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The Corbyn Threat to Britain and Beyond

The Corbyn Threat to Britain and Beyond

William Shawcross

It seems unbelievable that anti-Semitism should be raising its hideous head in Europe, after 70 years of promising “Never Again.” But there are ugly signs of it stirring from the filth. In April, an elderly Holocaust survivor was murdered in Paris; some 20,000 French Jews have fled to Israel in the past decade. One of the reasons many of them give for this is the growth of the Muslim community in France.

In Germany, Jewish school children are suddenly being abused much more often by their classmates – the police registered 1,452 anti-Semitic incidents in Germany last year, more than in five of the previous seven years. And it is believed that less than half of such incidents are reported. “I fear that a new generation of anti-Semites is coming of age,” said Josef Schuster, president of the Central Council of Jews in Germany.

Levi Salomon, the head of the Jewish Forum for Democracy Against Anti-Semitism in Berlin, told the Wall Street Journal that most violent incidents against Jews in Germany are now committed by Muslims. One must, of course, be very careful not to make generalizations about communities (especially in an article on racism against Jews), but as Salomon said, “To say there is no specific problem is even worse. We need to devise urgent strategies to deal with this.”

Heinz-Peter Meidinger, head of Germany’s teachers association, said there was a tendency amongst Arabic- and Turkish-speaking communities in Germany to view Jews in the context of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. That, unfortunately, is true throughout Europe.

Opposition to Israel’s policies gives many people a new excuse to indulge in traditional anti-Semitism. When you hear the protestation, “I am not an anti-Semite, but I am an anti-Zionist,” beware.

Anti-Semitism in Britain

For the extremes of anti-Israel bias within the European political classes, you need to look no further (alas) than Jeremy Corbyn, the leader of Britain’s Labour Party.

His views are closer to those of Stalin than to Clement Attlee, the first postwar Labour prime minister. In the three decades and more that Corbyn has been a back-bench Labour MP, constantly betraying his own party (and common decency), it was easy enough to ignore him. No longer.

This hard Left admirer of the Soviet Union, Venezuela, self-proclaimed “friend” of Hamas and Hizbullah, and enemy of Israel was elected, almost by mistake, as leader by Labour Members of Parliament in 2015. Now he could be elected prime minister of Britain. This would be a catastrophe beyond imagination.

Corbyn always presents himself (and is presented by his allies in the media and politics) as “a man of peace.”

For Corbyn, “peace” appears to mean appeasing all the most extreme enemies of the West, and of Israel in particular. That has been the pattern of his entire public life.

The self-proclaimed man of “peace-promoting dialogue” usually meets with only half of the parties to any conflict – nearly always those who hate the West as well, of course, as loathing Israel. He never bothers to speak to the other side of the dialogue – those who suffer from terrorism and try to resist, if not defeat, the terrorists.

He has never met with a single Israeli official, and he made a show of refusing to meet Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during his recent visit to London.

In 2011, Corbyn said feigningly on Press TV, Iran’s English language propaganda channel, “I think there is a bias towards saying that Israel is a democracy in the Middle East, Israel has a right to exist; Israel has its security concerns.”

Indeed, say I, but Corbyn was clearly insinuating that he believed all those clear truths were mere propaganda.

Throughout his career as a “peacemaker,” Corbyn has been a self-declared friend, not only to Hamas and Hizbullah and, it seems, Palestinian Black September, but also to the IRA (Irish Republican Army). He invited IRA leaders to tea in Parliament shortly after they had tried to murder Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher in 1984 (and succeeded in killing five people and maiming another 31), and he has spent much of his time ever since cozying up to them.

Most recently, photographs surfaced showing him at a 2014 wreath-laying ceremony at the Tunis grave of members of the Black September terrorist gang who tortured and murdered Israeli athletes at the Munich Olympics in 1972.

Such pilgrimages (paid for in this case by the Tunisian government) were constant occurrences in his life as an extreme Left-wing backbencher and passed almost unnoticed in Parliament and the press until he was, astonishingly and horrifyingly, elected Leader of the Party in 2015.

