Minister faces sack over secret Israeli meetings

Priti Patel with leading pro-Israel lobbyist Sir Stuart Polak (right) during her visit to Israel in August

Priti Patel – the minister in charge of Britain’s overseas aid budget as Secretary of State for International Development – is expected to be sacked within hours after attempting to deceive journalists about a series of secret meetings with Israeli ministers and officials, including Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Some of these meetings involved plans to pay Britain’s overseas aid via the Israeli army.

Ms Patel breached diplomatic protocol by visiting Israeli occupied territory on the Golan Heights as a guest of the government. Britain and most other countries do not officially recognised Israeli control of the Golan, and Ms Patel compounded her offence by suggesting on her return to Britain that our government should provide funds for the Israeli field hospital in the occupied territory.

Former British ambassador Sir Christopher Meyer expressed the astonishment of the diplomatic community:
“What did she think she was doing? Incomprehensibly daft.”

It seems that Ms Patel believed both that she herself was untouchable, as the daughter of Ugandan Asian immigrants and a valuable symbol for her pro-Brexit, neo-Thatcherite wing of the Tory party, and that she was effectively representing the Prime Minister’s pro-Israel instincts, against the more evenhanded approach of the Foreign Office.

Stephen Pollard of the Jewish Chronicle has an exclusive story this morning stating that Ms Patel’s ultimate offence – not revealing two of her secret meetings even in her latest press statement after the scandal broke – was actually sanctioned by the Prime Minister’s office. Number 10 (according to Mr Pollard’s sources) asked Ms Patel to keep these meetings secret so as not to embarrass the Foreign Office.

Today’s Tory establishment couldn’t have chosen a better way to mark this week’s centenary of the Balfour Declaration. They have established that 100 years on their party’s relationship with Zionism remains steeped in dishonour.

Politically incorrect religion: the PM and the two covenants

The wedding of Theresa and Philip May at her father's church in Oxfordshire. mrs May's father, the Rev. Hubert Brasier, stands second right with Mrs Brasier, by then confined to a wheelchair.

The wedding of Theresa and Philip May at her father’s church in Oxfordshire. Mrs May’s father, the Rev. Hubert Brasier, stands second right with Mrs Brasier, by then confined to a wheelchair.

Giles Fraser – a left-wing but pro-Brexit Anglican vicar – has recently drawn attention to the religious background of Theresa May, newly appointed Prime Minister.  It is well known that Mrs May is a vicar’s daughter. Less well known (as Fr. Fraser points out) is that her father was on the most extreme Anglo-Catholic wing of the Church of England.  This carries politically incorrect implications that Fr. Fraser chooses not to discuss.

During Mrs May’s childhood her father – Fr. Hubert Brasier – was successively vicar of two countryside parishes near Oxford: St Kenelm, Enstone, from 1959 to 1970; and St Mary the Virgin, Wheatley, from 1970 until his death in 1981.

In her appearance on the BBC’s Desert Island Discs in 2014, Mrs May chose as one of her eight records the hymn ‘Therefore we before him bending’.  As Fr. Fraser writes in his Guardian article:

Now this really is a fascinating choice. First, because no one who wasn’t a proper churchgoer would ever have heard of it. And, second, because it betrays the enormous sacramental influence of her high church father. Benediction, the worship of the blessed sacrament – or “wafer worship” as Protestant scoffers often describe it – is pretty hardcore Anglo-Catholic stuff. That’s why she was named after a 500-year-old Catholic saint. As time goes on, this background is bound to shape her ministry – and yes, that’s how she will think of it.

During her Desert Island Discs interview, Mrs May recalled:

“a hymn which sometimes, if my father and mother and I were alone in the church, we would just kneel down and sing …’Therefore we before him Bending'”

There is a reason why this hymn would have been sung by the vicar’s family in the absence of the congregation: this particular hymn (known to Roman Catholics down the centuries as Tantum ergo) is theological and political dynamite!  It is sung during a service formally known as ‘Benediction of (or with) the Blessed Sacrament’‘.

