What Jeremy Corbyn said – a reminder

“One antisemite is one too many, but the scale of the problem was also dramatically overstated for political reasons by our opponents inside and outside the party, as well as by much of the media. That combination hurt Jewish people and must never be repeated.”

Comments (17)

  • Edward Hill says:

    “What this investigation has shown is a clear breakdown of trust between the Labour Party, many of its members, and the Jewish community. ” The EHRC report follows the Labour Party report leaked in April 2020 in referring repeatedly to “the Jewish community”, as if only a single perspective ( as represented by the Board of Deputies and the Jewish Labour Movement?) existed. Jeremy Corbyn’s use of the plural term “Jewish communities” may be a first step to a belated recognition by him of the support he received from organisations like JVL in countering the “dramatically overstated scale of the problem. “

  • Dave Bradney says:

    EHRC report p27:
    “Article 10 [of the European Convention of Human Rights] will protect Labour Party members who, for example, make legitimate criticisms of the Israeli government, or express their opinions on internal Party matters, such as the scale of antisemitism within the Party, based on their own experience and within the law. It does not protect criticism of Israel that is antisemitic.”

  • Philip Horowitz says:

    Mr Corbyn mentions his determination “to eliminate all forms of racism and root out the cancer of antisemitism.” Why this confusing conjugation which is in fact quite often seen? If antisemitism is a form of racism, why does it alone need to be both eliminated and rooted out? An “especially” or “in particular” would be quite enough. If it is not, why not?

  • Dr ALAN MADDISON says:

    Who inside Labour would benefit from people still believing, wrongly, that antisemitism was rife in Labour, or that Corbyn was to blame?

  • RC says:

    Since the use of the phrase “the Jewish community” assumes that British Jews (indeed, Jews across the world pursuant to the IHRA notion of ”the Jewish people” therein alleged to have the right to determine its future in an unspecified area including but very far indeed from confined to the entirety of pre 1948 Palestine and the occupied Golan Heights) are of one mind and are represented by one authority (which is patently far from the truth and is in fact vigorously contested) the unqualified use of this phrase is antisemitic in Itself and both the EHRC and Sir Keir Starmer should immediately desist from its use, so as to avoid the charges considered in the EHRC report.
    A comparable but inverse criticism is to be made of the phrase “Jewish stakeholders” which is both so loose as to empower the LP through its leader and NEC to pick and choose between Jewish people and bodies; and also because of the implications of financial ownership, puts into play traditional antisemitic conceptions of Jewish ownership of gentile interests.

  • Alan Harrison says:

    I agree with Edward’s remarks about “the Jewish community”. I would add (as a moderately committed Anglican layman) that the notion of “the(religious adjective) community” by the left is highly questionable. I suspect that it stems from indifference/hostility to “the opium of the people” among many comrades, in unholy alliance with a wish to hoover up the votes of Jewish. Muslim, Sikh, etc. voters. Thus if a candidate for, say, Birmingham Small Heath can prose on about “the Muslim community”, s/he can keep quiet about not actually finding the teachings of Islam amenable. Conservative teachings about sexual morality can be an obvious sticking point.

    I also think that Starmer has made two mutually incompatible commitments in the course of his headlong retreat from any defence of the party against accusations of antisemitism. He has given the BoD a commitment to kick out anybody who speaks up for those expelled for antisemitism or an associated offence of “bringing the party into disrepute” . The BoD named specific “prominent” offenders, including Jackie Walker. Starmmer has also promised the EHRC to adopt its recommendations in full. This would need to include addressing the problems around disciplinary proceedings, which the EHRC rightly said were unfair to respondents, with a specific, albeit anonymised reference to Dr Walker’s case.

  • Nick Jenkins says:

    Jeremy Corbyn was, it seems, suspended by the Labour Party for telling what the party’s deputy leader admitted was the truth – that the scale of antisemitism in the party has been overstated.
    But surely it should now be the duty of everyone in the party to make that clear? We have heard a lot about the fear, distress and hurt caused to Jewish people by Labour antisemitism. This has been fuelled by those who, for malicious or factional reasons, have massively exaggerated the problem. How can we hope to reduce that fear, distress and hurt unless we help people to understand that this issue is far less of a threat than some people have led them to believe?
    To continue to maintain the untruth that a huge number of Labour members are antisemites is to prolong the pain caused to the very people we should be reassuring.

