UK charities have criticized British Prime Minister David Cameron for signaling that the foreign aid budget could be diverted to the country’s Ministry of Defence (MoD).
Leading British charity against global poverty Oxfam reacted angrily after Cameron hinted Britain’s foreign aid budget could be spent on the country’s military adventures.
“The Prime Minister needs to be categorical that not one penny of aid can be raided by the MoD”, said Oxfam spokesperson Emma Seery, emphasizing that Britain must stick to his commitment.
Ben Jackson of Bond, representing 350 British aid groups and trustees, also condemned the decision to divert foreign aid budget to military and said, “There are strict definitions of aid that clearly preclude it from being spent on military equipment.”
Earlier in February, Cameron indicated that he is ready to divert aid budget to military.
The British PM said the Department for International Development works closely with both the Foreign Ministry and Ministry of Defense, adding that foreign interventions to prove a “basic level of stability and security” would be part of Britain’s “foreign aid”.
The decision to divert foreign aid to military seems primarily aimed at pacifying members of Cameron’s own Conservative Party, who oppose the prospect of cuts to the country’s military budget.
British Prime Minister David Cameron stood on the Indian soil recently, expressing condolences on the Amritsar massacre, the bloodbath of unarmed civilians in 1919. But Britain had committed far more shameful crimes against this former colony which no condolence could ever cleanse.
Britain’s testing poisonous gas on Indian soldiers before WWII is among the most notorious atrocities in Britain’s colonial history, leaving hundreds of Indians dead and the surviving victims severely injured.
According to the discovered National Archive documents, British military scientists from the Porton Down chemical warfare establishment in Wiltshir sent Indian soldiers into gas chambers to test mustard gas during more than a decade of experiments that began in the early 1930s before the Second World War.
The experiments, which took place in Rawalpindi military site, now in Pakistan, aimed at determining the amount of poison gas needed to produce a casualty on the battlefield.
According to the revealed document, these tests were part of a much larger program intended to test the effects of chemical weapons on human beings.
Being exposed to mustard gas, many Indian soldiers suffered severe burns on their skin, including their genitals, leaving them in pain for days and even weeks. Some had to be treated in hospital but British military did not even check up on the victims to see if any illnesses were developed.
“Severely burned patients are often very miserable and depressed and in considerable discomfort, which must be experienced to be properly realized,” the scientists wrote.
It is now recognized that mustard gas can cause cancer and severe damage to health.
But this is not the end of the story. More than 20,000 British soldiers were also subjected to nerve gas and mustard gas trials at Porton between 1916 and 1989, many of whom say they were deceived to take part in the experiments.
This question comes to one’s mind, how can Britain be an advocate of human rights in Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, and many other countries around the world, while the country has the poorest record of human rights violations all through its disgraceful history?!
Leaving the scandal of horsemeat contamination of processed meat products behind, the British prime minister David Cameron flew to India for a three-day visit (February 18-20), boasting the largest-ever trade delegation he had led to a foreign country. The aim of young Cameron was to clinch multi-million pound deals with the world’s second most populous nation, and a vibrant and rising economy. The reasons behind his mission to India were domestic as well as foreign.
Cameron leads a wobbly government in coalition with the Liberal Democratic Party, which has all but abandoned many of its policies on civil liberties, minority rights, the nature of Britain’s relationship with the European Union and the welfare state. In essence, the Liberal Democrats, whose leader Nick Clegg has the title of deputy prime minister with no portfolio, have become the enablers keeping in power a Conservative Party that is itself fatally divided over how far right to move on some of the most fundamental issues.
Britain’s Conservative prime minister, his finance minister George Osborne, and a group of ministers to the right, are enforcing draconian cuts that, many experts complain, are making economic recovery more difficult. The Liberal Democrats have become supporters of war. A former Liberal Democrat leader, now a party grandee, Lord Paddy Ashdown, recently defended President Obama’s drone wars that, according to several authoritative studies including one by Stanford and New York Universities, have killed thousands of innocent people. In an astonishing defense of Obama’s “kill list,” Lord Ashdown asserted that the president’s policy had more accountability than ever before. A U.S. president secretly ordering to kill specific individuals, and others who happen to be in the targeted area, without Congressional or judicial scrutiny, is somehow “more accountable than ever”? One does not know what to say––except that power has clearly elevated Lord Ashdown and deputy prime minister Nick Clegg to a different planet.
