by Melanie Phillips
Remember Judge Bathurst Norman, who summed up for the jury that went on to acquit the seven defendants who had attacked a Brighton factory that sold armaments to
'you may well think that hell on earth would not be an understatement of what the Gazans suffered in that time'.
Well, Jonathan Hoffman has obtained the 87-page transcript of that summing up – and it's far, far more extraordinary and appalling even than the remark above suggested. Here is a flavour of what he has posted up from it on the Cifwatch blog, with his own gloss (the judge's comments are set here in bold type):
were prepared to stand up for what they believe to be right, and sometimes, as in the case of the suffragettes, even to go to prison for their beliefs. As Edmund Burke says: "For injustice to flourish, all that is needed is for good men to do nothing." Indeed, people like Mr Osmond [Christopher Osmond, the leader of the seven who admitted causing £187,000 of damage to the
... Page 67: He [Osmond] knew of the Philadelphi corridor, the corridor made around the boundaries of Gaza by the illegal demolition of Palestinian homes by the Israeli army, during which Rachel Corrie, one of the International Solidarity Volunteers bravely stood in front of a bulldozer which was being driven by an Israeli soldier and was effectively murdered when he drove the bulldozer over her in 2003.
Now for the truth. Corrie was not "murdered". The IDF investigation concluded that the driver of the bulldozer could not see her and that her death was an unfortunate accident. The IDF Judge Advocate's Office concluded:
The driver at no point saw or heard Corrie. She was standing behind debris which obstructed the view of the driver and the driver had a very limited field of vision due to the protective cage he was working in.
An autopsy revealed that the bulldozer never rolled over Corrie: she was killed when debris dislodged by the bulldozer struck her head.
Page 14: I am going to start with the background relating to Israel and Palestine and to the evidence which points to the war crimes being committed by Israel in Gaza, an area over which Israel has imposed a blockade. The evidence shows that those war crimes are committed against the civilian population of
This is pure demonisation of
Page 14: Now you have to look at the evidence coldly and dispassionately. It may be as you went through what I can only describe as horrific scenes, scenes of devastation to civilian population, scenes which one would rather have hoped to have disappeared with the Nazi regimes of the last war, you may have felt anger and been absolutely appalled by them, but you must put that emotion aside.
Good grief. The judge even compared the Israelis to the Nazis – all because they defended themselves against attack by the direct heirs to those who were actually in alliance with the Nazis in pursuit of the annihilation of the Jews during World War Two. This is of course the most offensive and grotesque collective libel, which demonises
When this kind of rank bigotry flows from rogue politicians or far-left journalists or academics, that's bad enough. But for a judge to abuse the task of summing up evidence to a jury by turning it into a platform for his own personal prejudice is startling even by the standards of
This was a summing-up for a legal lynching. If the senior judiciary does not institute action against this judge for such a gross abuse of his position, we shall have to conclude that they too see nothing wrong with it -- and thus have abandoned all claim to objectivity, fairness or due process in the justice system. We shall have to conclude that, for the English judiciary, there is now one law for the gentiles and another law for the Jews.
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