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Has David Miliband changed his spots?

Medical Aid for Palestinians (MAP) has been providing vital help to vulnerable Palestinian communities ever since the Sabra and Shatila massacre 30 years ago.

Eyebrows therefore shot up when MAP announced that former foreign secretary David Miliband will be speaking at its Annual Gala Fundraising Dinner tomorrow (Thursday) held in the posh Sheraton Park Lane Hotel.

It seems he’ll be talking about his visit to the West Bank and Gaza.

Miliband will be forever remembered as the British foreign secretary who shamelessly grovelled to Israel’s gangsters for forgiveness for their running the risk of arrest if they set foot in London.

And he’ll be remembered for not having the guts to go visit Gaza, or even Iran while in office.

Back in 2009 Ehud Barak, Tzipi Livni and retired general Doron Almog, cancelled engagements in London for fear of being arrested. Israel complained bitterly

Miliband actually apologised to Livni and Israeli foreign minister Avigdor Lieberman for the arrest warrant issued against Livni. He promised Lieberman to begin working immediately to change the UK laws relating to ‘universal jurisdiction’.  He asked Prime Minister Gordon Brown and Justice Minister Jack Straw to find an urgent solution.

But the general election overtook him. Miliband’s grovelling promise was echoed by his replacement, William Hague, who announced: “We have had good discussions with Israeli ministers on Universal Jurisdiction where the last government left us with an appalling situation where a politician like Mrs Livni could be threatened with arrest on coming to the UK…”

He said it was “completely unacceptable… We have agreed in the coalition about putting it right, we will put it right through legislation… later this year and I phoned Mrs Livni amongst others to tell her about that and received a very warm welcome for our proposals”.

Never mind that British law was operating perfectly properly. The warrants were issued to answer well-founded charges. Under universal jurisdiction all states that are party to the Geneva Conventions are under a binding obligation to seek out those suspected of having committed grave breaches of the Conventions and bring them, regardless of nationality, to justice. There should be no hiding place for those suspected of crimes against humanity and war crimes. Applications could be made to a court for private arrest warrants, and this had been happening because the government itself was in the habit of shirking its duty under the Fourth 1949 Geneva Convention and dragging its feet until the bird has flown.

The beauty of the private warrant is that it can be issued speedily.

Lord Wilberforce

Lord Wilberforce

Bringing a private prosecution for a criminal offence is an ancient right in common law and, in the words of Lord Wilberforce,

“a valuable constitutional safeguard against inertia or partiality on the part of the authority.”

Lord Diplock, another respected Lord of Appeal, called it “a useful safeguard against capricious, corrupt or biased failure or refusal of those authorities to prosecute offenders against the criminal law”.

Who can forget that Tzipi Livni, Israel’s former foreign minister, was largely responsible for the terror that brought unspeakable death and destruction to Gaza’s civilians during the blitzkrieg known as Operation Cast Lead?

Showing no remorse and with the blood of 1,400 dead Gazans (including 320 children and 109 women) on her hands, and thousands more horribly maimed, Livni’s office issued a statement saying she was proud of Operation Cast Lead. And speaking later at a conference at Tel Aviv’s Institute for Security Studies, she said:

“I would today take the same decisions.”

In a sane world no British government minister would undermine our justice system in order to make the UK a safe haven for the likes of her.

Yet Miliband’s successor Hague said:

“We cannot have a position where Israeli politicians feel they cannot visit this country. The situation is unsatisfactory [and] indefensible. It is absolutely my intention to act speedily.”

He even tried to make Livni’s monstrous crimes look good by claiming, as reported on the Conservative Friends of Israel website, that “the immediate trigger for this crisis [the war on Gaza] was the barrage of hundreds of rocket attacks against Israel on the expiry of the ceasefire or truce.” It is well known that the ceasefire didn’t expire. It was deliberately breached by an Israeli raid into Gaza that killed several Palestinians with the intention of provoking a response that would re-ignite the violence and provide an excuse to launch Operation Cast Lead, which the Israelis had been preparing for months.

As for Avigdor Lieberman, he lives in an illegal squat on stolen Palestinian land and is a wanted criminal on that score alone.

 Livni bleated: “It’s about the entire State of Israel and our ability to go on working together against common threats.”

Common threats? The threats Israel faces are caused by its racist expansion, land theft, general lawlessness and hateful attitude towards its neighbours, not to mention the nuclear menace Israel itself poses to others in the region and the Islamic world generally. To suggest we have anything in common with the Tel Aviv regime is absurd.

