Celtic Has Condemned Some Of Its Own Fans, Today It Must Defend The Rest Of Us.

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There is not a single regular reader of this blog – and not a casual one either based on my inbox – who doesn’t know that I have supported the club over The Green Brigade and wholeheartedly view their actions as both fair and proper.

I have said so. Repeatedly.

I predicted this end a long time before it ever came, before Palestinian flags were the alleged issue, back when it was a bit of pyro and people wanting fights with the police.

I believe that their extreme politics casts a negative light over our club. I wrote yesterday about the banner in support of the PFLP and how disgusting it was. I said much the same on the Graham Spiers podcast the other night.

I think my position is crystal clear.

But allegations that the Celtic support is antisemitic are also damaging, and perhaps even more so. Idiotic, ignorant hacks far from the centre of the action can make such claims until the cows come home and I don’t give a damn about that.

Many of them are professional haters and if they aren’t using racist language to talk about immigrants, they are finding some poor bastard in the celebrity world to pick on for not wearing a poppy.

Their opinions are of no importance or concern to me whatsoever.

But today’s newspapers are carrying reports that the Israeli national coach has branded our fans as “known to be antisemitic.”

If that quote is accurate then Celtic needs to do something it has not done in a long, long time … it has to speak in support of our fans and condemn that statement as a distortion of fact and reality. We cannot afford that view to prevail. We cannot have a national coach put that on the record and leave it there uncontested.

It’s a lie. And Celtic should call it a lie.

At a time when some of our own fans are accusing the club of acting out of spite and others in an effort to silence political expression, it would not just be a gesture of solidarity with the rest of us and a signal that we’re done being beat up on from all sides, but it would go some way towards bringing this club together again.

I find his comments as offensive and disgusting as I found those banners, and the club has rightly acted on one thing and it is incumbent upon them I think to act on the other.

The charge of antisemitism is one of the most harmful and dangerous out there. When Ian Bankier made a similar, deranged allegation some years ago this blog condemned him in the strongest terms and said he was unfit to be the chairman of Celtic.

The backlash was enormous. He went some small way towards clarifying that statement later on, but I regarded it then and now as too little too late. The charge is odious. It is entirely false.

Celtic cannot let that go. Celtic must not let that go.

That is a slander on our whole club, not just the fans … the whole club. And from a serial recidivist who has poked his nose into Celtic’s business more than once. He is either deliberately smearing Celtic or he is woefully uninformed and either should draw a robust response from the club and a defence of our supporters.

In spite of having good cause, Celtic has spent the last week kicking Celtic fans.

This is the moment I think where it needs to stand up on their behalf … and that of the club as a whole.

I would have serious questions and concerns if we didn’t.

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  • Kevan McKeown says:

    Agree, our club should be takin this up right away. Challenge idiots like this, or anyone else makin such disgraceful and inaccurate generalizations. They have tae come out publicly and show that it won’t be tolerated.

  • goodghuy says:

    They should come out and stick up for the decent Celtic fans who don’t cause any trouble or hassle and just want to watch their team. Far left leaning is the same as far right, it’s racist and it antagonizes people. Not all Celtic fans are anti semitic, in fact the majority are just normal people who love their team. Celtic did the right thing getting rid of the trouble makers, I’m hoping going forward we will get our good name back . The green brigade were decent at the start, but now they are just hooligans and they can’t behave themselves.

    • Scouse bhoy says:

      Very few people in general are anti semitic this is the extreme right wing media propaganda in full swing. To protest against the israeli government has nothing to do with their religion. There are a lot of jews who despise the israeli government.

    • Roonsa says:

      Decent at the start? Hmmmmm. I don’t think so. They’ve always wanted to be the voice of Celtic fans. I mind during the Sevco free SPL years and the LL Stand had that big banner to cover all those unsold seats. The atmos inside the ground wasn’t great. And, aye, the GB helped by keeping the songs going. But woe betide anyone who tried to start their own wee song. That always resulted in them to being sung over by the GB. It didn’t really bother me that, at the time, much because they were making a noise and were there to support the team.

      I think the start of the “problem” was when Celtic made the decision to have the poppy embalzoned on the Celtic strip. That should never have happened, that was a disgraceful decision. And I agreed with the GB calling them out on it. However, for me, it was getting recognition in the media as a result of that which emboldened them. Since then, they’ve just been a self important shower of “look at me” embarassments.

      They think they’re politically minded. Yet, they know nothing about how to play politics. And, as has been stated in this blog, Celtic just gave them enough rope to hang themselves with and they gladly accepted it.

      I really don’t want to see them back. They just take up too many column inches.

  • Roonsa says:

    It’s hardly surprising that this has happened. This is 100% down to what the Green Brigade did and the timing of their banners in support of Palestine. There is no self awareness at all. I couldn’t tell you if there is an anti semitic bent on their viewpoint. I am one who does not equate not speaking out against the actions of Netanyahu and the Israeli govt to anti semitism. It’s a valid standpoint. But even, at that level, some will take the opposite view. What the Green Brigade did was crass and idiotic. And now Celtic fans, as a whole, are tarred with the same brush. We all hate Jews. I am not having that.

    You are 100% right. It’s up to Celtic to fix this. They were the ones who let the pricks in.

  • SSMPM says:

    They sure do. It seems fine for his terrorist state to indiscriminately and disproportionately murder over 10,000 Palestinians though. More I believe in a couple of weeks than Russia has in the whole of that conflict and which is so rightfully condemned. Right wing politics as is that of Netanyahu and his murderous regime is just fine though.
    Not forgetting of course the number of Jewish players we’ve signed at our club in recent years. The man’s a bampot nut-job and I couldn’t care less what he thinks.
    It does though show the negative connotations that we can be exposed to from such nut-jobs as a result of some our fans’ political flag waving and the impact that it has on our football club.
    I’d rather we kept right out of it and banned them all from Paradise, nationalist & terrorist organisation flags that is. Can we not simply take him to court & sue him? HH

  • SSMPM says:

    To clarify should read, than Russia has innocent civilians in the whole of that conflict

  • Frank says:

    and that’s what happens when the power brokers are slow to react. This whole GB nonsense should have been stepped on long ago. We now have the opposite corner of the ground backing the GB. Gawd gessa break. The board must not mess about now they want to get involved. This continual drip feed has to stop NOW. Lets get a clear out and get the decent fans sitting on the waiting list in these seats.
    A question how did we arrive at only 200 being banned. Also there was a Palestinian flag in the GB section last night (clear as day) an no movement to remove it. The clown behind Joe Harts goal with the green top who let off the green flare. nowt done!!!!!!

  • Jay says:

    As has been said by many many people. Politics needs to stay out of football & especially out of the gorund.
    No 2 Celtic fans will agree on everything on every level.
    The issue with the Green Brigade is they now no longer honour the club/players or legends they just want to drive leftest political narratives & if you don’t conform to there views you are wrong.
    Listening to Talksport yesterday & a member of the green brigade was on stating how if you don’t agree with what they say you’re not a true celtic fan. Absolute drivel!
    I understand the club was built in protest of opression but that was nearly 150 years ago! Remember our history but it doesn’t paint our future.

  • John S says:

    Those who know Celtic FC know that an allegation of anti-semitism is slanderous, however those outside the club looking in can see anti-semitism repeatedly in a very vocal section of the support, this was always the danger when politics infiltrated the stands. Yes, it was there but the club itself did not tolerate it and made its position clear. The club should be praised for taking what action it could.

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