The Office of the Independent Adjudicator for Higher Education (OIA) has condemned Sheffield Hallam University for failing to properly address a Jewish student’s complaint about antisemitism, and has ordered the university to pay him compensation of £3,000.

The student made a formal complaint to the university over its tolerance of anti-Israel activity that crossed the line into antisemitism and harassment, including tweets and Facebook posts by the university’s Palestine Society reportedly comparing Bethlehem to the Warsaw Ghetto and “Zionists” to Nazi criminals, and accusing Israel of harvesting the organs of Palestinian civilians. After deliberating for nearly nine months, the university comprehensively rejected the complaint, but the student took his case to the OIA.

The OIA strongly criticised the university’s handling of the complaint and found that the Palestine Society’s activity did cause him distress and inconvenience. The OIA cited the International Definition of Antisemitism which states that “using the symbols and images associated with classic antisemitism (e.g. claims of Jews killing Jesus or blood libel) to characterise Israel or Israelis” and “drawing comparisons of contemporary Israeli policy to that of the Nazis” is antisemitic.

In a highly-significant move, the OIA reportedly described the definition as being “of particular relevance” and said the university should have engaged with the complainant’s request that it formally adopt the definition. The recognition by the OIA of the International Definition of Antisemitism in accordance with calls by Campaign Against Antisemitism, the House of Commons Home Affairs Committee, and others sets an important precedent.

The university has been ordered to pay compensation of £3,000 to the student, review its policies and work with the students’ union to ensure complaints are dealt with fairly, and raise awareness across campus of the legal framework governing freedom of speech and the university’s responsibility to ensure that staff, students and others are “protected from discrimination, harassment and victimisation.”

We commend the student for making the complaint, and solicitor David Lewis and lecturer Lesley Klaff for assisting him. The precedent set by this decision will help Jewish students who are harassed and victimised by antisemites claiming merely to be critical of Israel. If you know of anybody who has suffered from antisemitic harassment, please contact us.

A passenger on a tram in Manchester has been filmed delivering a tirade of abuse at fellow passengers, during which he told a Jewish man: “Why don’t you f*** of where you come from?”

After boarding the busy tram at Market Street, he was captured on film by another passenger before he disembarked at Abraham Moss in Crumpsall. Greater Manchester Police are treating the incident as a hate crime.

Transport for Greater Manchester’s Metrolink Director, Peter Cushing, told The Mirror: “This type of behaviour has no place on Metrolink or anywhere else. We won’t stand for it and neither will our customers. We will work with Greater Manchester Police and share CCTV footage to help try and identify the individual.”

Last week, Baroness Tonge finally stepped down after the Liberal Democrats suspended her over yet another antisemitism crisis of her own making. This time, she had hosted an event at the House of Lords organised by the Palestine Return Centre (PRC) at which Jews were blamed for the Holocaust. The PRC were the very same hosts of a Parliamentary event last year at which Sir Gerald Kaufmann MP claimed that “Jewish money” controlled British politicians.

It has now emerged that in 2009, Jeremy Corbyn accepted a trip to Syria at the PRC’s expense, along with Baroness Tonge, to greet and praise the Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad. In writing an account of the trip, he repeated a worn antisemitic conspiracy myth, in declaring that “the Israeli tail wags the US dog”, as well as characterising the Balfour declaration as “infamous”.

Mr Corbyn repeatedly claims that he “condemns antisemitism” yet he fails to act against it, and even normalises it. That was the finding of the House of Commons Home Affairs Committee’s report into antisemitism, which criticises Mr Corbyn directly and makes clear that under his leadership the Labour Party has not done enough to stem a flood of antisemitism amongst its supporters. The report demonstrates that at the very heart of Mr Corbyn’s politics lies a deep and profound denial of the nature of post-Holocaust antisemitism, reflected in his disavowal of the International Definition of Antisemitism, a definition that the Committee itself recommended be formally endorsed by the Government and all political parties.

The International Definition of Antisemitism incorporates a necessary understanding of the antisemitism of the period since the Holocaust in which Islamism and the far-Left from which Mr Corbyn hails have played a well-documented part. By making his claim that an Israeli tail controls the United States dog, Mr Corbyn is guilty, in the terms of the International Definition, of “making mendacious, dehumanising, demonising, or stereotypical allegations about Jews as such or the power of Jews as collective — such as, especially but not exclusively, the myth about a world Jewish conspiracy or of Jews controlling the media, economy, government or other societal institutions.”

The denial at the heart of the Labour Party’s antisemitism problem is embodied by Mr Corbyn. He can repeat indefinitely his assertion that he condemns antisemitism, but until he acknowledges its recent history, and accepts the definition endorsed by historians, governments, our Police and his parliamentary peers, he will continue to expose himself as a man supporting notions that are increasingly exposing British Jews to persecution.

Campaign Against Antisemitism has referred the leader of a ‘violent’ protest at UCL last week to the Metropolitan Police Service and UCL over antisemitic tweets which have come to light.

The protest last Thursday against the presence of an Israeli speaker at the university reportedly resulted in three female students being assaulted, whilst protesters surrounded and trapped attendees despite efforts by university security and police to separate them from the protesters. At one point protesters jumped through a window to confront the terrified audience of predominantly Jewish students.

Now, Campaign Against Antisemitism has contacted the police and the university regarding security at the event, the conduct of the protesters, and in particular their leader, UCLU Friends of Palestine Society President Yahya Abu Seido. Though Abu Seido’s Twitter account is protected, CAA has obtained tweets stating that:

  • “ISIS serves Israel”
  • The media is “Zionist”
  • “Zionists own the economy”
  • Israel should be destroyed
  • Israel is pursuing “Nazism”
  • “Little Israeli girls get brave on Twitter”

Several of the tweets are antisemitic according to the International Definition of Antisemitism.

CAA has also seen video footage appearing to show Abu Seido at the protest saying: “I hope you guys will think twice now next time you think about coming here.”

In a letter to UCL’s Provost, Professor Arthur, Gideon Falter, Chairman of Campaign Against Antisemitism called on him to take firm disciplinary action, writing: “The nature of the protest was intimidatory from the outset, and there is no question that attendees were terrified by the large mob of protesters seeking to surround and trap them.

“Footage of the protesters shows their leader telling attendees at the event: ‘I hope you guys will think twice now next time you think about coming here.’ Whereas criticism of Israel is not antisemitic, this protest was not criticism but part of a deliberate campaign of harassment and bullying, whose targets are overwhelmingly Jewish students. If reports that three female students were assaulted by the protesters are true, then that is a very serious matter, and the perpetrators must be expelled if they are found to be students.

“Jewish students are currently feeling threatened and isolated, not only at UCL but at universities around the country. UCL has the opportunity and the obligation to show in the firmest possible manner that those who bully, intimidate and harass Jewish students will suffer dire consequences for their actions, and that those who belittle or tolerate antisemitism will similarly be shown no quarter.”

The letter also called on UCL to investigate a statement by UCL Union which appeared to condone the protest.

Earlier this month, the House of Commons Home Affairs Committee released its report into the rise of antisemitism in Britain. In relation to antisemitism at universities, the Committee said that “The unique nature of antisemitism requires a unique response” and that “pro-Palestinian campaigns [must be educated so as to] avoid drawing on antisemitic rhetoric”.

This week, students attending an event about Israeli interactions with the Palestinian Authority have reported being surrounded, harassed and even assaulted. The students had to be escorted from the event by police for their own safety. This is the second time that we have received a flood of videos from our supporters of predominantly Jewish students being barricaded inside a room whilst those outside threaten and even attack them.

Campaign Against Antisemitism is concerned with antisemitism, as our name suggests, so when we hear about incidents like this, we look at whether the incident was antisemitic. We use the international definition of antisemitism which states that “criticism of Israel similar to that levelled against any other country cannot be regarded as antisemitic.”

The fact is that almost half of the world’s Jews live in Israel, which is the physical centre of the Jewish religion. There are very few strands of Judaism which renounce all connection with Israel, yet universities are quite happy for violent bullies to protest anything short of Jewish students in Britain fully severing their ties with Israel.

Criticism of Israel is not antisemitic, but these protests are not criticism, they are a deliberate campaign of harassment and bullying, and their targets are overwhelmingly Jewish students.

A phenomenon that we have come across on social media in particular, is when antisemitism becomes so disguised, that we find people engaging in antisemitism without even realising that what they are doing is antisemitic. In other cases, we find antisemites very deliberately targeting Jews and pretending that they are simply protesting against Israel. The motive is important to us, but more important than the motive is the antisemitic act itself.

When campus protests against Israel repeatedly become violent and overwhelmingly target Jewish students, the motive scarcely matters. We simply do not care what the protesters say they are protesting against, they have become thugs whose targets are Jews.

The perpetrators who committed crimes or breached university rules must be investigated and punished. Additionally, universities must get their act together and provide proper security on campus, seeking the assistance of police forces when necessary. Whilst enforcing penalties for this kind of behaviour is essential, the problem must also be fought through education, which is the very purpose for which universities exist; the rhetoric which leads to expressions of hatred such as we saw this week must be counteracted, and universities should fill that role.

Campaign Against Antisemitism will be in touch with the university and police to satisfy ourselves that they are doing everything possible to bring to justice those who committed criminal acts or breached university rules. This work will be undertaken by the volunteers of our Regulatory Enforcement Unit and our Demonstration and Event Monitoring Unit.

Londoner Stuart Birnie has been sentenced to six months in prison, beginning immediately, at a sentencing hearing at Wood Green Crown Court today.

On 17th December 2015, Mr Birnie saw a Jewish pedestrian and crossed the road to confront him, shouting: “Oi you go f*** yourself, I’m going to kill all the Jews.” He then yelled that “Jews produce too many kids” before repeating that he would “kill you and all the Jews.”

Stamford Hill Shomrim, the Jewish volunteer neighbourhood watch patrol deployed immediately and tracked Mr Birnie until police officers arrived to arrest him.

Mr Birnie told probation officers that the “situation in Stamford Hill is epidemic” as though Jews are a plague.

Miss Recorder Spiro said in delivering the sentence that the victim “was targeted purely because he was Jewish” and was left “frightened and heartbroken”.

In a statement, Jacob Weiss from Stamford Hill Shomrim said: “I welcome the immediate custodial prison sentence, it sends out a strong message that such behaviour is wholly unacceptable. Mr Birnie went out of his way to target his victim solely because he was Jewish.”

After a spate of light sentences, this is a very welcome result. The decision to imprison Mr Birnie for his actions sends a strong message that antisemitism carries severe consequences. We commend Stamford Hill Shomrim for their swift response to ensure that this racist was brought to justice.

Regrettably such convictions are rare due to reluctance on the part of the Crown Prosecution Service to take action against antisemites. While 2015 saw the worst level of antisemitic hate crime on record, we only know of 12 cases of antisemitic hate crime that the Crown Prosecution Service prosecuted, out of a total of 15,442 hate crimes prosecuted that year.

Neo-Nazi barrister Ian Millard was banned from the profession yesterday by the Bar Standards Board over his antisemitic tweets.

A five-person disciplinary tribunal of the Bar Standards Board convened in London yesterday and found Millard to be guilty of professional misconduct due to his extensive use of Twitter as a vehicle to publicise his extreme right-wing views.

A cursory glance at his timeline reveals that most of his racism is directed at Jews. Seven tweets from November 2014 formed the basis of the complaint against him. Five of these were overtly antisemitic, including:

  • “Pro-Zionist, pro-Jew expenses cheat Michael Gove, now diminished shrunk to his true level (2 inches off the ground). Liar.”
  • In reference to former French President, Nicholas Sarkozy: “@HeretoWhiteMan thank you. When one looks at that little Jew, one has to wonder what the French people saw in him, as he gesticulates etc.”
  • In reference to former co-chairman of the Conservative Party: “A million British people forced to use foodbanks and all the Jew Shapps can say is to parrot a list of hackneyed propaganda phrases.”
  • “Strange seeing Dominic Grieve, who reminds me of the days when many/most Conservative MPs were English gentlemen, not Jews or yobs.”
  • The fifth tweet was a picture of a swastika bearing the caption “Juden sind hier unerwunscht” (“Jews not wanted here.”)

Representing himself, Millard admitted authoring the tweets but denied that they were seriously offensive. In a rambling defence, he attempted to justify his actions by insisting that his views were either factually accurate or, in the case of the swastika, no different to material printed by the press. He also claimed that he was the victim of persecution, citing the fact that the Bar Standards Board had been alerted to his activities by Jonathan Goldberg QC, a director of UK Lawyers for Israel, as evidence of “Jewish-Zionist influence”. He also attempted to impugn the integrity of Baroness Deech, a patron of UK Lawyers for Israel, who chaired the Bar Standards Board when the complaint was brought against him.

The tribunal upheld all the charges against Millard, finding him guilty of behaving “in a way which is likely to diminish the trust and confidence which the public places in you or in the profession”. He was immediately disbarred.

Within hours of the verdict, he was back on Twitter, tweeting his support for Baroness Tonge in the wake of her suspension for hosting an antisemitic event at the House of Lords, as well as a video of a rabidly antisemitic speech by Adolf Hitler.

Campaign Against Antisemitism has reported Millard to the police over his incitement to racial and religious hatred.

Following her suspension from the Liberal Democrat party pending investigation, Baroness Tonge has resigned from the Party. She had already had the Party whip withdrawn in 2012 over antisemitic comments that Israel should be destroyed.

Her resignation is the culmination of a long history of baiting Jews.

We are pleased that she is no longer a member of the Liberal Democrat party, but it shames the Party that she was allowed to remain a member for so long, despite her comments.

Attention will now turn to Baroness Tonge’s ongoing membership of the House of Lords, which she used on Tuesday to host an event at which attendees compared Israel to ISIS and claimed that Jews “provoked” their own genocide in the Holocaust.

It is high time that Baroness Tonge was stripped of her peerage.

Baroness Tonge specialises in baiting Jews, as we have been reminded in recent months by her renewed antisemitic statements.

We welcome Baroness Tonge’s suspension from the Liberal Democrats in response to complaints from Campaign Against Antisemitism and others, but Party Leader Tim Farron must now procure Baroness Tonge’s long-overdue expulsion from the Party.

Baroness Tonge’s ongoing membership of the House of Lords and the Liberal Democrats is a disgrace to both institutions. It is indefensible that the Liberal Democrats withdrew the whip in 2012 over her antisemitic remarks then but have allowed her to remain a Party member since. Her latest remarks have caused multiple complaints to her Party, including from Campaign Against Antisemitism, and the departure of at least one senior Liberal Democrat, but so far the Party has simply defended her. Each day that Mr Farron allows people like Baroness Tonge and former MP David Ward to remain in the Party leads more Jews to wonder quite how serious the Liberal Democrats are about fighting antisemitism.

The Liberal Democrats must now act decisively to purge their Party of high-profile antisemites and ensure that this cannot happen again by adopting our manifesto for fighting antisemitism in political parties as backed by the Home Affairs Committee.

 

 

Whilst Liberal Democrat Baroness Jenny Tonge and Liberal Democrat Councillor and former MP David Ward have baited Jews in recent weeks, the Liberal Democrats have allowed both to remain Party members and Party leader Tim Farron has even defended David Ward.

Whilst Tim Farron appears to take no action whatsoever against two senior figures in his Party over complaints of antisemitism, a Jewish former candidate for the Party has decided to leave.

Matthew Harris, who stood as the Liberal Democrat candidate to become MP for Hendon in 2010 has had enough. In a blog post he wrote that the Party’s decision to defend Baroness Tonge was the “final straw”.

The Liberal Democrats have so far declined to answer Campaign Against Antisemitism’s letter regarding antisemitism in the Party.

On Friday, a report by Universities UK was released which made recommendations on fighting antisemitism. The 114-page report, which covers violence against women, harassment and all types of hate crime is the culmination of a study by a specially-convened Universities UK Taskforce. It is a tremendously disappointing document.

The report set out by spectacularly failing to grasp the scale of campus antisemitism. Firstly, the report cited figures for 2015 from the Community Security Trust noting that 21 incidents of antisemitism had been reported to the charity’s reporting helpline by students, comprising just 2% of the cases reported. The report based its assertions that antisemitism was not at alarming levels on that data, despite admitting that under-reporting was likely to be a significant problem. Indeed, the likely reason that so few cases of antisemitism are reported on campus is that such incidents have become so frequent, and the response so lacking, that Jewish students see reporting incidents as a waste of their time. Under-reporting is a symptom of a failure to enforce, but Universities UK did not draw that conclusion.

The report also cited a study from 2011 by the Equality Challenge Unit which asked just 20 Jewish students whether they felt discriminated against or harassed. Despite a quarter of them saying that they did, Universities UK concluded that the “vast majority” did not suffer problems. We would suggest that a quarter of Jewish students suffering from antisemitism is no cause for celebration, but in any case we wonder how Universities UK can possibly justify reliance on a survey of just 20 Jews.

The report’s principal failure however is not to have recommended firm steps against antisemitism. Instead, the report offered no significant new recommendations, instead merely congratulating universities on their good work and merely exhorting them to continue what they already do.

Whereas the report was commendably thorough in analysing violence against women, it cited multiple definitions of antisemitism but did not lend its backing to any of them.

Antisemitism at universities is a major problem. Those responsible for tackling it must have a detailed understanding of the challenges Jewish students face, and the forms antisemitism on campus often takes.

Universities UK missed the opportunity to meaningfully grapple with antisemitism. They failed to show any evidence in their report that they had understood the challenges that Jewish students face, and by recommending more of the same when it comes to fighting antisemitism on campus, Universities UK is simply sentencing Jewish students to a future in which antisemitism continues to rise, relatively undisturbed. All the more reason to be thankful for the House of Commons Home Affairs Committee’s report on antisemitism in the UK, which addressed antisemitism at universities with specific recommendations.

The Crown Prosecution Service has now concluded a consultation on the prosecution of crime on social media, paving the way for its new guidance on the issue to be adopted. Antisemitism on social media is a growing problem, made all the worse by the culture of impunity which allows UK-based antisemites to incite hatred against Jews without fear of the law, but Campaign Against Antisemitism does not expect the Crown Prosecution Service’s new guidance to make much difference.

The problem is not that the old guidance was inadequate, or that the new guidance fails to make improvements: we were happy with the old guidance, we participated in the consultation, and we are happy with the new guidance.

The problem is that out of 15,442 cases of hate crime prosecuted last year, we only know of the Crown Prosecution Service prosecuting twelve cases of antisemitic hate crime. The same year that the Crown Prosecution Service managed to so resoundingly ignore cases of hatred against Jews, crimes against Jews reached the highest level on record. This failure by the Crown Prosecution Service to prosecute antisemites sends three messages: it tells the police that effort investigating antisemitism is probably going to be wasted, it tells Jews that they are not going to be protected, and it tells antisemites that they can continue to stoke the flames of antisemitism.

The Crown Prosecution Service is badly broken, and no amount of guidance will fix that unless the Director of Public Prosecutions, Alison Saunders, starts to authorise prosecutions against antisemites. At present, she shows no signs of doing that.

An exposé in The Telegraph appears to confirm our suspicions that Shami Chakrabarti’s peerage was a reward for her whitewash report into antisemitism in the Labour Party. Baroness Chakrabarti was then named Shadow Attorney General.

Shami Chakrabarti’s inquiry into antisemitism was suspected of being a fraud from the moment she promised to conduct it in Labour’s interests. Sure enough, she delivered a whitewash which failed to deal with Labour’s antisemitism problem in any meaningful way. She did not tackle allegations of antisemitism in the Labour Party or their woeful handling by Jeremy Corbyn, and she even refused to adopt a definition of antisemitism.

According to The Telegraph, “Jeremy Corbyn discussed giving Shami Chakrabarti a peerage with his team in March, it has emerged, amid claims she was aware her name was listed before agreeing to conduct a Labour report into antisemitism…The Shadow Attorney General’s name was added [to the honours list] before she was approached to conduct a report into antisemitism and Labour sources have claimed that the peer was told this prior to the announcement on 29th April that she would chair an independent inquiry into antisemitism and other forms of racism in the Labour party.”

