Boycott Israel?

Robert Fine and the critique of antisemitism


Dan Davison

Robert Fine, who died on 9 June 2018, was a socialist writer unafraid to stand up to much of the left’s received wisdom on the questions of Israel, Palestine, and antisemitism.

He opposed the “absolute anti-Zionist” standpoint that one should unreservedly object to (a) Israel’s very existence, rather than the oppressive practices of the Israeli state, and (b) any feelings of Jewish communal or national identification with Israel, even when such feelings are accompanied with harsh condemnation of the Israeli government or genuine horror at the Palestinians’ suffering.

Israelophobia is Stalinist regression


Barry Finger

Barry Finger reviews Paul Kelemen’s book The British Left and Zionism: History of a Divorce (Manchester University Press, 2012)

This volume, which joins the herd of independent minds in churning the same old depleted groupthink, purports to challenge the claim that changes over the decades in the left’s appraisal of Zionism and the Palestinian cause stem from antisemitism.

The return of old formulas


Martin Thomas

More debate on the right of return here.

There are about 13 million Palestinians across the world. They do not have a state of their own. They are disadvantaged in all the countries where they are mainly concentrated, though in different ways from country to country.

Jews and Arabs standing together

Above: Activists from the Standing Together movement.

As part of an ongoing series of interviews with leftist activists in Israel/Palestine, Daniel Randall of Workers’ Liberty spoke to Hannah Pollin-Galay, an activist in Standing Together, a cross-party movement organising Jews and Arabs against occupation and in favour of social and economic equality. By profession, Pollin-Galay is a Yiddish and Holocaust researcher at Tel Aviv University.

Labour and Israel-Palestine


Shamsuddin Effendi

Over the past decade the situation for the Palestinians has gone from bad to worse.

Continued occupation, continued settlement expansion in the West Bank, no end to the conflict, the US moving their embassy to Jerusalem (undermining the widely held view that Jerusalem should be shared as a city after a settlement between Israelis and Palestinians) and now Trump has pledged to withdraw all US funding for the UN’s refugee agency for Palestinians UNWRA, while also closing down the PLO’s offices in Washington DC.

How the BDS movement delegitimises Israel


Dan Katz

In an interesting article in the Guardian (14 August) Nathan Thrall sets out the way in which many Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) activists now view the Israel-Palestinian conflict and how they pose a solution.

“BDS has challenged the two-state consensus … by undermining [the] central premise: that the conflict can be resolved simply by ending Israel’s occupation of Gaza, East Jerusalem and the rest of the West Bank…

IHRA definitions do not exclude criticism of Israeli governments



An open letter (printed in full below) is being circulated which calls on Labour’s National Executive to refuse to endorse the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) examples of antisemitism. Workers' Liberty thinks the Open Letter is based on a misunderstanding of the IHRA and thus will not help Labour's leadership deal with the controversy over the Party's new code on antisemitism.

Despite what is said, no IHRA examples, exclude criticism of any racist actions of the Israeli government.

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