I turned on Newsnight last night and the subject was the Labour Party anti-Semite row “that just won’t go away”.
It reported that ‘The Times’ was publishing proof that Jeremy Corbyn hosted an event (in 2010) where it was said Israeli’s were behaving like the new Nazis. The event was called ‘Never Again for Anyone – From Auschwitz to Gaza’ so you don’t need to be Poirot to work out its content and how, in the opinion of at least one Jewish Holocaust speaker, Hitler left his mark on Jews by nazifying his victims.
The reason the Labour Party (and some Conservatives) are struggling to deal with this issue is that the large sections of the British media who are biased against them and, Jeremy Corbyn in particular, know that the level of knowledge the general public have with regards to the complexities of The State of Israel is at best, limited.
You would have to have studied modern history to at least ‘A’ Level standard to fully understand the ‘Balfour Declaration’ or why and how The State of Israel was created in ’48. The media know that 95% of the population aren’t educated to that level so as a consequence, this is easy pickings for them.
The creation of a Jewish homeland in 1948 (against British wishes) was backed by President Truman but wasn’t just because of WWII, it went back way further than that, way back into the previous century and beyond. It wasn’t just Hitler who persecuted Jews, he just took it to a barbaric level.
What the Labour Party have always had issues with is the subsequent actions of Israel in the region, and the fear that Jewish settlers have become ‘nazified’ in their actions towards Palestinians. The claim is the treatment of Palestinians often contravenes international law and no one seems to do anything about it.
If you see some of the instructions handed to Israeli reservists, politicians raise a valid point when they are saying that the practices being carried out would not be accepted anywhere else. In the British Armed services they would result in a court martial and probably, prison.
If you try to read the Balfour Declaration and the 1948 agreement, it is incredibly complex but what is certain in that several British politicians were concerned about destabilising the region by creating an American backed state that was non-secular and removed Palestinian citizens from their homes.
These complexities have been disregarded and the result has been media outlets, with the backing of pro-Zionist politicians, creating an ideology that if you show any concern towards international law and civil rights in Israel, you are somehow antisemitic. There are plenty of Jews who are ashamed of some of the Israeli behaviour towards Palestinians; are they antisemitic too?
I have no doubt that there are or have been MP’s who make sweeping generalisations of Jews but there is no way it is being portrayed in the media in a manner that is responsible or correct. The only political parties in Britain that carry such ideologies are, for the time being at least, on the margins and indulging in fuckwittery.
It is the responsibility of government and opposition to call out racism and prejudice and largely, it does so. However, it is also the responsibility to call out behaviour that may be in contravention of international law and human rights. As difficult and problematic as it is, you can’t just let a nation behave how it chooses just because it has the financial and military backing of the USA.
Some of the brightest brains in the world have tried and failed to resolve this conflict but if we are to evolve, we should learn the mistakes from apartheid, not condone them.
In summary, highlighting alleged war crimes does not make an individual or a political party of any colour, antisemitic.
It’s a convenient lie.