A perverse and controversial attempt at a partnership is being made between Oxfam in the UK and the Jewish Board of Deputies (BoD) there for a joint enterprise, the Grow-Tatzmiach Project. It is beset with difficulties, the reasons for them will become clear below, but particularly intriguing is the fact that we are only just being informed about it. The BoD has been in discussion with Oxfam since 2008.
The BoD is an elected body which comprises representatives from most, but not all, synagogues in the UK. It has placed conditions upon this mismatched and ill-favoured collaboration to which Oxfam has allegedly agreed, but nevertheless the notion of a partnership between Jews and an entity which works closely with Islamist partners has occasioned a backlash from members of the Board who argue that any collaboration with Oxfam are tantamount to supporting its anti-Israel/anitsemitic stance. A meeting, called for 20th January 2013, will give those Board members the chance to put their points of view, including about the so-called “red lines” put in place by the BoD about the collaboration. These are not set out in detail, however. Many might believe that they are superfluous because the partnership should not go ahead.
It is hardly surprising that any Jewish liaison with Oxfam should give rise to suspicion, although a British Oxfam spokesman confirmed that Oxfam has pledged not to call for a boycott of Israeli goods or to support groups that do so, and will not partner with organizations that advocate violence or oppose a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Many are sceptical, however, of Oxfam’s capability to do that. Oxfam itself describes many of these relations as “partnerships”. It partnered with Islamic Relief and Human Appeal and Muslim Brotherhood-linked group MADE to produce a ‘campaigns toolkit’ (see below). Both Islamic Relief and Human Appeal have been accused by a number of Governments of being “terrorist fronts”. Further, Islamic Relief’s President, Essam al-Haddad, was the campaign manager for Egyptian President Morsi, who recently described Jews as the “descendents of apes and pigs”. Oxfam’s relations with these groups goes beyond sharing the occasional platform; it includes running joint events and affirming support for each other.
One such is MADE in Europe (MUSLIM AGENCY FOR DEVELOPMENT EDUCATION), mentioned above, a charity which claims its “aim is to mobilise young Muslims to take a leadership role in combating global poverty and injustice through campaigning, volunteering and education.” All very nice on the surface, but its board members and staff, however, are linked to a number of extremist Muslim Brotherhood and Jamaat-el-Islaami groups.
Since 2012, MADE has been working with Oxfam on a project called the “Ultimate Campaign Toolkit.” MADE’s offices are on the fourth floor of the London Muslim Centre, an extremist institution linked to the East London Mosque (as detailed below). In 2011, MADE received £82,500 from Islamic Help, a charity accused of ties to Hamas. The charity took part in George Galloway’s convoy to Gaza, which ended in a rally celebrating Hamas.
In Gaza, Islamic Help backed the reconstruction of Darul Fadilah, a facility in Rafah owned by the Islamic Society of Gaza. Mohammad Masood Alam Khan, Islamic Help’s chairman, has visited the facility, with George Galloway. The Islamic Society of Gaza is closely linked to Hamas. Ahmad Bahr, a Hamas leader, was its secretary general from 1985 to 2004. At a mosque in Sudan in 2007, Bahr said:
“Oh Allah, vanquish the Jews and their supporters. Oh Allah, count their numbers, and kill them all, down to the very last one. Oh Allah, show them a day of darkness. Oh Allah, who sent down His Book, the mover of the clouds, who defeated the enemies of the Prophet, defeat the Jews and the Americans, and bring us victory over them.”
