The Labour Party, the leadership, most members of the National Executive Committee have all accepted that antisemitism is a specific problem within the Labour Party. And yet, the Labour Party has acted in a deliberate and reckless manner in choosing to redefine antisemitism
Whilst they have accepted there is an antisemitisim problem, they have chosen to tackle it without any consultation with the Jewish community and their representative bodies. We await to see if any further ‘reviews’ change this.
The Labour Party has acted in a deliberate and offensive reckless manner in believing it understands the needs of a minority community better than the community itself. This is in the face of 68 British Rabbis who crossed religious divides to co-sign a letter, the Chief Rabbi, the Jewish community’s representative organisations, the Parliamentary Labour Party (following the steer of its Jewish colleagues) and international experts.
The MacPherson Report was clear that victims should be respectfully dealt with and communicated with. The Labour Party by acknowledging the problems, acknowledge that there must be victims, but fail to follow the well-established MacPherson principle.
The question over specifics within the new Code of Conduct and the IHRA definition are not theoretical as the Labour Party guidelines want to suggest. They are practical and urgent. People are attacked, physically and verbally in the street due to Israel related antisemitism. Jewish buildings across Europe are targets for bombings due to Israel related antisemitism and the dominant form of antisemitism within the British left is Israel related antisemitism.
Furthermore, for two years running, the Community Security Trust has recorded record levels of hate crime perpetrated against Jews. Historically such spikes only occur during sustained periods of conflict in the Middle East. There has been no specific war in the Middle East over the past two years and it has been suggested that the ever-present media coverage of antisemitism and British Jews, due to the Labour Party’s inability to deal with antisemitism within its ranks, has been an all too important contributor to the sustained period of increased antisemitic incidents.
This is not the same Party that wrote the Equalities Act and has proudly championed minorities. The impact on Jewish Labour activists has been unprecedented and severe. Rather than working with the Jewish community to solve this issue, the Labour Party have deliberately chosen to ignore those who know best, with no likelihood of this changing.