– Israel claims SWP have no moral credibility
– UCD SWP refuse to back down
The Embassy of Israel in Ireland has condemned the UCD Socialists Workers Party (UCD SWP) for their stance on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Freddie Hoskin, Auditor of UCD SWP, has stated that, “We don’t believe, philosophically, that the Israeli state should exist.”
In response to this, Derek O’Flynn, press officer for the Embassy of Israel, says, “Mr. Hoskin is an adherent of an ideology that murdered a hundred million people in the 20th century, so he has no credibility taking a supposedly moral stance on this or any other issue.”
UCD SWP have long been opposed to the Israeli state, instead promoting a single Palestinian state in the area, a view that reflects the views of the SWP on a national level.
Speaking to the University Observer, Richard Boyd-Barrett, a TD for Dún Laoghaire who has close ties to the SWP, called the statement from the Israeli Embassy “truly despicable, dishonest and, frankly, slanderous.”
Boyd-Barrett, a member of the People Before Profit/United Left Alliance, went on to say, “It is stock-in-trade for the Israeli Embassy to make such disgraceful allegations. They know how dishonest such allegations are.”
Hoskin claims, and Boyd-Barrett agrees, that the best solution to the conflict would be a single state, a solution that O’Flynn believes “would be a catastrophe… and the likely outcome would be another genocide of the Jewish people.”
He also claims that “what [Hoskin] says betrays a total ignorance of Zionism and the history of the Middle East… He is wrong to say Judaism is merely a religion; it is also a national identity.”
This is not the first time that UCD SWP have upset the Israeli Embassy, as they have been known to host ‘die-ins’ outside the embassy on Pembroke Street to protest the occupation of what they see as Palestine.
Hoskin explains that “It’s simply the view that the area is Palestine, not Israel, and it’s the Palestinians who have a right to the area.”
In response to this, O’Flynn calls Judaism more than a religion, saying it is “a national identity” of the Jewish people, a claim with which Boyd-Barrett takes exception.
“For them to equate Judaism with Zionism, which is a political philosophy that was developed in the late 19th century, is, again, utterly dishonest. The Israeli Embassy are well-aware that there are many, many Jewish people around the world who oppose the Israeli state.”
Both he and Hoskin are keen to dispute any claims of anti-Semitism, with Boyd-Barrett accusing Israel of hiding behind such claims as “a way of justifying the apartheid policies of the Israeli state.”
Additional reporting by Declan Moran