Shami Chakrabarti, Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour Party have all repeatedly denied that the offer of a peerage was made before Baroness Chakrabarti concluded her report into antisemitism.

The failure of Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party to stamp out antisemitism in its ranks was exacerbated by Shami Chakrabarti’s report into antisemitism and contributed to an institutional failure to address antisemitism which has made the Labour Party unsafe for British Jews.

Writing in The Times, the President of the Union of Jewish Students, Josh Seitler, has called on the President of the National Union of Students, Malia Bouattia, to fight antisemitism head on, or step down. In a scathing article, Seitler told Bouattia: “you have failed to act and so I am forced to say that the time for action is fast running out; it’s time to act now or it might be time for you to step down.”

Bouattia has previously called Birmingham University a “Zionist outpost in higher education” because it has “the largest Jsoc [Jewish student society] in the country.” She has railed against “Zionist-led media outlets”, defended Palestinian terrorism as “resistance” and voted against condemning ISIS. When called on by Campaign Against Antisemitism and countless student leaders to retract her comments, she penned an article in The Guardian claiming that her accusers were simply sexists and racists. Bouattia then drew further condemnation in July when she used her casting vote to strip Jewish students of their ability to elect their own representative. Student leaders have even gone so far as to write open letters expressing embarrassment and apologising to Jewish students for the actions of Bouattia and the National Union of Students.

The House of Commons Home Affairs Committee’s report into the rise of antisemitism in the UK released two weeks ago said that Bouattia “does not appear to take sufficiently seriously the issue of antisemitism on campus, and has responded to Jewish students’ concerns about her previous language with defensiveness and an apparent unwillingness to listen to their concerns…Referring to Birmingham University as a ‘Zionist outpost’ (and similar comments) smacks of outright racism.” In response, members of the National Union of Students’ Executive Committee joined an open letter claiming that the Home Affairs Committee was on a mission to “delegitimise NUS, and discredit Malia Bouattia”.

Bouattia continues to refute both criticism and attempts at dialogue, including from Campaign Against Antisemitism.

The following letter from Gideon Falter, Chairman of Campaign Against Antisemitism, was sent to the newly-elected Chair of the House of Commons Home Affairs Committee, and sent in copy to the MPs on the Committee who contributed to the Committee’s report on the rise of antisemitism in Britain.

Dear Ms Cooper,

I would like to congratulate you on your election as the new Chair of the House of Commons Home Affairs Committee.

As you know, the Committee published on Sunday its report on the rise of antisemitism in Britain, including recommendations that we have long called for. We hope that the report will prove to be a turning point in the fight against antisemitism in our country.

We have a limited window of opportunity to turn the tide against antisemitism in Britain. As I noted in my evidence to the Committee, Jews are leaving mainland Europe in their thousands, and antisemitic crime in Britain continues to rise to record levels. Should we succeed, Britain will remain a beacon of tolerance and justice, but should we fail, we British Jews will find ourselves on the same dark trajectory as Jews across mainland Europe.

For too long, Campaign Against Antisemitism has often been a solitary voice calling for the Government and political parties to adopt the international definition of antisemitism, for police forces and the Crown Prosecution Service to properly record, investigate and prosecute antisemitic crime, for the Labour Party and Liberal Democrats to fight antisemitism rather than normalising it, for the student movement to end the isolation and abandonment of Jewish students, and for social networks to shoulder their responsibility to cut off the torrent of hatred online.

The Committee listened, and by endorsing the measures we have called for, the Committee has forcefully challenged those responsible for allowing the normalisation of antisemitism. It was brave of the Committee to adopt the positions it has taken, and to pull no punches in doing so.

The Committee’s recommendations must be executed swiftly and in full. We hope that the first recommendation to be implemented will be the widespread adoption of the international definition of antisemitism by the Government, its agencies, and political parties, for as we have seen over the years, efforts to tackle antisemitism without defining it are doomed to failure.

There are only two respects in which we disagree with the report.

Firstly, the Committee found the performance of the justice system to be “for the most part, excellent”. Last year was the worst ever year on record for antisemitic hate crime, with a 26% rise in crime and a 51% leap in violent antisemitic crime, yet whilst the Crown Prosecution Service prosecuted a record 15,442 cases of hate crime, we are only aware of 12 prosecutions for antisemitic hate crime. We can assure the Committee from bitter experience in dealing with the Crown Prosecution Service that its shameful refusal to tackle antisemitism is only set to continue. Unless the failure of the Crown Prosecution Service is urgently addressed, the Committee’s other recommendations will ultimately prove to be ineffective on their own. For example, no action taken by social networks alone will be successful if the worst offenders face no criminal sanction for their persistent efforts to incite hatred against Jews.

Secondly, the report found the Cross-Government Working Group on Antisemitism to be “an effective forum for relationship-building, sharing of information and collaborative work aimed at addressing antisemitism in all communities” yet in reality the Working Group is exclusive, not inclusive. The organisations already represented on the Working Group determine the Working Group’s membership, and they use their position to ensure that less established voices are locked out. It is for that reason that Campaign Against Antisemitism has been forced to establish its own strong relationships with the Prime Minister’s Office, the Home Office, police forces and other Government bodies, rather than joining discussions within the Working Group. The consequence of allowing this situation to endure is that rather than the Government and its agencies having one discussion on antisemitism with all of the voices within the Jewish community, there are multiple disconnected conversations. That is best exemplified by the near total exclusion of the Ultra-Orthodox Charedi Jewish community from Government discussions, even though the Charedi community is the most visible Jewish community and therefore the most easily targeted.

Of course, the effectiveness of the Committee’s report will be judged by its implementation, but we are enormously grateful to the Committee for having taken this important first step, and there is no forum better suited to ensuring that the report’s recommendations are faithfully executed than the Committee itself.

We look forward to meeting with you and your colleagues on the Committee in order to discuss how we can work with you to the benefit of the entire Jewish community, and to our society as a whole.

Yours sincerely,

Gideon Falter
Chairman, Campaign Against Antisemitism

A man has been convicted after making antisemitic death threats in September. Shehroz Iqbal pleaded guilty and was given a suspended sentence today of 16 weeks’ imprisonment and 80 hours’ unpaid work.

The incident took place on 11th September, when Iqbal shouted “I’m going to kill you, I’m going to kill all of you Jews — you killed my brothers” at a Jewish motorist. Volunteers from Shomrim, the Jewish neighbourhood watch patrol, followed Iqbal’s car until officers from the Metropolitan Police Service arrived to arrest him. Once again, Shomrim’s vigilance and swift action has secured the arrest and conviction of a brazen antisemite.

Iqbal’s conviction is unfortunately one of very few. While 2015 saw the worst level of antisemitic hate crime on record, we only know of 12 cases of antisemitic hate crime that the Crown Prosecution Service prosecuted, out of a total of 15,442 hate crimes prosecuted that year.

More Nazi graffiti has been found in Stamford Hill by volunteers from Shomrim, the Jewish neighbourhood watch patrol. Swastikas and the German “Fick euch” (f*** you) was found on a fence near Jewish-owned shops and is believed to be fresh. The graffiti is thought to have appeared between 18:00 and midnight on Thursday night. Shomrim have reported the graffiti to the police so that it can be swiftly investigated and removed.

The Government has not yet formally responded to Sunday’s release of the Home Affairs Select Committee report on antisemitism, but Theresa May endorsed it today during Prime Minister’s Questions, and challenged other political parties to do the same. Jeremy Corbyn has already attacked the report. The report contains recommendations long called for by Campaign Against Antisemitism.

A neo-Nazi gig in Scotland has reportedly been called off after the Scottish Justice Minister called on the Home Secretary to intervene to ban the US-based band from entering the UK.

Various anti-fascist groups had said that Bound for Glory, a white supremacist band would be playing a gig in Falkirk on Saturday, but the event has apparently been called off.

Up to 500 neo-Nazis had been expected to attend.

Naomi Wimborne-Idrissi, Vice Chair of the Chingford branch of the Chingford and Woodford Green Constituency Labour Party, and the founder of Jews for Boycotting Israeli Goods, has taken to the airwaves to say that Israel has “inflicted” the Holocaust on other people and “they use and exploit” the Holocaust for political ends.

She said: “When it comes to the Holocaust, of course, there must never be any minimisation of that horror. It’s inflicted on other people in the sense that apologists for Israel use the suffering of Jews to excuse the suffering of Palestinians. I hear it all the time: ‘Oh, they’ve suffered so much, let them get on with it.’ I’m not saying that Israel is committing a Holocaust. I’m saying they use and exploit the fact of the Holocaust to justify what are, in some cases, crimes against humanity…So the mass slaughter of Jews in Europe should never be inflicted on others. That’s my view and that includes Palestinians. But for that, I’m called a self-hating Jew.”

Her statement is antisemitic according to the international definition of antisemitism which the Home Affairs Select Committee on Sunday unanimously recommended that all parties should use, in accordance with Campaign Against Antisemitism’s manifesto for fighting antisemitism in political parties.

The definition says that “Drawing comparisons of contemporary Israeli policy to that of the Nazis” is antisemitic.

Wimborne-Idrissi’s latest tirade came less than three weeks since she last appeard on LBC and moved a Labour MP to tears by accusing Ruth Smeeth, a Jewish Labour MP, of having staged an antisemitic incident as a means to attack Jeremy Corbyn. At the time, she claimed that Smeeth “is against Corbyn, against his whole Socialist vision”. Referring to the whitewash Chakrabarti inquiry, she added: “The Chakrabarti Commission has been undermined at every turn by people like Ruth Smeeth and Louise Ellman [another Jewish Labour MP] and others like them who have a political agenda. The question of antisemitism is being used as a weapon in a political battle.”

We are not aware of any disciplinary action having been taken against Wimborne-Idrissi, but in any case the Labour Party has refused to reveal whether it is disciplining members accused of antisemitism.

 

The day after the publication of the Home Affairs Select Committee report on antisemitism in Britain, two well-known Liberal Democrats, have made comments baiting Jews on social media. Both Baroness Tonge and former MP — now a Councillor — David Ward, have previously had the whip withdrawn by the Liberal Democrats, but they remain members of the Party and have recently been defended by the Party.

On Monday, Baroness Jenny Tonge complained on Facebook that her letter blaming Israel for antisemitism in the UK had been rejected by The Guardian. In her letter, without a trace of irony, she welcomed the Select Committee’s report, then continued “It is difficult to believe that a 75% increase in antisemitism it reports, have been committed by people who simply hate Jewish people for no reason. It is surely the case that these incidents are reflecting the disgust amongst the general public of the way the government of Israel treats Palestinians and manipulates the USA and ourselves to take no action against that country’s blatant disregard of International Law and the Geneva Conventions.”

Her explanation for antisemitism is in fact antisemitic according to the international definition of antisemitism which the Select Committee on Sunday recommended that all parties should use, in accordance with Campaign Against Antisemitism’s manifesto for fighting antisemitism in political parties. The definition says that “Holding Jews collectively responsible for actions of the state of Israel” and “Making mendacious, dehumanising, demonising, or stereotypical allegations about…Jews controlling the media, economy, government or other societal institutions” is antisemitic.

Additionally, late on Sunday night Councillor David Ward (a former MP) tweeted in response to the report that “The Zionists are winning despite the appalling racism of the State of #Israel and its supporters — don’t give up — good will triumph bad”.

The report said that “the word ‘Zionist’ (or worse, ‘Zio’) as a term of abuse has no place in a civilised society…[and] this should be communicated by the Government and political parties”.

Both Tonge and Ward have been defended recently by the Liberal Democrats.

Last week, Tim Farron, Leader of the Liberal Democrats, told the Home Affairs Select Committee that Councillor Ward had “served his time” after he had the whip withdrawn while he was a Liberal Democrat MP for comments equating the Jewish people with Nazis while implying that it is for the victims of the Holocaust to learn a lesson from it, as well as questioning Israel’s right to exist at all.

Three weeks ago, the Liberal Democrats declined to expel Baroness Jenny Tonge from the Party over her various antisemitic statements, including her recent call in the House of Lords for British Jews to “publicly to condemn settlement building by Israel and to make clear their support for universal human rights”. The Liberal Democrat Party wrote to people who complained about Baroness Tonge’s remarks to tell them that it was “offensive” for her to have held British Jews accountable for the perceived actions of the State of Israel, but that her remarks “still fall short of being racist”. That is not what the definition of antisemitism endorsed by the Select Committee says.

Both David Ward and Baroness Tonge are serial offenders and it is hard to see why the Liberal Democrats repeatedly refuse to expel them. Just a day after it was released, the Select Committee’s report on antisemitism is receiving its first test. The Select Committee recommended that all parties should use the international definition of antisemitism, in accordance with Campaign Against Antisemitism’s manifesto for fighting antisemitism in political parties. Under the definition, the offences are clear and the Liberal Democrats must expel David Ward and Baroness Tonge without further delay.

Just on Sunday the Select Committee pointed out that antisemitism flourishes under leaders who tolerate it, as continues to be graphically evidenced in the Labour Party under Jeremy Corbyn. For Tim Farron to leave this matter here would amount to a similar display of hypocritical and weak leadership; if he does not comply with the Select Committee’s recommendations by expelling both David Ward and Baroness Tonge, he will be signalling that the Liberal Democrat Party is a safe space for antisemites.

Joe Glasman, Head of Political and Government Investigations at Campaign Against Antisemitism, has written to Tim Farron, Leader of the Liberal Democrats.

The House of Commons Home Affairs Select Committee today published its report following its inquiry into the rise of antisemitism in Britain. The report endorsed recommendations made by Campaign Against Antisemitism over the past two years, tackling the definition of antisemitism, antisemitism in political parties, antisemitism in student politics, the failure of social networks to interrupt the spread of antisemitism and improvements required in policing. The report was swiftly attacked by Jeremy Corbyn, among others, and Campaign Against Antisemitism’s Chairman, Gideon Falter, and Head of Political and Government Investigations, Joe Glasman, took to the airwaves to defend it and call for its recommendations to be implemented swiftly. We have also published a summary of the report and our response to it.

Below are three of our interviews conducted today with BBC Radio 5, BBC News and Sky News.

CAA Chairman, Gideon Falter, on BBC Radio 5:

CAA Head of Political and Government Investigations, Joe Glasman, on BBC News:

CAA Head of Political and Government Investigations, Joe Glasman, on Sky News:

 

The following letter by Gideon Falter, Chairman of Campaign Against Antisemitism, to the Acting Chairman of the Home Affairs Select Committee was included as evidence in the report of the Select Committee among other evidence provided to the Select Committee by Campaign Against Antisemitism. We have published a summary of the report and our response to it.

Dear Mr Loughton,

Inquiry into the rise of antisemitism

You may know that every week, synagogues around the world read a portion of the Torah. A few weeks ago, a portion was read which contains in it three words that form the basis of Western civilisation: tzedek, tzedek tirdof — justice, justice you shall pursue.

These simple words were radical. In a time when power was wielded through the sword and by wealth, the idea that justice should be the ultimate goal of every person and the worthiest form of power was bold and new. It goes to the essence of what civilisation is: without justice we cannot thrive. We cannot consider ourselves civilised.

When I look at the plight of Jews across Europe, I think of those words. I wonder how far Europe will tolerate intolerance. Will Europe pursue justice?

Events answer that question for me.

Law enforcement against extremists cannot wax and wane. If you let hate thrive for decades and decades, then you eventually pass a point of no return. The terrorist attacks we are witnessing around Europe were born in a vacuum; they were born in a vacuum of law enforcement, where extremism was tolerated with minimal disruption by acquiescent liberal states fearful of causing upset.

We talk so much about immigration into Europe that sometimes we forget to look at who is leaving, and Jews are leaving. Thankfully there is no global database tracking the migration of Jews, but Israel does count the number of people availing themselves of the Law of Return, which guarantees Jews unconditional safe haven. Since 2000, 6% of the Jewish population of Europe has emigrated to Israel. In 2014 the rate of Jewish emigration doubled to its highest ever level and rose again in 2015. Leaving your home is not a snap decision, and for it to have sped up so dramatically shows that it has momentum. For many of those who emigrate, it will have been a decision that was ten years in the making. And in addition to that 6%, there are more Jews still, perhaps another 6%, who are leaving mainland Europe and coming to Britain, or the United States.

Jews across Europe are justified in thinking that society and the state have failed to step forward to end the wave of antisemitism that is behind this emigration. Had the only terrorist murders in Paris in January last year been the four Jews doing their weekly shop at the kosher supermarket, would there have been a million people demonstrating in the street? We know from the shooting at the Jewish Museum in Brussels, and the horrific shooting of three Jewish children and their teacher at a Jewish school in Toulouse, that the million-man demonstrations do not materialise when the dead are ‘just Jews’. After November’s terrorist attacks in Paris, many started saying that “everyone is a target” but they were already a target — Jews are part of “everyone”. When Jews start leaving, it is the surest possible sign that society itself is collapsing.

But Jews are not just leaving because of the major terrorist attacks that make the headlines. They are leaving because of stories like that of Samuel and Diana Blog, both in their late eighties, both Holocaust survivors. One night two men noticed the Jewish mezuzah on their front door in Amsterdam. They pretended to be police officers and barged in. As they shouted “dirty Jews” they beat Samuel until he was blind. They broke Samuel and Diana’s bones until they were wheelchair-bound for life.

So what can we in Britain learn from the rest of Europe? We could comfort ourselves. We could use Jews as a gauge of our society’s health, and our country is one of the best places in the world to be a Jew. We are offering a haven to the afflicted. Some London synagogues are now conducting their services in French. But we should not be comfortable at all.

Four years ago, two British Islamists, Sajid and Shasta Khan, were caught by total fluke. They had been building bombs in their front room and planned to attack the British Jewish community. One day they had an argument which the neighbours overheard and called the police. That is how close we came to a bomb attack on British Jews.

We are in the midst of the Jewish High Holy Days, and once again synagogue-goers will pass airport-style security that has been the norm here for decades. But in 2014, when antisemitic attacks here broke all records during the Gaza war, many tried to explain it away as some sort of rage against Israel. If that is the case, why the following year, 2015, did Campaign Against Antisemitism’s National Antisemitic Crime Audit discover that antisemitic crime had jumped 26% to a new record high? Why, in the absence of the convenient excuse of a war in Gaza, did violent attacks on Jews surge by 51% last year?

The reason is that at the same time as antisemitic crime was breaking new records, the charging of antisemitic crime dropped.

We do not believe that there is a hierarchy of hate, but antisemitism is different from other types of racist hatred. It is no mere prejudice; it endures because it is an ideology. It presents itself as a form of justice. Whereas other forms of racism slur their victims to diminish them, antisemitism does the opposite. Jews are presented as conniving, corrupting, parasites who wield immense power to the detriment of society. Antisemites present themselves as agents of justice, freeing mankind from Jewish dominance.

Like all ideologies, antisemitism has its own antibodies. Every Jewish contribution to society is cast as a bid for power. Every person who does not adopt antisemitism is dismissed as weak and blind. Every opponent of antisemitism is discredited as being part of a Jewish conspiracy or in the pay of Jews. Call an antisemite antisemitic and they will insist that you are smearing them to stop them exposing Jewish power. This has been accelerated by social media, which has enabled antisemitic ideology to become ‘open source’, allowing it to mutate faster than ever before, combining the strains of far-right antisemitism, far-left antisemitism and Islamist antisemitism into one super-resistant antisemitic ideology that is almost invulnerable to the usual social immune defences of reason and opprobrium.

It is due to these traits that antisemitism spreads faster than other prejudices, and for that reason we simply cannot wait for the slow progress that the criminal justice system is making in tackling hate crime as a whole. Antisemitism needs forceful, immediate and specific action.

Instead, the opposite is happening. The Crown Prosecution Service has proudly announced that it prosecuted more hate crime than ever before last year — 15,442 cases — yet as far as we know, only twelve of those cases were prosecutions of antisemitic hate crime. We cannot know exactly because the Crown Prosecution Service refuses to provide any breakdown of its statistics.

