, 61 tweets, 11 min read Read on Twitter
THREAD: In response to David Collier (@mishtal), whose critique of my piece on Medium can be found here -----> david-collier.com/shaun-lawson-s…
1) Collier accuses me of bringing my grandmother's story to the table as a 'weapon'. That is offensive. My grandmother's story is the central theme of my entire existence: in what it taught me about mankind's hatred to its fellow mankind.
2) I don't 'deploy my Jewish identity'. Being Jewish is central to who I am. Being Jewish *is* my identity.
3) If the press covered right wing antisemitism in anything like the same way as left wing antisemitism, we wouldn't be in this lunatic, hypocritical beyond belief circus now. Right wing AS is a lot more common than left wing AS, as proven here. jpr.org.uk/documents/JPR.…
4) Consistently, what the research finds is an ENORMOUS gap between perceptions of left wing AS among the Jewish community, and actual antisemitism held by people on the left. This gulf needs to be explained. My article does so.
5) Research has repeatedly shown that public perceptions of levels of immigration to Britain, the numbers of Muslims in Britain, the numbers of benefit scroungers in Britain, the numbers of asylum seekers applying in Britain, and the amount spent on benefits are ALL wrong.
6) Just as public perceptions on the EU were/are wrong. Public perceptions on economics and 'living within our means' were/are wrong. Public perceptions on the impact of cuts are also very very wrong, given the public keeps voting for them.
7) Why has all this happened? Because the media parroted and amplified utter nonsense from politicians. With regard to the EU, this is how it worked ----> facebook.com/martin.fletche…
8) If the argument is "oh, the public make up their own minds", why do we think our media is mostly owned by oligarchs? They do that for fun, do they? No. They do it to influence and drive opinion, and protect their interests.
9) Rupert Murdoch bought The Times and Sunday Times in 1981. Since then, he has NEVER been on the losing side of any election or referendum. Never, ever. It's precisely because the public is so miserably misinformed and betrayed by its media that we're in this colossal mess now.
10) I've accepted that Corbyn was naive and foolish with regard to Palestine Live. He should've done better, a lot better. But that's all.
11) Collier takes issue with my statement that "not many Facebook users scroll through a group’s entire content before posting something perfectly innocently" - even though it's reality. Who in the world has the time?
12) Collier then casts a repugnant slur: "What [Shaun] seeks to do is convince everyone that the State of Israel, the Jewish press, the Jewish people speaking out against Corbyn and indeed 93%+ of all Jews everywhere are actually the real antisemites". Utterly ridiculous nonsense
13) Defamatory nonsense too. And so at odds with what the article sets out, it's laughable as well as offensive beyond belief.
14) This appears to be Collier and others' real game. Not just divide Jews - but silence any Jew who has a different opinion. I find it appalling: if in his case, all too predictable. In a world where even Michael Rosen is being attacked, something has gone very very wrong.
15) Collier writes that Corbyn blatantly avoids meeting the Israelis. Well - how many Israelis have offered to meet him? Given he's been denounced as an antisemite in the Israeli press and by Israeli politicians, the answer can't be many. Any at all?
16) Collier then writes "Shaun disgracefully accuses Gnasher of ‘Holocaust Denial’. Er, David. Gnasher's Holocaust denial (in a roundabout sort of way) and antisemitism is RIGHT THERE in screenshots in my article. Shall I post them again? Here you go. Always happy to be of help.
17) Gnasher, incidentally, is STILL USING that article about that disgraceful German teacher who posed as a Jew. It's what happens when Gnasher has nothing left other than McCarthyite smears.
18) Tellingly, Collier ignores altogether that the subject of his Herut talk, Jabotinsky, was the founder of the Irgun. Remember: Collier has described BDS as a 'terrorist movement'. Are there good terrorists and bad terrorists in David's eyes?
19) I have zero time for Tony Greenstein whatsoever and apologise, genuinely, for linking to his blog. That was a misstep on my part. Mea culpa: link deleted. But the image I posted of Collier isn't a case of mistaken identity. Collier acknowledges it's him. Quite the coincidence
20) NB. I have never accused Collier of being far right himself. Only, as the article states, that "among Collier’s friends are far right lunatics". Quite strange for someone accusing Corbyn of guilt by association to be continually guilty by association themselves.