This service is seen by the more Protestant (‘low church’) end of the Church of England as illegal: earlier in the last century there would sometimes be legal action taken against Anglo-Catholic vicars by parishoners if Benediction was introduced into their church. Very likely this was the reason for Fr Brasier singing this service in private with his family. Certainly the current website of St Mary’s, Wheatley, does not suggest that it is today an exceptionally “high church” parish.

Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament - the service celebrated privately by Theresa May's family during her childhood - was once seen as 'illegal' in the Church of England

Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament – the service celebrated privately by Theresa May’s family during her childhood – was once seen as ‘illegal’ in the Church of England

Several decades later a wider issue is raised by the words of the Tantum ergo (written by the great scholar St Thomas Aquinas in the mid-13th century).  Latin being a very precise language, there is no room here for modern liberal fudging: St Thomas writes that we venerate the blessed sacrament – the body and blood of Christ – as we celebrate the transition from the old covenant (between God and his ‘chosen people’, the Jews) to the new covenant (between God and Christians).

The English words of the hymn sung by Theresa May and her family are obscure, but the Latin original is clear: et antiquum documentum novo cedat ritui.  The ancient document – the old covenant – gives way to the new rite, represented by the substance of Christ’s body and blood in the form (the ‘accidental’ appearance) of bread and wine.

Cedat is the important word here: the Latin verb cedere meaning to surrender, yield, or give way – as in English to cede territory after a war, to concede in an argument, or indeed to succeed – as Prime Minister May has succeeded David Cameron.

Modern, liberal Catholic spokesmen have sometimes argued that the old covenant with the Jews remains in force alongside the new covenant sealed by Christ’s death and resurrection. Ironically Fr. Brasier’s old parish at Enstone includes the village of Heythrop – which was the original base of Heythrop College, London University’s specialist theological college founded by the Jesuits.  Modern tutors at Heythrop – such as former principal Brendan Callaghan – have been in the forefront of those arguing that the divine covenant with Jewry remains valid. Pope Francis recently insisted that the Church “recognises the irrevocability of the covenant and God’s constant and faithful love for Israel.” He added: “it is clear there is an inseparable bond between Christians and Jews.”

Yet if Prime Minister May truly believes the words of the hymn she sang as a child – the words she chose to take with her to the BBC’s putative desert island – she cannot believe this, any more than she could believe that David Cameron retains Prime Ministerial authority alongside her.

This raises a contradiction for Mrs May, who has identified herself very strongly with the Zionist bandit state of Israel – whether through conviction or political convenience, one cannot tell.

In April 2015 (as Home Secretary) Mrs May addressed Britain’s largest Zionist youth movement in a speech celebrating the 67th anniversary of Israel’s foundation, a catastrophe known to Palestinians as the Nakba.

Mrs May explicitly referred to commemorating Yom Hazikaron, the day on which “We remember the sacrifice of those who fought to achieve and protect that independence.”

This means most notably those Zionist terrorists who died fighting against British forces and Arab civilians during 1945-48, and includes those who were executed for atrocities such as the murder of Lord Moyne and his driver Lance Corporal Arthur Fuller.

How can an educated person at one and the same time believe in the words of St Thomas Aquinas in the Tantum ergo – the traditional teaching of the Christian church down the centuries – yet at the same time celebrate the creation of the State of Israel as a fulfilment of the old covenant with Jewry, which had – according to that Christian doctrine – been abrogated?

How can a British political leader publicly “remember the sacrifice” of Jewish, anti-British terrorists as though they were heroes?

Perhaps for an aspirant Prime Minister any heresy, any betrayal, any hypocrisy is conceivable for the sake of personal ambition.

