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July 30, 2017 2:50 pm

New Report Exposes Scottish Palestine Solidarity Activists as Purveyors of Holocaust Denial and Antisemitism

avatar by Ben Cohen

A sample of antisemitic social media posts shared by members of SPSC. Image: David Collier / JHRW.

One of Europe’s most notorious pro-Palestinian solidarity groups has been unmasked as a home for Holocaust deniers and other hardcore antisemites, a new report revealed on Sunday.

The report — by British researcher David Collier, in association with advocacy group Jewish Human Rights Watch — is the culmination of two years of research into the activities of the Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign (SPSC), particularly on social media.

“Everywhere the SPSC stands, there is widespread evidence of anti-Semitism,” the report, entitled “Jew Hate and Holocaust Denial in Scotland,” states. “Not an anti-Semitism that is explained away as an exaggerated description of Israel’s activity. Nor an anti-Semitism that has anything to do with opposition to Israeli government policy. It is a hard-core hatred of Jews, anti-Semitic global conspiracy theory and Holocaust denial.”

The report continues: “At every event checked, on every high street, at every demonstration, those pushing hard-core anti-Semitic ideology were at the very front of SPSC activity. Two separate case studies suggested that between 40% and 50% of SPSC front line activists (at a minimum) engage in sharing Jew-hating material.”

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The report systematically traces the echo chamber that SPSC operates across social media platforms like Facebook, which frequently includes comparisons of Israel with Nazi Germany, outright denials of the Holocaust, portraits of Israeli power and influence using the imagery of an all-powerful global Jewish cabal, and the recycling of ugly antisemitic falsehoods about Jewish control of the banking industry, or of the trans-Atlantic slave trade.

One SPSC activist, Steve Davies, was shown in the report in a photo wearing a Palestinian keffiyeh as he stood alongside Scotland’s First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon. Davies has used terms like “Holohoax” to describe the Holocaust, as well as pushing wild conspiracy theories about the Rothschild banking family.

Other posts parrot the constant stream of propaganda from the Iranian regime and its Syrian ally Bashar al Assad about Israel controlling Sunni terrorist groups like Al Qaeda and ISIS.

One key section of the report concentrates specifically on the antics of Mick Napier, a university lecturer who serves as Secretary of SPSC. On July 18, both Napier and his SPSC colleague Jim Watson were found guilty in court of aggressive behavior at a protest outside an Israeli-owned cosmetics store in Glasgow during the 2014 Gaza war. After his conviction, Napier accused those who brought the case forward of trying to “criminalize criticism of Israeli apartheid and Israeli genocide.”

Among the antisemitic individuals hosted by Napier under the SPSC banner are Azzam Tamimi, a Hamas supporter and enthusiastic cheerleader of suicide bombing, and Gilad Atzmon, a former Israeli who now devotes the bulk of his time to penning antisemitic articles and books. Napier is also a devoted supporter of Jackie Walker, a British Labour Party activist suspended for antisemitism who is currently promoting a lecture tour entitled “Lynched” — in which she compares having to defend herself from the charge of antisemitism to the thousands of African Americans beaten and hung by white supremacists in the Jim Crow South.

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