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I fail to understand why Ken Livingstone should be asked to apologise for stating facts

13 April, 2017

• HAVING grandparents who perished in the Holocaust, I fail to understand why Ken Livingstone should be asked to apologise for citing truthful facts regarding evident collaboration between the Nazis and Zionist leaders of the wartime Jewish community in Europe.

Those facts are fully documented by Jewish historians and the Jewish archive

As a young teenager in Israel I clearly remember the Jerusalem trial of Rudolf Kastner –a well-known Zionist leader of the Hungarian Jewish community – who was charged by the Israeli state for collaborating with the Nazis on the transfer of several hundred Jews to Israel.

Kastner was assassinated by a Holocaust survivor soon after his trial, in which the High Court Judge – Benjamin Halevy – who presided over the trial ruled that: “Kastner’s collaboration had crucially aided the Nazis in murdering 450,000 Jews and, after the war, he further compounded his offence by going to the defence of Becher [a Nazi officer]… The Nazis’ patronage of Kastner, and their agreement to let him save 600 prominent Jews, were part of the plan to exterminate the Jews.

“Kastner was given a chance to add a few more to that number. The bait attracted him. The opportunity of rescuing prominent people appealed to him greatly. He considered the rescue of the most important Jews as a great personal success, and a success for Zionism”.

Regrettably it is not Ken Livingstone’s comments which, allegedly, discredited the concept of Zionism. It is rather the state of Israel and its successive governments who have brought disrepute on Zionism by disinheriting the Palestinians of their homeland, their basic human rights, and of their inalienable right for nationhood and sovereign statehood.

Goldhurst Terrace, NW6


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