It seems Ger Francis– a former SWP member and now an operative in Salma Yaqoob’s Respect campaign for MP from Birmingham– has taken to calling Jim Denham and other denizens of the Shiraz Socialist blog “Orange Zionists.”
As I understand Denham’s position, he is highly critical of Israel but supports its right to exist, along with a Palestinian state. Is there something particularly orange (as opposed to beige, fuchsia, or mauve) about that? Or does it have something to do with Northern Ireland Protestants?
There was an Orange Zionist Society in Orange, New Jersey, but I’m guessing this is not what Ger Francis was referring to.
Update: In 2006 Yvonne Ridley, a member of the Respect party’s national council, said: “[Respect] is a Zionist-free party… if there was any Zionism [sic] in the Respect Party they would be hunted down and kicked out. We have no time for Zionists.” As far as I know, none of her fellow Respect-ers ever contradicted or repudiated this position.
So does that mean that Salma Yaqoob, George Galloway and other Respect candidates want no support from anyone who believes Israel has a right to exist (Ger Francis’s apparent definition of a Zionist)? The voters have a right to know.
Further update: resistor comments at Shiraz Socialist:
‘Orange Zionism’ refers to the politics of the [Alliance for Workers’ Liberty]. Shorthand for their support for sectarian states like Northern Ireland and Israel.