What Do They Teach in Religion and Morality lessons at Ayr’s Belmont Academy if the Principal Religion Teacher Edward Sutherland is a Virulent Racist and anti-Semite?
Sheffield Hallam Lecturer & Lawyers 4 Israel’s Lesley Klaff Declares that ‘Zio’ is not Anti-Semitic as Scottish Zionists Tried to Smear Scottish PSC as Anti-Semitic
Put yourself in their shoes. You are desperate to defend your favourite apartheid state (Israel). The only way you can do so is by accusing your opponents of ‘anti-Semitism’. So how can you prove it?
The problem they face, as everyone who is honest (no that doesn’t mean you Sir Sturmer!) is that Palestinian supporters and anti-Zionists don’t hate Jews. Nor do they blame Jews for what Israel does. That is what Zionists do. So what can the Zionists do?
Easy. If you are Edward Sutherland, a genuine non-Jewish anti-Semite, you set up a fake profile as a Palestinian supporter and then post a stream of anti-Semitic abuse. Unfortunately for Sutherland no one seemed to be taking the bait.
Therefore Sutherland and his friend, Zionist lawyer Matthew Berlow, hit on the brilliant idea of daubing ‘Free Palestine’ on Berlow’s home and blaming Scottish PSC. What could go wrong? Well everything actually!
Sutherland set up a fake Facebook profile under the name ‘Stevie Harrison’. He then posted what he considered an anti-Semitic post, ‘Fuck Israel’ and he also set up a fake Twitter account in the same name. Fuck Israel is not the most astute political comment I’ve seen but it’s not anti-Semitic.
Another of Sutherland’s charming posts read “I’ve seen it all now. “Zio prick’s asking for donations” in reference to Jewish lawyer Matthew Barlow’s Go Fund Me page. ‘Zio prick’ was his idea of anti-Semitism whereas it is simply abusive.
At the time Sutherland was Convenor of COFIS. But the icing on Sutherland’s cake was a tweet:
A certain Jewish lawyer woke up this morning to find ‘Free Palestine’ spray painted rather prominently! No idea who was responsible.
This was followed five winking emoticons insinuating that he, “Stevie Harrison”, had done the supposed spray painting. Berlow responded:
Idiocy. Typical spsc [Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign] behaviour. Criminal.
Not only does Sutherland teach morals and philosophy at Belmont Academy but he is the Principal Teacher of religious education too! One can only imagine what religion he teaches? Devil worship?
working with anti-Semites and fascists doesn’t stop GFI accusing the Labour Party under Corbyn of neo-Nazism
Sammy Stein from GFI admitted that “Mr Sutherland, as well as a few others in our organisation, have false identities on social media.’ Stein explained the fake profiles by saying:
“We do this to expose people who express anti-Semitic sentiments.”
In other words they post anti-Semitic stuff and then claim the people doing it are Palestinian supporters.
We have come across Sammy before. Sammy is nothing if not an expert in anti-Semitism. In fact he seems to spend most of his time keeping company with anti-Semites. In 2019 Stein was caught with Max Dunbar, ex-Treasurer of the BNP and Treasurer of Britannica, a fascist group which was, according to Hate not Hope, merely the BNP under another name. They were both harassing the SPSC stall.
Another friend of Stein was Jimmy Robertson, former security chief of the BNP in the Highlands. Both had been helping run the GFI stall.
Not surprisingly the General Teaching Council for Scotland (GTCS) was forced to set up a hearing into whether Sutherland was a fit and proper person to be teaching children. It’s a bit like asking whether it would be proper to appoint Wayne Couzens as the manager of a woman’s refuge. You know the answer before you begin.
The hearing was told that Sutherland ‘had shared antisemitic posts online after setting up a fake profile ‘under the pseudonym Stevie Harrison.’
Despite admitting posting the messages with a view to defaming others, Sutherland denied breaching the teachers’ code of conduct. His defence being that “We do this to expose people who express antisemitic sentiments.”
Now why you may ask should Sutherland want to trap anti-Semites into posting on his Facebook newsfeed when he is surrounded by anti-Semites? How many anti-Semites does one man want?
