Left antisemitism

Parts of "left" link with right on antisemitism

Published on: Wed, 26/02/2020 - 12:13
Author

Mohan Sen

On 24 February anti-far right campaign Hope Not Hate and the Jewish charity Community Security Trust published a report on London-based antisemitic conspiracy group Keep Talking.

Since HnH and the CST secretly infiltrated Keep Talking in early 2017, it has hosted “an array of both left-wing and right-wing speakers, who have discussed a wide variety of conspiracy theories”. Particular focuses have included 9/11, terror attacks in London, historical assassinations, the murder of Jo Cox, the Skripal affair and Syria.

In addition “antisemitic conspiracy theories are at the core of the group.

The best medicine

Published on: Wed, 19/02/2020 - 11:44
Author

Colin Foster

The Labour Party machine is hastening to “clean house”. It announced at the end of January that it had expelled 45 members over antisemitism in 2019. Another 104 members voluntarily quit in 2019 while charges of antisemitism were pending.

In 2018, ten people were expelled and in 2017, one.

296 members were suspended over antisemitism complaints in 2019, compared with 98 suspended in 2018. The numbers are still small compared to the many hundreds “auto-excluded” in 2015 and 2016 (without a hearing and often without precise charges), not for antisemitism but for left-wing associations, current

Being “minimally civil”

Published on: Wed, 12/02/2020 - 10:32
Author

Cathy Nugent

Keith Kahn-Harris, in his book Strange Hate: Antisemitism, racism and the limits of diversity, argues that selective anti-racism and selective racism have become dominant modes.

Certain minorities, and certain sub-sections of minorities, are approved when they express a political or social orientation that is a close fit to another group. In other words, there is a process of political selecting out going on.

For Kahn-Harris, Jews have precipitated the development of selective anti-racism, and in his book how Jewish people are treated forms a “case study”. Unfortunately he does not make any

Three decades of Socialist Worker on antisemitism

Published on: Mon, 27/01/2020 - 21:19
Author

Dale Street

When Sunderland Polytechnic Students Union (SPSU) banned a campus Jewish Society in 1985, Socialist Worker (weekly newspaper of the Socialist Workers Party) rallied to its defence.

The SPSU was “quite clearly not racist. … One thing is clear – they are not racists, unlike the Zionists who oppose them.” (SW/928)

Socialist Worker conceded in passing that “it can be argued whether the SPSU was tactically wise to ban the Zionists.” But the ban itself was not criticised. In fact, the paper uncritically quoted the SPSU Treasurer’s rationale for the ban:

“The students union has a policy that Zionism

Other motions not passed - AWL conference 2019

Published on: Tue, 21/01/2020 - 14:28
Author

Angela Driver, David Pendletone, Simon Nelson, Luke Hardy

Motions on left antisemitism, the Hijab in schools, and social security and Labour's policy, were all submitted to AWL conference 2019. The conference decided that the first of these motions - on left antisemitism - should not be voted on, after a debate; the second, on the Hijab in schools, fell; the third - on social security - were not voted on, as decided before any debate.

The Board of Deputies' proposals are not the way to fight antisemitism

Published on: Fri, 17/01/2020 - 18:11
Author

Sacha Ismail

The Board of Deputies of British Jews has asked candidates for the Labour leadership and deputy leadership to sign up to ten proposals for tackling antisemitism.

For sure the party needs a new, much more aggressive approach on fighting antisemitism. But the Board of Deputies’ proposals are both inadequate and, in many respects, wrong and harmful.

Labour needs:

• Serious political education and discussion about antisemitism and fighting it, as part of but distinct within wider antiracist education, throughout the party. This must include discussing antisemitic reactionary anticapitalism, and

Poor choices for Labour leader

Published on: Wed, 08/01/2020 - 12:11
Author

Sacha Ismail

Labour’s National Executive Committee has set a short timetable for the leadership election. MPs and MEPs have one week to nominate candidates (7-13 January).

Constituency Labour Party [CLPs] and affiliates have one month (15 January-14 February). Voting will run a month and a bit (21 February-4 April).

New members can vote if they join by 20 January. There will be a registered supporters system, in addition to affiliate supporters (eg people registered through their unions).

To get on the ballot, candidates need 10% of Labour MPs and MEPs (22), and then either 5% of constituency parties (33)

LRC shame

Published on: Wed, 08/01/2020 - 11:48

Over recent times, and recent weeks especially, the Labour Representation Committee (LRC), once a relatively lively and open group of the Labour left, has descended into little more than a Jackie Walker fan club, a cult dedicated to the denial of antisemitism.

Over the weekend 4-5 January, it has crossed the line. Its Facebook account, having previously posted conspiratorial crap and posts about violent, right-wing Jew-hate being the only “real” antisemitism, shared content by Laura Stuart, a far-right activist who has circulated racist material including from David Duke of the Ku Klux Klan.

W

Left antisemitism is a form of racism

Published on: Wed, 08/01/2020 - 11:05
Author

Angela Driver

Left antisemitism has long used tropes popularised by Stalinist “anti-Zionist” campaigns against the Jews, where “Zionist” was a proxy for “Jewish”.

This commonly includes tropes about Jews being manipulative, powerful, and wealthy, saying Jewish people tend to be imperialist capitalists, and to associate and collaborate with Nazis and the far right. This language, these tropes, group Jewish people together as a group to be hated in the same way that other forms of racism do.

In our press we have examined whether the proposal for “one state” as a solution to the conflict between Israel and

Sanders, Corbyn and anti-Semitism

Published on: Wed, 18/12/2019 - 13:13
Author

Eric Lee

Bernie Sanders has a proud record both of supporting Israel and of being critical of its government. He summed up his views in a recent article for the magazine Jewish Currents, in which he wrote;

“I think it is very important for everyone, but particularly for progressives, to acknowledge the enormous achievement of establishing a democratic homeland for the Jewish people after centuries of displacement and persecution.”

The choice of the phrase “in particular for progressives” is deliberate. Because people on the Left, in recent years, have not acknowledged that the creation of Israel was,

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