CST Goes Through The Looking Glass

JVL Introduction

Zelo Street has published a brief evaluation of the latest CST, much trumpeted in MS, with its claim that there is an “Engine of Hate” behind Labour’s “antisemitism crisis”.

This report, based on Shaun Lawson’s tweeted analysis, shows how thin – and conspiratorial – this thesis is. It brings no credit to the CST.

Shaun Lawson’s full twitter thread follows the article below.

This article was originally published by Zelo Street on Sun 4 Aug 2019. Read the original here.

CST Goes Through The Looking Glass

The Community Security Trust has done excellent work over the years, both in protecting Jewish communities in the UK, and educating the wider population on the continuing threat from anti-Semitism. So it has been both baffling and disappointing to see it produce a report which effectively claims the “Labour Party’s anti-Semitism crisis” has some kind of conspiracy behind it. It calls the apparent conspiracy the “Engine of Hate”.

At the very outset, those it claims are part of this “Engine” are cast as “online networks”, and the report contains several diagrams not-really-hinting at links between them. It is the kind of nudge-and-wink that, were it written about people who are Jewish, would be condemned as anti-Semitic, and rightly so. It is a bizarre exposition.

One Tweeter has pointed this out: “This is the most bizarre report and this dubbing of Twitter accounts as interconnected and in some sort of ‘engine room’ is disingenuous and full of holes … By suggesting that there is some sort of mechanical operation gives this whole narrative a whole new meaning. That a number of different and entirely unrelated or connected accounts could be working together suggests some sort of conspiracy”.

Shaun Lawson has looked at the CST report and found it wanting. “I’ve just browsed through the report. I’m startled by what I found. The report claims to have identified 36 Twitter accounts responsible for propagating antisemitism. And, to be fair to it, it does highlight at least some antisemitic tweets and accounts”. There is more.

Yet it’s also done the most extraordinary thing. In effect, the CST have come up with a new definition of antisemitism …The CST appear to be suggesting that you’re ‘antisemitic’ if you’ve: 1. Angrily criticised Rachel Riley … 2. Angrily criticised Tom Watson … 3. Used the hashtag GTTO (Get The Tories Out) … 4. Referred to what al-Jazeera exposed in their film, The Lobby … 5. Criticised Luciana Berger”. Yes, really.

He gives this summary. “Far and away the worst thing the report does is accuse those who’ve highlighted: 1. That Labour’s ‘antisemitism crisis’ has been openly weaponised for political gain … 2. That a great deal of it is indeed a smear, because it’s not backed up by these awkward things called facts … Of antisemitism. Outrageous and disgraceful. What the report’s authors need to account for is: 1. Why antisemitism has been repeatedly found to be considerably LOWER on the left than on the right … 2. Why it’s been found to have FALLEN on the left since Corbyn became leader”. And his conclusion?

The final bullet point in CST’s mission statement is as follows: ‘To speak responsibly at all times, without exaggeration or political favour, on antisemitism and associated issues’ … Folks: from a British Jew and grandson of a Holocaust survivor… you could’ve fooled me”.

And one Tweeter who the CST included without any evidence to do so has told them “I said NOTHING antisemitic. I can support my views on [Luciana] Berger with evidence. I’d like my tweet removed and my account name redacted from this reply which had NOTHING to do with me”. There may be others.

Worst of all is the inference that the Labour Party is somehow involved, but it is not. It is difficult to see what the CST’s report hopes to achieve. Other then smearing Labour.

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Here is the full Twitter thread

Click on the images to enlarge:


Comments (3)

  • Philip Ward says:

    The day before all this was reported, the Guardian gave prominence to a claim by the MP for Tooting, Rosena Allin-Khan, that she received antisemitic tweets for lobbying Israeli government officials on behalf of Palestinian children in Israeli hospitals. Although the tweets amounted to strong, even rude, political criticism, none of the examples given were antisemitic. Once again, the idea that Israel is synonymous with Jews is one propagated by zionists and their supporters – such as the Guardian – and it is this lumping of all Jews together that is in fact antisemitic. Rosena Allin-Khan needs to be made aware of this fact.

    I personally don’t think the MP should have been attacked for what she has done. I’m sure lots of labour MPs tried to lobby the South African government to try to get Mandela released, or for an enquiry into Steve Biko’s murder and it’s part of their job. However, I also think the vehemence with which Allin-Khan has been attacked is a product of the toxic atmosphere stoked by the supporters of Israel. Describing critics of her as antisemitic is not likely to protect her from further verbal abuse.


    I would suggest that it is CST who are the “engine of hate ” towards 36 people, the majority have done nothing wrong. Yet they have been ” lynched” in the media and stigmatised as antisemitic or enablers of antisemitism.

    This has gone too far – lives have been put at risk by such reports – including that of Jeremy Corbyn. Do certain lives not matter for these authors, cynically inciting such hatred? Do they not realise what they are doing?

  • Linda Edmondson says:

    Two weeks ago Nick Cohen published one of his crazy pieces in the Observer, this time deriding the ‘noble savage’ myth that he alleges the Left (i.e. Corbyn) adheres to. His immediate target was Shraga Stern (the Charedi who met Corbyn recently in Parliament, to Margaret Hodge’s disgust). I don’t think I’ve ever seen such an outrageously antisemitic outburst in a decent newspaper as Cohen’s description of Stern : ‘And what a Jew! With his Yiddish accent, black clothes, beard and ringlets,Stern looks like a caricature from the 18th century…’ I sent the Guardian a disgusted letter, but predictably it wasn’t published (possibly because I hadn’t seen the article until this week and the Graun doesn’t like old news). I’d be interested to know whether anyone has seen letters complaining about the article. Compared with this outburst, most of the ‘antisemitic’ tweets catalogued by the CST are of no significance.

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