Messages from his Stevie Harrison account read: “Back after a 30 day ban, my first thought? F*** Israel.”
Sharing a post from a member of the Glasgow Palestine Human Rights Campaign Facebook page, Sutherland wrote: “Tried to stitch up a good mate of mine. P***k.” For a teacher of religion Sutherland has a penchant for salty language. “Free Palestine ya bastards”.
But it wasn’t just Sutherland who was in on the conspiracy to frame other people for his own anti-Semitism. According to The Times of Israel Zionist lawyer,
Matthew Berlow found to have commented on social media post about attack he knew never happened with accusation that Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign was the culprit
Screen capture from video of a Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign rally. (YouTube)
The ToI reported in February 2020 that:
A Scottish Jewish lawyer has been found to have attempted to discredit a pro-Palestinian group in accusing it of vandalism that he was aware never happened.
Matthew Berlow, a criminal solicitor based in Glasgow, faces a £500 fine following a probe by the Law Society of Scotland, the local Daily Record newspaper reported Monday.
A preliminary ruling said Berlow did not maintain the standards of behavior expected of a lawyer.
The reporter for the LSS found that Ed Sutherland, a teacher at Belmont Academy in Ayr, had created a Facebook account with the alias “Steve Harrison” which, under the guise of being a pro-Palestinian activist, he then used to associate himself with the Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign (SPSC).
Sutherland is an associate of Berlow and both men have ties to a UK-based Israel advocacy group, the Record reported.
Berlow admitted he knew the graffiti attack was fake telling the Law Society of Scotland that he played along because the Harrison persona was being used “to monitor various disruptive activities of the SPSC.”
Not surprisingly the LSS found that Berlow’s behaviour fell below the standards expected of a solicitor and that he had faked a graffiti attack at his own home. Berlow had in the past been fined by the LSS for calling SPSC ‘scummy racists.’
Berlow’s response to Sutherland’s tweet was “Idiocy. Typical SPSC behaviour criminal.” In other words he was trying to frame SPSC for criminal damage. In the circumstances the £500 fine amounted to an endorsement of criminal behaviour. Sutherland’s ‘explanation’ was
“Unfortunately I made it too real and named an organization I shouldn’t have. It wasn’t my intention to blame the SPSC for a fictitious event.”
As Mick said, the LSS should have reconsidered their fine
“because the damage to our reputation, in accusing us of such criminal acts, is impossible to deny.”
In 2018 Berlow was ordered to undergo “diversity training” and pay a fine after abusing Palestinian campaigners. He was given a fine of £1,750 as well as an additional £100 to University of Aberdeen lecturer and pro-Palestinian campaigner Dr. Karolin Hijazi, for calling her a “snowflake” and a “wannabe justice warrior.”
One of Sutherland’s worst comments was about Berlow, saying:
‘Looks like a certain Zio’s big nose is out of joint. Don’t worry Mr. Berlow, You’re going to get what’s coming to you.’
When the fake account began to raise suspicion, Sutherland lashed out:
Someone complained to Facebook about me not using my real name. I don’t know what… they are up to but there it is on my profile.
Stevie Harrison. If you want my birth certificate, just say.
If I lose my job because some zionist doesn’t like me supporting the people of Palestine, don’t worry about it. I’ll still have my dignity.
The see you next Tuesday who complained won’t have. Rant over.
According to Mick Napier, the Law Society of Scotland got involved, which led Berlow to admit that he was behind the Stevie Harrison posts — in other words faking his own antisemitic harassment, which of course for Zionists is nothing new.
At this point the rats fell out among themselves. Berlow defended himself by exposing Sutherland’s role: it was Sutherland, not he, who was behind the fake postings. As Tom Suarez observed
‘if Berlow knew of the deceit when it took place, then he knowingly accused SPSC on no basis, and so in early 2019 SPSC filed a complaint against Berlow with the Law Society’
which found against him but imposed the derisory fine.
Actually I agree with Berlow but that’s because the IHRA is not about anti-Semitism but anti-Zionism. It is a confidence trick that too many University administrators and academics have gone along with.
