106

Fiasco In Islington

Part 2 is available here

Richard Hugus

Gilad Atzmon

Jazz saxophonist and writer Gilad Atzmon was recently banned from playing at an assembly hall in Islington, a borough of London, by order of the Islington Town Council. This came about as a result of an e-mail from one person – Martin Rankoff – saying nothing more than that if Atzmon was going to be at the venue on December 21 he would give a ticket that was given to him to someone else.

Rankoff wrote, “Mr Atzmon’s news and beliefs I personally find repulsive and do not wish to be in the same place as him, let alone listen to his music.” Rankoff included links to ADL and Israeli news outlets accusing Atzmon of antisemitism. Incredibly, on the basis of this letter alone, the Islington Council went way out of its way and contacted the show’s promoter to get Atzmon banned—something Rankoff didn’t even ask for.

Imagine the situation in reverse: Gilad Atzmon writes a letter to the Council saying he is uncomfortable with Martin Rankoff appearing in the audience at Islington assembly hall. He refers to Mr. Rankoff’s pro-Israel Twitter page where Rankoff calls Jeremy Corbyn “A F***ing Antisemite and Racist” and where Corbyn is pictured on a bike with a comment suggesting Corbyn should be rammed by a car. Atzmon says that he doesn’t feel safe with Rankoff in the audience. He finds Mr. Rankoff’s support for Israel repulsive because Israel was founded on genocide against the people of Palestine. As proof he provides links to news reports on the slaughter of unarmed protestors in Gaza since March 30, 2018, and a story on the Deir Yassin massacre of 1948.

This imaginary second complaint would have been scorned as an abridgement of Rankoff’s rights. Indeed, since the Islington Council has adopted the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance definition of antisemitism, in which criticism of Israel is deemed antisemitic, the Council would probably feel obliged to forward the letter to the authorities as evidence of hate speech.

The Council provided a statement on the banning in which it says: “under the Equality Act 2010, the Council must, in the exercise of its functions, have due regard to the need to foster good relations between different races and religions within the borough. The Council took account of the fact that Mr Atzmon’s presence at the Hall, and knowledge of his presence among residents of the borough, might harm such relationships, as well as the Council’s duty to tackle prejudice and promote understanding within the borough.”

This begs the question — in what way would either the “presence” of Gilad Atzmon or “knowledge of his presence among residents” harm the relationship between different races and religions in the borough? Atzmon was to appear at the venue as a saxophone player in a jazz group. It’s hard to imagine a more severe inversion of the concept of discrimination. On the basis of the feelings of one complainant, the right of a musician to work or even be present in Islington is taken away.

What lies behind this is a familiar tactic. Zionists have no argument to counter critics of Israel, so they try to shut them up by attacking their character and robbing them of their livelihood. Now AIPAC and other lobbies are working to make it illegal to criticize Israel, as we see in the recent case of a Texas speech therapist whose yearly contract was denied because she refused to sign a pledge not to support a boycott of Israel. One might ask, what does a teaching position in Pflugerville, Texas have to do with one’s opinions about a country seven thousand miles away? And why does that country have the right to compel anyone in the US to sign a loyalty oath?

If the BDS movement doesn’t do it, zealotry and fanatacism will be the undoing of the Zionist project. People don’t like being told what they are allowed to think and say. When our words and thoughts are policed, it makes us question all the more. What were once decent leftist positions against racism and discrimination have been twisted into a new kind of totalitarianism, one in which it is racist to question the racist, and discriminatory to question discrimination; one in which we are told to think something doesn’t exist when we can see with our own eyes that it does. The self-righteous members of the Islington Town Council have set a very dangerous precedent, and have been used as fools on top of it.


avatar
  Subscribe  
newest oldest most voted
Notify of
UreKismet
Reader
UreKismet

