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Anti-Semitism not as simple as it appears

Although Des Morgan’s letter pointing to the false equation of anti-Semitism with anti-Zionism is right, his presentation does leave hostages for liars who make that false equation.

Anti-Semitism goes well beyond ill feeling toward Semites. Actually, hatred of Jews has long been a vicious part of European racism shown by anti-Semitic massacres across Eastern Europe well into modern times and of course culminating in the holocaust. It is a supreme irony that European powers, led by elites saturated with anti-Semitism, felt they had the right to dispossess Palestinians who had lived peacefully alongside Jewish people for centuries.

Des suggests the Jewish community has been behind the false definition of anti-Semitism as opposition to the state of Israel. In fact, this mangling of meaning has been promoted by a right wing media and politicians out to de-legitimise solidarity with Palestinians and of course to attack Jeremy Corbyn. Yes; self-proclaimed leaders of the Jewish community have been part of this, but very many Jews oppose the state of Israel and organise Palestinian solidarity. Many of these Jews have themselves been accused of anti-Semitism. Equally, very many Zionists are not Jews.

In the meantime, across Europe and in the USA we see a resurgence of real anti-Semitism, which the Zionists (followers of the political ideology which unconditionally supports the violent disposition of the Palestinian people) seem quite happy to go along with. On May 11th there is a demonstration for Palestine assembling at 12:00 at Portland Place.

Peter Smith, Woodside Avenue, Swindon

Highlighting persecution of Christians in world

I am grateful to Martin Topping for challenging my assertion that Christians in the UK (and the world) are being marginalised, harassed and persecuted (SA, April 30).

I am not quite sure what his reference to the hierarchical body of the Church of England brings to the debate as it doesn’t change one iota the central tenet of my argument, which is not simply an opinion but a recognised fact, that Christians are being marginalised, harassed and persecuted.

My good friend Mark Webb chastises me for not highlighting the fact that people of other faiths are also being persecuted. I am glad to do so, but Mark knows that the context of my letter was to do with the Sri Lankan terror attack which was focussed on the Christian community; and the fact that some people in this country are being victimised as a result of their Christian faith. If I was writing about a specific incident relating to the Jewish or Muslim community I wouldn’t necessarily feel inclined or required to add a postscript highlighting other faith groups.

What Mark is suggesting in his final paragraph is that I should highlight all forms of persecution around the world. That’s not the point of my letter which was to focus on a comment made by the Prime Minister and the Foreign Secretary.

What I did find interesting is how neither Martin or Mark actually condemned the killing and persecution of Christians. I feel sure they would be most happy to confirm they were not displaying unconscious bias against Christians by ignoring the point.

Des Morgan, Caraway Drive, Swindon

Praise for marathon runner PC Phil

Can I send my congratulations to my local PC Phil Croft, from Royal Wootton Bassett, on his fantastic achievement of completing the London Marathon for MIND. I was there 23 years ago and it was tough without the handicap of wearing his full body armour! In fact congratulations to anyone else who ran for MIND. Can I say a big thank you.

This money goes to national MIND. If you wish to support your local MIND, in future events, please go to our website sgmind.org.uk. We will be most grateful. For enquires you can phone 01793 432031.

Peter Crayford, Trustee, Swindon & Gloucestershire MIND

A bite back at London protest disruption

Now that the followers of Extinction Rebellion have achieved their objective of disruption in London and done away with their cars, stripped themselves naked of manufactured clothing products and their glasses made out of polished vegetable leaves, plus given up their mobiles phones, even though most of them have never owned a mobile, tablet or computer, it is now time to spread the word in other countries like China and Russia. Although that means travelling by way of vehicles that pollute the air.

Please don’t state your case by standing in front of those TV cameras which use parts like those horrible batteries that have been made by machines that pollute our atmosphere. Try to contact your other comrades nature’s way and not by using those polluting Royal Mail vans. Time to go worldwide! Good luck with that!

Chris Gleed, Proud Close, Purton

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