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UK black and minority ethnic groups blast Labour Party antisemitism debate for seeking to defend Israel by erasing Palestinian history

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Last week an unprecedented intervention occurred into the debate in the UK over the definition of antisemitism. Over 80 community, professional and rights-based organisations representing black, minority ethnic and diaspora peoples decried what they say is the framing of antisemitism in a way to ‘silence’ Palestinians, and other migrant groups, from speaking about their history.

The statement was first published in The Independent  but now has its own website and 102 signatories at the time of publication.

It says:

“As migrant and BAME groups in Britain, we reaffirm our fundamental right to the freedom of expression, and publicly to express our anxieties about the suppression of information on the history and lived experience of our communities.”

They single out Palestinians for special mention:

“We are deeply worried about current attempts to silence a public discussion of what happened in Palestine and to the Palestinians in 1948, when the majority of its people were forcibly expelled. These facts are well established and accessible, are part of the British historical record, as well as the direct experience of the Palestinian people themselves”.

Immense pressure is being pushed, by pro-Zionists and right-wing figures, for the Labour Party to accept completely the guidelines of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) – as they relate to the definition of antisemitism.

However the organisations warn that public discussion of the “injustices” in Palestinian history:

“would be prohibited under the IHRA’s guidelines, and therefore withholds vital knowledge from the public. This silencing has already begun.”

The signatories include national membership organisations and coalitions, trade union and worker’s associations, community associations and groups.

The significance of this intervention should not be understated.

Netanyahu and the Israel Lobby try to take down Jeremy Corbyn (Image: Carlos Latuff)

Hardly a day passes in the UK when the national press don’t quote someone – generally from the right-wing of British society – accusing Jeremy Corbyn of being soft on antisemitism. Corbyn has been relentlessly attacked by right-wing press. His supporters have been regularly depicted as cultists, traitors, bufoons, and antisemites. Meanwhile his policies, which are shown to generally have wide support among everyday Brits, when they are actually discussed, are generally ignored by the corporate and establishment  press.

Furthermore, voices from black and diaspora communities have almost entirely been excluded by this apparent discussion over racism in the UK. That such an intervention has been made by black and minority groups exposes how insular, self-selecting and vacuous the ‘debate’ on racism has been. The discussion has also almost entirely excluded anti-Muslim bigotry as well as nationalist driven prejudices.

Maurice Mcleod, director of Media Diversified, told me:

“Media Diversified was created five years ago to provide a platform for voices that have been marginalised because of their race, faith or culture. We stand shoulder to shoulder with people around the world who are suffering persecution and oppression”.

McCloud said:

“We care fiercely about the protection of minorities and believe that anti-semitism must be addressed with urgency, and in dialogue with Jewish groups and representatives”.

“Our view is that the IHRA definition of anti-Semitism is good but that some of the examples it provides would restrict the rights of Palestinians and those supporting them to describe their recent history”.

The Migrant Rights’ Network (MRN) also signed the statement.  

Rita Chadha, Interim Director of MRN, told me:

“Understanding the lived experience of those affected by displacement because of conflict is of paramount importance. It is the refugees of Palestine that have born witness to the very real need for long term peace. To not be able to talk about the atrocities of the conflict, means silencing the voice of those most in need of peace”

IHRA guidelines and the Labour Party NEC Code of Conduct

The Labour Party’s governing committee, the National Executive Committee (NEC), is expected to vote on September the 4th to decide whether to incorporate the additional examples into its code of conduct.

To be clear, the definition of antisemitim in the Labour Party’s Code of Conduct[pdf, p1] is actually identical to that of the IHRA.

However, the NEC has excluded some of the examples that the IHRA say “may serve to illustrate” cases of antisemitism.  One of the IHRA examples, excluded by the NEC Code[pdf, p2-3], says:

“Denying the Jewish people their right to self-determination, e.g., by claiming that the existence of a State of Israel is a racist endeavor.”

