Tony Greenstein | 13 November 2015 | Post Views:

John Mann MP, Zionist
Chair of Parliament’s ‘anti-Semitism’ Sub-Committee Joins the Signatories

Gary Spedding – the Walter Mitty Character who drafts SNP EDMs

Another self-seeking publicist and narcissist –   the Blue Labour MP ‘rent a gob’ John Mann 


Dear Member of

I wrote to most of you
at the weekend in response to the signing of EDM 652 by predominantly SNP MPs
(28/33).  I also enclosed a link to a
blog article entitled ‘Zionism in anAnti-Racist Guise – SNP falls for the oldest Zionist trick in the book – AttackPalestinians, Shout ‘anti-Semitism’ 
Being anti-Semitic is no obstacle to being a supporter of Israel and Zionism
I note that it has now
garnered an extra 9 signatures –  mainly
the more reactionary Labour MPs (John Mann in particular) as well as a stray
from Plaid Cymru and the UUP, who clearly thought her friends in the SDLP needed
the company of Protestant supremacism.
The EDM, although
deceptively worded, clearly has a Zionist pedigree.  My objections, as a longstanding Jewish anti-Zionist,
to the motion  were five fold:
John Mann’s racist friend – former New Labour MP Phil Woollas who ran an openly racist campaign but was deselected by the High Court
It affirmed that ‘anti-Semitism has no place in
campaigns of solidarity with Palestinians’ thereby assuming that it ever has
had such a place.
It cites as a reliable source the statistics of the
Community Security Trust, an overtly right-wing Zionist organisation, which
supplied false information to the Home Office to secure the deportation of Raed
Salah, a Palestinian leader in Israel. 
The Upper Tribunal threw the case out when it was revealed that this
information had been forged.  There is
good reason to believe that the anti-Semitic incidents that the CST records are
similarly suspect.
Robert Zile MEP, Latvian LNNK – another anti-Semitic friend of Israel – likes to march with the veterans of the Latvian Waffen SS every March
It refers to ‘armed violence’ between Israel and
Gaza whereas in reality there was what the noted Israeli author, Ilan Pappe
described as ‘incremental genocide’.  2,200
Palestinians were killed, including 551 children, whereas approximately 70 Israelis
died of whom 90% were soldiers.
Zionist Federation vice-chair Jonathan Hoffman demonstrates alongside Roberta Moore of the neo-Nazi Jewish Defence League
It calls for members ‘to make clear the distinction
between the Jewish community…’ and ends there. 
Presumably this illiterate motion means the Jewish community and the
actions of Israel.  I agree but it is
somewhat unfortunate that the Israeli government repeatedly claims that it acts
on behalf of all Jews, inside and outside Israel and that the Zionist Board of
Deputies of British Jews goes out of its way to associate the British Jewish community
with the actions of Israel.  Is it any
surprise that some people take the claims of Zionists seriously?
John Mann MP did his best to stop Jeremy Corbyn MP being elected and used the racist Daily Express – which in the 30s ran a campaign against admitting Jewish refugees from Nazi Germany – to further his campaign
The issue is not ‘anti-Semitism’ but the virulent
racism of the Israeli state.  The issuing
of a book Torat HeMelech by Rabbi Yitzhak Shapira which advocated killing non-Jewish
children and infants, as they would grow up to hate Jews.  The precise argument Himmler gave to senior
SS officers in October 1943 as a justification for killing Jewish children.  No prosecution of Shapira ever took place and
when he was temporarily detained by Police for one day hundreds of rabbis
protested against this.  The examples of Israeli
racism, such as barring Arabs from Jewish towns, forbidding the right of Israeli
Palestinians to rent ‘Jewish’ homes are numerous.
The Zionist CST sees its job as excluding left-wing Jews from communal meetings
What I didn’t realise
was that the EDM had been drawn up, not by the initial signatories to the
motion but by a Gary Spedding, who claims to be part of the Palestine solidarity
movement but who is widely derided by activists for his self-seeking publicity seeking.   I and
others have been bombarded by him with comments for most of this week. 
Smug, reactionary, not very bright but ‘concerned’ about ‘anti-Semitism’
Mr Spedding informed
me that Your opinion of me matters very little. My
performance is judged on how threatened the Israel advocacy groups feel by the
work I do and I can tell you that they’re terrified. Absolutely terrified.’
Well he certainly terrifies his few remaining
friends and he should terrify you!  He is
an extreme example of narcissism.  A
Walter Mitty character. 
Spedding, has made it clear that, in his
opinion, I ‘choose to remain blind to the
anti-semitism that blights our movement.’
I have asked Spedding repeatedly what exactly this
blight consists of.  His silence has been
deafening.  When there were anti-Semites hanging
around the Palestine solidarity movement, Gilad Atzmon and Paul Eisen in
particular, it was Jewish anti-Zionists who rooted them out.  Gary Spedding was nowhere to be seen.  In his arrogance, Mr Spedding thinks he knows
more about anti-Semitism than Jews who work within the Palestine solidarity
would therefore ask you to remove your signature from this overtly Zionist inspired
EDM.  It constitutes a direct attack on Palestine
solidarity work in this country.  It
serves no purpose whatsoever and it is not surprising that the high priest of
false accusations of anti-Semitism, John Mann MP, has become a signatory.  You should also think very carefully before
signing anything by Gary Spedding again. 
Anti-Semitism is repeatedly used by the Zionist movement and the Israeli
government as a weapon against their detractors.  Today it is the European Union for labelling
goods made in the West Bank.  Yesterday
it was President Obama.  Two weeks ago
the Palestinian people were blamed for forcing the holocaust upon Hitler.
wild use of the term anti-Semitism simply lets the real anti-Semites off the
hook.  Like the boy who cried wolf, it
immunises people to anti-Semitism when it does occur and drains the term of all
I hadn’t realised when I wrote to you that one
activist had even gone so far as to set up a Spedding Solidarity Movement page!
 Please don’t be taken in by this
charlatan again. 
Yours sincerely,
Tony Greenstein
It would be unkind not to make a particular mention of John Mann MP, since he too loves publicity – good or bad.
As Chair of the Parliamentary Sub-Committee on ‘Anti-Semitism’ John Mann MP, despite not being Jewish, considers himself an expert.  The anti-Semitism that concerns him is that which is connected with opposition to Israel – like Boycotts, Sanctions and Disinvestment.
So when the Universities Colleage Union decided to boycott Israeli Universities for their involvement in research for the Israeli military, training its officers and running programmes specifically designed to meet its needs, as well as institutes of security and the like, John Mann MP and the corrupt Dennis MacShane MP swung into action.

When an action for racial discrimination was brought by Anthony Julius of Mishcon de Reya, an ardent Zionist solicitor, against UCU for racial discrimination (the argument being that Zionism is an inherent part of being Jewish and therefore to be anti-Zionist is to be anti-Jewish and therefore racist) John Mann MP was more than willing, with Dennis MacShane, to give evidence.  The  Tribunal case – Fraser v UCU was comprehensively lost and the Tribunal had this to say about the two MPs:

“We did not derive assistance from the two Members of Parliament who appeared before us. Both gave glib evidence, appearing supremely confident of the rightness of their positions. For Dr MacShane, it seemed that all answers lay in the MacPherson Report (the effect of which he appeared to misunderstand). Mr Mann could manage without even that assistance. He told us that the leaders of the Respondents were at fault for the way in which they conducted debates but did not enlighten us as to what they were doing wrong or what they should be doing differently. He did not claim ever to have witnessed any Congress or other UCU meeting. And when it came to anti-Semitism in the context of debate about the Middle East, he 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.”

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