Jewish Social Work Group statement unequivocally condemning the Pogrom on 7th October 2023 by Hamas
Words do not come easy, and it has taken some time for us to be able to provide a statement. We apologise for this and hope you can understand.
The targeting of all innocent civilians in the Israel and Palestinian conflict is horrific and must be condemned. However, this statement focuses on the pogrom by Hamas on the 7th October 2023, and its impact on your Jewish colleagues and Jewish people you work with. Hamas is a far right and racist group as evidenced in their founding 1988 constitution, which accuses Jews of being responsible for all revolutions and world wars in the modern era.
The UK Jewish Social Work Group members are still in shock at the unjustifiable brutal maiming, torture, raping, and civilian hostage taking by Hamas on the 7th October 2023, in Israel. It was the worst slaughter of Jews since the Holocaust. We are still processing the loss from the pogrom and the genocidal massacre committed by Hamas. We are still grieving. We are still also trying to navigate what this means for us, our family and friends, those we work with, and the inevitable rise in antisemitism worldwide.
In the past few weeks, we have noticed relative silence and poor support from social work organisations and colleagues. People do not know the right thing to say. This is understandable.
What is not acceptable is the celebration of the atrocities or even the justification of them as valid uprising or resistance against occupation or perceived white colonialism. This justification can be unintended and subtle, or explicit. For example, unlike some of our peers and organisations who make promises to support us and listen to us, we will call out the terrorism of Hamas for what it is - terrorism. We will also not pursue unhelpful equivalences such as the barbaric targeting of civilians by Hamas and the targeting of civilians by others.
We will continue to fight antisemitism. We will continue to report to the Police anyone who promotes or supports terrorism. We will continue to support each other and work towards peace. Others may make it challenging, but we will continue to be proud to be Jewish.
If you are Jewish, in whatever form that takes as an ethnoreligion, and are a social worker or work in a social work organisation, you are welcome to contact us at email@example.com
BASW Special Interest Group - The Jewish Social Work Group