Bear in mind that in April 2018 the Herald reported that SPSC was being criticised for using a “vile and derogatory word” to describe Zionists and supporters of Israel. And what was this word? ‘Zio’. As Mick explained:
I use ‘zio’ because I am hostile to the political ideology of Zionism adding that ‘Zio is not to be confused remotely with a racist epithet.”
You may remember the fake ‘anti-Semitism’ allegations in the Labour Party which have now mysteriously disappeared as Sir Sturmer busies himself with expelling Jewish members.
In 2016 Shami Chakrabarti issued a report which described ‘zio’ as ‘a new modern-day racist epithet’. Utter nonsense but Chakrabarti understood nothing about Zionism or anti-Semitism.
Sammy Stein, told the Daily Record that Sutherland had been using the alias “for years”, but that “Ed is no anti-Semite. In fact, he’s a friend of Israel.”
Of course as anyone knows, there is nothing incompatible with being a Zionist and an anti-Semite. On the contrary the list of anti-Semites who love Zionism and the State of Israel is as long as your arm:
Tommy Robinson, Viktor Orban, neo-Nazi Richard Spencer (a ‘White Zionist’), Donald Trump etc. etc. If you are an anti-Semite what is there not to love about Zionism and Israel? Anti-Semites want to get rid of Jews and where better to send them than Israel?
Some of the most important Zionists in history have also held vile anti-Jewish attitudes. And some of the world’s worst contemporary anti-Semites are militantly pro-Israel.
Sutherland was both Convener and site administrator of COFIS, a registered charity. Sutherland took over the position of Convener in 2018 from another disgraced official, Nigel Goodrich, when Goodrich‘s involvement with an overtly racist Facebook group was exposed. Nigel Goodrich left the UK after an earlier case involving Facebook deception when his membership of an extreme right-wing Facebook page Jewish Defence Forces was revealed.
The JDF included members jailed for violent assault and people like Israeli academic Mordechai Kedar who advocated the rape of Palestinian women to deter Palestinian resistance. Its posted “Rule One” which was: “This group is about ‘Palestine and Palestinians’ which doesnt [sic] exist.’ Sutherland defended Goodrich at the time, claiming he left COFIS “due to relocating outside of the UK”.
What Sutherland and Berlow did is nothing new. As Asa Winstanley wrote Mossad-linked Israeli law firm Shurat HaDin admitted posting a series of violently anti-Semitic comments to Facebook in order to frame Palestinians and solidarity activists. In 2019, Electronic Intifada exposed a network of fake Twitter trolls systematically posting violent anti-Semitism in order to frame Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party and the Muslim community. See:
COFIS has “an extensive record of publishing racist materials” Mick Napier wrote that
The Scottish body charged with overseeing charities should revoke COFIS’ charitable status immediately.
The GTC stated that the “material posted by the teacher was of an anti-Semitic nature”, and Mr Sutherland could lose his job pending the outcome of the upcoming hearing.
It is alleged that his fitness to teach is impaired as a result of breaching several parts of the GTC Scotland code of professionalism and conduct.
It was Sutherland’s defence however that provoked astonishment. In 2018 one of the charges against me by the Labour Party was that:
“On numerous occasions since May 2016, Mr Greenstein has uploaded deeply offensive and derisory antisemitic posts to social media and comments boards including but not limited to : repeatedly using “zio” as a term of derision,
According to the Jewish Journal, ‘zio’ is an ‘anti-Semitic slur coined by the KKK’. Yet what was the defence put forward by Sheffield Hallam lecturer Lesley Klaff of UK Lawyers for Israel on behalf of Sutherland?
According to Mick Napier Klaff defended Sutherland by insisting that anti-Zionism and anti-Semitism should not be confused; ‘Zio’ was merely “an abbreviation” and not racist! Which is rich coming from an organisation that dedicates its life to proving that anti-Zionism = anti-Semitism. Klaff argued that:
“A reasonable person would realize that this is a reference to somebody who supports Israel…Zionism is a political ideology and there’s a range of views held by Jews on Israel and there’s a range of views held by non-Jews on Israel. There are plenty of non-Jews who are Zionist and there are quite a few Jews who aren’t…Zionism is not legally recognized as an aspect of Jewish identity. It’s recognized legally as a political movement or ideology to which some Jews subscribed. Many non-Jews do as well, so it’s not unequivocally anti-Semitic.
