Gaza genocide – Sheffield protests!

21 Oct

Outside Sheffield City Hall today:


Not all the speeches were riveting, it has to be said …


Here’s what the Met say about this slogan …

One chant that has been the subject of extensive discussion is ‘Palestine will be free, from the river to the sea’. This is frequently heard at pro-Palestinian demonstrations and we are aware of the strength of feeling in relation to it. While we can envisage scenarios where these words could be unlawful, such as outside a synagogue or Jewish school, or directly at a Jewish person or group intended to intimidate, it is likely that its use in a wider protest setting, such as we anticipate this weekend, would not be an offence and would not result in arrests.


She’s singing Michael Heart’s We will not go down …

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9 Replies to “Gaza genocide – Sheffield protests!

  1. I wish I was twenty years younger, back then I would have caught a bus and been there with them
    Unfortunately I got old for my years but it is wonderful to see people taking to the streets to defend the rights of Palestinians against the apartheid murderous Israeli state.
    Have you seen the Israeli Jews defying the IDF in support of the Palestinians –

    Anti-Zionist Jewish Community Defends Palestinian Flag. Posted on October 21, 2023
    Pro-Palestinian Jews resist IDF troops who enter neighborhood to remove Palestinian flag.
    Susan 🙂

    • All I had to do was hop on a bus (free, at my time of life) into town, with little to fear from my fellow Brits. (Worst I encountered was a moron skirting the protesters and muttering “wankers” as he passed me.)

      I’m in awe of the courage shown by Israeli Jews through such deeds as the one you cite.

  2. Another site I support sent me this:

    Atalya, Refuser Solidarity Network Sun 22/10/2023 13:01
    View this email in your browser
    Dear Susan,
    My Name is Atalya, In 2017 I publicly refused to serve in the Israeli military. I did so because I felt I could not take part in the occupation of Palestine. Subsequently, I spent four months in military prison, but more importantly, I started walking a path of non-violent resistance to the Israeli occupation working together with Palestinian partners mostly in the city where I was born, Jerusalem.
    In the past six years, I devoted myself to acting in solidarity through varied means, one of them being protective presence. That means accompanying Palestinians and using my privileges as a Jewish Israeli to offer safety, both in east Jerusalem and in the occupied Palestinian territories. Mostly it included being present at home evictions or accompanying shepherds who are being threatened by settlers. This presence provides protection because police and military in Israel treat Jewish people differently, they more rarely attack us and they mostly only converse with Hebrew speakers and so we can interven, film and take photos.
    On Saturday October 7th, I was with friends at a protective presence shift in the village of At-Tuwani, in the Occupied Palestinian territories in the West Bank. While waiting for the shepherd we were supposed to accompany, one of my friends started to receive concerning messages from his family in Kibbutz Be’eri. His parents, younger siblings, grandmother, aunt, and uncle are lived in Be’eri, which was under a Hammas attack. And he immediately learned of the dangerous situation going on in the Kibbutz. In shock, he told us that armed Hamas militants entered the Kibbutz. His immediate family was locked inside their safe room, but his aunt and uncle were missing.
    It was like a nightmare in real life . We went back to the village and he started to make his way back to Jerusalem. Me and the other activists stood watch at the borders of the village, as Israeli soldiers came and started to shout. They threatened they would shoot anyone who was outside. While trying to document the situation, one soldier, with a mad look in his eyes, pushed me to the ground. Not long after, a Hamas missile dropped in the fields of a nearby village. Hearing its blaring boom, it dawned on us that here there is no safe space around. Being in At-Tuwani at that moment felt unreal.
    We did not know what to do. Should we stay and show our Palestinian partners we support them? Is it smart to risk ourselves that way? Would this help anybody? At the same time, I was thinking of my very good friend who was by himself, fearing he might lose his entire family. Should I go back home to be with him and support him? And what about my sister and her children who also live in a Kibbutz nearthe Gaza Strip?
    After a few more hours at At-Tuwani we understood there is not much more support we could offer—it was time to return to Jerusalem. The way back was scary. We heard from our friend that he spent an hour at the border. Luckily, we made it back home faster, and immediately rushed to his home to be with him for a horror-filled night. By the middle of the night, most of his family was rescued, except his uncle and aunt, who are currently still in the hands of Hamas as hostages in the Gaza strip.
    The days since have been scary and overwhelming. A week after our stay there, a Palestinian man was shot from point blank in At-Tuwani by a Jewish settler while an Israeli soldier stood by and watched. Friends were attacked by settlers in Wadi Sik, also in the West Bank, and the entire village was evicted. The horrors of war became clearer, with more and more people suffering and dying. So many people, both Israeli and Palestinian, are hurting and missing their loved ones.
    Through all this hardship it remained true for me and my friend, that what we have is each other and other war resisting activists. Being together helps us, strengthens us. Slowly we see that we do have the power to affect this reality, even by helping just one person. We started to organize again, accompanying Palestinian workers back home—so they would not be hurt—and supporting families who lost their homes. Solidarity gives hope; we can work together to bring an end to this war.
    We need your help to fund this effort, please join the struggle in solidarity to end this war, consider donating.
    In solidarity, 
    Atalya Ben-abba
    Refuser Solidarity Network
    Donate to support the Refusers

