Tony Greenstein | 15 November 2016 | Post Views:

Jewish Labour Movement refuses to condemn leader of its Israeli sister party

Note the Contrast
What a contrast between the reaction of Jeremy Corbyn to the election of Donald Trump and that of Isaac Herzog, the leader of Israel’s Labour Party.  Corbyn wrote that “Many in Britain and elsewhere will be understandably shocked by Donald Trump’s victory in the US presidential election, the rhetoric around it and what the election result means for the rest of the world, as well as America.” and that it was ‘an “unmistakable rejection” of the political establishment and an economic system that has delivered escalating inequality.

Contrast this with the Isaac Herzog, the leader of the Israeli Labour Party:

“Warm congratulations to the
president of the most powerful nation in the world: Donald J Trump!”
 Israeli Labour Party leader Isaac Herzog, wrote on his Facebook.’ Herzog to Trump: Your win shows elites are thing of past

This poses a dilemma for the Jewish Labour Movement, which is the British wing of the ILP.  The JLM only recently brought over ILP members to the Labour Party conference.  The JLM likes to portray itself as the ‘Jewish section’ of the Labour Party, despite its exclusion of non-Zionist/anti-Zionist Jews.  It has even obtained a representative on the Party’s Equalities sub-committee.

Almost 200 Jews, including members of the JLM (but not its Chair Jeremy Newmark) sent a letter criticising the statement by the President of the Board of Deputies, Jonathan Arkush welcoming Trump’s election Board president defends congratulating Trump amid criticism.  Even the JLM’s Director Ella Rose, a recent transfer from the Israeli Embassy, tweeted her criticism of the statement. However the JLM has maintained a stony silence about the welcome for Trump by Herzog.  

Indeed the JLM has said nothing at all about the wall to wall welcome in Israel for Trump’s election. The only Zionist party not to have welcomed Trump’s election is the tiny Meretz Party, which has 5 seats in the Knesset.

It is doubly ironic that Herzog should welcome Trump and his anti-Semitic Breitbart entourage given that it was not so long ago that he wrote to Jeremy Corbyn to say that he was ‘ “appalled and outraged” that the Labour Party tolerated ‘anti-Semitism’ i.e. anti-Zionism in the British Labour Party.  Indeed he threatened to sever links between the ILP and the Labour Party.  Unfortunately he didn’t follow up on his threat!

Herzog himself is no slouch when it comes to racism and bigotry.  Herzog recently declared that his nightmare was waking up to find that Israel had a Palestinian Prime Minister and 61 Palestinian Members of Israel’s Knesset
(Parliament).  Who
needs the Right when we have Isaac Herzog?
Herzog also recently declared that he wanted to dispel the false
impression that the ILP were ‘Arab Lovers’ Herzog
slammed for remark about ‘Arab lovers’

Bigotry runs right through the Israeli political system – every Government Minister is a Donald Trump

Imagine if someone in
Britain had said that their nightmare was waking up to a Jewish Prime Minister
in this country?  Or if people talked of
‘Jew lovers’.  Anti-fascists used to get accused by the neo-Nazi National Front of being ‘nigger lovers’.  Herzog’s rhetoric however goes virtually unnoticed in a country
where Prime Minister Netanyahu talks about Arabs outside Israel being ‘wild
plans fence around Israel to protect it from ‘wild beasts’

Leading by example – Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
When it comes to racism in Israel you are
spoilt for choice.  The Deputy Defence
Minister Eli Dahan talks about Arabs thus: 
 “To me, they are like animals, they aren’t human.”
Eli Ben Dahan, who is evidently an expert when it comes to the racial hierarchy of souls, also told Ma’ariv that homosexual Jews were superior than gentiles — gay or
straight.  “A Jew always has a much
higher soul than a gentile, even if he is a homosexual,
” he said.  New
deputy defense minister called Palestinians ‘animals’
Deputy Defence Minister Eli Dahan is an expert in the racial hierarchy of souls
Herzog gushed that “Today American democracy chose …
an American leader who showed the commentators and the skeptics that we are in
a new era of change and replacing the old elitist regimes!”
he said “You did the unthinkable, against all the odds, polls, research and the
prophets of the old era. I’m convinced that the defense and financial alliance
our strongest and most powerful ally will continue with a vengeance under
your presidency.”
Note the words
financial alliance’.  Even the best anti-Semites
would be hard put to better that.  And
why shouldn’t Herzog flatter Trump. 
After all the Israeli Labour Party was the founding party of racism in Israel.  Their trade union, Histadrut barred Arabs
from membership from 1920-1959 and even then put them into a separate Arab
section, under the leadership of a Jew!
At every
election the Labour Party warns Netanyahu of the consequences of not reaching a
peace settlement based on the bantustanisation of the West Bank.  The Arabs will continue to multiply until the
Jewish state is swamped.  Their policy with regard to the Palestinian Arabs is one of segregation. It is a party which would not have been out of place in the Deep South of America.  That is why they support reaching a ‘peace’ settlement.
this with Jeremy Corbyn’s principled statement that sexism and racism have no
place in politics.  Yet the Jewish Labour
Movement under Jeremy Newmark, which is formally affiliated to the World Labour Zionist Movement, an organisation in name only, and the settlement funding
World Zionist Organisation, is a socialist society affiliated to the Labour
Party and entitled to send delegates to Labour Party conference and
constituency Labour Parties.  It even has a representative on the Labour
Party’s Equalities sub-Committee!  Mind
there is a weird kind of logic in having representatives of racist
organisation on anti-racist committees.  It helps us to get to know them better!

Tony Greenstein

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Tony Greenstein

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