The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine: A blatantly “racist endeavour”

It is worth remembering how the state of Israel was founded. In November 1947 Zionist lobbying and pressure resulted in the UN General Assembly passing the UN partition plan of Palestine.

As the Institute of Middle East Understanding notes the partition plan:

“allocated approximately 55% of the land to the proposed Jewish state, although Zionist Jews owned only about 7% of the private land in Palestine and made up only about 33% of the population, a large percentage of whom were recent immigrants from Europe”.

Between 1947 and 1949 up to 750,000 Palestinians were forcibly displaced from their towns, villages and homes. Those doing the forcible displacement were settler-colonists, mostly first and second generation immigrants from Europe. Some became internal refugees in Gaza and the West Bank and the rest became refugees in the neighbouring states. Thousands were killed. At least 530 villages were destroyed. The purpose was to create an ethno-religiously pure state. A ‘Jewish state’. This process, known today as ethnic cleansing, is called the Nakba (Arabic for “catastrophe”) by Palestinians. Although the Nakba is in fact a process that occurs to this day, it is symbolically commemorated on the day the State of Israel was formally established, May 14 1948.

The architects of the forced displacement were overtly racist Judeo-European nationalists, known as Zionists. In most respects the state of Israel is a classical settler-colonial project. Israel’s apartheid character was further entrenched by the “nation state law” in July.

Yet, describing this history and the incredibly chauvinistic attitudes of the architects of the ethnic cleansing as a “racist endeavour” would lead to censure and removal from the party, if the further IHRA examples were added to the NEC Code. In fact, many people have already been suspended or removed from the Labour Party in the past two years. Most have been supporters of Corbyn and have been expelled for their criticism of the state of Israel.

Momentum rank and file oppose full IHRA examples

Rank and file members of the pro-Corbyn pressure group, Momentum, met on August 20th to declare their opposition to the adoption of the full list of IHRA examples. They have passed a resolution demanding that all Labour Party members be entitled to a vote on the issue. They also planned a “Mass Lobby of NEC” on September 4th against what they call the:

“Mounting pressure from the pro-Israel lobby, including right wing Labour MPs, backed by the corporate media and the BBC”.

It is important to note that many of these members are non and anti-Zionist Jews, whose voices are also kept out of the mainstream.

The statement is unequivocal warning that:

“The IHRA definition would return the party to the right which we voted down by a large majority – twice. Therefore, the members, not the NEC, nor the PLP, must decide whether or not to adopt the IHRA examples.”

In a clear recognition of the statement released last week, a petition, put forward by members of the Camden chapter of Momentum, states:

“Palestinians, other people of colour and other antiracists, including Jewish people who oppose Israeli apartheid, have said that the IHRA examples would censor Palestinians’ right to self-determination, criminalise the BDS movement and pose an existential threat to free speech on Israel”

Antisemitism or anti-Corbynism?

Some polling shows that up to 34% of the wider British public have been convinced that the Labour Party has a serious problem with antisemitism. However, that number drops to 13% in the Labour Party itself. 77% of Labour Party members think that antisemitism isn’t a problem in the Party or that it is but is being “deliberately exaggerated to damage Labour and Jeremy Corbyn, or to stifle criticism of Israel”.

A 2016 Jewish Socialist’s Group statement determined that a crisis had been “manufactured” to “weaponise antisemitism” against Corbyn. All of this after Labour Party membership grew massively under Corbyn with more members than all the other UK parties combined.

Not only have the charges of antisemitism not been backed up by any serious evidence; the entire discussion has been done at the complete expense and marginalization of black and ethnic minority voices in the UK.

All of this is occurring during horridly handled Brexit negotiations, brutal austerity policies, massacres being carried out against Palestinian civilians, and the UK backed slaughter in Yemen. That a long time anti-racist and anti-war campaigner such as Jeremy Corbyn is being labelled an antisemite shows how desperate those who oppose his policies are and how low they will go to undermine him and his supporters. The only question is whether those resisting these pressures will be able to prevent Corbyn and the rest of the Labour leadership from capitulating.

