Tony Greenstein | 23 July 2019 | Post Views:

Corbyn’s Latest Anti-Semitism Proposals Prove that He is a Victim of the Stockholm Syndrome

Labour’s Pathetic Analysis of ‘Zionism’ Throws the Palestinians Under the Bus

Labour’s sanitised version of Israel as the cultural fulfilment of being Jewish doesn’t seem to include the soldiers above expressing such delight at blowing up 100 homes and making 1,000 people homeless.

Labour’s Pathetic Statement on Zionism

What is most depressing about Labour’s new Web Page on Anti-Semitism is not that it gets most things wrong, which it does, nor that it indulges in what Salo Baron called the‘lachrymose version of Jewish history’, but its clumsy, childish anti-intellectualism.

By lachrymose I mean the tale of never ending woe, the Zionist fable that Jews were always persecuted, poor dears, non-stop for 2,000 years. They weren’t. For many of those years they ruled over others and occasionally suffered terribly for it but the Jewish experience in the Jewish diaspora was a mixed and rich one.

It is also true that Jewish communities prospered in particular in Islamic countries where the oldest Jewish communities were to be found, such as in Iraq, until Israel and Zionism destabilised those countries. That was why, in Iraq and Morocco Zionist agents planted bombs in Jewish places to simulate anti-Semitism.

In its childish simplicity coupled with a poverty of thought, Labour’s statement completely fails to place anti-Semitism in any form of context. It is a childish monologue of good people and bad people. It is the kind of history that would be rejected in a GCSE essay.

For example how does what it terms ‘anti-Semitism’ relate to other forms of racism? Racism isn’t just a jumble of stereotypes and conspiracy theories in the heads of fools.  It is a system of ideas linked to power structures that result in deprivation, detriment and physical suffering.

It is a fact that Jews today form the most privileged section of the White population. There is no Jewish Windrush, there are disproportionately few Jewish prisoners, Jews don’t get stopped and searched by the Police nor do they suffer Police violence, nor are they economically, socially or politically discriminated against. There are very few racist attacks on Jews. Being Jewish is a plus not a minus in society. Jews make up 0.5% of the population but probably 3-4% of parliament.

William Rubinstein, a past President of the Jewish Historical Society in Britain, wrote in his book ‘The Right, Left and the Jews’ about “the rise of Western Jewry to unparalleled affluence and high status.” That rise 

has led to the near-disappearance of a Jewish proletariat of any size; indeed, the Jews may become the first ethnic group in history without a working class of any size.”

No one has ever died from a ‘trope’ or a tweet. Yes people have difficulty explaining why Israel appears to have so much support and power.  It is unfortunate that most people aren’t Marxists and able to see that Israel is the West’s watchdog guarding over Western interests. Unfortunately the Zionist lobby, which consciously terms itself a Jewish lobby, gives the impression that Jews have more power than they have.

And why if anti-Semitism is such a problem were the New Labour retreads who signed the Lords letter, such as Lord John Reid and Lady Beverly Hughes, the very people who demonised Muslims and asylum seekers in the days of New Labour? Why is one form of racism unacceptable whilst other forms are taken to the heart?

Social democratic parties have never been known for being intellectual powerhouses. Parties that manage capitalism depend on making pragmatism appear as some kind of virtue but what is particularly depressing is that in its vapid attack on ‘anti-Semitism’ not once does Corbyn’s pathetic drivel attempt to explain how ‘anti-Semitism’ in Labour impacts on Jews materially or physically.  Where is the analysis of racism in British society?

Tom Watson, the ‘anti-racist’ defended this leaflet and this candidate Phi Woolas

In response to the attack from Labour peers last week, Tom Watson’s weeks of subversion and the execrable Panorama programme last week Corbyn had two choices.  He could come out fighting, pointing out that those who were attacking him had deplorable records of demonising refugees, Black people, Gypsies etc. or he could cave in. Corbyn chose the latter and effectively surrendered to his enemies.

PATTY HEARST – A victim of the Stockholm Syndrome

It is the political version of the Stockholm Syndrome.