Against this backdrop, Prime Minister Cameron went to India to seduce politicians in government and big business with a basket of offers. He reminded his hosts of India’s colonial links with Britain, and sought to press the Indian government to buy Eurofighters, in which Britain has a stake, instead of French multi-role combat planes already being negotiated. Cameron had been promising his party MPs that he would be pushing the deal aggressively, failing to realize that the Indians do not like being told by the British, especially by a Conservative prime minister. In such an event, the Indian response would likely be to buy from any one except India’s former colonial rulers.
Cameron leads a party which continues to live in the Churchillian past. He simply misread India’s historical development, and was badly advised as he embarked on his visit. Cameron failed to accept the reality that India, a country twenty times larger in population than the United Kingdom, was not a client state that could be pressured. The Indians would be courteous in welcoming him, but were quite capable of turning the tables, and would rebuff unwanted offers. The signs were there some while ago when India told Britain that it did not want a few hundred million pounds worth of British aid, describing it as “peanuts.” The British government’s increasingly hostile anti-immigrant rhetoric and policies to placate the political right at home were alienating many Indian residents and new students coming to Britain. The consequences of this went largely unnoticed in Cameron’s circle.
There is an unmistakable propensity in today’s Britain to blame “immigrants” and “asylum-seekers” for all the ills––from filth to chaos and crime in the streets, as well as unemployment among white Britons. Alienation and frustration of those less fortunate are alarming, but their causes are easier to explain. However, the eagerness of the political class to join in the chorus of xenophobic hysteria, and to craft legislation to placate the Right are much harder to understand because of the risks this entails. News reaches distant places with lightning speed in a globalized world. Indian students, increasingly better informed and direct, told the BBC, as Cameron sought to woo them, that they thought the British attitudes were a “little racist.” They would rather seek other destinations for education, or stay in their own country.
As he visited the historic Golden Temple of Amritsar and the nearby site of the 1919 Jallianwala massacre of hundreds of men, women and children, committed on the orders of General Reginald Dyer, Prime Minister Cameron described the episode as a “deeply shameful event.” But he stopped short of issuing an outright apology. That was not enough for historians and ordinary citizens alike in India. Among other questions raised was whether the British government would please return the Koh-i-noor to India. The world’s most precious diamond had been taken to Britain following the imperial power’s annexation of the Punjab into the Empire in 1849. For ten years prior to that, the British administrators had failed to execute the last will of the Punjab ruler Ranjit Singh, who had the diamond until his death. Cameron could not have agreed, so he said that he did not believe in “returnism.”
By the time the British prime minister met his Indian counterpart Manmohan Singh in Delhi, the deal to sell AgustaWestland helicopters to India seemed to have been scuppered. It was suggested to Cameron that Britain cooperate with the Indian authorities in providing more information about allegations that the Anglo-Italian helicopter manufacturer based in the United Kingdom had attempted to bribe influential figures to secure the deal with India. The British prime minister promised to do so, and returned home, leaving a “wish list” behind.
The idea that British rule in India was a force for good is not uncommon in Britain and even in certain sections of westernised Indian elite. Read right-of-centre British newspapers and you will regularly find articles and columns that glorify Britain’s colonial past, giving the impression that Britain was spreading the light of Western Civilisation to the dark corners of the world. Many British history books still do their best to highlight the benefits that British rule brought to the numerous colonies, rather than the hardships.
Recently in an interview with the BBC, Niall Ferguson, a British historian who has recently produced a six-part documentary series for Channel 4, and also works in a research department at Oxford University, said that British rule greatly benefited the ruled nations and people.
