Tag: United Kingdom
Israelis do not hanker for a return to the days of the British Mandate. Nor do they hide secret reservoirs of nostalgia for the sometimes-brutal British colonial police who once strutted about their streets. But they did react with undisguised pleasure to the decision by the UK Foreign Office last month that the future king, Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, would this year make the first official visit to Israel by a senior member of the British royal family...
I have always felt a profound debt of gratitude to Britain. It did not roll out the red carpet but, rather impassively, it offered me a refuge and the opportunity to lead a normal life of anonymity, which is the blessing of a big city.
No more. Like many other Jews, I no longer feel at ease in Britain.
The recent British election was a disaster for incumbent Prime Minister Theresa May and her Conservative Party.
Sir Gerald Kaufman was more than just another veteran Labour politician. Having entered the House of Commons in 1970, he was the longest-serving parliamentarian of any political hue... And, as an Orthodox Jew, he should have been revered by the Jewish community. Instead, when he died last month aged 86, not a tear of sadness touched the cheek of British Jewry.
The British decision to uncouple from the EU, expected to take effect by 2019, was not unqualified good news for Israel: Britain, along with Germany, has been among Israel's most stalwart diplomatic allies in the EU and its voice within the decision-making forums of the EU will be missed, particularly on the vexatious question of the "Middle East Peace Process"...
If it was true that you can judge a man by the company he keeps, Jeremy Corbyn would be an Israel-hating, antisemitic, Holocaust-denier. The newly elected leader of Britain's Labour Party would vehemently deny he is any of the above, but some of his best friends are one or more of these things.
My belated entry to the Twitter-sphere was prompted by a late-night BBC political chat show which featured a highly articulate Muslim apologist. She argued passionately that, by abusing free speech, Charlie Hebdo had itself incited the attack which killed eight of the magazine's staffers. My tweet to the programme's host expressed surprise that the killing of four Jews in a related attack at the Hyper Cacher supermarket in Paris had been forgotten so soon.
I was unprepared for the swift response that my tweet elicited from "Porky Scratchings", who urged the television host to ignore the Jews... "Not the bloody Jews," he/she wrote. "It's always about the Jews. They just seek publicity."
Transcending sentiment and pragmatic impulses was Thatcher's hard-nosed perception that the qualities of the Jewish community coincided precisely with her own aspirational vision for Britain: self-help and hard work, ambition and endeavour, enterprise, personal responsibility and social justice.