21) Hajo Meyer was a Holocaust survivor. Jonathan Hoffman continually insulted him, including in his JC blog linked to in the article. That is disgusting. Hoffman didn't just 'disagree' as Collier claims; he hurled abuse at Meyer. Atrocious.
22) I actually agree with Collier about the disgraceful betrayal of the Palestinians by many neighbouring Arab states. I'm looking at you, Jordan, in particular: however many refugees you're inundated with right now. Jordan's history regarding the Palestinians is shameful.
23) But language matters. It matters a heck of a lot. Both Collier and myself know this, I hope, better than most. And the language he used to describe Palestinian refugees was appalling. The lack of compassion contained within, shocking.
24) It's the sort of language, incidentally, that the right in Israel have used far too often over the last couple of decades. That the Palestinians have been dehumanised by very many frankly isn't in dispute.
25) If Corbyn ever used such language about anyone or anything at all, the roof would come off in how people would react. Collier should reflect on his profound double standards here.
26) As for Hoffman: he's damned by his own consistent behaviour. Heckling and jeering Hajo Meyer. Calling him "the amazing dancing bear". Posting that lunatic nonsense on his blog. Attending rallies alongside the EDL. He's lost any possible right to the benefit of the doubt.
27) I make no apology whatsoever for posting the Aloni video. What she said does happen and has happened. That doesn't mean for a single moment that antisemitism doesn't exist, or that it doesn't exist on the left. Of course it does, in both cases.
28) In 2017, as is pretty well known to most, Al-Jazeera made an investigative documentary called 'The Israel Lobby'. Incomprehensibly, Ofcom received many complaints that it was 'antisemitic'. What?! A report which tells the truth about something is 'antisemitic' now?
29) A victim of the smears which Aloni alluded to is Mike Sivier. Will the Campaign Against Antisemitism apologise for defaming him? Don't be silly - why would they do that? Their article which smeared him is still there.
30) Sivier won his IPSO case in August. Why is CAA's article defaming him in the grossest terms imaginable still there? Even the Sunday Times have finally (along with the Sun, the Mail, the Express and the JC) retracted the story. What does the CAA think it's doing?
31) These baseless smears wreck reputations and wreck lives. More than that: they do no good to the ongoing fight against antisemitism whatsoever.
32) I have no issue with Stephen Pollard's opposition to Islamofascism whatsoever. I'd like to think all fully paid-up members of the human race are at one on that.
33) I have a very big issue indeed with a) Pollard's opposition to multiculturalism b) His grotesque agreement with Farage's racist 'divided loyalty' trope against Muslims c) His abhorrent refusal to take down a piece which left a Jewish family in serious danger from neo-Nazis.
34) This is the same Pollard who editorialised about an 'existential threat' posed by Corbyn to Britain's Jews. The hypocrisy is stupefying; the lack of respect or support shown to that poor family, indefensible. I'm shocked others haven't condemned in the same way I have.
35) Tellingly - oh so tellingly - Collier totally avoids any of this. Disgracefully, he dismisses it as "a smear attack against... [someone who] has annoyed a few people in his time". Note to Collier: a smear is not a smear when it's grounded in facts. Which you simply avoid.
36) That Collier is not in shock at what Pollard did to that poor family - that he's not outraged, disgusted, and showing his solidarity to that poor family - says it all quite frankly. Showing your empathy and compassion for others again here, David. Or lack thereof.
37) I'm not even going to get into Tracy Ann Oberman's disgusting conduct. That's for later. Tracy can consider that both a warning, and a promise. Collier moves on to Sussex Friends of Israel and poor, misunderstood Simon Cobbs.
38) Collier claims that "a sewer that exists to discredit those like Simon Cobbs". Sorry David. Cobbs does that all by himself. Anyone giving the behaviour you see here the benefit of the doubt is on another planet entirely. Which I'm glad I don't inhabit.
39) For some truly unfathomable reason, Collier totally ignores this video too. Of a Sussex Friends of Israel member making a DEATH THREAT right in front of Cobbs. Which blows his "anyone can have a bad day" thesis totally out of the water.
