Anti-Semitism? It’s Israel, stupid!
Tony Greenstein responds to the false accusations made against him as part of the rightwing-driven witch-hunt. This is an edited version of his submission to Labour’s national constitutional committee
Binyamin Netanyahu and Donald Trump: on Israel’s ‘separation wall’
It is an outrage that I am facing a series of accusations by people whose identity has been kept hidden. It means that I am unable to question or cross-examine them. There is no court of law where this would be allowed. Charles I’s Star Chamber was abolished in 1641. Its successor in the Labour Party is still sitting. It is contrary to all notions of natural justice that you do not know who your accusers are. Evidence against me is redacted. The fact that the national constitutional committee (NCC) is happy to go along with this charade demonstrates that it is too kind by half to call them a kangaroo court. The kangaroo is an inoffensive animal.
Despite having been suspended for 20 months - itself an outrage - and 17 months having elapsed since my investigation hearing, I was given just four weeks to prepare a response to a 189-page bundle, despite being notified by email whilst recovering in hospital. The practices of the NCC and its patsy of a chair who made these rulings demonstrate that the NCC is a rubber stamp. The NCC is too gutless even to reveal their own names!
I emailed back asking for further time in view of the long wait before being charged. Despite providing medical evidence and informing them that I had to care for a disabled son, my request for an adjournment was refused. No reason was given. The refusal of the chair of the NCC to agree to a postponement demonstrates that, for this miserable cipher for Iain McNicol, the hearing of these charges is a mere formality. A verdict has already been reached.
If anyone wants to understand what my expulsion from the Labour Party is about, they only need to note the fact that McNicol was the hero of the Labour Friends of Israel fringe meeting at conference. LFI’s platform included Mark Regev, Israel’s ambassador and a former spokesman for Netanyahu. In which role he was an apologist for war crimes, including the machine-gunning of four Palestinian children on the Gaza beach. This is what the fight against ‘anti-Semitism’ involves.
My proposed expulsion from the Labour Party has nothing to do with anti-Semitism and everything to do with anti-Zionism and opposition to Israel, the world’s only apartheid state. When I first became politically active in 1970 it was in opposition to the campaign against the South African Springbok tour of Britain. It is ironic that I am now being penalised by the Labour Party for opposing the world’s only remaining apartheid state.
On November 28 Mandla Mandela, the grandson of Nelson Mandela, after a visit to the West Bank was reported as saying that “Israel is the worst apartheid regime ... Palestinians are being subjected to the worst version of apartheid.” It is in defence of this regime that the NEC is seeking to expel Jackie Walker and me, as it tried to do with professor Moshé Machover recently.
Jewish anti-Zionists are seen by Zionism in exactly the same way as white opponents of South African apartheid were seen: traitors to kith and kin. It is a matter of deep shame that the NEC has allowed Labour’s unelected compliance unit under McNicol to do the bidding of Israel’s racist supporters in the Jewish Labour Movement and LFI.
My expulsion is being proposed because I have criticised the JLM, which describes the Israeli Labor Party as its “sister party”. Yet there is no difference between Likud and the ILP when it comes to anti-Arab racism. The ILP’s previous leader, Isaac Herzog, declared that his nightmare was waking up to find that Israel had a Palestinian prime minister and 61 Palestinian knesset members. Herzog also declared that he wanted to dispel the false impression that the ILP were “Arab lovers”. Imagine if someone said that their nightmare was to wake up and find Britain had a Jewish prime minister or that the Labour Party was not a ‘Jew lovers’ party. These terms used to be part of the discourse of the National Front and British National Party.
I was suspended on March 18 2016 for comments I was alleged to have made. No detail was provided as to the nature of these comments and my requests for information went unanswered. It is telling that none of the charges against me relate to comments made before I was suspended. In other words I was targeted first and then a search was made for evidence.
On April 2 The Times and The Daily Telegraph both ran stories concerning my suspension. Yet, when threatened with a libel action, both papers backed down - a point that the NCC might want to consider!
There can be no doubt that the leaks came from the compliance unit. The Telegraph article spoke of “evidence compiled by Labour’s compliance unit when Mr Greenstein attempted to join the party last summer, seen by The Telegraph.”
When I complained, McNicol wrote back deploring the “unwarranted attack on a hardworking and diligent member of the compliance unit”. Quite understandably he refused to investigate the leak because there is little point in investigating what you already know.
The Chakrabarti report which Jeremy Corbyn commissioned in April 2016 (and which has disappeared from the Labour Party’s website) was quite explicit:
It is completely unfair, unacceptable and a breach of data protection law that anyone should have found out about being the subject to an investigation or their suspension by way of the media and indeed that leaks, briefing or other publicity should so often have accompanied a suspension pending investigation (p17).
Yet Jane Shaw, secretary to the NCC, had the gall to write to me: “The party never discusses matters relating to individual members with third parties” (email, November 22 2017). There is a culture of lying and dishonesty amongst Labour’s bureaucracy. Like a fish, an organisation rots from the head down.
On May 30 I had an investigation hearing, where I was presented with a variety of clips, tweets, etc. What I was being interrogated about were my views on Israel and Zionism. I was accused, for example, of equating Israel’s marriage laws to those of the Nuremburg Laws. This was deemed to be anti-Semitic. As I explained in a letter to The Telegraph, this comparison was first made by Hannah Arendt, herself a Jewish refugee from Nazi Germany in her book Eichmann in Jerusalem. It is a fact that Jews and non-Jews cannot marry in Israel unless the Jewish person converts to another religion. In Israel there is, quite deliberately, no secular marriage because they want to prevent Jewish-Arab marriages. In a society based on racial supremacy, it is important to prevent such relationships, hence why a book depicting the relationship between an Israeli Jewish and Arab teenager, Borderlife, was banned from the high-school syllabus by the education ministry.
I was also quizzed about having said that Israel was waiting for the survivors of the holocaust to die in order that it could save paying them welfare benefits. I pointed out to Harry Gregson (HG) that the Israeli paper Ha’aretz had printed an article, ‘Israel is waiting for its holocaust survivors to die’.
This hearing is being held according to appendix 6 of the Labour Party’s rules: ‘Procedural guidelines in disciplinary cases brought before the NCC’. In an email of November 21 I explained that these rules are not binding (appendix 6 does not even form part of the party’s rules). They are merely advisory and should be read alongside, for example, the Chakrabarti report (CR).
Section 6.D.i, of appendix 6, states that complaints about the process leading up to bringing charges will “not be entertained by the NCC or panel thereof unless it is material or relevant to the consideration of the evidence to be used by the presenter in support of the charges”. My complaints of a 17-month delay are clearly material and relevant to the consideration of the evidence, especially in the light of Chakrabarti’s recommendations.