Campaign Against Antisemitism deals daily with police forces, regulators and the Crown Prosecution Service. It is our opinion that it is almost impossible for an unaided Jewish layperson to successfully ensure that a non-violent antisemitic crime of which they are victim is investigated and prosecuted. Indeed, even in the cases in which we become closely involved in supporting the victim and dealing with police and Crown Prosecution Service, we are met with flat, unaccountable refusal to act, either by the police or Crown Prosecution Service. This allows antisemitic incitement and low-level crime to escalate and spread as antisemites are emboldened, and as the Jewish community increasingly views reporting antisemitic hate crime as an exercise in futility. The situation has become so desperate that we have now launched judicial review proceedings against the Crown Prosecution Service, and will soon commence private prosecutions.

We have one of the strongest legislative frameworks in Europe for fighting hate crime and extremism but we are not using it effectively. For all the talk about cracking down on hate crime following Brexit, we have seen no evidence of any meaningful action against resurgent far-right groups, the antisemitic extreme-left has taken over the Labour Party, and it has taken over 20 years for us to finally silence the Islamist preacher Anjem Choudary.

There is the political will to enforce the law against antisemites and extremists, but the breakdown occurs in police forces and the Crown Prosecution Service. Antisemitism is rarely a hot topic for long, and in competition with domestic violence or benefits fraud, antisemitism is often left to fester, which is exactly how it thrives. The consequence is that we are treating the cancer of growing extremism only when it is already strong and at its most violent. We are not ripping it out by its roots.

Campaign Against Antisemitism is working to change that. We have earned the support of the Prime Minister and her team precisely because we hold the authorities’ feet to the fire, even taking them to court when necessary. This is the fight for our country and we must not lose.

Unless we act now to act against antisemites as forcefully as the law will permit, then antisemitism will continue to spread, antisemites will become bolder, attacks on Jews will become more common and more ferocious, the Jewish community will become more fearful and start making plans to emigrate, and the golden era for Jews in Britain will have ended.

The words are as true now as they ever were: tzedek, tzedek tirdof — justice, justice we must pursue.

Yours sincerely,

Gideon Falter
Chairman, Campaign Against Antisemitism

The House of Commons Home Affairs Select Committee today publishes its report following its inquiry into the rise of antisemitism in Britain. Campaign Against Antisemitism has already responded.

The report is extremely critical of Jeremy Corbyn, saying: “While the Labour Leader has a proud record of campaigning against many types of racism, based on the evidence we have received, we are not persuaded that he fully appreciates the distinct nature of post-Second World War antisemitism.” The report then attacked Corbyn’s “lack of consistent leadership on this issue, and his reluctance to separate antisemitism from other forms of racism” which it said “has created what some have referred to as a ‘safe space’ for those with vile attitudes towards Jewish people.”

In some of the report’s bluntest comments, it says “This situation has been further exacerbated by the Party’s demonstrable incompetence at dealing with members accused of antisemitism, as illustrated by the saga involving the suspension, re-admittance and re-suspension of Jackie Walker. The ongoing membership of Ken Livingstone, following his outbursts about Hitler and Zionism, should also have been dealt with more effectively. The result is that the Labour Party, with its proud history of fighting racism and promoting equal rights, is seen by some as an unwelcoming place for Jewish members and activists.”

The report also issues a biting verdict on the contribution of Shami Chakrabarti to Labour’s antisemitism crisis. During Corbyn’s testimony, Chakrabarti had to be repeatedly told to stop passing Corbyn notes. The report says: “The Chakrabarti report makes recommendations about creating a more robust disciplinary process within the Labour Party, but it is clearly lacking in many areas; particularly in its failure to differentiate explicitly between racism and antisemitism. The fact that the report describes occurrences of antisemitism merely as ‘unhappy incidents’ also suggests that it fails to appreciate the full gravity of the comments that prompted the inquiry in the first place. These shortfalls, combined with Ms Chakrabarti’s decision to join the Labour Party in April and accept a peerage as a nominee of the Leader of that Party, and her subsequent appointment as Shadow Attorney General, have thrown into question her claims (and those of Mr Corbyn) that her inquiry was truly independent. Ms Chakrabarti has not been sufficiently open with the Committee about when she was offered her peerage, despite several attempts to clarify this issue with her. It is disappointing that she did not foresee that the timing of her elevation to the House of Lords, alongside a report absolving the Labour Leader of any responsibility for allegations of increased antisemitism within his Party, would completely undermine her efforts to address this issue. It is equally concerning that Mr Corbyn did not consider the damaging impression likely to be created by this sequence of events.”

Attacking specific recommendations made by Chakrabarti, the report echoes our call that “The Labour Party, and all other political parties in the same circumstances, should publish a clear public statement alongside every reinstatement or expulsion of a member after any investigation into suspected antisemitism.” The report continues: “We see no good reason for the Chakrabarti report’s proposed statute of limitations on antisemitic misdemeanours. Antisemitism is not a new concept: an abusive, antisemitic tweet sent in 2013 is no more defensible than one sent in 2016. If the Labour Party or any other organisation is to demonstrate that it is serious about antisemitism, it should investigate all allegations with equal seriousness, regardless of when the behaviour is alleged to have taken place…The Chakrabarti Report is ultimately compromised by its failure to deliver a comprehensive set of recommendations, to provide a definition of antisemitism, or to suggest effective ways of dealing with antisemitism. The failure of the Labour Party to deal consistently and effectively with antisemitic incidents in recent years risks lending force to allegations that elements of the Labour movement are institutionally antisemitic.”

Taking aim at Labour figures’ constant references to “antisemitism and all forms of racism”, the report warns “If antisemitism is subsumed into a generic approach to racism, its distinctive and dangerous characteristics will be overlooked. In addition, the Labour Party’s disciplinary process must acknowledge the fact that an individual’s demonstrated opposition to other forms of racism does not negate the possibility that they hold antisemitic beliefs; nor does it neutralise any expression of these beliefs.”

In a statement seen by Campaign Against Antisemitism, Jeremy Corbyn has responded. His statement shows that he is still determined to fight the antisemitism of the Holocaust and workplace discrimination whilst ignoring Labour’s abject failure to tackle antisemitism in its midst. He shows that he has learned nothing at all by brazenly holding up the discredited Chakrabarti whitewash as a model approach to fighting antisemitism in political parties.

Jeremy Corbyn’s full statement full is as follows:

“Antisemitism is an evil, which led to the worst crimes of the 20th century. Every one of us has a responsibility to ensure that it is never allowed to fester in our society again. So we must all be concerned when we hear that antisemitic incidents are on the rise again. Last week I spoke at the 80th anniversary commemoration of the Battle of Cable Street and was privileged to meet some veterans of it. And I had hoped that the Home Affairs Committee report ‘Antisemitism in the UK’ would offer all of us some guidance on how we can take forward the fight against antisemitism.
“I welcome some recommendations in the report, such as strengthening anti-hate crime systems, demanding Twitter take stronger action against antisemitic trolling and allow users to block keywords, and support for Jewish communal security. I will be writing to both Twitter and Facebook to request urgent meetings to discuss tackling online abuse.

“The report in fact echoes much of Labour’s own Chakrabarti Inquiry report, including recommendations on language, stereotyping and training. However, there are some important opportunities lost. The committee chose not to look in any detail at – or come up with proposals for – combatting antisemitism in other parties, our major civic institutions, in the workplace, in schools, in all those places where Jewish people’s life chances might be at risk through antisemitism. In the Labour Party, which has been at the forefront of those struggles for equality, we remain committed to doing so. We continue to work with Jewish and other organisations in that endeavor, and are saddened that those on the Committee have chosen not to contribute to it.
“The report unfairly criticises Shami Chakrabarti for not being sufficiently independent. This fails to acknowledge public statements that the offer to appoint Chakrabarti to the House of Lords came after completion of her report, and was based on her extensive legal and campaigning experience. Commissioning Chakrabarti was an unprecedented step for a political party, demonstrating Labour’s commitment to fight against antisemitism. Labour is already acting on her recommendations, including reform of our internal procedures, changes to the Party’s rule book and expansion of training to tackle antisemitism.

“The Inquiry, which included Baroness Jan Royall, former leader of the House of Lords, and David Feldman, Director of the Pears Institute for the Study of Antisemitism on its panel, was praised by a number of bodies, including the Jewish Labour Movement, and by John Mann, the Chair of the All Parliamentary Party Group against Antisemitism. I am proud that Labour is the only party that has specific protections in place to ensure a zero tolerance approach to antisemitism.

“I am also concerned by some other aspects of the Committee’s report. The Committee heard evidence from too narrow a pool of opinion, and its then-chair rejected both Chakrabarti’s and the Jewish Labour Movement’s requests to appear and give evidence before it. Not a single woman was called to give oral evidence in public, and the report violates natural justice by criticising individuals without giving them a right to be heard. The report’s political framing and disproportionate emphasis on Labour risks undermining the positive and welcome recommendations made in it. Although the Committee heard evidence that 75 per cent of antisemitic incidents come from far right sources, and the report states there is no reliable evidence to suggest antisemitism is greater in Labour than other parties, much of the report focuses on the Labour party.

“As the report rightly acknowledges, politicising antisemitism — or using it as a weapon in controversies between and within political parties — does the struggle against it a disservice. Under my leadership, Labour has taken greater action against anti-Semitism than any other party, and will implement the measures recommended by the Chakrabarti report to ensure Labour is a welcoming environment for members of all our communities.”

The House of Commons Home Affairs Select Committee today publishes its report following its inquiry into the rise of antisemitism in Britain.

We could not have said it better ourselves: we are pleased to see that the Select Committee has listened to Campaign Against Antisemitism and that the report firmly endorses measures we have been calling for for two years.

The Select Committee’s rigorous report is uncompromising on the rise in antisemitism and the danger it presents. It directly accuses the enablers of growing antisemitism, including social networks, those on the far-left who allow vile Jew hatred to masquerade as political discourse, and the student leaders who have abandoned Jewish students.

The inquiry called Jeremy Corbyn and Ken Livingstone, among others, to give evidence. Campaign Against Antisemitism’s evidence included a letter, research and information on our recommendations.

The report makes the following key recommendations, which endorse our own:

  • The international definition of antisemitism used by the College of Policing, the European Parliament, the US Department of State and the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance “should be formally adopted by the UK Goverment, law enforcement agencies and all political parties”. We have called for this since we launched our five point plan in 2015 and our manifesto for fighting antisemitism in political parties last month, and we repeated this in submissions to the Select Committee.
  • Use of “the word ‘Zionist’ (or worse, ‘Zio’) as a term of abuse has no place in a civilised society…[and] this should be communicated by the Government and political parties”.
  • Police forces should improve the consistency and accuracy with which antisemitic crime is recorded and investigated, noting that “we question why police forces operating in counties in which thousands of Jewish people live, have recorded few or no antisemitic crimes”. This echoes the findings of our National Antisemitic Crime Audit, released earlier this year.
  • “The Government, police and prosecuting authorities must…pursue a robust, zero-tolerance approach to this problem”. We are very pleased by this recommendation, which has been at the core of our message since Campaign Against Antisemitism was formed in 2014.
  • Social networks are acting as a “deplorable…inert host for vast swathes of antisemitic hate speech and abuse” and must “significantly expand its enforcement remit to include proactive identification of abusive users”. We have called for this privately in meetings with social networks, and publicly when they failed to cooperate.
  • Police forces should appoint a “dedicated hate crime officer” so that “individuals reporting hate crime…have a single point of contact”.  We called for this in our National Antisemitic Crime Audit, released earlier this year.
  • The National Union of Students and its President should reverse their damaging antisemitic comments and the removal of Jewish students’ rights to choose their own representative. We have called for this repeatedly, along with others.

The report also finds that Jeremy Corbyn has shown a “lack of consistent leadership” has created a “‘safe space’ for those with vile attitudes towards Jewish people” in the Labour Party. The Select Committee was evidently disgusted by Ken Livingstone’s claims that Adolf Hitler “supported Zionism” as well as Shami Chakrabarti’s whitewash report into antisemitism in the Labour Party. The Select Committee additionally criticises the handling of antisemitism in the Liberal Democrat Party and National Union of Students.

The Select Committee’s report quotes extensively from Campaign Against Antisemitism’s research and recognises that antisemitism in Britain has reached a tipping point. The report makes recommendations which endorse the measures we have called for and must be urgently implemented.

Our only criticism of the report is that it is not sufficiently condemnatory of the Crown Prosecution Service whose response to antisemitism has been utterly deplorable. 15,442 cases of hate crime were prosecuted last year, but we know of only 12 prosecutions for antisemitic hate crime. In the same year, antisemitic crime in the UK reached a record high, rising 26% with antisemitic violence leaping by 51%, yet charging dropped. The Director of Public Prosecutions is presiding over an abject failure to crack down on antisemitism.

As Jews once again leave Europe and antisemitism is rising with chilling celerity in Britain, it is absolutely right that the Select Committee has endorsed the measures we have called for. They must now be swiftly implemented: the international definition of antisemitism must be universally adopted and applied — including in political parties — and the authorities must enforce the law against antisemitism with zero tolerance.

In an astonishing announcement, Tim Farron, Leader of the Liberal Democrat Party, has welcomed a politician he acknowledges to be an antisemite back into the Liberal Democrat fold. Mr Farron admitted freely that David Ward is an antisemite, but that he has “served his time” after completing a period of suspension under Party rules.

Mr Ward has in the past equated the Jewish people with Nazis while implying that it is for the victims of the Holocaust to learn a lesson from it, as well as questioning Israel’s right to exist at all.

According to the international definition of antisemitism, endorsed by this country among 31 others, the College of Policing and the European Parliament, Mr Ward is an antisemite, and he was rightly suspended. Yet he has recently supported the now contrite Naz Shah over her comments that Jews in Israel should be forcibly transported to the United States of America and has also made controversial comments in a debate, indicating that he shows no contrition for his earlier offences.

The Liberal Democrats have form, having declined to expel Baroness Jenny Tonge for any number of antisemitic statements, including echoing the blood libel in her claim that Israeli soldiers sent to help with relief after the Haitian earthquake were there to harvest organs from dead bodies.

Antisemitism flourishes under leaders who tolerate it, as continues to be graphically evidenced in the Labour Party under Jeremy Corbyn. For Tim Farron to leave this matter here would amount to a similar display of hypocritical and weak leadership; he should send a clear signal that antisemitism is unacceptable by expelling both David Ward and Jenny Tonge, or he will be signalling that the Liberal Democrat Party is a safe space for antisemites.

The Labour Party is continuing to refuse to comment on cases of antisemitism, and refused today to condemn or say what will happen to Councillor Andrew Slack, who posted an antisemitic image on Facebook.

The image stated that “The modern state of Israel was created by the Rothschilds, not God, and what they are doing to the Palestinian people now is EXACTLY what they intend for the whole world.” The image then shows a photograph of an injured baby with the caption “Today its [sic] a Palestinian child, soon it will be your child” along with a caricature of a hook-nosed Jew, his hands soaked in blood, licking blood from his lips, next to a UN logo with a Star of David replacing the map of the world at its centre.

The image is a modern day blood libel, claiming that bloodthirsty Jews are seeking to harm non-Jewish children. It also uses an extremely antisemitic caricature and explicitly alleges that Jews and Jewish bankers seek world domination.

Councillor Slack told the Guido Fawkes political blog: “I wish to apologise for an offensive post which I shared for a short time without properly reading one content, especially anyone of the Jewish faith. I also apologise to my Labour Party colleagues and point out that it had no connection with any organisation which I am a member.”

When Guido Fawkes asked the Labour Party to comment on what would happen, and whether they condemned one of their Councillors for posting of image, they used absurd new rules introduced by Shadow Attorney General Baroness Chakrabarti to simply say: “We do not comment on individual’s membership status.” The Councillor himself has now admitted that he has been suspended, but the Party still refuses to comment and in any case suspensions for antisemitism in the Labour Party tend not to last very long or have any significant consequences.

A month-long study within part of London’s ultra-Orthodox (Charedi) Jewish Community has revealed the shocking racist abuse suffered daily by the most visibly-identifiable Jews in Britain. The results are said by Rabbi Herschel Gluck OBE, President of Stamford Hill Shomrim, which carried out the research, to be “the tip of the iceberg”.

Over the course of years of abuse, during which there have been sparse convictions, reporting of antisemitic crime against North East London’s Charedi community has been extremely low, making it very hard to accurately gauge the true extent of antisemitic crime.

For the first time, Shomrim’s study offers a unique insight into the shocking abuse suffered on a daily basis by ultra-Orthodox Jews, including young children, as they go about their lives on the streets of London. Shomrim carried out the study in the month leading up to National Hate Crime Awareness Week, and there was no campaign to increase reporting.

Describing the month as fairly typical, Shomrim recorded 32 antisemitic incidents at a rate of 8 incidents per week, dwarfing official police statistics of 2-3 crimes per month, but still only representing a fraction of the unreported antisemitic crimes perpetrated against London’s most readily-identifiable Jewish community. The incidents included three assaults, two threats to kill, eight threats of violence, eighteen cases of verbal abuse and one incident of criminal damage.

In one incident, a 28-year-old mother boarded a bus with her two children, aged 6 months and 4 years old, when another woman deliberately blocked her path, telling her: “I’m not going to move for you, you Jewish people are selfish, you Jewish people are bad”. In another, an 11-year-old boy was surrounded by youths and told to remove his skullcap. He was then told that he would be beaten up if he did not comply. In yet another incident, a 55-year-old Jewish women was asked whilst praying on the Jewish New Year (Rosh Hashanah) if she covered her hair because Hitler had shaved it off, before the perpetrator made a Nazi salute. On another occasion, three Jewish women were chased, terrified, through the street whilst a gang of teenage girls shouted “the Jewish people are rich, horrible Jewish people, give us your money”. At a synagogue, as a 38-year-old man left Shabbat services, a passerby grabbed his religious hat (shtreimel) and threw it to the ground. The youngest victim was an 8-year-old boy who was assaulted near his home by a male who told him he was a “stupid Jew”.

According to Shomrim’s statistics, the average age of the victims was 29.5, with the youngest victim just 8 years old, and the oldest 57 years old. 26 of the perpetrators were male, 3 were female, and 3 were of unknown gender. 23 of the perpetrators were described as adults, 6 were children, and 3 were of unknown age. 7 of the perpetrators were described (by the victim) as white, 8 were black, 11 were Asian, 2 were Middle Eastern, one was East Asian, and 3 were of unknown ethnicity.

Stamford Hill Shomrim supported all of the victims whilst ensuring that all of the crimes were reported to the Metropolitan Police Service, and assisting with the arrest of a suspect who was subsequently charged with an antisemitic offence. In the past five weeks, Shomrim has been directly involved with securing the convictions of three males in three separate antisemitic crimes.

This is the first time that antisemitic crime against ultra-Orthodox Jews has been so meticulously recorded. Shomrim does not regularly log and record antisemitic incidents in such detail due to lack of funding, meaning that the vast majority of antisemitic incidents against ultra-Orthodox Jews are not recorded, especially when victims do not wish to contact local police directly.

Recent Metropolitan Police Service figures show that on average 10 antisemitic hate crimes per month were recorded in the area covered by this study. In the Home Office’s most recent Hate Crime Action Plan, published in July, it was noted that “Jewish people from the [ultra-Orthodox] Charedi community are less likely than other sections of the Jewish community to report hate crimes to the authorities”.

Rabbi Herschel Gluck OBE, President of Stamford Hill Shomrim said: “It has long been said that antisemitism is under-reported in the Charedi Jewish community, which is the most visible segment of the Jewish community, but these figures are nevertheless shocking, even more so since this is only the tip of the iceberg. The Home Office must take urgent action to work directly with Stamford Hill Shomrim concerning the Charedi Jewish community, a community with a distinct ethos, sensitivities and structures, to enhance and improve the reporting of hate crimes.”

