Channel 4 – Dispatches – Israel Lobby in the UK

19 Nov

According to Peter Oborne and James Jones who made this documentary for channel 4, the influence of the pro- Israel lobby is significant in the UK. For example,during the production of this film,

… Many people who privately voiced concerns about the influence of the lobby simply felt they had too much to lose by confronting it. One national newspaper editor told us, “that’s one lobby I’ve never dared to take on.” From MPs, to senior BBC journalists and representatives of Britain’s largest charities, the pattern became depressingly familiar. Material would come flooding out on the phone or in a meeting, but then days later an email would arrive to say that they would not be able to take part. Either after consultation with colleagues or consideration of the potential consequences, people pulled out…

The power of the lobby has even extended to MPs who felt threatened to voice any doubts on Israel’s OPT policies:

… It was only senior MPs whose careers are winding down that felt able to voice what many MPs told us in private. One of them, Michael Mates, a member of the Intelligence and Security Committee and former Northern Ireland minister, told us on the record that “the pro-Israel lobby in our body politic is the most powerful political lobby. There’s nothing to touch them.” Mates added: “I think their lobbying is done very discreetly, in very high places, which may be why it is so effective.”..

Read the pamphlet html text from Open Democracy on the makings of this film.

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