The front page of the Daily Mail (UK)
The front page of the Daily Mail (UK)

At first, he denied he had been in Tunis; then his office had the effrontery to declare that “the Munich widows are being misled!”

Then he concocted the sort of defense a child might make after being accused of playing with matches. “I was present at the wreath laying. I don’t think I was actually involved in it.”

This seems to be the story of his life – wandering around from one grim anti-democratic function to another, in a self-induced state of credulity, never exercising any moral judgment at all.

In the same vein, he first defended on free-speech grounds a large anti-Semitic mural on the wall of a London street depicting Jewish tycoons enslaving the world – and then, when challenged, claimed he had not really looked at it.

Mural on a London Street
Mural on a London Street. (Mear One/Twitter)

One writer compared him to Forrest Gump, a bemused spectator at events. But for Corbyn, bemusement is a cover. Forrest, by contrast, had a moral core of decency that led him to search for the truth. No such luck with Corbyn.

Corbyn claims that he was in Tunisia at the “celebration” in 2014 to remember “everyone who died in every terrorist incident everywhere.” These are airy generalizations, but he never remembers the actual victims of Palestinian Black September, like Ami Shachori, for instance, the agricultural attaché at the Israel Embassy in London who was murdered by a Black September parcel bomb in September 1972.

Corbyn claimed he had come to the 2014 conference in Tunis only to remember those Palestinians killed in an Israeli airstrike on the PLO headquarters in the city in 1985, which killed more than 30 people.

Another photo showed him with his palms upward in a gesture often associated with Muslim prayer. He said he was just being polite, not praying.

Corbyn’s hand gestures
Corbyn’s hand gestures, as he participated in Muslim prayer for the Munich terrorists.

And the continual answer from Corbyn himself and his supporters was that “he is a man of peace.” Therefore, he must meet with people of all sorts – even people associated with mass murders of athletes.

Remember that Black September’s monster-terrorists viciously tortured the Israeli athletes before murdering them, and Hamas denies Israel every right to exist, claiming “Palestine is a land that was seized by a racist, anti-human and colonial Zionist project.”

All this is nothing to Corbyn and his allies in the Labour Party. The awful thing is that, despite cries of revulsion from the press, and horror from moderate Labour MPs at the way their party has been hijacked by the left-wing thugs of Momentum who are trying to force out moderates, he may well get away with it. [Momentum is a far-Left movement within Labour of grassroots supporters of Corbyn.] In these days of Fake News, “post-truth” politics, and information (and misinformation), most people are overloaded and too busy to study the details of every political claim, denial, assertion, and promise that politicians make.

But the truth is clear to those who wish to see it. The magnificent novelist and columnist Howard Jacobson recently wrote:

The incantatory repetition of the charge that Jews cry anti-Semitism only in order to subvert criticism of Israel or discredit Corbyn is more than fatuous and lazy, and it is more than painful to those many Jews who own an old allegiance to the Labour Party and who are not strangers to criticizing Israel. It is the deepest imaginable insult…

Corbyn Is Not Just a Jewish Concern

It’s not just Jews who should be worried. Britain’s allies all over the world are alarmed by the approach of Corbyn – particularly in the United States and in the Gulf. Stephen Pollard, editor of the Jewish Chronicle, wrote recently that the Gulf States are deeply concerned, to say the least, about the prospect of a Corbyn government. In the Middle East region, Corbyn admires only the Muslim Brotherhood and the government of Iran.

(In 2014, he praised Iran’s theocratic dictatorship as a beacon of decency, lauding its “tolerance and acceptance of other faiths, traditions, and ethnic groupings in Iran.”)

Saudi Arabia, by contrast, he loathes, and he would undoubtedly end defense co-operation between Britain and the Saudis. Intelligence sharing would cease as well – and Britain could no longer expect to receive the invaluable Saudi information that has assisted Britain in foiling scores of terrorist plots. Prime Minister Theresa May has said that this intelligence may have saved hundreds of lives in the past.

