It is completely dispiriting to read comments all over the blogosphere stating that all the fuss and furore over Labour’s antisemitism problem will make little or no difference. Not to the party itself, not to the thousands of new members, not to the voters, not to anyone.
The media is already losing interest. The debate in the HoC has come and gone. Corbyn has “chuntered” and mumbled, has walked out of the debate during some of the most impassioned speeches, has been heckled, has refused to participate in the debate himself, has stymied a forthcoming meeting with the mainstream Jewish community by insisting that the Jewish antisemitism-denying faction is present to shield him from reality, and is sitting tight until the fuss dies down. Which it will.
The media bears a huge responsibility for this state of affairs. Although the debate was impressive and emotional, much of it was irrelevant. Certainly the speeches by the Jewish and non Jewish MPs who had been bullied and abused online, them and their families threatened with rape or murder were affecting. But the only speech that got to the nub was one that hardly anyone else has highlighted. So I’ll do it here.
"There is the frequent demonisation - the unique demonisation of the State of Israel, which happens only to the Jewish State. No other comparison happens wit any other country in the world. the boycott, divestment and sanctions campaign represents a unique attack on Israel, and lends itself not just to anti Zionism but also to antisemitism. It is the attempted isolation of Israel through commerce, academia, and through culture.
Isn’t it incredible, that we would seek to isolate Israel to stop businessmen and women, to stop academics and to stop artists and musicians working in and working with the State of Israel. Increasingly Jews in Europe are leaving for Israel; we must deal with antisemitism in Britain before British Jews fee they have to leave our land."
All the fuss about the washed-out has-been Ken Livingstone is a distraction. Yes, chuck him out. Suspend him definitely. Get him sectioned. I don’t care. But deal with the BBC’s one-sided, anti-Israel reporting or you’ll never ever rid the Labour Party or the political left of antisemitism.