Baroness Zionist Royall’s Flawed Report on ‘anti-Semitism’ at Oxford University Labour Club

Baroness Zionist Royall’s Flawed Report on ‘anti-Semitism’ at Oxford University Labour Club

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Post-Blog

Now we know why the Labour Party failed to
publish the Royall Report

Labour’s Baroness Royal
Front cover of Royall Report

Background to the Royall Report on
anti-Semitism at Oxford University Labour Club


Earlier this year, as
a result of the artificial media manufactured story about rampant ‘anti-Semitism’
in the Labour Party and at Oxford University Labour Club in particular, the
Labour Party set up an inquiry under Baroness Janet Royall into allegations of
‘anti-Semitism’.
the good Baroness is not quite with it
Royall, was a
former adviser to Neil Kinnock and someone always sympathetic
to Zionism and Israel, (she went on a Labour Friends of Israel
trip to Israel in 2007).  When the Executive Summary of her Report appeared back in May she wrote
on the web site of the Jewish Labour Movement:
 ‘I know that you will share my disappointment
and frustration that the main headline coming out of my inquiry is that there
is no institutional Antisemitism in Oxford University Labour Club.’ 
This was an extremely
strange thing for someone who is genuinely concerned about anti-Semitism to
say.  Why on earth should anyone be
disappointed with the fact that there is no anti-Semitism at OULC unless they
were a Zionist who wanted to find anti-Semitism? 
Chalmers made it clear that it wasn’t anti-Semitism that was the problem

The Jewish Labour
Movement, on whose web site she wrote, is the British wing of the
Israeli Labour Party and it is affiliated to the World Zionist Organisation.  The WZO directly funds the establishment of settlements
in Palestine and it is one of the main organisations responsible for the apartheid
structures of dispossession, discrimination and ethnic cleansing in Israel. As I wrote
in May: [Zionist Royalle Finds What She Wanted to Find]

‘the ‘findings’ from Baroness Royall’s ‘investigation’ into
anti-Semitism at Oxford University Labour Club were written before she even
entered the hallowed portals of Oxford.  It is fitting that they weren’t
accompanied by anything as grand as evidence.  Indeed that was the whole
purpose of the report.  It is evidence free.’
Chalmer’s Linked In profile
Out of her
depth

The overriding impression that comes
across is that Royall is simply out of her depth.  By her own admission she was ‘daunted’ by the
task.  She not only does not understand
the differences between Zionism and anti-Semitism or related issues, she also doesn’t seem to
understand that one of the purposes of compiling her Report was to investigate
whether in fact there was anti-Semitism at OULC.  Instead she proceeds by assertion and takes
for granted that which she is supposed to be proving.  
If there is anti-Semitism at OULC then Royall fails to provide the evidence.  Royall
retreats into generalities such as ‘there
appears to be cultural problem in which behaviour and language that would once
have been intolerable is now tolerated.’
Apart from benefiting from a proof
reader the Report substitutes vague generalities and sloppy phraseology for
concrete actualities and specifics.  
Chalmers was part of the unsuccessful disaffiliation from NUS campaign
The catalyst
for the Royall investigation