Mohamed Elmaazi

Mohamed Elmaazi obtained an LLB from SOAS and Masters in International and Comparative law from AUC. He volunteers with the Campaign Against Criminalising Communities. He writes for Open Democracy and The Canary. He also occasionally reports for The Real News Network.

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32 Responses

  1. just on August 23, 2018, 1:04 pm

    Thanks for this! I do wish that the title did not include the word “debate”, for there really is none; it’s a manufactured ‘crisis’ and unnecessary “debate”, imho.

    This is vicious character assassination of a truly good man who has a long history of doing the ‘right thing’. It is the work of Israelis and their ardent supporters who are afraid that they are going to have to face the truth about themselves and their support for ongoing Israeli terrorism, genocide, and apartheid. Corbyn stands on the side of justice and with the oppressed. Hopefully, he will be the next PM and the first ‘world leader’ who stands with Palestinians and for Palestine.

    “… Over 80 community, professional and rights-based organisations representing black, minority ethnic and diaspora peoples decried what they say is the framing of antisemitism in a way to ‘silence’ Palestinians, and other migrant groups, from speaking about their history. …”

    Thanks to them and to you, Mohamed.

    • MElmaazi on August 23, 2018, 4:09 pm

      You’re right, it is a tough one. Trying to figure out precisely what to call while keeping the word count of the headline as small as possible was difficult. But I do accept your critique.

      Thank you for the compliment.

  2. festus on August 23, 2018, 1:31 pm

    This is excellent.

    We need groups that have legitimately been marginalized and persecuted by society to call out those who hide behind fake victimization.

  3. MHughes976 on August 23, 2018, 3:43 pm

    The definition is bearable, though wordy. If you want to define anti-Semitism as a negative perception of Jews that is all right. I would deny that refusal to accept Israel as the expression of a genuine right of self-determination, the crucial purported ‘example’, is a genuine example in logic of things to which that definition refers. How would that stand up in court when I’m accused of hate speech do you think?

    • MElmaazi on August 23, 2018, 4:10 pm

      I don’t think it would. But the purpose is not for it to stand up in court, the purpose is to suppress supporters of Corbyn and critics of Israel – by silencing their voices and even purging them from the party.

    • Rashers2 on August 24, 2018, 11:16 am

      Thanks for the article. I don’t have too great a problem with IHRA’s “working definition” of anti-Semitism: “Antisemitism [sic] is a certain perception of Jews, which may be expressed as hatred toward Jews. Rhetorical and physical manifestations of antisemitism [sic] are directed toward Jewish or non-Jewish individuals and/or their property, toward Jewish community institutions and religious facilities,” unless “Jewish community institutions” include the state of Israel. My problem is the “guidelines” that go alongside the working definition, which appear designed to stifle criticism of Israel/Zionism.
      I hope soon there is a test case before the English courts. If so, I would hope the defendant argued strongly in favour of the OED definition, which seems perfectly adequate and equivalents of which have to suffice under extant legislation for all other religious/ethnic minority groups: “[Irrational] [h]ostility to or prejudice against Jews.” I cannot foresee an English court failing to accept a distinction between a political movement (Zionism), a political entity (Israel) and genuine hatred on grounds of religion or race alone.
      Mohamed is right that the campaign against Corbyn is a farrago of politically-motivated innuendo and out-of-context factoids tending towards some kind of “guilt by association”. Repeatedly, I find myself an improbable defender of Corbyn. I hope he and his allies have the strength to call out these cynical character assassination attempts for what they are.

