General Antisemitism

Labour MP Yasmin Qureshi apologises for comparing Gaza to the Holocaust.


Cross posted by London based blogger Richard Millett

Well done, Tal Ofer! After I reported on Thursday that during Wednesday’s parliamentary debate on Gaza Labour MP Yasmin Qureshi had compared the situation of the Palestinians in Gaza to that of Jews living in Nazi Germany Labour Party activist Ofer immediately reported her remarks to Labour’s HQ and brought it to the attention of the media generally.

Qureshi had said:

“What has struck me in all this is that the state of Israel was founded because of what happened to the millions and millions of Jews who suffered genocide. Their properties, homes and land—everything—were taken away, and they were deprived of rights. Of course, many millions perished. It is quite strange that some of the people who are running the state of Israel seem to be quite complacent and happy to allow the same to happen in Gaza.”

You cannot get more offensive to the few remaining Holocaust survivors and to those who lost loved ones in Auschwitz, Belsen etc.

Gaza is no Belsen. And the suffering in Gaza is at the behest of Islamist-terror organisation Hamas which is happy to oppress its own people so that useful idiots in the West will blame Israel.

The response to Qureshi’s remarks from the Labour Party itself was an utter disgrace:

“These remarks were taken completely out of context. Yasmin Qureshi was not equating events in Gaza with the Holocaust. As an MP who has visited Auschwitz and has campaigned all her life against racism and anti-Semitism she would not do so.”

However, soon after, Qureshi must have had a pang of conscience and came out with this apology:

“The debate was about the plight of the Palestinian people and in no way did I mean to equate events in Gaza with the Holocaust. I apologise for any offence caused. I am also personally hurt if people thought I meant this. As someone who has visited the crematoria and gas chambers of Auschwitz I know the Holocaust was the most brutal act of genocide of the 20th Century and no-one should seek to underestimate its impact.”

So Qureshi is “personally hurt”? Poor her. Not as “personally hurt” as those who were in Auschwitz or Belsen etc or lost family there.

But let’s all feel sorry for Qureshi instead!

It is also pretty frustrating that Labour List’s Mark Ferguson thinks “Qureshi’s apology should draw a line under this, and rightly so. If there was no intention to cause offence or equate events in Gaza with the Holocaust I am happy to accept that.”

How can there have been “no intention”? Her words are 100% clear. There is no nuance!

And then what does Ferguson think of Gerald Kaufman MP’s words about Israelis?:

“Go to Tel Aviv, as I did not long ago, and watch them sitting complacently outside their pavement cafés. They do not give a damn about their fellow human beings perhaps half an hour away.”

The remainder of Qureshi’s speech was also disgraceful, especially the way she frames Jews solely by religion. She said, referring indirectly to Kaufman:

“I want to praise the people in Israel and the Jewish people in this country who campaign actively for the rights of Palestinians. Like my right hon. Friend the Member for Manchester, Gorton, I am sure that they are criticised by other Jewish people perhaps for trying to betray the state of Israel”.

But the likes of Kaufman are criticised not just by “Jewish people” but people of all religions and none. It is this division of Jews into “good Jew/bad Jew” that is almost tantamount to inciting racial hatred.

Meanwhile, these Holocaust comparisons are slowly, slowly becoming the norm.

American Professor Joel Beinin told a student audience at SOAS recently that Israel is putting the Bedouin into “concentration camps” and at a recent War On Want talk at SOAS students were told that the Palestinians are living in “apartheid ghettos”.

Thanks to the rhetoric of Beinin, Qureshi, War On Want and others Israeli Jews (and, by extension, any Jew that supports Israel) are slowly becoming thought of as Nazis.

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10 replies »

  1. It appears to be a genuine apology – except for her claim to be hurt. But of course it’s undeniable that she echoed the foul old slur, so popular among the unthinking anti-Israel and anti-Semitic crowd, that Israel is just like Nazi Germany.

    If she really did not realise that would cause offense, she must be a lot thicker than she looks.

    • Or she never been to Gaza or stidied the geo political history and current affairs of the Gaza strip, and its political representatives.

      • People who make comments like hers either know nothing about the Holocaust or nothing about Gaza or both.

  2. Half the Jewish population of Israel are 1941-67 refugees or their descendants from ten Muslim countries where they were generally abused, robbed, and expelled. Every other Israeli soldier must carry some animus and contempt for Arab miscreants.

    • Funny thing about that – I’ve spoken to a number of Jews from Arab countries and some maintain a degree of appreciation of their homeland and the people in it. I guess it has something to do with one’s roots. It’s not necessarily the case that they completely disregard them or hold them in contempt, even if they’ve been persecuted.

      The psychotherapist who tried to go back to Libya is a case in point.

      • Maybe the first generation who fled but the next generation remembers too well the bad stories rather than the good ones (generally speaking).

        Rachel Shabby is not the exception rather than the rule.

        I don’t think many Israelis will hate Arabs in general.
        The contempt begins when you serve and get abused on a daily basis.

        Abuse can go both ways.
        Sherwood only report about one way suggesting the Arab abuse of Israelis is acceptable.

  3. Yasmin Qureshi’s statement is so absurd! If anyone is complacent about the plight of Gazans, it is Hamas, the Muslim Brotherhood, and their fellow Arab/Muslim brothers. If Gazans could embrace their Jewish neighbors and brothers in peace, friendship and brotherhood without fear of retribution from Hamas, the Muslim Brotherhood, and the majority of their fellow Arab/Muslim brothers and leaders, the plight and well-being of Gazans would improve immediately and dramatically. Unfortunately, that is not the objective of Hamas, the Muslim Brotherhood, and the majority of their fellow Arab/Muslim brothers and leaders.