40) Is behaviour like that what Collier refers to as "fighting Israel’s corner for years... on the streets"? More than that: where's the need to 'fight Israel's corner' on the streets of Britain anyway? What is this nonsense?
41) Collier dismisses those Jews insulted in front of him at the protest (shown in my article) as 'fringe Jews'. Here we go again. Only some Jews matter to people like David; not others. Why? Don't their rights count?
42) Then, finally, we move on to Riley. The woman who thinks a short statement defending free speech is in any way 'promoting antisemitism'. The woman who used the exact same freedom of speech defence to explain her support for Mark Meechan. Hypocrisy much, Rachel?
43) And then Collier makes his most despicable slur. Utterly abhorrent. Apparently, the abuse, the bullying, the harassing of a 16-year-old girl "reeks of behind-the-scenes manipulation". Yes, you read that right. That is what he thinks.
44) The same man who, quite rightly, takes furious umbrage at antisemitic tropes of 'behind the scenes manipulation' makes the same comment about the grotesque abuse of a child. Vile. Beneath contempt.
45) That girl's family have also been abused. People have tried to find their address for God's sake. Oberman's abused her and her family. He even - get this - accuses those he slanders as "pushing her into action" of being like Hamas. When you're in a hole David, stop digging.
46) The contempt he displays towards what that poor girl and her family have gone through - not to mention her ability to know her own mind and express herself as wonderfully articulately as she does - says it all.
47) Collier completely ignores the very clear role Riley played in all this: especially after the girl in question begged her for help. I've set that role out in detail in the article. Riley must be held accountable for it. She's a despicable bully and gaslighter of children.
48) Collier is then all upset about my highlighting various individuals following as vile an account on Twitter as it's possible to imagine. He obfuscates, he evades, he ignores the point altogether. Oh, and he also tries to set a trap for me too.
49) Him and others clearly want me to repost those images. As the account is suspended for the most hideous tweets imaginable, I ain't doing it. Better luck next time, David.
50) Yes, David, I'm very much a Zionist. I'll defend Israel's right to exist with every last breath in my body. But left wing Zionists like me feel the most tremendous pain and grief at what the Israeli government does to Palestinians every single day.
51) Riley has discussed Zionism on her page many times. Collier is simply wrong about this - but why change the habit of a lifetime, eh David? And then we come to a rather revealing conclusion.
52) In Britain right now, a racist government led by a racist Prime Minister carries out the most horrendously racist policies against so, so many ordinary, decent, good, gentle people. The grotesque details are set out in my article.
53) Also in Britain right now, austerity has killed at least 120,000 people (it'll be more now too). Homelessness is up almost 140% at the last count. Child poverty is projected by the IFS to reach 37% by 2022. Foodbanks are opening in SCHOOLS. for pity's sake.
54) Universal credit has devastated families up and down the UK. No less than the UN has condemned the government for its treatment of the poor and the disabled: many of whom die while waiting for their PIP and ESA appeals, 72% of which are won.
55) This is the sort of thing which happens in Tory Britain, not that Collier or Riley could give the remotest damn. Warning: SHOCKING.
56) And you know what Collier thinks of all that? Everything I've just set out (and plenty more besides, like young women sleeping in bins)? Callously, he waves it all away with "it's all about how bad our govt is, how bad the world is, and how good a socialist govt could be".
57) That's it. That is the sum total of his intellectual curiosity on the horrors, the wickedness, the sheer brutality, that goes on in Britain each and every day. And we're expected to believe that this man is a champion of Palestinian rights?!
58) For the record - and this might come as a surprise - I don't much believe Collier to be a malicious or malevolent actor. I just think he's very deeply misguided. He does at least engage on here. I respect him for that, if little else.
59) But the lack of humanity - the lack of basic empathy - his world view reveals shocks and appals me. That's the theme running right throughout his critique: when he's not dodging, deflecting, obfuscating or avoiding, that is.
60) And yes, I stand by my conclusion absolutely. The longer these smears and this witch hunt continue, the more the genuine fight against the evil of antisemitism is harmed. Collier is very well read. I recommend he informs himself of The Law of Unintended Consequences. /ENDS
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