Allow me please to weigh in on the racist statute debate. Firstly I think the statue of King Edward I must come down because he expelled the Jews from England in 1290.
Richard the Lionheart, outside of Parliament has to go. His coronation sparked a nasty pogrom.
William the Conqueror and his apartheid regime banned Jews from owning land. We have to get rid of his statue.
As for King Henry III who has an image outside Kings College in London, he passed the 1253 Statute of Jewry Act, which banned construction of synagogues and forced Jews to wear a badge. How can we expect Jewish students to walk under such a figure at KCL?
St Aldates in Oxford and Christ Church are built on the ruins of the old Jewish quarter, and so is Sainsbury’s in Cambridge. We need to rename the street “Great Jewry.”
Karl Marx wrote about the Jewish vermin and described Jews as money grabbing rats and that there would never be peace in the world, until this “ill” was dwelt with.
The Emperor Hadrian was rotten to the Jews and so the wall, must be renamed or removed.
As for Clement Attlee’s imperialist government, they stopped boats full of Holocaust refugees reaching the Promised Land. Who cares if he introduced the NHS into Britain, I say off with his statue head.
The Simon De Monfort University in Leicester must be renamed as he expelled the Jews from Leicester.
In Spain, the murderous statues of King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella are proudly display in Andalusia, in southern Spain. The two of them massacred and tortured their Jews in the late 1400s until the final expulsion of 1492. An estimated 1.5 to 2 million Jews died travelling, mostly barefoot to other countries.
Karl Lueger was the anti-Semitic Mayor of Vienna and despite having a statue in the city, his picture is on the walls of many cafes and restaurants in the city. We have to boycott those eating establishments.
King Louis IX burned 24 wagonloads of Jewish manuscripts in Paris, including all known copies of the Talmud. His statue should be thrown into the harbour.
The Holy Roman Empress Maria Theresa expelled 20,000 Jews from Prague in 1744. Her statue remains in Vienna. Just so you know, she said, “know of no greater plague than this race, (the Jews) which on account of its deceit, usury and avarice is driving my subjects into beggary.”
Down with Norway’s first king, Christian Frederik. The original 1814 Norway constitution said: “Jews are still prohibited from entry to the Realm.” Yet this statue remains outside the Norwegian Parliament today.
What about the anti-Semitic ideologue of Richard Wagner in Berlin? Let make it an offence to play any “Wagner” music.
Catherine “the Great” confined Jews to the Pale of Settlement, and banned them from living anywhere else in Russia. She also has a statue.
Martin Luther called Jews a “base, whoring people, that is, no people of God, and their boast of lineage, circumcision, and law must be accounted as filth… full of the devil’s faeces … which they wallow in like swine.” Tear down his statue.
I am not going to bore you with a list of almost every pope in history till very recently, but let’s remember Pope Pius VI passed a decree *re-imposing* all previously lifted anti-Jewish measures.
So please, please, do not say to me, “what if there were a Hitler statue where I pass by.” There are enough statues of villains of Jewish history all around Western capitals.
As a practising Jew, if we take down symbols of discrimination, oppression, persecution, ethnic cleansing and genocide, not a stone or a flag would remain across the Western and Islamic worlds.
Human history is mostly one of brutality and exploitation. In order to move forward, we have to remember the past and not erase it.
This piece was written by James Marlow, but taken from an idea from journalist Eylon Levy, who did some painstaking research into many statues and monuments across the world.