto, the Conservatives launched a blatant attack on the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign, stating the party’s intention to prevent local authorities around the country from engaging in any such actions.
‘We will ban public bodies from imposing their own or indirect boycotts, disinvestment or sanctions campaigns against foreign countries,’ the manifesto states.
Bizarrely, this policy was articulated in the ‘Make Our Country Safer’ section of the manifesto under a sub-heading, ‘Supporting All Victims of Crime’. It follows a sentence stating that the Conservative Party ‘will ensure that those countering extremism are protected from threats and intimidation.’
It would seem that the peaceful BDS campaign against an extremist, racist and apartheid regime, a regime that injures, maims and murders innocent Palestinians without compunction, is itself characterised as extremist, while the apartheid state is portrayed as the victim. Orwell meets Kafka in Wonderland, while Alice looks on.
After an election where the media hammered the Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn for his non-existent anti-semitism, the English and Welsh public (but not the Scottish) voted for a government led by Boris Johnson, a man, who in stark contrast with Corbyn, regularly demonstrates his innate racism publicly and shamelessly, such as when he described Muslim women wearing a niqab as looking like letter boxes.
The pro-Zionism of the newly-elected Conservative Party suggests that Israel will have an even greater influence within Whitehall than it already enjoys. Johnson himself has described the Balfour Declaration as ‘a great thing’ that ‘reflected a great tide of history’, and the Nakba as ‘one of the most stunning achievements’ of the 20th century.
Another influential member of the UK government expected to play a key role in the next administration will be Priti Patel, who was Home Secretary under Johnson prior to the election. Patel has long ties with Zionism and was forced to resign in disgrace from the government in 2017 after it emerged she had been having secret meetings with Israeli officials.
A government minister under then Prime Minister Theresa May, Patel had been holding meetings with members of the Israeli regime, lobbyists and business leaders while ostensibly on a ‘holiday’. When these meetings were revealed, it was clear that Patel had violated the ministerial code of conduct and was forced to resign. Interestingly, one of the people she met was Gilat Erdan, the Israeli minister responsible for the secret war against BDS involving Mossad under the guidance of the Ministry of Strategic Affairs.
However, Patel’s dishonesty and violation of codes of conduct meant little to Boris Johnson, and on becoming Prime Minister in July, he gave her the leading Cabinet position of Home Secretary. Birds of a feather……
Consequently, it seems apparent that the election of the Conservative Party in the UK will ensure Zionism’s influence increases over the next five years.There are also important issues such as upcoming trade discussions with the United States which could have ramifications for Palestine. With the UK having to jump to Trump’s tune within these negotiations, Johnson’s government may come under pressure from the Trump administration in relation to moving the UK embassy to Jerusalem. Should this be the case, Johnson, the British poodle, will no doubt do as his master, US President Donald Trump, dictates.
But ultimately, one thing is certain. The victory of a Conservative Party imbued with Zionist, pro-apartheid Israel views and policies, will see a significant increase in efforts to shut down free speech, and to prevent the British public from demonstrating their solidarity with the Palestinian people.
However, as long as the people of Palestine face dispossession, injustice, and exploitation, as long as they are being injured, maimed and murdered by the occupying forces,and as long as Palestinian men, women and children refuse to accept the diktats of an apartheid regime, the clarion calls for justice will never be silenced, either within Palestine, or far beyond.