To be sure, many white Britons, perhaps even the majority, think that the colonial era is not something to be proud of. But at the same time it must be acknowledged that the idea of British rule as benevolent is not just a fringe idea. In this light it is worth examining some facts about the British Raj that are seldom discussed in the media.
History is never black and white. There are benefits that come out of otherwise bad situations. In the case of India, British rule certainly did have some benefits, such as development of previously absent infrastructure. Of course, colonial historians such as Niall Ferguson will be fast to point this out:
By the 1880s the British had invested £270 million in India, not much less than one-fifth of their entire investment overseas.
But at what cost were these investments made? The pro-colonial authors miss out or even cover-up some basic points about the British Raj, which should be the foundation of any debate about the ‘merits’ of colonialism.
The economic devastation of India under British rule is discernible from the fact that India’s share of world trade fell from 17% percent in 1800 (almost equal to America’s share of world trade in 2000) to less than 2%. It is a very telling fact that during British rule of India, British per capita gross domestic product increased in real terms by 347 per cent, Indian by a mere 14 per cent. But even more important are the famine statistics of British-controlled India.
According to British records, one million Indians died of famine between 1800 and 1825, 4 million between 1825 and 1850, 5 million between 1850 and 1875 and 15 million between 1875 and 1900. Thus 25 million Indians died in 100 years! Since Independence, although poverty still exists, there have been no such mass famines, a record of which India should be proud. Funnily enough, there is no mention of this by pro-colonial authors. It is certainly a strange omission on their part and something they should be ashamed of. Perhaps not surprising as it would make British investment in India seem trivial and pointless by comparison. Any rational person would rather avoid millions of deaths than have a few railway tracks built and some land irrigated.
How did these famines occur? The main reason was not bad weather or natural causes but rather the breaking up of India’s indigenous crop patterns. The British replaced food crops such as rice and wheat and instead forced Indian farmers to produce jute, cotton, tea and oil seeds, which they needed as raw materials for their home industries. The implication of this in times of shortages was catastrophic, as the famine figures show.
Niall Ferguson also credits the British with labouring to improve India’s public health:
It was the British who introduced quinine as an anti-malarial prophylactic, carried out public programmes of vaccination against smallpox – often in the face of local resistance – and laboured to improve the urban water supplies that were so often the bearers of cholera and other diseases.
Once again, there is some truth in this, but also some omission, and some downright distortion. On the subject of smallpox vaccination, it is well documented that before the British arrived, Indians had a system of immunisation against smallpox, in which cowpox was used inoculate against smallpox. The British doctor J Z Holwell wrote a book in 1767 describing the system, accepting that it was safe and effective. European medicine did not have any treatment against the disease at that time.
Inoculation against smallpox became a part of Western medicine by 1840. No sooner did that happen that the British in India banned the older method of vaccination, denouncing it as barbaric, without making certain that sufficient number of inoculators in the new technique existed. Smallpox in India became a greater scourge than before. This is not the only example in which the British undermined and even banned indigenous systems of knowledge, particularly medicine, creating dire consequences.
In writing this article I am not trying to stir up bitterness. As I have mentioned, many if not most white Britons see colonialism as a dark part of their history, and refrain from glorifying it or acting triumphant over it. I am simply trying to combat the smug, celebratory version of Imperial history that is in vogue in some circles. This distorted version of history should be discarded into the dustbin of history.
This article is dedicated to the millions men, women and children, of India as well as other nations, who perished in unnecessary and avoidable famines during the colonial era.
- British PM falls short of apology for India massacre (worldbulletin.net)
British Prime Minister David Cameron called off his long-awaited speech on the relations with the European Union on Friday to deal with the hostage-taking in Algeria as his country actively assisted France in its military intervention in Algeria’s neighbor Mali.
Cameron was outraged by, what he described in an address to the MPs on Thursday, as the Algerian government’s “all guns blazing” tactic against the “terrorist” kidnappers at BP’s In Amenas gas plant because it could endanger British and other western lives.
“I won’t hide, of course I was… we were disappointed not to be informed of the assault in advance,” Cameron told the MPs.
