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March 29, 2016 6:40 pm

UK Justice Minister Michael Gove: BDS Is Committing a Crime Worse Than Apartheid (VIDEO)

avatar by Ruthie Blum

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UK Justice Minister Michael Gove. Photo: Screenshot.

UK Justice Minister Michael Gove. Photo: Screenshot.

The British Justice Minister on Monday railed against the BDS movement, calling it the new manifestation of an old hatred that he said “all of us would have thought would have vanished from this earth forever, after the unique crime of the Holocaust.”

Addressing the third annual Algemeiner “Jewish 100 Gala” in New York, UK Secretary of State for Justice Michael Gove, a key honoree of the event, bemoaned the rise of antisemitism in Europe, referring to it as a “virus which mutates.”

“In medieval times, antisemitism was religious, and it found its manifestation in ghettoization and forced conversion,” said Gove, a conservative politician and former journalist. “In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, antisemitism, under the perverted guise of scientific racism, led to eliminationist politics in Austria, in Germany, and the greatest crime that mankind has ever witnessed.”

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But, he asserted, “Antisemitism has changed. And now, it finds its expression in opposition to the Jewish people’s collective identity and the existence of the state of Israel.”

He went on:

Across the world, the new antisemites rally behind the boycott, divestment and sanctions campaign. And the people behind it have the temerity to compare Israel with apartheid South Africa, even though Israel is a country which gives all its citizens — whatever their background, whatever their ethnicity — a vote and a say. A country with Arab politicians in the Knesset and an Arab lawyer on the Supreme Court.

But worse than that – worse than libeling the state of Israel – the BDS campaign, by calling for the deliberate boycott of goods manufactured by Jewish people, by calling for the shunning of the Jewish state, and the rejection of Jewish commerce and Jewish thought, actually commits a crime worse than apartheid. It re-introduces into our world and into our society a prejudice against the Jews collectively that should have vanished from the earth generations ago.

Asking rhetorically why this matters so much to Jews and non-Jews alike, he said, “Because as the chief rabbi of the United Kingdom has pointed out, ‘What starts with the Jews never ends with the Jews.’”

Gove, who began his talk with a quip — “I am a hack politician, who was, before he went down in the world, a journalist” — said he “wanted to salute the efforts of The Algemeiner to tell the truth when the truth is needed more than ever.”

He concluded by declaring, “Any country in which antisemitism is growing is a country that is moving into the dark.”

Watch Gove’s remarks below:

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