In an email of November 20 Ms Shaw accepted that the bundle and papers were only “technically sent” within the guideline at appendix 6.5.B.i, and she also admitted that I was “given less than a full six weeks’ notice of the hearing”. Having accepted that I was given less than the requisite time, it is outrageous that my request for a postponement has been refused. Clearly it raises the question of bias.
Section 5 of the CR notes “a lack of clarity and confidence in current disciplinary procedures from all sides of the party, including on the part of those who have complained and been complained against”. Is it any wonder?
Anti-Semitism is the pretext for the charges. Accusations of ‘anti-Semitism’ are the stock-in-trade of the Zionist movement and Israel’s supporters. Understandably it is difficult to defend the demolition of Palestinian homes and houses, ongoing colonisation, the routine use of torture, including against children. It is much easier to cry ‘anti-Semitism’.
For most of my adult life I have been an active anti-fascist. I was a founder member of Brighton and Hove Anti-fascist Committee, Secretary of the local Anti-Nazi League, an executive committee member of Anti-Fascist Action nationally and I’ve written the only book published on the fight against fascism in Brighton and the south coast.
My crime is that I am not prepared to turn a blind eye to the racism of Zionism and Israeli apartheid. If you are an anti-racist you cannot excuse Israel’s racism simply because it is carried out in the name of Jewish people. It is those who have brought these accusations and charges who are the racists. The NCC’s chair has already demonstrated that they are in full agreement with those who have launched Labour’s witch-hunt.
HG asked me about my assertion that there was collaboration between the Zionist movement and the Nazis and that the Zionist movement was hostile to rescuing Jews to places other than Palestine. I cited the memo of David Ben Gurion, Israel’s first prime minister. It can be found for example in Ben Gurion’s official biography by Shabtai Teveth, The burning ground1886-1948:
If I knew that it would be possible to save all the children in Germany by bringing them over to England, and only half of them by transporting them to Eretz Yisrael, then I would opt for the second alternative. For we must weigh not only the life of these children, but also the history of the people of Israel (p855).
This was Zionism’s racist logic. The Jewish state is of greater importance than the Jews. HG chose not to pursue this and I notice that it has been entirely dropped from the charges. Despite the hue and cry about Ken Livingstone’s ‘anti-Semitism’, the compliance unit is unwilling to pursue the matter because it is well documented that, unlike the vast majority of Jews, the Zionist movement did collaborate willingly and not when it was under duress.
Of course, the victors in any war write its history and Zionism has attempted to rewrite its history erasing its role as a movement of collaboration. The facts, however, have a habit of asserting themselves regardless. As Yigal Elam, an Israeli historian observed,
From the very first moment [Zionism] gave up all considerations connected with the situation of the Jewish people in the diaspora, except in so far as they contributed to the Zionist enterprise ... when the demonstrations and protest actions against the Nazi regime of terror reached their climax, the voice of Zionism was not to be heard.1
It is quite understandable that the NCC does not seek to pursue these questions with me!
HG also asked me about my remark that Zionism is a form of Jewish anti-Semitism. This charge too has disappeared from the charge sheet and again it is not difficult to understand why. I cited as an example the quotation from Israel’s first justice minister, Pinhas Rosenbluth, that “Palestine is an institute for the fumigation of Jewish vermin.”A comment which, if you did not know the author, you would assume came from a Nazi.2
There are those misguided souls in the Labour Party who genuinely believe that Zionism stands opposed to anti-Semitism, that its concern is genuine rather than a pretext for wielding it as a weapon against their opponents. I hate to disabuse such innocents. Zionism began from the belief that anti-Semitism was inherent in non-Jewish society. Indeed it held it to be justified because it was the Jewish situation that was anomalous. Zionism had no principled disagreement with racial nationalism. Hence why, today, Israel refuses to accept African refugees, since they threaten Israel’s Jewish identity. As Yigal Elam wrote,
Zionism did not consider anti-Semitism an abnormal, absurd, perverse or marginal phenomenon. Zionism considered anti-Semitism a fact of nature, a standard constant, the norm in the relationship of the non-Jews to the presence of Jews in their midst ... Zionism considered anti-Semitism a normal, almost rational reaction of the gentiles to the abnormal, absurd and perverse situation of the Jewish people in the diaspora.3
Theodor Herzl, the founding father of political Zionism, wrote at the time of the Dreyfus affair:
In Paris ... I achieved a freer attitude towards anti-Semitism, which I now began to understand historically and to pardon. Above all, I recognise the emptiness and futility of trying to ‘combat’ anti-Semitism.4
Today the Zionist movement everywhere is in an alliance with the right and the far right. Labour Zionism only exists in any strength today outside Israel. In Israel itself, as it moves ever further to the right, it is a marginal movement. Virtually every far-right party in Europe sees Israel as a bulwark against Islam and Muslims. France’s Le Pen, Geert Wilders in The Netherlands, Herr Strache’s Freedom Party in Austria, Alternatives for Germany (AfD) and, of course, our own BNP, Britain First and English Defence League. In the USA the white supremacists around Breitbart are enthusiastic about Israel and their CEO, Steve Bannon, was the guest of honour at the recent gala dinner of the Zionist Organisation of America! The idea that socialists have anything in common with Zionism is a sign of the political and ideological decay of social democracy - a decay which the NCC represents. It is a legacy of the New Labour and Blair era.
The charges are divided into three parts, but I will take them in specific categories. Bearing in mind that because of the lack of time I have been afforded I can only respond to a selection.
Social media posts and Twitter
The monitoring of these by the compliance unit and their acolytes is not a neutral exercise. It became notorious when Jeremy Corbyn was challenged by Owen Smith and Labour Party staff proactively searched the Twitter feeds of thousands of members in order to deprive them of a vote. This exercise was conducted exclusively against supporters of Jeremy Corbyn. Some of the more notorious cases included Ronnie Draper, president of the Bakers Union, and a woman suspended for saying that she liked the ‘fucking Foo Fighters”.
This exercise was wholly corrupt and if this had been a local authority election Iain McNicol would have been arrested for corrupt electoral practices.
This legacy still persists. Abusive posts by supporters of the right and Progress are routinely ignored. I have three times made a complaint to McNicol about a comment on the Facebook page of Warren Morgan, leader of Brighton and Hove Council. In other words, the indignation over social media posts is highly selective and partisan.
I am not going to spend any time over what are considered offensive social media posts, for a number of reasons:
1. Social media comments are here today and gone tomorrow. There are no posts of mine which are in any way anti-Semitic. Any suggestion to the contrary is a lie and defamatory. Being abusive to those who are abusive to me is no business of the compliance unit. Abusive posts by the right, however, are routinely ignored.
2. The information commissioner has already ruled that the use by Labour’s Torquemadas of people’s social media postings breaches the Data Protection Act.