Judging by the tenor of this thread I believe that most of the commenters have become confused due to an understandable if somewhat ‘olde worlde’ error. Many are het up at a council which appears to have resiled from its duties to collect the rubbish, maintain the roads and resource libraries and instead this posse of alderpersons prefers to make pointless and obviously facile (since a small local government authority lacks the where ithall to enforce announcements concerning distant foreign lands) tilts at crooked windmills. I’m afraid this issue is down to a total misunderstanding by citizens of the contemporary… Read more »

willi uebelherr
Reader
willi uebelherr

Dear friends, please excuse my bad english. Semits don’t exist. Only the family of semitic languages. Most important arabic. This means, the term Pro-Semit or Anti-Semit is nonsense. Zionism. Mainly organised from Moses Hess, a friend of Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels. But his concept was to disolve the specific “choosen people”. Theodor Herzl and Zeev Jabotinski used it in the european dark-night of nationalism. And we see it with Cecil Rodes and Winston Churchill. Jewish people. Only, if the follow the strict regulation of the Thora. People, they follow the jewish religion and use it every day. Jewish as… Read more »

rtj1211
Reader
rtj1211

Requirement for all Jews living in the UK to sign to remain as citizens: 1) The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Noerthern Ireland will be, as of 1st April 2019, once again be a sovereign nation. 2) It has never been, is not currently, nor will it ever be subservient to the State of Israel. 3) Jews as a people are no less likely to offend others than any other grouping in the UK and as such have no dispensation from the right of others to criticise them in robust but respectful ways. 4) Actions of the State of… Read more »

Antonym
Reader
Antonym

Better start with male Pakistani-UK passport holders; plenty more of those around including some “explosive” characters!! All islamists believe they are superior, first above their own women, children and animals and next above there rest of the planet. Their main interest is life after death, with the 72 virgins (or white grapes) – the here and now is disposable.

mark
Reader
mark

And the main interests of the Zionist Apartheid Regime are genocide, terrorism, extortion, defamation, corruption, influence peddling, drug pushing, sex trafficking, and organ trafficking.

Einstein
Reader
Einstein

Like the shocking story of the British taxpayer funding the organ-trafficking of eighteen thousand children, this event concerning Jeremy Corbyn’s own council has been met with deafening silence by the mainstream media.
Why?

mark
Reader
mark

Who do you think owns the MSM, lock, stock and barrel?
Gypsies? Jehovah’s Witnesses?

Harry Law
Reader
Harry Law

Imagine if the UK had in its statutes, and the USA had in its constitution measures to ensure only white people had the right to immigration [one of Israel’s basic laws [1950] is only Jews have the right to immigration into Israel]. Continuing the analogy with Israel’s recently passed ‘Nation-State’ [basic law]. Also last week the Knesset rejected an Equal Rights Bill – Jewish MKs vote by 71-25 to reject equality between Jews and non-Jews. 1. “The states of the UK and the USA are the nation-states of the ‘white people”. 2. “The actualization of the right of national self-… Read more »

John
Reader

I am sick to the back teeth about Jews. Can’t stand them

Jay-Q
Reader
Jay-Q

Keep prejudiced, narrow-minded and discriminatory statements like that to yourself.

Jay-Q
Reader
Jay-Q

Well, I am out of here. I can’t be part of a forum where people are able to make anti-Semitic statements and then get ‘thumbed down’ when trying to confront it. Shame.

mark
Reader
mark

What people like you can’t understand is that when you DO bad things, people SAY bad things about you.

Sarah Jannsen
Reader
Sarah Jannsen

You’re basically defending anti-Semitism, then?

mark
Reader
mark

No, I’m defending humanity against genocide, terror, corruption, defamation, extortion, lies and all forms of criminality associated with sub human Zionist filth.

milosevic
Reader
milosevic

I think you’re confusing the Ubermenschen with the Untermenschen. According to the current scheme of things, it’s the dirty goyim who are the subhumans.

Chris
Reader
Chris

From my experience being a critic of Israel’s genocidal criminal behaviour makes you an anti-Semite, so could you tell us exactly what is it that one should not be ‘anti’ about when it comes to Semitism?

milosevic
Reader
milosevic

Obviously, but for some reason unmentionably, one’s attitude to anti-Semitism depends entirely on one’s understanding of the nature of the Semitism that it is opposed to. Traditionally, one is pathologized as an anti-Semite as soon as one begins to investigate the various symptoms and manifestations of Semitism, about which it is impermissible to know anything in detail. However, there are increasing indications that this defence system is starting to break down; the shrieks of “anti-Semite!!!” grow louder and more hysterical, as less and less attention is paid to them. Clearly, this is a self-reenforcing process; the natural outcome of anti-Semitism… Read more »

Squeeth (@squeeth)
Reader

There’s a world of difference between Jews and zionists; best not to confuse them.

