The five candidates who have made it to the second round of the contest to replace Jeremy Corbyn as Labour Party leader have all signed the Board of Deputies of British Jews (BoD) “10 Pledges to end the anti-Semitism crisis.”
The most enthusiastic signatory to a document which means a stepped up witch-hunt of anti-Zionist party members, putting right-wing scoundrels Sir Keir Starmer, Emily Thornberry, Lisa Nandy and Jess Phillips to shame, is Rebecca Long-Bailey, the supposed “continuity” candidate favoured by the Corbyn “left.”
In an unprecedented intervention by an unelected and unrepresentative body in the leadership election of a political party, the pro-Zionist BoD declared, “We believe Labour needs to sign up to [the pledges] in order to begin healing its relationship with the Jewish community.”
It demanded, “We would expect candidates for Labour Leader or Deputy Leader to publicly & unequivocally endorse these in full.”
The BoD’s move was backed by right-wing newspapers including a backer of the pro-Netanyahu government in Israel, the Jewish Chronicle.
Every single pledge reeks of authoritarianism in pursuit of a filthy witch-hunt.
Point 1 demands, “All outstanding and future cases [regarding anti-Semitism] should be brought to a swift conclusion under a fixed timescale.”
Point 2 demands, “Make the Party’s disciplinary process independent: An independent provider should be used to process all complaints, to eradicate any risk of partisanship and factionalism.”
Point 3 insists that Labour should turn over confidential information about its members to “Key affected parties to complaints, including Jewish representative bodies, [i.e the BoD and other Zionist groups who] should be given the right to regular, detailed case updates, on the understanding of confidentiality.”
The BoD then makes the demand that those already thrown out of the party based on trumped-up accusations of anti-Semitism should never be allowed back in. Point 4 declares “prominent offenders who have left or been expelled from the party, such as Ken Livingstone or Jackie Walker, will never be readmitted to membership.”
Point 5 has the most sinister implications, stating that “Any MPs, Peers, councillors, members or CLPs who support, campaign or provide a platform for people who have been suspended or expelled in the wake of antisemitic incidents should themselves be suspended from membership.”
This lays the ground for further “investigations” into the backgrounds and social media accounts of Labour members—from rank and file members to MPs—to find any evidence of them supporting or sympathising with those already fraudulently deemed “anti-Semites.” Constituency branches and other organisations who have organised protest meetings could face derecognition.
This is a path to mass expulsions and blacklisting. There are thousands of rank and file members who are revolted by years of witch-hunting by the right, who have expressed support for those forced out, including Marc Wadsworth, Jackie Walker, former MP and London Mayor Ken Livingstone (50 years membership) and MP Chris Williamson (44 years membership).
Point 6 is also aimed at escalating the witch-hunt and defining the terms on which Labour members are to be railroaded in the future, demanding: “Adopt the international definition of antisemitism without qualification: The IHRA definition of antisemitism, with all its examples and clauses, and without any caveats, will be fully adopted by the party and used as the basis for considering antisemitism disciplinary cases.”
The IHRA ’s definition of anti-Semitism is a mechanism for censoring, silencing and even criminalising individuals and organisations that oppose Israel’s brutal subjugation of the Palestinians, while slandering the entire left as “anti-Semitic.”
Point 9 demands that individual members are publicly named and shamed. “Bland, generic statements should give way to condemnation of specific harmful behaviours—and, where appropriate, condemnation of specific individuals.”
Long-Bailey responded by penning an article in the Jewish News, “I will sign up to all of Board’s asks in antisemitism fight,” that appeared online just five hours after the BoD tweeted its pledges. She promised to “enact all of the Board of Deputies’ recommendations…” and backed the “Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) [who] are investigating our processes. We now have a duty to respond to any recommendations they make by enacting them swiftly and in full.”
The EHRC investigation is being conducted at the behest of the Labour right and Zionist groups.
Long-Bailey called for an immediate upscaling of the witch-hunt, writing, “That is why the party is right to be excluding any prominent members who tour the country and the TV studios denying and diminishing the problem of antisemitism.”
But even this is not enough, with Long-Bailey declaring, “My advice to Labour Party members is that it is never OK to respond to allegations of racism by being defensive. The only acceptable response to any accusation of racist prejudice is self-scrutiny, self-criticism and self-improvement.”
