March 6, 2024

Events in the UK just seem to happen organically with no apparent concern from the government. Anti-Israel demonstrations are now a weekly occurrence, with crowds varying from 50,000 to 200,000+ (estimates provided by various sources: select your own figure). The police are reluctant to arrest anyone chanting Jihadi, death to Israel or carrying patently antisemitic placards. The police say that they are watching, recording and arresting later as they don’t want to inflame delicate public order situations. Yet we had a single keyboard player singing Christian songs in Oxford Street, London, being told by police that it was against the law and against church rules and that if she didn’t cease she would be arrested. Of course, it isn’t against the law and of course she doesn’t need the permission of the church to sing Christian songs in public. That would just destroy the good old British tradition of door-to-door carol singers at Christmas!

The police officer concerned was apparently spoken to and given words of advice. Well, I can think of a few words of advice of my own. Returning to the large-scale demonstrations, there have been fewer arrests and even the cases coming to court have been met with minimal punishment.

The judge who decided to let three women wearing paragliding images at a pro-Palestine march walk free has admitted to liking a social media post branding Israel a ‘terrorist’ state. Tanweer Ikram is facing calls to be investigated for a conflict of interest after he liked a LinkedIn post calling for a “free Palestine” by a barrister who had previously promoted conspiracy theories claiming that Israel allowed the 7 October attack.

Judge Tanweer Ikram. Source: LinkedIn

Heba Alhayek, 29, Pauline Ankunda, 26, and Noimutu Olayinka Taiwo, 27, were found guilty on Tuesday of an offence under the Terrorism Act after displaying images of paragliders at a protest in central London.

But they were handed 12-month conditional discharges at Westminster Magistrates’ Court, after Deputy Senior District Judge Ikram said he had “decided not to punish” them.

The post which was liked by Ikram stated: “Free Free Palestine. To the Israeli terrorist both in the United Kingdom, the United States, and of course Israel you can run, you can bomb but you cannot hide – justice will be coming for you.”

Ikram had liked a post written by barrister Sham Uddin, who is standing to be an independent MP in east London. (East London has a huge Bengali population and has been the subject of corruption investigations into local politicians, one of whom was banned from office for 5 years).

Uddin has made a series of anti-Israel posts, including an October 7 conspiracy theory that Israel knowingly allowed the attacks to take place to “expel” Palestinians.

Mark Summers KC, representing Alhayek and Ankunda in court, said police had “mistaken” what they saw and were fed a narrative by partisan social media groups.

He said they were actually displaying a “cartoon parachute” used as a “symbol of peace”.

In his verdict, Judge Ikram said there was nothing to suggest the group were Hamas supporters.

Jewish News, February 14, 2024.

I wonder what action would have been taken if a Jewish demonstrator had been observed chanting ‘From the river to the Med, Hamas will soon be dead.’ Of course, they would have been arrested. It is easier to control and take action against a few demonstrators than it is to arrest people in a crowd of 200,000.

This brings me to the Rochdale by-election from last week. It was held by Labour and they put up a candidate (Azhar Ali) that two weeks before the election was discovered uttering antisemitic comments at a Labour meeting. This was publicised and he was dropped as a Labour candidate but stood as an independent. He gained eight per cent of the vote.

In short, the seat was won by George Galloway, a well-known maverick politician who has been an MP before, mostly outside the mainstream parties, but is renowned for being anti-Israel, pro militant Muslim groups. He now leads the Workers’ Party of Britain. Galloway romped home with 40 per cent of the vote, with second place going to a local (white) businessman well known as a local philanthropist, He got 21 per cent of the vote, being more than twice the combined votes placed for the Liberal and Conservative candidates.

I forgot to mention that Rochdale is 30 per cent Asian (mostly of Pakistani ancestry) and is the home of the famous Rochdale grooming gangs and sex trafficking operatives.

George Galloway MP.

George Galloway MP.

Galloway was sworn in as an MP on Monday, following his by-election win last week.

Speaking to reporters afterwards, he listed more areas with large Muslim populations and vowed to “win or make sure that Keir Starmer doesn’t win”.

He named the Labour deputy leader’s seat (Angela Rayner) as a target, saying: “There’s at least 15,000 supporters of my point of view in her constituency.”

Mr Galloway was expelled from the Labour party in 2003 over his views on the Iraq war and said his Rochdale win was “for Gaza”. His campaign material even included the Palestinian flag, and branded Labour “pro-Israel”, adding that the two main parties were “two cheeks of the same backside”.

BBC/Sky News

Galloway with the leader of Hamas, Ismail Haniyeh, in 2009, Source: Reuters.

Galloway has the avowed intent to mobilise the Muslim voters and cause much electoral damage to the Labour party in the forthcoming general election in seats with a high percentage of Muslims of voting age. It is this potential weaponising of the Muslim vote that is now causing concern amongst the great and good of British politics.

Since the election, stories of intimidation and death threats against candidates have been made, allegations of fraud in the postal ballots have surfaced and the Conservative chair has suggested that there may be a need for a police presence at polling stations in future.

A number of sources have expressed concern about a possible mobilisation of Muslim voters in seats where they have a high presence, not just led by The Workers’ Party but with others jumping on the bandwagon.

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said he was “very concerned” at reports of intimidation during what he labelled “one of the most divisive campaigns we’ve seen in recent times”.

Sir Keir Starmer should be worried because if a high proportion of seats fall in this way, Labour would be the losers and it has been suggested that he may need the support of the Scottish Nationalists to oust the Conservative Party in the next elections.

It has all the signs of a Balkanisation of British politics and I worry about the future of the UK. I have spent enough time on post-doctoral work at a major conflict-research centre to see the early signs of problems in the UK, with the white (and oddly enough many of the Black population) feeling threatened by this and slowly and gradually resorting to violence. However, if Sunak had half a political brain, he could see this as an opportunity to give him an outside chance of recovering some dignity and political influence before the next election. The majority of the country are sick of all the demonstrations and lack of action by the police and the courts and are crying out for strong political action and leadership, none of which is possessed by Rishi Sunak.

Brought up in a far-left coal mining community and came to NZ when the opportunity arose. Made a career working for blue-chip companies both here and overseas. Developed a later career working on business...