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Submitted by Jason on Wed, 23/07/2008 - 12:46

On 'Israel/Palestine': OK I, largely, stand corrected- though some times you (plural) use Israel on its own e.g.
Hal Draper and Israel

On Respect, Bill can (if he wishes) answer for himself as well but I think our point is this:

we do have disagreements with Respect, sometimes expressed quite sharply but that doesn't mean we are not in favour of joint work with them in campaigns where we can and that we express our criticism in a fraternal manner.

I'm sure you'd agree on the joint work issue but I think we perhaps emphasise it more.

In terms of polemic I would be even more than most of the comrades of PR for couching it in polite terms. Not at all to hide or disguise or gloss over points of disagreement but to rather 1) cut through the sort of hostility all too often erected on the left 2) to maximise the chance that we are actually listened to if only by a minority 3) to try to overcome the very common perception based to a large extent on reality that the left groups in general are intemperate, rude and dismissive of each others' viewpoints. Respect has problems of course- not least the sidelining of socialism and class, the promotion of electoralism, the silence or at best muted criticism of Galloway's mistakes. All these need to be emphasised as well. But I'm convinced this is best done by entering into dialogue, by being scrupulously polite and offering joint work and discussions.

If I have a good freind making what I feel may be mistakes I do not denounce her/him. If I want to be effective I emphasise points of agreement, I emphasise how much we share and the good points all the more to hone in on and make my criticism more effective and most of all to open up a dialogue.

That's what we should be doing I feel.

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