The UK election results – a Jewish perspective

So after five weeks of campaigning and opinion polls putting the thickness of a cigarette paper between the two main protagonists the Conservatives won what will be called an unlikely victory. Indeed looking at previous election results what David Cameron has achieved is historic. He is the very first incumbent to both increase the share of the vote and to win additional seats in the House of Commons. Not only has his victory seen the demise of all his main rivals (the Labour, Liberal and UKIP leaders all resigned with 24 hours of the polls closing) his party also made huge gains in elections for local councils, winning 400 new seats from the opposition.

From the view of UK Jewry one could be under the impression that this result is disappointing. The reason is that Cameron’s main rival, Ed Miliband is of Jewish stock and he would have been the first British Jewish PM since Disraeli (who was actually Halachically Jewish yet Baptized). However, in the main UK Jews aren’t at all upset at this result. The reason is that Miliband had a reputation of betraying his Jewish roots whilst Cameron only ever found words of praise for the UK Jewish community gave additional funding towards the costs of security for Jewish institutions and Shul’s and was outstanding in his support for Israel during Protective Edge.

From the get-go Ed Miliband was the puppet of the Trade Unions, whose socialist dogma at first swung his election as party leader away from the more center left politics of his brother David, who was also a candidate for the Labour leadership and then dictated his policy towards Israel. That policy led Miliband to denounce Israel’s action in Gaza as ‘disproportionate’ and rubbing salt in the wounds he then instructed his Labour MP’s (under a two line Whip) to support a Commons motion to vote for recognition of Palestine as a state without any pre-conditions. Miliband wasn’t the only critic of Israel who has seen defeat in this election.

Nick Clegg who had been Deputy Prime Minister in the previous coalition Government was also a high profile critic of Israel, as were numerous of his party’s MP’s. Clegg managed to retain his seat yet Israel’s entire critic’s in his Liberal Democratic party lost there’s! The man who has been a ‘thorn-in-the-side’ of UK Jewry in terms of his demonization of Israel and declaring Bradford, the city he represented an ‘Israel free zone’, George Galloway, leader of the Respect Party also lost his seat. In his final speech he was unable to stop himself from blaming his defeat on the Zionists!

So for UK Jews this election result has been a triumph. We have lost many of Israel’s critics and gained a Prime Minister who is more than able to stick his head above the parapet and support Israel against her Islamic fundamentalist enemies.

Is it somewhat ironic that just 10 short months after Protective Edge when UK Jews stood against a fire of increasing anti-Semitic rage and violence whose flames were fanned by these politicians that they now find themselves out of power, away from any influence and consigned to the waste bin of political history, or, is there a higher force that just waited for this opportunity to show what happens when you mess with the Lion of Judah?

About the Author
Howard Klineberg is an English Jew who has always been passionately supporting Israel. At just 16 years of age his late father prevented him going on tour to Israel as he knew Howard probably wouldn't have returned to the UK. Howard is a member of the Leeds Lobby Network who work on numerous campaigns supporting Israel, recently Howard was instrumental in persuading his local member of the UK Parliament to resign from his party's friends of Palestine group.
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