Such a statement, insisting that the only acceptable response to unproven accusations is to abase yourself before your accusers, could have been issued by prosecutor Andrey Vyshinsky, during the Stalinist frame-ups and murder of revolutionists during the 1936-38 Moscow Trials.
Her rush to embrace the witch-hunters also requires that she denounces her mentor Corbyn, with claims that she was a lone voice in the wilderness on Labour’s leading bodies over the last four years—raising concerns that members accused of anti-Semitism were not being thrown out fast enough, etc.
Speaking on Sky News ’ Ridge on Sunday, Long Bailey claimed, “I wasn’t happy with the way our process was being run, I’ll be honest, I don’t think we were dealing with complaints quickly enough and I think that’s quite clear, I’ve been quite vocal about that.”
Asked if Corbyn bore personal responsibility, she said: “He does and he’s apologised. I think any Labour politician that leads the Labour Party should apologise again for what has happened because it has been unacceptable.”
Long-Bailey’s endorsement of the BoD’s pledges is her own pledge to the Blairites that she would be even more subservient to their dictates than was Corbyn, a man whose name is synonymous with political cowardice and capitulation. It is unlikely to convince those she is seeking to woo. The Jewish Chronicle reported “Senior Labour figures” who “have challenged leadership candidate Rebecca Long-Bailey’s claim to have lobbied Jeremy Corbyn behind the scenes to act over antisemitism.”
Alun Davies, a former Welsh government minister and member of Labour’s National Executive Committee said of her claim to have been “quite vocal” on the issue with “various members” of the party’s leadership, tweeted, “I don’t remember you saying anything on this at NEC meetings or supporting those of us who raised these issues…”
“The JC also spoke to a second source familiar with NEC meetings that Ms Long-Bailey attended, who had ‘no recollection’ of her ‘challenging anyone in the leadership over antisemitism’.”
Details of how the anti-Semitism witch-hunt was organised by the Blairites, in league with the Tory Party and intelligence agencies of the UK, US and Israel, continue to emerge.
The Campaign Against Antisemitism (CAA) had its submission accepted by the EHRC in furtherance of the witch-hunt. On December 25, Joe Glasman, the head of its “political investigations” unit, posted a video online in which he commented, “The beast is slain.” Corbyn had been “slaughtered” in the election. “We defeated him,” he gloated. Glasman comments that the CAA was able to achieve its aims via a coordinated campaign that included utilising “our spies and intel.”
Hundreds of Labour members and supporters responded angrily to the BoD’s 10 pledges. One stated, “We should all fight against antisemitism until it finally disappears from our society, but let’s be blunt your actions are party political, you are Tories. Your support for Boris Johnson despite his history [of making racist statements] clearly shows this.”
Many others declared they could not remain in a party that accepted the BoD’s terms. Among their comments were:
- “I don’t think I can carry on being a Labour member. If we are kow towing to the right wing BoD then it’s game over”
- “Find this abhorrent. Will be cancelling my membership this week”
- “Anyone left [in the leadership contest] who isn’t backing this crap? Won’t be possible to vote at this rate. Will probably have to leave the party, “
- “Socialists will have to leave Labour if it complies with BOD.”
Such hostility from rank and file members—many among the hundreds of thousands who joined Labour due to Corbyn’s promise to represent a break with the Blairites—is a devastating indictment of their supposed leader’s record of political capitulation. It is he who bears political responsibility for the renewed witch-hunt now on the agenda—whether conducted by the Blairites he protected from expulsion or by equally wretched individuals such as Long-Bailey.
A day after posting the 10 points, the BoD tweeted that pro-Corbyn deputy leadership candidates Richard Burgon and Dawn Butler were “absent from the list of those who have signed the #TenPledges to tackle antisemitism in Labour.”
Just prior to the BoD issuing its pledges, Blairite leadership candidate Jess Phillips suspended her own constituency office manager, Salma Hamid, after the pro-Tory Daily Mail showed her tweets posted by Hamid between 2014 and 2016 that included “We must show the world that ‘Israel’ is the murderer!” and “Israel IS inflicting Holocaust conditions on Palestinians! Oppressive, racist and violent!”
Another tweet stated that Israel and Judaism were “two totally different things—one is an apartheid nation and the other is a faith based on peace and love.”
These tweets were denounced by Phillips as “completely unacceptable.”