Checkpoint Exhibition, Hinde Street Methodist Church, London on Facebook
For the whole of last week this church displayed a replica checkpoint ‘put together on the basis of principled impartiality’. (statement)
This blog begins as one story but unfolds differently. Here’s how.
24/9/16 is the date of my final draft. 25/9/16 reflects what happened overnight.
There are two long and winding threads on the HSMC checkpoint exhibition Facebook page. Some comments are pure Jew hating poison, full of lies and conspiracy theories, with robust proactive rebuttals from our friends. The threads continuously shape shift.
We are wrong footed at the beginning and need to post because we want to stand up for ourselves against this misbegotten and biased exhibition which gives no explanation for the lifesaving reasons Israel erected a barrier.
Criticisms of the exhibition have been published in the mainstream media from former Archbishop of Canterbury, Lord George Cary, The Board of Deputies, The Zionist Federation and Rabbi Barry Marcus. Hinde Street Methodist Church is approached by The Zionist Federation and the Board of Deputies and eventually take notice. No so the Facebook posters.
Overnight or yesterday, one thread, possibly the most Jew hating one, has been redacted. Why?
Much of what follows is from the censored thread so you will no longer find it unless, like me, you kept a selection of screenshots and/or copies. I wonder if Hinde Street has kept copies or if they hope they have permanently erased this shameful evidence? I think I have been blocked by some haters so because of this there is some evidence I can’t double check and I will be clear about this. All quotations are as written by the poster.
Karl Eldin: ‘We are talking Israeli apartheid here – I have nothing against Jews’. (sic)
Eldin’s FB public page shows him proudly showing off a deluxe hotel room in Dubai. Helen points out that Dubai’s human rights record is appalling and the staff in his hotel could have been slaves. Why is he targeting Israel? From memory he accuses Helen, Lucille and me of bullying him because we dare to refute his allegations.
There are diatribes from people outside the UK, mainly from the USA. One of them is a ‘Truther’ (the evidence has gone with the thread). These are conspiracy theorists who believe that Jews are behind 9/11, not just the Jewish Rothschilds, but the ‘Jewish’ Rockefellers. Why should truth get in the way of a truther; if the name sounds a bit foreign, don’t fact check.
I’m glad to say there are very few of them, they just shout lies and hatred of Israel as a front for hating Jews, and they all ‘like’ one another’s posts. Some of the likers are careful not to write virulent comments, but their likes betray them. If you like a Jew hating comment, which calls for the destruction of all Israelis, then you are exposed as a Jew hater. How do the organisers of this exhibition explain how these people help their specified aim of dialogue?
Diane Garza Monday (19/9/16) 22.11
‘Nothing would make me happier than for Israelis to disappear.’(sic) Likes: Jane Juanita O’Leary, Karen Smith
Steven Hamilton-healey Tuesday 20/11/16 00.00
Accuses Israel of the following ‘ Soldiers shooting children for fun, using poison gas in tunnels that people rely on for humanitarian aid, aiding, funding, training and healing isis mercenaries, false flags all around the world, the tarnishing of the good name of judaism, apartheid, illegal organ harvesting, genocide, infanticide, holocaust. ‘ (sic)
DG Monday (19/9/16) 22.11 ‘ at the same time, they cry victimization. Seriously you can’t make this crap up.’ (sic)
Susan Rumsey Monday(19/9/16) 17.57 ; ‘Yawn … here comes the victim mode, lol.’ (sic)
DG’s comment is naked Jew hatred, but let me unpack SHH’s one. Can you see what he’s done there? He’s written a shopping list of unproven slander, using words that are most designed to hurt Jewish people.
He’s said that the tunnels are for ‘humanitarian aid’. I don’t think so. And he’s simultaneously trying to distance himself from being called antisemitic by saying that it ‘tarnishes the good name of judaism’. That lower case ‘j’ gives the game away. Perhaps SHH doesn’t do grammar, but post Shoah, T S Eliot sort of apologised for his poetic Jew hatred by changing Bleistein and all his jews to Jews. It’s small but vital.
SHH shows himself a conspiracy theorist when he defames Israel’s amazing humanitarian aid, much of it medical, by falsely accusing it of backing Isis by aiding, funding, training and healing their mercenaries.