Badger Down
Reader
Badger Down

Not all Jews are zionist. But since most Jews support the illegal occupation of Palestine, every Jew must be suspected of being zionist.

Husq
Reader
Husq

>There’s a world of difference between Jews and zionists; best not to confuse them.<

The "Jews" are as confused by their identity as much as they cause confusion.

Badger Down
Reader
Badger Down

No excuse. You can be a bacon, lettuce, and tomato sandwich, but if you support “israel” in Palestine, you are criminal.

milosevic
Reader
milosevic

I keep hearing that “anti-zionism is the same thing as anti-semitism”. The tiny minority of self-identified Jews who are willing to contradict this claim, could be described as the exception that proves the rule. Apparently, the world of difference between Jews and Zionists is not at all apparent to the large majority of those who inhabit these largely overlapping categories, who are exceedingly eager that they should be confused, at all times, by everybody.

Why is that?

Francis Lee
Reader
Francis Lee

Yes, I wonder what the reaction of Islington Council would be if those talentless, self-publicising sluts of Pussy Riot applied to do a gig at Islington Town Hall? Of course, the Councillors would be falling over themselves, knocking over their lattes to oblige. Tickets advertising the gig would be available in the Gruan. There is an information/cultural war going on and the Labour party has been targeted for infiltration and has been infiltrated. I recently read an article in a Labour party sympathising publication which consisted on nothing other than the usual Russophobic bile. The author, a senior member of… Read more »

Harry Law
Reader
Harry Law

The Labour party capitulation to the Israel lobby has been painful to watch, Len McCluskey [Unite Union] hoped that the party could keep the attacks on Corbyn at bay by agreeing to all the examples in the IHRA [working definition of Antisemiism] at the NEC, more fool McCluskey. Israel is clearly a racist state, from its Jews only immigration policy [basic law 1950] plus 65 laws which discriminate against Palestinians https://www.adalah.org/en/content/view/7771 up to the recent and blatantly racist Nation state law, also within the last week By 71 votes to 38 the Knesset rejects Equal Rights Bill – Jewish MKs… Read more »

mark
Reader
mark

You can never appease these people. Fight 5 wars for Israel and you are anti semitic because you haven’t fought 10 wars for Israel. Give Israel $50 billion and you are anti semitic because you haven’t given it $100 billion. Jesus Christ himself couldn’t please these people when he walked the earth 2,000 years ago, so what chance has anybody else got?

Squeeth (@squeeth)
Reader

McClusky tried to appease zionist antisemites? Gutless bastard. he and that spineless whelp Corbyn should ban zionists for the same reason that racists and fascists are banned. Reformist boobies.

milosevic
Reader
milosevic

I am beginning to think the Labour party is not fit for purpose.

Tony bLiar’s regime didn’t succeed in convincing you?

Of course, if you assume that the purpose is serving the needs of the neoliberal ruling class, then they are extremely adept at it.

a craven, spineless, lick-spittle

Aren’t those the primary qualifications for advancement in the Slave Labour Party?

Joerg
Reader
Joerg

The power of the Zionist lobby relies on its power in the USA. And there it is so powerful there, because the American Joe Six Pack and other large parts of the US society (Trump to me is also a Joe Six Pack, only a rich one) think, that (nowadays!) Israelis are “God’s people”. And it is exactly this what makes those disgusting, mass murderous, cruel, illegal (to international, but possibly also to Israeli law) attacks of Israel possible. And to change this Joe Six Pack should take those false “Judaic” pastors in the US to responsibility. Because for REAL… Read more »

