LDN didn’t print my letter last week, but the letters they did publish went some way to redress the “Davies love fest” of the week before.
For the record though, I thought I’d publish what I wrote here:
Since you published Chris Davies’ self-righteous non-apology last week and apparently received many other letters supporting him, allow me to add a note of dissent.
In the article that got Davies in such hot water, he states: “I visited Auschwitz last year, and it is very difficult to understand why those whose history is one of such terrible oppression appear not to care that they have themselves become oppressors.” To draw parallels between the extermination of 5 million Jews and the Palestinian situation, let alone to imply that the Holocaust contains a moral instruction that Jews should heed, Israeli or not, is grotesquely offensive. Would you hector a rape victim about the need for them to learn their lesson?
Referring to the situation in Palestine as “apartheid” is fatuous in the extreme. Anyone who advocates a two-state solution – including Israel, Palestine and the Quartet – is advocating what could be simplistically described as an “apartheid” solution, partition wall or not. And let’s not forget that 19% of Israelis are Arabs who have citizenship and voting rights.
The use of such inflammatory language on such a complex issue always causes more heat than light. It means that an opportunity to highlight the very real plight of the Palestinians at the hands of the Israeli government is lost.
Initially, I assumed that Chris Davies was simply being uncharacteristically naive. I’m no longer so sure. Is it really too much to expect our politicians to use responsible language?