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Day of Action and Bristol Protest to Defend David Miller.

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Another Bristol Protest.

A coalition of Labour Left organisations has called a lobby to ‘Defend academic freedom and free speech’ for tomorrow March 31 in Bristol. 

Bristol University is currently investigating Professor David Miller, teacher of political sociology, for alleged antisemitism. “Nothing could be further from the truth”, says the Labour Campaign for Free Speech. “Professor Miller is a highly regarded academic who has spoken out against Zionism. That is why he has come under fire. Professor David Miller’s job at Bristol University is at stake, because he dared to speak out on Zionism. This is an important test case – should he be sacked, this will result in even more attacks on academic freedom.”

Organisations in support of the March 31 action include Labour Campaign for Free Speech, Labour Left Alliance, Labour in Exile Network, Support David Miller Campaign, Labour Representation Committee, Labour International Left Alliance, Bristol and West Labour Left Alliance and a number of local left groups.

They will assemble at 2pm outside the Wills Memorial Building of Bristol’s University to express “solidarity and support for Professor Miller”.

Labour Campaign for Free Speech.

The claim that Miller is a “highly regarded academic” is not widely shared, nor that the controversy around him is primarily about free speech. However he clearly has the right to his views, however odd and unacademic. This is an interesting claim by these groups:

The proposed policing bill would make it illegal to cause “serious annoyance” – with punishment of up to 10 years in jail. Worse than that, the law is to be applied even if “somebody is put at risk” of so-called “serious harm” (like ‘annoying’ somebody) – ie, if no action has taken place. The bill would make it an offence if just one person complains about feeling “serious distress…annoyance…[or even] inconvenience”.

We hope these principled free speech defenders will stand up for the Batley Teacher in this row.

Yorkshire Live.

Batley Grammar School students are said to have been left “wordless and distraught” following the news a teacher accused of showing pupils a cartoon of the Prophet Muhammad is “fearing for his life”.

Yesterday (Monday), the suspended teacher’s father spoke out for the first time since protestors swarmed to the school’s gates calling for his son to be sacked.

Socialist Worker, which does not seem to be involved in the David Miller considers that no issues of freedom of expression are involved. Protests after teacher shows racist cartoon to Muslim pupils.

Bigots and Islamophobes want to defend the ‘right’ of a teacher to show pupils an offensive image of the Prophet Muhammad. But parents are right to be angry.

They cite an individual with a “colourful past” an authority on the affair.,

Mohammed Shafiq from the Ramadhan Foundation denied ­violence at the peaceful protests.

He instead feared the incident “will be hijacked by those who have an interest in perpetuating an image of Muslims”. It is alarming that the Department for Education chose to amplify those divisions by attacking the parents and pupils,” he added…..

The cartoons in Charlie Hebdo are intended to humiliate people who bear the brunt of institutional and state racism. The Tories use their version of free speech as an excuse to offend and scapegoat minorities.

Stand Up To Racism said, “In educating students we must be clear—insulting the Prophet Mohammed is not freedom of speech, it is racist abuse.”

Here’s the background of the friend of the SWP and new expert on the Batley affair ;

In January 2014 Liberal Democrat parliamentary candidate Maajid Nawaz, a secular Muslim, posted a “Jesus and Mo” image on his Twitter account.[25] The image depicts Jesus saying “Hey” and Mohammed saying “How ya doin'”.[26][27] Shafiq then posted on Twitter “We will notify all muslim organisations in the UK of his despicable behaviour and also notify Islamic countries.”[28][29] Shafiq further Tweeted “Ghustaki Rasool Quilliam,” so linking Nawaz’s anti-extremist think tank with an Urdu term which means “defamer of the prophet”,[30] which under Islamic law is a crime that carries a death penalty.[31] Maajid Nawaz has since received a number of death threats.[25][29][32] Shafiq also reportedly organized an on-line petition to Nick Clegg to have Nawaz removed as a Liberal Democrat candidate,[30] though when the organizers of the petition, named as SA et al., were contacted by the press they distanced themselves from Shafiq.

Written by Andrew Coates

March 30, 2021 at 3:56 pm

David Miller: Bristol University Launches Formal Investigation

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Image

Leading Miller Supporter….

Jewish News:

Bristol University has launched an investigation into a professor who called Jewish students “pawns of a racist regime engaged in ethnic cleansing”.

The institution has come in for severe criticism from communal organisations for not taking action against the academic. After the announcement, Jewish students said the probe was launched “far too late”.

 

The BBC reports,

An investigation has been launched over comments made about Israel by a University of Bristol professor.

Prof David Miller accused the country of wanting to “impose [its] will all over the world”, according to the Jewish Chronicle.

Dozens called for action claiming the comments were “inciting hatred against Jewish students”.

In a statement the university said it recognised the “deep concern” the comments had caused.

“We can confirm that the university has already initiated an investigation into this matter.

“The investigation is being carried out in accordance with the university’s internal process,” adding the process was “confidential”.

