The rise and fall of Baroness Jenny Tonge
by Peter Eyre on 19 Feb 2010 1 Comment

A staunch supporter of the Palestinian people was removed from her position as Health spokeswoman for the Liberal Democrats in the House of Lords, a clear sign of the political power that the pro-Israeli Lobby has over all political parties. This does not stop here in the UK but extends throughout the US and the EU. So what caused such a dramatic response from the Lib Dems?


Jenny has been fighting all political parties for some time, especially those who appear to pay more attention to their election campaign funds than keeping a moral and ethical stance in Parliament. They appear to protect those that financially prop them up in return for support or favour of anything that aids the pro-Israeli cause. The Friends of Israel are not a group to be taken lightly and should you cross swords with them you can expect repercussions, as Jenny has found out.


Some time ago, I wrote about who controls the power of politics in the west; I was shocked to see the amounts of money involved in this devious manipulation of our so called democratic political system. Let’s briefly look at the sinister game of “I’ll scratch your back if you scratch mine.” Look at the three main political parties and see how it all comes together in order for potential candidates to gain a seat in the House of Commons or House of Lords. All parties have a specific organisation that protects them financially and at the same time promotes good PR for Israel. If one reads the speeches made, it is easy to see that Israel can get away with brutal executions or mass killings as long as sufficient donations cover candidates’ election costs.


The Conservative Friends of Israel (CFI) comprise around 80% of all Conservative MPs who provide money for their respective election campaigns which obviously comes with pre-conditions! One can understand what when Rt Hon David Cameron, MP, Leader of the Conservative Party, says at the Conservative Party Conference on 3 October 2006:

“The Conservative Party is a true friend of Israel because we look at Israel and we see a democracy, we see a democracy that has a right to exist and a right to defend itself and that is a force for good in the world, and I want to say that as clearly as I possibly can.”  


David Cameron appeared before the CFI lunch some months after Cast Lead and said nothing to denounce the actions of the Israeli Government; in fact said “Israel strives to protect innocent life,” and “If I become Prime Minister, Israel will have a friend who will never turn his back on Israel.”


The Ambassador of Israel, HE Zvi Heifetz, who attended a conference once said: “I know from experience that I can rely on the members of CFI to put Israel’s case... The Conservative Party has long been the home of some of Israel’s most outstanding advocates. For that you have my deep appreciation and my thanks.”


The following headline appeared in the CFI weekly briefing on 22 October 2009: “Conservatives back rejection of UN Resolution on Goldstone Report.” No doubt this attracted more funds for the upcoming elections in 2010!


Let’s now look at the Labour Friends of Israel (LFI). Their website says: LFI seeks to promote a strong bilateral relationship between Britain and Israel. We work with the Government, Parliamentarians, advisers, and activists throughout the Labour movement. LFI also strengthens the bond between the British and Israeli Labour parties, organising meetings in both countries between senior figures, officials and the grassroots. “We are fundamentally sympathetic to Israel’s position as a liberal democracy facing constant security dilemmas and existential threats.”


It is clear that both the CFI and the LFI both benefit from huge donations whilst at the same time having the ability to respond in the right way to the donors. What is incredible about the political scene in Britain and the US is that if you say the ‘wrong’ thing, your wallet will suffer with the possibility of being removed from office by those who hold the power. In that sense the entire system is corrupt. Ironic that Obama, Brown, Cameron and Clegg were critical of the Afghanistan Government for corruption.


All parties benefit from this relationship… they are flown to Israel on a regular basis and live a life embarrassing to most of us. They leave behind their ethical duties as MP’s and continue to support Israel.


The Liberal Democrats have bitterly attacked Jenny Tonge on other occasions; let’s look at their relationship with Israel. The LDFI main objectives are:


1)      To maximise support for the State of Israel within the Liberal Democrats and Parliament.

2)     To develop a relationship of mutual trust and respect between the Liberal Democrats and the Jewish Community.

3)     To support and promote policies which lead to peace and security for Israel in the context of a comprehensive and lasting Middle East [Gulf] peace settlement.

4)     To encourage a broad understanding of Israel’s unique political position as the only democracy in the Middle East.


And its aims:

1)      To influence the party’s Middle East policy so it places a high priority on Israel’s right to peace and security.

2)     To ensure Liberal Democrat parliamentarians are aware of the up-to-date situation in the Middle East.

3)     To provide parliamentarians with briefing material for parliamentary debates, questions to Ministers and public appearances.

4)     To rebut attacks on Israel in the media, Parliament and the Party.

5)     To liaise with Israeli politicians and Government.

6)     To maintain a dialogue with other parliamentary groups having an interest in the Middle East.

7)     To ensure that the British Jewish Community are aware of the activities of LDFI

8)     To develop and maintain a broad based LDFI membership inside and outside of Parliament.

9)     To arrange and accompany LDFI delegations to Israel.

10) To organise fringe events at Party conferences

11) To keep in regular contact with the Embassy of Israel.


This corrupt system is firmly embedded in the politics at Westminster and huge sums of money exchange hands, especially as we near a new election in May/June. One can see all these political figures running around the pro-Israeli Lobby Groups to earn “Brownie Points.”


Back in 2006, we saw Jenny Tonge highlight this very fact at a Lib Dem Conference: “The pro-Israeli lobby has got its grips on the western world, its financial grips. I think they have probably got a certain grip on our party.” The Liberal Democrat Friends of Israel leapt on the remarks; Ming Campbell said, “I have acted with the maximum powers at my disposal at this time. I have written to Baroness Tonge dissociating myself and the party from her deeply offensive remarks and what I believe to be their clear anti-Semitic connotations. I have asked for a review of the disciplinary powers available to the Liberal Democrat leaders in both the House of Lords and Commons.”


Currently, Jenny got herself into deep water in relation to allegations made by the media that the Israelis had been taking organs whilst in Haiti [a charge levelled by Black rights activist T. West of AfriSynergy Productions, and American researcher Stephen Lendman]. Normally, anyone accused of such allegations over time would dispel them by seeking an enquiry; that is what Jenny tried to point out to the Jewish Chronicle: “To prevent allegations such as these - which have already been posted on You Tube - going any further, the IDF and the Israeli Medical Association should establish an independent inquiry immediately to clear the names of the team in Haiti.”


Party leader Nick Clegg said: “The comments were wrong, distasteful and provocative… While I do not believe that Jenny Tonge is anti-Semitic or racist, I regard her comments as wholly unacceptable…”


This is not the first time Baroness Tonge has been dismissed from a party post. As an MP in 2004, then Lib Dem leader Charles Kennedy asked her to quit as children’s spokeswoman following remarks she made about Palestinian suicide bombers. She told a pro-Palestinian lobby group: “If I had to live in that situation - and I say that advisedly - I might just consider becoming one myself.” She retired as an MP after the incident, but entered the House of Lords.


Baroness Jenny Tonge is a highly moral and ethical lady and a true friend of Palestine. She now has made the eternal sacrifice in speaking from her heart whilst all other senior political figures grovel around for pro-Israeli funds to prop up their election campaign.


Peter Eyre, a former British Naval officer, worked at NATO headquarters and spent a lot of time in the Middle East and South East Asia as a petroleum consultant; he lives in the UK and writes regularly for the Palestine Telegraph

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