Outrage at pro-Hamas protest as London cop threatens man with arrest for 'openly Jewish' appearance

The Metropolitan Police in London face accusations that they capitulated to radical pro-Hamas activists last weekend by threatening to arrest a British Jew because his presence was deemed provocative to a mob of anti-Israel protesters.

A shocking video published by the British Campaign Against Antisemitism from the pro-Hamas and anti-Israel march shows a Metropolitan Police officer ordering Gideon Falter, the CEO of the Campaign Against Antisemitism, not to cross a street because of his “openly Jewish” appearance. Falter was returning from a Saturday synagogue service and was wearing a kippah, or skullcap.

The London cop even threatened Falter with arrest. He accused Falter of “a breach of peace with all these other people.” Falter was with five other people, some of whom were also wearing skullcaps.


Falter told Fox News Digital, “What happened to me was a disgrace. Imagine what it felt like to be told by police officers that being ‘quite openly Jewish’ would ‘antagonize’ people, and so I must leave the area on pain of arrest.” 

Critics have argued that the Metropolitan Police commissioner, Sir Mark Rowley, is incapable of imposing order on the streets of London and there are now growing calls for his dismissal. 

“The time has come for Sir Mark Rowley to go. He must resign or be removed by the mayor of London and the Home secretary,” Falter said.

Falter continued, “Nearly a week after the incident, Sir Mark’s assistant commissioner issued a statement calling my presence ‘provocative’ and saying that by making public what had happened, I had put a ‘dent in the confidence of many Jewish Londoners.'”

Protesters hold placards and Palestinian flags

Protesters hold placards and Palestinian flags during an anti-Israel rally in Trafalgar Square, London, Nov. 4, 2023. (Victoria Jones/PA via AP)

Falter said, “The ensuing outrage forced the Met to apologize yet again. This time, it was for their appalling, abject victim blaming, which had come from the top and showed that after six months, Sir Mark’s Met still does not get it and is not about to improve unless there is a change of leadership.”

Falter continued, “What happened to me was the inevitable conclusion of six months of inertia and contextualizing crimes away by a Met that has curtailed the rights of law-abiding Londoners in order to appease mobs rife with anti-Jewish racists and terrorist sympathizers.”


London anti-Israel protest

Anti-Israel protesters march in London on Dec. 9, 2023. (Andy Soloman/UCG/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)

Rowley told Fox News Digital, “Every member of the Met is determined to ensure that London is a city in which everyone feels safe. We absolutely understand how vulnerable Jewish and Muslim Londoners feel since the terrorist attacks on Israel. Some of our actions have increased this concern. I personally reiterate our apology from earlier this week. Today, as with every other day, our officers will continue to police with courage, empathy and impartiality.”

police officer confront Falter

A London police officer confronts Gideon Falter, the CEO of the Campaign Against Antisemitism, over his “openly Jewish” appearance. (Campaign Against Antisemitism)

In a Sunday article published in the Times of London, Falter wrote, “The march came towards us and after a few minutes the crowd got thicker, people stopping and shouting abuse at us: ‘Disgusting,’ ‘lock them up,’ ‘Nazis,’ ‘scum,’ There were people there, right there, who were expressing as loudly as they could how much they hated me for looking Jewish, and not a single person was saying: ‘You shouldn’t do that,’ or ‘I disapprove.’”

Falter wrote that the Metropolitan Police have created a “no-go zone” for Jews in central London, adding it is now a “police-enforced Jew-free zone.”

Falter told Fox News Digital that Rowley’s “failure to curtail the marches by using his powers under the Public Order Act 1986 has made it impossible to bring them under control and police them properly. As a direct result of that failure, countless antisemitic hate crimes and terrorism offenses have been perpetrated in broad daylight on our streets during marches, and those responsible have walked free as his vastly outnumbered officers are powerless to intervene and some frontline officers have even been hospitalized.”


Police officers and protesters on Vauxhall Bridge during the anti-Israel march through central London on Nov. 11, 2023. (Richard Baker/In Pictures via Getty Images)

The former British home secretary, Suella Braverman, who previously urged the police to ban the pro-Hamas marches, called for Rowley’s resignation in a Sunday Telegraph article. British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak fired the outspoken Braverman after her calls for the need to rein in the mass antisemitic spectacles unfolding in London.

She wrote in the Sunday Telegraph, “Either this is gross incompetence, or it’s a culture coming from the top, where thugs are free to intimidate and harass while the rest of us have to keep our mouths shut and stay out of the way.”

Braverman continued, “If the marches are so peaceful, why was an ‘openly Jewish’ man stopped from walking near them? Despite the apology and then the apology for the apology, the truth is chilling. Over the past six months, we’ve seen failure after failure by the Met.”

She said, “If the Met commissioner is incapable of or unwilling to ensure that his officers enforce the law, and [London Mayor] Sadiq Khan is happy with the soft approach to the hate marches, then the prime minister needs to get a grip.”

Fox News Digital reported last month that Israel’s minister tasked with combating antisemitism, Amichai Chikli, termed London the “world’s most antisemitic city.”


Mark Rowley and London's mayor

Calls are growing for the Metropolitan Police commissioner, Sir Mark Rowley, left, to resign or be fired over how his force is dealing with Jewish Londoners during anti-Israel protests. (Jonathan Brady/PA Images via Getty Images)

Rabbi Abraham Cooper, the associate dean of the LA-based Simon Wiesenthal Center, told Fox News Digital that London’s “Mayor Sadiq Khan, who has made numerous positive statements against antisemitism, has contributed to an environment where British Jewish taxpayers are viewed as more of a threat to public order than pro-Hamas campaigners.”

Cooper, an international expert on antisemitism, added that the persecution of Falter “reflects the failure at the top from the police department and mayor.” He urged the mayor and the police to “talk less, and act decisively before it is too late.”

A spokesperson for Khan told Fox News Digital last month, “The mayor speaks with members of the Jewish community regularly, and despite their ongoing and real concerns, most don’t agree with the extent of the language used by the minister… The mayor continues to reiterate that with tensions running high, all Londoners have to be conscious of the language we use and how our actions make others feel – not inflaming divisions, but bringing communities together.”


The British Home Office – the equivalent of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security – said, “We welcome the Met’s apology, and recognize the complexities of policing fast-moving public protests, but simply being Jewish – or of any other race or religion – should never be seen as provocative.”


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *