I have published my first op ed in Ha’aretz. The title is theirs not mine. It’s online here, the opening below.
Opinion Why Are U.K. Progressives Still Celebrating a Grotesque anti-Semite and Holocaust Denier?
When a publicly-funded community center hosted the Jew-hating Gilad Atzmon, it blocked anti-racists on Twitter who challenged the decision. For many on the U.K. left, the denial of anti-Semitism has become a reflex
Ben Gidley Oct 30, 2017 10:30 AM
Last weekend, the small English city of Reading (population 156,000; Jewish population 355) was the site of a book promotion event by Israeli-born jazz musician and longtime anti-Semite Gilad Atzmon. After the venue ignored complaints from the local rabbi and local councillors, the event was protested by Reading Labour councillors and members of Reading’s Jewish congregation.
The protestors pointed out that Atzmon is a well-documented Holocaust denier and racist. The Community Security Trust (which monitors threats to the U.K.’s Jews) described his previous book as “quite probably the most anti-Semitic book published in this country in recent years.” That book argued that Jewishness (and not Zionism) is pernicious and that Hitler will be vindicated by history.
At an event at Exeter University, Atzmon was reported as saying “Hitler was right” and “anti-Semitism doesn’t exist.” On his blog and Twitter account, Atzmon recently blamed West London’s tragic Grenfell Tower fire on the Jews; his tweet was headed with the neo-Nazi catchphrase, “The Goyim Know”. In an interview this summer, he declared “the music industry is largely an extended Jewish syndicate.”