One senior Gulf diplomat told Pollard, “Corbyn in Downing Street would mean having to treat the UK as an enemy.”

Rod Liddle, one of the most frank (and funny) British writers, defined the Corbyn problem well in the Spectator:

The dialogue for peace stuff is a downright absolute lie. He is an anti-Semite who, furthermore, is happy to suck up to whatever foul ideology is opposed to this country’s interests or the interests of western democracy. Cuba, Venezuela, Soviet Russia, Black September, Hamas, Hizbullah, the IRA. You name a crock of purulent, murderous, anti-democratic, racist shit – and he’ll be for it.

More and more is exposed every week to add to the evidence that Liddle and other critics are correct about Corbyn. Shortly before this article went to press, the Daily Mail uncovered a video of Corbyn at a 2013 meeting in which he appeared before various anti-Semitic and anti-Israeli characters, including the Palestinian ambassador whose speech Corbyn praised. The words Corbyn uttered drew wide and loud condemnation.

This was dutifully recorded by the thankfully silent Zionists who were in the audience on that occasion, and then came up and berated him afterward for what he has said. … They clearly have two problems. One is that they don’t want to study history, and secondly, having lived in this country for a very long time, probably all their lives, don’t understand English irony. [Emphasis added.]

Irony has never seemed Corbyn’s own strong suit – he does not seem sharp enough to wield it.

But the statement was revealing: British Jews (“Zionists” to Corbyn) may have lived in the country and been British citizens all their lives, but they are aliens among us.

That is as stark a rendition of Corbyn’s anti-Semitism as one could ever not wish for.

The only good news is that this and all his other racist statements have endeared him to the extreme Right-wing British Nationalist Party and other Right-wing extremists who have Tweeted their appreciation of his views. One hopes that such endorsement will lead to more and more of his colleagues turning away in disgust and demand his departure.

A Rabbinic Retort

In an interview with the New Statesman at the end of August, the Chief Rabbi Emeritus, Rabbi Jonathan Sacks, said, “Corbyn defiles our politics and demeans the country we love,” and that his statements were the most offensive since Enoch Powell’s “Rivers of Blood” speech in 1968.

(That was a sharp arrow. Powell was a senior Conservative politician who intended his hyperbolic speech to awaken Britain to the dangers of mass immigration. Its actual effect was to make mass immigration a subject which no one could criticize for decades without being tagged “a Powellite racist.”)

Shortly after that, one of the most respected Labour MPs, Frank Field, who had been a Labour Party member since 1960 and the Member of Parliament for Birkenhead near Liverpool since 1979, declared that he was resigning the Labour whip in the Commons in protest against Corbyn’s anti-Semitism.

Mr. Field, a man of great courage, who is revered by politicians of all parties, asserted that under Corbyn, Labour is becoming “a force for anti-Semitism in British politics.” He went on to say that Britain “fought the Second World War to banish these views” and yet now, sadly, Labour is “increasingly seen as a racist party.”

Mr. Field warned that Labour was now a party dominated by “a culture of intolerance, nastiness, and intimidation,” which has made life intolerable for all those MPs and party members who do not accept the hard-Left dogma of Corbyn and the thugs in Momentum.

Throughout the country, traditional “moderate” Labour MPs are finding that their local party organizations have been taken over by the hard Left. Momentum-types are demanding that the moderates be “deselected” for their inadequate enthusiasm for the leadership of Jeremy Corbyn.

Unless a large number of moderate Labour MPs follow Frank Field’s brave lead, it will be very hard for future Labour leaders to reverse this takeover. The dangers are clear: for a long time to come, Labour will be dominated by an anti-Semitic, undemocratic clique that wishes to overturn the basic tenets of Parliamentary democracy and end the defense of the values of the Western world.

If Corbyn’s Labour secures national power, that faction’s ambition will be to destroy the Britain that stood alone against the Nazis in 1940. It is that serious.

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How European Attitudes toward Israel Are Affected by Shifting U.S. Attitudes
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Biographies of Participants and Speakers
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