The problem I face is that neither motion adequately reflects my considered view on what needs to be done to resolve this very important issue. The original motion makes no demand on Hamas to give up its rocket attacks on Israel and to accept Israel's right to exist, while the amendment offers no sense of urgency or of the injustice being experience by Palestinian people.
By affirming without ambiguity that both Israelis and Palestinians have equal rights to statehood, international recognition of the State of Palestine can help break this impasse. That is why another amendment tabled by Jack Straw and other senior MPs makes clear that by voting for recognition today MPs will contribute to securing a negotiated two state solution.
It is significant that the Labour leadership backs the motion in Parliament on Monday. Hopefully many Conservative politicians will join them so that the motion is passed with the handsome majority that such a mild measure requires. If the British Parliament votes in favour it would be highly important symbolically, a strong expression of Parliamentary support for recognition...
My support of the petition has been attacked as anti Semitic. I understand anti Semitism to be a hatred of Jews, the denial of the right for Jews to have a homeland, the denial of the horrors of the last century and the plight of the Jewish people throughout history. This is obviously not my position, anti Semitism, Islamaphobia and homophobia are all prejudices that I resolutely reject, like any right-minded person. In the context of the accusation that I face, anti Semitism must be taken to mean opposing big businesses making profit from violence against Palestinian people.
It is with great disappointment to note that the National Union of Students' Executive Council voted to join the call demanding sanctions against the State of Israel. If anyone stands for the welfare of all students on campus, they should condemn this petty and divisive action in the strongest terms.