New Prime Minister Theresa May, alongside Sir Eric Pickles (chairman of Conservative Friends of Israel) declares "I am a Jew"

New Prime Minister Theresa May, alongside Sir Eric Pickles (chairman of Conservative Friends of Israel) declares “I am a Jew”

Top Tory in “racist” storm after comments on black crime

Tory Oliver Letwin let the racist cat out of the bag

Tory Oliver Letwin let the racist cat out of the bag

Cabinet Office minister Oliver Letwin – regarded as one of the main intellectual influences on the modern Conservative Party – is at the centre of a storm over “racist” comments he made in the mid-1980s.

Letwin’s remarks will be published tomorrow by the UK’s National Archives, as part of the annual release for documents from 30 years ago. They form part of a discussion at the highest levels of Margaret Thatcher’s government, following riots in October 1985 on the Broadwater Farm estate in North London, where Police Constable Keith Blakelock was butchered by a mob of machete-wielding black thugs.

While many of his fellow Tories urged liberal responses – i.e. throwing money at black ghettos – Letwin and his colleague Hartley Booth advised Mrs Thatcher:

“The root of social malaise is not poor housing, youth ‘alienation’ or the lack of a middle class. Lower-class unemployed white people lived for years in appalling slums without a breakdown of public order on anything like the present scale.

“Riots, criminality and social disintegration are caused solely by individual characters and attitudes. So long as bad moral attitudes remain, all efforts to improve inner cities will founder.”

They mocked suggestions that government money should fund young black entrepreneurs:

“New entrepreneurs will set up in the disco and drug trade; refurbished council blocks will decay through vandalism and neglect; and people will graduate from employment programmes into unemployment or crime.”

Booth (who eventually succeeded Thatcher as MP for Finchley from 1992 to 1997) added that the proposal to spend £10m on a “communities programme” in the riot-hit area would merely “subsidise Rastafarian arts and crafts workshops”.  He warned in a later memo that there had been reports of Broadwater Farm residents acquiring petrol bombs and napalm.

Murdered policeman Keith Blakelock (left) and a court reporter's drawing of Nicholas Jacobs, who was cleared of PC Blakelock's murder in 2014.  The killing remains officially unsolved.

Murdered policeman Keith Blakelock (left) and a court reporter’s drawing of Nicholas Jacobs, who was cleared of PC Blakelock’s murder in 2014. The killing remains officially unsolved.

These comments by Letwin and Booth are not officially published until tomorrow, but an error by online journalists who had been given an advance briefing (on condition they did not report the contents until tomorrow) has meant the story broke early.  Predicatably leftwingers have expressed outrage.  Labour Party spokesman John Ashworth demanded a retraction:

“These offensive remarks are very concerning, particularly given his very senior position in the current Government as David Cameron’s policy supremo.

“I’m sure Mr Letwin will want to clarify these remarks and apologise as soon as possible.”

Sadly we expect Letwin will be forced to grovel: no one in the mainstream media will dare to reflect on whether his words might have been true.

8 AM update: The full Downing Street file on the Broadwater Farm riot has been published this morning and can be downloaded here as a PDF.

Leading Zionist appointed Minister for Syrian Refugees

Richard Harrington – Britain's new minister for Syrian refugees

Richard Harrington – Britain’s new minister for Syrian refugees

The increasingly shameless David Cameron today appointed a new Home Office minister for Syrian refugees.  His choice was Richard Harrington, a Jewish property developer who served for many years as chairman of Conservative Friends of Israel.

Harrington was one of the speakers at the funeral of Cyril Paskin, notorious as “field commander” of the ultra-violent 62 Group, an alliance of militant Jews and communists whose raison d’etre was to attack nationalist meetings.

Alongside prominent Blairite financier Sir David Garrard, Harrington was a trustee of Paskin’s charity the Philip Green Memorial Trust, which gave regular donations to the ‘anti-fascist’ journal Searchlight.

Searchlight editor Gerry Gable was a colleague of Paskin in the 62 Group, and spoke alongside Harrington at Paskin’s funeral.

  • Find By Category

  • Latest News

  • Follow us on Twitter