    • There are quite a few ‘refusenik’ Jews, and I appreciate and support their courageous stand against the murderous and oppressive zionist regime, but I have to ask, would not the most effective protest to be to leave the state of ‘Israel’ altogether? Surely if it is the case that a religiously based zionist state has no place in Palestine, then there are questions about the existential reasons for many Jewish immigrants to remain there without such a state, (apart of course from the Jewish population who have always lived there).

      Iif the Zionist state eventually collapses due to the diminution of the US empire, and a Palestinian government is formed sometime in the future, then I imagine that many zionist settlers would find that their zionist dream would also collapse. What would be the point for them in staying in a non-religious state?

      Probably the question would be the best solved by some sort of Palestinian/Jewish joint commission which could look at the existing situation and come to a peaceful agreement. Ideally, the two populations could co-operate to build a new integrated Palestine. This probably sounds far-fetched at the moment, but a one-state solution with equal rights for all is the only viable answer

      • This question isn’t at centre of my attention right now – I’m moving to geopolitical implications should this go regional, hence global – so I may be wide of the mark here. Perhaps others have views more considered and informed? Meanwhile and FWIW here are my top of head thoughts:

          Jewishness goes wider than Judaism. Almost all the Jews I know, and all of those I call friends, are no more Judaist than my white gentile friends are “Christian”.

          For Jews born in Israel, what’s the moral-historic argument for their leaving while North Americans and Antipodeans stay on lands from which their recent ancestors ousted indigenous peoples? (As far as I know, the ANC never proposed that all white South Africans “go home”.)

          Aren’t the specific subset of Israeli Jews referred to by Susan and me doing an immensely important job – bearing witness?

          Yes, whatever the world’s capitals are ready to say out loud at this point, all know the two-state solution is dead in the water.

  3. Meanwhile…….

    “Europe’s Largest News Aggregator Orders Editors to Play Down Palestinian Deaths

    Upday, an app owned by the German media giants Axel Springer, is instructing journalists to cover the war in Gaza with a pro-Israel bent.“

    Moving on…..

    “Starbucks is suing its union, Starbucks Workers United, after objecting to the group’s social media post in support of Palestine after the Hamas attack on Israel, according to an internal company note circulated Tuesday and obtained by The Intercept.”

    Apparently “The coffee company says the union, Starbucks Workers United, is making people think it stands in solidarity with Palestine after the Hamas attack.”

    Presumably Starbucks favours a public image which aligns itself with and supports the kind of War Crimes that resulted in people swinging from the end of a rope following the Nuremberg Trials?


    …’s a petition recently gone up highlighting the fact that a tube driver faces disciplinary action for the heinous ‘grandstanding’ crime of being in possession of human empathy.

    What Lisa Nandy (according to the latest on Skwawkbox) views as “Grandstanding.”

    Don’t you just love Cancel Culture. (Are you listening at that the back there in the ‘Remove’ all those who have spent the last decade or so trying to get anyone sacked from their job; no platformed; de-monetised; outlawed etc for not toeing your Official Narrative?)

    Not to be outdone the latest US candidate for headbanger of the month – Nicky Haley (fresh from her humiliation at last week’s UN Human Rights Council) – is not only calling for a US “Department Offense” (I thought ‘offense’ was their default state of being? Must be a spelling thing?) but also….

    “for stopping funding to colleges where its students and/or employees held pro-Palestinian rallies.”

    Still, I’m sure any day now she will actually catch up with that well known liberal icon Justin Trudeau by getting the banks to cease the bank accounts of any of those “fleas”* (copyright Lee ‘Clownworld’ Harpin of Jewish Chronicle fame).

    Don’t know about anyone else but I’ve long run out of popcorn and am seriously thinking of learning how to knit – being an old git, in the French style of around 250 years ago.