Sutherland agreed with Klaff about “Zio” and “Zionist”:
“It’s frequently used as a derogatory term for people who support the State of Israel, whether they’re Jewish or not. It is only ever in my experience used as a political insult.”
Klaff is the same person who was responsible for a complaint of ‘anti-Semitism’ being made against Palestinian academic Shahd Abusalama at Sheffield Hallam University. Klaff is sister-in-law of the open racist and fascist, Sharon KKKlaff.
Klaff’s defence of Sutherland demonstrates the dishonesty of the Zionist lobby. Klaff argued that even when “Zio” was used with a hostile expletive this was not anti-Semitic. Posting repeatedly about a “Zio prick” or a “fucking Zio” was not anti-Semitic but entirely political, claimed Sutherland:
In my experience it is an abbreviation for Zionist, in an entirely political sense. It’s entirely political and makes no reference to Jewish tradition culture or religion. “Zio prick” is vulgar but not anti-Semitic.
Oddly enough this was my defence at my expulsion hearing from the Labour Party in February 2018. My argument was simple. ‘Zio’ is short for Zionist and if you believe a Zionist and a Jew are one and the same then it is you who is anti-Semitic. Jeremy Corbyn, being an utter fool went along with it describing ‘zio’ as a ‘vile epithet.’
Sutherland told the tribunal that several other current members of COFIS had also set up Facebook profiles with false identities.
Sutherland and Berlow were co-conspirators who went on to invent a graffiti attack on the lawyer’s home, which they then attributed to Scottish PSC. According to Sutherland’s testimony theirs was a close collaboration. Asked if he shared his posts with Berlow before or after he posted them, Sutherland replied that it was “a combination of the two. It was a daily discussion. I shared all of them with Mr. Berlow”.
Having been caught in flagrante, and facing disciplinary action by their respective professional associations, Sutherland and Berlow put forward an unprecedented defence. It turned on its head the traditional accusation of Zionists that anti-Semitism equals anti-Semitism.
The smearing of political opponents as ‘anti-Semitic’ has been promoted by the Israeli regime since its foundation. Foreign Minister, Abba Eban, explained that Israel works “to prove that the distinction between anti-Semitism and anti-Zionism is not a distinction at all”.
Boris Johnson’s racist ‘anti-Semitism’ Czar, Lord Mann demanded that UK Labour Party leader, Keir Starmer, outlaw the critical use of the term “Zionist”. That party has ruled that “Zio” was on a par with racist slurs, and “should have no place in Labour party discourse”.
Conflating anti-Zionism with anti-Semitism was a constant of pro-Israel advocacy – until the recent GTCS hearing.
A REAL RACIST SLUR DEFENDED
Sutherland’s “Stevie Harrison” jeered about Matthew Berlow, that the “Zio’s big nose is out of joint”. Klaff insisted that such a post was not anti-Semitic, “given that many Zionists are not Jews and given that many non-Jews have big noses and many Jews don’t”.
This is disingenuous but clearly the GTC was out of its depth. Nazi propaganda about Jews regularly caricatured Jews with oversized noses. Sutherland claimed the post was “not made generically about any group of people. It refers specifically to Mr Berlow personally having a big nose”. Pull the other one.
Scottish Zionists have a long history of making false accusations of ‘anti-Semitism’ against Scottish PSC. In January 2018 Berlow denounced “people from the spsc shouting about big noses” at his comrades in Glasgow city centre. That earlier fabrication stands in stark contrast to the evidence he gave under oath that they believed that jibes about “Zio big noses” do not constitute anti-Semitism..
Berlow was asked if he thought someone genuinely posting any of those comments would be anti-Semitic: “I would say that this is a person who has a problem with supporters of Israel, with Zionists”.