It should have been a very simple Report
to write.  Asa Winstanley investigated
the background to the ‘anti-Semitism’ allegations at OULC.  It is clear that they consisted of nothing
but reheated versions of the traditional libel that is levelled against
opponents of Zionism and Israel’s racism. 
In his article  How Israel lobby manufactured UK Labour Party’s
anti-Semitism crisis
,
Winstanley revealed
that Alex Chalmers, who resigned as co-Chair of Oxford University Labour Club
because of ‘anti-Semitism’ had been an intern in the Israel advocacy and
propaganda group BICOM.  
In his resignation statement, which Royall
makes Appendix 1 to her Report, Chalmers stated that his resignation ‘comes in the light of OULC’s decision at
this evening’s general meeting to endorse Israel Apartheid Week.’ 
What has this to do with anti-Semitism?  Perhaps Royall considers the fact that more
Israeli Jews support the expulsion of Arabs than oppose it to be  irrelevant to the question of whether Israel
is an Apartheid state.  More likely she
is ignorant about this and other matters, but such a belief isn’t anti-Semitic.  Yet Royall is seemingly incapable of making
what is quite a simple judgment, viz. that Chalmer’s resignation was a
propaganda ploy.
When Royall produced
her original findings, Labour’s National Executive Committee agreed that the
‘evidence’ on which it was based would be printed at the same time as the Chakrabarti Report, of
which Royall was a Vice-Chair.
When Chakrabarti
reported, there was no mention of Royall’s Report or the evidence it apparently
contained.  Clearly a decision had been
taken that there was so little evidence and so much conjecture, that it would
be best forgotten.  However the
Jewish Chronicle, like a dog with a bone, decided that it would publish the
Report that Royall herself leaked as part of an article Baroness
Royall report reveals Oxford Labour students engaged in antisemitism
As I wrote at the
time the Executive Summary was published, one of the more ludicrous findings of
the Report was that
“Many students
reported that should a Jewish student preface a remark ‘as a Jew…’ they are likely to face ridicule and behaviour
that would not be acceptable for someone saying ‘as a woman…’ or ‘as an
Afro-Caribbean…’ 
Ludicrous because it begs the question, in what role
are Jewish students claiming that being Jewish is relevant?  If it is to do with Israel’s treatment of the
Palestinians it is a complete irrelevancy. 
After all it is agreed by everyone that holding Jews responsible for the
actions of Israel is anti-Semitic.  The
Zionist authored Working
Definition of anti-Semitism
defines one of the manifestations of
anti-Semitism as ‘Holding Jews
collectively responsible for actions of the state of Israel.’ 
Why then should it
be considered relevant if someone claims to be Jewish in the context of a
discussion of Israel or Zionism?  Because
this is what Royall’s ‘as a Jew’ finding
is about?  Unless of course what is
really being suggested is that as Israel is a Jewish state, Jews do have a
special role, in which case this is another example of Zionists trying to have
their racist cake and eat it!
Ironically, at almost exactly the
same time as Royall was reporting, David Aaronovitch penned an article ‘Have
I got Jews for you!’
in the Jewish Chronicle of 5th May 2016.  Aaronovitch waxed lyrical about Jews who
spoke up as Jews:

‘my online world was invaded by the Asajews…. The “these
people” were the Asajews. I heard quite a few of them on Any Answers last
week. “As a Jew myself, I want to tell you that…” And there followed
something that would say that the contributor believed that Labour had no
antisemitism problem and that the real problem was those who kept on going on
about antisemitism when what they were truly objecting to was any criticism of
the state of Israel…. The Asajews used in this way are just a stage army and
their deployment, frankly borders on the disgraceful.’ 

Of course Aaronovitch
was complaining about Jews who spoke out as Jews against what Israel was doing
in their name.  Royall is complaining
about the reaction to Jewish students who use their Jewishness to justify what
Israel is doing. 
As Asa Winstanley comprehensively
demonstrated in another article, Instigator
of anti-Semitism scam kicked out of Labour
one of
the other instigators of the anti-Semitism allegations at Oxford, former
co-Chair David Klemper, was expelled from the Labour Party for having signed
the nomination papers of a Lib Dem candidate at the local elections.  Chalmers left the Labour Party soon after his
resignation and he too signed the same nomination papers.  On his FB page he demonstrated that he is an
extremely reactionary Zionist operative when he displayed a ‘No thanks NUS’
graphic during the ballot as to whether Oxford University Student Union
should remain affiliated to  the National
Union of Students.  In fact those
supporting affiliation to NUS won the ballot by a thousand votes.

A Shoddy Report
By any stretch of the imagination,
Royall’s Report is shoddy and insubstantial. 
It is no wonder that according to the Jewish Chronicle report, Chalmers
was ‘”disappointed” Royall’s report had not gone into more
detail about the “problem” at the club.’ 
The problem was there was no details.
Royall begins with a favourite Zionist
meme, namely that anti-Semitism was an ‘ancient
virus [that]… had infected our Party’
and for good measure she later repeats
the comparison as well as quoting Gordon Brown to the effect that ‘Together
our renewed efforts can rid the world of this
ancient virus.”  This is an integral part of Zionist ideology.  An early Zionist, Leo Pinsker, the founder of
the Lovers of Zion, wrote in his pamphlet ‘Auto Emancipation’ that 

‘Judaephobia is then a mental
disease, and as a mental disease it is hereditary, and having been inherited
for 2, 000 years it is incurable. [L.
Pinsker, Autoemanzipation, ein Mahnruf an
seine]

