Israel’s supporters came out in Trafalgar Square today to show sympathy with Israel as rockets continue to rain down from Gaza and to wish a happy 25th birthday to Gilad Schalit who is in his sixth year in isolation in Gaza having been kidnapped by Hamas from Israeli soil when he was 19.Read the whole thing; he has videos too.
There were some tremendous speeches.
Hasan Afzal, of British Muslims for Israel, said he supports Israel because it is “the only country in the Middle East where Muslims have freedom and democracy”.
Jonathan Sacerdoti spoke movingly about Gilad Schalit spending his 25th birthday “in prison, in Gaza with no contact with the outside world, his family or even the International Red Cross to ensure that his health is adequate”.
Joy Wolfe urged the crowd to ignore media lies about Israel and described Israel as a home for people of all religions.
She went on to call for an end to the double standards of the United Nations and some British MPs and said that Gilad Schalit probably doesn’t even know that today is his birthday and probably feels as if he has been forgotten. But she said that no one will rest until the Red Cross gets access to him and every government in the world is calling for his release.
It was an excellent afternoon arranged at very short notice by the British Israel Coalition and supported by Stand With Us.
It made a change from the previous Sunday’s terror rally at Trafalgar Square where the rhetoric called for war with Israel and signs called for Death to Israel. It’s a shame there wasn’t a similar pro-Israel rally at that time.
The demonstration had some 500 people. I received this photo of the rally which shows one of my posters (click to enlarge):
Here's the poster:
Photo credit goes to StandWithUs UK official photographer Adrian Korsner Photography. H/t CiFWatch for letting me know.