  4. JLewisDickerson on August 23, 2018, 4:54 pm

    RE: “Immense pressure is being pushed, by pro-Zionists and right-wing figures, for the Labour Party to accept completely the guidelines of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) – as they relate to the definition of antisemitism.” ~ Elmaazi

    ■ VIDEO: Benjamin Netanyahu Is Fine With Anti-Semites — as Long as They Support Israel’s Occupation | by Mehdi Hasan | | August 23 2018

    Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu likes to accuse critics of Israel of being anti-Semites. But how does he explain his own glaring ties to anti-Semitic world leaders and Evangelical preachers, not to mention his defense of Adolf Hitler and his son’s attack on George Soros? Does defending Israel’s occupation of Palestinian lands make you immune from the charge of anti-Jewish hatred?

    In this video, Mehdi Hasan asks whether the prime minister of Israel is part of the solution to rising anti-Semitism — or part of the problem.


    • RoHa on August 23, 2018, 9:09 pm

      Dickerson, I see you are honoring Uri Avnery.

      • Misterioso on August 24, 2018, 10:03 am

        @Dickerson, et al.

        Here’s a “keeper.”

        London Review of Books, Aug. 30/18

        “The sea is the same sea” by Adam Shatz

        Review of “Bibi: The Turbulent Life and Times of Benjamin Netanyahu” by Anshel Pfeffer

        “Netanyahu’s Israel embodies what Ze’ev Jabotinsky, his father’s hero, called ‘an iron wall of Jewish bayonets’. Jabotinsky, the founder of Revisionist Zionism, dreamed of an Israel on both banks of the Jordan. Netanyahu has made his peace with Hashemite rule over Jordan, but in his commitment to a Greater Israel and his implacable opposition to Palestinian self-determination he remains his father’s son. Born into a Zionist family in Warsaw in 1910, Benzion Mileikowsky settled in Jerusalem in 1924, and joined Hatzohar, the World Union of Zionist Revisionists, right-wing but secular Zionists deeply influenced by blood-and-soil nationalism, and adopted his father’s pen name, ‘Netanyahu’, ‘given by god’. He became a student of the Spanish Inquisition, advancing the pitiless thesis that, rather than die for their faith, the conversos had embraced the Church out of ambition.”

        “Palestinians pay a steep price for resisting the occupation, whether violently or non-violently. The Israeli military calls this ‘mowing the lawn’. Pfeffer describes Netanyahu as ‘the prime minister with the lowest casualty rates in Israel’s history’, but he is only counting Israeli bodies. In the 2014 Gaza war alone, more than two thousand Palestinians were killed, two-thirds of them civilians, while Israel’s death toll stood at 64 soldiers and six civilians. Netanyahu’s response has been to accuse Hamas of using ‘telegenically dead Palestinians for their cause’. Most Israelis share this view. In 2016 in Hebron, during the short-lived ‘knife intifada’, Sergeant Elor Azaria was filmed executing a wounded suspect called Abdel Fattah al-Sharif. He had been lying on the ground for ten minutes when Azaria shot him. Azaria was condemned by Netanyahu’s defence minister, Moshe Yaalon, but when most Israelis seemed to be rallying to his defence, Netanyahu changed his tune, making a sympathy call to the killer’s family. After nine months in prison, Azaria walked free.

        “Israeli liberals used to console themselves with the thought that, inside the Green Line, things were different: to cross from the West Bank into Israel was to enter the rich pastures of a vibrant democracy. This was always something of a fable: Israeli democracy was never untouched by the occupation, or by the authoritarian military government it imposed on the Palestinians from 1948 to 1966, a year before the occupation began. Still, Israeli liberals could reasonably invoke the country’s free elections and lively press as evidence of democratic vitality, at least for Jews. Under Netanyahu, not only has the occupation become even more entrenched, but the line between Israel and the occupied territories has continued to blur. Ahmed Tibi, a Palestinian member of the Knesset, has often remarked that Israel is a democracy for Jews but a Jewish state for Arabs. With the passage of the new Basic Law, which declares Israel ‘the nation-state of the Jewish people’, this is now inscribed in the country’s constitution. Israel has officially become what it has always been in practice: a herrenvolk democracy, where only Jews have full citizenship and non-Jews are at best a tolerated minority; where an immigrant from Miami or Moscow can lord it over a native-born Palestinian citizen whose family has been in Haifa or Nazareth for centuries. Arabic, once an official language, has been downgraded to one with ‘special status’.”

