A new group of British Jews established to oppose Israel’s occupation of Palestinian land has denounced the “community’s complicit silence on Israel’s transgressions against Palestinians”.
The op-ed in Haaretz, written by Sonia Resnick, an organiser with the recently-formed Na’amod: British Jews Against Occupation, takes aim at “community leaders” who “have sat comfortably on the sidelines, cheering for a team that employs dirty tactics of occupation”.
In addition, Resnick drew attention to the abuse directed at those Jews who speak out, including after a protest against the massacre of Palestinian demonstrators in the Gaza Strip, whose participants “were vilely abused, harassed, and threatened”.
It was that experience, the op-ed explains, that led a number of British Jews to found Na’amod last month, “galvanised by the British Jewish community’s complicit silence on Israel’s transgressions against Palestinians and the severity of abuse levelled at anti-occupation Jews”.
“If our communal leaders will not willingly change,” Resnick wrote, “we must force them to decide: Will they support a system which deprives Palestinians of their dignity and human rights? Or will they support freedom and equality for all Israelis and Palestinians?”
According to Resnick, Na’amod “is part of a growing global movement of Jews opposed to our communities’ complacency and complicity; anti-occupation movements exist throughout Europe and in South Africa, Australia and Canada.”
“Those who uphold the status quo will attempt to silence, smear, and ostracise us,” she warned. “They will seek to have us expelled from our youth movements; barred from our synagogues; dismissed from our jobs in Jewish organisations.”
However, she concluded, “British Jewry, like other diaspora communities, is not immune to progress. Na’amod is part of the next chapter on the road to freedom and dignity for all Israelis and Palestinians.”