Monday, October 05, 2009

Why is anti-semitism rising in Britain?

Since the Labour came to power in 1997, anti-semitism has been on the rise in Britain, which has markedly risen in the past couple of years, particularly in the Hendon Constituency where I used to live. This has not been helped by the lack of support that the Labour Government has shown for tackling anti-semitism and possibly even encouraged, such as during the 2005 General election with their anti semitic campaign posters.

However, last week the Labour Party led by the Foreign Secretary, David Miliband and the Director of Labour Friends of Israel, Luciana Berger, tried to accuse the Conservative Party of joining-up with anti-semitic parties in the European Parliament. This is obviously one of their last efforts to try and win the election in Hendon and Golders Green. However, the allies are not anti-semitic but are just trying to reduce the EU'S domination of national sovereignty, supported by the majority of the public in Britain.

Instead of trying to make false accusations of anti-semitism, maybe Luciana Berger should be supporting Israel by attacking the two Labour Cabinet Ministers who are anti-zionist and arguably anti-semitic.

Ben Bradshaw, Secretary of State for Culture, earlier this year was clearly anti-semitic when he accused Israel of having a "long reputation of bullying the BBC". While John Denham, Secretary of State for Communities, according to the Jewish Cronicle has a long history of being hostile to Israel and has often supported Islamic extremists such as the Muslim Council of Britain.

So Luciana, maybe instead of creating false accusations, you should start critising Cabinet Minsters in your own party who make anti-semitic comments because of their hatred of Israel.


Luciana Berger said...


So quick are you to try and deflect, you didn't actually read my post properly.

I didn't say the parties your Conservatives have joined up with in Europe are anti-semitic - your own Edward McMillan-Scott, now former Tory MEP, said that. He was expelled by your party for rightly questioning the extreme alliances the Conservatives are making in Europe.

It was John Mann and Denis MacShane, Labour MPs no less, who set up the Parliamentary Committee against Antisemitism. And it is a Labour government who is working across government to implement the recommendations of that committee's report. Far from showing a lack of support to the British Jewish Community, it's a Labour government who has been committed right from the very centre to combatting anti-semitism in the UK.

I find your comments about the MCB, Ben Bradshaw and John Denham extremely distasteful. They may not support Israel but that doesn't make them anti-semitic.


Richard Weider said...


Your post made clear that you and the Foreign Secretary together with the other Labour Members are trying to link the Conservative Party to a Polish politician who you accuse to be anti-semitic.

As Stephen Pollard, the Editor of the JC makes clear, the remarks made about the Polish politician are misrepresented, and he is not anti-semitic.

This is unlike the two Labour Cabinet Minister and the MCB, who through their clear hatred of Israel, (which sadly seems to be quite widespread in the Labout Movement)sometimes make comments which can be viewed as anti-semitic and so encourage anti-semitism by extremists in Britain.

John Mann and Dennis Macshane have done good things, bad sadly the Labour Government has implemented too little too reduce anti-semitism.

Don't Call Me Dave said...


I recently resigned my membership of Westminster Conservatives following publication of an article in their Blueprint magazine which said:

“We have great concern about the tragic situation endured by the Palestinian people in the occupied Arab territories as a result of Israeli policies and practices that contravene international and humanitarian law. Make no mistake, this issue and the continuation of Israel’s actions is the core reason behind the instability that faces our region.”

Both Labour and the Conservatives have “Friends of Israel” groups and, equally, both parties have supporters who are anti Israel, anti-Semitic or both.

There are many Conservatives who are deeply troubled by our party’s new alignment in the EU. Cameron was right to get out of the EPP alliance, but I fear he has jumped out of the frying pan and into the fire.

Danny Stone said...


your post is both incorrect and unfair.

1. Working for an All Party Group, I can tell you that all parties have been instrumental in fighting Antisemitism in the UK - that stands as much for Government as opposition. The FCO is a world leader (and certainly a leader in Europe), not only in rolling out the All-Party model but in the reporting facilities established to update on the fight against Antisemitism. The action Government took on the inquiry has been encouraging - there is a cross-departmental task force working on Antisemitism - this is unique, i believe, yet to be repeated by any other country. Your post has no factual basis. There are plenty more examples I could give to prove you wrong.

2. Dont be so naive to think that this is some campaign just to get votes in Hendon and Finchley - Europe is and has been a pan-British issue for some time now. Who one hangs out with in Europe is rightly scrutinised - bet you wouldnt be so quick to react like this if it were the BNPs credentials being questioned in another country eh?..

3. Whilst Denham and Bradshaw may have strong views on Israel, you clearly have not grasped the line between harsh or even unfair criticism of Israel and Antisemitism. I am happy to break this down for you - but dont go labelling cabinet Ministers when you have nothing to back up what you say. Denham for one has been quite clear about Islamist Extremism, far right activity and inter-communal relations.

4. Your aggressive accusation against Luciana is both unfair and unnecessary. Picking on someone who works hard for her organisation and has a personal interest in such matters is out of line. Challenge her yes, but the accusatory nature of your post is rather unpleasant.

Danny Stone
Director, All Party Group Against Antisemitism.

Luciana Berger said...


Please don't put words in my mouth.

For the record, I didn't accuse Kaminski of being anti-semitic, this is what I said:

"The ECR is being lead by the controversial polish MEP Michal Kaminski. Whether or not he should be judged now for having belonged to the extreme nationalist National Revival of Poland organisation in his teens, he has said and done in enough in adulthood to put him beyond the pale: he has hailed General Pinochet, made anti-Gay remarks and denied Polish complicity in the massacre of Jews in wartime Poland.

This is not just the view of the Jewish community and the Labour movement. Former leader of the Tory MEP s, Edward McMillan-Scott, was expelled from the Conservative party a few weeks ago for confronting the true nature of the Tories’ new European partners. McMillan-Scott didn’t mince his words when he exposed Kaminski’s “antisemitic, homophobic and racist links”."

(which can be found on my blog:

Stephen Pollard may have made some comments in defence of Kaminski - he doesn't address some other points I raise in my post.

And please don't forget, this is not just about Kaminski, but all the new bedfellows the Tories have joined in the new ECR, including the Latvians and Czechs too.


Robert Cooper said...

I remember studying with you in Birmingham. I found your blog when just searching around for JFS quotes as I was just looking forward to tomorrow's Supreme Court case.
Did you write more on JFS, since the case in July. There is more to say. I wonder if you will follow up your blog?

I then spotted the name of Luciana Berger, who I remember as a friend from years ago. So I read your recent blog post about anti-semitism. And I feel a need to comment here. Why are you so aggressive about it? Why are you jumping to an accusation of anti-semitism in Labour members of parliament? Accusing someone of anti-semitism is a serious thing. Also, you're living in Israel, why are you so bothered about it?

So, are you working at the moment on something that links you to the current UK political process. It doesn't say on your profile that you have a job like that. Frankly, I'm surprised Luciana and others bothered to get back to you on a UK issue - considering you've now left the country anyway.