Reinstate Corbyn, defend our movement

Jeremy Corbyn addressing a mass rally. Photo: Labour Party

Jeremy Corbyn’s suspension is an attack on the Left

 

The decision to suspend Jeremy Corbyn from membership of our party will come to be regretted even by those who made it.

The EHRC Report, and especially what it leaves out, needs and will eventually receive, the critical scrutiny it deserves. One regrettable effect of the leadership’s ruthless action against Corbyn has been to deflect and detract from the attention that the Report should be receiving.

The demand that Corbyn repudiate his own response to the deeply flawed EHRC document could only have been made in the certainty that he could not accede to it. Our party should abhor such manoeuvres.

The Corbyn leadership’s attempts to implement the recommendations in the Chakrabarti Report, aimed at improving the complaints and disciplinary system, were repeatedly blocked by then General Secretary Iain McNicol. The party’s handling of complaints of antisemitism has been an undoubted shambles, lacking all natural justice and due process. But this was primarily due to the behaviour of  those staff members whose destructive actions and inactions were exposed in the leaked report on the workings of the Governance and Legal Unit. It is a major weakness of the EHRC inquiry that it did not examine the evidence on which the leaked report was based, so clearly central to its own investigations.

 

Never before has commenting on a published report been regarded as inappropriate and unacceptable, and yet it is on this basis, for his observations about the scale of antisemitism in the party, that Jeremy Corbyn has been suspended.

 

The EHRC Report itself says that “Article 10 [of the Equality Act 2010] 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” [our emphasis]. And not only that: “Statements made by elected politicians have enhanced protection under Article 10. “

 

It is the current leadership, not Jeremy Corbyn, that is diminished by its vindictive action against him. Over the years of his party leadership Jeremy was targeted in a campaign of denigration unprecedented in modern British politics. Now he continues to be targeted on the most spurious grounds because he insists on stating a number of important truths: that anti-Jewish racism in the party exists and should be rigorously opposed; that, thankfully, its scale in the party is limited; that its extent has been exaggerated; and that this has been harmful to the party and to Jews. He stated clearly:

“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.”

In taking these positions, he has the respect and support of most Labour members, who know him for a man of principle and probity. They also know that the decision to suspend him presages the threat of action against all who were inspired by the promise of a Labour Party genuinely committed to standing up against privilege, inequality and injustice.

JVL stands with the tens of thousands of Labour Party members demanding that the leadership reinstate Jeremy Corbyn and cease its campaign of silencing against those who share his political vision.

Comments (62)

  • jwilson says:

    Excellent 🙂

  • Barry ryan says:

    Jeremy or bust.
    Fuck with us. You lose us.

  • DJ says:

    Well said JVL. The Labour Party is not institutionally antisemitic. The vast majority of its membership oppose racism including antisemitism. Corbyn spoke the truth. “Shame” on the right of the party and the MSM for this blatant “put up job”. Resist this appalling character assassination of Jeremy Corbyn and demand justice for members wrongly accused of antisemitism!

  • Kuhnberg says:

    Starmer has boxed himself into a corner. He has taken ‘Strike while the iron is hot’ too literally, and has only scotched the left, not killed it. And remember, revenge is a dish best eaten cold.

    Murmurings against Starmer are legion, and his media defenders look increasingly desperate and shify. Outlets like The Guardian do their best to create a hostile environment for the left, but two days ago, when I managed by sleight of hand to get a pro-Corbyn comment to stay up below the lne on their website, it attracted 350 likes.

    The supporters are there, but their voices are being suppressed. Sooner or later they will make themselvs heard.

  • NIGEL HAINES says:

    Pleased to see that there are honourable people left such as the JVL.

  • John Bowley says:

    Well said, JVL. We look forward to further critical analysis.

    Unlike so many nowadays, JVL makes the effort to be correct and truthful.

  • Peter Wingate says:

    I applaud. the JVL and this statement, and wish to thank them for it. It shows a rational and thoughtful approach to both the EHRC, report, Mr Corbyn’ response to it, and valid criticisme of the EHRC repertory and the Labour Parties leaderships, outrageous responce to Mr Corbyn’s ‘truth telling’ by suspending and removing the ‘whip’.

