A British diplomat has criticized the appointment of two leading Jewish academics to the UK’s Iraq Inquiry panel, stating it may upset the balance of the inquiry.
Sir Oliver Miles, a former British ambassador to Libya, told The Independent newspaper this week that the appointment of Sir Martin Gilbert, the renowned Holocaust historian and Winston Churchill biographer, and Sir Lawrence Freedman, professor of war studies and vice-principal of King’s College London, would be seen as “ammunition” that could be used to call the inquiry a “whitewash.”
Miles said the two academics were Jewish and that Gilbert was an active Zionist. He also said they were both strong supporters of former prime minister Tony Blair and the Iraq war…
“It is a pity that, if and when the inquiry is accused of a whitewash, such handy ammunition will be available,” he added. “Membership should not only be balanced; it should be seen to be balanced.”
There you go. In regard to any issue which even tangentially touches on Israel, Jews are suspect. I recall someone saying, “when I read a letter to the editor about the Middle East, I immediately look to see if the writer has a Jewish name.” Then I presume she discounts whatever was in the letter. As I wrote yesterday in a different context,
Eloquence, logic, and appeal to facts are irrelevant today. Only the point of view [and apparently the religion/ethnicity of the speaker] matters.
The world is tired of hearing the Jews complain, just as they were tired of them before, during and immediately after WWII. I suppose Miles would prefer the panel to be made up entirely of former ambassadors to Arab countries. Then nobody could call it a ‘whitewash’.
I’ve noticed this myself recently. People who can’t respond to my arguments say that we should ‘agree to disagree’, meaning “just be quiet, of course you think the way you do, you’re Jewish.”
For some reason the fact that there are plenty of anti-Zionist Jews around — including famous ones like Noam Chomsky, Tony Judt, et al — doesn’t seem to make a difference. Jewishness only seems to affect the soundness of one’s arguments when one is pro-Israel.
Indeed, when a Jew or Jewish organization attacks Israel, the same people cheer. After all, if even Jews like Philip Weiss, Norman Finkelstein or Ilan Pappé think that Israel is an apartheid state committing genocide against the Palestinians, then it must be true.
But poor Sir Martin Gilbert just can’t help being biased!