March 04, 2005

Livingstone & Israel

Letter to the Guardian Newspaper

Sir: If Ken Livingstone spent as much time dealing with London’s traffic problems as he does on demonising Israel, he would make motorists a lot happier. But Ken doesn’t know how to drive. He doesn’t have a licence. Ken knows even less about Israel, and his job as London mayor gives him no licence to criticise foreign leaders; be it Bush or Sharon.

In recalling the Kahan Commission on Sabra and Shatila, the mayor will know perfectly well that the killings were carried out by Arabs, not Jews. He complains that three times more Palestinians than Jews have been killed in the present conflict. As a devotee of statistics Mr Livingstone should also have noted that the death toll amongst Jewish women and children was far higher than amongst Palestinians. Perhaps that is because Jews don’t bomb buses and restaurants to get attention.

Oddly enough, Ken Livingstone has a lot in common with Ariel Sharon. Both have manifestly broken their election promises. Ariel Sharon has surrendered to terror by agreeing to retreat to largely indefensible borders. Here in London, Ken Livingstone has failed to make any significant impact on London’s problems. His attempts to deflect attention to these failings range from anything from a £2 billion Olympic bid to cheap anti-Semitic remarks. The stark difference is that whilst the Mayor seems focused on self-publicity, Prime Minister Sharon is risking the security of his nation for peace.

Some have said that Israel today is the world’s Jew. Perhaps they are right. But to say “This is about Israel – not anti-Semitism” shows how much the Mayor misunderstands his Jewish ratepayers. Cut Israel and Jews bleed here in London.

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