Israeli prime minister Netanyahu’s office butted in with this arrogant statement: “We will not agree to a situation in which [former prime minister] Ehud Olmert, [Defense Minister] Ehud Barak and [opposition leader and former foreign minister] Tzipi Livni will be summoned to the bench. We utterly reject the absurdity that is happening in Britain.”

Miliband never went to Gaza when he should have done. But he managed to visit Gaza with Save the Children. “I had not been able to visit while in government for security reasons,” he said in an article in The Guardian.

Bollox. Hamas were honour-bound to take good care of him. The only danger would have been an Israeli air-strike or a Mossad assassin. But those risks go with the job. You can’t be an effective foreign secretary wrapped in cotton wool.

With David Miliband heading up foreign policy it was frankly embarrassing to be British. What sort of transformation has the groveller undergone that makes him now worthy of an invitation to MAP? Has he become a new White Knight championing the Palestinian underdog against the evil occupier?

I hope so. But I’ll believe it when I actually see evidence that this particular leopard’s spots have well and truly changed.


Stuart Littlewood’s book Radio Free Palestine, with Foreword by Jeff Halper, can now be read on the internet by visiting .


18 Responses to Has David Miliband changed his spots?

  1. Blake September 19, 2012 at 11:20 pm #

    David Milliband’s mother is a signatory to Jews for justice for Palestinians but what his position is, is unclear.

  2. who_me September 19, 2012 at 11:30 pm #

    not a leopard changing its spots, but a slug secreting a new coat of slime. sounds more like a typical jewish co-option move.

  3. fool me once... September 20, 2012 at 12:12 am #

    “David Milliband’s mother is a signatory to Jews for justice for Palestinians but what his position is, is unclear.”
    Monday, March 19th,2012 at OneVoice Europe’s gala dinner in London – David Milliband speech;
    “There is a young man here from the University of Manchester, he was at the event I did in Manchester last week, where I was asked about Somalia, and the truth is I really don’t know what the answer is in Somalia. But in respect to that small piece of land at the heart of the Middle East, I do think my opinion and that of the majority of Israelis and Palestinians, which is that you need two states able to live side by side with each other, is the right answer.”

    • fool me once... September 20, 2012 at 12:15 am #

      More like – OneChoice

      • who_me September 20, 2012 at 12:36 am #

        “More like – OneChoice”

        sounds that way. the chosen’s choice.

  4. Roy Bard September 20, 2012 at 10:01 am #

    I wonder why MAP feels that it needs a speaker who is equally at home addressing a meeting of Labour Friends of Israel?

    Is there really no-one else who can put the case the case for the Palestinians more succinctly?

    Are they fooled by his claim that, like his brother, he is a critical Friend of Israel?

    Or have they, like just about every other NGO, sold out……

    • fool me once... September 20, 2012 at 1:17 pm #

      It always struck me as a strange choice having millionaire, UK Conservative (80% Friends of israel), ex-Governor of british colony Honk Kong, as a President of MAP.
      “Decent would-be Palestinian businessmen (the potential backbone of a middle class) are destroyed. Racketeers flourish. Kafkaesque politics produces “Alice in Wonderland” economics.”
      “I strongly opposed the international call a year ago to boycott Israel’s universities. But the Gaza blockade means that Israel boycotts Palestinian academic life.”
      “I want to see Israel, a free, democratic society, live up to its original values and be at peace with its neighbors. It will not achieve this through its appalling Gaza policy. The world – starting with the US administration and the European Union – should tell that to Israel. But don’t hold your breath.”

      • fool me once... September 20, 2012 at 8:57 pm #

        oops! correction – “Honk Kong”
        Hong Kong

      • David Holden September 20, 2012 at 8:59 pm #

        there is a real danger in categorising people as either good or evil. in the end everyone offends and is excoriated. you get to the salafi position. i saw that when i was ‘on the left’.

        hate the sin but not the sinner is good advice. the number of absolutely evil people is quite a small proportion of humanity. but if everyone who disagrees with you about anything is evil they rapidly multiply and become the vast majority.

        i don’t want to be alone in Heaven. and neither do i want to be confined there with a bunch of saintly, self-righteous people who have never done anything wrong, or had even a fleeting unworthy thought. (please see my recent random notes… where i attempted to explain this so i don’t have to include it in every post i make.

        • David Holden September 20, 2012 at 9:15 pm #

          for example i recently saw a competent anti-Jew website which condemned kabbalistik rabbi smiley botech for saying that oral sex can help make a good marriage. how filthy and disgusting these jews are, eh?

