The Long and Short of Friendship with Israel
I am something of the short girl’s shortie. My ol’ man loves to quip variously: “It’s better to have loved a short girl than never to have loved at all.” Or – punning on the traditional Anglo-Jewish expression of condolence - “I wish you long legs.”
One day m’ laddo will find the length of his jokes list is severely depleted! But meanwhile, despite enjoying the fun surrounding U.K. Commons Speaker Mr. John Bercow, we both feel a mite sorry for him.
A former right-winger who has turned sharply left, Bercow is not popular among Conservative MPs as, according to newspaper reports: "the Buckingham MP, once a hard-line right-winger, began his move across the political spectrum after realizing he would only get the Speaker’s job with Labour support …”
So many of them, including Prime Minister David Cameron, take every opportunity to mock him, and most recently Cameron has joked about his lack of inches, even comparing him to one of Snow White’s Seven Dwarfs.
This may or may not be funny, depending on your sense of humor, but it reminded me immediately of the equally juvenile and slightly offensive remarks made by George Osborne, Chancellor of the Exchequer when he addressed the Board of Deputies of British Jews’ 250th anniversary dinner.
One of my Facebook chums insists that “the speech was very well received by those in the room. I think the jokes were just fine, and the sentiments expressed seemed heartfelt and apt ... “
However, leading pro-Israel commentator, Melanie Phillips has echoed my views with almost uncanny accuracy in her on-line post in today’s Spectator Magazine.
I wrote last night:
“Sorry, I don't like this at all. A speech beginning with snide references to Jewish materialism; a silly joke about the two immediate past Prime Ministers and a load of waffly nothingness about the contribution of Jewish people to the community mixed with memories of de rigeur visits to - I think it was Dachau - and Israel. I suggest Mr. Osborne could do with a new script writer ...”Continued on the next page