  • hilary blair says:

    It is time to stop the witch hunts. Corbyn has worked hard throughout his whole career to be just and fair. It is time to reinstate him

  • Steve Morris says:

    Someone said that searching for antisemitism in the Labour Party and not in the Conservative Party is not attacking antisemitism but Labour.

  • Andrew Local says:

    There is a subtle irony where an ex leader of the party, renouned for his denouncement of racism in all forms is suspended by a new leader who used to defend human rights and forced his party to abstain in a vote which allows people to kill in the name of the state.

  • Abul Hashim Bhuiyan says:

    We are against the suspension for Corvyn which is base less allegation about antisemitism . We urged the labour leadership to remove the suspension. It’s better for the Labour Party.

  • Nazaleen Mohaned says:

    I am with JC.

  • Doug says:

    EHRC report
    Good news for those involved in legal action, the evidence is out there in broad daylight
    Make hay and give us our day in court

  • Helena Foss says:

    So important to take a stand against such blatant injustice.
    “You can fool some people sometimes but you can’t fool all the people all the time.”

  • Jean Watson says:

    #IStandWithJeremyCorbyn #WeAreCorbyn Solidarity Jeremy we stand with you side by side always. We will not be silenced truth and justice will prevail #StarmerOut #EvansOut

  • Iris Dove says:

    I really wish that your voice were heard by the general public. The media is able to promote only one Jewish voice which gives the impression it speaks for all. It is easy for well meaning liberal/lefty gentiles to think there is no Jewish support for Corbyn. If it wasn’t for the fact that I have socialist friends who are Jewish I would not be aware of the divisions. They have found the one-sided view portrayed in the media upsetting and have informed me about your organisation.

  • DJ says:

    Starmer talks a good game on the the MSM about “unity” and not wanting a civil war. The problem is, his actions prove that he has sided with the likes of the BoD, CAA, JLM. and Labour defectors and saboteurs. He is clearly an establishment politician who pays lip service to the progressive policies that Jeremy Corbyn advocated. If he is allowed to get away with this purge of the left all of these policies will be ditched. If you joined the Labour Party because you were inspired by Corbyn’s leadership, it’s time to stand up and be counted. There is no honourable compromise with the right. They are determined to make the party acceptable to the “few”. This means reducing it to an agent of the establishment. Let’s make sure this doesn’t happen. It’s time to resist!

  • James Hall says:

    Unlike the writers of the preceding comments, I am delighted at Corbyn’s suspension – it will serve to concentrate minds, something very much needed at present.

  • Geoff Rouse says:

    It is a sad fact that I have not left the Labour Party it has left me. It died when the anti socialist Starmer backstabbed his way into the leadership. Let’s all work towards a new Labour Party now.

  • Kate Adams says:

    Thank you

  • Kate Adams says:

    Thank you for your erudite and humane response. Jeremy Corbyn is being made an example of to justify a purge of socialists in the Labour Party.

  • Alan Jenkins says:

    You don’t suspend someone for telling the truth. How foolish of you. How can people vote for a Party that is led by people who defend racist and genocidal policy in the Holy Land. What kind of an obscene scarring of human values is this? This is not anti-semitic to observe these facts, it’s human nature to value the truth and speak out on its substance and it’s place in society. Jeremy Corbyn is not anti-semitic, he is what a decent human being should be.

  • Cyril Rhodes says:

    This man is not guilty!

  • Mary Davies says:

    We must defend Jeremy to the end of the earth. Some people don’t know a decent man when the see one.

  • Tom Reed says:

    THANK YOU to Jewish Voice for Labour for making this Statement. It feels to me that OUR Labour Party has been stolen from me by carpetbaggers and charlatans. I’m so tempted to leave after over 40 year’s membership, but I guess that’s just what they want, so I won’t. But it’s hard against this incredible McCarthyite witch hunt. Terrified that saying what I think will get me expelled. Things have come to a sad pass.

  • Much like Assange, the persecution of Corbyn is a massive miscarriage of truth and decency. He must be reinstated to the Labour Party now and have the Whip restored.

  • Sarah Pipkin says:

    It is heartwarming to see Jewish Voice for Labour making a stand for right and decency, as can only be expected from just and honourable folk.