3. Many of the posts are untraceable and it is therefore impossible to discern the context.
4. I have, like many others, been the subject of quite vile and abusive tweets. To highlight my response without the initial tweets is plainly dishonest. I enclose a sheet consisting of 6 pages of such tweets, including those wishing I and my family had died in Auschwitz.
5. Some tweets are in response to Labour councillors, who publicly announced they had joined the JLM. I therefore posted to them reminders about things like the demolition of Bedouin villages in Israel or the fact that the ILP supports the deportation of asylum-seekers. This is part of a vigorous political debate. Supporters of racism rarely like to be called out.
6. The comment, from the non-Jewish councillor, Caroline ‘Poison’ Penn - “Do you have a problem with Jewish people, Tony?” - is an example of the abuse I refer to. If the compliance unit doesn’t understand why this is racist they are even more stupid than I’ve given them credit for.
7. The compliance unit seems to have a problem with my pointing out that Israel’s culture minister, Miri Regev, called refugees “cancer” before apologising to cancer victims for comparing them with refugees. What is the objection of the compliance racists to this?
8. There is a larger point to be made. What kind of party allows its unelected paid staff to monitor its membership? If there is evidence of overt racism, including anti-Semitism, that should be dealt with (although disciplinary measures should be a last resort), but that was not the point of such monitoring. It has been a factional tool used by the desiccated bureaucrats of Southside.
The question of ‘Zio’
Points 5-9, 16 and possibly other paragraphs are taken up with the question of ‘Zio’. I have used this on Twitter as a shorthand for ‘Zionist’, given its previous 140-character limit.
However, I defend the use of this term. It is not a “racist epithet” or in any way racist. Yes, it is used pejoratively and why not? Zionism is a racist, settler colonial movement. Far from ‘Zio’ being anti-Semitic, it is those who assert it is racist who are being anti-Semitic. ‘Zio’ is short for Zionist in exactly the same way as ‘fash’ is short for ‘fascist’ or ‘commie’ is short for ‘communist’, etc. They may all be used in a pejorative sense, but they are not racist. ‘Zio’ is only racist if ‘Zionist’ and ‘Jew’ are synonymous. Now, to fascists and anti-Semites ‘Jew’ and ‘Zionist’ are interchangeable. To Zionists they are also interchangeable, but historically most Jews were not Zionists and most Zionists were not Jewish. Many anti-Semites were and are Zionists - for example, Arthur Balfour and Richard Spencer - because if you believe Jews should not live in the diaspora you are either an anti-Semite or a Zionist.
In the USA the largest number of Zionists are Christian fundamentalists like pastor John Hagee, who is a notorious anti-Semite. However, he is also president of Christians United for Israel. Hagee, who was defended by the Zionist movement in the US, became famous when John McCain was forced to disavow him in the presidential campaign against Obama because he preaches that Hitler was an agent of god, sent to drive the Jews to Israel. Yet another example of an anti-Semite who was also a Zionist.
Yes, Chakrabarti recommended that ‘Zio’ should not be used. However, it is noticeable that those who quote Chakrabarti over ‘Zio’ are content to ignore her recommendations concerning procedure. Hypocrisy is the tribute that vice pays to virtue, so I am not surprised!
John Mann MP
According to Nos13-15, exception is taken to my description of John Mann as “addicted to murder and racism”on a public forum (I’m not sure which one, since whoever compiled the bundle has not come to terms with the concept of page-number referencing). This is not only “potentially defamatory but grossly detrimental and/or prejudicial to the party.”
Utter nonsense. Mann has made a living out of ‘anti-Semitism’. This is the same John Mann who staged a media confrontation with Ken Livingstone, accusing him of being a “Hitler supporter” on the basis of a factual statement about Nazi support for Zionism. It was Mann’s behaviour that brought the Labour Party into disrepute.
Mann compared Naz Shah to Adolph Eichmann and in the middle of the first leadership election he penned an open letter to Jeremy Corbyn on child abuse, exploiting this serious issue for factional advantage. Nothing I could say about this disgusting rent-a-mouth could compare with what he himself says.
Mann’s ‘concern’ with ‘anti-Semitism’ has more to do with his rightwing, pro-imperialist politics than racism. It is noticeable that Mann has never spoken out about asylum-seekers, refugees, deaths of black teenagers in prison or Islamophobia. What concerns him is criticism of Israel. Mann has repeatedly stoked the fires of the false anti-Semitism campaign and it was this that damaged the Labour Party. This campaign has been directed almost exclusively against supporters of the Palestinians. Mann launched a vitriolic campaign against a 90-year old Jewish doctor from Gateshead, Dr Glatt, who had the temerity to criticise him. Mann was forced by my blog to take his lying Facebook posts down.
If what I said about Mann was defamatory then he has a very simple option. Sue me for libel, bearing in mind that the truth is an absolute defence and Mann might lose some of his ill-gotten gains. One thing is for certain: my comments are no business of McNicol’s puppets.
As for the allegation that, using a public forum, I have caused gross detriment or prejudice to the party: prove it! This is another McCarthyite lie. An assortment of petty censors who, lacking any substantive argument, rely on the catch-all charge of a detriment which is impossible to prove or deny.
Louise Ellman MP
In numbers 24-26 I am taken to task for criticising the MP for Liverpool Riverside and Tel Aviv, Louise Ellman. Great exception is taken to my description of her, “on a public forum”, as “a supporter of Israeli child abuse - night-time arrests, beatings and incarceration of Palestinian children”. My accusers dare not say whether I am correct though. Instead these pathetic dissemblers revert to the old McCarthyite generalities of causing prejudice and “gross detriment to the party”.
If telling the truth about the execrable Ellman has caused detriment, then the answer is to remove her and allow her constituency to find a socialist MP to replace her. If what I have written is true, then considerations of detriment, gross or otherwise, fall away.
On January 6 2016 there was a debate in the House of Commons on ‘Child prisoners and detainees: occupied Palestinian territories’, introduced by Sarah Champion. Champion described how, in June 2012, a delegation of British lawyers published a report on children held in Israeli military custody. The report found that Israel was in breach of six of its legal obligations under the UN convention on the rights of the child and two obligations under the 4th Geneva convention. The report concluded that if the allegations of abuse were true, Israel would also be in breach of the absolute prohibition against cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment - in other words, torture - against children, which is a war crime.
Ms Champion explained that eight months after the UK report was published, Unicef released its own assessment of the military detention system for children. After reviewing over 400 sworn affidavits from children detained in a system that allows the prosecution of 12-year-olds in military courts, Unicef concluded:
the ill-treatment of children who come in contact with the military detention system appears to be widespread, systematic and institutionalised throughout the process, from the moment of arrest until the child’s prosecution and eventual conviction and sentencing.
