On The Street, 2nd August 2014

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November 1938 a pogrom was carried out in Germany when Jewish businesses were targeted having their windows smashed and their businesses wrecked.  This was known as “Cristal Nacht” (The Night of Broken Glass) and signalled the boycott of all Jewish businesses.

Across Europe, in recent weeks, there has been a rise in Anti Semitic attacks with synagogues being vandalised, Jewish businesses targeted and Jews being beaten.  The worse incidents have been in France provoking many French Jews to leave the country.

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Here in Manchester a small Jewish business has been targeted by pro-Palestinian demonstrators, elements of which have issued death threats against the owners.

Kedem-Cosmetics-Store-Manchester

There have also been attacks on Jews, vandalism in a local Jewish cemetery. We cannot sit idly by as Jews are being targeted so today we joined a large contingent of supporters to stand with the owners of the Kedem store and the people of Israel in general.

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Both Miguel and John had the privilege of addressing the crowd.  Miguel spoke concerning the demonstrators that had been attacking Jews and calling out, “Gas the Jews” and “Heil Hitler”! as well as targeting local businesses.  He stated that no one had the right to do such a thing as this was not political but racist.  John spoke concerning the history of Palestine and how the two State solution had been marked out right from the very beginning with the defeat, in 1918, of the Ottoman Turks that ruled Palestine for over 600 years.  The land to the West of the Jordan river earmarked for the Jewish homeland and the land to the east of the Jordan river earmarked as a Palestinian Arab State.

The Pro-Palestinian demonstrators were kept from attacking the store and its supporters by a large cordon of police.  These people gathered on two sides, at one point blocking the traffic on  Deansgate.  Some of the Islamic fundamentalists were chanting, “From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free!”  This refers to all the land between the Jordan river and the Mediterranean Sea, which is now the State of Israel.  This means that they support the destruction of Israel and the expulsion of the Jews from the land.

Amélia, in the meantime, held up the Israeli Flag and a sign that said, “Hamas is destroying the Palestinian Future.”  She also had a friendly conversation with a couple of the female police officers and a male officer.  She shared how that she has a sister in Portugal who is a police officer and showed them a photograph of her.  She also explained how that the goal of Hamas, and its supporters, is the destruction of Israel and how that Hamas takes the money sent to them in aid and uses it to fund terrorist attacks on Israelis.  Hamas also terrorises the people of Gaza and has killed hundreds of Palestinian Arabs who are suspected of being “collaborators with Israel” or were members of the secularist Fatah movement. 

Hamas has also used child-labour in order to build the tunnels they have used to carry out attacks on Israel.  160 children have died whilst working on these tunnels buried alive as the tunnels collapsed.

At one point she was manhandled by a police officer who saw the sign that she was holding and mistook it for being in support of the anti-Israel supporters.  The officer wanted her to join the anti-Israel demonstrators.  She told him that she was not with the other group and that if he pushed her again she would “sue him”!  He relented and told her to return to the Pro-Israel group.

What was also encouraging was the number of Christians, most of whom we knew, that turned out in support of the Jews.  A couple of them read from Psalm 83 which speaks of a confederacy of nations surrounding Israel with the aim of cutting “them off from being a nation; that the name of Israel may be no more in remembrance.” (vs. 4)

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