Tony Greenstein | 01 August 2019 | Post Views:

Why is the Jewish Labour Movement, which refuses to support the election of a Labour government, affiliated to the Labour Party?

The Jewish Chronicle is Worried that Labour MPs might start Attacking the Tories rather than the Left – IJAN’s 10 Questions to the JLM Provokes Apoplexy

You would have thought that comrades in Camden Labour parties, including members of the International Jewish Anti-Zionist Organisation, had organised a picnic outside their local synagogue with ham sandwiches on the menu (as Jewish anarchists used to do!) when they posed 10 simple questions to the Zionist ‘Jewish’ Labour Movement.

Suffice to say the Jewish Chronicle was not amused. Their article condemning Jewish Voice for Labour as a ‘far-left fringe group whose members have repeatedly denied or downplayed antisemitism within the Labour party’ spluttered with indignation.

What worried the Jewish the most was that with the advent of a new Tory Prime Minister Boris Johnson and the prospect of an early General Election some Labour MPs were forgetting the interests of Israel and Zionism and concentrating on defeating the Tories. To the Zionists, including the JLM, that is unforgiveable!

The Jewish Labour Movement at its poorly attended conference on 7th April (under 200) passed a resolution stating that the Labour Party was ‘institutionally anti-Semitic’ and that Jeremy Corbyn is‘unfit to be prime minister and a Labour government led by him would not be in the interest of British Jews.’The JLM made it clear that they would‘withhold endorsement, support or campaign time from any candidate who is not an ally in the fight against antisemitism in the Labour Party.’In other words the JLM refuse to support the election of a Labour government under its current leadership. Which begs the question why are they are affiliated to the Labour Party or more pertinently why haven’t the JLM been disaffiliated

The Israeli Labor Party Supports Netanyahu’s attempts to deport Israel’s Black African refugees

By their own admission the JLM is the ‘sister party’ of the almost extinct Israeli Labour Party which in 1948 and onwards ethnically cleansed the Palestinian population of Israel. The ILP for the first 30 years in Israel was the party of government. Today it is barely managing to get into the Knesset. Yet even now this racist party supports the expulsion of all non-Jewish Black African refugees from Israel.The JLM put this into practice at the Peterborough by-election when they refused to support the successful Labour candidate Lisa Forbes. The Jewish Chronicle defended this because

Lisa Forbes, had been found to have endorsed a social media post claiming that Theresa May had a “Zionist slave master’s agenda” and approved another message stating that Isis had been created by the CIA and Mossad.’

In the eyes of the JLM’s Chair Mike Katz, the opposition of anti-Zionist Jews is proof of ‘antisemitism’ in the Labour Party

What you might ask has this to do with anti-Semitism? Theresa May has faithfully supported all Israel’s war crimes. I’m not sure I’d describe it as a ‘Zionist slave master’s agenda’ but it’s not anti-Semitic. Likewise saying ISIS was created by the CIA and Mossad is not anti-Semitic either. The United States did help create ISIS and Israel has certainly had secret and friendly relations with ISIS. But even if this is wrong why is it anti-Semitic? Is Israel equal to Jews? If so that is anti-Semitic

Rebecca Shiraz found the questions ‘highly offensive’ in other words difficult to answer!

The Jewish Chronicle also took exception to asking the JLM to defend its affiliation to the Zionist Federation and the Board of Deputies of British Jews, which supported Israel’s murder of unarmed protesters in Gaza. The JLM made no statement in opposition to the Board’s support for mass murder unlike hundreds of British Jews.

I can’t imagine why there should be a problem in asking any organisation which opposes basic human rights what they are doing in the Labour Party. Clearly Zionists think they should be exempt from the normal rules.

Suffice to say the Jewish Chronicle quoted Jon Lansman, ‘head of the far-left Momentum group’ as having attacked Jewish Voices for Labour: Lansman stated that

“neither the vast majority of individual members of JVL nor the organisation itself can really be said to be part of the Jewish community…. JVL behaves as if it speaks for Jewish socialists. It does not. And too many of its members self-define as ‘Jews’ only to attack other Jews.”

