March 30, 2013

UCU Tribunal: Whatever happened to Snow White and the Eighth Dwarf, Pushy?

Of all the zionists openly ridiculed and denounced in the Fraser v University and College Union Employment Tribunal ruling, Jeremy Newmark and Jane Ashworth come off worst:
131 There was a conflict of evidence concerning an event at the Respondents' Congress in 2008. It is not pleaded in the claim form but since it relates to the behaviour of witnesses who appeared before us, we think it right to record brief findings on it. A closed debate was to be held, for which permits were required. Ms Jane Ashworth, a member of Engage (and a witness before us), managed (as she put it) to "sneak in" without the necessary permit. Mr Jeremy Newmark, now and perhaps then Chief Executive of the Jewish Leadership Council (also a witness before us), attempted to do likewise but was stopped by stewards. He then tried to push his way in, but was not allowed to do so. Mr Waddup (already mentioned in relation to complaint (2», spoke to Mr Newmark and told him that he would not be allowed in. We reject the allegation that Mr Waddup said, "You're not wanted here". We also reject as utterly unfounded the emotive allegation of Ms Ashworth that Mr Newmark was "Jew-baited". He was not baited at all. Neither Ms Ashworth nor Mr Newmark was a member of the Respondents. 
132 More generally, we can record these brief observations. We do so having spent an entire day listening to recordings of Congress debates. In our judgment, the proceedings were well-ordered and balanced. They were carefully controlled from the Chair. They were managed in an even-handed fashion with speakers selected in turn to speak for and against the motions. On the very rare occasions when it was necessary to call Congress to order, the chairman did so and those present responded appropriately. The debates were conducted with courtesy. Speakers on both sides received applause. Despite the strength of feeling, they lightened the occasion with humour from time to time. We were quite unable to detect the atmosphere of intimidation which the written case on the Claimant's behalf attempted to convey.
 So much for evidence but what of the people giving the evidence:
148 An unsurprising consequence of bringing forward on behalf of the Claimant a very large number of well-informed and independent-minded witnesses (including some individuals of great distinction in their fields) largely for the purpose of offering their opinions rather than giving evidence of facts, was that disagreements emerged. We have already given an example (para 53). This diversity eloquently made Mr White's 'range of views' point. Some witnesses were most impressive. These include, but are not by any means limited to, Professor Yudkin, Mr Kline and Dr Seymour. They gave careful, thoughtful, courteous evidence and were clearly mindful of their obligations as witnesses in litigation.

Unfortunately. others appeared to misunderstand the nature of the proceedings and seemed more disposed to score points or play to the gallery rather than providing straightforward answers to the clear questions put to them. We regret to say that we have rejected as untrue the evidence of Ms Ashworth and Mr Newmark concerning the incident at the 2008 Congress (see our findings under complaint (8) above). Evidence given to us about booing. jeering and harassing of Jewish speakers at Congress debates was also false, as truthful witnesses on the Claimant's side accepted. One painfully ill-judged example of playing to the gallery was Mr Newmark's preposterous claim, in answer to the suggestion in cross-examination that he had attempted to push his way into the 2008 meeting, that a 'pushy Jew' stereotype was being applied to him. The opinions of witnesses were not, of course, our concern and in most instances they were in any event unremarkable and certainly not unreasonable. One exception was a remark of Mr Newmark in the context of the academic boycott controversy in 2007 that the union was "no longer a fit arena for free speech", a comment which we found not only extraordinarily arrogant but also disturbing.

Both Jane Ashworth and Jeremy Newmark have yet to break their silence on their forensic denunciation. I don't know if or where Jane Ashworth tweets or posts but Jeremy Newmark tweets @Jeremy_Newmark.

I must say that the more I look at the judgment the more ludicrous the case looks.  Many friends of mine have asked "what were they thinking of?"  The scary thing is that they may have been hoping, in fact they must have been hoping for a perverse decision.  After all, Israel was admitted to the United Nations.


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