Facebook Video Embed

Why British Jews are worried by Jeremy Corbyn - and what does election portend for Americans?

What will neo-Left antisemitism portend for Jewish-Americans (and Christian Zionists) in 2020?

Why British Jews Are Worried by Jeremy Corbyn

Has denying the reality of anti-Semitism become a left-wing loyalty test? By Helen Lewis in The Atlantic December 11, '19
Jeremy Corbyn and Boris Johnson debate
It is an astonishing statistic: Some 87 percent of British Jews believe that Jeremy Corbyn—one of two men who could be prime minister in a few days’ time—is anti-Semitic. How did we get here? Corbyn’s party, Labour, has strong connections with the Jewish community, dating back to its earliest days. Yet a deep distrust has developed between the two since he became Labour leader in 2015, and the issue has dogged Corbyn throughout this election campaign. . . .
At the same time, the other plausible candidate to be the next prime minister—the Conservative leader, Boris Johnson—has faced his own questions over his use of racial epithets and his attitudes toward minorities. Racism directed at faith communities in Britain has therefore become a deeply partisan left/right issue: Any mention of “Labour anti-Semitism” is met with cries of “Tory Islamophobia.” ... 
Yet the question of anti-Semitism is also divisive within the left. Jewish voters I spoke with over the past several weeks told me of feeling as though the entire community had been “gaslit”—that the reality of anti-Semitism was being minimized by the party leadership—and that denying this reality had become a way to demonstrate loyalty to Corbyn and his radical anti-austerity agenda. This feeling is aggravated by persistent suggestions from the hard left that anti-Semitism is merely the pretext for a “smear campaign” against Corbyn and the left in general.
Britain’s Jewish community is small, about 284,000 people, or about 0.5 percent of the population, and heavily concentrated in a few areas of North London. That means many incidents that are widely noted by British Jews—such as Corbyn’s over-pronunciation of Jeffrey Epstein’s name as “Ep-schtein” in a televised debate—go unnoticed by the wider population.
A Survation poll found that 39 percent of Britons overall believe Corbyn is anti-Semitic. While that is still a remarkably high number, it is far short of the consensus that has formed among Jews.  The gulf has exacerbated the sense that their concerns are not being treated seriously by the rest of the population. As Britain’s chief rabbi, Ephraim Mirvis, wrote in The Times: “Just a few weeks before we go to the polls, the overwhelming majority of British Jews are gripped by anxiety. The question I am now most frequently asked is: What will become of Jews and Judaism in Britain if the Labour Party forms the next government?”

British orthodox Rabbi Lionel Rosenfeld of The Western/Marble Arch Synagogue, returned for the AIPAC Policy Conference in D.C. this spring with a dire warning to North Americans regarding the Socialist/Islamist influence in the Labour and Democratic Parties in the UK and the US.    

Question: We have had a year of the Labour Party getting closer to office and - what's the condition of Zionism and Zionists in the political zeitgeist in Britain today, in the UK today?  

Answer: Well I don't know if you heard the Labour MP Joan Ryan on Sunday evening Labour Friends of Israel. She's not even Jewish  - she was almost crying because what's happened to the Labour Party is really is what's happened to Zionism in the country. It's just tragic. We're on a downhill slope from last year when I spoke to you.  We have a Conservative government that is sleepwalking towards Brexit with no real discernible leadership. Everyone agrees on that and we, on the other hand, we have a Labour possible government who haven't really increased in the polls. 

Normally with them they would be miles ahead - but they're not because of this man, Corbyn. Because of his refusal to eject antisemites from his party, and because of the general fear of so many Jews in Britain that anti--semitism is taking a real hold on what was a great supporter of the State of Israel, the Labour Party.   

Question: Hasn't the Jewish community in the UK traditionally been a liberal-minded politically?  

Answer:  Very much so. Very much like the Jews of United States of America, great Democratic supporters - so have - I mean I happen to know that many of great rabbis have been quietly Labour supporters but not anymore. How can they be? Labour does not have any of the values that we espouse.  

Question: Particularly with regard to the Middle East and the growth of the spread of anti-semitism in Europe? Answer: Particularly with that. And also because they condemn the United States and Israel as two colonialist powers and that's how they see the world. It's becoming a left Marxist party that no one wants to touch with a bargepole, as you would say.

Question: And when you say Marxism, do you mean the beginnings of Socialism leading to Communism?

Answer: The people who are now running the Labour Party want to eject all previous Labour members of parliament
who had an idea that Tony Blair was the correct leader the new Labour are you as it used to be which was so successful and popular. They want them all out! They want to start again! 


Question: What was the psychological adjustment that it took for Liberal British Jews to say that this this party which I've voted reflexively for so long to be able to say "I'm going to vote against them now"

Answer: Because of the way they treated first of all the Jewish MPs who are in the Labour Party. And and of all the tweets and the terrible anti-semitic slurs against them. And they realized now that we are in a very toxic atmosphere politically and they don't know what to do!

No one really wants to leave and go on aliyah that's they have no intention of leaving Britain - this idea that Jews are going to be leaving Britain. I don't think it's going to happen. We just have to fight to make sure that the Conservative Party comes to its senses and can win this general election.


Question: Is the Jewish population of Britain - are they supporting the Conservatives now against Labour?

Answer: I would think there's very few Jews that I know that would vote Labour in the next general election. How can
they when they are controlled by a small clique of left-wing, previous Marxists and Communists?

No comments: