Large Rally for
by Yated Ne'eman Staff
In perhaps the biggest-ever public
gathering organized by British Jewry, tens of thousands gathered
Police said some
Security was very tight and
Former prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu told the rally that Israel should not allow a state under Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasser Arafat, and said if a state were created under his leadership, it would not be friendly and peaceful, but a terrorist state.
"We have to debunk the myths created by the totalitarian regime of Arafat," Netanyahu said. "Arafat must go because he did not turn out to be King Hussein, but Saddam Hussein."
Were it not for
British Chief Rabbi Jonathan Sacks, who
noted that the gathering was the largest in the history of
British Jewry, said, "
The rally was also addressed by former Labor Party minister Peter Mandelson, and Conservative Party deputy leader and shadow foreign minister Michael Ancram.
"Violence and terror will only delay and obstruct the just outcome they seek," Mandelson said. "Politics, not violence, secures peoples' lives."
Mandelson added that a vision of peace benefiting all had sustained the peace process for years.
A small number of Jewish peace activists,
including groups called Just Peace and Jews for Justice to
An unusual coalition has been shaping up and
gaining ground in
Some two weeks ago, British Prime Minister
Tony Blair made the bold statement that, "Friendship between
nations is tested in times of crisis and trouble, and
The British Trade and Industry Ministry
decided not to change
Joining them are tabloids such as The Sun and mass- circulation newspapers such as The Daily Telegraph and The Sunday Times, which have adopted a clear pro- Israeli line in recent months.
The Conservative Party which, with the
exception of the Thatcher years, has tended to be lukewarm
Conservative leader Ian Duncan Smith, the head of the opposition, was warmly praised by the British Jewish community and Israeli representatives when he appeared three weeks ago in parliament armed with copies of documents that were confiscated by the IDF during Operation Defensive Shield and showed that Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasser Arafat and other senior PA officials had approved and funded terror operations against Israel.
Blair went even further later in the debate, blaming the PA for its "inability, or refusal, to control terrorism properly" and condemning what he described as its "revolving- door" policy of arresting suspected terrorists and letting them go shortly thereafter.
The change in the Conservatives' public
Duncan Smith, who addressed the fundraising dinner of Conservative Friends of Israel (CFI) took a considerable risk when he confined his criticism not only to Palestinian terrorists "whose sole objective is to destroy Israel and everything she represents," but also blasted the British media.
"Surely it is time that our national broadcasters, not just, but including the BBC, stopped describing Hamas and Jihad with such euphemisms as radical and militant? Let us call things what they are: They are terrorist organizations."
Two weeks ago, at another CFI event, Duncan
Smith raised eyebrows even more. "The Conservative party
He said he would work to root out
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