Finally, did you spot SHH’s blood libel made explicit in the vile accusation that Israel harvests human organs?
From now on I’m going to say Jew hater, not antisemite because I’m cheesed off with repeated ignorant comments like the answer to the following:
Richard Millett 19/9/16 22.23; ‘Diane Garza at least you are honest with your anti-semitism’
DG 19/9/16 23.3: ‘Hey Richard…newsflash…I AM a semite. you twit! so yeah, im against myself. good one’ (sic)
Helen Oster, the Nobel laureate of typing with one finger, and Lucille Cohen are marathon posters to this Hinde Street thread as are James Dyer, Paul Corrick, Edward Moss, Jonathan Hoffman, Richard Millett and all others who have refuted these posts vigorously and added facts and figures. Sorry if I’ve left you out, but the thread’s been disappeared now. I comment occasionally, but it sucks the spirit out of me. Medals go to everyone, including the wonderful Christians, and specifically Methodists, who have proudly proclaimed their distance from this exhibition.
I’ve learned a lot from the Hinde Street page including the following two:
Rebecca Mendelson 19/9/16 : ‘Helen is copying and pasting that same little comment all over the place. She’s what is known as “Hasbara”. Google the term. These folk are paid by the government of Israel to spread disinformation about Israel. When they can no longer find anything decent or honorourable to comment about Israel, they use diversionary tactics (such as her comment above), or they deflect. Don’t respond to these folk – they get paid by the comment, so by responding to it you are just falling prey to their agenda. Sad but true :(.’ (sic)
Brendan Devenney 19/9/16: ‘How much are they paying you Helen?’ (sic) Likes: Karen Smith, Elleanne Green, Tim McGinty
Well – nobody told me and where do I go to collect the money? If I and other Facebook activists, who support Israel against calumn, had a penny for every comment we’d posted we’d all be millionaires. This is a libel; it doesn’t only evoke the trope of Jews and money, but it is such a lie it discredits everything else this bunch and their ilk spew out and once again exposes their hatred of Jews.
At the last minute, in the face of the ongoing challenge and intervention by the BoD and the ZF, the Church allows a small stand to refute the lies. Not enough.
Here’s where I stand on this. This exhibition was a missed opportunity to create dialogue; it made things worse and the organisers are to blame for not realising their own and the exhibition’s deficiencies. As any hope of a peace settlement recedes, the need for a barrier increases; it saves lives.
Earlier I asked why Hinde Street took one of the two threads down. You may have your own theories. First of all, here are some more redacted comments:
SHH (no time and date) ‘What’s the difference between an Israeli and a nazi german? Genuine question.’ (sic)
Jane Juanita O’Leary 20/9/16 00.15 ‘You guys make Hitler look lie a saint by comparison!’(sic)
Lara Varsalona 19/9/16 19.29 ‘Isrealhell kills children. The Zionist owned media rarely shows us’(sic) Likes: JJO, KS, Catherine Strout, Diane Dillon, Nick Murducco
When you set up a Facebook group, especially a public one, you need to have admin who moderate it day and night. I think Hinde Street Church was negligent in its failure to do this. Until the whole thread was removed, it stood for days, bursting with unmoderated hateful and hurtful lies. I have evidence for more than the selection highlighted here. Knowledgeable and gallant people, some of them Christians and Methodists, rallied round and countered these lies but the distressingly abhorrent comments sat festering. The people responsible for birthing this hate fest need to examine their consciences; why did it take outsiders like Lord George Carey to point out the immediate and lasting damage that has been caused?
I will write about the thread that has been left up in another blog.
In the meantime, take note; I and many others, by using whatever peaceful means we can, will not stand by and hear the IDF, Israel and Israelis, Zionism and by extension every Jew who believes in Israel’s right to exist, unfairly pilloried and slandered by liars and conspiracy theorists.
Israel, the only Jewish State and the only democratic state in the Middle East, is the scapegoat of the world.
Stop Press 26/9/16
The second thread has now gone and I can’t find any mention of the Checkpoint exhibition on the Hinde Street Church Facebook page, other than a post they’ve been tagged in. They’ve wiped it out and we are left to speculate about their reasons.