Scotland’s First Minister and independence campaign leader Alex Salmond has been blasted for comparing the democratically elected government of Israel and the terrorist organisation ISIS following the beheading of British aid working David Haines.
Salmond, speaking on the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show this weekend said:
“The Muslim community of Scotland isn’t responsible in any shape or form for atrocities or extremism, just like a few weeks ago the Jewish community of Scotland wasn’t responsible for the policies of the state of Israel.”
But the juxtaposition of the two, entirely, incomparable organisations has been criticised by influential leaders of Britain’s Jewish community.
According to the Jewish Chronicle, Board of Deputies president Vivian Wineman said: “Any attempt to equate the actions of the democratically elected Israeli government in defending its citizens from attack with the despicable cold-blooded murder of a British aid worker by terrorists would be self-evidently absurd and vile and we cannot conceive that this was the First Minister’s intention.”
The JC.com also notes that anti-Semitic attacks have risen in Scotland following Israel’s latest attempts to dismantle Hamas’s terrorist infrastructure in Gaza.
Salmond’s Scottish National Party is known to be a haven in Scotland for anti-Israel sentiment. External Affairs Minister Humza Yousaf recently urged the British government to introduce an arms embargo on Israel, and has stated that the country would welcome refugees from Gaza.