Jewish groups brand Jeremy Corbyn anti-Semitic – but his supporters hit back
While accusations of anti-Semitism have been levelled at Corbyn since he became leader, tensions flared over the weekend when the Labour leader expressed regret for backing the artist behind an anti-Jewish mural in London’s East End over five years ago. At the time Corbyn questioned a decision to whitewash a mural of bankers – some of whom were depicted using anti-Semitic imagery – playing Monopoly and counting money on the backs of men.
The two most senior Jewish groups in Britain will take aim at Corbyn on Monday, when the Labour Party holds its weekly parliamentary meeting, rallying against the opposition leader in Parliament Square.
The Board of Deputies of British Jews and the Jewish Leadership Council will lead the protest to tell Corbyn that “enough is enough.” In an open letter, the former said that Corbyn has a “conspiratal worldview in which mainstream Jewish communities are... a hostile enemy.”
Here's the letter from the Board of Deputies of British Jews & the Jewish Leadership Council that says @jeremycorbyn "is so ideologically fixed within a far left worldview that is instinctively hostile to mainstream Jewish communities... enough is enough". pic.twitter.com/XAjCYjilf5— Rachel Lang (@rlangjournalist) March 26, 2018
Jewish Voice for Labour has thrown its support behind the opposition leader, releasing a statement late in Sunday to express their disgust over the claims levied against Corbyn. “We are appalled by the actions and statements of the Board of Deputies. They do not represent us or the many Jews in the Party who share Jeremy Corbyn’s vision for social justice and fairness. Jeremy’s consistent commitment to anti-racism is all the more needed now.”
Jewish Voice for Labour released this statement backing Corbyn and opposing the Board of Deputies who (falsely) claim to speak for all British-Jews.— The Pileus (@thepileus) March 26, 2018
The statement has already been signed by many Jewish Labour members & more including some elebrities are set to sign it this week pic.twitter.com/vIICkWGhpu
In turn, Twitter users have rallied around the opposition leader, sharing previous comments made by Corbyn. Pictures of a younger Corbyn protesting Apartheid were shared, while a recording of a speech he made on the anniversary of the Battle of Cable Street also went viral. Some even suggested the smear campaign has stemmed from his rivals in the Conservative Party.
Please listen to Jeremy Corbyn's Cable Street speech! The Leader of the Labour Party, our next Labour Prime Minister is not anti-Semitic!! Please RT to show your support for @jeremycorbyn#PredictTheNextCorbynSmear#ChangeIsComing#Forthemany#VoteLabour#JC4PMpic.twitter.com/bZdyBSAiFC— WeThePeople (@gaurangmorjaria) March 25, 2018
The letter vilifying Corbyn, written by the Board of Deputies of British Jews, has also been shared repeatedly on social media. “When Jews complain about an obviously anti-Semitic mural in Tower Hamlets, Corbyn of course supports the artist,” the letter said. “Hizbollah (sic) commits terrorist atrocities against the Jews, but Corbyn calls them his friends… exactly the same goes for Hamas.
You understand that it's the Party that deals with abuse by members, not Corbyn? The same Party that has been to all intents run by the right wing until very recently?— EL4C (@EL4JC) March 25, 2018
“Raed Salah says Jews kill Christian children to drink their blood. Corbyn opposes his extradition and invites him for tea at the House of Commons. These are not the only cases.”
Jeremy Corbyn is not antisemitic— Matt Zarb-Cousin (@mattzarb) March 26, 2018
So if you’ve joined the Labour Party because you think Corbyn’s support for the Palestinian people means for some reason he agrees with your antisemitism, you are so wrong.
There is the door 🚪
If you don’t walk out, I hope you’re kicked out asap
When Labour antisemitism means no-one’s talking about the crises in the NHS, social care, schools, the housing market, the police, the huge increase in homelessness & children in poverty, people dying waiting at A&E, food banks, your Russian money, the Brexit catastrofuck etc etc pic.twitter.com/NB5HwpBhwl— David Schneider (@davidschneider) March 26, 2018
Corbyn has denied the allegations made against him, releasing a statement on Sunday evening to make it “clear that I will not tolerate any form of anti-Semitism that exists in and around our movement,” he said. “We must stamp this out from our party and movement.”
“We recognise that anti-Semitism has occurred in pockets within the Labour Party, causing pain and hurt to our Jewish community in the Labour Party and the rest of the country. I am sincerely sorry for the pain which has been caused." He also said that Labour was campaigning “to increase support and confidence among Jewish people in the UK.”
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