The problem many people have is that far from just defending Miller’s right to express an opinion, his defenders are hell bent on defending his ‘academic’ work based on this account of ‘Zionists’ and Agents of Israel operate in the UK.

 

In particular they’ve done this through inter-faith work, pretending that Jews and Muslims working together will be an apolitical way of countering racial misunderstandings. No, it’s a Trojan horse for normalizing Zionism in the Muslim community.

Chicken Soup,

We saw it in [the] East London Mosque, for example, where the East London Mosque, unknowingly, held this project of making chicken soup with the Jewish and Muslim communities coming together. This is an Israeli-backed project to normalize Zionism within the Muslim community. And they’re doing that at the same time as they were doing the attack on Corbyn and the continued attack on the left to normalize Zionism on the Left.

You said they were successful – and I think we can debate the extent to which they were successful – but they did manage to peel off a certain section of the left. And we saw that in the beginning – we didn’t maybe realise [that] at the time – with what happened to Jackie [Walker] who was in the calls? just now, who was peeled off from Momentum and then elements of Momentum peeled off.

So, even elements of Momentum became turned by a kind of left-Zionism, by elements of the [Jewish Labour Movement], partly no doubt to do with the pro-Zionists in the AWL, the Alliance for Workers Liberty, pro-Zionist left. (I believe ‘Trotskyist’ is the appropriate term for them as well.) And so that, I think, is a real issue. And the Israeli Government, of course, have been involved in this from the beginning.

DAVID MILLER’S COMMENTS ON THAT ‘SOUP KITCHEN’: THE FACTS

 

This chap won’t be around to defend him at present.

May be an image of 1 person, standing and text

INDEFINITELY POSTPONED: Zionism: past, present – and future? with Tony Greenstein

This, from the above ‘pro-Zionist’ left,  the AWL, looks a better way to approach some of these issues:

Cathy Nuget.

Unclear

On the IHRA, universal adoption on such an unclear basis may produce a febrile atmosphere where both a backlash against campaigning for Palestinian rights and anti-Zionist witch hunts are possible.

Many Jewish students and staff will want the IHRA text adopted, not least because universities can do much better at tackling bullying, harassment and abuse. We have to campaign for more resources to support students and staff who are victims of abuse. We need clearer and more effective university codes of conducts — ones which allow students and staff to seek redress without recrimination.

There are real problems with free speech at UK universities. They are not as the government defines them. The marketisation of universities has seen the suppression of postering, paper-selling and leafleting, students being subject to surveillance through Prevent, and the use of police against students on campuses.

A broad freedom of speech and organisation for all should be guaranteed, other than for clear-cut fascists and where there is immediately dangerous incitement.

Student unions and activists tend now to argue for administrative bans on reactionary speakers, when a better response is denouncing and organising protests against them. There has been some raising of “no-platforming” from a tactic to a principle of too-wide application.

That has depoliticised student politics. We want political challenges and protests against the views we disagree with to be the norm. Debate from students in all contexts — in lectures and seminars as well — with rules for respectful conduct of debate without fear of recrimination, should always be what we aim for.

 

Written by Andrew Coates

March 17, 2021 at 4:47 pm

Tony Greenstein up before the Beak charged with “intent to destroy property.”

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Tony Greenstein's Blog: 'Did You Hear the One About the Jewish Man who Got Expelled from the Labour Party for anti-Zionism?'

Greenstein’s Friends Have Yet to React.

What was the leader of Labour Against the Witch hunt/Labour in Exile Network/Labour Campaign for Free Speech/Walmington-on-sea Home Guard/Brighton against Zionism, doing so far from the South Coast in the Midlands?

Had he too many pints of the excellent Bank’s Mild?

 

Tony Greenstein charged with ‘possessing an article with the intent to destroy property’

Greeny’s favourite news outlet reports,

The anti-Zionist activist Tony Greenstein has been charged with possessing an article with the intent to destroy property after being arrested by police in the early hours last Tuesday morning.

The JC understands that Mr Greenstein was arrested along with other individuals by West Midlands Police officers.

Following an appearance at Wolverhampton Magistrates Court, the 67-year-old was remanded in custody.

His bail application hearing is now scheduled to take place at Wolverhampton Crown Court this Tuesday morning.

A statement issued to the JC by Staffordshire Police on Monday confirmed: “A 67-year-old man from Brighton has been charged with possessing an article with the intent to destroy property after being arrested by colleagues at West Midlands Police in Walsall in the early hours of Tuesday 9 March 2021.

“Anthony Greenstein of Little Crescent, Rottingdean, has been remanded in custody following an appearance at Wolverhampton Magistrates Court on Wednesday 10 March.”

The wits are already out there, but where are Monster Raving’s mates when he needs them?

 

This Blog hopes the screws will treat Cde Greenstein, “historic criminal convictions for theft and dishonesty“, kindly when he does porridge.

 

Written by Andrew Coates

March 15, 2021 at 7:54 pm

Posted in Israel, Left, Racism

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