This meticulous month-long study by Shomrim shows the shocking extent to which members of the Jewish Charedi community, including very young children, are being singled out and targeted for racist assaults and abuse. Under-reporting of antisemitism in the Charedi community is largely due to the perception that nothing will be done, and that is why the work of Shomrim is so important, working closely with victims and the police to ensure that incidents are investigated and prosecuted.

Shomrim have been deservedly praised by the Metropolitan Police Service as the model for community engagement, yet their work is often frustrated by a failure to prosecute, and by light sentences when perpetrators are convicted. This makes the Jewish community less likely to report antisemitic crimes, and emboldens the perpetrators who often repeat their crimes. Shomrim operates a volunteer-run proactive neighbourhood watch scheme covering some of the largest populations of ultra-Orthodox Jews, who live predominantly in the boroughs of Hackney and Haringey in an area covering two square miles.

We were pleased that our call and Shomrim’s call for the Home Office to engage directly with Shomrim was adopted in the Hate Crime Action Plan, and this must now happen. Shomrim’s unique contribution to the fight against antisemitic crime is more potent and cost-effective than the police working alone, and so there is a strong case for Shomrim’s work to be extended with the help of a Home Office grant.

Last year, our National Antisemitic Crime Audit revealed that antisemitic crime reached a record high with a 26% increase in crime and a 51% leap in antisemitic violence against Jews. There is no more visible target than the Jewish Charedi community and as the intensity of antisemitic crime rises, now is the time for decisive action to strengthen Shomrim and extend their work.

A group of Jews walking in Manchester near a synagogue in Prestwich were reportedly threatened by a man wielding an axe and shouting antisemitic abuse. The incident is said to have taken place on Monday at 13:30 near a synagogue.

According to the Manchester Evening News, a man in a vehicle brandished an axe at the group whilst making antisemitic threats. A 45-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of a racially-aggravated public order offence and possession of an offensive weapon. He has been bailed until 31st October.

Sergeant Steve Wightman-Love, of Greater Manchester Police, told the Manchester Evening News: “This incident remains under investigation and officers in the case are continuing to make enquiries. However, I wish to remind everyone that we take all reports of hate crime extremely seriously.”

We will be following the case with interest.

Cambridgeshire Constabulary has failed to object to a neo-Nazi rally for hundreds of fascists from across Europe because they believed the organisers’ claims that they were holding a ‘charity event’. They have also claimed that there was no “crime committed” as hundreds of men performed Nazi salutes in response to antisemitic songs and calls of “Seig Heil”.

Blood and Honour, a neo-Nazi organisation banned in many European countries and Russia, held the event on 23rd and 24th September in Haddenham to commemorate the death of its founder, Ian Stuart Donaldson, in a car crash in 1993.

Hundreds of ‘skinhead’ Nazis from around Europe gathered to camp for two days and held a rave in a marquee, singing about Jews and performing Nazi salutes in response to the call of “Sieg Heil” from the stage.

One song’s chorus laments: “Once a nation, now we’re run by Jews” before declaring: “It’s time we drove out the traitors” — clear criminal incitement to racial hatred.

Blood and Honour organise a event every one or two months in the UK, but this was a major event at which approximately three quarters of attendees came from Europe. A witness told the BBC that there were “a lot of cars, a big bonfire and a lot of music…The one that I heard was a song about white power and this kept going on and on. It was very loud and distinctive.”

The event required a permit from East Cambridgeshire District Council and during the application process Cambridgeshire Constabulary were asked whether they had objections. They said they had none, as the organiser claimed that the event was in aid of Help for Heroes. Help for Heroes, which assists injured soldiers and their families said that the event had nothing to do with them, and that they would not accept donations from extremist organisations.

Now, a Cambridgeshire Constabulary spokesman has told Cambridge News that “We had been in contact with other forces about similar events and were aware of a possible right wing element” but that there was no “crime committed”, despite the brazen antisemitic slogans and Nazi salutes.

From the footage that has emerged, it is very clear that multiple criminal offences have been committed and Cambridgeshire Constabulary must immediately investigate.

blood-honour-2

Shomrim is supporting the victims of an incident today in which a man approached a Jewish school and shouted “Jews, dirty Jews, I’m Hitler, I’ll kill the Jews” amongst other racist abuse. The incident took place in Stamford Hill at approximately 15:10 today. The perpetrator is described as a black male. No arrests have been made and any witnesses should call the police on 101, quoting reference CAD 5609 06/10/16.

Self-described “Labour activist” Kevine Walcott has subjected a Channel 4 interviewer and the Chief Executive of the Holocaust Educational Trust to a tirade on Twitter, claiming that Jews should apologise for the slave trade.

The incident took place as Channel 4’s Cathy Newman interviewed disgraced Corbyn ally Jackie Walker over remarks she had made about Jews and the Holocaust, including that Jews were the “chief financiers” of the slave trade, a proposition described by the Legacies of British Slave Ownership project at University College, London as based on “no evidence whatsoever.”

Walcott assumed that Newman was Jewish and demanded in tweets that Newman personally apologise for the slave trade, writing: “you and jewish community has never apologise for your well documented role in the slave trade and its the greatest holocaust [all sic]”.

Walcott followed up with an unsolicited tweet to the Chief Executive of the Holocaust Educational Trust, Karen Pollock, calling her a “slave trade denyer [sic]” and “the greatest racist in world” and demanding that she “apologise for the slave trade”.

Various Twitter users said that they would be reporting Walcott to the Labour Party, however the Party now keeps the outcome of its disciplinary process secret, so it is unlikely that we will find out whether Walcott in fact suffers any consequences for her comments.

According to the definition of antisemitism, “accusing Jews as a people of being responsible for real or imagined wrongdoing committed by a single Jewish person or group, or even for acts committed by non-Jews” is antisemitic.

 

Disgraced Labour Party activist Jackie Walker has been removed from her post as Vice-Chair of influential pro-Corbyn campaigning group Momentum following remarks in which she criticised Holocaust Memorial Day and counter-terrorism security at Jewish schools.

In a statement, Momentum said that its Steering Committee had voted to remove Walker, but claimed that she had not said anything antisemitic. However, Walker remains a member of Momentum’s powerful Steeing Committee, and though she has reportedly been suspended from the Labour Party, the Party has refused to confirm her status, or the status of any future cases of antisemitism.

Walker has previously been suspended from the Labour Party and then readmitted after claiming that Jews were the “chief financiers” of the African slave trade, a proposition described by the Legacies of British Slave Ownership project at University College, London as based on “no evidence whatsoever.”

Jackie Walker is an antisemite.

She stated that Jews were “chief financiers” of the African slave trade, a decades-discredited canard by Louis Farrakhan described by the Legacies of British Slave Ownership project at University College, London as based on “no evidence whatsoever.”

Jackie Walker is antisemitic, not merely because we say so, but because she has breached the international definition of antisemitism by “making mendacious, demeaning or stereotypical allegations about Jews as such, or about the power of Jews as a collective…”

In addition, she has accused “Jews as a people of real or imagined wrongdoing committed by a single Jewish person or group, or even for acts committed by non-Jews” and projecting “sinister stereotypes and negative character traits”.

How this naked racist was readmitted to the Labour Party is a closed mystery, despite our enquiries. She has a close friendship with Jeremy Corbyn, who this month publicly embraced her on stage after her readmission, and sang her praises at a Jewish community centre husting. She also enjoyed support for her return from cheerleaders such as Owen Jones and a wide range of support elsewhere.

All who supported her are complicit, and a disgrace to this country’s traditions of tolerance.

She has subsequently, at Labour conference, diminished the significance of the Holocaust to Jews and questioned whether Jewish schools need special protection. In this she has pursued the modern antisemitic project of attempting to diminish Jewish suffering and remove Jews’ protection, so that they may once again be victimised. In an interview with Channel 4 News, she explicitly referred, twice, to Holocaust Memorial Day as a “celebration” perhaps revealing that she thinks that the Holocaust is something Jews benefit from in some way. The right-wing version is outright Holocaust denial, but on the Left, Holocaust denial is by a thousand cuts.

Walker further stated there was no definition of antisemitism she could “work with”, so what definitions does she use? Could it be the international definition of antisemitism quoted above, re-endorsed by 31 countries this year, including our own, as used everywhere from the UK College of Policing to the US Department of State? No. According to a statement she issued on Wednesday apologising “if offence has been caused”, it turns out she prefers a jokey internet sheet penned by a comedian.

Meanwhile, the Labour party sits on its hands and again fails to execute the justice that should have been instant. In addition, Walker now enjoys the protection of the Chakrabarti report, which conveniently allows justice to be done (perhaps) but not to be seen to be done.

Jewish New Year marks the beginning of the ten days of penitence, wherein Jews look inward to repent of their sins, in the hope they will be judged for good in the year to come. We strongly recommend to the Labour Party that they follow the same course, by repenting of their racism, adopting the international definition of antisemitism endorsed by their nation and police forces, and ensuring that justice is done and seen to be done.

The Labour Party will no longer reveal the outcomes of disciplinary cases, and will keep the public guessing as to whether Party members such as Jackie Walker are suspended, expelled or even punished at all. The revelation came as Labour began responding to questions about Jackie Walker with the line: “We don’t comment on individuals’ membership status.” The new approach appears to be the invention of Baroness Chakrabarti, who wrote a report whitewashing Labour’s antisemitism problem.

Despite being a qualified barrister, in endorsing a secret disciplinary process Baroness Chakrabarti has done away with a century of British jurisprudence. It has been a foundation of modern British justice that “Justice should be done and seen to be done.” In coining the phrase in 1924, Lord Chief Justice Hewart ruled in the case of R v Sussex Justices, Ex parte McCarthy ([1924] 1 KB 256, [1923] All ER Rep 233) that: “a long line of cases shows that it is not merely of some importance but is of fundamental importance that justice should not only be done, but should manifestly and undoubtedly be seen to be done.”

The Labour Party’s disciplinary process is not administered by the British justice system, but it should be bound by its key principles. There could be some justification for not commenting until a verdict has been reached, but concealing the outcome of disciplinary proceedings from public scrutiny removes any assurance that justice has been served and completely destroys the legitimacy of the disciplinary process.

The Labour Party has historically fought for a fair and open judicial process, yet today’s Labour Party will shield itself and the antisemites subject to disciplinary proceedings from scrutiny.

Labour MP Alison McGovern became visibly emotional today when a senior Labour activist claimed that a Jewish Labour MP had staged an antisemitic incident as a means to attack Jeremy Corbyn.

The activist who made the claim, Naomi Wimborne-Idrissi, is Vice Chair of the Chingford branch of the Chingford and Woodford Green Constituency Labour Party, and the founder of Jews for Boycotting Israeli Goods.

As Alison McGovern and others in the studio shook their heads in disgust, Ms Wimborne-Idrissi alleged that Ruth Smeeth, a Jewish Labour MP, had used an antisemitic incident to “completely undermine the launch of a really important report about racism”, referring to Baroness Chakrabarti’s whitewash report into antisemitism in the Labour Party. Ms Wimborne-Idrissi said that Ms Smeeth was clearly motivated to concoct the incident because she “is against Corbyn, against his whole Socialist vision”.

Continuing, Ms Wimborne-Idrissi claimed that the Jewish MP’s supposed ruse had worked: “Did anybody know about racism after the release of that report? No they didn’t. All they knew was that an angry Jewish MP had run out of the room. That’s all they knew…The Chakrabarti Commission has been undermined at every turn by people like Ruth Smeeth and Louise Ellman [another Jewish Labour MP] and others like them who have a political agenda. The question of antisemitism is being used as a weapon in a political battle.”

The incident came as Jeremy Corbyn closed the Labour Party Conference with a promise to fight antisemitism with his “every breath”.

The conference has been awash with antisemitic incidents which we are yet to see met with any kind of disciplinary action.

The only Labour Councillor in Shepway, Claire Jeffrey, has left the Labour Party, saying: “As a Jew, I can’t stay in a party that tolerates antisemitism.” Shepway District Council leader David Monk added: “She finds the party she knew and loved is no longer there.”

Later, writing on the Facebook page of Sussex Friends of Israel, Councillor Jeffrey, who represents East Folkestone, commented: “I just cannot stay in a party that tolerates antisemitism and terrorists…Sadly Jews are just not welcome in Corbyn’s Labour. It has been really hard but I had to be true to myself and my beliefs.” Asked by other Facebook users why her Twitter profile had disappeared, she wrote: “I deactivated my Twitter temporarily because I am receiving all sorts of abuse and threats.”

Earlier this week, Lord Parry Mitchell resigned from the Labour Party for the same reason, saying that the leadership of the Labour Party “flirts with antisemitism”.

Dozens of student leaders from around the UK have signed an open letter condemning antisemitism within the National Union of Students (NUS).

The letter condemns the leadership of NUS, but the specific criticism is all aimed at the actions of Malia Bouattia, the new President NUS. In the letter, the student leaders write: “Over the past 6 months, NUS’ Leadership has rightly come under increased scrutiny for its attitude towards Jewish students. They have been held to account for undermining Jewish students’ ability to elect their own representatives, and challenged on antisemitic rhetoric.”

The letter said that “Time and time again Jewish students have not felt safe participating in our national movement, because of the actions and rhetoric of leadership of NUS.” The letter ended with a plea to Jewish students not to feel isolated, and the student leaders even apologised to Jewish students for what had been done in the name of NUS: “We, the undersigned, stand with Jewish students in their right to feel represented, safe and welcome in participating in NUS’ democracy. We must listen to Jewish students when they say something is antisemitic. We apologise for anything or anyone that would make you feel otherwise, and promise to respect, champion and listen to your concerns. The student movement and NUS is absolutely a place for you.”

NUS has been plagued by students’ unions disaffiliating from the national union over antisemitism and other issues.

Fresh from her reinstatement to the party, following her suspension for claiming that Jews were behind the slave trade, Vice Chair of Momentum Jackie Walker has told delegates at the Labour Party Conference that Holocaust Memorial Day is not inclusive enough and that Jewish schools do not need special security.

In response to another delegate, she said that Holocaust Memorial Day should be “open to all peoples who’ve experienced Holocaust” and as delegates angrily heckled her, she told the room: “I was a bit concerned…at your suggestions that the Jewish community is under such threat that they have to use security in all its buildings…I have a grandson, he is a year old. There is security in his nursery and every school has security now. It’s not because I’m frightened or his parents are frightened that he is going to be attacked.” On Monday she said that antisemitism was being “exaggerated” to “undermine Jeremy”.

It is hard to draw any conclusion from her latest outburst other than that she thinks that Holocaust education should focus less on antisemitism, and that the brutal murder of Jews around Europe, including the shooting of Jewish schoolchildren in Toulouse four years ago by Islamist terrorist Mohammed Merah, is somehow not linked to antisemitism.

Jackie Walker is in denial about antisemitism at the same time as perpetrating it. It is beyond disgraceful that she was readmitted to the Labour Party and remains Vice Chair of Momentum.

Shortly after her outburst, Jeremy Corbyn closed the Labour Party Conference with a promise to fight antisemitism with his “every breath” but this is just the latest in a string of incidents involving Jackie Walker. What is there to investigate? How many more chances will she be given? Enough is enough. Jackie Walker must be expelled from the Labour Party and Momentum immediately and condemned in the strongest possible terms.

Until Labour matches its rhetoric with action, we remain of the view that the Labour Party is not safe for Jews.

A poll of 1,857 British Jewish adults by Campaign Against Antisemitism has found that 87% of British Jews believe that the Labour Party is too tolerant of antisemites in its ranks. Most other parties also fared badly, with 35-48% of British Jews believing that they harboured antisemites. It was only the Conservative Party which scored better, with 12% of British Jews criticising the way that the party handles cases of antisemitism.

The polling was conducted as part of CAA’s Antisemitism Barometer study which will be released in full next year.

Respondents were asked: “Do you feel that any political parties are too tolerant of antisemitism among their MPs, members and supporters?” The results were as follows:

Labour Party: 87%
Conservative Party: 12%
Liberal Democrat Party: 35%
UK Independence Party (UKIP): 43%
Green Party: 48%
Scottish National Party (SNP): 39%
None of the above: 2%
Don’t know: 4%

The results constitute a stark warning over the rise of antisemitism in left-wing political parties. The shift is particularly notable because the Labour Party and left-wing parties were once responsible for leading the fight against racism, whereas this polling shows that British Jews now consider them to be the most tolerant of antisemitism.

Whereas each of the parties concerned has strong policies against racism, the figures show that the Jewish community does not believe that those policies are implemented firmly when it comes to antisemitism. This is likely to be due to a series of failures to deal with individual incidents, such as those involving Labour’s Sir Gerald Kaufman, and the Liberal Democrats’ Baroness Tonge.

It is important to note that there is no evidence that parties’ supporters favour a soft approach to antisemitism. The failure to deal robustly with antisemitism is more likely to be a result of a failure to recognise and understand the many guises of modern antisemitism.

The two major right-wing parties fared very differently. UKIP, which has had several high-profile problems with racism, was felt by 43% of British Jews to tolerate antisemitism in its ranks. Of particular note is that UKIP was rated badly by half as many British Jews as Labour, which has strong roots in the anti-racist movement. In contrast, 12% of British Jews — the lowest of any party — found the Conservatives’ treatment of antisemites to be problematic.

In response to the rise of antisemitism in political parties, CAA is launching its manifesto for fighting antisemitism in political parties. It calls on parties to commit to three principles: parties should adopt the ‘international’ definition of antisemitism used by the College of Policing; they should investigate antisemitism swiftly and transparently; and they should treat antisemitism by party members in public office particularly severely.

 

The Labour Party’s National Executive Committee has decided that the Labour Party Conference should not vote on new rules that would enable the party to more easily expel antisemitic members.

The Party has been plagued by an ongoing antisemitism crisis which is being excruciatingly badly handled by the Party’s institutions and leadership. Campaign Against Antisemitism has said that “the Labour Party is no longer a safe place for British Jews.”

Responding to the decision in a speech to delegates at the Labour Party Conference, the Jewish Labour Movement’s Mike Katz said that he felt “beyond disappointed”. As he told the delegates that the Jewish Labour Movement would not be “going anywhere” he was met with contrasting open heckling and a standing ovation. He told the delegates that their applause “meant a lot” to the whole Jewish community.

The Labour Party has for some time made loud promises about tackling antisemitism and it is well past time that those promises were acted upon. Applause is very welcome, but it is utterly meaningless whilst the Party fails to act against antisemitism. We did not consider Labour’s proposed rule changes to be adequate as they do not include the definition of antisemitism, but for the discussion of even those deficient rule changes to be postponed by a year is the surest possible indication of the urgency with which the Labour Party intends to address its antisemitism problem.

In a powerful essay for the Holocaust Educational Trust, the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, has decried the tendency in society to be dismissive of antisemitism, writing: “Antisemitism is at the heart of racism. Yet, because it is so deeply entrenched in our thought and culture, it is often ignored and dismissed.”

Showing a strong grasp of the potent ability of antisemitism to mutate, he wrote: “It latches onto a variety of different issues: financial inequality, wars and depressions, education, politics and government, grave international issues, such as the rights of Israelis and Palestinians, and interfaith tensions. It twists them to its own ends, with the perverted and absurd argument that a small group runs or plots against our society and manipulates international affairs.”

The Archbishop also had strong words about the role of the Church of England in the spread of antisemitism, writing: “It is a shameful truth that, through its theological teachings, the church, which should have offered an antidote, compounded the spread of this virus.”

As patron of the Council of Christians and Jews, the Archbishop has warm relations with the Jewish community. In his essay he listed some of the accomplishments of British Jews and called on society to act against antisemitism for the good of all of society: “The goal is ambitious but attainable: if we eliminate antisemitism we take a huge step in undermining the whole tradition of racism in our society.”

Universities are incredibly diverse places, with a wide array of cultures and nations represented on campus. This diversity has led to a new-found level of respect and tolerance in which students of all backgrounds can flourish. This has not been the case for Jewish students.

