A new campaign group, “Labour Against Zionist Islamophobic Racism”, or LAZIR, has been set up to support Jeremy Corbyn and campaign for the International Definition of Antisemitism to be dropped and for the Jewish Labour Movement to be thrown out of the Labour Party. The group’s logo is a laser beam smashing the logo of a Jewish Labour group.
The founder appears to be Pete Gregson, who was reportedly expelled by the GMB Union after he claimed that Israel was a “racist endeavour” that “exaggerates” the Nazi Germany’s genocide of six million Jews “for political ends.” According to a post on his Facebook page, Labour Against the Witch Hunt, are seeking to expel him from their group. If he is expelled, Mr Gregson has vowed to hold a launch event for LAZIR outside Labour Headquarters in London.
Interestingly, this is the second time that Labour Against the Witch Hunt has split, the first time being when Gerry Downing was expelled and founded Labour Against the Witch Hunt Within Labour Against the Witch Hunt, both of which met at opposite sides of the same pub at the same time. Mr Downing, who was himself expelled from the Labour Party due to his views on the Holocaust, now appears to be advising Mr Gregson on policy for LAZIR.
LAZIR, which is not to be confused with the villages of Lazir in Iran and Azerbaijan, the popular Lazir karaoke bar in Mexico, or the very catchy Lazir Lazir song, has already attracted thousands of supporters, according to a petition which was launched to support the group on April Fools’ Day.
Due to the timing of the petition and farcical policies of the group, Campaign Against Antisemitism initially wondered whether it had been launched as some kind of satirical joke or a prank. Indeed the petition includes a call “to get Zionism out of the Labour Party, because Zionism is racism” and declares its dedication to one “Jeremy Corbynto”, whom we could not identify despite an exhaustive online search, including in Italian and Maltese.
Another policy of LAZIR has caused controversy even amongst antisemitism deniers within Labour. LAZIR called for the Jewish Labour Movement to “be disaffiliated from the Labour Party and replaced with Jewish Voice for Labour” but even the sham Jewish Voice for Labour (JVL) group has distanced itself from them, posting on Facebook that they have “become aware of an initiative called Labour Against Zionist Islamophobic Racism (LAZIR) which has made reference to the role of JVL. We wish to make clear that we were not consulted on the use of our name and are not associated with this venture.”
However, British Jews can rest assured that LAZIR has also pledged to fight antisemitism, just not the “fraudulent” kind.