ABOUT CORBYN, an Op-Ed by our Director of Public Affairs

September 14, 2018

“Israel is a racist endeavour.” So, read the posters put up around bus shelters around London yesterday, and most prominently facing the Houses of parliament.

When the genie is out of the bottle, as anyone knows, it’s hard to get it back in. And when the Labour Party leader, Jeremy Corbyn spent weeks prevaricating, ducking and weaving to avoid signing up to the full IHRA definition of Anti-Semitism, fuelling his base of cocksure cult-like Palestinian sympathisers on the hard left, when the Labour Party eventually adopted the IHRA definition (with the underlined caveat that they can call out Israel), the base posted their response. 

From a self-proclaimed man of peace (despite his penchant for engaging and sympathising with the IRA, Hamas and who called Bin Laden’s death a tragedy) there’s a strong whiff of cordite around Corbyn and his acolytes. We British Jews knew it all along. The Labour leader has a track record of being outside the pale of political norms. It is precisely for his disgusting penchants that the hard left embraced him as their saviour and formed a messianic cult around him as the man to save Britain and the man to save the left.

What they really mean of course, is that he gave voice and credibility to their non-mainstream views, the type that had no place in any rational political discourse, and which hitherto put most of his support in the same political bin as the communists or St.George’s flag waving, shaven headed racists on the right.

The results are clear to see. “Nothing to see here” is the refrain from Labour as British Jews look on in horror. “He’s wrong and doesn’t get it” is the spin retort to Lord Sacks, the former Chief Rabbi and hugely respected voice of reason who pulled the alarm cord last week. 

“When people hear the kind of language that has been coming out of Labour, that’s been brought to the surface among Jeremy Corbyn’s earlier speeches, they cannot but feel an existential threat,” Sacks told the BBC. “Jews have been in Britain since 1656, I know of no other occasion in these 362 years when Jews – the majority of our community – are asking ‘is this country safe to bring up our children?'” he added. “Now, this is very, very worrying.” Worrying indeed. Almost 40 percent of British Jews would “seriously consider emigrating” if Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn became prime minister, according to a poll conducted for The Jewish Chronicle published on Wednesday.

Mr Corbyn made things personal. He stoked up his rabid base in ways that President Trump can only fantasize about, insults Jews day in day out by suggesting that we feel nobody can critique Israel (when most Jews have daily conversations about government and politics in the Jewish State), claims we lack of sense of humour and despite having lived there for generations, don’t get English Irony, then feigns mock indignation when there’s a backlash from the community. 

It’s sickening and reminds me of a scene I witnessed in Belfast, when a couple were arguing in front of a relative. The man struck the woman and she fell to the floor, and the lady with her started, quite understandably, screaming and crying. The man then turned to the woman who he had just struck who was still on the floor and exclaimed while pointing to the upset woman: “see what you’ve just done? You’ve upset your mother.” I can’t think of a better comparison for the odious leader of the Labour Party and his treatment of the Jewish Community in the UK when it comes to Israel. And doubtless just like the struck woman and her mother, Jews will not forget, nor forgive. Nor should we.  

Because “Israel is a racist endeavour” is but the veneer on the table of how British Labour sees Jews under Corbyn. The wood itself underneath is - make no mistake - riddled and rotten with anti-Semitism. And Corbyn is the carpenter to blame.

The Op-Ed was written by our director of public affairs, Alex Benjamin and was published on The JPost

Additional Articles

Meeting with Ambassador of Bosnia and Herzegovina to the EU, H.E. Madam Emina Merdan, and the Mission's Minister-Counselor, Ms. Miranda Sidran

Yesterday, the European Jewish Association has had the honour of welcoming at its headquarters the Ambassador of Bosnia and Herzegovina to the European Union, H.E. Madam Emina Merdan, and the Mission's Minister-Counselor, Ms. Miranda Sidran.

Her Excellency has presented the EJA's Chairman, Rabbi Menachem Margolin, the original of the Rosh Hashanah congratulatory letter received earlier from H.E. Dr. Denis Zvizdić, Chairman of the Council of Ministers of Bosnia and Herzegovina. H.E. Madam Ambassador has also expressed and conveyed H.E. Mr. Chairman's condolences regarding the Wednesday shooting near a synagogue in the German city of Halle, resulting in the tragic deaths of two people nearby.