ZIOS SUPPOSEDLY DEFENDING FREE SPEECH
Klaff who is nothing if not dishonest, which admittedly is a common characteristic amongst lawyers, defended the right to belligerent anti-Zionist discourse as being protected by the IHRA definition:
The IHRA definition was never intended as a tool to be used to sanction people or take away their livelihood or indeed to take away people’s free speech rights…or to discipline them because it’s got to be used in the context of other laws like employment, protection legislation, the right to free speech under Article 10 of the European Convention of Human Rights and so on
This comes from someone who used the IHRA to try and get a young Palestinian academic at her own university sacked! The dishonesty of these Zios beggars belief. The person who drafted the IHRA, Kenneth Stern, said it was being used to ‘chill’ free speech.
Klaff issued a veiled threat of possible legal action against the GTCS if it found against Sutherland by relying on a dictionary definition of anti-Semitism:
If Mr.Sutherland was sanctioned for these comments on the basis of a definition other than the IHRA definition, if he was to pursue the case under the European Convention of Human Rights, courts would take a dim view of that. Given that the government has adopted it, I think we all need to be singing from the same hymn sheet.
THERE WERE SEVERAL WEAKNESSES in the proceedings of the GTC panel, each attributable to the fact that the only witnesses called were pro-Israel campaigners
· Although her testimony was recognised by the GTC ‘prosecutor’ to be ‘confusing’, ‘conflicting’, and ‘distinctly odd’, the supposedly ‘expert’ testimony of a member of UK Lawyers for Israel was not scrutinised by anyone with expertise in the field.
· The potentially criminal act of fabricating a crime to falsely incriminate SPSC was not included in the hearing on Sutherland’s fitness to teach, although the deception was jointly promoted by Sutherland and Berlow, and has been admitted under pressure by Berlow, who defended their joint endeavor as a “a moment of madness”. Sutherland’s lawyer insisted there was no question of criminality in his client’s behavior and this went unchallenged.
· A lack of knowledge from members of the panel meant that the GFoI fantasy narrative of frightening aggression from ‘hate groups’ hostile to Israel was never questioned. Stein and Berlow were accepted unchallenged as “credible witnesses” and their record of working with a right-wing extremist and Holocaust denier to harass pro-Palestine campaigners remained undisclosed.
· Sutherland pleaded to the panel that “nothing I have done was motivated by intolerance or prejudice”. This too went unchallenged, whereas the extreme anti-Palestinian racism of the group he led was expressed in numerous racist posts, including a post from the admin welcoming the “euthanizing” of three [Palestinian] rioters in Jerusalem”. Another praised the massacre of Muslims in a New Zealand mosque as “payback for what Muslims have done”
During the four-day GTCS hearing the Israeli lobby demonstrated their true colours. They are not interested in fighting racism but defending Israel and attacking those who stand with Palestine.
See Shock Zionist U-turn at GTC Sutherland hearing, Mick Napier, 15 April 2022, Mick NapierNone of this stopped Jonathan Hoffman, the former Vice-Chair of the Zionist Federation and a good supporter of Tommy Robinson and friend of fascists and anti-Semites alike, from defending Sutherland and Berlow. Hoffman’s only qualification for defending anti-Semites is that they support Zionism and the Israeli state. Which practically includes all anti-Semites today!
Naturally being a concerned member of the public I emailed Belmont Academy to find out whether Sutherland was still teaching at the school. The correspondence is below:
Dear Sir or Madam,
I am writing an article on Edward Sutherland, the teacher from Belmont Academy, who set up a fake anti-Semitic Facebook group under a pseudonym. Please can you confirm whether he is still a teacher of Religion and Morals and Philosophy at your school or not?
Sent on 26/04/2022 14:15:00 by Kenny Ross
Hi Tony, please see our response below. If you send any future enquiries to [email protected] we will get you a response.
A spokesperson for South Ayrshire Council said: “A hearing conducted by the General Teaching Council for Scotland is currently underway, and it would be inappropriate for us to comment at this stage.”
I therefore responded:
18:19 (5 hours ago)
Dear Mr Ross,
I find it strange that you and the local authority seem unable to say whether you are still employing an open racist and anti-Semite, to say nothing of someone who adopts fake persona on social media in order to blame others for a purported act of vandalism. What I find even more absurd is that this man is a teacher of religion, morals and philosophy! I just hope God has a sense of humour.
This seems out of a Life of Brian sketch.