Wazdo
Reader
Wazdo

In 1935, my gradparents, seeing which way the political wind was blowing, sent their only child from Manhiem in Germany to England. She made two visits back, (brave or what!) until she lost contact with them in late 1938. During the war she joined the British Army to fight the Nazis and it was in Catterick Yorkshire that she met our father. They married in 1946, after he had served in Palastine and they remained married until his death in 2009. She asked that her remains lie next to her husband’s in the Jewish cemetary but the local synagogue refused… Read more »

milosevic
Reader
milosevic

I have been a manual labourer all my life and wouldn’t know a Rothschild if I fell over one. Consider whether “Jewish” isn’t, more than anything else, a political category. That would certainly explain why the large majority of people who identify as such, believe that zionism is part of the package. If your political sympathies differ greatly from theirs, then maybe you aren’t actually “Jewish”, in the same sense that they are. am I an Anti-Semite/Self Hating Jew? You might be interested to read Gilad Atzmon’s book, The Wandering Who?, if you haven’t already. Being an ex-Jew seems like… Read more »

DavidKNZ
Reader
DavidKNZ

For a wider context, see the “forbidden” documentary from “Al Jazzera”
https://www.aljazeera.com/investigations/thelobby/
which details the aims, methods and lack of scruples of the Israeli lobby in UK

Jay-Q
Reader
Jay-Q

Considering that the BBC is financed by licence payers to the tune of over £3bn a year this should be shown on TV, but it won’t and never will.

Jay-Q
Reader
Jay-Q

Not one word in the rag Guardian about Israel attacking Syria on Christmas day.

John
Reader

Oy vey they have been shut down from any Criticism of the “chosen tribe”

ZigZag Wanderer
Reader
ZigZag Wanderer

Professional hit by Martin Rankoff & the Sussex Friends of Israel. Council bought and paid for.

I visited Martins YouTube channel hoping to learn about his passion for Jazz.

63 videos .. no jazz .. all zionism. https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLD6zZseLGxoaV_406Yd_Vw/videos?disable_polymer=1

harry stotle
Reader
harry stotle

I’m sure it was just coincidence Rankoff bought tickets for this particular artist without researching his political affiliations?

In such orchestrated, sorry, I meant accidental circumstances, the only logical thing was to involve the council leader not to mention the finest lawyers the public purse can stretch to.

Islington may not be able to house vulnerable families but there will always money available for vexacious complaints especially when there is a slight risk the views being expressed are not in line with those approved by Margaret Hodge or other intolerant activists.

harry stotle
Reader
harry stotle

Just to add the council leader and his lawyers have pissed off the Blockheads as well – the band seem rather dubious about Rankoff purporting to be an ‘avid’ fan (bearing in mind Gilad has played 100s of gigs with the Blockheads including 2 previous shows at Islington Assembly Hall).
https://www.gilad.co.uk/writings/2018/12/19/the-blockheads-are-outraged-at-the-ruling-by-islington-council

Maybe the punk loving Rankoff didn’t notice Gilad before, or maybe he has only been an avid fan during the period it takes to satisfy Margaret Hodge’s crazed demand for a Labour party bereft of actual socialists or internationalists?

willi uebelherr
Reader
willi uebelherr

Dear friends, what is off-gurdian?
If you wnat to inform to Gilad Atzmon, then you have tu use hist writings blogs.

A Christmas Miracle in Islington
Gilad Atzmon, 24.12.2018
https://www.gilad.co.uk/writings/2018/12/24/a-christmas-miracle-in-islington

An open Christmas Greeting to a few Labour Politicians
Gilad Atzmon, 25.12.2018
https://www.gilad.co.uk/writings/2018/12/24/a-christmas-miracle-in-islington

“Sax Discrimination” …A Christmas Miracle In Islington, UK
24.12.2018
https://stgeorgewest.blogspot.com/2018/12/sax-discrimination-christmas-miracle-in.html

Santa Claus has played the Sax. And the people there was very happy. Not you.from Off-Guardin, and not the Labor mafia.

Con
Reader
Con

???