In effect, Cameron was telling Algeria that they are not supposed to be fighting “terrorists” at the cost of British lives while he and his French allies were – and are — exactly killing innocent Malians for the alleged ‘greater good’ they tend to name fighting terrorism.
There are no precise figures on the number of Malian civilians killed in the French Britain-assisted airstrikes near the country’s borders with Algeria but Human Rights Watch said on the second day of the attacks last Sunday that 10 civilians including three children, were killed during airstrikes.
The situation has also been grave enough for international organizations to call for restraint.
“Forces involved in armed attacks should avoid indiscriminate shelling at all costs, and do their utmost to prevent civilian casualties,” said Paule Rigaud, Amnesty International’s Africa deputy director.
However, there has been no such restr aint to the point that United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Melissa Fleming warned on Friday “that in the near future there could be up to 300,000 people additionally displaced inside Mali, and over 400,000 additionally displaced in the neighboring countries” many of them escaping indiscriminate attacks on Malian rebels and civilians.
Nor has Cameron advised French president Francois Hollande to hold back attacks to avoid collateral damage to women and children probably because their skins are not as white as the British hostages in Algeria.
This comes as Hollande said on Friday that the attack and hostage crisis in the remote desert gas plant show the French military intervention in Mali was justified.
However, one comes to think that matters are exactly the other way round, especially after the hostage-takers said their move was in response to the French intervention in Mali.
One should also note a report by Amnesty International on brutality on the part of the ally of Britain and France, the Malian government, against the Tuareg ethnic minority where rebels are rooted.
When the conflict originally exploded, Tuaregs were arrested, tortured, bombed and killed by the security forces, “apparently only on ethnic grounds”, Amnesty said in a report on December 21.
Meanwhile, last July, 80 inmates arrested by the Malian army were stripped to their underwear, jammed into a 5 sqm cell and cigarettes were burnt into their bodies.
Also, back in September 2012, 16 Muslim clerics were rounded up at a checkpoint and summarily executed by the Malian army, which is now Britain’s ally.
Indeed, Britain could apparently pat itself on the back for setting the stage for the kidnapping of its own nationals in Algeria by helping the Malian government.
Britain should also answer whether the “botched” Algerian operation to free hundreds of hostages that left a few western hostages killed would have been also botched if the hostages were not white westerners, or if the scenario was one of British forces and its allies pounding Malian targets with huge civilians casualties on people with darker skins.
The correct path to statehood is through implementation of international law and UN resolutions and the approval of the international community.
By Stuart Littlewood | Salem-News | December 14, 2012
(LONDON) – Britain’s prime minister David Cameron has again shown why he should stand down from British politics.
In a speech to Conservative Friends of Israel at a lunch the other day he said – and not for the first time – things that are deeply disturbing to people who expect him to put British interests first. He again compromised himself and this country with ridiculous pledges of support for a foreign military power whose behaviour is beyond the Pale and an affront to human decency. Here are some of his remarks…
“I am a passionate friend of Israel – and that’s the way it’s going to stay.”
In that case you shouldn’t be in British politics, Mr Cameron. You have fallen foul of the Seven Principles of Public Life, especially the principle of ‘Integrity’ which says quite simply: “Holders of public office should not place themselves under any financial or other obligation to outside individuals or organisations that might seek to influence them in the performance of their official duties.”
“We promised to stand up for Israel and in Government that’s exactly what we’ve done. We said it was ridiculous that Israeli officials felt unable to visit Britain because of the malicious and unfounded use of arrest warrants so we changed the law to end it.”
Unfounded? Tzipi Livni, for example, was responsible for launching the pre-meditated blitzkrieg four years ago which caused the deaths of 1,400 defenceless Gazans (including 320 children and 109 women), horribly maimed thousands more and caused immense devastation to essential infrastructure and services. She showed no remorse. Livni’s office issued a statement saying she was proud of Operation Cast Lead, and speaking later at a conference at Tel Aviv’s Institute for Security Studies, she said: “I would today take the same decisions.”