    * Perhaps some sort of prize should be on offer to the first individual or group supporting peace/the Palestinian people achieving the descriptive label of “cockroach” by someone from the increasingly deranged Western political and media classes?**

    ** We could even run a book on which politician, media outlet or what passes for a journalist is the first to bestow such a label?

  4. Once upon a time in a Galaxy far far away………….

    The postmodern emphasis on ‘narrative’; and rejection as old fashioned, quaint and uncool all talk of an external reality — independent of our thought processes but in principle accessible by empirical methods — has served, as some prescient souls warned decades ago that it would, thoroughly reactionary ends. If there’s no knowable reality, then all manner of key principles are eroded — such as the distinction between being accused of something, and being found guilty of it!

    Phil Roddis: Steel City Scribblings

    Hold onto that thought of allegations being sufficient for a guilty verdict. Because after the guilty verdict comes the punishment:

    Instead of the wholescale massacre of civilians claimed by Israel, incomplete figures published by the Hebrew newspaper Haaretz show that almost half the Israelis killed that day were in fact combatants – soldiers or police.

    In the interim, two weeks of blanket western media reporting that Hamas allegedly killed around 1,400 Israeli civilians during its 7 October military attack has served to inflame emotions and create the climate for Israel’s unconstrained destruction of the Gaza Strip and its civilian population.

    Accounts of the Israeli death toll have been filtered and shaped to suggest that a wholesale civilian massacre occurred that day, with babies, children, and women the main targets of a terror attack…..

    ……Yasmin Porat, a survivor from Kibbutz Be’eri, said in an interview for an Israeli radio-show, hosted by state-broadcaster Kan, that Israeli forces “eliminated everyone, including the hostages,” going on to state that “there was very, very heavy crossfire” and even noted tank shelling…..

    …..Increasingly, and to the horror of some Israeli officials and news outlets, Israeli eyewitnesses and survivors of the bloodshed are testifying that they were treated well by Palestinian fighters. On 24 October, Israeli state broadcaster Kan bemoaned the fact that prisoner Yocheved Lifshitz, released by Hamas the day before, was allowed to make statements live on air….

    ….It is essential to recognize that in many reports by western journalists on the ground, the majority of information regarding the actions of Hamas fighters comes from the Israeli army – an active participant in the conflict.

    Emerging evidence now indicates that there is a high probability, especially due to the scale of the infrastructural damage, that Israeli military forces could have deliberately killed captives, fired on incorrect targets, or mistaken Israelis for Palestinians in their firefights. If the only source of information for a serious claim made is the Israeli army, then it has to be taken into account that they have reason to conceal cases of friendly fire.

    Israeli friendly fire was rampant, even in the days that followed, from an army with very little actual combat experience. In the city of Ashkelon (Askalan) on 8 October, Israeli soldiers shot dead and shouted insults at the body of a man they believed to have been a Hamas fighter, yet later realized they had executed a fellow Israeli. This is just one of three such examples of friendly fire in one day, resulting in the killing of Israelis by their own troops.


    The above link is not the only source which provides chilling information that the allegations made by the Israeli State and its Western Political and Media backers (ie useful idiots) which have been taken at face value and used to inflict the punishment of that guilty verdict – made on the basis of no testing of the evidence.

    There has over the past week emerged a growing amount of evidence that the initial allegations which the Western Political and media classes have sanctified as Holy Gospel do not stand scrutiny.

    But its too late now. The lynch mob has already been rampaging for eighteen days with no sign of being satiated.

    There has been no attempt by the sanctimonious Western Political, Media and so called professional class over the past eighteen days to verify with objective and substantive evidence the claims made by the Fascist Apartheid Regime in Israel.

    Everything is taken at face value and green lights are given to respond with a war crime on the basis of an allegation being equal to an automatic guilty verdict with the punishment in this case being genocide.

    ‘allegations being equal to and automatic guilty verdict”.

    Where have we seen, heard and experienced that approach before?

    Ah yes! Starmer’s ‘we don’t do due process’ Labour Party which seeks to emulate that of the Oligarchical State he and his fellow moral midgets serve. Where Fascist Zionists expel non Zionist members of their own community for the crime of not accepting Fascism as their guiding principle on the dubious and bullshit charge of “antisemitism” – which is now the go to charge thrown at any one who opposes the Fascism of Zionism.

    An entire people are being condemned to extinction on the basis of untested and unverified allegations made by those seeking to erase them from history because the West no longer does due process – if it ever did.

    Thinking about these cheerleaders across the West, barking for Genocide and the Fascism from which it springs, I’m reminded of something my old granny used to say occasionally. Something about a particular punishment ‘being too good for them.’

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