The fact that Lansman attacks the only Jewish group in the Labour Party opposed to Zionism should be reason enough for socialists to keep clear enough.

The Jewish Chronicle quotes a number of Labour nonentities such as Georgia Gould, Leader of Camden Labour Group who declared herself to be a ‘proud member of Jewish Labour.’ Presumably if there had been a Labour Friends of Apartheid group 30 years ago she would have been a proud member of that too.

It is understandable that the present day Labour Friends of Israeli Apartheid should whine and protest at the questions that IJAN has asked but they won’t go away.

Socialists inside the Labour Party should ask why it is that the JLM, which is essentially an arm of the Israeli state inside the British Labour Party, continues to have all the privileges of an affiliated socialist society when they don’t even support the Labour Party?

The Israeli Labour Party under its previous far-Right leader Avi Gabbay officially cut relations with the Labour Party. We should do likewise and send these gutter racists off with a clip on their proverbial ear. A party of segregation and ethnic cleansing has no place being part of the Labour Party because in essence the JLM is not a ‘sister party’ but the British wing of the Israeli Labour Party.

The fact that the JLM are also affiliated to the settlement funding World Zionist Organisation is another reason enough to disaffiliate these racists.

The initial signatories of the letter include Dr Swee Ang, an orthopaedic surgeon who has worked in Gaza repairing the damage to people caused by Israeli missiles and bombs, 3 Israeli Jewish professors – Haim Bresheeth, Moshe Machover and Avi Shlaim. It includes legendary Jewish folk singer Leon Rosselson and Jewish comedian Alexei Sayle as well as Electronic Intifada journalist Asa Winstanley and Ian MacDonald QC and Palestinian activist and doctor Ghada Karmi.

According to the Zionists however the 5 out of 9 Jewish signatories are the ‘wrong sort of Jews’ because they insist on standing up against Zionist apartheid and calling out the fake anti-Semitism campaign for what it is.

See below the excellent questions that comrades in Camden Labour parties drew up for the Jewish Labour Movement. I suspect they will move heaven and earth, including plentiful cries of ‘antisemitism’ before they answer!!
Tony Greenstein


Initial signatories
Dr. Swee Ang
Dr. Haim Bresheeth
Dr. Ghada Karmi
Emeritus professorMoshe Machover
Ian Macdonald QC
Leon Rosselson
Alexei Sayle
Avi Shlaim, FBA
Asa Winstanley

To JLM,Your AGM on 7 April 2019 passed resolutions denouncing the leadership of the Labour Party and the Labour Party itself. This is extraordinary coming from an organisation affiliated to the Labour Party. We therefore have some questions to ask the JLM and your supporters.

The JLM passed resolutions that said:

the Labour Party is institutionally antisemitic; 
the leadership of the Labour Party have demonstrated that they are antisemitic; 
and Jeremy Corbyn is therefore unfit to be prime minister and a Labour government led by him would not be in the interest of British Jews. 
…[we] withhold endorsement, support or campaign time from any candidate who is not an ally in the fight against antisemitism in the Labour Party…
QIn the Peterborough by-election in May, you decided not to campaign for Labour parliamentary candidate Lisa Forbes, and after she won you called for her to have the whip suspended immediately. Does that mean that you were so opposed to her election that you did not care who was elected instead? Undermining the Labour candidate enhanced the chances of the Brexit party, led by an extreme right-winger who has connections with the antisemitic racist right in Europe.  Would you have preferred the Brexit candidate to be elected?
QAre you in favour of the Labour Party manifesto which Corbyn’s leadership has produced, against austerity, for re-nationalisation and an ethical foreign policy? 
QWhen there is a general election, what other party would the JLM encourage Jewish people to vote for, or would you propose that Jewish people abstain from voting? Would you tell people not to vote Labour, allowing the possibility of a racist, anti-immigrant, homophobic, pro-austerity, extremist right wing Tory prime minister?

There is an increasing threat of war against Iran by the US, backed by Israel and Saudi Arabia. A Corbyn government would ensure that Britain uses its power to deflate such a horrendous possibility and would not back such a war.

QWould you support the Corbyn-led anti-war Party or support this highly dangerous promotion of war?