        “Those who oppose the occupation or anti-Arab discrimination inside Israel are no longer critics: they are enemies. Liberal journalists, leftist artists and professors, human rights researchers, Arab voters ‘moving to the polls in droves’: to listen to Netanyahu is to imagine an internal plot against Israel. ‘We have two main enemies, the New York Times and Haaretz,’ Netanyahu said at a private meeting. ‘They set the agenda for the anti-Israel campaign all over the world.’ When Sara Netanyahu was indicted for fraud and breach of trust in September 2017, after being charged with illegally spending public funds on celebrity chef dinners, the couple’s son, Yair, posted a neo-Nazi cartoon on Facebook, superimposing the faces of his parents’ critics.”

        “Netanyahu, for the moment, seems exuberant, emboldened by his ties to Trump, the expansion of trade with Asia, and the complicity of the Sunni Arab regimes. Israel’s strategic position has never been stronger, or its neighbours weaker. But the scenes of unarmed protesters killed by Israeli snipers in Gaza are a reminder of the discontent that lies beneath the surface. Under Netanyahu, Israel has run up a substantial bill in blood and tears. Unlike his wife’s credit card, it will eventually have to be paid.”

      • Maghlawatan on August 24, 2018, 11:02 am

        The occupation has broken Israel. Anyone can make a mess. Just take so much and
        make it less. Just brainwash your own kids. Anyone can turn a country into an autocracy. Jews didn’t pray for a Pharaoh. Netanyahu will be remembered with the great Jewish traitors.

  5. annie on August 23, 2018, 5:09 pm

    excellent article mohamed! i hope it is the first of many articles you write for mondoweiss. as you know, i like your writing.

    at the core of this, aside from the obvious tightening of the noose around all things palestine, is the demand by some parts of the jewish community to feel they have the right to define prejudice against themselves, and the denial of that right is in itself (according to some of them) anti semitic. i can see that pov up to a point. but when it expands into including their state, it’s unrealistic. what’s next? the state being able to define prejudice against itself?

    imagine if every person could dictate when they were or were not the victim? that’s what we have laws and courts for. and imagine if the victim of a crime to decide on the punishment for that crime? i think it’s better to have standards across the board. if black people wanted to define prejudice against themselves, they would have to appeal to all the people. what if a billionaire wanted to define what prejudice against him was? rights for rich people! or a poor person for that matter. they would have to go to the courts. all those people screaming “white genocide”! imagine “i’m white so i should get to define what prejudice against me is and if you break my rules you get kicked out of the party”. hmm.

  6. HarryLaw on August 23, 2018, 5:57 pm

    The Labour party [LP] code say’s “It is not racist to assess the conduct of Israel” see paragraph 13 LP code of conduct, but then one of the examples in the IHRA which the LP look likely to agree to in full is “by claiming that the state of Israel is a racist endeavor” could be Anti-Semitic. In view of the recently passed and blatantly racist Israel state law these are contradictory rules. either Israel is a racist state, in which case the present LP code is acceptable and we can criticize it or if all the examples are put in the same criticism could be met with expulsion.

  7. JWalters on August 23, 2018, 7:20 pm

    It would be a tragedy if Brits were to lose the stomach to fight for the truth. And lose the stomach to battle for Britain against a duplicitous foreign country, one that is eviscerating Britain from within. Will the people of Britain be betrayed for money? Will the Zionist Big Brother crush the British people? Will the evacuation of Dunkirk and the Battle of Britain in the end be all for naught?

