Majority of Brits think UK should recognise Palestine as a state

Majority of Brits think UK should recognise Palestine as a state


MEMO | September 25, 2017

A majority of the British public believe the UK should recognise Palestine as a state, according to the results of a new YouGov poll published Monday.

53 percent of respondents said they agree with such a step, as opposed to just 14 percent who disagreed (33 percent said they were ‘neutral’).

Responding to the poll, Manuel Hassassian, Palestinian ambassador to the UK, said public opinion has been shifting. “I have been here for 11 years and have noticed dramatic changes in the British public’s views on Palestine”, he said.

“That only 14 percent say they wouldn’t want the Palestinian state to receive recognition is an indication of the Palestinian cause worldwide being accepted”, he added.

The poll also addressed views amongst the British public towards the Balfour Declaration, whose centenary will be marked in November.

According to the poll, opinion is deeply divided over the Balfour Declaration: 32 percent of Brits think it is something to be proud of, while 27 percent consider it “something to be regretted” (and 41 percent selected ‘Neither’).

The poll also revealed a partisan divide, with a striking plurality (32 percent) of those who voted Labour in the last election viewing the Balfour Declaration as something to be regretted. Among Conservative voters, on the other hand, 40 percent view the historical document with pride, and only 21 percent with regret.

The poll also asked whether, “given Britain’s historic role”, the country has “a particular responsibility to help sort out the Israeli-Palestinian conflict now”, to which 55 percent responded ‘No’, and 45 percent answered ‘Yes’.


dispatches – inside Britain’s Israel Lobby

Inside Britain’s Israel Lobby


UK banks ‘complicit’ in Palestinian oppression, rights group claims

UK high street banks are investing in and arranging loans for firms supplying arms to Israel

Palestinian children play amidst the ruins of a building destroyed during the 50-day war Israel waged on Gaza in the summer of 2014 in Gaza City, on April 13, 2014 (AFP)

British high street banks including HSBC and Barclays are a “crucial link in the chain” of Palestinian oppression as they invest in and loan money to companies who supply arms to Israel, a campaign group has claimed in a report.

The “Deadly Investments” report by War on Want explores the business relationship between the UK’s financial sector and 19 companies which supply Israel with weapons and technology it says are used against Palestinians.

“The deadly trade of arms is facilitated not only by the UK government,” it claims. “UK banks and financial institutions participate in Israel’s militarised repression by holding shares in companies that sell military technology and weapons to Israel, and by providing and facilitating loans to companies producing such military technology and weapons.”

“Our findings show that UK banks and other financial actors facilitate and profit from Israel’s militarism, making them complicit in Israel’s crimes against the Palestinian people.”

Investments and loans

The report comes on the back of the release of guidance by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights last month, clarifying that banks and financial institutions have a responsibility to “avoid causing or contributing to adverse human rights impacts” and “prevent or mitigate adverse human rights impacts that are directly linked to their operations, products or services by their business relationships”.

The report said the banks in question hold shares worth more than £10.8bn ($13.9bn) in military and technology companies such as BAE Systems, General Electric and Lockheed Martin.

War on Want used the Orbis database, a commercial financial database, and the website to produce the report.

According to the group, HSBC owns shares worth more than £831m ($1.07bn) in firms that provide arms and technology to Israel, including £180m ($232m) of shares in BAE Systems, which manufactures the target selection displays in F-16 fighter jets used by Israel in its 2014 assault on Gaza.

HSBC is also said to own £102m ($131.4) of shares in Boeing, the US company that provides Israel with Apache helicopters and Hellfire missiles.

The British high street bank also has significant investments in Caterpillar, whose specially modified bulldozers are used to demolish Palestinian homes, and in Raytheon, whose “bunker buster” bombs were used by Israel to target civilian homes during the 2014 assault on Gaza.

HSBC in 2010 published its ethical guidelines for investments in the defence industry. It said that while it does not invest in any company that manufactures cluster bombs or anti-personnel mines, it does provide financial services to customers who sell or manufacture weapons among other business.

HSBC told War on Want that it holds shares in arms companies on behalf of clients, but did not say which investments these were.

It also referred War on Want to its Defence Equipment Sector Policy which said that “HSBC decided in 2000 to withdraw progressively from the financing of the manufacture and sale of weapons”.

British financial institutions have also been providing or arranging syndicated loans that run into the billions for companies that sell arms and technology to Israel.

Syndicated loans are provided to a borrower by a group of lenders, where the financial institution or bank can manage the syndicate, act as a lender, or both.

Barclays alone participated in 29 such loans totalling £41.1bn ($53bn) to firms including American aerospace company Lockheed Martin, which is in the process of delivering 50 F-35 jets to Israel, and Northrup Grumman, which built three Saar V missile ships used by the Israeli navy to police the coast of Gaza.

According to the report, HBSC participated in 15 syndicated loans totaling £19.3bn ($25bn) which went to several companies including British manufacturer Rolls-Royce.

‘Profiting from oppression’

War on Want’s senior military and security campaigner, Ryvka Barnard, said: “UK high street banks are key players in the UK-Israel arms trade and make these deadly deals possible.