        • fool me once... September 20, 2012 at 9:48 pm #

          “there is a real danger in categorising people as either good or evil.”
          Is that at me? I didn’t call anyone evil. My comment was supposed to show the similarities between Milliband and Patton, israel and MAP.
          btw I did read yer “random notes…” article but will have to read it a few more times to grasp what you’re fully saying in it.
          Somehow I don’t think you’ll be alone in heaven 😉

      • Ariadna Theokopoulos September 20, 2012 at 9:00 pm #

        “I want to see Israel, a free, democratic society, live up to its original values and be at peace with its neighbors. ”

        Which would be them ‘original’ ones?

        • David Holden September 20, 2012 at 9:16 pm #

          missed you Ariadna, where u bin?

          • Ariadna Theokopoulos September 21, 2012 at 12:33 am #

            Thanking you kindly for the thought I have been sick with what I have diagnosed as a zionist flu virus which I am still battling but winning.

  5. James September 20, 2012 at 10:39 am #

    It’s now official – there’s been no actual shortage of Holocaust Survivors :

    Quote from The Holocaust Industry by Norman G. Finkelstein of the City University of New York, published by Verso in the year 2000:
    ‘The Israeli Prime Minister’s office recently put the number of “living Holocaust survivors” at nearly a million.’ (page 83)

    I’ve checked out the six volumes of Churchill’s Second World War and the statement is quite correct – not a single mention of Nazi ‘gas chambers,’ a ‘genocide’ of the Jews, or of ‘six million’ Jewish victims of the war.

    Eisenhower’s Crusade in Europe is a book of 559 pages; Churchill’s Second World War totals 4,448 pages; and De Gaulle’s three-volume Mémoires de guerre is 2,054 pages.

    In this mass of writing, which altogether totals 7,061 pages (not including the introductory parts), published from 1948 to 1959, one will find no mention either of Nazi ‘gas chambers,’ a ‘genocide’ of the Jews, or of ‘six million’ Jewish victims of the war.

    CODOH – Committee for Open Debate of the Holocaust – breaking the power of taboo

  6. James September 20, 2012 at 10:41 am #

    The political art of large-number reiterationism:

    Zionist trial runs of “6 Million” Holocaust propaganda in 1911, and also in 1919

    Max Nordau (1849-1923) was the co-founder of the World Zionist Organization together with Theodor Herzl.

    Have a look at this Max Nordau quote from Ben Hecht’s book ‘Perfidy’ – which is available for free in PDF format at (on page 232 of 261):

    In the Zionist Congress of 1911, 22 years before Hitler came to power, and three years before World War I, Nordau said, “How dare the smooth talkers, the clever official blabbers, open their mouths and boast of progress. . . . Here they hold jubilant peace conferences in which they talk against war. . . . But the same righteous Governments, who are so nobly, industriously active to establish the eternal peace, are preparing, by their own confession, complete annihilation for six million people, and there is nobody, except the doomed themselves, to raise his voice in protest although this is a worse crime than any war . . .” unquote.

  7. James September 20, 2012 at 10:46 am #

    And take a look at the article from The American Hebrew, October 31 1919

    (see attached reproduction below), prophesying a ‘holocaust’ of ‘six million’:

    The Crucifixion of Jews Must Stop!
    By Martin H. Glynn
    (Former Governor of the State of N.Y.)

    From across the sea six million men and women call to us for help, and eight hundred thousand little children cry for bread.

    These children, these men and women are our fellow-members of the human family, with the same claim on life as we, the same susceptibility to the winter’s cold, the same propensity to death before the fangs of hunger. Within them reside the illimitable possibilities for the advancement of the human race as naturally would reside in six million human beings. We may not be their keepers but we ought to be their helpers.

    In the face of death, in the throes of starvation there is no place for mental distinctions of creed, no place for physical differentiations of race. In this catastrophe, when six million human beings are being whirled toward the grave by a cruel and relentless fate, only the most idealistic promptings of human nature should sway the heart and move the hand.

    Six million men and women are dying from lack of the necessaries of life; eight hundred thousand children cry for bread. And this fate is upon them through no fault of their own, through no transgression of the laws of God or man; but through the awful tyranny of war and a bigoted lust for Jewish blood.

    In this threatened holocaust of human life.. etc etc

  8. Blake September 21, 2012 at 7:11 pm #

    Palestinian cause is victim of Arab revolts, says David Miliband

    Former foreign secretary expresses alarm at fading prospects for two-state solution to Middle East conflict

    “Leaders across the world must not lose interest,” he warns. “The fact that Palestine is not in the headlines does not mean it can be forgotten. We know there can be no justice in the Middle East without a Palestinian state. But there can be no security in the Middle East without a Palestinian state. The crowds on the streets may not be chanting about Palestine, but they have not given up in their hearts and heads.”