Dr Jenny Tonge was the Liberal Democrat MP for Richmond Park from 1997 to 2005. In June 2005 she was made a life peer as Baroness Tonge of Kew, entitling her to a seat in the House of Lords.
In 2003, Dr Tonge (as she then was) compared the living conditions of Palestinians in the Gaza strip to those suffered by Jews in the Warsaw Ghetto during the Second World War.
In 2004, during a spate of suicide bombings targeting Jews in Israel, she said that she “might just consider becoming [a suicide bomber] myself” if she was a Palestinian. After her comments were condemned as “completely unacceptable” by the Party leader, Charles Kennedy, she told the BBC that suicide bombers’ actions are “appalling and loathsome”.
In 2006, Baroness Tonge (as she had then become) said, “The pro-Israeli lobby has got its grips on the western world, its financial grips. I think they’ve probably got a grip on our party.”
In February 2010, The Palestine Telegraph, of which Baroness Tonge was a patron, published false claims that an Israel Defence Forces emergency aid hospital in Haiti was secretly harvesting organs and selling them on the black market. Baroness Tonge lent credence to those allegations, saying: “To prevent allegations such as these — which have already been posted on YouTube — going any further, the IDF and the Israeli Medical Association should establish an independent inquiry immediately to clear the names of the team in Haiti.”
In February 2012, Baroness Tonge said: “Israel is not going to be there forever in its present performance. One day, the United States of America will get sick of giving £70bn a year to Israel to support what I call America’s aircraft carrier in the Middle East — that is Israel. One day, the American people are going to say to the Israel lobby in the USA: enough is enough. Israel will lose support and then they will reap what they have sown.”
In January 2015, Baroness Tonge asked in the House of Lords whether the Government planned “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.”
In July 2016, Baroness Tonge shared an article about “Jewish power” on Facebook. The article had been written by Gilad Atzmon, a notorious antisemite.
In October 2016, Baroness Tonge hosted a meeting in the Houses of Parliament, at which an audience member suggested that Jewish people were responsible for the Holocaust.