General Antisemitism

Gerald Kaufman: back to antisemitic basics

Cross posted from the blog of the CST

The antisemitic charge that Jewish money controls British politicians is old and well-known. This is what it looks like:

It is an ugly charge and an ugly image, which is why nowadays it is usually expressed as “Zionist” or “pro-Israeli” money. This is what it looks like: 

Sir Gerald Kaufman MP is more old school. The Father of the House is Jewish, so he believes he can say what others can only think, telling a Palestine Return Centre meeting in Parliament on 27 October

“…Martin wonders why this government’s policy has gone farther and farther and more and more pro-Israeli: so I’ll tell you, because I can tell you in a way which perhaps nobody else in this room can tell you. It’s Jewish money, Jewish donations, to the Conservative Party as in the General Election in May, support from the Jewish Chronicle, all of those things, bias the Conservatives.”

Whether Kaufman is antisemitic or not is barely relevant here. He has said numerous objectionable things before and what goes on in his head is his business. He used to be a relatively important politician who was broadly pro-Israel and pro-Zionist. Now, he is none of those things, but as honorary Father of the House (Parliament’s most veteran MP), his actions cannot be ignored.  

A previous Father of the House, Tam Dalyell MP (Labour), blamed Tony Blair’s Iraq war on a “cabal of Jewish advisors”. His comments were largely dismissed as ludicrous and unworthy of comment. The idea that Jews sent British troops to die on Israel’s behalf was left festering. Dalyell denied antisemitism, but said the situation demanded him to be “candid”.

Now, British Jews will want to see a candid response from today’s Labour Party to Kaufman. On its own, his “Jewish money” and “Jewish donations” comments invite antisemitic interpretation. Coming after the words, “I can tell you in a way which perhaps nobody else in this room can”, the comments are begging antisemitic interpretation.

This occurs within two important contexts:

  • Widespread Jewish communal concern regarding the new Labour Party leadership’s attitude to both antisemitism and Israel. (Two separate, but intricately connected issues.) 
  • Current tension between Israelis and Palestinians of exactly the sort that may yet trigger a serious antisemitic outburst here in the UK. (As has previously happened when overseas tensions blow the lid off the antisemitic pressure cooker.)

Kaufman’s statement was made in the presence of Andrew Slaughter MP, Labour shadow minister for Human Rights. Slaughter did not object, but subsequently distanced himself when approached by the Jewish Chronicle for comment.

Also present and not objecting was former Labour MP, Martin Linton, who in 2010 witnessed Kaufman say:

“Just as Lord Ashcroft owns most of the Conservative Party, right-wing Jewish millionaires own the rest”. 

At the same 2010 meeting, Linton (then an MP) had said:

“There are long tentacles of Israel in this country who are funding election campaigns and putting money into the British political system for their own ends.” 

Linton subsequently apologised for using the word “tentacles”, saying “I’m sorry if a word I used caused unintended offence because of connotations of which I was unaware”.

Nobody is unaware of the connotations of what Kaufman said in this latest meeting. It does not get clearer than “Jewish money” and “Jewish donations”.  For this reason, CST has joined with our communal partners, the Board of Deputies of British Jews, and the Jewish Leadership Council, in writing to Labour’s Chief Whip Rosie Winterton MP, copying party leader Jeremy Corbyn MP, to request that “swift and appropriate disciplinary action” be taken. This is not an action that we take lightly, but as with the situation that prevailed with the Liberal Democrats concerning David Ward, it is now a necessity.  

23 replies »

  1. “He used to be a relatively important politician” – hardly. He was always – and was always regarded by sensible people as – a total useless arsehole.
    Much like Dalyell, in fact.
    I am sure all parties have insane MPs, but Labour does seem to collect them like stamps. One might be an unfortunate accident, but a dozen is beginning to look like carelessness. Or worse.

  2. CST didn’t mention the blood libel spouted by Kaufman at the same meeting. Why not? Do they agree or only they are cowards who are being afraid to use the word Israel? I vote the latter.

  3. It is a pity that long serving MPs don’t have to submit themselves to a dementia test before being permitted to carry on serving their constituents. Kaufman gives the impression that he is in need of help these days. I suppose that it is just possible that he could find a gentile psychiatrist not tainted by any Hebrew connections. Like many who go off their trolleys GK just spouts assertions that are unsubstantiated except in his head and in the heads of his acolytes.

