Attendees at the Shalom Festival, which took part over the course of the Edinburgh Festival, were met with taunts and Nazi salutes, the Jewish Chronicle has reported.
The festival was a full day celebration of Israel, which featured Jewish, Arab and other performers and, as the name suggests, was staged in the spirit of peace and co-operation. It attracted around 800 visitors.
A crowd of 150 protesters stood outside the event, shouting things such as “racist scum” and “shame on you”.
According to the JC, most of the crowd were members of Scottish Palestine Solidarity campaign. They also shouted “your tickets are covered in Palestinian blood” and “boycott and isolate Israel”. The definition of antisemitism states that it is antisemitic to use “the symbols and images associated with classic antisemitism (e.g., claims of Jews killing Jesus or blood libel) to characterize Israel or Israelis”. Describing the tickets to a peace event, which features Jewish and Arab performers, as “covered in Palestinian blood” borders on blood libel, as it twists even actions taken in the spirit of peace and co-operation as evidence of Jewish, or in this case Israeli, brutality
Apparently at one point the protesters crossed the line into unambiguous antisemitism, taunting the visitors with Nazi salutes.
According to Nigel Goodrich, one of the event’s organisers, many mothers complained that their children had been called racist.
Attendee Susie Kelpie said that such a response was commonplace: “it’s vile, intimidating and quite normal for any Israeli-flavoured event in this city.”