  • George Hawes says:

    Thank you, as always, for your sensible, balanced, and reasoned response.
    Corbyn’s dignified response to the EHRC report did no more than politely state the obvious, while restating his own implacable opposition to all forms of discrimination. Good luck in your continuing efforts to resist the weaponisation of U.K. Judaism by the political right and the blindly uncritical supports of the present Government of Israel.

  • Laurence Harvey says:

    This is an establishment issue to smear Jeremy Corbyn

  • ruby lescott says:

    We must fight Jeremy’s suspension, but beyond the case of his suspension is the even more sinister growing curb on what we may and may not discuss at meetings. First was the ban on discussion of the Panorama people payout, now the ban on discussion of the EHRC report. If the left were in control and tried that it would be called Stalinism. This creeping control of the membership from above must be challenged.

  • Shanthie Wild says:

    This or a fuller statement needs to be sent to the editor of every local newspaper in the country.

  • Jacqueline says:

    Jeremy Corbyn has served the Labour party for 30 years he has being fighting against bigotry and discrimination, for justice and equality for a lot longer, shame on the cowards who would throw such disgusting faulshoods to take him down, and pity on all those who have such blissful ignorance to believe it.

  • Aneurin Wynne nyDavies says:

    JVL you are all magic, let’s march this together and make the tens of thousands into tens of hundreds of thousands of good people who find what they are doing an abhorrence unprecedented 😀🌹👍.

  • Mr James Leslie Thompson says:

    Congratulations to JVL members for your support of a man of principle,integrity and honour, I applaud you for your defence of Mr Corbyn and the truth.

  • Rita Walker says:

    How on earth can Kier Starmer justify this decision.I have sat and read a beautiful letter from Kay a Jewish lady who is also disgusted with this. She spoke about all the good work he has done with the Jewish Community and she and others have said not a bad word leaves his mouth.And we has Labour members agree with her statement. What I would like to know can we ask if fully paid up members can lodge an appeal. Kier Starmer has no idea what a true leader is about. It is about listening to members does he not have the balls to apologise to us for this injusticed treatment of Jeremy because we all well not forget this. BUT REMEMBER WE ALL HAVE A VOICE AND A VOTE . On Andrew Marr show today he came across has a mini Boris My way or no way I am the Leader. The hypothetical baboon. Do I wait to get expelled now.

  • Dan says:

    Shouldn’t our values and relationships with fellow beings be shaped and governed by compassion and, where possible, empathy: not by our race, religion or political preference?
    If you’re struggling to know who is being truthful and unbiased then please allow one simple message to guide you. Let it transcend these arenas of possible conflict, LOVE THY NEIGHBOUR

  • Julie Hope says:

    Jeremy has fought against all racism his entire life. He had been the moral conscience of the Labour Party. He must be reinstated.

  • Marcus Graham says:

    Thank you JVL, as a non-Jewish Labour supporter, I’ve had many insults, the most hurtful I’ve been likened to a 1930s Nazi, for my continued support of Corbyn and for saying i think he has been treated unfairly by the party.
    The subject has become taboo, it feels criminal to debate, the insults and abuse many of us have recieved for defending the integrity and voting for a clearly, wonderful human being i find abhorrent.
    ‘The left’ should not be vilified, it stands against fascism of all kinds, but also stands for human rights and the freedom of fair opinion and debate, this conflict must end.

  • Linda p says:

    Thank you once again JVL for speaking out for justice. It is very telling that you and many other Jewish Corbyn supporters are not heard in the msm. On the day jeremy was suspended it was only on Channel 4 news that a Jewish supporter of jeremy was interviewed. The state of our msm is worrying indeed.

  • Joy McMahon says:

    Exactly!

  • Anthony Chiverton says:

    Reinstate jermeny corbyn.
    The new leadership seems to be run by a dictatorship, it’s an absolute disgrace, that such an honorable man who has fought all his life ,should now be denigrated in such a manner.
    Is your intention to end the labour party .

  • Christina Evans says:

    You are the organization that represents truth. It feels like the world has gone mad with the demonisation of a good honest decent man. Well done JVL I wish too though everybody knew that you are jewish voice for labour not the Jewish labour movement. Has a poll ever been done amongst Jewish labour supporters to see what they think. As Starmer keeps saying Jewish people feel Jeremy Corbyn is their enemy. I am sure this is not the case.