Corbyn’s strategy, if you can call it that, is to run so fast from his detractors that they won’t catch up. It is to make himself the willing prisoner of those whose sole purpose in life is to remove him.  Thus he informs the Shadow Cabinet that ‘those who deny the existence of antisemitism in the party are “part of the problem”.

A typically fatuous and stupid declaration. If you deny being a witch that is proof that you are. In that other example of mass hysteria, the Salem witch trials, the historian Elizabeth Reis wrote about the dilemmas that faced the women in these trials:

“During examinations, accused women were damned if they did and damned if they did not. If they confessed to witchcraft charges, their admissions would prove the cases against them; if they denied the charges, their very intractability, construed as the refusal to admit to sin more generally, might mark them as sinners and hence allies of the devil.”

The problem is that there is no problem other than that of false accusations. Let us take the accusations at face value. Let us suppose, for the sake of argument that ‘a small number of Labour members hold antisemitic views and a much larger number don’t recognise antisemitic stereotypes and conspiracy theories.’ So what? What does it matter? People have all sorts of ideas in their heads. Is there any evidence that they give effect to them?

I suspect people harbour far greater prejudices about Muslims as terrorists and Gypsies as a social pest.  This incidentally gives rise to far greater   problems than a belief that the Rothschilds control Britain’s money supply.

At a time when according to a poll by Hope not Hate 54% of the Tory rank-and-file believe that Islam is “generally a threat to the British way of life”and some 60% think that”Islam is generally a threat to Western civilisation”, whilst 54% of members of the Tory party are shown to have anti-Islamic views, the Labour Party concentrates on a handful of people who may have indulged in conspiracy theories about how Israel has so much power.

Incidentally the belief that Israel controlled ISIS has nothing to do with anti-Semitism. Apart from the fact that Israel and Jews are not one and the same there is no doubt that Israel had strong relationships with both Al Qaeda in Syria and ISIS including military relations.

Zionism, anti-Zionism and anti-Semitism

That this is not about anti-Semitism but Israel is demonstrated by the section headed ‘Zionism, Anti-Zionism and Anti-Semitism’.

We are told correctly that Zionism was a response to 19thcentury anti-Semitism.  What we are not told was that it was the most reactionary and backward Jews who became Zionists. The racial nationalists like Theodor Herzl and Max Nordau. In the words of Herzl,

“The anti-semites will become our most dependable friends, the anti-semitic countries our allies.”’
(Diaries p.84)

Fatuously we are told that ‘Zionism means maintaining that (Israeli) state.’  No it doesn’t.  You don’t need an ideology to maintain a state.  Most countries don’t have ideologies. Zionism is the ideology of racial nationalism, Jewish supremacy and apartheid. To gloss over that is unforgivable. Zionism dictates that 93% of land in Israel belongs to Jews only. Zionism dictates the demolition of 100 homes today and making 1,000 Palestinians homeless. Zionism dictates that you steal the land of Palestinian peasants and hand it to Jewish settlers. Zionism dictates that in a ‘Jewish’ state you don’t have Arab parties in government or equality on the street.

Quite unforgivably the statement makes no mention of the Palestinian Nakba, the expulsion of ¾ million Palestinians in 1948 and the massacre of thousands of them.  That is how Israel became a Jewish state. Massacres and expulsions, the record of which, Israel is now trying to hide by reclassifying its archives.

The statement says that ‘Most British Jews feel connected to some extent to Israel and many have friends and family there.’  So what?  This is fucking racism.  This was the argument for White South Africa, that many British people had relations in Rhodesia and South Africa.  It is the argument of kith and kin and its a disgrace that Corbyn has put his name to this racist bilge.

The statement says that ‘Jewish people have the same right to self-determination as any other people.’ Another stupid statement. Do Christian or Muslim people have the right to self-determination?  Self-determination belongs to nations not religions.  If the Jews are a nation then they are aliens in Britain, which was historically the argument of the anti-Semites.

As Lucien Wolf, the Secretary of the Conjoint Foreign Committee of the Board of Deputies, wrote:

I have spent most of my life in combating these very doctrines, when presented to me in the form of anti-Semitism, and I can only regard them as the more dangerous when they come to me in the guise of Zionism. They constitute a capitulation to our enemies.’