“We said we’d resist calls for boycotts on Israel and yes – we are going to keep on working with Israel, doing business with Israel, trading with Israel.”
Even though Israel is in continual breach of EU-Israel Agreement rules and forcibly prevents its neighbours, the Palestinians, from doing business and trade with the outside world…
“To me it is clear what needs to happen… We need the Palestinians to understand there is only one path to statehood, and that is through negotiations with Israel. We made that clear with that UN vote a couple of weeks ago.”
Wrong. The correct path to statehood is through implementation of international law and UN resolutions and the approval of the international community. Only when the illegal occupation is ended and the right of self-determination is restored can meaningful talks begin.
“We said that Britain could not support a resolution that set back the prospects for peace and that did not commit the Palestinians to return to negotiations without preconditions. Well: they did not provide the assurances that we asked for. So… we did not vote for it.”
Pure blackmail. Bullying Palestinians into resuming failed and discredited talks to bargain with the thief for the return of their lands and property when it is still being stolen with impunity, is utterly immoral. There can be no peace under occupation. And nobody ‘negotiates’ with a gun to their head, nor should they be expected to.
“And I have made something else clear that needs to be made clear to the Palestinians. Britain will never tolerate the obscenity of a football tournament named after a suicide bomber who killed 20 Israelis in a restaurant. We will not tolerate incitement to terrorism.”
This is about Wafa Idris. It has become a favourite rant and Cameron was banging on about it a couple of months earlier at another top Jewish gathering. According to The Jerusalem Post (September 2011) a Fatah-affiliated youth centre in the Ama’ari refugee camp near Ramallah named a sports event after female suicide bomber Wafa Idris, a 28 year-old paramedic who had been shot several times by Israeli rubber bullets during her work for the Red Crescent. Relatives said she was angry at seeing children shot and killed by the IDF in Ramallah. Idris was the first Palestinian woman to carry out a suicide bombing. The Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade, a subsidiary of Abbas’s Fatah (who are Cameron’s friends in Occupied Palestine), claimed responsibility for the bomb attack although her family said she was not known to be an activist with any Palestinian militant group.
Cameron, before opening his mouth, might have asked what led her to do it. Wafa Idris was born in the Ama’ari refugee camp. Set up by the Red Cross in 1949 it provided tents to refugees from Jaffa, Ramla and Lydda, towns allocated for an Arab state in the UN Partition but subjected to a bloody programme of ethnic cleansing in 1948.
In Lydda the Israelis massacred 426 men, women, and children. 176 of them were slaughtered in the town’s main mosque (See the lurid details here). Out of the 19,000 people who called Lydda home, only 1,052 were allowed to stay. The remainder were forced to walk into exile in the scalding July heat leaving a trail of bodies – men, women and children – along the way.
The slaughter in Lydda was led by a certain Moshe Dayan. The event was witnessed by two American newspapermen who reported that “practically everything in their way died. Riddled corpses lay by the roadside.” They saw “the corpses of Arab men, women and even children strewn about in the wake of the ruthlessly brilliant charge” (emphasis Aletho News ). This appalling war crime didn’t prevent Dayan becoming a great hero in Israel, and later defence minister and foreign minister.
Today Tel Aviv University has a Moshe Dayan Centre named after the war criminal, but I haven’t heard Cameron complain about that. Likewise the Menachem Begin Centre in West Jerusalem is named after the terrorist leader responsible for the bomb attack in 1946 on the British mandate government based in the King David Hotel, killing 91. Has Agent Cameron anything to say about that?
Back to the Ama’ari refugee camp, now run by the UNRWA, where Wafa Idris was obliged to live in squalor as a result of Israel’s criminal land-grab and forcible eviction of her parents from Ramla. At Ama’ari 10,500 people are squeezed into less than 1 square kilometre in dreadful conditions.
However the camp’s football team has won the Palestine football championship several times and qualified to represent Palestine in regional and international competitions.
