February 21, 2019
Our director, Hannah Weisfeld, wrote to the Jewish News about the new right-wing merge in Israel and explained why all of those that consider themselves friends of Israel must not conflate support for the country with support for the outright racism, homophobia and anti-democratic beliefs of the Jewish supremacists’ party – Otzma Yehudit.
Every society has marginal, radical, violent groups like Otzma Yehudit, who follow racist and anti-democratic ideologies. As long as the mainstream considers these groups illegitimate, the rest of society is kept safe from them. History teaches us that the point in which such groups and ideologies become a threat to society is when the mainstream gives these groups a Kosher stamp. That moment happened yesterday in Israel.
The leaders of this newly merged faction represent values that are inimical to anyone that considers themselves to be a believer in democracy, justice and basic human rights. And if they become the lawmakers that prop up the next Israeli government, it will be incumbent on all of those that consider themselves friends of Israel – whether that is the British government, establishment Jewish community organisations, or individuals that are committed to Israel’s safety and well-being, as the vast majority of the Jewish community in the UK is, to publicly dis-associate themselves from this government and condemn its leadership. Because if we do not, it is friends of Israel that will be conflating support for Israel with support for outright racism, homophobia and anti-democratic beliefs.