For those who are home, and for those who are on the way. For those who support the historic and just return of the land of Israel to its people, forever loyal to their inheritance, and its restoration.
Although Britain has managed to maintain useful relations with Israel even as it has expanded strong partnerships with most Arab states -- a policy of hedging that enabled Britain to have at least some influence with parties on all sides -- demographic changes in Britain, assisted by other developments, suggest that the "hedging" strategy is reaching its limits.
Some within the British government suggest that altering the perception among British Muslims that England subscribes to an "arrogant," "interventionist" and "pro-Zionist" foreign policy will diminish the incidence of domestic Muslim terrorism, and placate Muslim constituents. This obsequious strategy neglects the basic premise of Islamism: that even benevolent infidel regimes are enemies unguided by Allah's divine will and must be fought through jihad. British policy that sees the Arab-Israeli conflict as a prime mover of terrorism also ignores the stated goals of Muslim extremists regarding global Islamic domination.
If relations between Israel and the UK have always been characterized by ups and downs, what are we to make of the current rift? Has England's attitude towards Israel has changed permanently, or is this is just another period of temporarily strained relations that will self-correct? Evidence suggests the British domestic situation has changed in important ways that are spilling over into foreign affairs.
For one thing, the cultural climate is poisoned against Israel by British media and intellectual culture. Britain is at the very center of the "boycott, divestment and sanctions" movement. Not only have teachers and labor unions repeatedly taken up proposals to isolate and punish Israel, but Jewish, Israeli, and pro-Israel speakers have been shouted down or disinvited from various forums such as universities, while pro-Hamas speakers have been welcomed by members of Parliament.
I visited Hevron in November 2000 after the outbreak of the Rosh Hashanah War to see what could be done to assist in the face of the growing daily attacks on the community. After returning to work for the community in the summer of 2001, a bond and a love was forged that grows to this day. My wife Melody and I merited to be married at Ma'arat HaMachpela and now host visitors from throughout the world every Shabbat as well as during the week. Our goal, "Time to come Home!"