  • Ian Kemp says:

    Excellent JVL,,, It is time to challenge the misinformation and lies. The MSM only publishes, The Bigots and sycophants. The Guardian and The Observer our so called left leaning liberal papers are a very biased and a big disappointment. You have opinions being portrayed as factual by the likes of Freedland and a disgusting article by Andrew Rawnsley in The Observer On Sunday. What utter nonsense this vilification of a descent man, by these so called journalists. They are supposed do research look at all sides and produce total biased nonsense.
    We have the most one sided press in Europe. It is not helpful and very depressing.
    Jeremy Corbyn must be reinstated.

  • Maria Flanagan says:

    A man of truth compassion and honesty who has stood for equality of all races. His Jewish friends defend his name.

  • Malcolm Segall says:

    I agree with everything JVL says in its concise and trenchant statement. Jeremy must be reinstated.

  • Jim Driscoll says:

    Hear hear. My local party has an online meeting tonight at which an emergency motion in support of Corbyn is to be discussed. I hope the response of the bulk of the membership is such as to show Starmer he is wrong when he says he has our support in this matter.

  • Jim Denham says:

    The EHRC has served an Unlawful Act Notice on the Labour Party. The Labour Party has until 5.00pm on 10th December to provide the EHRC with the first draft of an Action Plan which implements the EHRC report’s recommendations. The EHRC gets to decide whether (the first draft of) the Action Plan is adequate. Not the Labour Party. Not a CLP. If the draft plan is not adequate, or not provided, the EHRC can initiate legal proceedings. That really doesn’t leave much room for debate.

    Ignoring 99.99% of the EHRC report, some of JC’s defenders (including JVL) have seized upon two sentences which they think gives him a clean bill of health. (The same two sentences that Swawkbox has homed in on.) Had they got as far as p. 110 of the EHRC report, they would have discovered that it’s all a bit more complicated. (Although, in Pat Bromley’s case, she argued that antisemitism allegations were a fabrication to smear Corbyn, whereas Corbyn ‘merely’ says that they have been exaggerated to smear him.) In any case, the two sentences in question relate to whether an unlawful act has been committed by the Labour Party by virtue of the conduct of an agent of the Labour Party (be it Pat Bromley, Ken Livigstone or Jeremy Corbyn.) They have nothing to do with internal Labour Party disciplinary procedures (unless you think that a person can only be suspended from the Labour Party if their conduct reaches the threshold of an unlawful act).

    The EHRC has carried out an investigation. It has produced a report. It has made a number of ‘recommendations’, which the Labour Party must, by law, by virtue of the Unlawful Act Notice, implement. Some people don’t seem to understand the status of an EHRC investigation and report.

    Are people saying that Jeremy Corbyn should be allowed to ignore and deny the EHRC report and its findings and the entire Labour Party membership should be allowed to ignore and deny the EHRC Report and its findings?
    Are you really saying: “Jeremy has done nothing wrong/antisemitism is wildly exaggerated” and the EHRC report and equality law should be defied

  • I have a great sense of Jeremy Corbyn’s persona he is always polite even when goaded beyond comprehension.He is a gentleman and deserves better than being hounded in this way by people whom I would call bullies.

  • Philip Barlow says:

    I for one would welcome a split and a new party and leave the Red Tory’s to Labour they have been suppressing genuine socialists since Kinnock.

  • Jo Dominich says:

    Yes, he was subjected to what can only be described as the most sustained, vitriolic Hate Campaigns against a politician in UK Parliamentary history. How he stayed focussed on the Election is astonishing. He is a man of great fortitude and courage. And now this from Starmer. Hate campaign again. If Jeremy was from a minority group these campaigns would be called Hate Campaigns and be challengeable in Law.

  • Lungile Nkosi-Hill says:

    Thank you for your truth and to speak up.
    To be silence is to be complicit.
    Continue to fight for, truth, equality, justice, no more wars, and human rights for all.