“Banks like HSBC are a crucial link in the chain of oppression, facilitating and profiting from the brutal military repression of Palestinians.

“War on Want is calling for banks to divest from, and stop facilitating loans to, companies that sell weapons and security services to Israel.

“We also repeat our call for the UK government to implement a two-way arms embargo on Israel.”

The campaign group, which has been a stalwart advocate of the BDS movement and has called for a two-way arms embargo with Israel until it complies with international law, suggests that some of the companies mentioned could be criminally liable for complicity.

“A company that facilitates the violation of international law by, for example, providing weapons to a government that uses them to carry out war crimes, may be criminally complicit with that crime.”

The UN Human Rights Council has repeatedly called on companies to stop all business involvement in Israel’s illegal settlements and voted to create a database of companies that are involved in supporting and facilitating settlement activity in 2016.

With the release of the report coinciding with 50 years of Israel’s military occupation of the West Bank, Gaza Strip and Golan Heights, and 10 years since the continuing blockade of the Gaza Strip began, the report said: “The impacts of the occupation and siege on Palestinians have been devastating, an ever-intensifying system of human rights abuse and imposed poverty on millions of Palestinians.”

2017 also marks 100 years since the Balfour Declaration which declared British support for a Jewish homeland in Palestine.

In a statement to MEE, HSBC said it had “progressively withdrawn from financing the manufacture and sale of defence equipment”.

“We believe that our policy, which is reviewed regularly, is one of the most restrictive in the financial services industry,” said Francis Sullivan, European regional head of sustainability.

“We value the work carried out by NGOs such as War on Want and we have sought to meet with them to understand their specific concerns.”

Save Craig Murray @CraigMurrayOrg

Save Craig Murray

By Craig Murray | September 6, 2017

I am being sued for libel in the High Court in England by Jake Wallis Simons, Associate Editor of the Daily Mail Online. Mr Wallis Simons is demanding £40,000 in damages and the High Court has approved over £100,000 in costs for Mark Lewis, Mr Wallis Simons’ lawyer. I may become liable for all of this should I lose the case, and furthermore I have no money to pay for my defence. I am currently a defendant in person. This case has the potential to bankrupt me and blight the lives of my wife and children. I have specifically been threatened by Mr Lewis with bankruptcy.

Mr Wallis Simons boasts on his website:

In 2015, I published a series of articles exposing Jeremy Corbyn’s links with anti-Semitic figures, and this led to what is now known as the “Labour anti-Semitism scandal.”

It was my Sky TV appearance on this subject which led to this libel action against me.

It is my view that English libel law remains an international disgrace, a device by which the wealthy and those with wealthy backers, and only they, can stifle freedom of speech. Contempt of Court laws – with a penalty of two years imprisonment – even prevent poor defendants like me from putting their case openly before the public in order to appeal for a public defence fund. I am extremely limited in what I can tell you.

How can it cost just one party six times the average annual national wage to litigate a five minute TV broadcast? The libel system, with its in-built advantage to the wealthy and those backed by the wealthy, is a complete disgrace. Andy Wightman, the brilliant Scottish land reform campaigner, has been going through the same Hell.


I find I am obliged to beg you for funds to help me defend the case. I need to ask every single person who reads this blog to find it in their heart to make at least some contribution, as much as you can afford. The scale of this thing is such that I need to ask those of you who are comfortably off to make a far larger donation than you might normally consider. In practice we are going to need to include some four figure donations to make the ludicrous amounts required. But every single penny mounts up and please do give something.

If you have ever enjoyed this blog – join the fight. If you dislike this blog but support freedom of speech – join the fight. If you support the right to defend Palestine without being labelled ant-Semitic – join the fight. If you despised the anti-Corbyn media campaign – join the fight. If the Daily Mail sickens you – join the fight.

Israelis on Facebook celebrating the death of Palestinian children

Every donation, no matter how small, will be gratefully received. The case will be heard in the High Court on 7 November. In the event of victory, after costs are met (even a costs award does not cover all actual costs) excess donations will be returned pro-rata unless you specify they should be applied to the future of maintaining the blog.


This is a question not only of the continued existence of this blog, but of the future well-being of my young family. It is unfair on you for me to place all of that in your hands, but that is the situation into which I am forced.


Welcome to The United Banana Kingdom part one

In 21st century Britain, law obedient citizens are subject to police raids and state terror for expressing their thoughts about the Israeli regime and its forceful lobby.

Yesterday I posted the following humorous meme on my Facebook page:

uk thought police .png

Within minutes reports and testimonies of British victims of police raids popped up on my page. I am sharing a few of them here. As you can see, none of those police actions led to criminal charges. We have a good reason to suspect that we are dealing here with an orchestrated Orwellian campaign that is designed to interfere with our ability to think freely and express those thoughts.

