The Israelis’ war on the leader of the Labour Party is really a war on free speech that’s meant to silence critics of Israel in the UK and elsewhere, argues As’ad AbuKhalil.
By As’ad AbuKhalil
Special to Consortium News
In the last few decades, public opinion in the West has shifted from the early, post- World War II period. Support for Israel has declined while support for the Palestinians has increased. This shift has been particularly pronounced among youth, especially those who are liberals or leftists.
The view was much different when Israel established its occupation of Palestine in 1948. But Israel has committed too many massacres and perpetrated too many invasions to maintain the status quo. Its war crimes have been televised too often for the world not to notice and popular opinion not to change. Mainstream print media no longer can control the narrative and mold the coverage of Israel and its offenses like it once did.
Still, while the base of the Socialist Party in France or the Labour Party in the United Kingdom has shifted in a more pro-Palestinian direction, much of the leadership of those parties continues to uphold Israeli dogmas. These are the same dogmas to which all ruling parties of Europe and the U.S. and its establishment media have adhered to since the occupation began.
The U.S. is a prime example. Although the Democratic base has become more sympathetic to the Palestinians (and less supportive of Israel), the leadership of the Democratic Party has not wavered in its support for military and economic aid to Israel and for its unconditional support for Israeli wars and invasions with the mantra that “Israel has a right to defend itself.” This fact remains as true with Bernie Sanders as it is does with Nancy Pelosi and Hillary Clinton.
British Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn is the exception. Unlike Francois Hollande of France, Corbyn represents the progressive, youthful base of the his party on domestic and foreign policies.
His political rise poses a real problem for Israel. Therefore Tel Aviv’s latest target is Corbyn. Israel finds his stance worrisome because if…