I’ve been looking at Twitter, just to see what people have been Tweeting to Ivan Lewis, because rumour has it that the antisemites are out.
I don’t much like Twitter because of the way it makes everything so rude. Benign words nearly always turn all confrontational and insulting by the time they reach their destination. Something dark happens twixt keyboard and Twittersphere. You should be able to see the transition taking place before your very eyes as the message flies through space. But you can’t. Maybe if you looked through a powerful telescope? (from NASA?)
Not that there were many benign words on Ivan Lewis’s Twitter feed when I looked at it yesterday - or maybe it was the day before.
The antisemites are out, as the man said.
See below Craig’s post on this topic, someone has commented:
“Oh please! This is complete supposition, and you claim that the BBC biased.”
More of a Tweet than a comment, perhaps, because it’s very brief and because it implies something and says nothing at the same time.
Craig's article was concise too, but it was factual, not suppositional at all. Admittedly the sentiment had an implication. If I really need to spell it out, the speculation was about the reason Jeremy Corbyn sacked Ivan Lewis, who is Jewish. Was it because he had queried Corbyn’s record on antisemitism, or that he was sacked simply because Corbyn did not want a Jew on his team? (He has one now of course. Luciana Berger, a woman. Two birds with one stone if you like.)
The speculation about all that, which others have articulated much more explicitly than Craig, is certainly justified because of the nature of several of Corbyn’s notorious activities and affiliations. There is very good reason to speculate, and that’s all it is. Just look at the Tweets, and the comments on pro-Palestinian websites, organisations that Jeremy Corbyn supports. Antisemitism is alive and flourishing in PSC world.
A few of Corbyn’s followers did say “There is no place for antisemitism in Labour”, but that is wishful thinking rather than fact. Unfortunately there is a place for antisemitism - in Labour, Lib Dem, Conservative, Ukip and all other parties in between. Oh yes, and the Greens.
Let’s zoom in on some familiar Jew-bashing themes. The faux pedants who keep saying “Arabs are semites too.” By deconstructing the meaning of ‘antisemitism’, and querying the accepted usage of that word, they’re trying to nullify its racist meaning and avoid publicly owning up to their own hatred.
The other word that has fallen victim of toxification by Jew-bashers is the term ‘Zionism’. That word also has a definition:
“a movement for the re-establishment and the development and protection of a Jewish nation in what is now Israel. It was established as a political organisation in 1897 under Theodor Herzl, and was later led by Chaim Weizmann.”
Only antisemites and fanatical internationalists oppose the principle of a Jewish homeland. A place of safety for Jews; how ironic that antisemitism is ultimately what makes Israel necessary.
The other Jew-bashing theme is “Anti-Zionism is not antisemitism”. Yes it is. Criticism of the Israeli government or specific criticism of Israel’s policies is not the same as anti-Zionism. Israelis do it all the time.
Anti-Zionism is denouncing Israel as illegitimate, accusing it of being a racist state, a terrorist state, an apartheid state and insisting it has no business calling itself a Jewish state. People from Islamic states are the most insistent on that point. All that is antisemitic. Make no mistake, as auctioneers say.
Of course there are plenty of people who hate Israel because they’ve been seduced by a distorted version of history. They have chosen to believe the myths and fancies based on antisemitic Arab propaganda. They know there’s another version of ‘truth’ out there, but they’re not interested in finding out what it is.
Jeremy Corbyn is an internationalist according to Frank Field, so presumably he would like all borders to be torn down. He is also a pacifist, therefore he advocates non-retaliation. No wonder he doesn’t support Israel. If he opposes the existence of the state of Israel and doesn’t believe in the need for a Jewish homeland, even in the light of the antisemitism he witnesses, much of it from his own supporters, then is it surprising that there was speculation about the dismissal of a Jewish MP, particularly when the choice of experienced ministers willing to serve under his leadership had shrunk from small to negligible?