Gary Mond, Chairman of the National Jewish Assembly, was invited on GB News on October 15 to discuss the Hamas invasion of Israel.
Below is the transcript of the interview:
Nana Akua: Joining me now in the studio with Gary Mont, the chairman of the advisory board of the Jewish National Assembly. Gary, welcome. Thank you so much for joining me.
Gary Mond: Thank you very much.
Nana Akua: So, Gary, I want to talk to you about what is the feeling amongst your association and those around you? Because obviously, we’ve got protests, which are—they’re not Hamas, they’re not pro-Hamas. We must stress that a lot of people there are pro-Palestine, but we’re praying that, you know, we don’t want people—obviously, it’s against the law in this country to be promoting terrorist organisations and showing that. So, what is the feeling amongst your community? Because I know some people are fighting to go to school, some of the schools are closed, people won’t wear their Jewish symbols and things like that.
Gary Mond: There’s certainly a high degree of concern and nervousness without a doubt. I think that the main attitude is that we want to see Israel have freedom to actually execute this war as it sees fit. The Prime Minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu, has made it very clear that he wants to see Hamas wiped out, and I think we want to support him in that endeavour. And what I’m very concerned about is, in the coming days, particularly after there is a ground invasion into Gaza, we will start to see politicians, both in this country and around the world, use expressions like, restraint on both sides. What we must not have is a situation where we’re back to previous wars, where Hamas is left intact at the end. Hamas must be wiped out, destroyed, so that this sort of situation, like what happened on the 7th of October, can never, ever happen again.
Nana Akua: I think when they refer to that, obviously, they’re talking about the safety of citizens within Gaza and the places where these bombings are taking place, I think that’s the main concern.
Gary Mond: Nobody wants to kill innocent civilians at all. Nobody. Well, Hamas does, but nobody on the Israeli side wants to kill innocent civilians. Your previous speaker made reference to the care that’s taken by the Israeli army and the Israeli other military forces in the Air Force to try to ensure that, under minimal risk of civilians being harmed, they are going for Hamas, they are going for Hamas’ infrastructure, they are going for Hamas’ leaders. We have to wipe out Hamas. And of course, what we will try to do, what they will try to do, is to minimise civilian casualties.
Nana Akua: You know, the concern with this is, though, that as I mentioned to Uri, that this is escalating now with Iran saying, and we’ve heard this now coming from that camp, that they cannot sit by and watch if this becomes a full-on offensive, they will step in, and that is a big fear.
Gary Mond: That’s obviously a very serious worry, but I have confidence that Israel has planned for this. We’ve been hearing for many, many years, successive Israeli Prime Ministers have said that Israel knows how to defend itself. Now we will find out if they were right. I believe they were. I think that Israel will be able to deal with Hezbollah, and ultimately, it may actually have to deal with Iran as well.
Nana Akua: And how safe do Jewish people in your view feel in this country now, I mean, from what we’ve seen? Do you feel safe?
Gary Mond: We have confidence in the government. We feel we’re generally much loved by many, many people. We are concerned about the support for Hamas, and I was pleased to hear that when there was a lady who was wearing essentially a pro-Hamas t-shirt yesterday at the rally…
Nana Akua: She had a sticker on her back with the paratroopers on there.
Gary Mond: I hear the police are going to try to find her and will arrest her. So I think the police will do their best, are doing their best, and we have a rally, and my organisation, the National Judicial Assembly, has a rally at half past six tomorrow outside Portland, in Portland Place, outside the BBC, to complain about how they failed to use the word terrorist to describe Hamas.
Nana Akua: But with the BBC, as I’ve looked through a lot of their literature, they never call anyone terrorist. So they didn’t call ISIS terrorists. They didn’t call the IRA terrorists.
Gary Mond: They have in the past.
Nana Akua: Well, we did actually do a lot of research to find points where they have. They’ll only do it in a reference if somebody else has said it and repeat that, but they won’t initially say it themselves. This is different because this is not one of those conflicts where it’s possibly to be neutral. And you must compare this with, for example, the IRA. Now, the IRA were widely referred to as terrorists. But what the difference between the IRA and Hamas is, is that the IRA were not genocidal terrorists. I actually have a slightly additional point to make here, to many others in the community. I would refer to Hamas as genocidal terrorists because their interest is in murdering Jews. Quite simply, the IRA didn’t set out to murder all Christians. The Hamas, on the other hand, set out to murder Jews in Israel and would murder them elsewhere if they could.
Nana Akua: Well, Gary, thank you so much for talking to me. It’s really good to speak to you again. And, you know, again, hopefully we’ll invite you back to update us.