Pinsker was a doctor and therefore
defined anti-Semitism as Judaephobia.  It
is part of the Zionist fable that anti-Semitism applies to all of history and
all classes equally.  It is an
incurable disease that may mutate and change its form but it bears much the same
characteristics.  And of course, if it is incurable, then why fight it.  Traditionally Zionism represented an abandonment of the fight against anti-Semitism.
According to the Zionists, anti-Semitism and racism
don’t have any relationship to class or material factors, they aren’t a product
of particular types of societies. 
Anti-Semitism although a product of non-Jews and their reaction to Jews must
ultimately relate to something about Jews themselves.  Traditionally this was indeed the attitude of
Zionism.  Herzl wrote in his pamphlet The
Jewish State that

When we sink we become a revolutionary proletariat… when we rise
there rises also the terrible power of our purse.
[The Jewish
State, p.26]

Anti-Semitism was the product of the Jewish
presence in non-Jewish society.  In his
autobiography, Trial and Error, the President of the Zionist Organisation, Chaim Weizmann, who later
went on to become Israel’s first President, wrote that:

Whenever
the quantity of Jews in any country reaches saturation point, that country
reacts against them. In the early years of this century, Whitechapel and the
great industrial centres of England were in that sense saturated… The
determining factor in this matter is not the solubility of the Jews but the
solvent power of the country. England had reached the point when she could or
would absorb so many Jews and no more.

Like all diseases anti-Semitism affects
everybody though some non-Jews, for example Muslims, might be more susceptible.
 Fortunately today we have strong political
retrovirals so this disease can be treated but the main thing is that it is a
form of pathology unrelated to society or surroundings.  In other words Royall starts off her Report with
a racist analysis of racism.
Royall is nothing if not unoriginal.  She just loves to repeat without question
commonly held beliefs, no matter how wrong they are.  She states in her introduction that ‘For many years, Jews of all ages have
strongly supported Labour’
.  In fact
Jewish support for the Labour Party has been declining ever since the
1960’s.  A Jewish academic and Jewish
Chronicle journalist, Geoffrey Alderman, explained this in some detail in The
Jewish Community in British Politics
, in a chapter, ‘Return to the Right’:  As early as 1961 ‘over 40% of Anglo-Jewry was located in the upper two social classes
whereas these categories accounted for less than 20% of the general
population.’
  The conclusion Alderman
drew was that ‘at the time of the 1964
general election which Labour won, ¾ the top 2 social classes supported the
Conservative Party.’
(p.137)  In
other words Jews voted like any other of their social class and
predominantly for the Tory Party.  The
myth that Jews have always voted for the Labour Party is exactly that – a myth.
This however is but one example of the
problems with the Royall Report.  Another
example is where Royall declares that she would be bound by the ‘London
Declaration (2009) of the Inter-parliamentary Coalition for Combating
Antisemitism’. 
You can gauge the nature of this
Declaration by the section ‘Challenging Antisemitism’,
point 1 of which states that ‘Parliamentarians
shall expose, challenge, and isolate political actors who engage in hate
against Jews and target the State of Israel as a Jewish collectivity.
’  Since, according to the Zionists’ Working
Definition on anti-Semitism
, it is anti-Semitic to hold Jews collectively
responsible for the actions of the Israeli state, then the London Declaration,
which declares that Israel is part of a ‘Jewish
collectivity’
must by definition be anti-Semitic!
What a muddle Royall gets herself into.  The only explanation of Royall’s logic is Humpty
Dumpty’s dictum that ‘Words mean what I
want them to mean.  The only question is
who is master!’
.  If Royall’s report
is guided by an anti-Semitic Declaration, then it is clearly not worth the
paper it is written on.
Royall accepts that there is no
‘institutional anti-Semitism’ within OULC, but she also makes it clear that she
is disappointed by her own finding! 

