James Francken

At the end of September, the Theatre Royal in London staged a ‘solidarity rally’ for British Jews. The Chief Rabbi, Jonathan Sacks, scolded the press for blaming the events of 11 September on Israel. Would they, he asked, like to live in ‘Gaza under the Palestinian Authority, Afghanistan under the Taliban, Iraq under Saddam Hussein, Iran or Libya or Syria’? Or would they ‘prefer the Israel they condemn’? Sacks alone was allowed to reply. Israel, he said, is ‘open, free, liberal, democratic’ – which is why it is the ‘ultimate threat to those who seek to create closed, repressive societies’.

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