Numerous newspapers have picked up on the ‘Palestine Live’ Facebook group that the Labour Leader, the Rt Hon. Jeremy Corbyn, had once been a participant within. The Labour Party has also moved to suspend members of the secretive group according to Ha’aretz and the issue is not going to go away particularly when so many within Jewish communities are feeling very uneasy with regular reports of anti-Semitic discourse from some within the Labour Party.
Furthermore, the level of mistrust from Jewish communities towards the Labour leadership has sharply risen and this is something that is particularly concerning, given that the Labour Party has historically been at the vanguard of tackling and countering anti-Semitism for decades. Trade Union movements and other Labour affiliated grass-roots movements have made a point of challenging hatred, racism and bigotry where they found it.
However, of late, that gulf between Jewish communities and the Labour Party continues to become a gaping chasm. Reports by David Collier on the ‘Palestine Live’ Facebook page paint a devastating picture of anti-Semitic discussions within the group and full details of the reports can be found here and here.
The Labour Party has been quick to issue denials around the activity of the Opposition Leader and have stated that he did not mention anything within the social media group that was anti-Semitic in nature.
In all of this, the Palestinian cause of self-determination is not assisted by those who sit in the United Kingdom and who support the cause of Palestine by promoting anti-Semitic discourse. This also goes for those who couch their anti-Semitism through the liberal sprinkling of the term ‘Zionist’, a term also used against those who work with Jewish communities and who are from Muslim communities.
The cause of Palestine has sadly been hijacked by many, including Islamist extremists and anti-Semites, who have both done a dis-service to Palestinians, and to many other communities. Such individuals and groups must be called out and held to account, since in the end, they help no-one but promote poison within the heart of communities.