Jewish Labour Movement
Royall makes a series of
recommendations, the most controversial of which is the proposal that 
Training should be organised by Labour
Students together with the Jewish Labour Movement for officers of all Labour
Clubs in dealing with antisemitism.’
The Jewish Labour Movement is an openly
Zionist organisation.  According
to WikipediaIt views Zionism as the
national liberation movement of the Jewish people’. 
Zionism is the movement which established the
State of Israel.  A state which calls
itself a Jewish state which was founded on the expulsion of ¾ million
Palestinians and which refuses a right of return to those refugees at the very
same time as it encourages Jews who have no connection to Israel to ‘return’ to
what it terms their ancient homeland.  Apart
from the conflation of Jews and Zionism which Royall otherwise purports to
deplore, the very idea that Jews belong, not in the countries where they were
born but in Palestine, is itself a racist and anti-Semitic idea.  Despite this, Royall considers that the JLM
is a fit body to conduct anti-racist training. 
It is like asking the Yorkshire Ripper to take over the management of a
woman’s refuge project.
Royall, like Chakrabarti, describes how
the Jewish Labour Movement is the successor to Poalei Zion, which affiliated to
the Labour Party in 1920.  She seems to
think that this is a matter of pride rather than shame.  Poalei Zion in 1920 was a tiny organisation
with little implantation in the Jewish working-class in Britain.  Jewish trade unionists, tended, almost
without exception, to be hostile to Zionism which posited the struggle for
socialism in Palestine rather than where they lived.  Socialist Zionism was thus an eternal
contradiction.  The affiliation of Poalei
Zion was a measure of the pro-imperialist politics of the Labour Party.  It was because the Labour Party under the Fabians
and the Webbs, Sydney Webb later became the Colonial Secretary Lord Passfield,
believed in the idea of Empire as a form of trusteeship for the uncivilised
natives, that they took so warmly to Poalei Zion with its rhetoric of
developing the land for the backward Arabs.

Allegations of anti-Semitism
Intriguingly Royall also mentions one
serious false allegation of anti-Semitism that was reported to the Police.  Asa Winstanley suggests that this refers to
false allegations against Rachel
Bradshaw of Stirling University
However Royall gives no further
details.

Anti-Semitism
Royall makes a dogs dinner of the
question, ‘what is anti-Semitism’.  Zionists
of course have difficulty with this because their overriding need is to try and
persuade people that opposition to a state, the State of Israel, is anti-Semitic.  The problem with this is that Israel, like
any other state, is not a human being. 
It is difficult to be racist towards a state.  Anti-Semitism is therefore redefined as
hostility to the Jewish state. 
According to this not very convincing narrative people oppose Israel not
for what it does, the mass murders, the entrenched discrimination, the Occupation,
torture and imprisonment of children etc. but because the state is Jewish!
This is the ‘new anti-Semitism’.  What it does is enable all those political
forces which have historically been most antagonistic to Jews as Jews to
pretend that they too are opposed to anti-Semitism.  It reaches its ludicrous apogee in groups like
the BNP or English Defence League which combine traditional anti-Semitism with
avid support for Israel and Zionism.
Thus Royall cites the Zionist Community
Security Trust’s definition of anti-Semitism as being ‘hostility, phobia or bias against Judaism or individual Jews as a group.’  This is a nonsensical definition.  Hostility to Judaism, a religion, might
indeed be a cover for hostility to Jews in much the same way  as opposition to Israel might be a disguise
for anti-Semitism.  However it is not
very usual and why define individual Jews as a group? 
Defining anti-Semitism isn’t rocket
science.  It is hatred or hostility, discrimination
or violence towards Jews as Jews.  The
more sophisticated anti-Semites hold to a conspiracy theory in which Jews are
the ones who control and manipulate world events and countries.  Therefore a belief in a world Jewish conspiracy is normally seen as anti-Semitic.
Reading through this section what I find
most startling is how superficial is Royall’s grasp of what racism or
oppression is, still less where it comes from. 
Royall makes the trite observation that ‘oppression of any sort… (is) the strong oppressing the weak,  the rich oppressing the poor.’  She doesn’t ascribe agency to anyone or
anything.  Royall doesn’t see oppression
or racism in any context.  It just
happens, it exists, it has no social origin or political context. 
Royall also makes the equally trite
comment that to some people Jews cannot be the victims or discriminated
against, without ever saying who these people are.  Having given us this profound insight she
then jumps to observing that there is a ‘view
that criticism of the government of Israel is not anti-Semitic (it is not)’

and therefore ‘being anti-Zionist cannot
be anti-Semitic.  Yes it can.
’  Apart from anything else this is as good an
example of a non-sequitur as one is likely to find.  The premise, Royall’s observations on racism
and anti-Semitism do not lead to the concluson she draws.  It is an example of the shoddy methodology of
her Report.
Clearly there are some people who are anti-Semitic who disguise or hide this as anti-Zionism.  I have some experience of such people for
example Gilad Atzmon, the anti-Semitic jazzman. 
However they are enormously aided by the false accusations of ‘anti-Semitism’
that are made by Zionists.  As I wrote in
The
Seamy Side of Solidarity
‘Guardian 19.2.07. ‘Like the boy who cried
wolf, the charge of “anti-semitism” has been made so often against
critics of Zionism and the Israeli state that people now have difficulty
recognising the genuine article.’