In February 2015 Unicef updated its report and noted that allegations of “ill-treatment of children during arrest, transfer, interrogation and detention have not significantly decreased in 2013 and 2014”. Amongst the issues that British officials raised, were “the use of painful plastic ties to restrain children, arresting children in the middle of the night in terrifying military raids, and the mandatory use of audiovisual recording of all interrogations”.
Paula Sherriff, MP for Dewsbury, who had visited the West Bank with Ms Champion in September 2015, asked a most relevant question:
Does my hon friend share my concern at the significant disparity between treatment of Palestinian and Israeli young people, including lack of legal representation and parental support, allegations of widespread abuse and having to sign confessions in Hebrew ...?
To put it bluntly, why are Jewish children and Palestinian children treated differently? This is quintessentially racist. Why do Jewish children from the settlements have a parent or legal advisor with them at all times? Why are Jewish children rarely, if ever, incarcerated? Why are Palestinian children forced to sign confessions in a language they do not understand?
Sara Champion responded: “The disparity between the two legal systems includes, for example, a maximum period of detention without charge of 40 days for an Israeli child and 188 days for a Palestinian child.” The late Jo Cox MP also contributed to the debate:
I congratulate my hon friend on securing this debate. She will be aware that evidence from Military Court Watch suggests that 65% of children continue to report being arrested at night in what are described as terrifying raids by the military. Will she comment on that worrying fact?
Louise Ellman made three contributions on behalf of the Israeli military and the JLM, of which she is vice-president - Ellman (and Ian Austin) were determined to defend Israel’s military. Every excuse for torture, the beating of children, the night-time arrest of children, who are blindfolded and handcuffed in painful plastic cuffs, was made by them.
Ellman repeated Israeli army propaganda - an army whose statements have repeatedly been show to be fabricated, such that the Israeli human rights NGO, B’tselem, no longer cooperates with them. Its soldiers have brutally attacked cameramen, murdered wounded prisoners and physically attacked children in broad daylight. Ellman appears to be more the MP for Tel Aviv than for Liverpool Riverside. In her first contribution she stated:
the context in which these situations occur is an organised campaign conducted by the Palestinian authorities of incitement, to try to provoke young Palestinians to carry out acts of violence towards other civilians, some of which result in death, including the death of young children.
This is a lie. The Palestinian Authority is considered by most Palestinians to be a Quisling authority which works openly in coordination with Israel’s army. But what Ellman was really saying is that the Palestinians would be perfectly happy living under military occupation but for the “incitement” of “young Palestinians”. For Ellman it is not Israel’s 50-year-long military occupation that causes Palestinian resistance, but “incitement”. Presumably Palestinians just love seeing their land confiscated, their houses demolished and their economic prospects blighted. This is a colonial fiction. Would the French have been happy with the Nazi occupiers but for the resistance? The violence of the occupier is transferred by Ellman onto the Palestinians. Ellman continued:
I note my hon friend’s comments that a child should not be detained, and I assume that she means in any circumstances. Suppose a child was involved in an act of violence that resulted in the deaths of other human beings. That is what has happened with young Palestinians throwing stones - people have been killed. In those circumstances, surely she thinks that there should be detention.
Ellman doesn’t condemn Israel’s military because in her eyes the occupation is legitimate and the military are merely agents of law and order. In a third contribution Ellman asked:
Does my hon friend really believe that the solution to this horrendous conflict between two peoples - the Israeli and the Palestinian people - can be found by encouraging individual child Palestinians to commit acts of violence against other human beings?
Ellman’s is the voice of the colonialist. For her Palestinian children are the guilty ones and Israel’s military are innocent. Ellman’s assertions lack even the slightest evidence. Ellman is an echo chamber for Israel’s military. The torture and beatings by an army which refuses to record its interrogations, and which refuses access by lawyers or parents to their children, is acceptable. Nothing I could say about this wretch of a woman could be strong enough.
What the racists from the compliance unit mean when they speak of “the sensitivity of the subject matter”, which means that “obvious care needs to be taken when discussing the issue”, is that we should turn a blind eye to Israel’s human rights abuses and not call out Israel’s war crimes.
Of course, there are precedents. In the 1930s when the Jewish boycott of Nazi Germany was in full swing (the Zionists excepted), Lord Rothermere, owner of the Daily Mirror and Daily Mail, wrote:
They have started a clamorous campaign of denunciation against what they call “Nazi atrocities”, which, as anyone who visits Germany quickly discovers for himself, consists merely of a few isolated acts of violence.5
Israeli Labor Party
In points 28 and 29 my assertion that the JLM (not Labour Party members) were “holding hands with Israeli Labor ethnic cleansers” is deemed “not an acceptable way of engaging in political debate”. In a repetition of the same stale formula (apparatchiks love repetitious formula, because it saves them from thinking) “doing so on a public forum has further prejudiced and/or caused gross detriment to the party”.Telling the truth according to these mendacious pen-pushers is to cause detriment or prejudice.
It is a matter of fact that the ILP is and always has been a party of ethnic cleansing. From the 1920s, when it picketed out Jewish employers who employed Arabs, they called it ‘Jewish Labor’ to 1947-48, when it organised the expulsion of three quarters of a million Palestinians. Of course, in 1944 the Labor Party’s own manifesto supported the ‘transfer’ of the Palestinians - “let the Arabs be encouraged to move out as the Jews move in”.
Ofer Aderet reported in Ha’aretz (November 17 2017 that the Israeli Labor prime minister at the time of the 1967 war, Levi Eshkol, stated, in respect of the newly conquered territory of Gaza: “Perhaps if we don’t give them enough water they won’t have a choice, because the orchards will yellow and wither.” He also wrote that “I want them all to go, even if they go to the moon.”
The JLM describes itself as the “sister party of the ILP”. It is therefore perfectly reasonable to say that it is “holding hands with the ethnic cleansers of the ILP”.Telling the truth to those who are prosecuting charges against me seems to be a crime!
In charge numbers 37 and 38 it appears to be an offence to call for the disaffiliation of the JLM and likewise for calling on Jeremy Corbyn to dissociate himself from LFI. No explanation is provided for why these are highlighted.
‘Israel is a racist settler-colonial state’
No explanation is provided as to why objection is taken to this heading. (There is also a subtitle to the post to which they take exception: ‘Palestinian Israelis killed, as Bedouin village is destroyed to make way for a Jewish town’.) Perhaps the compliance McCarthyites think it is self-evident? Perhaps this is a form of postmodern racism, whereby, since everything is relative, the truth can also be a crime.
This is an excellent example of the contempt for critical and radical thought of Labour’s small-minded apparatchiks. This showed itself in the (rescinded) expulsion of professor Moshé Machover. Free speech and open political debate are frowned upon unless confined within strict parameters and defined by acceptable clichés. You must not speak the truth, least of all to power.