    • But of course Stephen. Are you so ignorant and never heard about the Worldwide Zionist Conspiracy? You should reread your copy of the Protocols in order to avoid making naive remarks concerning facts well known for every Jew-haters…

    • Stephen, you’re just another incarnation of trolls who provide stupidity as their lone cannon fodder. Did your mama drop you on the head when you were a kid? Or was it that your mama didn’t love you enough, and it’s the Jews fault?

      Poor Stephen’s Mama. No matter what she did to you, I doubt anyone really cares. You’re your own asshole, Asshole.

    • Stephen, Wundermutt from Uranus, is going to bring the Palestinians peace by insulting one Jew at a time on one Israeli centric website at a time. It’s times like these when the Palestinian people and their most ardent supporters show the world that they don’t have to pull themselves but by their own bootstraps. They just need to wallow in shit, and thereby obtain sympathy for their general ineptitude. Viva la Palestinian people! Viva la Bullshit!

    • “Maybe but what about justice?”

      I’ll take this to mean that Stephen wants to go back to the “good old days” when you could rape, rob and murder Jews whenever your world starts to fall apart. Israel acts as a barrier to this lawlessness, therefore it must be weakened and done away with, by feigning “humanitarian concern” for Palestine Arabs, as if there weren’t actual historic peoples in world with far worse problems.

  4. What’s with the “This is not an action that we take lightly, …” ?
    Why didn’t they take it sooner? What the blazes were they waiting for?

    • You are correct. Kaufman as every other Jew-hater and crooked politician thinks only about how to keep up emptying the public coffers buying crystal bowls and home-movie system on the taxpayers expense. In order to be able to do this he must lick the ass of his Jew-hating electorate. Why should he be interested in the concerns of the CST? They won’t vote for him anyway…

    Palestinian society is truly sick
    November 10, 2015

    Today, 2 children – a 12-year old and a 13-year old – stabbed an Israeli at a light rail station in Jerusalem.

    What causes a 12-year old to want to risk his life just to have a chance at wounding a Jew?

    Incitement is part of the problem, but it is not the main issue.

    True, Palestinian news outlets and social media are filled with photos, videos, songs and cartoons that all advocate murder and terror, images that make heroes of the attackers and that dehumanize the victims.

    But to truly understand the sickness that is Palestinian society, you need to look beyond the words and images and music. You need to look at what is not being said.

    You will not find any examples of people telling children not to attack Jews. You won’t find any stories of parents who try to raise their kids to respect all human beings. You will not find any stories about Israeli victims. You will not see anything about teachers telling their students that their lives are too valuable to waste on randomly stabbing people. You won’t find anyone saying that murder is bad no matter who does it.

    You won’t find a single voice opposed to the current wave of children sacrificing themselves for a chance to stab Jews.

    If there has been any opposition to children stabbing Jews in Palestinian Arab media, I have yet to see a single example. On the contrary, the stories are neutral at best and often cheerileading – and then using Israeli efforts to protect themselves as reason to encourage more attacks.

    I am not saying that Palestinian Arabs are all united in their support for sending their children out on suicide missions. I have no doubt that most parents are aghast at the idea that their kids might join the fad.

    But because of the sick nature of Palestinian society, publicly coming out against terror is simply not possible. There is far more fear of saying anything against the politically-correct message of supporting terror than there is of the “oppressive occupation” itself.

    By any measure, Palestinian Arabs are better off than their neighbors in Egypt or Jordan. They consider checkpoints to be the height of oppression while hundreds of thousands of their neighbors are being slaughtered. Their society is based on victimhood, not on overcoming obstacles.

    There are independent media outlets in the territories – but none of them to my knowledge have been the least bit critical of the violence. Instead, they are filled with articles and op-eds supporting it and attacking Israel for defending themselves.

    There are no contrarian voices, meaning that the message of terror is unopposed.

    No one will point out this sickness. Arabs cannot say it out loud for fear of being labeled Zionist. The mainstream media cannot say it out loud for fear of being labeled racist or biased. So the real elephant in the room – that Palestinian society itself is the reason peace is impossible – cannot be discussed.

    Incitement is bad enough. But the utter lack of any opposing viewpoints is what shows that Palestinian society is rotten to the core.