While ‘safe spaces’ have been instituted to protect minority students, Jewish students have found that their rights are not respected; they have found themselves subject to hostility and aggression with examples of rising antisemitism across the country from Oxford University Labour Club to Birmingham to York to Edinburgh and many more, antisemitic incidents are becoming increasingly concerning. This is epitomised by NUS and the problems surrounding their leadership.

Antisemitism, it seems, is given free reign on campus with little intervention by campus authorities or student representatives.

It is time for students to stand up and do the job that those in positions of responsibility are failing to do: to push antisemitism off campus. Through the Campaign Against Antisemitism’s three-pronged approach of monitoring, exposing and educating we aim to fight back against hate within universities.

If you are a student and are concerned by the tolerance and prevalence of antisemitism on campus, you can join our Monitoring team to track antisemitic incidents on your campus, become a contributor to our online news source Everyday Antisemitism which publicises antisemitic incidents, or join our Outreach and Education team and fight the ignorance and hate that lies at the root of antisemitism.

To join up, visit antisemitism.uk/campus.

The Liberal Democrat Party has written to people who complained about remarks by Baroness Tonge to tell them that it was “offensive” for her to have held British Jews accountable for the perceived actions of the State of Israel, but that her remarks “still fall short of being racist”.

According to the definition of antisemitism, “holding Jews collectively responsible for actions of the state of Israel” is antisemitic.

Baroness Tonge — who was forced to resign the Liberal Democrat whip in the House of Lords over antisemitism, but still remains a member of the main Party — made a speech in July calling on “Jewish faith leaders in the United Kingdom publicly to condemn settlement building by Israel and to make clear their support for universal human rights.” Tonge also claimed that Palestinian terrorist groups have a “justified grudge” against Israel, effectively defending the terrorism that is aimed at Jewish people in Israel and around the world by Hamas, Islamic Jihad and other terrorist organisations. She had previously called for an investigation into supposed Israeli harvesting of human organs, which is the modern-day incarnation of the mediaeval antisemitic blood libel.

When we called on our supporters to complain to the Liberal Democrat Party, the Party bizarrely responded that they would investigate if they received complaints. We then confirmed that our complaint was already a complaint and heard nothing more. Meanwhile Baroness Tonge wrote a misleading letter to The Independent claiming that Campaign Against Antisemitism was in fact an organisation which secretly opposed organ donation.

Today, minutes after we had complained about Liberal Democrat Matthew Gordon Banks’ outburst on Twitter that Jews have control over Party leader Tim Farron, we received an e-mail regarding Baroness Tonge from Jeanne Tarrant, Pastoral Care Officer for the Liberal Democrats.

Ms Tarrant wrote: “We are a liberal party that places immense value on freedom of speech. That includes the freedom to criticise in the strongest terms the actions of states and governments and the causal effects of their policies. However, we also believe we must be very alert to instances where Liberal Democrats cross that line from articulating views that may well be genuinely and passionately held, but offensive, to, in the context of Israel and Palestine, using language or making arguments that are antisemitic. Having reviewed your complaint, our view is that an opinion can be controversial – and even offensive – but still fall short of being racist. Any desire not to offend also needs to be balanced against the right to criticise in the strongest terms the actions of states and governments which is what was happened on this occasion in her House of Lords speech.”

If you believe that Ms Tarrant is wrong, and that she should be applying the definition of antisemitism which prohibits “holding Jews collectively responsible for actions of the state of Israel” then please e-mail her at jeanne.tarrant@libdems.org.uk. You may wish to copy Tim Farron at tim.farron@libdems.org.uk.

Jackie Walker, the Vice-Chair of Momentum, the pro-Corbyn caucus within the Labour Party, has reportedly claimed that antisemitism is being “exaggerated” and that the “aim of such allegations is to undermine Jeremy [Corbyn]”.

Walker was suspended and then readmitted to the Labour Party after claiming that Jews were the “chief financiers of the sugar and slave trade” and suggesting that Jews murdered during the Holocaust were “victims to some extent through choice”.

According to the definition of antisemitism, it is antisemitic to accuse Jews of an orchestrated conspiracy designed to subvert political processes, for example by inventing or exaggerating antisemitism en masse as a means by which to weaken a political leader.

Flyers distributed at the Labour Party Conference have called for the expulsion of the Jewish Labour Movement from the Party. The flyers charge that the Jewish affiliate of the Labour Party is using trumped up accusations of antisemitism as a cynical ploy to attack Jeremy Corbyn, motivated by an overriding loyalty to “a foreign power, Israel.” The flyers end a call for the Jewish Labour Movement to be expelled from the Party.

According to the definition of antisemitism, it is antisemitic to allege that Jews are engaged in a conspiracy to subvert political processes, and to accuse Jews of an overriding loyalty to Israel which causes them to act against the interests of their countrymen.

The flyer was circulated by a group calling itself the International Jewish Anti-Zionist Network, whose UK chapter is primarily engaged in trying to stop the UK Jewish Film Festival from taking place, according to its website.

The Jewish Labour Movement has also held an event against antisemitism in a pub next to the Labour Party Conference at which Baroness Shami Chakrabarti was invited to speak.

Matthew Gordon Banks, a senior Liberal Democrat adviser who defected to the Party after losing his seat as a Conservative MP, has decried Jewish financial control over Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron. He reportedly tweeted: “What fascinates me is that Farron’s leadership campaign was organised and funded by London Jews” and then added: “I tried to work with them. Very difficult.”

Facing a backlash on social media, the former MP for Southport explained that he was “right” and that “real pressure” had been put on him by Jews when he was an MP, claiming that the religion of the donors to a campaign “affects policy”.

According to the definition of antisemitism, it is antisemitic to make “stereotypical allegations about Jews as such or the power of Jews as collective”.

You may wish to write to the leader of the Liberal Democrat Party, Tim Farron MP, at tim.farron@libdems.org.uk, copying Jeanne Tarrant, Pastoral Care Officer at jeanne.tarrant@libdems.org.uk.

In July, we complained that Baroness Jenny Tonge, who is a member of the Liberal Democrat Party despite having been expelled from the Party in the House of Lords over antisemitism, had declared that British Jews had a special duty to criticise Israel. The Liberal Democrat Party responded to complaints by saying that they would investigate if they received complaints, and then began ignoring e-mails.

Lord Parry Mitchell has announced his resignation from the Labour Party in an anguished article in the Huffington Post, saying that the Party “flirts with antisemitism”.

Writing that he felt forced to “divorce” his party, Lord Mitchell said that he was “devastated”. Lord Mitchell cited the re-election of Jeremy Corbyn as well as Shami Chakrabarti’s whitewash of a report into antisemitism in the party and Corbyn’s ennoblement of Chakrabarti as the triggers for his resignation.

Lord Mitchell concluded:

“For me it was the Chakrabarti Report on antisemitism in the Labour Party that finally made me snap. I met Shami whilst she was preparing her report (ironically sitting in the sun on the Terrace at the House of Lords), we had a pleasant enough conversation and when we parted I had high hopes that she would be hard hitting, but she wasn’t, it was an anaemic whitewash. Corbyn then offering her a peerage was to me the final indignity.

“I will never forget how at the launch of Shami’s report, Corbyn stood by when a Momentum thug hurled a tirade of invective against Ruth Smeeth MP, so abusive that she left in tears. It was masterful inaction: Corbyn who should have protected her, joked with a colleague and did nothing.

“After a gut-wrenching summer my choice is now clear. How can I, a Jew and a Zionist, remain in a party where the leadership is so clearly hostile to Israel (even to its very existence) and which also flirts with antisemitism? In the end it was an easy decision, but that makes it none the less painful.”

Lord Mitchell was making good on a promise to resign if Jeremy Corbyn was re-elected, which was published in The Times.

Jeremy Corbyn was today re-elected by Labour members to lead the Labour Party. Yesterday, Campaign Against Antisemitism instigated disciplinary proceedings against Jeremy Corbyn over his promotion of the lie that accusations of antisemitism are dishonest and nefarious.

Reacting to the election result, Gideon Falter, Chairman of Campaign Against Antisemitism said: “The evidence shows that Jeremy Corbyn has repeatedly promoted the lie that Jewish accusations of antisemitism are dishonest and motivated by hidden agendas. Though notable Labour members have struggled bravely to stem the tide, the Labour Party is no longer a safe place for British Jews. We require the Party to adopt and firmly and transparently apply the international definition of antisemitism to the many outstanding cases amongst its members, including the disciplinary complaint that we have now instigated against Jeremy Corbyn. Though we are an apolitical organisation, we are today speaking out to say that the Labour Party now does more to normalise racism than to oppose it.”

Campaign Against Antisemitism has today filed a disciplinary complaint against Jeremy Corbyn. The complaint was made in a letter to Tom Watson, Deputy Leader of the Labour Party, for presentation to the Party’s National Executive Committee.

The allegation that Jews lie and deceive in order to further hidden agendas is an age-old antisemitic trope. It has now been manifestly deployed by Mr Corbyn in his leadership campaign video. It falls under the definition of antisemitism used by decent nations around the world — including our own — by “making mendacious…allegations about Jews”.

Although Mr Corbyn and his allies have a long history of association with antisemites, it was not until April 5th this year that he crossed the line and made an antisemitic statement. At that point, when his brother, Piers Corbyn, characterised the antisemitic abuse complained of by Jewish MP Louise Ellman as a politically motivated “absurd” attack on his brother, Jeremy Corbyn agreed, saying his brother “was not wrong”. This, at a time when Campaign Against Antisemitism, the Chief Rabbi and others concerned with the welfare of British Jews had all called for firm action to excise the antisemitism in Labour’s ranks.

What ensued over the following months was an institutionalising of the trope by senior Party figures under Mr Corbyn’s leadership. On May 1st, Diane Abbott MP stated on the Andrew Marr Show that any accusations of antisemitism in Labour were “a smear”, while Len McCluskey declared that the row had been “got up” by Mr Corbyn’s enemies. Ken Livingstone and Rupa Huq MP averred. The message was heeded: in a YouGov Poll a few days later, 49% of Labour members were in agreement.

On the 30th of June, 2016 Ruth Smeeth MP suffered antisemitic abuse at the launch of Baroness Chakrabarti’s whitewash report into antisemitism in the Party. Mr Corbyn was unmoved, failed to intervene and moreover was filmed talking in very familiar terms with the perpetrator after the incident. Again, the signal sent to the public was clear; Ms Smeeth subsequently received 20,000 mostly antisemitic abusive messages in the next twenty-four hours, including death threats. She now requires police protection and a bodyguard to attend the Labour Party conference.

The recent leadership hustings were characterised by Mr Corbyn’s supporters’ groans of ennui whenever Owen Smith raised the subject of antisemitism. Any person truly opposed to racism would have taken action to counter this chilling normalisation of antisemitism by discrediting its victims, but instead Mr Corbyn has compounded it.

This week, Mr Corbyn’s personal Facebook and Twitter accounts released a video featuring supporters declaring they were “tired of hearing” about antisemitism, characterising the Jewish community’s complaints as ‘rubbish’ — physically and metaphorically — to be tossed onto the floor. In an admission of guilt, the video has been withdrawn, but by then it had been viewed and endorsed over 200,000 times, and there has been no rebuttal by Mr Corbyn.

As a result of these accumulated acts committed by Mr Corbyn himself or under his direct leadership, Campaign Against Antisemitism has today filed a complaint with the Labour Party’s National Executive Committee. We charge that Mr Corbyn has breached the Party’s Conditions of Membership as set out in Chapter 2, Clause I (8) of the Party’s Rule Book by committing acts grossly detrimental to the Party in characterising Jewish people as dissembling and dishonest in their reporting of antisemitism, and by using the influence and prestige of his office to disseminate and normalise that lie, contrary to Chapter I, Clause IV (2) (B) of the Party’s Constitutional Rules.

Our system of justice depends on our institutions having adequate rules, which must be enforced, and seen to be enforced. Under Mr Corbyn, the Labour Party that was once a pioneer in the fight against racism, has made itself deaf to Jews.

Labour’s institutions have failed to act decisively against Sir Gerald Kaufman MP, Ken Livingstone and countless others. It is now high time that the Party acted to preserve its values, and to defend the much-abused Jewish community against the antisemitic lie promoted by Mr Corbyn that our complaints of antisemitism are hollow and motivated by hidden agendas.

The Labour Party has refused to take any action against a Councillor who shared an antisemitic video produced by a former Grand Wizard of the Ku Klax Klan. Birmingham Councillor Zafar Iqbal Said claimed that he had “no idea” how the video came to be posted on his Facebook timeline. According to the Birmingham Mail, the video, entitled “CNN , Goldman Sachs and the Zio Matrix”, was captioned “this video reveals how the Zionist Matrix of Power controls Media, Politics and Banking”.

A Labour Party spokesman told the JC that no action would be taken as, without any investigation, the Party had accepted Councillor Said’s explanation that the video appeared from nowhere, saying: “Councillor Iqbal has apologised, we accept his explanation of what happened and we have reminded him of his responsibilities as a Labour councillor.”

The video is unquestionably antisemitic, using the antisemitic term “Zio” and alleging Jewish or “Zionist” control over banking.

Councillor Said was reportedly appointed Justice of Peace in Solihull Magistrates Court in 2007 and awarded an MBE in 2008 for services to education and the community. In a statement, he told the Birmingham Mail: “I have no recollection of sharing this video and have no idea how it was shared on my Facebook page. Anyone that interacts with me on social media knows that I would never knowingly share any racist, abusive or antisemitic content. Nevertheless — I accept that this content was for a period active on my Facebook page and it is now been deleted. I know that this type of content could cause deep offence and I apologise to anyone who was affected by seeing this material. There is no place for antisemitism in the Labour Party or in our society — and I will continue to work closely with groups of all faiths in Birmingham against racism and prejudice.”

The failure of the Labour Party to investigate this incident properly is a sad reflection of the fact that the Party is increasingly deaf to Jews. Earlier this week, Jeremy Corbyn’s Facebook and Twitter accounts released a video about things that his supporters are “tired of hearing”. The video presented each topic on a piece of paper. When antisemitism came up, it was tossed to the floor like rubbish, and the video claimed that accusations of antisemitism were being made by people who are “losing the political argument”.

An 11-year-old Jewish boy has escaped shaken but unhurt after a gang of teenagers surrounded him on a London street and forced him to remove his kippah (Jewish skullcap). According to Shomrim, the Jewish neighbourhood watch patrol, the boy was approached by at least four black teenagers who told him that unless he removed the kippah, they would beat him. The boy refused to comply and instead managed to escape and run home.

The incident occurred on Leaside Road in Hackney. Any witnesses should call the Metropolitan Police Service on 101 or Shomrim on 0300 999 0123.

A man has been convicted of racially aggravated intentional harassment, alarm or distress after shouting antisemitic abuse at members of Shomrim, London’s Jewish neighbourhood watch patrol.

The incident took place on 5th November 2015 when volunteers from Shomrim were called to a burglary. Whilst they assisted the Muslim victim, Mark Zahra saw the scene and assumed that Shomrim were reporting the Muslim victim to the police and shouted at Shomrim’s volunteers: “F***ing Jewish scum. Why do you keep calling them [the police], because he’s Muslim?”

Last Thursday, following testimony by Shomrim’s volunteers, Mark Zahra was convicted at Wood Green Crown Court of racially aggravated intentional harassment alarm or distress under section 4A of the Public Order Act (see the relevant part of our guide to the Law of Antisemitism).

The sentence was a 12-month Community Order and a curfew for 4 months.

Cases of antisemitism are rarely prosecuted and Shomrim’s swift action and perseverance is to be applauded. In 2015, the Crown Prosecution Service prosecuted 15,442 cases of hate crime, but Campaign Against Antisemitism, Shomrim and CST are aware of only twelve prosecutions for antisemitic hate crime, despite the 26% rise in antisemitic hate crime during 2015, which made it the worst year on record.

The Labour Party’s annual conference is to begin this year with a rally “against racism and antisemitism” — a rally intended to “heal” deep rifts in the Party, despite being addressed by one of Labour’s most divisive politicians, the newly ennobled Baroness Chakrabarti.

The Labour Party under Jeremy Corbyn has conducted brisk trade in statements condemning “racism and antisemitism” whilst simultaneously alienating Jews and tolerating brazen antisemites. What makes this latest development so astonishing, is that it is the Jewish Labour Movement, an affiliate of the Labour Party of nearly a century’s standing, which has invited Shami Chakrabarti to speak at their the rally, to be held in a pub near the conference.

The Jewish Labour Movement says the purpose of the rally is to “heal” and “redouble the effort to ensure antisemitism and racism have no place within [Labour]” — a stance that begs the question as to how any such healing can be possible when the wounds are wide open, with new injuries being opened up almost daily?

The Labour Party has become a political home of antisemitism and the Jewish Labour Movement has fought hard to save their Party from its grasp. Nothing has undermined that effort more than Shami Chakrabarti’s whitewash of a report which cleared the Party of antisemitism, a feat for which she was rewarded by ennoblement by Jeremy Corbyn to the very institution that he promised never to promote anyone to.

As a matter of policy we do not comment on the work of other organisations engaged in the fight against antisemitism, but in this case we must make an exception. The Jewish Labour Movement’s decision to invite Shami Chakrabarti to address a rally against antisemitism is misjudged to the point of surrealism. Indeed, the very idea that it is possible to hold a rally in a pub to heal antisemitism in the Labour Party is absurd because the Labour Party, under the leadership of Jeremy Corbyn, continues to deny that its antisemitism problem even exists. That is perhaps why the Jewish Labour Movement’s own poll of its members found that only 4% of them back Jeremy Corbyn in the current leadership election.

When antisemitism reaches the levels it now has within the Labour Party, the only effective strategy is to stand up and defy it with dignity.

Campaign Against Antisemitism Chairman Gideon Falter’s spoke at the Henry Jackson Society’s event in the House of Commons on “Europe in crisis — a shattered haven”. The event was held on 6th September 2016 in Committee Room 14 of the House of Commons. Matthew Offord MP chaired the evening which began with the documentary “Europe in crisis — a shattered haven” followed by speeches by Melanie Phillips, Gideon Falter and Tom Wilson.

Roisin Wood, Director of Kick It Out, will be speaking about antisemitism in football on 6th October at JW3, a Jewish cultural centre in London. It will be a good opportunity to ask Ms Wood about what Kick It Out is doing to stamp out antisemitism at football grounds.

Ms Wood will be appearing on a panel discussing antisemitism organised by Action Against Discrimination’s Chairman, Jonathan Metliss. Other panellists include football journalists Henry Winter and Anthony Clavane,as well as Jewish footballer Joe Jacobson and the Jewish Chairman of Brighton & Hove Albion FC, Tony Bloom.

The event will be held on 6th October at JW3. Tickets must be booked in advance.

Yesterday, Ken Livingstone returned to Vanessa Feltz’s show to repeat his bizarre, offensive claims first made in April, about Hitler’s relationship with Zionism. This, notwithstanding the fact that his claims had been ridiculed and torn to shreds by credible historians in the interim. He went as far as to say that since he made the claims “I couldn’t walk down the street for people stopping me and saying ‘We know what you said is true.’”

Ken Livingstone’s absurd opinions are not themselves the issue. British Jews are, sadly, accustomed to all sorts of accusations, from the notion that Rothschilds’ banks control the economy, to the idea (however laughable) that Jewish lizards control the planet from a base on the moon. Such conspiracy theories should be opposed and rationally discredited, but they will sadly always persist.

What matters in this case is the issue of political leadership: because it is only by poor, malicious or a deliberately indulgent leadership that such mendaciousness can flourish and gain currency in a population, particularly when that populace is casting around for a scapegoat for their economic or other ills.

The Labour Party is now rapidly becoming the political home of antisemites. From rampant antisemitism at Oxford University Labour Club, through to the suppression of Baroness Royall’s report, to Shami Chakrabarti’s whitewash report at the launch of which antisemitism took place, its senior leadership characterising allegations of antisemitism as Jewish lies, to the obscene 25,000 abusive messages sent to a Jewish MP for opposing the antisemitic abuse she has received, the onward march of an institution failing to act rather is chilling.