The Al Jazeera documentary, The Lobby, revealed that the JLM was working with Israeli agent Shai Masot based at the Israeli embassy, who was plotting to “take down” Foreign Office minister Alan Duncan and discredit the then chair of the Foreign Affairs Select Committee Crispin Blunt for disagreeing with Israel’s policies towards Palestinians.

The then chair of the JLM, Jeremy Newmark, was filmed at the 2016 Labour Party conference in a meeting with Masot and Israel’s ambassador to the UK Mark Regev discussing how to undermine Party members’ support for Palestine.

When confronted, Ella Rose, then director of JLM, now Equalities Officer, defended the JLM’s relationship with Masot saying she knew him “very well” and that she had worked with him when she was a public affairs officer at the Israeli embassy.  She admitted that the JLM brought an Israeli delegation to the conference on behalf of the embassy.

QIn the light of this we have to ask what is the relationship between leading members of the JLM and the Israeli embassy in London?

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn and shadow Foreign Secretary Emily Thornberry called for an investigation into the apparent Israeli interference exposed by Al Jazeera.

QDoes the JLM support such an investigation?

The JLM website states:

In addition to the UK Labour Party, the Jewish Labour Movement is also affiliated to the Board of Deputies of British Jews, the Zionist Federation of the UK, and organise within the World Zionist Organisation alongside our sister party in Israel, Havodah – the Israeli Labor Party . . .

According to the UN, the World Zionist Organisation wasallocated $35 millionby Israel to fund and organise Israeli settlements on Occupied Palestinian landin violation of international law. The Zionist Federation of the UKdemonstratedin support of the 2014 bombing of Gaza where over 2,000 Palestinian civilians were killed, including 500 children. The Board of Deputies of British Jewsattempted to justify the widely condemned intentional killing of unarmed Palestinians by the Israeli military during the Great March of Return.  So far this has resulted in 277 killed, including 52 children, media, medical personnel and disabled people, and 28,000 wounded and deliberately disabled.

QWe see no references to these tragedies on your website: how do you explain being affiliated to these organisations which defend illegal incursions into Palestinian land and life, and the organised murder and maiming of unarmed civilians?

Isaac Herzog, while leader of the JLM’s ‘sister party’ the Israeli Labor Party (ILP) stated his apartheid view to: “separate from as many Palestinians as possible, as quickly as possible . . . We want to . . . complete the barrier that separates us.” Last year he stated that intermarriage between Jews and non-Jews is a “plague”. Current ILP leader Gabbay has said: “the Arabs have to be afraid of us” and “We will not share a government with the [Arab majority party] Joint List, period.”, and joined the racists in trying to legislate for 35,000 African asylum seekers to be either deported or indefinitely incarcerated.

QHave you challenged these views?

Your no-confidence resolution in Jeremy Corbyn also says:

Solidarity for those less fortunate than us or who suffered discrimination or injustice are both Jewish and Labour values.

QYet the JLM seems to focus only on antisemitism in the Labour Party and has little to say about antisemitism by other political parties, even by the far right.  Other forms of racism, including Islamophobia, and discrimination and injustice, such as the hostile immigration environment are rarely mentioned. Can you say why this is so?

Your AGM also attacked other Labour organisations, including a Jewish organisation:

CLPD [Campaign for Labour Party Democracy], LRC [Labour Representation Committee] and JVL [Jewish Voice for Labour] are a malign influence in the Labour Party.One of your ‘values’is: To promote the centrality of Israel in Jewish life . . .

QYou often refer to ‘the Jewish community’ as if Jewish people are of one mind and whose political views you represent; at the same time you attack a Jewish organisation.   How can you justify this? Since you consider the Labour Party under Jeremy Corbyn institutionally antisemitic and therefore claim he is ‘unfit’ to govern, are we right to assume that you stay in the Labour Party to prevent it becoming the government?

2 July 2019

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Tony Greenstein

1 Comment

  1. AnneTan42 on 01/08/2019 at 12:53pm

    Well JLM has at least some Conservative members! So “Jewish Labour Movement” is a bit of a misnomer!!

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