The Arab media were lavish in their praise for Idris, the “courageous Palestinian girl”, and as a result she became a heroic symbol of Palestinian womanhood in their struggle to throw off the occupation. If it’s OK for Israel to name major institutions after its famous terrorists what right has Cameron to get upset when Palestinian football team similarly commemorates one of theirs?
“So, in Gaza too, Hamas need to know that they must renounce violence and they will not be allowed to dictate the way forward in the peace process.”
Does Cameron have the balls to tell Israel it too must renounce violence? Hamas, in case he has forgotten, is the legitimate democratic authority. He may not like it but he should respect it and work with them, like the good democratic he claims to be.
“Last month, when rockets rained down on Israel, we were unequivocal about the right of Israelis to live free from attack by terrorist groups on their border.”
When Gaza suffers air strikes on a daily basis, how unequivocal is Cameron about the right of Palestinians to live free from attack by the terrorist state occupying their lands?
“I’ve never had to run for cover as the air-raids sound overhead. I’ve never had to give gas masks to my children. I do understand that for the Israeli people, uncertainty isn’t such a great thing. It means instability. Anxiety. Fear.”
If he goes to Gaza he can experience fear and anxiety in abundance under Israeli air raids. I vividly remember as a kid being bombed by the Nazis every night in London – and not with garden-shed whizz-bangs. I remember German bombers flying at rooftop height down our street to avoid the anti-aircraft guns. At least they didn’t use white phosphorus like the Israelis.
Cameron’s hyper-partisan, head-over-heels friendship – no, obsession – with Israel is allowed to steer nearly every aspect of Britain’s foreign policy. What drives this? You need look no further than The Jewish Chronicle which in 2006 reported on the backers bankrolling David Cameron’s bid for power and provided a fascinating insight into how the pro-Israel lobby infiltrates government and destroys the principles of integrity and accountability so vital to public life.
When Cameron became Conservative leader he proclaimed:
“The belief I have in Israel is indestructible – and you need to know that if I become Prime Minister, Israel has a friend who will never turn his back on Israel.”
Agent Cameron is very careful not to let the words ‘justice’ and ‘law’ pass his lips in connection with Israel’s illegal occupation of the Holy Land. And he and his foreign secretary, Hague, will put on a wonderful show of hand-wringing, deploring and urging whenever Israel commits atrocities, but they never condemn the racist regime or use any obvious levers like suspension of trade or other sanctions.
On the contrary, they shamelessly find ways of rewarding the Israeli regime’s crimes against humanity, making us complicit with its racist ambitions.
© Stuart Littlewood 2012
- A letter to David Cameron (alethonews.wordpress.com)
- The cowardice at the heart of our relationship with Israel (telegraph.co.uk)
A letter to British Prime Minister David Cameron, following his speech at the Annual dinner of United Jewish Israel Appeal
Dear Mr Cameron, How self-interested and partisan was your speech last week to the Jewish Israel Appeal. Carefully pre-scripted, it said everything the Jewish Zionists in your audience wished to hear. Your final quips about settlement- building and house- demolitions were moral soundbites for the Media, to give the appearance of being fair minded and caring about the Law. Your audience knew full well, as indeed you do, that the government has not the slightest intention of lifting a finger to help the displaced victims of settlement-building and house demolitions. I happened to be in E.Jerusalem when the Al Khurd family were dragged out of their home by Jewish settlers and thrown, with all their belongings and children, onto the streets. The father of the family, who was disabled and in a wheelchair, died soon after this event. The family were left to live in a tent on a patch of land in front of their former home, able to see the comings and goings of the two young Jewish families who now inhabited their home. I’m puzzled by your allusion to a Jewish philanthropic spirit when I see such things. I was shocked to see the Israeli soldiers, “the most moral army in the world,” beating up a young Palestinian Christian farmer in Al Khadre near Bethlehem, whose land had been illegally annexed for the building of a military terminal. Shocked to see them breaking his arm by stamping on it and then trying to prevent the ambulance from taking him to hospital. Shocked to see them beating up courageous Israeli Jewish activists who had come to support the farmer. Shocked to learn that Palestinian women gave birth at checkpoints and sometimes lost their babies because the Jewish soldiers would not let them go through to reach the Maternity Hospital. Your audience must be flattered and bemused by the rosy view you have of such people. We, each of us, must individually choose to embrace a humane way of living and stand or fall by our own actions. It is not enough to lazily shelter under the supposed morality of any given inherited tradition.