Also among Oxfam’s partners is the Palestine Solidarity Campaign, (PSC) an anti-Israel lobbying group. The BoD has stated the PSC’s views include “racist conspiracy theories, the propagation of antisemitic stereotypes and Holocaust denial”. Oxfam speakers regularly address PSC meetings and Oxfam has also co-sponsored a number of events with the PSC. The BBC describes the PSC as a ‘radical’ organisation noted for its support of terrorist groups Hamas and Hezbollah. Its branches are riddled with Jew-hatred and holocaust denial:
Sammi Ibrahem was chair of the West Midlands PSC, and runs an anti-Jewish website called Shoah.org.uk. Ibrahem is not a Holocaust denier; rather, and far more shockingly, he actually supports the Nazi attempt to eradicate the Jewish people. Ibrahem has voiced his admiration for the Nazi regime and poured scorn on Jewish holocaust victims. He lamented the trials of Nazi war criminals at Nuremberg:
“I bow my head in reverence to those who were judicially murdered at Nuremberg. They were the world’s martyrs, not villains. Not one of them would have been condemned to death in a fair trial – not one! They sacrificed an entire nation, and in the end themselves, to save Western civilization. They were defeated by thugs in robes and gangsters in uniform – and by the conspiracies hatched by shysters from the ghettos of Eastern Europe.”
Another of Oxfam’s listed partners is Muslim Aid. Muslim Aid’s own accounts show that it paid £325,000 to the Islamic University of Gaza, where leading Hamas figures teach; and £13,998 to the al-Ihsan Charitable Society, designated by the US government as a “sponsor of terrorism” and a front for the Palestinian Islamic Jihad terrorist group. Security sources also claim that Muslim Aid has helped channel a further £210,600 to six other organisations in the Gaza Strip since July 2009, all of which they say are also linked to Hamas.
Oxfam has partnered with the East London Mosque on a number of occasions. In May 2012, Oxfam sponsored a Palestinian children’s art show held at mosque, in which the drawings explain what life was like “under occupation”. In June 2012, Oxfam partnered with the London Muslim Centre to organise a conference which sought to “find tangible ways of working together for the future.” Both the East London Mosque and the London Muslim centre are known as platforms for extremist and pro-terror hate preachers who have encouraged violence against Jews, women and homosexuals.
Among recent speakers at the East London Mosque have been:
Muhammed Al-Arifi, a Saudi theologian invited by the London Muslim Centre to address its conferences. Al-Arifi endorses violent Jihad.
Abdul-Rahman Al-Barrak, another Saudi preacher. According to Al-Barrak, gender mixing is so terrible that those who encourage it must be killed.
Saad Al Beraik, another extremist who calls for the enslavement of Jewish women, thus:
“Muslim Brothers in Palestine, do not have any mercy neither compassion on the Jews, their blood, their money, their flesh. Their women are yours to take, legitimately. God made them yours. Why don’t you enslave their women? Why don’t you wage jihad? Why don’t you pillage them?”
In 2011, Oxfam partnered with Islamic Relief, an Islamist charity accused of strong ties to anti-Jewish terror groups. In November 2012, Islamic Relief had its account closed and donations to its account blocked by Swiss bank UBS due to “counter-terror concerns”.
Oxfam has partnered with the Federation of Student Islamic Societies (FOSIS) on a number of occasions, including for the launch of campaign toolkits, the “Trade Justice” campaign and speaker events. The UK government professes concern about the radicalisation of Muslim students but FOSIS is a radical student organisation with a long history of providing a platform for antisemitic and pro-terror hate preachers. Over the last four years, speakers at FOSIS events have included:
Haitham Al-Haddad, who has said that Jews are “apes and pigs”, and that the Gaza war made him happy because “it clearly encouraged Muslims to prepare themselves for jihad, all over the world”.
Muhammad Alshareef, who has said Jews should be hated and shunned. As for homosexuals, he says that Muslims should be “proud” to be called homophobic and need to harass gay rights demonstrators.
All in all these are dangerous and egregious bedfellows for an organisation which purports to be the voice of British Jewry. It is said that when one sups with the devil one must needs use a long spoon, but nowhere is it written, nor should it be taken for granted, that the Jewish BoD should collaborate with an organisation which so blatantly lends support to Jew-haters and those who incite the murder of Jews.
The big question is, of course, whether Oxfam will sever all ties with its partners so completely as to comply with the BoD’s “red lines.” Only naives and others who are ignorant of the agenda of Islam would believe so. Oxfam may not be capable of doing so. We should not forget that these discussions have been going on since 2008 and Oxfam is still partnered with Islamist-supporting charities.