Zionism is a settler-colonial movement. In its early years it openly called itself a colonising movement. It established (Jewish-only) settlements. Was it racist? Was there any colonial movement that was not racist?
The question is whether Israel is a settler colonial state today. If so, it must be racist. In January an ‘unrecognised’ Bedouin village in Israel’s Negev desert was demolished at dawn with dozens of heavily armed Israeli police in attendance. They shot a Palestinian, a teacher, dead. No Jewish demonstrator, no matter how violent, has ever been killed nor have the police ever opened fire on a Jewish demonstration. Racism? Perish the thought.
Half the Arab villages in Israel are unrecognised - they have no right to be there. They are liable to instant demolition. They are not connected to water, electricity or sewerage, etc.
Umm al-Hiran was established in 1956. The Negev is 98% empty, but the Zionist authorities decided to build a Jewish-only town on top of the village, not besides it. No Jewish village has ever been demolished. No Jewish village is unrecognised. Not one new Arab village or town has been created since 1948, even though their population has increased tenfold.
So was the demolition of Umm al-Hiran the act of a racist, settler-colonial state? The answer should be obvious to all but the racists who are seeking to expel me.
Charges numbers 43-45 are truly bewildering and an example of the McCarthyite mentality. Free speech, open debate, critical thinking - all of these are anathema to the tiny, closed minds of compliance and those on the NCC panel who are willing to do their bidding.
In charge No43 I state that Gerald Kaufman’s speech to the House of Commons on January 15 2009 “was unforgivable (to the Zionists) because we must not compare Israel to Nazi Germany. Only Zionists may use the holocaust to defend their bastard state of racial supremacy.”
I stand by every word. What possible reason is there for this to form part of the disciplinary charges against me? Kaufman’s speech will go down as one of the great parliamentary speeches. During Operation Cast Lead, which killed 1,400 Palestinian civilians, he declared:
My parents came to Britain as refugees from Poland. Most of their families were subsequently murdered by the Nazis in the holocaust. My grandmother was ill in bed when the Nazis came to her home town of Staszów. A German soldier shot her dead in her bed.
My grandmother did not die to provide cover for Israeli soldiers murdering Palestinian grandmothers in Gaza. The current Israeli government ruthlessly and cynically exploit the continuing guilt among gentiles over the slaughter of Jews in the holocaust as justification for their murder of Palestinians. The implication is that Jewish lives are precious, but the lives of Palestinians do not count.
Charge 44 says that on March 4 2017 I posted a blog entitled ‘The abuse of anti-Semitism to silence free speech on Israel’.Yes, there has been an outrageous attempt to use ‘anti-Semitism’ as a means of silencing debate on Zionism and Palestine. This is what this hearing is about! That is what I believe. Is that verboten? Do the members of the NCC wish to see an internal equivalent of a police state regime? Do members of the NCC find it so difficult to comprehend that there has been a media campaign aimed at creating an atmosphere whereby it is taken for granted that anti-Semitism is prevalent in the Labour Party, despite the lack of any evidence? That, after all, is why the main targets of McNicol’s witch-hunters are Jewish!
An interview with Avi Shlaim, an Israeli professor of international relations at St Anthony’s College Oxford, is instructive:
Anti-Semitism is not a real phenomenon within the Labour Party or any of the other major political parties. There are anti-Semitic incidents, but they are usually related to Israel’s behaviour, Israeli brutality. So every time there is an Israeli attack on Gaza - and there have been three in the last seven years - there is a rise in anti-Semitic episodes and incidents in Britain. Fundamentally Israel and the Israeli propaganda machine and Israel’s friends in England and the Israel lobby in Britain deliberately confuse or conflate - and I stress they do it deliberately - anti-Semitism with anti-Zionism. Anti-Zionism is nothing to do with Jews. Anti-Semitism is hatred of the Jews as Jews. Anti-Zionism is opposition to Israel as a colonial power and as an exclusive Jewish state.
That should be clear, even to the dimmest member of compliance or the NCC.
In charge 45 exception is taken to my statement: “What we have seen is an exercise in state-sponsored destabilisation of the party and we are also witnessing wholesale attack on the Palestine solidarity movement using the weapon of ‘anti-Semitism’.”
I should have added what we are also seeing is a wholesale attack on free speech in the Labour Party by ‘police-state democrats’ (as the supporters of Hubert Humphrey were termed). At the behest of the Israel lobby, the compliance unit and McNicol have given warning that debate in the Labour Party is only allowed within strict confines. They wish to import the censorship and ‘gag orders’ so beloved of the Israeli state. It will be for others to decide whether or not they will be allowed to get away with it, as I have no illusions in the NCC’s tame lapdogs.
Throughout the bundle there are references to the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance definition of anti-Semitism. The way it is presented in the charges against me, it is as if this definition was unproblematic. The impression given is that this is a consensual definition, whereas nothing could be further from the truth.
Those who drew up the bundle cannot but have been aware of the controversies surrounding the IHRA. If they were not their ignorance is astounding. To make no reference to these controversies or the fact that the Labour Party has only adopted the short 38-word introduction to the IHRA is symptomatic of the dishonesty and deceit of my accusers.
The IHRA definition of anti-Semitism was adopted by the governments of 31 countries, including the anti-Semitic governments of Poland and Hungary, in May 2016. The government of Poland has just welcomed the 60,000-strong march of fascists and racists in Warsaw. According to interior minister Mariusz Błaszczak, “It was a beautiful sight.” Relations between Poland’s far-right Law and Justice government and the Israeli government are extremely strong, because Israel is admired by the right for its hostility to Muslim and Arabs. The assembled gathered under a banner, “Pray for Islamic holocaust”, whilst the crowd chanted “Remove Jewry from power” (not that there are many Jews left in Poland).
The government of Hungary is, if anything, even more anti-Semitic than that of Poland. Prime minister Viktor Orbán, a notorious racist in his own right, waged over the summer an anti-Semitic campaign against George Soros, seen as the archetypal Jewish financier. Orbán and his Fidesz party have sought to rehabilitate admiral Miklós Horthy, Hungary’s fascist ruler between 1920 and 1944 and the author of Hungary’s war-time alliance with Nazi Germany. Horthy was quite open about the fact that he was an anti-Semite:
Just before Netanyahu set out for Hungary in July, the Israeli ambassador in Budapest, Yossi Amrani, in response to pressure from the Hungarian Jewish community, criticised Orbán for his anti-Semitic campaign against Soros. Netanyahu immediately instructed him to retract his criticism. Soros, who is not a Zionist, had grown up in Hungary as a child and he survived the Nazi dragnet and deportation to Auschwitz. Soros’s major crime in the eyes of Zionism is helping to fund Israeli human rights groups. Soros also funds the liberal Free University in Budapest, which has been the subject of a concerted campaign by Orbán to close it down.