May I remind you that you have Muslim and Christian citizens in this country. There are Moslems, Christians, Jews and Secular people both here and in Palestine who do not necessarily share your rosy view of Israel or of it’s Jewish or non-Jewish supporters. Many of us remember that when the UK helped bring Iraq to it’s knees through sanctions, a million innocent little children died as a result. Was the celebrated Jewish sense of justice offended by that? clearly your own conscience was not moved. Sanctions produced nothing good for the Iraqi people and did not prevent war. Quite the contrary: sanctions were, and continue to be, a hypocritical and cruel devise used by western powers to conceal their already well-laid plans for the invasion, destruction and de-development of Muslim, oil-rich countries.
Not satisfied with so many deaths in Iraq, Israel and it’s economic cohorts eagerly await the death of thousands more innocent people in Iran, another oil-rich Muslim country. Sanctions first to soften the people through impoverishment and death, to alienate their leaders, then, on the eve of invasion you will wring your hands in front of the world’s media and say “look, we tried peaceful measures first, didn’t we…” But starving a population, reducing them to poverty, is as violent and genocidal as other acts of war. It is particularly deplorable that you reveled in the implementation of plans to starve thousands of others while you were feasting and dining to your heart’s content in London. One is reminded of the rich man who, while feasting at his own table, refused Lazarus a crumb of bread.
Who has been the prime aggressor in the Middle East, invading Lebanon, Syria, Sinai, Gaza? Who has defied more UN Resolutions than any other country in the world? Who threatens daily the existence of Palestinians? who assassinates Palestine’s spiritual and political leaders? Who has imprisoned the Palestinian population behind walls? Who illegally imprisons and frequently tortures 7,000 Palestinian children annually? Who has made a Palestinian state impossible through it’s theft of land and refusal to acknowledge the right of Palestinian refugees to return to their legal lands? Who has dozens of discriminatory laws against it’s minority Arab population? You know the answer yet you are proud to have such friends.
You threaten invasion against a country for even thinking about developing a nuclear weapon, but befriend Israel which has more nuclear weapons than France and the UK together. What possible rationale can you have for such uneven-handedness apart from self-interested economic and financial advantage? Will you ever publicly or privately ask the Jewish community to face Israel’s iniquities? So you believe that the interests of thieves, child-abductors, torturers, criminals, racists and warmongers are written into the DNA of the Conservative Party. What a disquieting boast. But please do not presume to confer on all the British people such a questionable genetic makeup. I am British, Caucasian, educated, middle class, a pensioner. Boringly, boringly mainstream. Hardly a candidate for Muslim extremist. I neither share Israel’s “cultural DNA” nor embrace such an unscientific and foolish notion.
- Cameron warns UK students against boycotting Israel (foa.org.uk)
Thousands of veterans of Britain’s atomic and hydrogen bomb tests are to take the Ministry of Defence (MoD) to the European Court of Human Rights, accusing it of exposing them to radiation.
Over 1,000 victims of UK’s nuclear tests, which were carried out in the South Pacific in the 1950s, will ask Europe to intervene, as the British premier David Cameron ignores the terms of the Military Covenant and courts ban hearings into their cases.
Servicemen, who were ordered to witness nuclear bomb tests in the South Pacific, have since suffered cancers and rare medical conditions, with their children suffering from leukemia and birth defects.
Describing the news as “brilliant,” widow Shirley Denson, whose RAF ace husband was ordered to fly through mushroom clouds at Christmas Island in 1958, said, “This is one of our final chances to appeal for the right to present our case.”
“We have tried for 30 years to be heard, and every time the MoD has denied there is anything wrong with us. Now we have vital scientific evidence, and they say we have left it too late,” she added.