What is shocking is not that Ken Livingstone is repeating his claims, but that in post-war Labour a former close colleague of its leader has been allowed to stay a member long enough to feel emboldened and repeat this garbage.

Labour has gone from being a pioneering force against racism to being the favoured political home of antisemites. We did not think that the situation could get worse after Jeremy Corbyn rewarded Shami Chakrabarti with a peerage for her whitewash of an investigation into antisemitism in Labour, but now we are hearing that Labour may have prejudiced a police investigation into one of its MPs.

The Daily Mail has reported that Naz Shah, who was suspended from the Labour Party over antisemitic social media posts, was readmitted to the Party despite being under active police investigation. It took considerable pressure for Jeremy Corbyn to suspend Naz Shah, who has admitted the antisemitic nature of her comments and apologised for them.

If it is true that there is an ongoing police investigation into antisemitic hate crime allegedly committed by Naz Shah and Labour was aware of it but decided to end her suspension before the police investigation had concluded, then this is yet further evidence of the Party’s abject failure to grasp its antisemitism problem.

In recent months we have seen Labour operate a revolving door of suspensions and readmissions for some of its antisemitic members and this latest revelation, if true, would be another clear indicator that the Party’s disciplinary process is being distorted for political effect.

On Tuesday, CAA’s Chairman, Gideon Falter, will speak on a panel alongside journalist and author Melanie Phillips, and the Henry Jackson Society’s Tom Wilson, at a public event in Parliament on the subject of “Europe in Crisis — a Shattered Haven”.

The event will begin with the screening of a short documentary on rising antisemitism and extremism across Europe, following which the panel will discuss developments, including the murder of Jewish citizens in multiple terrorist attacks in France, Belgium and Denmark.

To book a free place, e-mail rsvp@henryjacksonsociety.org including your full name, the names of any guests, and any affiliations. The event begins at 18:00 on Tuesday in Committee Room 14 in the House of Commons. More details can be found on the Henry Jackson Society’s website.

Our 2016 survey of British Jews is about to close. The survey measures the effects of antisemitism on Jews in the UK. If you have not already responded, this is your last chance to take part in our anonymous, three-minute survey at https://antisemitism.uk/survey/. Once completed, please do share the link with others so we have a wide and large sample of British Jewry.

Today the Jewish MP, Ruth Smeeth, revealed that she has received 25,000-odd pieces of abuse following the launch of Shami Chakrabarti’s report on antisemitism in the Labour Party. Ms Smeeth said that 20,000 abusive messages were received in the first twelve hours after the launch event at which she herself received antisemitic abuse from a Momentum member who subsequently left joking with a smiling Jeremy Corbyn. Ms Smeeth was clear that the abusers were acting in the name of Jeremy Corbyn. Following the launch, Ms Smeeth declared that the Labour Party under Jeremy Corbyn “cannot be a safe space for British Jews” and called on him to resign.

Asked on the Victoria Derbyshire programme for examples of the abuse, Ms Smeeth said that one message read: “The gallows would be a fine place for this dyke piece of Yid s*** to swing from,” adding that this was “one of the worst, not the worst” of the abuse. She said that such abuse had become “seemingly acceptable” and that although she was sure Jeremy Corbyn would condemn it, this was insufficient, and called again for firmer action.

After Young Labour’s report into Oxford Antisemitism was succeeded by the suppression of Baroness Royall’s report, it could only be imagined that Chakrabarti’s whitewash represented the one of the lowest points for Jews in this country in recent decades. However, for tens of thousands of individual messages of abuse to be levelled at a Jewish MP after she herself did nothing more than protest clear and public antisemitism, represents the current level of virulent mob antisemitism. What makes it so dangerous is that this is not being fomented by fringe fascists, but by our own polity.

We call for politicians of all parties, and our public institutions to intervene as powerfully as they can to protect the Jews of this country from a growing racist movement that is clearly out of control.

We are conducting a snapshot survey of British Jews to measure the effects of antisemitism in the UK. Please take part in this anonymous, three-minute survey at https://antisemitism.uk/survey/ and share the link with others so we have a wide and large sample of British Jewry. The survey will only be live for a short time, so please complete it now.

Since its establishment two years ago, Campaign Against Antisemitism has been dedicated to exposing and countering antisemitism through education and zero-tolerance enforcement of the law. Everything we have achieved has been accomplished by our dedicated team of volunteers.

We are proud of what we have achieved without a single member of staff, but the time has come to hire our first part-time employee to run our long-term programmes.

We welcome Ben, our Programme Manager. Binyomin has volunteered with us for over a year and passionately believes that it is possible to turn the rising tide of antisemitism through raising awareness of the problem, education and the firmest possible enforcement of the law. He has quickly established himself as a key member of our team, developing our long-term programmes and working with our volunteer team to greatly improve our capabilities.

We also welcome Stephen Silverman to the Board of Trustees, following his election by our volunteers to the new post of Director of Investigations and Enforcement. Stephen and his team work closely with police forces around the country, the Crown Prosecution Service and regulatory bodies to ensure that antisemitism is detected, investigated and punished with the full force of the law.

We must also say farewell to two of the people who have helped lead Campaign Against Antisemitism and who are now standing down. Jonathan Sacerdoti has acted as Director of Communications since our establishment, building Campaign Against Antisemitism’s strong voice against antisemitism, and for the past year and a half Angela Levin has been our Director of Mobilisation, putting in place an extremely talented and committed team of volunteers.

Lastly, Nathan Hopstein, who has been an integral member of the Campaign Against Antisemitism team since our establishment two years ago, has moved into the new position of Director of Organisation and Finance, ensuring that we put in place the systems and support that our volunteers need, and that our charity complies strictly with regulatory and financial requirements.

Gideon Falter, Chairman of Campaign Against Antisemitism said: “Campaign Against Antisemitism owes a great deal to Jonathan and Angela. We have accomplished so much together and the Board of Trustees wishes them every success in their professional work. Jonathan has expertly developed our voice in the media, and Angela has established our effective teams of specialist volunteers. They leave our charity stronger than ever, and on that note we are extremely pleased to have secured the talents of Binyomin and Stephen. Binyomin has worked closely with Angela for over a year as a volunteer and in his capacity as Programme Manager we are already witnessing the implementation of ambitious long-term programmes. I also welcome Stephen, one of our longstanding volunteers, to the Board of Trustees, having been elected by the Investigations and Enforcement team to lead their vital work.”

Stephen Silverman, Director of Investigations and Enforcement said: “I became a volunteer with Campaign Against Antisemitism because I believe passionately that the unprecedented rise of antisemitism in Britain in recent years is a threat not only to Britain’s Jews but also to the very values of the country itself. We have reached a dangerous tipping point where antisemitic opinions — sometimes disguised as political discourse but often not — are on the the verge of becoming normalised on social media, in public life and on university campuses. Last year’s 51% increase in violent attacks on Jews shows the extent to which antisemites have become emboldened. Our Investigations and Enforcement team will continue work with the the police, regulators and employers to secure justice against antisemites, and where necessary we will hold the authorities to account.”

Jonathan Sacerdoti said: ”After two years heading up the media strategy for Campaign Against Antisemitism, it is with some sadness that I announce my resignation. Campaign Against Antisemitism was born out of a need for a strong voice opposing antisemitism in the UK and beyond, at a time when levels of antisemitism and attacks on Jewish people have been increasing across Europe. I feel that I and our team of volunteers have exceeded all expectations in getting antisemitism recognised more widely on the national agenda, and while there is still much to be done, I feel it is time for me to move on and concentrate on my full time journalistic career. Having established the voice of the Campaign Against Antisemitism across national and international media outlets, I know that media and political discussion of this important issue will continue, and I wish the rest of the team success in their continued work.”

Campaign Against Antisemitism has responded to a claim in The Guardian for the second time claiming that we are a pawn of the Israeli government.

The claim was first made in 2015, when The Guardian printed a letter alleging that antisemitism in Britain was being exaggerated and that “the CAA was set up last summer, not to fight antisemitism but to counter rising criticism of Israel’s murderous assault on Gaza.” At the time, CAA Chairman Gideon Falter responded with a letter setting out the facts of rising antisemitism, and asking: “Why can some of your readers not accept the facts for what they are and address the very real problem of antisemitism, rather than supposing in spite of the evidence that it is a fiction, or that it does exist but would cease to if Jews supported Israel less? Jewish concerns must not be silenced by conspiracy theorists railing about Israel.”

On Tuesday, we were accused of being “pro-Israel lobbyists” in The Guardian again, this time because we have dared to condemn Jeremy Corbyn’s peerage for Shami Chakrabarti in return for her whitewash report clearing him and the party of rampant antisemitism.

Both claims were made in letters to The Guardian signed by a fringe assortment of British Jews.

CAA Chairman Gideon Falter has again responded with a letter:

A letter (9 August), signed by a fringe assortment of British Jews, accused Campaign Against Antisemitism of being “pro-Israel lobbyists” because we believe that Jeremy Corbyn has allied himself with and granted impunity to antisemites on the left, the latest example of which being his peerage for Shami Chakrabarti in return for her report clearing him and the party of rampant antisemitism. How shameful that in 2016, as a Jew who opposes antisemitism, I have to write to a British newspaper for the second time in a year to refute the allegation that our charity, set up exclusively to fight antisemitism, is actually a pawn employed by a foreign government to smear its enemies.

Antisemitism in the Labour party is real and recognised by the full cross-denominational spectrum of British Jews. Had that antisemitic slur against Campaign Against Antisemitism been signed by anything other than a tiny collection of Jews whose views are abhorred by the mainstream Jewish community, you would not have dared to publish it.

CAA’s Regulatory Enforcement Unit is complaining to the Independent Press Standards Organisation.

Extensive further allegations of antisemitism in the Labour Party have come to light today, adding further to the scandalous handling by Labour of its antisemitism problem.

The Observer reports that Friends of Al-Aqsa, whose founder, Ismail Patel, has publicly supported genocidal antisemitic terrorist group Hamas, collected £10,000 for Jeremy Corbyn’s last leadership campaign at a fundraising dinner. Patel gave a speech in 2014 in which he said: “Hamas is no terrorist organisation. The reason they hate Hamas is because they refuse to be subjugated, occupied by the Israeli state, and we salute Hamas for standing up to Israel.” Jeremy Corbyn’s spokesman told The Observer that the donation cheque had bounced, and that there might have been a second cheque that was lost, insisting: “There’s nothing dodgy going on.” He then withdrew his comment when it was pointed out that the donation had not been declared to the Electoral Commission. It is unclear whether this means that the official line is that something “dodgy” might be or might have been “going on”.

Next, The Sunday Times reports that the soon-to-be Labour peer Shami Chakrabarti, whose inquiry into antisemitism in the party we decried as a “whitewash”, ignored allegations by policy adviser turned whistleblower in Jeremy Corbyn’s office. Josh Simons reportedly submitted evidence of antisemitism and “flippant disdain” for the Jewish community among senior Labour figures to Chakrabarti, telling her that some of Corbyn’s team had “at least a blind spot with antisemitism and at worst a wilful disregard for it”. One member of the office even referred to a “Jewish conspiracy”, according to Simons. He is reported to have particularly singled out Seumas Milne, Jeremy Corbyn’s Director of Strategy, who Simons says subjected him to an “inquisition” about being Jewish, his family and his attitude to Israel. Milne has also spoken out openly in support of the genocidal antisemitic terrorist group Hamas, praising them for their “spirit of resistance”.

Meanwhile Sky News has reported that having been engulfed in an honours storm, Shami Chakrabarti may be appointed to the Shadow Cabinet when she joins the House of Lords. Asked by Sky News, Jeremy Corbyn’s spokesman refused to rule out that Chakrabarti would be promoted straight to the Shadow Cabinet. We strongly suspect that she was promised the position and the honour before or during her inquiry into antisemitism, and that the inquiry was therefore designed to cover up antisemitism within Labour rather than fix it. Chakrabarti for weeks coyly and then aggressively refused to comment on whether she had been offered a peerage, right up until the publication of the honours list.

This constant stream of controversy and scandal within the Labour Party in relation to antisemitism people further erodes the trust of all reasonable Britons in the party itself. Weak cover stories, half excuses, support from and for extremists, power and honour being handed to those covering up antisemitism, and now money being donated by terrorist sympathisers and supporters; there can be no question that this is being misread or spun by a specific interest group.

A web of evidence and connected actions is revealing a party engaging in anti-Jewish activity not by accident but by design. The pretence of dealing with this antisemitism by means of a weak and tendentious inquiry, followed almost immediately by the reward of its author with a paid position of power and possible front bench role, seems to confirm what many Jewish people have suspected for some time.

Labour needs to clearly answer questions about politicians and senior staff with anti-Jewish tendencies and positions. They need to answer properly why they accepted donations from anti-Jewish terror supporters rather than fudge the question by suggesting an error in the cashing of the cheque itself. They need to address openly their immediate elevation to the Lords of the person they claimed was investigating their problem. They need to root out the antisemites from all parts of their party rather than empowering them.

If they do not do these things, then it is little wonder that the party is increasingly seen as unrepentantly and institutionally antisemitic, much to the shame of many in Labour like John Mann MP, whose proud personal history of fighting antisemitism now stands at odds with the behaviour of his party.

If anybody still took Shami Chakrabarti’s report on antisemitism in the Labour Party or Jeremy Corbyn’s declared opposition to antisemitism seriously, this must be the final straw.

Jeremy Corbyn has nominated Shami Chakrabarti for a peerage in return for her inquiry into antisemitism which cleared the Labour Party of antisemitism. It is the only nomination that Jeremy Corbyn has made, and he has previously promised that he would never nominate anyone for a peerage.

Shami Chakrabarti’s inquiry into antisemitism was suspected of being a fraud from the moment she promised to conduct it in Labour’s interests. Sure enough, she delivered a whitewash which failed to deal with Labour’s antisemitism problem in any meaningful way. She did not tackle allegations of antisemitism in the Labour Party or their woeful handling by Jeremy Corbyn, and she even refused to adopt a definition of antisemitism.

Having promised to never send anyone to the House of Lords, that is exactly what Jeremy Corbyn has done in return for a clean bill of health.

The Labour Party’s inquiry into allegations of antisemitism in the Oxford University Labour Club has today been leaked. Carried out by Baroness Jan Royall, the report was commissioned after Alex Chalmers, Co-Chair of the club, resigned in February 2016 stating rampant levels of antisemitism as his reason for doing so. The incident brought antisemitism in the Labour Party into the public spotlight, and Campaign Against Antisemitism met Baroness Royall to assist her inquiry.

The full version of Baroness Royall’s report was originally kept secret, with only the executive summary being published in May. It was then expected to be published in full alongside the wider-ranging Chakrabarti Inquiry report into antisemitism in the Labour Party last month, but instead Baroness Royall was brought into the Chakrabarti Inquiry as a Co-Vice Chair, perhaps as a means of keeping her quiet. Baroness Royall’s report remained unpublished and the report issued by the Chakrabarti Inquiry was a total whitewash. The JC has now published a leaked copy of Baroness Royall’s full report.

Baroness Royall finds “no evidence that the Club is itself institutionally antisemitic” but notes a “cultural problem in which behaviour and language that would once have been intolerable is now tolerated. Some Jewish members do not feel comfortable attending the meetings, let alone participating.”

Looking at the wider issue of antisemitism, she also explains that “a pervading discourse now is that Jews are neither weak, nor poor, neither workers, nor have-nots. In short, Jews cannot be victims and cannot be discriminated against.” She goes on to say that “being anti-Zionist…is often used deliberately as a tool of antisemitism”.

Baroness Royall further notes “an environment in which Jews cannot debate, or feel safe to do so, unless their every remark is prefaced by a criticism of the Israeli government”. While she explains that a clear definition of what is antisemitic “can provide useful tools for helping consider what may, or may not, constitute antisemitic discourse” and urges the Chakrabarti Inquiry “to consider this carefully”, the Chakrabarti enquiry conspicuously avoided defining antisemitism.

The full text of Baroness Royall’s report does not change our opinion following the publication of the partial report. The full report tells us nothing new, except that Baroness Royall thinks that Alex Chalmers was wrong when he resigned as Co-Chair of Oxford University Labour Club over rampant institutional antisemitism.

The leaking of Baroness Royall’s report has revealed that it too fails to identify individuals who are guilty of antisemitism within the Labour Party. It now seems that this reluctance to name those responsible may be a reflection of Labour’s inner conflicts.

The Young Labour conference at Scarborough followed shortly after Young Labour’s own suppressed investigation. It became clear at that Scarborough conference that some of the individuals alleged to be guilty of antisemitism at Oxford are the same young politicians with important roles in Momentum, the movement that help engineer the election of Jeremy Corbyn.

The fact that they are under suspicion lends greater urgency to the task of providing transparency on this issue, which the Labour party refuses to do.

Yet again, it seems that the needs for political expediency outranks the desire of the Labour Party’s leadership to confront the antisemitism in its ranks.

A study funded by the Scottish Government has found that the Scottish Jewish community is feeling increasingly isolated and fearful. SCoJeC, a charity which advocates for Scottish Jews, was commissioned to undertake the research which included a survey and focus groups.

Researchers discovered that it was becoming relatively common for Scotland’s 5,887 Jews to keep their Judaism secret, and that many of the 400 Israelis living in Scotland hide their nationality and do not speak Hebrew in public. Noting that a growing number of Scottish Jews could name nothing positive about being a Jew in Scotland, the study reported that some Scottish Jews were considering leaving Scotland due to rising antisemitism.

One Jew summed up the change in two quotes given two years apart, saying in 2014 that Scotland was a “darn good place to be a Jew”, but reporting this year that “I feel alienated, and no longer Scottish first then Jewish, I feel Jewish only.”

Numerous respondents told SCoJeC that they had stopped attending synagogue services due to fear of antisemitism, were the victims of antisemitic jokes or social media posts and felt victimised for being Jewish.

Much of the prejudice directed at Scottish Jews was due to the bigotry of Scots opposed to Israel, who expressed their views by bullying, intimidating and abusing Jews. Respondents said that they were singled out for their cultural and religious ties to the Jewish state, and that Zionism, the movement for Jewish self-determination, had become socially unacceptable. The Scottish Government came in for criticism in the report for its “disproportionate obsession” with Israel and respondents said that Police Scotland was losing the confidence of Scottish Jews by failing to tackle blatant antisemitism amongst the ranks of Scottish anti-Israel activists.

The Scottish Cabinet Secretary for Communities, Social Security and Equalities, Angela Constance, responded by saying: “I will give full consideration to [this study] and look forward to working with the Jewish community to ensure that Scotland continues to be one of the best places in the world for people from all backgrounds to live, work and raise their families.”

Nothing in the report gave any indication that the situation for Scottish Jews was likely to improve.

This morning at 10:30, the Home Secretary will publish a Hate Crime Action Plan which will include measures to review the police response to hate crime including antisemitism.

Campaign Against Antisemitism welcomes the adoption of its recommendations by the government. Under the new strategy there will be a thorough review of police forces’ response to hate crime by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC). This measure is one of a series of recommendations adopted by the Home Office following regular discussions with CAA.

In May this year, CAA’s National Antisemitic Crime Audit was welcomed by then Home Secretary Theresa May. The Audit noted that there had been a 26% rise in antisemitic crime reported to the police around the UK, a 51% surge in antisemitic violence, but a drop in charging by police forces. Amongst our key recommendations was a national review by HMIC and we are delighted that Theresa May and her successor as Home Secretary, Amber Rudd, have adopted it.

In recent weeks our Chairman and our Director of Investigations and Enforcement have held meetings with the Director of Public Prosecutions, Alison Saunders, and Assistant Commissioner Martin Hewitt to discuss the poor response to antisemitic crime.

At a time when antisemitic hate crime is increasing, it is encouraging that the Home Office has listened to our recommendations. In January 2015, we presented our five point action plan to the Home Secretary, Director of Public Prosecutions and Chief Executive of the College of Policing. In May this year we specifically called for a review of all forces by HMIC in our National Antisemitic Crime Audit, to which Theresa May responded: “I welcome this review by the Campaign Against Antisemitism and we will consider its recommendations carefully as we develop our new Hate Crime Action Plan.”

