Leading Irish politician says Jewish lobby in US silences voices critical of Israel

Israel’s Foreign Ministry termed “very disturbing” comments made by a senior Irish politician and potential foreign minister about a “huge Jewish lobby” in the US that he alleges is squelching criticism of Israel.

On the Pakistani-English Indus News channel, Niall Collins – Foreign Affairs spokesperson for Ireland’s opposition Fianna Fáil party – addressed the question of suppressing critical voices of Israel during an interview with Waqar Rizvi, who formerly worked for Iran’s Press TV.

“There is this movement to suppress criticism specifically when it comes to that related to Israel,” Rizvi asserted, setting up his question. “Why do you think that is, and do you think there is any way to ever actually succeed in cutting down or completely sidelining voices that are pro-Palestinian and want to talk about the atrocities throughout the occupied territories?”

Replied Collins, “There is an effort to suppress any criticism, and any speaking out against the suppressive policies of Israel.” He said he himself has been “targeted” in social media “by people trying to suppress me and drown out my voice.”

Collins said that this was a “form of extremism” that has been emboldened because “the present Israeli government, and the policy of constantly building settlements and how they treat the Palestinian people, is being entirely, 100% supported by the American administration and the Trump administration.”

But the fault, he said, doesn’t rest entirely with the Trump Administration, but rather with Jews.

“I wouldn’t entirely blame the Trump administration either in terms of when we’re apportioning blame to the United States, because right across corporate America and right across America, I think at every level there’s a huge Jewish lobby who have helped to create the problem we are now discussing,” Collins said.

Israel Foreign Ministry spokesman Nizar Amer said Collins’s “absurdly exaggerated understanding of Jewish influence is very disturbing.”

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