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‘I want to cut your throat’: Galloway beaten by pro-Israeli fanatic for Gaza views

Published time: September 01, 2014 23:55

Respect Party candidate George Galloway (Reuters / Darren Staples)

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In his first TV interview after release from hospital, British MP George Galloway told RT he is surprised by the lack of condemnation from other UK politicians of the brutal attack on him. The assault by a pro-Israeli man left Galloway in much pain.

Galloway, 60, was brutally beaten in Notting Hill, London last Friday allegedly for his views on the conflict in Gaza.

“It’s very painful to walk, to move, even to speak because I sustained a dislocated jaw, quite bad head injuries, and very badly cracked ribs,” he said.

He said the attack occurred during broad daylight, when he was in the street around 19:30.

“Unlucky for me, there weren’t many people around. Though, luckily for me as it turned out none of my small children were there to witness what happened next,” he said. “I was posing for a picture with two Moroccan gentlemen who have a business in the street. And whilst I was posing for that picture, out of nowhere – dressed in an Israeli Defense Force shirt, complete with logo – came a man charging at me, cursing and swearing and shouting support for Israel and opposition to my views on Israel. Then a torrent of punches and kicks [followed] – which is admitted in court today though he has pled not guilty to the charge that it was religiously aggravated.”

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Following a hearing, the case has been passed on to a higher court. “In any case, the Judge has referred it to much higher court because his sentencing parole was not sufficient. The man has been denied bail, so he will spend some weeks in prison before this matter comes back to court.”

Galloway described the attacker as “a pro-Israel fanatic.” “His Facebook that morning contained his words that he would like to cut my throat. A man who says he’d like to cut your throat and then dresses for the occasion in an Israel Defense Force t-shirt and ends up on the street near where you live, has probably a serious intention to do you harm.”

“It’s unprecedented in recent times. Britain is not really the kind of country where lawmakers, legislators, MPs are savagely attacked in this way – certainly not when they are six times elected, 27 years in parliament and having just turned 60.”

‘If this can happen to Galloway, it can happen to anybody’

The incident has largely been ignored by UK’s senior politicians.

Peter Oborne, a Conservative writer for the Conservative daily The Telegraph asked in his article on Monday why no senior politicians had condemned the assault on Galloway, the MP noted.

“It seems very strange. They are always telling us how much they hate violence and terrorism, how much they believe in the rule of law, free speech and democracy. But when it came to the attack on me their lips were sealed. This conservative columnist was making a point which is obvious: if this can happen to Galloway, it can happen to anybody.”

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Known for his harsh anti-Israeli stance, in early August Galloway went as far as to declare his constituency an “Israel-free zone.” The MP urged people not to buy Israeli goods or services and even to reject tourists.

Galloway pointed out that he separates the people from the regime. “Israel has nothing to do with Judaism. Many Jews are against what Israel is doing and most of the people supporting what Israel is doing are not Jews,” he said.

“The word Jew never crossed my lips, would never cross my lips. I don’t have a racist bone in my body. Soviet Union was a political construct, apartheid South Africa was a political construct, the Zionist apartheid state of Israel is a political construct. It has nothing to do with hating people, still less hating a religion.”

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Palestinian people have moral legal and moral right to resist Israeli occupation, he added.

“Palestinian resistance has for almost 70 years been trying to restore their country to the map. It was wiped off the map and the Palestinian people scattered to the four corners of the Earth. Nobody would accept that. If foreigners come and steal your country, wipe it off the map and take your house and drive you out, you are going to struggle to return.”

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