JLM doesn’t support a Corbyn-led Labour Government!
The Jewish Labour Movement (JLM) over the past weekend has unanimously passed a resolution declaring Jeremy Corbyn to be unfit to be Prime Minister.
Britain is torn by a political and constitutional crisis. Brexit poses huge issues. If Britain were to leave without a deal - possibly in a few days’ time - the economy would be plunged into chaos. The terms of Britain’s exit from the European Union hang in the balance. Beneath the suppurating wound of the Brexit turmoil lie all the signs of a nation in crisis. Homelessness has doubled since 2010, the visible sign of the iceberg of desperate housing shortage and unaffordability. More than 4 million children live in poverty in Britain. Three million dwell in working households. This is all part of the bleak shadow of austerity poisoning the livelihoods of millions of working class people. They long for a Labour government as relief from their plight.
So what is the contribution of the JLM? Their resolution gives aid and comfort to the Tories in their hour of need. The last paragraph of the resolution reads:
“The JLM resolves:
· To make a proclamation stating that we have no confidence in Jeremy Corbyn and our belief that he is unfit to be Prime Minister.
· To not campaign for prospective Labour MPs, councillors or other candidates who are not allies in the fight against antisemitism in the Labour Party.”
The last statement is so vague that it is not at all clear who the JLM will actually work for in elections. Their statement makes it clear that they want the Tories to win and carry on as they have been doing.
The JLM is a small organisation. It is believed to have a few hundred members, a tiny percentage of Labour’s total membership of half a million. But they can do harm far beyond their numbers. Their resolution is intended to feed the allegations of ‘institutional antisemitism’ against Labour, and as such has been eagerly gobbled up by the Tory press.
The resolution is full of assertions without evidence - too many to refute. For instance it claims that, “Many of our members - and allies - have left the Party due to antisemitism, including our parliamentary chair, Luciana Berger, who was driven out of the Party.” Let us be clear. Luciana Berger left the Party of her own accord. In doing so she has let down the thousands of her constituents who voted for her as a Labour candidate. The effect of the creation of the ‘Independent Group’ of MPs of which she is a member will be to try to keep the Tories in office.
According to the Electronic Intifada the JLM was revived in 2015 specifically to combat Jeremy Corbyn, a longstanding supporter of the Palestinian cause. It is not antisemitism, but opposition to policies carried out by the state of Israel that are the issue. In response Asa Winstanley, the author of the article, has been suspended from the Labour Party.
The JLM is an affiliated organisation to the Labour Party. As such it can and does send delegates to local Parties. Yet it is campaigning to make a Labour government impossible! That is insupportable. The JLM must be disaffiliated as soon as possible.
· This article, like all the signed articles on our website, are the responsibility of the author alone. There has been criticism of some of the formulations. It is not our intention to offend readers unnecessarily, so we have changed them.
· It has been pointed out that the expression ‘stabbed in the back’ was used by Hitler and the Nazis to try to explain the German defeat in the First World War. Hitler was a notorious antisemite and he managed to blame Jewish people in part for the disaster. This was of course preposterous. All the same quoting Hitler, even inadvertently, is not good practice for a socialist organisation, so we are withdrawing the expression.
· The statement that Luciana Berger left the party of her own accord is quite correct. We have reported elsewhere that Luciana has been subject to antisemitic abuse, and that is a matter for sympathy and regret on our part.
But those who have racially abused her, and been convicted in the courts for it, are aligned with the far right. Though Luciana has accused Labour Party members of antisemitism she has never provided evidence. This is a pity since, if antisemitism exists within the Party, it should be rooted out.
· We stand by our criticism of the JLM, which is the main thrust of the article. All the LRC comrades who have read the article carefully can find no trace of antisemitism in it.