  8. pabelmont on August 23, 2018, 9:48 pm

    The bad definition of antisemitism includes: “Denying the Jewish people their right to self-determination, e.g., by claiming that the existence of a State of Israel is a racist endeavor.”

    Well, what arrant nonsense! I can (with some difficulty perhaps) agree that “the Jewish People” [sic] have a right to self-determination — in some land of their own — whilst not for a moment accepting that today’s (or yesterday’s) Israel is such a land and whilst also maintaining that today’s Israel is a racist endeavor.

    A lotta space in Greenland, and it’s warming up there, too! But not much space in Palestine that isn’t or wasn’t productively occupied in 1900-1948 overwhelmingly by non-Jews. Might be room in Germany, or room could be made, for a smallish Jewish State (like Andorra, Lichtenstein?) , and some justification for putting it there. The whole problem reminds me of the Merchant of Venice and the pound of flesh. Zionists want their state and feel that that desire grants them permission to commit any crime. Room for a small Jewish State could be made in Palestine, for that matter. Say the size of New York City or a bit bigger. (Same population.)

    A tough nut to crack.

    • RoHa on August 23, 2018, 9:59 pm

      “Room for a small Jewish State could be made in Palestine, for that matter.”

      Are you reviving the stunningly brilliant and tragically underrated RoHa Three State solution?

    • oldgeezer on August 23, 2018, 11:37 pm

      I kid you not but I once ran into a zionist who after finally conceding that Israel was an expansionist state opined that to deprive Jews of their chance of empire was antisemitic.

      I say let them have antartica. No peoples have a legitimate claim there. Who knows what untold riches may await them.

      They need to remove their hobnail boots from Palestinian necks. Israel has been a racist and criminal operation from the beginning.

      • RoHa on August 24, 2018, 2:40 am

        Hey! A lot of Antarctic is ours, and we have a legitimate claim because of Mawson or something.

        Keep your Zionists out. We don’t want them oppressing the penguins.

      • oldgeezer on August 24, 2018, 9:49 am


        lol ok…. Maybe, just maybe, zionists should be happy to live without having a special right to a second country on other peoples land.

        Tough gig.

      • Talkback on August 24, 2018, 5:44 pm

        RoHa: ” A lot of Antarctic is ours, and we have a legitimate claim because of Mawson or something.”

        Irrelevant. We are the Shmocks from outer space. After millions of years we are returning to our home planet. It’s time for you to leave this planet or we are going to expell you for demographic reasons. An insignificant number of you may stay. We are democrats after all. We are going to establish the one and only Shmock planet in the universe. If you don’t like it you are anti-Shmocks.

  9. RoHa on August 23, 2018, 9:54 pm

    I hope that this helps Jeremy to hold his position.

    Incidentally, I just posted this comment on the Media Diversified website:

    ‘Your headline needs correcting. It isn’t “their” truth. It’s THE truth, regardless of whoever wants to believe it or to suppress it. Saying “their truth” leads into the Zionist obfuscation of “differing narratives”, and that terminology is used to imply that the Zionist claims are as morally legitimate as the Palestinian claims.’

  10. RoHa on August 24, 2018, 12:57 am

    Off-topic, but I would like to make it clear that I welcome our new Prime Minister, the very wonderful Peter Dutton Julie Bishop Scott Morrison, and I have every confidence that he she will lead Australia as wisely as his her predecessors did.

