After a period of Party conferences, something shocking occurred to me when looking back at the issues and debates.
If it wasn’t so upsetting it would be funny, as was reported about the Labour party conference:
‘A vote of Constituency Labour Party delegates on the first day of the conference showed that Palestine was deemed to be the fourth most important issue for debate alongside housing, schools and Windrush – ahead of the NHS, Brexit, social care and welfare.’
And then today I happened to be reading the Guardian online – I like to see varied opinions.
It’s quite a busy day of news, so I went to see what was being read and shared the most as of 12:30pm
Firstly, we had the royal wedding headline ‘Princess Eugenie wedding: celebrities and royal guests gather for ceremony,’ that had 440 shares.
Then there was ‘Recordings prove Jamal Khashoggi was killed, Turkish investigators claim.’ A major piece of world news and that had 633 shares.
Of course, there was an article on Brexit: ‘Brexit: May faces cabinet backlash over indefinite customs union,’ major news for UK and the world, a huge 1309 shares.
Surely that was the biggest story of the morning….er… no
‘Israel fines New Zealand women $18,000 for urging Lorde concert boycott.’ A tiny story involving Israel and New Zealand and a £12,000 fine. Who in the UK really cares about that? A grand total of 7406 shares!!!
It’s simply a story about how an Israel court has ordered two New Zealand women to pay damages for harming the artistic welfare of three Israeli teenagers after the pop star Lorde cancelled a planned performance in Tel Aviv.
Conclusion – Jews or I guess Israel are news whether at Labour Party conference or the Guardian readership and many other parts of our society.
As Melanie Phillips writes: ‘All this has made one thing crystal clear. Palestinianism is now the signature cause of the Labour party. Members don’t wave the flag of the potential state of Kurdistan, or Tibet, or identify any other foreign cause to be more important than British domestic issues.
So why has Palestinianism become the cause of causes? The answer is that the obsession is not with the fate of the “Palestinians”, whose lives in fact have been made wretched by their own leaders and the Arab world in general. The obsession is with the Jews.’
When you think of the Parsha Ha’Shevua, it is quite ironic. Noach was the father of humanity, the Sheva Mitzvot Bnei Noach- the foundation of a moral code for humanity. We as the Jewish people are part of that humanity but a very small part. About 0.2% of the world’s population yet we seem to be everywhere.
At the end of the Parsha we meet Avram. He will be the one to start the Jewish nation, which, as Mark Twain said, ‘ought hardly to be heard of, but he is heard of, has always been heard of.’
Twain, unlike our friends in Labour saw that as remarkable and praised us for being ‘as prominent on the planet as any other people, and his commercial importance is extravagantly out of proportion to the smallness of his bulk. His contributions to the world’s list of great names in literature, science, art, music, finance, medicine, and abstruse learning are also away out of proportion to the weakness of his numbers. He has made a marvellous fight in the world, in all the ages; and has done it with his hands tied behind him.’
And it all begins tomorrow – Noach the father of them all and Avram the father of a tiny nation which has, and which will transform the entire world.
Now that is worth reporting!
Rabbi Andrew Shaw