Now take a look at what BICOM, the Britain Israel Communication and Research Centre are saying in the Huffington Post:
Now that's just plain silly because the mainstream media always puts Israel and Israelis in the most favourable light possible and there's not a whole lot Galloway can do about that. And, the writer of the HuffPo piece, Toby Greene, comes close to admitting as much:
Galloway himself is of course irrelevant. His repeated, ridiculous acts of buffoonery are a gift to those who reject his opinions and a liability to anyone who might share them.So what's the problem from the Israel lobby perspective?
Now this is nonsense. The issue here is the extent to which an individual or group can be said to represent the Israeli state. An Israeli diplomat is obviously a representative of the Israeli state. I know of no other diplomat from a notoriously human rights abusive state being invited to address a university in the UK. That doesn't mean it hasn't happened but it seems unlikely. A dance troupe from Israel might be harder to discern as boycottable but this is the first paragraph of the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel's call to boycott the troupe that Greene is referring to, ie, Batsheva:
The Batsheva Dance Company of Tel Aviv is touring the US and Canada in January, February, and March, 2009. A recipient of public financing since the 1990s, the dance troupe is clearly an Israeli apartheid cultural institution. Writing October 26, 2008, in The Independent of London, Jenny Gilbert reports that the dance company is "funded by Israel's government, its performers include none of Arab extraction, and it is 'proud to be considered Israel's leading ambassador.'"Read the whole thing and see for sure that clearly this isn't a case of people being unable to "stand the sight or sound of an Israeli".
Galloway did manage to convey that impression to non-initiates but it's hard to believe that there is anyone at BICOM who doesn't know the general thrust of the BDS Movement.