  11. HarryLaw on August 24, 2018, 4:35 am

    I have an idea to solve this problem, it may also help Johnathan Cook and others when we contemplate future articles…
    “That thought spurred me to cast an eye over my back-catalogue of journalism. I have been based in Nazareth, in Israel’s Galilee, since 2001. In that time I have written – according to my website – more than 900 articles (plus another few hundred blog posts) on Israel, as well as three peer-reviewed books and a clutch of chapters in edited collections. That’s a lot of writing. Many more than a million words about Israel over nearly two decades.
    What shocked me, however, as I started to pore over these articles was that almost all of them – except for a handful dealing with internal Palestinian politics – would fall foul of at least one of these four additional IHRA examples Labour is about to adopt”.
    Before anyone pens an article or even opens their mouths on Israel/Palestine they should consult a large group of Lawyers [I know the collective name of such a group, but I am too much of a gentleman to use it here] preferably expensive ones who specialize and have intimate knowledge of Israel/Palestine affairs. Only if all those lawyers confirm unanimously that what is written or said is compatible with any code the Labour party eventually agree on can it be written, yes this solution will be very expensive, in Johnathan Cooks case several million pounds should cover it, [money well spent, sarc] but better than be accused of Anti-Semitism kicked out the party and possibly lose your job and social standing for life. Or, we should not tempt fate, and just keep our mouths shut, which is what all this is about in any case.

  12. Ossinev on August 24, 2018, 10:30 am

    A very encouraging and very positive development. I hope that this and other developments will be the basis for a whole new debate certainly here in the UK over the grounds for what I will call”exceptionalism” when it comes to addressing hatred of religions or religious groups or organisations. Simply put why do UK citizens ( and in the case in hand political parties ) be obliged to agree to / submit to a different set of standards in relation to practitioners of Judaism as opposed to practictioners of Islam or Catholicism etc.

    When it comes to any form of hatred of religions or racism then the same standard should apply for all here in the UK. The Holocaust IMHO gives no right to Jews to claim exceptional treatment in a country which had no part in the Holocaust and in a country which fought and suffered so much in the struggle to defeat Nazism. This can arguably be interpreted as a smear and a slur on the memory of all those who fought,died and suffered in the struggle against the Nazis.

    I am giving my opinion on this “exceptionalism” as a UK citizen. Citizens of other European countries can review their own countries roles and actions during the Nazi period and of course decide for themselves what is appropriate.

  13. HarryLaw on August 25, 2018, 5:20 am

    The latest attack on Jeremy Corbyn for using the term ‘Zionist’ is proof that my advice in my comment above was sound. Anyone writing an article or making any comment at all on Israel needs to get Lawyer-ed up. This from LP code… “It is not permissible to use ‘Zionist’ [and still less any pejorative abbreviation] such as ‘zio’ which should have no place in LP discourse] as a code word for ‘Jew’, Chakrabarti recommended that Labour Party members should only use the term ‘Zionist’ advisedly, carefully and never euphemistically or as part of personal abuse, such language may otherwise provide evidence of Anti-Semitic intent.
    The zionists will have us all in jail for any word taken out of context or uttered without it first being run past a team of lawyers, better not say anything about Israel, unless its something good. [sarc]

    • HarryLaw on August 25, 2018, 5:53 am

      Re the use of ‘Zionist’ as code word for ‘Jew’, in the US alone there are probably 10 times more Christian ‘Zionists’ than there are Jews, where does all this end up?

  14. Ossinev on August 25, 2018, 7:39 am

    ” Or, we should not tempt fate, and just keep our mouths shut, which is what all this is about in any case”

    Au contraire mon brave I believe that that the “debate” about JC and the alleged A/S in the Labour Party is hopefully starting to open peoples eyes to Zioland`s meddling in UK politics and that people should continue to air their views. I hope it does reach a point where there is a legal battle of some kind but I doubt that the Zios will want it to get that far as in dirty washing airing public etc.