  • Rita Maire says:

    JC was right to say what he did and should be reinstated as soon as possible ✊

  • Ian Kemp says:

    I am not clear what Corbyn said re the report that is wrong. Starmer seems to me to playing to gallery for his own particular purposes.
    JLM, Board Of Deputies, CAA, LFI – none of them represent my views, nor that of many other Jewish people I know. So why is Starmer saying or implying it is all Jewish People, directly or indirectly? It is not. The Jewish Board of Deputies is mainly Tory not Labour. The Jewish Labour movement does not represent me. So what is going on here. JEREMY CORBYN MUST BE REINSTATED.

  • Valentin Kovalenko says:

    Since the antisemitism chutzpah against Corbyn started, I was approached by my non-Jewish colleagues, who asked about why WE JEWS SAY THINGS LIKE THIS, on more than one occasion. This question that was normally accompanied with anger came from people, who never expressed any anti-Jewish sentiment before. Some were not Labour voters. The situation whereby the BOD is perceived as the only voice for all UK Jews continues and the problem that I see is that this has never been challenged, properly. I have been very positive about Corbyn, I’ve never seen the BOD as representing me in any sense and, yet, I feel haunted by the real antisemitism that they triggered.

  • DJ says:

    The elephant in the room is the apartheid state of Israel. Starmer has described himself as a Zionist and has sought to ingratiate himself with the pro Israel advocacy groups who claim to represent the “Jewish community”. He has bought into their narrative by adopting the IHRA misdefinition of antisemitism. Labour differences on Palestine-Israel are real and can’t be denied. He is the one in denial of the real crisis which has nothing to do with antisemitism. The problem is all about the members who insist on supporting the state which has oppressed the Palestinians for over 70 years. It is their willingness to countenance systematic and institutional anti Palestinian racism that should be investigated. Jeremy Corbyn should not be in the dock for supporting Palestinians against their oppression. Being accused of antisemitism because you support the Palestinian cause is deeply offensive. The so called antisemitism crisis in the Labour Party is just a crude attempt to give the state of Israel a free pass to do what it likes at the expense of the indigenous people of the territory.

  • Allan Howard says:

    In his post Nick (Jenkins) says the following:

    ‘How can we hope to reduce that fear, distress and hurt unless we help people to understand that this issue is far less of a threat than some people have led them to believe?’

    In reality it was never a threat at all, and it was soley the plotters who transformed it in to a threat and created it out of thin air. But for the fact that Jeremy was leader, we wouldn’t have heard a word about Naz Shah’s post re Israel, and Ken would not of course then done a radio interview to defend her. And we wouldn’t have heard a word about Jackie Walker, because no-one would have made a fake and vexatious complaint about her. Twice!
    I don’t know how much media coverage it got, but AFTER he was suspended Jeremy qualified the point he made about the A/S problem being massively exaggerated and – alluding to the survey conducted for the authors of Bad News For Labour – he said the following, as reported in the Mirror:

    Mr Corbyn told Sky News: “The numbers have been exaggerated in my view. The public perception in an opinion poll last year was that a third of all Labour party members were under suspicion of anti-Semitism.

    “The reality is it was 0.3% of members has a case against them which had to be put through the process.”

    https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/politics/breaking-labour-suspends-jeremy-corbyn-22925298

  • Allan Howard says:

    In an article posted by JVL in January this year there’s a video clip of Marie van der Zyl taken from an interview she did with an Israeli news station in which she says that Jeremy Corbyn is spending more and more time with terrorists and extremists. Here’s what it says in the article:

    The video you’re watching in this post is from August 2018 and it’s of Marie Sarah van der Zyl, the current and 48th President of the Board of Deputies of British Jews. She’s being interviewed by i24News – a right wing Israeli news channel. In the interview, Van der Zyl claims, repeatedly, that Jeremy Corbyn had been “spending more and more time with terrorist and extremists” and “with people who threaten the security of Britain”.