Earlier on May, Britain’s former Prime Minister Gordon Brown also criticized the MoD for trying to evade its responsibility for cleaning up the radioactive waste contamination from old military bases and factories.
According to a survey conducted by the Department of Energy and Climate Change (Decc), the number of contaminated sites across England and Wales was far higher than previously estimated.
London has once more humiliated itself before Tel Aviv repeating “all options [are] on the table” for Iran after withdrawing support for any military action by the Israeli regime against the country.
“We both recognise the seriousness of the threat posed by the Iranian nuclear programme,” British Foreign Secretary William Hague said after a meeting with Israeli Deputy Prime Minister Meridor in London.
He added Britain is continuing its policy of “pressure” against Iran “while keeping all options on the table.”
Hague also welcomed the “excellent progress on trade between Britain and Israel” as well as their “growing co-operation in the high-technology sector, as reflected in the launch this week of the UK-Israel Technology Council.”
His remarks are almost diametrically opposed to British Prime Minister David Cameron’s comments last week that there is no justification for an Israeli strike on Iran.
“I don’t think as we stand today that military action by Israel would be justified,” British Prime Minister David Cameron told NBC news network on Thursday.
“I don’t think the Israelis should take that action now. We told them they shouldn’t and said we wouldn’t support it if they did. We’ve been very clear,” he added.
Indeed a paradox emerges as London officials have been saying over the past few days that they are very “clear” that they “would not support” a military strike on Iran, however, they will not at the same time rule out a military strike on the country.
Yet with Cameron directly dismissing an attack as a choice, Hague’s remarks appear as an attempt to muzzle London’s Zionist friends, as it has been common British practice over the past years.
Just on the day Cameron made the remarks in Washington, Britain agreed to a plan to strengthen cooperation across a range of technological sectors with the Israeli regime at the first UK Israel Tech Council, held in London.
The move was reminiscent of the row over Israeli spy agency Mossad’s forging British passports, which were used by an Israeli hit squad to assassinate a Hamas leader in Dubai.
It was two years ago on March 23, 2010 when The Guardian reported London had expelled a senior Mossad official at Tel Aviv’s embassy in London over the issue.
Less than two months after the passports dispute, representatives from 23 British companies from the life sciences sector attended an event in the occupied territories welcomed by the then director for UK trade and investment at the British Embassy in Tel Aviv Richard Salt.
Also on May, 2010, the then thriving Liberal Democrat leader and current British Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg launched another mollification attempt in an interview with the Israeli Daily Haaretz suggesting the petty issue of passports will not affect London-Tel Aviv friendship.
“Operation Cast Lead and incidents like falsifying documents in Dubai do create tension, but … British criticism of the policy of the Israeli government should not be treated as ‘anti-Israeli,’” he said.
“I think there are issues of principles at stake, which I would like us all to have a look at calmly after the elections,” he added.
The same story of taking a step against Tel Aviv only to recompense by backing off several steps ran in the case of attempts to secure arrest warrants for Israeli officials in 2010 including the then Deputy Prime Minister Ehud Barak and opposition leader Tzipi Livni.
The appeals against Israeli officials were made based on their internationally-condemned war crimes during the same Operation Cast Lead, which Nick Clegg tried to downplay.
At the time, it was Hague himself who led the wave of appeasing attempts.
“We cannot have a position where Israeli politicians feel they cannot visit this country. The situation is unsatisfactory [and] indefensible. It is absolutely my intention to act speedily,” Hague said in June 2010.
The mentioned examples are only part of the wide picture of British servility to the Israeli regime that also includes condemnation of Israeli settlement activities and at the same time praise for mutual ties with Tel Aviv.
They also raise questions whether the hierarchy of power in Britain runs through Israeli lobbies which should be kept appeased as a hidden rule of British policy.
- Obama says when chips are down I have Israel’s back (alethonews.wordpress.com)
- Iran takes protest to UNSC over Israeli crimes (alethonews.wordpress.com)