Proactive measures are essential, and we welcome this announcement. We look forward to continuing our work with the Home Office to help translate this plan into action, helping to protect Jewish and other minorities.

The recent surge in recorded hate crime following the referendum has revealed to the country what Jewish citizens have known for too long: hate crime is often dismissed and not prosecuted. Non-violent antisemitic hate crime often goes unprosecuted, creating an atmosphere of impunity. This created a climate where there has been and a 51% leap in recorded antisemitic violent attacks.

For too long, British Jews have been denied British justice, and we are very pleased that this is now under the spotlight. Hate crime must be prosecuted with zero tolerance and that means swift, thorough police work and expert prosecution. We need to see more cases prosecuted, not just those for certain minorities; one type of hate crime is not more or less important than another.

In a letter to The Independent, Baroness Tonge has bizarrely claimed that Campaign Against Antisemitism criticised her speech last Thursday to the House of Lords because she says we are opposed to organ donation, and that she is perfectly entitled to call on British Jews to “travel more widely and hear the opinions of Muslims and non-Muslims all over the world, as I do in my international development work”.

In response, CAA Chairman Gideon Falter wrote: “In yesterday’s Independent, Baroness Tonge claims that we have criticised her because she thinks we are opposed to organ donation, which is nonsense. As she well knows, we object to her fuelling of the antisemitic blood libel that Israelis secretly harvest organs. It is a modern incarnation of a medieval lie which was used to incite massacres of Jews in England in the 12th and 13th Centuries. We also criticised Baroness Tonge’s attempt to hold British Jews collectively responsible for perceived injustices committed by Israel. The real scandal is not that Baroness Tonge — whose past comments forced her to resign her party’s whip in disgrace — said these things, but that she remains in the House of Lords and the Liberal Democrat Party, which disgraces itself with every day that she remains a member.”

If you feel that it is time for the Liberal Democrats to expel Baroness Tonge from their Party, then write to Tim Farron at tim.farron@libdems.org.uk. You may also wish to make a formal complaint to the Party using this simple online form: http://www.libdems.org.uk/making_a_complaint. In answer to e-mails and letters from CAA and our supporters, the Liberal Democrats have said that they can only initiate disciplinary proceedings against Baroness Tonge if formal complaints are made on their website.

On Thursday, Baroness Tonge, made a speech in the House of Lords in which she repeated her demand that British Jews condemn the Jewish state. She also claimed that Israel was responsible for the rise of ISIS, and that Palestinian terrorist organisations whose declared mission is to annihilate all Jews had a “justified grudge”.

We cannot know how many of our supporters heeded our call and wrote to Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron, but CAA has received a response and so have many of our supporters.

The Party confirmed that though Baroness Tonge was forced to resign the Liberal Democrat whip in 2012, she remains a member of the Party and, of course, is an active member of the House of Lords.

Though the Party’s response did not answer our call to publicly call for Baroness Tonge to be expelled from the House of Lords, it did say that a disciplinary process could be started to have her expelled.

A part of the response sent to CAA but oddly omitted from replies sent to our supporters stated: “We’re a democratic party so the leader isn’t allowed to simply expel an individual. However, we do have a robust complaints procedure and when a complaint is received it’s investigated accordingly.”

We were unsure whether this meant that an investigation had been opened so we have sent a further e-mail asking that disciplinary proceedings be started, and that the Party should join our call for Baroness Tonge to be expelled from the legislature.

You may wish to contact Tim Farron, leader of the Liberal Democrats, at tim.farron@libdems.org.uk.

Baroness Tonge, who was forced to resign from the Liberal Democrat Party in the House of Lords over antisemitic remarks in 2012, has once again tried to hold Jews to account for ‘crimes’ she perceives Israel to have committed.

Speaking in the House of Lords today, Baroness Tonge blamed Israel for the rise of extreme Islamism and ISIS. She then went on to say that Israel did not deserve the support of British Jews, but that Jews nonetheless had a special responsibility to stop the Israeli government “destroying…the Middle East and the wider world”.

Tonge also claimed that Palestinian terrorist groups have a “justified grudge” against Israel, effectively defending the terrorism that is aimed at Jewish people in Israel and around the world by Hamas, Islamic Jihad and other terrorist organisations.

In January last year we condemned Baroness Tonge for submitting a written question in the House of Lords which asked the government “to encourage Jewish faith leaders in the United Kingdom publicly to condemn settlement building by Israel and to make clear their support for universal human rights.”

Baroness Tonge has a long history of making these sorts of remarks. It is despicable to see her continuing to use the House of Lords to try to make demands of Jewish people. Dictating to Jews what their relationship should be with the Jewish state of Israel is unacceptable, and the definition of antisemitism clearly states that it is antisemitic to hold Jews “collectively responsible for actions of the state of Israel.”

Having previously suggested an investigation into supposed Israeli harvesting of human organs, which is the modern-day incarnation of the mediaeval antisemitic blood libel, Baroness Tonge is once again claiming that British Jews are the ones with unacceptable opinions on Israel.

We cannot expect Baroness Tonge to apologise, as she means it, and has a long history of antisemitism which has seen her forced to resign from the Parliamentary Liberal Democrat Party. It is now time for her to be expelled from the Liberal Democrat Party entirely, not just the parliamentary party, and it is also high time she was expelled from the House of Lords.

You may wish to write to the leader of the Liberal Democrat Party, Tim Farron MP, at tim.farron@libdems.org.uk.

A Jewish man has been assaulted on a bus by a woman shouting antisemitic abuse. Just after 10:00 this morning, a woman boarded the 253 bus in Amhurst Park in Stamford Hill, north London, and began shouting antisemitic abuse at a Jewish man who was already on the bus. She then proceeded to pour a bottle of juice over him and two Muslim ladies on the bus intervened to stop the attack. Shomrim, the volunteer Jewish neighbourhood watch patrol, are assisting and supporting the victim. Police are now appealing for witnesses to step forward. Campaign Against Antisemitism is speaking to TfL regarding CCTV and ticketing evidence.

The National Union of Students has voted to remove the right of Jewish students to choose their representative on the union’s Anti-Racism and Anti-Fascism Committee. In previous years, the Jewish student representative bodies (representing around 8,500 registered Jewish students) were consulted and had a say in choosing the Jewish representative on the committee. That is no longer the case, and now the decision will be solely that of NUS’s National Executive Committee and its President Malia Bouattia. Indeed it was Bouattia who approved the amendment, using her casting vote.

Malia Bouattia has called Birmingham University a “Zionist outpost in higher education” because it has “the largest Jsoc [Jewish student society] in the country.” She has railed against “Zionist-led media outlets”, defended Palestinian terrorism as “resistance” and voted against condemning ISIS. When CAA and others called on her to retract her comments, condemn terrorism and endorse the NUS policy on antisemitism she counterclaimed instead.

Given Malia Bouattia’s track record on Jewish matters, it may not come as a surprise that it was her casting vote that condemned the Jewish student body to lose the right to choose its representative in the NUS campaign against racism and fascism.

The Union of Jewish Students has condemned the decision, saying that this just another example of “Jews being pushed out of university life”.

This is another instance of the welfare of Jewish students being deliberately ignored, and voices of Jewish students being shunned. Furthermore, by replacing the Jewish students’ representative with an unendorsed committee member, there is a clear risk that the perpetrators of antisemitism will feel protected.

In reality, this decision can only open the door to antisemites and denude the NUS of its ability to represent and protect Jewish students. Just in April, Bouattia said she would “listen to and understand Jewish concerns”. Once again she has listened, understood, and done the opposite of what was asked.

As the world reacted with shock to the horrific attack on families celebrating Bastille Day in Nice on Thursday night, many on social media turned to a familiar scapegoat, convinced that this atrocity, like all others, real or perceived, could be pinned on Jews.

Search on Twitter, Facebook and elsewhere and the outpouring of sadness and sympathy is overwhelming, however, it is all too easy to find oneself stumbling upon the antisemitic opportunists and Jew haters who take every opportunity to profess and publicise their hatred. A search on Twitter for hashtags “#NiceAttack”, “#Nice” or “#PrayForNice” and the words “Jew”or “Zionist” displays pages of antisemitic conspiracy myths.

One of the truly awful aspects of these posts is that they are rarely contradicted.  Mostly they are supported or discussed in blind faith and acceptance that this is the truth. By remaining unopposed, these heinous statements gain traction and credibility. Each time a few more will follow the train of thought, that possibly previously they would have not.

The latest antisemitic libel comes in the week that the Home Affairs Select Committee’s Inquiry into Antisemitism heard from the Chief Rabbi that more must be done by social networks, governments and internet service providers to stop the spread of racism and antisemitism in particular. This is another spectacular failure to do so and in the process antisemitic libels have just gained a few more believers.

The BBC has published an analysis of the terrorist atrocity in Nice, claiming that the attach was somehow worse than the murder of Jews at the Hypercacher kosher supermarket last January because in Nice, “the people at large” were targeted despite doing nothing “provocative”.

Through the last 18 months of jihadist terror in France, a simple pattern is emerging: it keeps getting worse. If the January 2015 attacks were aimed at specific groups – Jews and blasphemers – the November follow-up was more indiscriminate. At the Bataclan and at the cafes the Islamists killed young adults, out being European hedonists. This time, it’s gone a step further. In Nice, it is the people at large – families and groups of friends – doing nothing more provocative than attending a national celebration. Ten children were among the dead.

The BBC claimed that it was not as bad when terrorists just killed “Jews and blasphemers”, and then asserted that what has happened in Nice is a “step further” because the Jewish people shopping for their Shabbat meals in the Hypercacher kosher supermarket were not “people at large — families and groups of friends”. Instead, they were clearly “more provocative” by being Jewish and partaking in a Jewish shopping activity.

The article, by Hugh Schofield, the BBC’s Paris Correspondent, goes on to suggest that the terrorist murderers were somehow not responsible for their own bloodthirsty atrocities, because they merely “fell prey to the torrent of jihadist propaganda emanating from so-called Islamic State”. By claiming that they “fell prey” to propaganda, the BBC suggests that rather than deciding to go out and kill innocents, the decision happened to them, such that they were passive and not in control.

Finally, the BBC imagines a “moment when the attacks become so outrageous they provoke a backlash. A mosque is burned to the ground. Some white youths go on a rampage through a banlieue (suburb)”. The implication is that the worst has yet to come, and that the worst will be attacks on Muslims which would be far worse than slaughtering Jews or “hedonists” or “blasphemers” or people in Nice. The BBC tells us “this is what IS desperately wants to happen, of course” as if the slaughter of Jews and other members of society is not what they are actually trying to achieve; it is just a technique to start “a truly bloody civil conflict”. The notion that the BBC believes that the terrorist massacres in Paris in January and November last year, and now in Nice last week was not “truly” a bloody conflict.

Complaints to the BBC can be made online or by calling 03700 100 222, however, based on past experience, the institutionally antisemitic, self-regulating, BBC is extremely unlikely to find itself at fault. You might instead prefer to complain to the Department for Culture, Media and Sport, explaining why you have not felt comfortable reporting the matter to the BBC and leaving it in their hands. The Department for Culture, Media and Sport can be reached at enquiries@culture.gov.uk or by calling 020 7211 6000.

Two men were arrested in separate incidents last Sunday, as Jewish Londoners continue to be subjected to antisemitic abuse.

In one incident, a 25-year-old man was detained by Shomrim, the Jewish neighbourhood watch patrol, after he grabbed an elderly religious Jew’s hat, then tried to grab other Jews’ hats and punched them.

In a second incident the same day, Shomrim stopped a 23-year-old man for suddenly shouting antisemitic abuse at a Jewish boy.

In both cases, the Metropolitan Police Service arrived and made arrests, thanking Shomrim for their “teamwork”. Shomrim is the template for community policing, patrolling the streets and working closely with local police to thwart a wide range of crimes, from antisemitic assault through to common burglary and finding missing persons.

Police are looking for a third man in connection with yet another incident, which took place on Wednesday last week. As a man in a silver van approached a Jewish pedestrian, he opened the window to shout “F***ing Jewish c***” as he drove past. Witnesses are being sought for the incident which occurred at approximately 20:00 on Craven Walk in Hackney.

 

A 14-year-old boy who placed lit fireworks in the pockets of Jewish pedestrians has escaped with paying £20 in compensation and a referral order. The boy was arrested on 31st January in Hackney after volunteers from Shomrim, the Jewish neighbourhood watch patrol, chased and detained the boy, then called the police who arrested him.

The Hackney Youth Offender Panel issued a contract for a total period of a year and ordered the youth to pay £20 in compensation in a stunningly lenient verdict which will do nothing to deter such attacks.

Campaign Against Antisemitism will be raising this judgement with the Ministry of Justice as an example of disturbingly light sentences for antisemitic crime.

A spokesman for the Metropolitan Police Service said: “A 14-year-old male who was arrested on suspicion of racially aggravated common assault has been dealt with by the Hackney Youth Offender Panel. Police had been called at around 08:00 on Sunday, 31st January to Dunsmure Road N16 to reports of a youth assaulting members of the Jewish community. He was referred to the Hackney Youth Offender Panel for the above offence. A contract was issued having effect for an extended compliance period of two months and a total contract period 12 months. Also compensation of £20.00 is to be paid.”

We congratulate Theresa May and look forward to continuing our work with her once she is Prime Minister. She has shown great commitment as Home Secretary to ensuring that antisemitism is punished with the full force of the law, but much remains to be done. We look forward to continuing our work together to protect British society from the poison of antisemitism.

Campaign Against Antisemitism has today released a new guide to recognising antisemitism. Originally developed by our Investigations and Enforcement team to help police forces recognise antisemitic hate crime on social media, we have now adapted the guide for use by members of the public who want to better understand the language, themes and imagery of ‘the oldest hatred’.

The guide can be found on our website. Please do distribute it to anybody you believe may find it useful, and if you can see ways to improve the guide please send us your feedback.

A march in support of genocidal antisemitic terrorist group Hizballah went ahead in London on Sunday, after Campaign Against Antisemitism’s talks with the Metropolitan Police Service and the Crown Prosecution Service failed.

Hundreds of demonstrators festooned themselves and their children with Hizballah flags, and then marched through the streets of the capital in support of the terrorist group which strives for the annihilation of Jews worldwide and has perpetrated terrorist attacks against Jewish targets around the world for decades.

Members of our evidence team were made to leave for asking demonstrators about Hizballah’s policy of murdering Jews, whilst the demonstrators paraded in front of police officers with printed placards reading “We are all Hizbullah [sic]”, as they have done in previous years.

Section 13 of the Terrorism Act makes it a criminal offence for a person to carry an article “in such a way or in such circumstances as to arouse reasonable suspicion that he is a member or supporter of a proscribed [terrorist] organisation”, but the Metropolitan Police Service and the Crown Prosecution Service both obtusely argue that only the military wing of Hizballah is proscribed, and someone carrying a Hizballah flag could be supporting the political wing which is not proscribed. There is no such thing as a separate “political wing” of Hizballah which is one single organisation, with one flag.

As though to underline the double standards at play, the day after the Hizballah demonstration, Sophie Linden, the Deputy Mayor of London for Policing and Crime issued a statement saying: “We are concerned by the reported increase in racial hate crimes following the referendum result.

City Hall and the Metropolitan Police Service are giving these reports our fullest attention. I am receiving daily briefings on hate crimes and I remain in close contact with the police and partners.”

Measures taken against hate crime are utterly meaningless if supporters for genocidal antisemitic terrorists are allowed to brazenly demonstrate in

our capital city. You may wish to e-mail Sophie Linden, e-mail your MP and write to your preferred newspaper.

We are reviewing our options.

Our Campaign was not among those that offered to give evidence to the Chakrabarti Inquiry into antisemitism in the Labour Party. Having given support to Baroness Royall’s prior investigation into antisemitism at Oxford University Labour Club and seen its fate, our assessment was that it would be a whitewash, and that Jewish groups and individuals that had taken part in it would prove to be as rudely disappointed as Baroness Royall and Jewish Labour proved to be when the Royall Inquiry was silenced. We therefore withdrew: we were proven correct.

Yesterday, Mr Corbyn appeared before MPs from the House of Commons Home Affairs Select Committee to answer questions about antisemitism in the Labour Party.

When it comes to antisemitism, he proved himself to be a man who fatally combines the flaws of incomprehension with a lack of responsible leadership.

A most revealing moment in Mr Corbyn’s appearance was when Nus Ghani MP declared that Chakrabarti’s report was one written as if to explain antisemitism to children: the words ‘Zio’ and ‘Paki’ were bad. Jews should not be called Nazis, and so on. For what lies behind that simplistic view is the man himself, trapped in his formative years, when Jews were, as he reminisced yesterday, those such as the Holocaust survivors working in sweat shops that he met as an activist: working class, poor and victims. When questioned repeatedly on all aspects of antisemitism, he repeatedly revealed this Corbyn, a man dedicated to fighting what he sees as a racism like any other, so much so, that he refuses to separate antisemitism from other forms of hate, even when Ms Ghani pressed him continuously to do so.

For the keys to understanding the complexity of antisemitism require a flexibility of mind and intellectual understanding that he demonstrated yesterday he does not possess.

Antisemitism is a prejudice that shape-shifts. It once was purely racism, but now has adapted and grown another skin. As the former Chief Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks, winner of the 2016 Templeton Prize, points out: after the Enlightenment, it was no longer possible to hate Jews for their religion, so they were hated for their race; after World War II, racial discrimination became unacceptable, and so now Jews are hated for their new country. Mr Corbyn, as evidenced yesterday, is firmly stuck in 1945, and has not, and cannot comprehend the world of antisemitism in which, for example, his brother Piers resides. In this new incarnation, Israel is now the ‘Jew among nations’, creating ISIS, controlling banks, and perpetrating modern versions of the blood libel on innocent children. This new brand of hatred is projected on Jewish communities worldwide by their association with Israel. Jeremy Corbyn, indeed, stands front and centre of that part of the Left that, after the fall of the Berlin Wall embraced an ‘Anti-Imperialist’ Anti-Western position in which they heartily embraced anti-American Islamists, such as those in Iran and Israel/Palestine. In that cauldron, their own strains of Sovietist antisemitism met a genocidally antisemitic Islamism, igniting a new fire of global Jew-hate that has resurrected that which the world believed it would never see again.

Throughout his questioning, Mr Corbyn revealed his incomprehension of history’s emphatic twist. In an excruciating passage yesterday, one MP pressed Mr Corbyn on the fact that Ms Chakrabarti’s report contains no definitions and was therefore meaningless. He responded by explaining that antisemitism is ‘obvious’ and proceeded, child-like, to define it as “hating Jews for who they are”, reducing the most difficult and intricate of human hatreds, which is in large part a conspiracy theory, to simplistic babble. We are therefore unsurprised that he defended Paul Flynn for his attack on the appointment of a Jew as British ambassador to Israel because of his “dual loyalties”, a man famous for such comments who, nonetheless, Corbyn last week appointed Shadow Secretary of State for Wales.

Neither can we be surprised that, when asked, “Does the State of Israel have the right to exist?” he initially replied, resignedly “it exists”.  Nor can we be surprised by his continuing yesterday to justify close comradeship and support of those such as Raed Saleh, Reverend Stephen Sizer, Paul Eisen and Hamas, simply because they embrace the ‘Palestinian cause’. In no other walk of political life could any public figure use the promotion of one cause, whatever its merits, to justify strong and supportive relationships with blood libellers, misogynists, genocidal antisemites, Holocaust deniers and homophobes, people who are essentially fascist and as hateful in their motivations as any racist or bigot. At one moment of black comedy, he attempted to avoid calling Hamas antisemitic until Keith Vaz, the Chair of the committee, read him an excerpt from the Hamas Constitution explicitly calling for all Jews to be sought out and murdered. Only then did Mr Corbyn relent.