    Needless to say it’s a whopping great Big Lie, and were there any truth to it the British media would have been all over it, as it seems HIGHLY unlikely they wouldn’t have been aware that he WAS, if he HAD been. And given that the British media DIDN’T report any such thing, then surely Marie van der Zyl could only have concluded that they HADN’T got to hear about it and, as such, informed them about it. But she didn’t. I wonder why not!

    And it is of course very strange that the person interviewing her didn’t think to ask her who these terrorists and extremists WERE!

    Needless to say, the reason they didn’t is because they knew that it was a Big Lie.

    What more proof does anyone need that the whole A/S thing was a smear campaign.

    https://www.jewishvoiceforlabour.org.uk/article/expose-who-are-the-board-of-deputies-of-british-jews/

  • Allan Howard says:

    Craig Murray posted the following on the day Jeremy was suspended:

    https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2020/10/time-to-stand-up-and-be-counted/

  • Allan Howard says:

    I just checked the CAAs website to see what they had to say about the EHRC report, and needless to say it’s a total distortion. The headline to the article is:

    EHRC report into antisemitism in the Labour Party

    Campaign Against Antisemitism referred the Labour Party to the EHRC because Jew-hatred under Corbyn was out of control. Here is everything you need to know.

    If it was out of control (which is of course just a Big Lie), then how is it that only two or three LP members were prosecuted and found guilty for such offences, and one of those was from BEFORE Jeremy became leader. And why – if the CAA and the JLM and LAA et al – REALLY believed that Ken Livingstone and Jackie Walker and Chris Williamson said something anti-semitic, how come none of these groups reported them to the police. It doesn’t add up of course!

    Needless to say, the CAA is well aware that when Jennie Formby began her tenure as General Secretary, the very first thing she did was to completely over-haul the process and speed it up, and yet Gideon Falter says the following: “For five miserable years, every effort to compel Labour to reform failed.” And he goes on to say that THAT is why they – the CAA – had to report the LP to the EHRC.

    Funny how the CAA (and JLM) waited until July 2018 before making a complaint to the EHRC, just four months after Jennie Formby took up the position of GS, and just TWO months afer she announced that she had completely over-hauled the disciplinary process regards dealing with A/S complaints.

    On the day she took up the position as GS on April the 3rd 2018, Jennie sent an email to every single LP member in which she said the following:

    This week I will be moving to ensure the full implementation of the Chakrabarti report and introducing new procedures to deal with complaints and disciplinary cases.

    Within a matter of a couple of months at the end of May, she announced that the whole disiplinary process for dealing with A/S complaints had been over-hauled and that there was a completely new process in place, as reported by Skwawkbox at the time:

    ‘Formby’s impressive new disciplinary process gives cause for confidence’

    https://skwawkbox.org/2018/05/30/formbys-impressive-new-disciplinary-process-gives-cause-for-confidence/

    Two months later on 31st July 2018, Campaign Against Antisemitism formally referred the Labour Party to the EHRC (it then took the EHRC a further ten months to decide that it was going to begin a formal investigation, and it then took them a futher sixteen months to complete their investigation and publish their report, whilst all the while the ‘moderates’ via the MSM endlessly reiterated the fact that the LP was being investigated by the EHRC, along with the Jewish newspapers and the CAA and the JLM et al).

  • Doug says:

    The internal report finished anything the EHRC could fit Labour up for and blew out of the water those who filed complaints
    Would be good to put up a list of their complaints alongside the outcomes, which was zero, nothing, nada, nowt, zip
    Truth Defence are challenging what little was decided and others will hopefully give us our day in court, to finally bring down the AS Scam

  • Paul Crowther says:

    Nick Jenkins says it so clearly.
    The dramatic overstating of the scale of antisemitism in Labour affects people negatively in different ways. For many, it will be as Nick indicates; they believe the overstatement and are unnecessarily fearful. Others recognise the exaggeration and are deeply hurt by their Jewishness being used by the political class as a “factional battering ram”, as @BarnabyRaine described it on Newsnight recently.
    https://twitter.com/Martin_Abrams/status/1321958486008365061?s=20

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