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Muslim Council of Britain Boycotts Holocaust Memorial Day Again

Well, they kept quiet about it. And they boycott was only reported in the Guardian as far as I can see. They haven’t even got the guts to announce it on their own webside. But they did it, again: The … Read More

By / January 26, 2009

Well, they kept quiet about it. And they boycott was only reported in the Guardian as far as I can see. They haven’t even got the guts to announce it on their own webside.

But they did it, again:

The Muslim Council of Britain boycotted yesterday’s national Holocaust Memorial Day commemoration in protest at the Israeli offensive in Gaza this month. The decision not to send representatives from the umbrella body, which represents 500 Muslim organisations in Britain, was made at an MCB committee meeting last week. The committee overwhelmingly ruled out attendance at events marking the Holocaust due to take place over the next few days, but the decision has not been officially announced. The MCB believes that the memorial day will be used to “silence criticism of Israel”.

The Muslim Council of Britain was never happy with HMD. The only reason they ever attended in the first place, was that the Government had refused to engage with them, unless they did.

But things change so quickly. Sympathetic ministers have gradually been including MCB representatives in more and more discussions and consultation processes. Government ministers spoke alongside MCB activists, Holocaust deniers, and supporters of terrorism at the Global Peace and Unity Event.

So I’m really not surprised that the MCB felt happy to re-instate their boycott so quickly. They’ve got everything they want, and there’s no reason for them to keep up the pretense.

This year, the reason for the boycott is Gaza. Don’t bother yourself trying to work out what the commemoration of the slaughter of six million European Jews has to do with that. Every year, the MCB has a new excuse to boycott the event. Back in 2001 it was that:

“It includes the controversial question of alleged Armenian genocide as well as the so-called gay genocide.”

I suspect that the MCB committee is torn between those who see HMD as a day of solemn reflection on the tragic failure of Hitler to exterminate all the world’s Jews, and those who would like to sing, dance, and hand out sweet pastries to celebrate their joy at the partial success of the endeavour.

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