  • Mr Simeon R Hope says:

    Last December was the first time I voted Labour (instead of Green), on the strength of JC’s policies and his personal integrity. To see shortly afterwards from the leaked report that the party’s staff were actively working against a Labour victory and hindering his work to stop anti-Semites meant that it was a fraudulent election. And now this EHRC report, from an organisation that refused to examine the vast evidence of Islamophobia in the Tory party, and Jeremy’s suspension. It doesn’t give me any reason to vote Labour again, does it? Mind you, the Greens are just as bad with their adoption of the IHRA definitions of anti-Semitism. What kind of a democracy is this, anyway?

  • Roger Luffman says:

    Thank you for this JVL. I have read the report and the thing that came across to me was historical bad administration, and who was General Secretary then? One Iain McNichol

  • Mark Inch says:

    As an ex-Islington North resident, I’m aware of Corbyn’s work to support the Jewish community, from rallying against far-right antisemitism in Wood Green, to cleaning antisemitic graffiti off of Finsbury Park Synagogue. His suspension will not undo the years of community activism he performed to support working-class Jewish people.

    The Jewish community will always have a place in the Labour Party and my country.

  • Gail pozniak says:

    I am shocked and saddened ,that Jewish members of the Labour Party have stooped so low as to accuse him, of be personally antisemitic.All his life he has fought against all forms of rasism. Shame on them all.And all those that go along with this.

  • Steph Wyatt says:

    I support and commend JVL for continuing to speak out . We MUST continue the fight and pressure for socialist voices to be heard in the mainstream media. So glad Owen Jones wrote his excellent account from inside Westminster in the build up to 2019 election. Appalling treachery from WITHIN the party to an elected leader.

  • Jo Peers says:

    JVL you are spot on. I hope your statement will be passed to all the MSM. So sick of hearing only one point of view, as if all Jewish people think the same way about Labour and Corbyn when this is clearly not the case.

  • Robin Learoyd says:

    Keir Starmer is not my leader!

  • RC says:

    Corbyn’s comment that the extent of AS in the LP has been exaggerated is no more than the truth, as confirmed by the Pew poll cited in “Bad News for Labour”. Jim Denham may huff and puff as much as he likes, but he cannot plausibly pretend that the 0.3% of LP members charged with AS is as large as the 34% of the membership whom the British public mistakenly believe/d are guilty of AS. They have been misled by the propaganda of the MSM, so-called JLM, BoD etc. (Even Angela Rayner has dared to confirm the obvious truth of Corbyn’s remark).
    LP members, whose experience contradicts the crass lies of the Panorama ‘whistleblowers’ who for example claimed to encounter antisemitic acts everyday at LP meetings, just resent these libels – and would have preferred to see them refuted in court. They also detest the frivolous use of the IHRA so-called definition of AS to create a moral panic which has harassed many British Jews.
    As for Corbyn’s alleged responsibility for the presence or alleged growth in AS in the LP, even the EHRC report discloses (unwillingly no doubt) that the majority of political intervention in AS disciplinary procedures served to increase. not reduce, pressure on respondents. ( pp 41-3; Seumas Milne was on record as voicing concern at the disproportionate singling out of left wing Jews for charges of AS). The manoeuvres by which the report attempts to depict as protecting AS the surrender to the lynch mob which overturned the acquittal, and High Court vindication, of Chris Williamson are a master class in disingenuousness (p46, 78). The overall burden of the description of the shambolic character of the disciplinary procedures, political intervention and all, shows no overall tendency to discriminate against Jews or AS complainants – if anything the reverse. Yet on pp 55-6 the EHRC deduces from this shambles, politically nudged in general in favour of AS complainants, that it led to systematic discrimination against Jews complaining of AS. (p 55: last complete paragraph but 2 – “more or less leniently”). The shambles was ‘an equal opportunities shambles’.

  • Zahirul Haque says:

    This is a veryvpowerful supporting message from JVL.

  • Glynis Walker says:

    Yes Jeremy Corbyn’s suspension is an attack on the left

  • DJ says:

    RC. Well said. You have saved me from having to respond to Jim Denham who seems to think the EHRC report is credible. Not only that, he thinks we should not defend Jeremy Corbyn. It would appear, that he thinks we should accept a report produced by an establishment body which the MSM and Starmer claim brings shame on the party and by inference Jeremy Corbyn. Sad to see that some of the left appear to have “lost the plot”

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