But the anti-Semitic nature of the Hungarian regime has not prevented it from adopting the IHRA definition of anti-Semitism.
According to the IHRA, anti-Semitism “could, taking into account the overall context, include ... drawing comparisons of contemporary Israeli policy to that of the Nazis”. The IHRA definition of anti-Semitism is almost identical to the EUMC Working Definition on Anti-Semitism, which was dropped by the EU’s Fundamental Rights Agency in 2013.
Theresa May adopted this “non-legally binding definition” of anti-Semitism in December 2016. Jeremy Corbyn and Labour subsequently adopted it, but without its 11 examples, seven of which refer to Israel, as was confirmed by the Party’s ‘Race and faith’ manifesto.
The IHRA definition was severely criticised by Hugh Tomlinson QC for being “unclear and confusing”. Sir Stephen Sedley, a Jewish former court of appeal judge, was scathing about the IHRA in ‘Defining anti-Semitism’.6 It “fails the first test of any definition: it is indefinite.”Sedley characterised the purpose of the IHRA as being to “permit perceptions of Jews which fall short of expressions of racial hostility to be stigmatised as anti-Semitic”.
The purpose of the IHRA is to conflate anti-Semitism and anti-Zionism. That is why Corbyn did not adopt the 11 examples of anti-Semitism, but simply the short introduction, which is still open-ended. To not explain this and to pretend that the whole IHRA had been adopted by the Labour Party is another example of the duplicity and dishonesty of my accusers.
Sense of humour failure
Ella Rose is a free transfer from the Israeli Embassy to the Jewish Labour Movement, where she is now director. She played a starring role in the Al Jazeera undercover programme, The lobby. She came across as a petulant, foul-mouthed, potentially violent young woman. In the course of her musings Ms Rose stated: “I’m a Zionist - shoot me.”To which I responded that it was tempting.
Quite amazingly my comments are subject to charges - numbers 19 and 20:
19: On January 15 2017, in response to a Labour Party member being reported as saying “so shoot me”, Mr Greenstein stated on Facebook: “Yes it is rather tempting. At least if someone does it they can say there was an open invitation.”
20. On January 17 2017, in response to a Labour Party member being reported as saying “so shoot me”,Mr Greenstein stated: “Ella Rose, racist director of @JewishLabour, invites us to shoot her - it is tempting, but ...”
Clearly the humourless scoundrel who inserted these charges did not read the last “but”: it was not a threat to murder her, but a humorous commentary on this spoilt brat’s idea of herself as some kind of martyr.
Under charge 3, I am accused of the most heinous all crimes: trivialisation of the holocaust and belittling the experience of the holocaust victims:
Charge 3: On May 3 2016, Mr Greenstein sent an email to the general secretary of the party, Iain McNicol, in which he proposed a “rule change” which would require that “all membership applications and nominations for party office or for Labour candidacies should first be submitted for approval to the Israeli embassy”. In that email he uses language reflecting the Nazi plan under Adolf Hitler to exterminate Jewish people: “If passed, it would provide a final - I mean, complete - solution”.
48. In an email to Mr McNicol on May 3 2016, Mr Greenstein trivialised the very serious issue of anti-Semitism - thereby trivialising and belittling the suffering of those who experience anti-Semitism. In doing so, Mr Greenstein acted in a way which is prejudicial and/or grossly detrimental to the party.
49. In addition, the references to a “final solution” used language connected with the atrocities committed against Jewish people in and by Nazi Germany in the 1930s and 40s, which is deeply offensive, provocative and highly insensitive.
On May 3, shortly after having been suspended and in contemplation of a situation whereby I had not been given any reason, I decided to send a humorous email to McNicol. I freely admit that I made a terrible error in assuming that he or any of the misfits he surrounds himself with had a sense of humour. Whether that should be the subject of Labour’s disciplinary process is for the NCC to decide. Perhaps this is the one real error of judgement I have made, though whether it is an expulsion offence is doubtful.
McNicol, who seems to make a virtue out of stupidity, failed to understand that what I wrote was an example of parody - a spoof or send-up designed to demonstrate not only the absurdity of the false anti-Semitism witch-hunt, but the manipulative and sordid way in which the holocaust is portrayed for political purposes. It is an example of irony and is completely lost on these humourless bastards.
I am, of course, at fault for not realising that when you are engaged in the business of ferreting out deviance, dissent or dissidence in Labour’s ranks, when your priority is to defend the world’s only apartheid state and with it the American alliance, then humour is a luxury you cannot afford. My crime is akin to imagining that there was anything humorous in the activities of Joe McCarthy or the House of UnAmerican Activities Committee. Although the compliance unit is restricted in the penalties it can impose (it cannot imprison me for the contempt I have for them), it operates on exactly the same ideological wave length and with the same thought processes. Anti-Semitism is the new anti-communism. Anti-Zionists are the reds under the bed that the scum are looking for.
If anyone is fooled by the Zionist assertion that being Jewish and Zionist are synonymous and is thereby tricked into making an anti-Semitic comment by virtue of associating Jews with Israel’s war crimes, then the full force of McNicol’s enforcers will be felt.
It is, when you think about it, quite a clever trick. The JLM and LFI do their utmost to pretend that Israel and Jews are the same and when people criticise or attack Jews for what Israel does then they are called anti-Semitic. It is, however, a trick with sometimes lethal consequences.
The World Zionist Organisation’s Jerusalem programme makes it absolutely clear that Jews are a nation whose bonds with Israel are indivisible. The foundations of Zionism are: “The unity of the Jewish people, its bond to its historic homeland Eretz Yisrael, and the centrality of the state of Israel and Jerusalem, its capital, in the life of the nation.”
Israel is the embodiment of the ‘Jewish nation’. As chief rabbi Ephraim Mirvis explained,
Zionism is a belief in the right to Jewish self-determination in a land that has been at the centre of the Jewish world for more than 3,000 years. One can no more separate [Zionism] from Judaism than separate the city of London from Great Britain.
The IHRA definition of anti-Semitism makes it clear that Israel is a symbol of Jewish nationhood and that “Denying the Jewish people their right to self-determination - eg, by claiming that the existence of a state of Israel is a racist endeavour” - is anti-Semitic. Now this phrasing is a classic example of a non-sequitur and an example of the shallowness of the IHRA definition. It is useless as a means of combating anti-Semitism.
According to the IHRA, Israel is the visible embodiment of the non-existent Jewish nation’s right to self-determination. However, if you take the IHRA at its word and start blaming Jews for what the Israeli state does, having been told the two are one and the same, then you are guilty of anti-Semitism, because “Holding Jews collectively responsible for actions of the state of Israel” is also anti-Semitic! Thus heads you lose and tails the Zionists win.