During the meeting, we have in particular discussed Bosnia and Herzegovina: the country's tragic recent past, its modern European aspirations, the multicultural and multi-religious nature of its society as well as the local Jewish community, having its roots in the Sephardic Jews fleeing from Spain more than five centuries ago.

The Jewish community of Bosnia and Herzegovina, especially if compared to many others throughout Europe, is quite special - there have never been any ghettos here, with the Jews always having been considered an integral part of the local society, with no inherent Antisemitism carried by their neighbours and compatriots. While the modern Bosnian Jewish community is much smaller than it used to be, it is very active, while the heritage of Ladino is carefully preserved. In turn, established in 1997, the Interreligious Council of Bosnia and Herzegovina unites representatives of the Catholic and Orthodox Christians, Muslims and Jews - working together to build a better future.

Potential cooperation between the Mission and the EJA has also been discussed - both sides have expressed sincere interest in further dialogue and carefully exploring such possibilities of collaboration on topics of common interest and concern. We are very grateful to Her Excellency for this visit and wish H.E. Ambassador Merdan the best of luck and much energy in her important work.

Muslim journalist suspended from hosting German TV show over allegations of anti-Semitism

Josef Schuster, president of the Central Council of Jews in Germany, said WDR bears “a great responsibility not to present anyone on the screen who could spread hatred of Israel.”

By JNS
A Muslim journalist was axed from her pending position as a TV host for a German science program after allegations came forward about her past anti-Semitic activity, including participation in the pro-Iran, anti-Israel Al-Quds march in Berlin in 2014.
As reported by the pro-Israel daily Bild and other German outlets, politicians, activists and Jewish community members called on WDR, a public broadcasting station, not to give a platform to Nemi El-Hassan, a journalist and doctor, in light of evidence of anti-Semitic and anti-Israel words and deeds.
Josef Schuster, president of the Central Council of Jews in Germany, stated that WDR bears “a great responsibility not to present anyone on the screen who could spread hatred of Israel and anti-Semitism.”
Following the uproar, WDR suspended the 28-year old from participating in “Quarks” and said that it would examine the matter carefully. “The allegations against her are grave,” the station stated. “But it is also grave to deny a young journalist of professional development.”
El-Hassan has since disavowed her participation in the Al-Quds march, where she was photographed wearing a headscarf and a kaffiyeh. Following inquiries to WDR from Bild, her tweets with alleged anti-Semitic content have been removed.
In an interview with Germany’s Spiegel, the Lebanese-born El-Hassan said she doesn’t hate Israel and that her participation in the march, of which she knew little, simply provided an outlet for her to express solidarity with Palestinians. “That demo was definitely the wrong way to do that. I say that today very clearly.”
She also said that she has since moderated her Islamist views and has distanced herself from the conservative Islamic crowd that brought her to such a rally; she stopped wearing a headscarf in 2019. “I have many Jewish friends, and my best friend is gay,” she said in the interview.
The annual Al-Quds march has been a hot-button issue in Berlin.
Despite the urgings of Jewish community leaders, German authorities did not ban it outright, citing freedom of assembly, although it was heavily regulated against anti-Semitic expressions. Last year, however, the organizers canceled the march under the cover of coronavirus guidelines. Some argued the cancellation came under fear of the ban on Hezbollah in Germany.
https://ejpress.org/muslim-journalist-suspended-from-hosting-german-tv-show-over-allegations-of-anti-semitism/

MakeTheirMemoryShine’: clean-up operation of ‘Stolpersteine is on t.v:

Source: Rtbf evening news

Iceland adds Judaism to list of state-recognized religions, life-stance groups

Organizations recognized as representing a community may benefit from church tax which the government collects from every citizen
The Interior Ministry of Iceland has added Judaism to its list of state-recognized religious and life-stance groups.
The move earlier this year means that Icelandic Jews may register themselves and their children as belonging to the country’s Jewish community, Chabad.org reported Thursday.
Organizations recognized by the state as representing a community may benefit from Iceland’s church tax, which the government collects from each person older than 16. It’s about $100 annually. Iceland has about 200 Jews.
The country has about 50 recognized religious groups. Church tax collected from those who are not registered as belonging to one of those groups goes toward the promotion of higher education and science.
“When we moved to Iceland, we knew that recognition was important to our community, and we were determined to make it happen,” Rabbi Avi Feldman, the Chabad-Lubavitch emissary to Iceland, told Chabad.org. “This is a story decades in the making.”
Feldman and his wife, Mushky, moved to Iceland in 2018.
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