David Carter – “Three police officers entered my home and proceeded to search every room then took possession of three computers while informing me that I was being arrested. Eighteen months after several police visits I’m still waiting to be charged”

Sam Blair – “January 2016 my home was raided by ten or more police officers with a search warrant, they went thru my house looking at my books and taking photos and then took all my internet devices and took me to the police station for 5 hours where they threatened to remove my bra and boots and put me in a cell. I was told by a lawyer to No Comment their questions which I did. Their questions included Did I support ISIS and was I a nazi. At nine o clock that night they then drove me home after 5 hours without a cigarette. Then I waited 18 months without being charged, and after having to do a Diversion from Prosecution Scheme I have had my case closed. The social worker that worked with me said it was obvious that I had been taunted into a corner on Twitter so I believe the Procurator Fiscal could see this too.”

Jo Cullum Stowell – “I was interviewed under caution for wishing the editor of the Jewish Chronicle would burst and CST* and CAA** both told the police I was inciting Jew hatred! I was asked about 20 tweets I’d sent except many of them were photoshopped. It was a joke, CPS*** cleared me of any antisemitism. CAA and CST ‘volunteers’ contacted all my clients using fake tweets to ruin my reputation, they even contacted members of my family. I reported them to the police who said that there hands were tied and they were powerless to do anything, and maybe I should stop using social medial?”

Alison Chabloz – “Police closed an investigation into anonymous, threatening letters I received through the post. A week later, I was the one being arrested

The above presents a serious warning to Britain and its future as a free place.

In part two, we will  look into the case of local councillors who stifle freedom of speech for Israel all in the name of ‘community relations’ and fake ‘diversity.’

cover bit small.jpg


Gilad Atzmon’s Being In Time: A Post Political Manifesto is available now on: and   

* CST- A Jewish British organisation dedicated to the protection of one people only

** CAA – A Jewish British organisation committed  to the fighting against the hatred of one people only

***CPS – The Crown Prosecution Service –  principal public prosecuting agency for conducting criminal prosecutions in England and Wales.

Jew Loving is the Way Forward

First Violent Attack Against Jazz Audience

August 07, 2017  /  Gilad Atzmon

Drummer Will McClure (73) who attended my concert last night was subject to an attack outside my concert by some anti Atzmon hooligans. He was injured in his eye and suffered a shock.

A week ago, Oxford Albion Beatnik Book Shop that hosted my concert received a threatening letter from Stephen Silverman (CAA). Silverman hinted that something may happen unless the club surrendered to his demand and cancelled the concert.  Tonight we saw the first violent attack against Jazz audience. Will was bleeding from his eye for an hour.

We had a packed room in Oxford, I can assure you, they were not impressed.  Brits do not like to see their little cosy Oxford turning into a battle zone. If the CAA is genuinely concerned with antisemitsm it better go out of its way to make sure that such an event never occurs because as things stand, the Campaign Against Antisemitsm (CAA) together with other Jewish organisations such as Jewdas are introducing violence and hooliganism to British arts scene. This is unacceptable and it won’t be tolerated!

I should mention that the Jewish members of the audience were devastated and embarrassed by it all, They insisted to disassociate themselves from this unfortunate event.

The police are involved

Update: July 7 10 AM GMT. Will couldn’t open his eyes this morning.. He is now back in hospital

The following message was left by Will’s wife on my FB page; 

Ann Saxton Mac I hope the person responsible for throwing the egg tonight that was obviously intended for Gilad Atzmon reads this. You see I am the wife of the person you assaulted with the egg. We are not from this country but here on holiday from New Zealand. We first met Gilad 17 years ago when we attended a concert in London & over the years whenever we have traveled we have managed to catch Gilad performing in several different countries. My husband is 73 years old & also a musician. He did not deserve this attack & neither did Gilad or any other person.. The egg struck my husband in the eye. The egg shell shattered & penetrated his eye cutting the eye ball causing it to bleed. He eye sight is badly affected & there is great swelling to his eye socket & no doubt by morning it will be bruised & black & blue. However you will not get away with this the Police are now involved, Your car will be identified by CCTV footage & we will press for criminal charges to be laid & hold you financially responsible for all medical expenses & any physical or emotional damage caused by this random act of stupidity. What you did tonight was nothing short of cowardly behaviour & you should be thoroughly ashamed of what you have done & the harm you have caused my husband. I have been married to this lovely gentle man for 52 years & he really did not deserve this to happen to him. If you had the decency you would admit responsibility & apologize in person but from your behaviour tonight I doubt if you would have the guts to do so, Shame on you whoever you are I hope you are proud of your actions. If you were my son or daughter I know what I would do to you.

Denni Harrison is the owner of Albion Book Shop. He was subject to pressure by the CAA. The following message was left on my FB page:

Dennis Harrison I have hosted Gilad Atzmon perhaps 30 times in ten years, many venues, music and talk. Never ever any hint of problem from audience or any outside (never protesters). Only after receiving a letter from the ‘enforcement’ officer of the Campaign Against Antisemitism (CAA), who has an “understanding that protests… are likely,” do I have trouble. Silverman did not issue a threat, but I draw my own conclusions. The CAA is a sham charity with no conviction that seeks to get others to do its dirty work for them; it believes that “individuals should be at the forefront of the fight,” so should be held accountable for this serious and violent crime upon an innocent bystander.

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