So Corbyn in his idiocy has put his pen to a passage which is anti-Semitic!  This is Labour’s programme on anti-Semitism!  

The statement however gets worse. ‘There are many forms of Zionism both in Israel and around the world and for many Jews, Zionism represents national liberation.’ No doubt Apartheid represented White  liberation for many South Africans but that did not make it so. There  actually aren’t many forms of Zionism today, unless you mean far-Right and further-Right. Left Zionism has all but disappeared. Zionists all agree on the necessity of a Jewish state where Palestinians  exist on sufferance.  All else is tactical.

Zionism always used to be seen as a form of colonisation before colonialism got a bad name. In his Diaries Herzl wrote a letter to Cecil Rhodes, the founder of Rhodesia and an archetypal British racist in which he said:

How then do I happen to turn to you since this is an out of the way matter for you? How indeed? Because it is something colonial.’

This can be found on page 1194 of Herzl’s diaries. Herzl for those who don’t know was the founder of political Zionism.

I realise that those who wrote this pitiful document know nothing of the history of Zionism, other than what they have been spoon fed by the Jewish Labour Movement. However that is no excuse for someone who spent 30 years in the Palestine solidarity movement.

The statement temporises and says that ‘Labour supports Palestinian statehood and a two-state solution to the conflict.’ Again this is as pitiful as it is wrong. Two states has gone (arguably it never arrived).  No one supports it. No section of Zionist opinion in Israel. It is simply a formula for allowing the continuation of the building of more settlements and more apartheid. 

The final paragraph tells us that ‘opposition to the Israeli government must never use antisemitic ideas’.  No one disagrees with this but the Palestine solidarity movement in Britain never has used anti-Semitic ideas. This argument is one of the biggest lies of the Zionist movement. 

On the contrary it is anti-Semites – from Tommy Robinson to Viktor Orban, from Donald Trump to Richard Spencer, from Steve Bannon to Michal Kaminski, who support Israel whilst harbouring anti-Semitic ideas.  When Richard Spencer, the neo-Nazi founder of the alt-Right says he is aWhite Zionist I believe him.  After all, if you are a racial supremacist what is there not to like in Israel?

Support for Zionism and Anti-Semitism is and always has been compatible because in the words of Zionist novelist, A B Yehoshua, ‘even today, in a perverse way, a real anti-Semite must be a Zionist.’ That was as true of Arthur J Balfour as it was of Mussolini.

Comparing Israel to the Nazis

 Comparing Israel or what happens in it to the Nazis is going to be the subject of a much longer article by me.  Suffice to say it is’t anti-Semitic.  When Zeev Sternhell, a child survivor of a Nazi ghetto in Poland and a world renowned expert on fascism and former professor at Jerusalem’s Hebrew University compares pre-1939 Germany to Israel today, then I prefer to take his word for it rather than an idiot who does not recognise who his political enemies and friends are. 

When Jews march to the chant of ‘death to the Arabs’ they are behaving no differently to Nazis or anti-Semites.

When Rabbis Kashtiel and Redler at the Eli pre-military Yeshivah told their students that ‘Hitler was right’ perhaps they too saw some similarities.

Zionism and Anti-Semitism 

Labour’s pathetic tract on Zionism and anti-Semitism ends by telling us that ‘anti-Zionism is not in itself anti-Semitic’which is a curious way of putting it. Anti-Zionism is a form of anti-racism. When it tells us that ‘Neither Zionism nor anti-Zionism is in itself racism.’ It gets it half wrong or half right. Zionism is intrinsically racist because it is based on the expulsion and dispossession of another people.

The anti-Semitism smear campaign, which clearly began with the British, Israeli and American states, has and will only ever have one goal. The removal of the hapless Corbyn. We support Corbyn despite his many idiocies. As the ruling class becomes more desperate that he should not be allowed to get anywhere near No. 10 Downing Street, this patched up nonsense is not going to carry any weight.

Just today at the Parliamentary Labour Party Yvette Cooperasked ‘Why are so many anti-Semites drawn to support you?’. Of course the simple answer is that it is a lie.  But once you concede the argument like Corbyn over Labour ‘anti-Semitism’ you get drawn in further and further into this right-wing swamp. 

Tony Greenstein

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Tony Greenstein

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