The irony is that it is Royall herself
who is providing the alibi and rationale for the making of false accusations of
anti-Semitism.  What Royall is doing is
giving cover to those who are anti-Semitic. If someone is an anti-Semite then
they aren’t an anti-Zionist.  The two are
mutually exclusive.  If anti-Zionism is a
disguise then clearly it cannot be the same as the thing it is disguising.  Otherwise it isn’t a disguise!  It’s a matter of logic but one which seems to
entirely escape the good Baroness.
When Royall say that ‘not all anti-Zionists
are anti-Semites and anti-Zionism is not necessarily anti-Semitic’
what she is
really saying is that normally anti-Zionists are anti-Semites and that normally
anti-Zionism is anti-Semitic.  The  proof for this assertion is a lengthy quotation
from John Mann MP’s All Parliamentary Inquiry into Anti-Semitism which manages
to find that Zionism was is ‘a
movement of national liberation.’ 
It is a strange national liberation
movement which formed an alliance in 1917 with British imperialism in the form
of the Balfour Declaration!  A movement
that was sponsored by the British occupying power in Palestine.  The Fraser
v UCU
Employment Tribunal observed of John Mann that
when it came to
anti-Semitism in the context of debate about the Middle East, he [John Mann MP]
announced, “It’s clear to me where the line is…” but unfortunately eschewed the
opportunity to locate it for us. Both parliamentarians clearly enjoyed making
speeches. Neither seemed at ease with the idea of being required to answer a
question not to his liking.[1]
MacPherson
Like many people, Royall fails to
understand the MacPherson principle (which Chakrabarti to her credit did get
right).  A racial incident is not,
contrary to Royall’s assertion, ‘an
incident that is perceived to be racist by the victim or any other person
.’  MacPherson said that for the purpose of an investigation
by the Police, in the specific circumstances of the institutional racism of the
Metropolitan Police in the Stephen Lawrence affair, where someone claims to be the
victim of a racial incident the Police must record it as such and treat it as
such.  That doesn’t mean that it is a
racial incident.  Only the courts can
make that decision.  The extension of the
MacPherson principle to ‘any other person’ demonstrates just how much Royall is
at sea.
Oxford University Labour Club
When it comes to OULC and anti-Semitism Royall
has virtually nothing to say.  It is no
wonder that the NEC didn’t publish her Report. 
She found that ‘some Jewish members
do not feel comfortable attending meetings.’
  Perhaps that is because they are also Zionists
who don’t like having to defend Israel. 
What has that got to do with anti-Semitism?  Royall accepts that when it comes to a debate
on Israel and Palestine ‘the debate is
politically chared and robust.’
  She
alleges, again without any examples, that ‘at
least on one occasion the boundaries of acceptability were breached.’ 
And that is it, no evidence or examples
are given. 
Royall says that she regrets that ‘incidences of anti-Semitism’ (Royall
doesn’t insert the word ‘alleged’) ‘were
not reported to any authority’
and concludes that ‘this makes it very difficult to verify’.  In which case how does she know there were
such incidences?  It is such leaps of
logic which render this Report so enticing, if only as an example of how not to
argue a case.
When it comes to the meat of the Report,
specific allegations of anti-Semitism against individual members of OULC there
is an even thinner gruel.  She concludes
that ‘it is clear to me from the weight
of witnessed allegations received  that
there have been some incidents of anti-Semitic behaviour and that it is
appropriate for the disciplinary procedures of our Party to be invoked.’
  At no stage are we given any examples of
these allegations still less any detail. 
However Royall then goes on to say that ‘it is not clear to me to what extent this behaviour constituted intentional
or deliberate acts of anti-Semitism. 
This is particularly true of historical hearsay evidence  .’
 
Which at the very least casts doubt as to whether what is alleged is anti-Semitism
at all.  In any event she provides no
examples of what she means before concluding that she sees no value in pursuing
the very disciplinary cases that she said it would be appropriate to
pursue!  Really you couldn’t make it up.
And that is the sum total of the
allegations of anti-Semitism in Oxford University Labour Club.  The 
clear and obvious conclusion is that the affair was contrived by a
manipulator who was co-Chair of OULC, Alex Chalmers, who made allegations of anti-Semitism
in the context of support for the Palestinians. 
For him ‘Jews’ means supporters of Israel.  It is not surprising that he has refused to
answer Asa Winstanley’s questions and has gone to some considerable lengths to
cover his tracks, for example deleting his profile on Linked In.  Of Royall’s
report it is fair to say that the least said the soonest mended!

 

 

 

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