Following Ming Campbell's anti-Israeli comments on the Today Programme this morning (see Stephen Pollard) this week's Liberal Democrat News has published a letter which refers to Hamas fighters with the words "What courage, what determination!" and says that "Israelis are terrorists". While this is the view of only one member, the party has given it credence by publishing it in its weekly publication. The author, Paul Corney, is a senior LibDem in Norfolk. In fact I think I'm right in saying that he was Norman Lamb's agent at one time (but I stand to be corrected). I was at university with Mr Corney's son. This is the text of the letter...
Every comment I have read or heard refers to the "kidnapping" by Hamas of an Israeli soldier. No way was he kidnapped. He was captured by a small group of lightly armed irregular soldiers who tunnelled 300 yards under the frontier of the most security-conscious country in the world to penetrate a military base equipped with all sorts of heavy weaponry. Once there, they damaged a tank and another armoured vehicle, killed two of the tank crew and took prisoner a third, escaping with him through their home-made tunnel. What courage, what determination! I wonder what Hollywood would make of that! How many medals would we award, if the men had been ours? The shameful Israeli response has been to unleash all the resources of American military technology on the helpless citizens of the Gaza strip, quite deliberately destroying the infrastructure of that unhappy territory, and making the lives of its people virtually unliveable, and not for the first time. Now they follow up by doing exactly the same to Lebanon, targeting Hizbollah, Christians and civilians without any discrimination. The president of Lebanon has referred to the Israelis as terrorists. He is right.
Deluded. Are there any LibDems who are pro-Israeli? If so, they're staying very quiet.
UPDATE: Mark P in the Comments section tells me there was a pro-Israel letter on the same letters page. Happy to make that clear - sadly I don't actually see LibDem News each week as I gather only LibDem members can subscribe. I have its contents reported to me, obviously with varying degrees of accuracy!
UPDATE: I have now successfully subscribed to LibDem News without having to give a membership number. I am sure everyone will bve delighted that I can now give first hand reports without having to rely on others to tell me what's in it. I do hope my £30 subscription fee will go some way towards paying back the £2.4 million!