28th January 2005
Mr O'Doherty is of course entitled to disagree (Jan 28) with the Muslim Council of Britain's decision to decline the invitation to this year's Holocaust Memorial Day.
The view held by the MCB since the inception of Holocaust Memorial Day in 2001 is that the subtext of the memorial day - "Never Again" - is diluted by the exclusive nature of the event.
The memorial day would in our opinion be better served by covering the ongoing mass killings and human rights abuses in our world, and thus make the cry "Never Again" real for all people who suffer, even now. We must do more than just reflect on the past. We must be able to recognise when similar abuses occur in our own time.
O'Doherty's allegation that 'it is school policy in the 'occupied territories of Palestine' to deny the Holocaust' (Irish Independent, Jan 25) is simply untrue and betrays his pro-Israeli agenda. And why the need for quotation marks around Occupied Territories? The whole world except for Zionists accept that Israel is occupying and bulding illegal Jewish settlements on Palestinian land. Indeed, 60% of the Palestinian West Bank has now been gobbled up by Jewish settlers.
In today's paper (28 Jan) O'Doherty mocks the MCB's concerns about the wholly negative portrayal of Muslims in the first five episodes - the ones we have previewed - of the new series of '24'. At a time when Muslims are fast becoming the 'folk devils' of popular imagination, does Mr O'Doherty not think that broadcasters have a responsibility to try and challenge these views rather than help to reinforce them?
The Muslim Council of Britain
London E15 1NT