  15. HarryLaw on August 26, 2018, 3:52 am

    The Labour party will regret including its code on Antisemitism into its rule book. Many of the points at issue are not just difficult to define, but impossible to define, who or how is it possible to define Jewishness, how can Zionist be defined, is it a person who supports one state in Palestine or two states, is that person of Jewish religion or more likely Christian, or could it be ‘Certain perceptions of the complainant or the accused including ‘intent’? Books have been written on these matters and the jury is still out on what they mean. In other words as former Judge Stephen Sedley who is himself Jewish, quoting a well known QC.. “A recent opinion obtained from Hugh Tomlinson QC, a prominent human rights lawyer, by a group of NGOs concerned with Palestine and Israel, concludes that the IHRA definition is unclear and confusing (it could be suggested, in fact, that it is calculatedly misleading), that the government’s adoption of it has no legal status, and that the overriding legal duty of public authorities is to preserve freedom of expression”. The Labour party has made a rod for its own back, in the latest incident Jeremy Corbyn has been reported to the LP for Anti Semism
    “It comes after a recently departed Labour staffer involved in investigating complaints raised concerns about the remarks. Dan Hogan, a former member of Labour’s governance and legal unit, said on Twitter: “If Corbyn were any other member, he would have been suspended and investigated, and the [National Executive Committee] would nod through the bulging report on his offences. He would join the long queue of other awful people waiting for a disciplinary hearing with the National Constitutional Committee.” Notice how Hogan former member of the legal unit preempts any legal process and calls the accused “awful people”.
    Stephen Sedley’s piece on the London Review of Books can be found here, comments are worth reading too.

  16. HarryLaw on August 28, 2018, 8:45 am

    The latest brouhaha concerning the use of the word Zionist really ought to be resolved, the Labour party through the Chakrabarti report recommended that Labour party members should only use “the term ‘Zionist’ advisedly, carefully and never euphemistically or as part of personal abuse” Such language may otherwise provide evidence of antisemitic intent. In my opinion Zionism is a political ideology based on the legitimacy of a homeland in Palestine for people of Jewish origin. That homeland was achieved in 1948/9 within borders recommended and later recognized by the UNGA . The contemporary views on the use of the word Zionist revolve around the notion that the whole of Palestine from the river to the sea is sovereign Israeli territory, hence the view that the settlement enterprise is a good thing and definitely not grave war crimes as set out in International law.
    These are some of the differences in the views of who are Zionists. Professor N Finkelstein and most member states at the UN are Zionists i.e. they are those who regard the state of Israel within the borders set out in 1948/9 by the UN as being legitimate and should be respected as should all other aspects of International law. The ‘other’ Zionists however, believe in the greater Israel project and regard the whole of the West Bank and now the Golan Heights as sovereign Israeli territory. These two views of what Zionism is need to be split up so that there is no doubt as to who are the ‘war criminal Zionists’ and their supporters, and those Zionists who believe in the two states in Palestine objective and are in line with UNSC resolutions. ‘Zionist’ as a term of legitimate complaint could, and should be directed at those people who support the settlement enterprise and therefore grave war crimes [see Geneva Conventions 49.6, ICC Act and ICJ [World court opinion].

    • Citizen on August 30, 2018, 5:39 am

      ” These two views of what Zionism is need to be split up so that there is no doubt as to who are the ‘war criminal Zionists’ and their supporters, and those Zionists who believe in the two states in Palestine objective and are in line with UNSC resolutions. ‘Zionist’ as a term of legitimate complaint could, and should be directed at those people who support the settlement enterprise and therefore grave war crimes”

      Reminds me of current US political discussions on cable tv news/infotainment shows, where much confusion in the audience derives from those conflating legal and illegal immigration by their usage of the unadorned term “immigrants” devoid of whether vetted, documented, or not.

    • echinococcus on August 30, 2018, 9:22 am

      These two views of what Zionism is need to be split up so that there is no doubt as to who are the ‘war criminal Zionists’ and their supporters, and those Zionists who believe in the two states in Palestine objective and are in line with UNSC resolutions.

      Doesn’t make any difference. All of them are on Palestinian land without Palestinian authorization. If anyone believes that a permission by colonialist murderers controlling the UNSC overrides that he should say so, in so many words.
      Also, being in line with UNSC to continue Zionist expansion while having talks to Kingdom Come means shit.
      The war crime is that of invading and ethnic-cleansing Palestine, before the other war crimes.

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