Whatever you do, you are anti-Semitic - unless, of course, you are actually an anti-Semite but you support the state of Israel. So a genuine neo-Nazi like the leader of the alt-right, Richard Spencer, who declares he is a white Zionist, or a 24-carat anti-Semite like Steve Bannon of Breitbart, who told his wife that he did not want his daughters going to the Archer School for Girls because they had too many Jewish students who were “whiny brats”, are OK.
I completely reject the assertion in charge 3 that my email to McNicol was anti-Semitic because I used “language reflecting the Nazi plan under Adolf Hitler to exterminate Jewish people” and stated that “If passed, it would provide a final - I mean, complete - solution”.
This is the email in question:
A good comrade of mine (pardon the unBlairish language) has suggested that the following rule change should be submitted to the next party conference. If passed it would enable a final - I mean, complete - solution - sorry, satisfactory outcome - to be reached in regard to the present impasse regarding anti-Semitism.
I realise that it will probably involve a severe reduction in the number of Muslims allowed into the party, because we all know that they are the root cause of our problems, but I hope that you will agree that allowing the Israeli embassy to vet all applications to the party, both current, future and past, would resolve all our problems.
Rule change proposal re membership applications to Labour Party
“To avoid any further unpleasantness Labour should agree a rule change that all membership applications and all nominations for party office or for Labour candidacies should first be submitted for approval to the Israeli embassy ...”
Any objections can be disregarded as obviously coming from anti-Semites. Have we not been told that the Macpherson report means that racism can only be defined by the victims, and that Israel is the nation state of the Jewish people, so that attacking Israel’s legitimacy is necessarily anti-Semitic? Then who better to define anti-Semitism than the government of the Jewish nation? Those who doubt this have by definition outed themselves as anti-Semites.
All tweets and Facebook comments of party members should be scrutinised so that the party can be cleansed of those who during the siege of Gaza may have been guilty of hate speech by denouncing Comrade Regev ... in such anti-Semitic terms as ‘two face lying Zio hack’, Israel’s answer to Comical Ali’, a shameless apologist for mass murder’, ‘PR man for war criminals’ and other vulgar abuse unbefitting a responsible party of government.
Yours in solidarity
I reject the mentality that associates the genocide of European Jews with a fetishisation of words. It is indeed a way of trivialising the holocaust. The holocaust is not a phrase that causes offence. It is also noticeable that the pen-pushers of Southside elide the holocaust into genocide of the Jews only, as if it did not also encompass the disabled and the Gypsies/Roma.
When Naz Shah MP was attacked and pilloried for posting a light-hearted joke about how much better it would be if Israel was relocated within the borders of its best friend, the United States (the cartoon actually came from the Jewish Virtual Library), Norman Finkelstein, both of whose parents were in concentration camps, wrote:
It’s doubtful these holocaust-mongers have a clue what the deportations were, or of the horrors that attended them. I remember my late mother describing her deportation. She was in the Warsaw ghetto. The survivors of the ghetto uprising - about 30,000 Jews - were deported to Maijdanek concentration camp. They were herded into railroad cars. My mother was sitting in the railroad car next to a woman who had her child. And the woman - I know it will shock you - the woman suffocated her infant child to death in front of my mother. She suffocated her child, rather than take her to where they were going. That’s what it meant to be deported.
To compare that to someone posting a light-hearted, innocuous cartoon making a little joke about how Israel is in thrall to the US or vice versa … it’s sick. What are they doing? Don’t they have any respect for the dead? All these desiccated Labour apparatchiks, dragging the Nazi holocaust through the mud for the sake of their petty jostling for power and position. Have they no shame?
These sentiments are entirely mine. The people who should hang their heads are those who brought these charges and who are willing partners in the exploitation of the holocaust for the purpose of defending Israel’s policies of segregation and ethnic cleansing.
My email highlighted the sacralisation of words as part of the process of emptying them of their meaning. What I am protesting against is the use of the holocaust as a means of defending the racist and apartheid practices of a state that terms itself Jewish.
I was drawing attention to the Zionisation of the holocaust, which destroys any attempt to draw meaningful lessons from it. How is it that Theresa May, who has adopted the IHRA definition of anti-Semitism in toto and who condemns Jeremy Corbyn’s ‘anti-Semitism’, is at the same time facilitating genocide in the Yemen through her sales of arms to the Saudi Arabian regime? How is it that no-one has the temerity to point this out? She condemns the holocaust, yet enables a genocide? How is this done? Because of hypocritical bastards like McNicol, Stolliday and the compliance unit. That is my response to this ridiculous charge.
How is it that Israel is actively helping Saudi Arabia in the Yemen and is the best friend today of Saudi Arabia, whilst it uses a holocaust propaganda museum, Yad Vashem, as a staging post for far-right politicians? Difficult questions for the holocaust-mongers and the petty party functionaries, whose goal it is to ‘cleanse’ Labour of its genuine anti-racists.
What are the lessons of the holocaust? Quite obviously that racism and fascism are human constructs that should be opposed wherever and whenever they occur. That should be a given for a socialist party. ‘Never again’ means exactly that. Never again should any people be singled out for annihilation because of their ‘race’. The holocaust has become Zionism’s primary ideological weapon against its adversaries. We had Netanyahu try to put the blame for the holocaust on the mufti of Jerusalem a year ago and in the process absolve Hitler.
Zionism has reduced the holocaust to a gauche sentimentality, devoid of any progressive political meaning. Indeed it is worse. Because of Israel’s ruthless use of the memory of the holocaust victims - victims whom the Zionist movement abandoned during the holocaust - the phenomenon of holocaust denial has grown up.
There was a time when holocaust denial was confined to a fringe, neo-Nazi element that denied that which they wanted to repeat. It is clear today, on social media and elsewhere, that holocaust denial extends far beyond a neo-Nazi fringe. Why? Because Israel uses the holocaust as a means of legitimation and to justify its war crimes. Some fools believe that if they deny the holocaust then they have removed Israel’s legitimacy. What they do not understand is that Israel’s illegitimacy arises from its existence as a racist, settler-colonial state independently of the holocaust. Since the holocaust is a fact, denying it merely reinforces and strengthens the Israeli state. To paraphrase August Bebel, it is the anti-Zionism of fools. But the primary responsibility for the spread of holocaust-denial ideas rests with not only Zionism, but the processes of sanctification and instrumentalisation of the holocaust - of which McNicol, the compliance unit and the NCC are a part.
