More on Red Ken...
A good overview of the latest from 'Red' Ken.
Speaking of Israeli treatment of the Palestinians, Livingstone went on: "Under foreign occupation and denied the right to vote, denied the right to run your own affairs, often denied the right to work for three generations, I suspect that if it had happened here in England, we would have produced a lot of suicide bombers ourselves."
This last passage is extraordinary and worth taking apart in detail to illustrate the kind of mind-set we are dealing with.
THE FIRST clause, of course, is a flat-out lie. As Livingstone must surely know, all citizens of Israel proper, including more than a million Arabs, have the right to vote in Knesset elections. As he must also know, Palestinians living in the territories also have a vote and recently and very publicly used it. They did, after all, elect Mahmoud Abbas as PA chairman.
The second clause is a slippery but highly characteristic deception. The only reason the Palestinians do not run their own affairs is because they have consistently refused to accept statehood alongside Israel.
The third clause contains another lie: Israel does not prevent the Palestinians from working and only stops them from coming to work inside Israel when it is concerned about terrorist attacks.
But, interestingly, note how that clause concludes with the words "for three generations." Here, the mask has slipped.
Three generations (60 years by most definitions of the word "generation") refers back to the inception of Israel itself. Perhaps unwittingly, Livingstone reveals his annihilationist prejudices.
It is not the "occupation" that concerns him, it is the very existence of the Jewish state.
The final part of the passage contains both obscenity and idiocy. It is obscene because, on the basis of the above noted lies and deceptions, it offers Palestinian suicide bombers the excuse of "just cause." Who could really blame them? he effectively says.
It is idiotic because one could easily quote dozens of peoples who have lived under genuine tyrannies but have not responded by strapping themselves up with explosives to blow to pieces as many men, women and children as they can. Did Jews respond to the Holocaust by slaughtering innocent Germans? Did east Europeans respond to Stalinism by blowing up Russian buses?