Gary Weglarz
Reader
Gary Weglarz

Sad to see that this nonsense is taking place on both sides of the Atlantic. I’ll save the government and all their ancillary thought control groups the trouble and just admit outright that I did have a – “pro-Palestinian thought” – today! I admit it, I’m sorry, I’ll do my best to keep my thinking within acceptable bounds in the future. I don’t know what comes over me, but sometimes out of nowhere I just find myself thinking that – “Palestinians are human beings too” – and I can’t seem to totally shake it no matter how much MSM I… Read more »

milosevic
Reader
milosevic

any of the other surrealist fairy tales we hold so dear

— since The Day When Surreal Faery Tales Came True.

Robert Laine
Reader

I’m shocked by your revelation, Gary, but thanks for sharing. The nonsense may be mitigated here now that the student body at the U. of Chile has signed up to BDS, and the fact that we have the largest Palestinian population outside the Middle East.
https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2018/05/chile-giving-citizenship-palestinian-refugees-180515114630102.html

Julio Bigtime
Reader
Julio Bigtime

To Islington Council Dec 20, 2018 — “Your decision to dis-allow Gilad Atzmon’s attendance/performance with the Blockheads is wrong. You have unwittingly been tricked by Zionists. You should change your minds. Do the right thing…. Say NO to Zionism.”

From Islington Council, Complaints Assistant, Customer Service Division Dec 21, 2018 — “Thank you for your online form.
We acknowledge receipt of your complaint. Please see the Council’s statement on this matter which can be found here: https://www.islington.media/news/statement-gilad-atzmon
Kind Regards, …”

Devon
Reader
Devon

Here are nearly 5000 signatures telling Islington Council what an abomination was their decision to ban Gilad Atzmon. Which community, exactly, is Islington Council working for?
https://www.change.org/p/devon-nola-gmail-com-hands-off-gilad-atzmon?recruiter=3196660&utm_source=share_petition&utm_medium=copylink&utm_campaign=share_petition&fbclid=IwAR2eVj1QK0gPPTJDr31_sXxDgEE9oVta22OWM4PF-HDrFmg1CHNb5EF4Y2w

Devon
Reader
Devon

The big story here is that this saga started with a request from Likud-UK Director, Martin Rankoff and when things got complicated, the compromised Council not only hired London’s most expensive law firm, it turns out they also represented the notorious Likudnik, Sheldon Adelson. Isn’t this too many Likud connections for one Progressive Labour Council?

John
Reader

If there is something bad happening anywhere in the world four countries and two peoples will be up to there necks in it; America, Britain, Israel and the Saudis and the people’s are so called Anglo Saxons and Jews

vexarb
Reader

Accordingto Francis Lee below, that “Progressive Labour” council is packed with the remnants of “New Labour”. Israel Firsters — or rather, Rothschild Firsters, like TB.Liar himself the cynical Middle East Peace Envoy who held jobs in 3 different Rothschild companies.

Robert Laine
Reader

Thank you for an excellent article about free speech and the danger of smear campaigns. I notice with interest that in 2011 the Guardian was helpful in giving us the truth by providing a platform to Andy Newman to warn us about Mr. Atzmon and antisemitism in the Labor Party and on the left.
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2011/sep/25/gilad-atzmon-antisemitism-the-left

Nicolas Maroudas
Reader
Nicolas Maroudas

Significant date, 2011. Launch of NATZO’s ruthless ISIS terrorists in attempt to implement Zionazi Oded Yinon plan to dismember Syria and hand over its hydrocarbon resources to Rothschild companies such as Genie Energy (shareholders include notorious Anglo Zio Caitalists such as Rothschild, Cheney, Murdoch et al).

ADKC
Reader
ADKC

“Atzmon was born in a secular Jewish family in Tel Aviv, Israel, Ashkenazi on his father’s side, and grew up in Jerusalem. His great-grandmother was a victim of World War II, but he refuses to assign her death a special Holocaust status. His grandfather was, he states, a commander in the paramilitary Irgun during the period of the British Mandate in Palestine, who subscribed to the doctrines of Ze’ev Jabotinsky, hated Germans, despised the British, was angry with Palestinians for living on land that God had given to Jews, and loathed Jewish leftists. For Atzmon he was a ‘veteran Zionist… Read more »

John
Reader

But but but but **looks round desperately for some kind of evidence, STRUGGLES** erm UNTEH SHUMURTISM