FAO The Chief Executive
Central Manchester University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
Cobbett House
Manchester Royal Infirmary
Oxford Road
Manchester M13 9WL

Dear Sir,

I understand that the above talk by Ms Miri Weingarten of Physicians for Human Rights – Israel, was cancelled at short notice. Furthermore, I am told pressure was brought to bear upon you by the Zionist Central Council.

I have stood with the Palestinian people in their torment for these last 8 years and I know their suffering intimately. A fragment is carried on the web site of Dove and Dophin, the charity I founded and on my own web site.

As humans we must hear the truth. I know Miri Weingarten; she would have told the truth. Her country of birth and residence would not have emerged from her talk as being kind and just to the people it displaced and occupied. She would have told, for instance, how the sickest people – with tumours for example, are interrogated by Shin Bet at the Beit Hanoun ‘crossing’. If they do do not agree to collaborate in various ways then they are sent back to their poor homes to perish without adequate treatment. This is recorded clearly by PHR-I, based on affidavits in large part. It is her human duty to speak up and I salute her.

Supposing a courageous German had come to these shores in 1943 to speak of the suffering of Jews, Poles, Roma and ‘communists’. Would pleas from Himmler’s department have caused the Governor of the great Manchester Royal Infirmary to close ranks against the bearer of truth? You have considered why the ZCC is bullying you perhaps? Does it want silence for crimes committed? Silence is complicity.

I note the name of your headquarters. William Cobbett, whose works I know well, will be turning in his grave. Shame.

For truth, reason and justice

David Halpin FRCS

The trust’s reply:

Dear Mr Halpin

Many thanks for your e-mail.

Central Manchester University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust took no part in the organisation of this meeting and was only informed that it was taking place shortly beforehand.

The individual who had organised the meeting was seen following an executive decision not to allow the meeting to take place on Trust premises for safety and security reasons. This was as a result of communications received by the Trust.

Best wishes.

Communications Unit
Central Manchester University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

David Halpin’s commentry on the reply:

‘no part in the organisation’ ‘The individual’ – ? a consultant physician from a neighbouring ”trust”

‘for safety and security reasons’ ‘result of communications’

The hollow words of totalitarian drift. Can we conclude the ‘communications’ were sufficiently threatening that ‘safety and security’ were threatened.

The event organiser’s response

Dear David

Thank you for forwarding this. It is exactly the kind of drivel that everyone is receiving. We can’t accept this.

I’ve attached below (in bold) the full story of what happened. Apologies if you have this already.

With specific regard to their pathetic email:

  • it’s nonsensical for them to claim that CMFT had nothing to do with the talk. While I was in charge of Miri’s day in Manchester, it was (at my request) a consultant physician and endocrinologist at MRI who booked the lecture theatre at my request. The title and details of the talk were disclosed to the education centre and no objection was raised then. Unfortunately, I’m not at liberty to disclose the name of that particular physician. What I can add is that he was told by management that the talk could not go ahead to avoid ‘trouble’.
  • also, by suggesting this, are they implying that anyone can walk off the street and book the MRI’s main lecture theatre? One would assume not. And if they do wish to distance themselves from the talk, why did they step in and interfere with its organization once an external force voiced an objection? The truth is that whatever they say, it was an MRI talk organized by a senior member of staff and courtesy and common sense would dictate that management facilitated it.
  • the most appalling thing for me is that rather than examine the content of the talk and discuss the issues with the organizer and the speaker in the context of the objections, the trust pulled the plug at a few hours notice. As it wasn’t the organizers deciding to cancel but the trust, the latter should have at least had the courtesy to attempt to contact Miri. They left a bad taste in the mouth of the 100+ people who attended (and those who didn’t make it to the alternative venue) and the whole thing has snowballed into a scandal which leaves CMFT looking ridiculous. Even from their point of view, it hasn’t been worth it.

As I’ve said to Brian, it may be worthwhile pointing out that it’s already in the press and has the potential to escalate further.