Each year, Israel takes thousands of schoolchildren to Auschwitz. Not to imbue them with the values of anti-racism and anti-fascism, not in order that they better understand what happens when ‘the other’ is demonised and rendered inhuman, but in order to cement and reinforce the values of nationalism. ‘Never again’ to Zionism means ‘Never again to the Jews’. It has no anti-racist meaning. After all, how can a society in which segregation is rigidly enforced, where Arabs cannot live in 93% of the land, where education is segregated, where there is an ongoing fear of miscegenation - ie, intermarriage between Jew and non-Jew - be considered to have absorbed the lessons of the holocaust?
In the words of professor Idith Zertal, a historian at Jerusalem’s Hebrew University:
By means of Auschwitz ... Israel rendered itself immune to criticism and impervious to a rational dialogue with the world around her ... Israel, because of its wholesale and out-of-context use of the holocaust, became a prime example of devaluation of the meaning and enormity of the holocaust.7
I realise that both the NCC and my accusers are unlikely to understand the above. For imperialism and the Labour right, the holocaust is a simple tale, depoliticised with a fairy-story ending of the founding of Israel. That is the myth that Zionism propagates and people like me are here to undermine.
It is not my parody of the fetishisation of words associated with the holocaust, such as ‘final solution’, ‘transportation’, etc, which are anti-Semitic: it is the use of the holocaust in order to justify a regime of racial segregation, discrimination and ethnic cleansing, combined with a vicious regime of military law. It is that which makes a mockery of the holocaust victims and it is my accusers who are the real anti-Semites: J’accuse.
This is not just my view or even that of a distinguished scholar, such as Edith Zertal. In Israel there is a growing recognition, amongst an enlightened minority, of the racist and nationalist use to which the holocaust is put. There has been a move by the more liberal Israeli schools, which cater for the richest Israeli students, to stop these trips to Auschwitz. As Time magazine reported,
a prestigious and historic Israeli school, the Herzliya Hebrew Gymnasium ... announced it is breaking with the tradition ...
The school’s principal, Zeev Dagani, says he has stopped the trips because of their cost and a concern that it exacerbates nationalistic sentiments in youths, months before the students embark on compulsory service in the Israeli military.
“In recent years, the journey has increasingly overlapped with the current regime and atmosphere in Israel, which revolves around fear and hatred for the other,” Dagani told Israeli daily Ha’aretz. He warned that “the popular atmosphere here today is all about the delegitimisation of the other and nationalistic sentiments” - and that such trips can then “serve these trends”.8
Of course, to McNicol and his cohorts, the crimes committed against the Palestinians are illusory. Israel is the equivalent of Reagan’s ‘shining city on the hill’. It can do no wrong - after all, it is the only democracy in the Middle East. Every time it commits another series of war crimes or mass murder it is in ‘self-defence’. The laughable proposition that a nuclear superpower, armed to the teeth with American weaponry, is somehow fearful for its existence is itself a product of the siege mentality common to all settler-colonial states.
I stand by my email 100%. Its purpose was to bring the issue of how Zionism and Israel use and manipulate the holocaust for ideological political purposes. Israel’s use of the holocaust as an ideological weapon is inverse proportion to its concern for the actual victims of the holocaust. This does not sit easily with the Labour right’s adoration of Israel. Israel is - as the Prince of Darkness, Peter Mandelson, and others have said - a political litmus test for New Labour. Why? Because Israel is the embodiment of the special relationship with the United States.
Campaign against anti-Semitism
The charge sheet against me also quotes from the far-right Campaign Against Anti-Semitism and its bogus polls. These polls by the CAA have about as much validity as the polls which McNicol and co were relying on before June 8, which said that Jeremy Corbyn would lose votes for Labour. One might have hoped that even the more stupid members of the compliance unit would have learnt something.
The CAA is viciously hostile to the Labour Party. A search on their website for “racist Labour” turns up 64 results. A search on “Jeremy Corbyn” produces 107 results, none of them flattering. Indeed they made a complaint to McNicol that Corbyn was anti-Semitic!
But what about their polls? Even if they are a nasty, far-right, Zionist organisation, determined to tarnish any form of Palestine solidarity with the brush of ‘anti-Semitism’, perhaps their polls are sound? Unfortunately not. They are a highly political organisation, determined to stir up discord between Jews and Muslims, and whose primary purpose is to create the impression of a wave of anti-Semitism in Britain as part of the Zionist agenda of promoting aliyah (emigration of Jews to Israel).
Jonathan Boyd, executive director of the respected Institute for Jewish Policy Research (IJPR), dismissed the CAA’s survey of British Jewish opinion as having “little, if any, methodological credibility”.9 He also characterised the CAA’s presentation of the YouGov poll as “deeply flawed”. In a detailed critique, the IJPR found the CAA’s survey to be “littered with flaws” and “irresponsible”. Coming from the IJRP, these are very strong criticisms. Due to “quite basic methodological flaws and weaknesses”, its poll of British Jews had “very limited capacity” to assess the representativeness of its sample. In its poll it had absurdly claimed that “Almost half of Britons hold anti-Semitic view, poll suggests”.10
It is no surprise that those seeking to expel me are attracted to the CAA like a dog to its own vomit. A cursory glance at their site demonstrates they are a viciously racist, Islamophobic organisation. I have posted on my blog extensive articles on the CAA and so, given the attention paid to my blog, it must be assumed that those who decided to quote from the CAA did so knowingly. This is another example of my accusers’ racism. It is they, not me, who should be should be expelled from the Labour Party. Or is the only focus on bogus ‘anti-Semitism’?
Still, I guess that McNicol’s racist sleuths have done better than Harry Gregson. During his investigation he quoted from one Paul Bogdanor’s attack on me. A vicious anti-communist, Bogdanor is a contributor to David Horowitz’s Frontpagemag.com. This delightful site is on the list of the Southern Poverty Law Centre as a hate organisation. It boasts Robert Spencer’s Jihad Watch as well as the virulent racist Trump supporter, Pamela Geller. Both Spencer and Geller are banned from entering Britain, but that did not stop Gregson including them in the witch-hunter’s family. When you swim in a sewer, you cannot but help getting covered in shit.
If this response is rushed and it does not cover all the allegations, it is because the chair of the NCC decided in his wisdom that I should not have adequate time to respond to a bundle of documents and charges that had accumulated over 17 months.
I hope that members have pleasant reading!
1. Y Elam Introduction to Zionist history Tel Aviv 1972, pp113, 122 (Hebrew).
2. P Rosenbluth, ‘Classic Zionism and modern anti-Semitism: parallels and influences (1883-1914)’ Studies in Zionism No4, autumn 1983.
3. Ot,organ of the Israeli Labor Party, No2,1967.
4. R Patai (ed) Diaries p6.
5. ‘Nazi youth in control’ Daily News September 4 1933.
7. I Zertal Israel’s holocaust and the politics of nationhood Cambridge 2011.
10. The Guardian January 14 2015.