These associations and their attendant poor justifications have led some to question whether Mr Corbyn is fit for public life, let alone fit to lead a social-justice party.

In the course of the questioning, Mr Corbyn said that he was “content” that the vice-chair of his Momentum movement, Jackie Walker, had had her suspension lifted, justifying it behind the classic ‘virtue’ argument that the Left cannot be racist – that because Ms Walker is of Afro-Caribbean heritage on one side and Jewish on the other, somehow her genetic inheritance released her from the charge of ignorant bigotry in proclaiming the Jews authors of the slave trade. He was by his own admission unaware of whether she’d ever apologised, and he seemed not to want to know either. Mr Corbyn then claimed that another Momentum activist and author of the racist trope against Ruth Smeeth MP was a victim of “the media”.

But apart from his total failure – willing or otherwise – to comprehend the nature of modern antisemitism, he has another flaw that makes him an enabler of antisemitism: his failure to effectively lead on this important issue. Antisemitism bubbles in all societies, but societies only become openly antisemitic when leaders enable it.

As Chuka Umunna MP so pointedly remarked, when Ruth Smeeth was being abused by Marc Wadsworth at the Chakrabarti report’s launch — walking out in tears to jeers from activists under Mr Corbyn’s nose – he had no notion that, as leader of Labour, it was his place to spontaneously act and call it out. Instead, he did nothing, and then exchanged smiling and friendly words with the perpetrator on the way out. Instead of taking an emphatic lead, he refused yesterday to condemn Ken Livingstone’s comments about Hitler’s relationship with Zionism, citing ‘due process’. Similarly, he used half-hearted words about Ruth Smeeth’s abuse: he would not call that ‘racist’. He would not criticise Momentum’s dark heart, but instead praised it. When confronted with Jewish complaints that his behaviour made Jews feel “sad, shocked and insecure” he replied that he was “disappointed” with the victims.

Mr Corbyn yesterday proved that he is aground, a man whom the tide of history has bypassed. He sits, intellectually beached, unable to grasp the antisemitism he continues to enable. Not only that, his failure to assume the mantle of responsible leadership continues to enable the antisemitic bigotry in his party and beyond.

When Mr Corbyn was confronted with Ruth Smeeth MP’s statement that the Labour party is no longer a safe place for Jews, he disagreed. Yesterday, Jeremy Corbyn’s performance and the Chakrabarti report have only reinforced, rather than reversed that view.

We are looking for office space, furniture and computer equipment. Can you help? We urgently need three desks in an office in North West London from which we can operate (for which we can pay a modest rent), as well as any office furniture or computer equipment you can donate.

Since we were established almost two years ago, we have campaigned as volunteers to turn the rising tide of antisemitism in Britain. Our work has expanded enormously, and we now have eight departments manned by a large team of volunteers. We are proud of what we have achieved without a single member of staff, but the time has come to hire our first part-time employee to run our long-term programmes, funded by a generous grant.

Please send suggestions, contacts or information (including photographs where possible) to info@antisemitism.uk.

Thank you for your support!

Talks between Campaign Against Antisemitism and the Metropolitan Police Service and the Crown Prosecution Service have failed to prevent the flying of terrorist flags over London this weekend.

Every year, “Al Quds Day” is marked in cities around the world at the instigation of Ayatollah Khomenei, Supreme Leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran. As Iran is principal sponsor of proscribed terrorist organisation Hizballah, the events tend to celebrate Hizballah’s terrorism, and this year’s march in London looks like it will be no different.

This year, as in previous years the march is expected to include a parade of Hizballah flags and antisemitic placards and chants. Whereas the flying of the Hizballah flag has been banned at this year’s march in other European countries, Britain ignominiously stands out for its permissive stance towards Hizballah supporters.

Section 13 of the Terrorism Act clearly states that “A person in a public place commits an offence if he (a) wears an item of clothing, or (b) wears, carries or displays an article, in such a way or in such circumstances as to arouse reasonable suspicion that he is a member or supporter of a proscribed organisation.”

However the British authorities, with flagrant disregard for the broad scope of the offence, consider that flying a Hizballah flag is acceptable because only the “military wing” of the terrorist group is proscribed (banned) under legislation. The concept of separate parts of Hizballah is nonsense; they are inseparable and both ‘wings’ believe that Jews should be sought out wherever they are in the world and murdered.

Post Brexit, we have seen the Mayor of London, the Metropolitan Police Service and the Crown Prosecution Service adopt stances of zero tolerance to hate crime, yet a procession of those supporting genocidal antisemitic terrorists appears not to concern them.

A monitoring team from Campaign Against Antisemitism will gather evidence at the event, following which we will evaluate our legal options.

Hundreds of people are expected at a counter-demonstration called for 15:00 on Sunday on North Audley Street.

Jewish Labour MP Ruth Smeeth has broken her silence and called on Jeremy Corbyn to resign after he failed to intervene in what she said was an antisemitic incident during the press conference to launch the Chakrabarti Inquiry into antisemitism in the Labour Party.

After a Labour activist accused Smeeth during the question and answer session of participating in a media conspiracy, Smeeth left in tears and issued the following statement calling on Jeremy Corbyn to resign:

“This morning, at the launch of the Chakrabarti Inquiry into antisemitism, I was verbally attacked by a Momentum activist and Jeremy Corbyn supporter who used traditional antisemitic slurs to attack me for being part of a ‘media conspiracy’. It is beyond belief that someone could come to the launch of a report on antisemitism in the Labour Party and espouse such vile conspiracy theories about Jewish people, which were ironically highlighted as such in Ms Chakrabarti’s report, while the leader of my own party stood by and did absolutely nothing.

“People like this have no place in our party or our movement and must be opposed. Until today I had made no public comment about Jeremy’s ability to lead our party, but the fact that he failed to intervene is final proof for me that he is unfit to lead, and that a Labour Party under his stewardship cannot be a safe space for British Jews. I have written to the General Secretary of the Labour Party and the Chair of the Parliamentary Labour Party to formally complain about this morning’s events.

“No-one from the Leader’s office has contacted me since the event, which is itself a catastrophic failure of leadership. I call on Jeremy Corbyn to resign immediately and make way for someone with the backbone to confront racism and antisemitism in our party and in the country.”

At the beginning of the event, Jeremy Corbyn to compared Israel to ISIS, showing just how little grasp he has of this pressing problem for his party.

Campaign Against Antisemitism has condemned the report as “a vague, meaningless whitewash that will do nothing to rid Labour of antisemitism or address the total absence of leadership it has shown on this issue.” The report is 41 pages long, but Campaign Against Antisemitism has produced a version with key phrases relating to antisemitism highlighted in yellow.

 

Today, the Chakrabarti Inquiry into antisemitism in the Labour Party presented what it set out to present: a narrow set of recommendations on how the Labour Party should change its rules on racism.

The Inquiry did not examine the disgraceful cases of antisemitism in the Labour Party, or their even more disgraceful mishandling by the Party leadership, including Jeremy Corbyn who presides over a regime of the lightest slaps on wrists for even the most offensive and deliberate antisemites.

Inexcusably, the Inquiry proposes making it harder to suspend antisemites and keeping suspensions secret so as not to affect elections. Additionally the Inquiry dismisses any claims of antisemitism arising from sharing a stage with antisemites, and suggests that any antisemitic incident coming to light after more than two years should not be considered — a limitation period so short it has no parallel in any other disciplinary regime that we are aware of.

Apart from imploring Labour activists to stop calling Jews ‘Zios’ or accusing them of supporting Nazi policies, this Inquiry is a vague, meaningless whitewash that will do nothing to rid Labour of antisemitism or address the total absence of leadership it has shown on this issue.

As if to emphasise how far the Labour party are from dealing with their antisemitism problem, Jeremy Corbyn, during the launch, compared Israel to ISIS, and failed to intervene to defend a Jewish MP who left the event in tears after being very publicly racially abused by a Labour activist.

The Chakrabarti Inquiry has avoided addressing the well-documented postwar re-emergence of an insidious antisemitism of the ‘progressive’ Left, merely encouraging Labour members to not use abusive words. Instead of helping the Labour Party regain trust, this report will further harm its reputation in the Jewish community, as well as in the wider world.

The report is 41 pages long, but Campaign Against Antisemitism has produced a version with key phrases relating to antisemitism highlighted in yellow.

University of York Students’ Union has made a public apology and offered £1,000 to a Jewish student whose university career was wrecked by antisemitic incidents. It is the first case of its kind. Zachary Confino, 21, a law student, suffered stress and narrowly missed a first-class degree, after two years of battling with antisemitism from anti-Israeli students at the University of York. Jo Johnson MP, the Universities Minister, intervened to help broker the public, written apology from the university’s students’ union over his treatment.

It is right that the students’ union should apologise for the way in which it reacted to Zachary Confino’s complaints about antisemitism. But their apology and payment of compensation are not enough. There must also be a commitment to fighting antisemitism properly, something they failed to do in this case.

It should not be necessary for individual Jewish students to fight lengthy battles with their students’ unions over the course of many months or years in order to have Jew-hatred dealt with properly.

Students who abused Zachary by suggesting Hitler “was onto something” ought to have been disciplined for their racial abuse and bullying. How many other Jewish students do not have the incredible strength and dedication of Zachary Confino to fight the antisemitism they experience? And when will British universities start to fight it for them, as they should fight all forms racism within their student and professional membership?

Every day for four days this week, a playground in Stamford Hill, which has a large Jewish population, has been targeted with swastikas, leaving local parents with serious concerns. Shomrim, the Jewish neighbourhood watch patrol, found the posters in and around the playground on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday this week. The Metropolitan Police Service is investigating and has appealed for witnesses to come forward.

The BBC has cleared newsreader Tim Willcox over allegations of antisemitism brought by Campaign Against Antisemitism. Giving its final ruling, the BBC Trust decided that Willcox had not made antisemitic comments during two broadcasts in November 2014 and January 2015.

In the first broadcast, Willcox was presenting a review of the next day’s newspapers which included a headline about Jewish donors ending their support for the Labour Party. Injecting his own analysis, Willcox suggested that the “Jewish faces” of the “Jewish lobby” would also probably be opposed to the “mansion tax” proposed by the party.

In the second broadcast, following the aftermath of the January 2015 terrorist attacks in Paris, during which four shoppers at a kosher supermarket had been murdered, Willcox conducted an interview with a French lady who called for greater acknowledgment that Jews were now being targeted by Islamist terrorists. Willcox interrupted her to observe that “the Palestinians suffer hugely at Jewish hands as well.”

Media lawyer Tony Morris represented Campaign Against Antisemitism in our ensuing complaints to the BBC, which included complaints to the BBC’s Editorial Complaints Unit, Ofcom, the Director-General of the BBC and the BBC Trust. The BBC Trust is supposed to hold the BBC to account, but it fails to do so abjectly, as it has demonstrated in this case.

In a letter to BBC Director-General, Lord Hall, Campaign Against Antisemitism’s Chairman, Gideon Falter wrote: “I do not know of any other minority group so routinely told that its concerns are meritless by the BBC. Your organisation treats the concerns of Jewish licence fee payers with glib contempt, feigning to investigate but from the outset contriving to dismiss complaints at the earliest opportunity, and strenuously avoiding any meaningful public or private discussion.

Referring to the MacPherson principle used by the police and other public bodies when investigating allegations of racism, Falter continued: “In a country where the MacPherson principle is the gold standard for dealing with complaints of racism, I know of no other public body that, when faced with accusations of racism immediately retorts in the media that the accusations are groundless, the victims are not victims and that the matter is clear-cut. Normally one would expect a commitment to review the accusations in the most transparent and dispassionate manner possible, for example by means of an independent review, and public statements would be expected to reflect the fact that a review has been opened and no statement can be made that would prejudice it.”

Falter’s letter concludes: “Lord Hall, the BBC is part of British culture, but under your leadership and that of your predecessors, the BBC has become a blight for British Jews — a relic of the old-fashioned institutional antisemitism of the British establishment that has been excised from almost every sphere of public life, only to find sanctuary at your unaccountable, unrepentant BBC. You preside over an institution that is antisemitic both by act and concealment. The BBC that British Jews wish they could love and be proud of instead shames our country by shielding bigots.”

Campaign Against Antisemitism has called for the BBC Trust to be replaced by Ofcom as the BBC’s overseer, a finding that has now been supported by a government-backed report. However, in the case of the Willcox complaints, Ofcom refused even to investigate, despite the fact that it already has jurisdiction over the BBC in cases of antisemitism.

Wilberth Henry has been convicted of antisemitic harassment and threats after shouting “I’ll f***ing beat you up, you f***ing Jewish c***”. Henry failed to attend court, but was convicted in his absence on evidence given by a member of Shomrim, the Jewish volunteer neighbourhood watch patrol.

Henry was reportedly spotted during a joint patrol by police and Shomrim. As a police officer approached him, he fled on foot, ran into a house and locked the door behind him. The police officer stayed at the front door whilst the Shomrim member ran to secure the back of the house. Henry then climbed out of a first floor window intending to escape, but stopped when he realised he had nowhere to go. After long negotiations, he eventually entered back through the window and was arrested.

The 31 nations of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) have adopted the EUMC definition of antisemitism. The definition, was first published in 2005 by the EU Monitoring Centre on Racism and Xenophobia (EUMC), now the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA), and has become the standard definition used around the world. Prior to its adoption by the 31 member states of the IHRA, the definition was already in use by the European Parliament, the UK College of Policing, the US Department of State and others including Campaign Against Antisemitism.

The definition recognises the many guises of contemporary antisemitism, including antisemitism disguised as political discourse regarding the State of Israel. The full definition can be found on our website.

The IHRA’s 31 member states are Argentina, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and the United States of America.

Jackie Walker, vice chair of the Labour Party’s influential Momentum pressure group, has reportedly been reinstated by the Labour Party after her suspension over allegations of antisemitism. Walker was suspended following an exchange on Facebook. She asked “what debt do we owe the Jews?” When another Facebook user responded by saying “the Holocaust”, Walker accused Jews of having special responsibility for what she called “the African Holocaust”. Walker claimed that “many Jews (my ancestors too) were the chief financiers of the sugar and slave trade” and then suggested that Jews murdered during the Holocaust were “victims to some extent through choice”.

According to the Guido Fawkes political blog, a Labour spokesman said: “Following the outcome of an investigation, Jacqueline Walker is no longer suspended and remains a member of the party.”

If the Labour Party has truly readmitted a member who publicly subscribes to antisemitic conspiracy theories of Jews financing and causing the slave trade, their ongoing inquiry into antisemitism can barely be taken seriously. To suggest that over six million Jews were murdered during the Holocaust in part through choice to be victims is a grotesque and deliberate twisting of the historical facts. People do, however, choose to be antisemites and spread malicious myths about Jewish people, and for the Labour Party to readmit them so easily tells us that antisemitism in the Labour Party has become institutional.

Ken Livingstone has been taken off air by LBC radio, following Campaign Against Antisemitism’s discussions with LBC’s owner, Global. Former Mayor of London Ken Livingstone was suspended from the Labour Party last month over his comments that Hitler was “supporting Zionism” for considering the forced deportation of German Jews to pre-state Israel. Livingstone has remained resolutely unapologetic and we felt that the disgraced former mayor should not continue to be afforded the platform of his own show on LBC.

Since 29th April, we have been demanding that LBC’s owner, Global, drop Livingstone, and yesterday Global confirmed to us that Livingstone would not be returning to his regular slot. Despite having a contract with Global, Livingstone is currently off air, and following our direct demands to Global that he should be permanently taken off air, they have now confirmed to us that his contract will not be renewed.

The strongest response to Livingston’s offensive remarks is for him to be shunned, which is what Global has rightly done, and we applaud them for heeding our calls.

Police in London are searching for a man who reportedly approached a Jewish family with a metal bar and stick in his hand, and told them “Jews, move away, move away your children, a bomb is coming.” Shomrim, the Jewish neighbourhood patrol group, said that the man was described as a white male with a shaved head, wearing a dark grey short sleeve t-shirt and blue trousers. The incident took place on Queen Elizabeth’s Walk in north London, and the suspect was last seen walking on Lordship Park in N16.

Campaign Against Antisemitism has complained to the World Boxing Council, the World Boxing Association and the World Boxing Organisation, after the British Boxing Board of Control failed to take any action over Heavyweight Champion of the World Tyson Fury’s antisemitic slurs.

During a video interview with SportsViewLondon last week, Fury said: “Everyone just do what you can, listen to the government follow everybody like sheep, be brainwashed by all the Zionist, Jewish people who own all the banks, all the papers all the TV stations. Be brainwashed by them all.”

When Campaign Against Antisemitism issued a call for Fury to be banned from the sport over his repeated racist, homophobic and sexist comments, Fury took to Twitter. One tweet said: “I see all the Zionist media outlets are on my back, because I speak the truth! u will all see the truth soon enuf, they killed my lord jesus”.

Under intense pressure, Fury apologised, but we did not accept his apology as being sincere as this is merely the latest in a string of incidents. Rather than taking disciplinary action, the British Boxing Board of Control issued a statement claiming that Fury could not be racist as he is a “a man of Traveller heritage…a devout Christian and a family man”, ending the statement by taking the opportunity to advertise his next fight.

We have therefore complained to the British Boxing Board of Control about their handling of the matter, as well as writing to the World Boxing Council, the World Boxing Association and the World Boxing Organisation, asking them to take disciplinary action in accordance with their regulations.

It is time that boxing showed serious intent to eradicate antisemitism from the sport, just as other sports have done.

Fourteen headstones were smashed at the Blackley Jewish cemetery in Charlestown, north-east Manchester, on Wednesday night. Chief Superintendent Wasim Chaudhry from Greater Manchester Police issued a statement describing the vandalism as “a sickening act of antisemitism which we are taking very seriously.” He said that the attack appeared to be “deliberate and targeted” with “clear racial motivation”. The vandals appear to have climbed over the perimeter wall and broken gravestones at random around the cemetery. Chaudry promised to “do everything we can to find out who is responsible and bring the full force of the law down on them” and appealed for any witnesses to come forward.

Investigators from Campaign Against Antisemitism have discovered an antisemitic tweet by British Labour politician Afzal Khan. On 2nd August 2014, Khan tweeted a link to an article from which he quoted, “The Israeli Government are [sic] acting like Nazi’s [sic] in Gaza.”

Archived version

Khan is a Labour Member of the European Parliament for the North West and sits on various European Parliament committees including the Foreign Affairs Committee, the Budget Committee and the Security and Defence Committee, of which he is Vice Chair.

According to the definition of antisemitism that was first adopted by the European Union itself, “Drawing comparisons of contemporary Israeli policy to that of the Nazis” is antisemitic.

His use of the Nazi slur is surprising given Khan’s prominence in interfaith dialogue work. He is co-founder of The Muslim Jewish Forum of Greater Manchester and was awarded a CBE for his community and interfaith work in 2008.

However the Labour Party has declined to investigate or discipline Khan, instead issuing a short statement: “These views are not shared by the Labour Party and Afzal Khan MEP has been reminded of his responsibilities as a Labour representative.”

This is yet another signal sent to the Jewish community that the Labour Party is not taking its antisemitism problem seriously. We have seen repeated signs that Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party operates a zero tolerance policy against racism, but only when convenient.

When it costs the party politically, antisemites go unpunished, whether it’s Father of the House, Sir Gerald Kaufman MP, or now Afzal Khan MEP. Suspending Khan would cost Labour politically in the European Parliament, so presumably that is why he has been reminded not to be antisemitic instead of being suspended and investigated.

Shomrim, the volunteer neighbourhood watch patrol, rushed to deploy volunteers after a Vauxhall Vectra was seen touring Stamford Hill for a prolonged period on Monday evening, whilst its occupants shouted antisemitic abuse at Jewish passersby. The area has one of the largest Jewish populations in the country. Unfortunately police officers did not arrive in time to catch the perpetrators in the act, but thanks to detailed descriptions provided by Shomrim, it is hoped that the vehicle and its occupants will be successfully traced.

Justice, justice, you shall pursue - צדק צדק תרדף
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