Labour Party members in Enfield North have called for the expulsion of their MP, due to what they see as behaviour that was disloyal to the party during the 2017 general election campaign.
But Joan Ryan is also the chair of Labour Friends of Israel. Will so-called campaigners against anti-Semitism seek to use this as a stick to beat Jeremy Corbyn?
As a candidate, Ms Ryan distanced herself from Labour and its leader, Jeremy Corbyn. She did not use the party logo on her leaflets and claimed in a letter to voters that “many” local people “tell me they have more confidence in Theresa May as prime minister than they would have in Jeremy Corbyn.”
Despite “your misgivings about the Labour leadership,” she wrote, “I hope that you will consider voting for me as your local MP [member of Parliament].”
She also declared she had an “independent-minded” record, saying she would “continue to work” for a changed Labour Party – implying that she would keep trying to remove Mr Corbyn.
In line with most opinion polls, Ms Ryan expected Theresa May’s Conservatives to return to office with a much larger majority – grossly underestimating the popularity of both Mr Corbyn and the campaign he ran.
This nationwide surge in support for Mr Corbyn, coupled with an influx of activists in her own constituency, meant Ms Ryan benefited from Labour’s new popularity. She was returned to Parliament with an increased majority.
According to the Electronic Intifada, “some of these grassroots activists were local, while others came from surrounding areas, having been advised by an online campaign tool that Ryan’s seat was in danger of being lost to the ruling Conservative Party, due to her small majority. The tool was provided by Momentum, a group set up after Corbyn became party leader in 2015, to capitalize on the popular movement supporting him.”
The formal complaint by 24 Enfield Labour members states that Ms Ryan breached Labour Party rules stating that to “remain eligible for membership, each individual member must … accept and conform to the constitution, program, principles and policy of the party.”
Ms Ryan’s election letter disavowed the party, “choosing to omit the Labour Party logo” and dissociated herself “from the party leadership,” the complaint says, criticising her for apparently placing her letter “into the public domain” from which it “rapidly migrated to the national media where it was widely exploited” in an attempt to damage Mr Corbyn.
The complaint does not mention Ms Ryan’s history of support for Israel.
But it is known that, as chair of Labour Friends of Israel, Ms Ryan has been a vocal opponent of Mr Corbyn, who supports the Palestine Solidarity Campaign. The week after the general election, despite having Mr Corbyn’s supporters to thank for her own increased majority, Ms Ryan called on him to cut his ties with the PSC to prove Labour is a “credible party of government.”
She also threatened to revive the anti-Semitism witch-hunt within the Labour Party which, again according to the Electronic Intifada, “engulfed Labour last year, when dozens of members were suspended without due process, often based on grossly exaggerated or entirely fabricated charges.”
(This Writer can confirm that other activists, claiming to be fighting anti-Semitism, have not stopped trying to undermine genuine Labour members and supporters – I was suspended from the party in May, based on fabricated claims by an organisation called the Campaign Against Antisemitism.)
Ms Ryan herself is on record as having fabricated an accusation of anti-Semitism against a Palestine solidarity campaigner who had challenged her on Israel’s settlement activities in the occupied West Bank. She accused the campaigner of invoking “classic anti-Semitic tropes” about Jews in banking – but video evidence proved that the activist did not.
Soon after the incident at the Labour conference in September 2016, Ms Ryan alleged that her Labour Friends of Israel stall had been the victim of anti-Semitic attacks.
So there is a lot of evidence against her. But this case seems alarmingly similar to that of Luciana Berger, only a few days ago.
Ms Berger, who had resigned from the shadow cabnet in 2016 in a bid to undermine Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership, had faced demands for an apology and display of loyalty for the Labour leader after his election campaign left the Conservatives without a Parliamentary majority – and she did, in fact, provide such assurances.
But commentators including the Jewish Chronicle accused Momentum of anti-Semitism, as Ms Berger is Jewish.
In my own article on this matter, I urged: “Read that paper’s article. It acknowledges that the comments were not made by a Momentum member – but still attacks the organisation for anti-Semitism.”
How long will it be before Enfield Labour faces the same accusations?
All of the above seems to corroborate Tony Greenstein’s allegation – made in his blog on June 20 – that the pro-Israeli lobby in the Labour Party was set to launch another spate of anti-Semitism allegations.
He wrote: “They are trying to relaunch the false ‘anti-Semitism’ campaign in the hope of dividing the Party, sowing dissent and providing succour to the Tories. False anti-Semitism and false victimhood are their chosen strategy.
“It is essential that if there is a further round of false ‘anti-Semitism’ allegations that Jeremy Corbyn stands firm and calls it out.”
Yes it is. Let us hope he does so – but in a way that defuses the allegations and leaves the false accusers with nowhere to go.
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I’ve no doubt it will be labelled antisemitic. It seems to be getting quite fashionable that despite all the inquiries, and statements that antisemitism is unacceptable in the LP, there are yet some people who still insist that being against Israeli government policy = antisemitism. And that if a word is spoken, however justified against an MP who supports Israeli government policy, this is also antisemitism.
Whatever her views on this are, she needs to be recognised as someone who basically stood as an independent, disassociating herself from the leadership and not a loyal member of the LP, so perhaps that should be her career path.
SEMITES ARE ARABS NOT OFF WHITE JEWISH OCCUPIERS , WHEN IS SOMEONE GOING TO SHOUTOUT THAT THIS ANTI SEMITC CARD IS THAT IS A CON GAME
“Off white Jewish occupiers”?
Look it up in a dictionary and you’ll see it mentions any race that formerly spoke a semitic language.
Now, though, it has come to mean Jewish people. I know that’s hard for some to accept but it’s the way our own language has changed.
Have you been to Palestine ? im a celt with jewish blood and i am ashamed of what i have seen there , you look up facts even one senior jewih member of the knesstr state anri semitisn is a card the Zionis play ,, Israelis ignore all that does not agree with The Rothschilds version of history ,,,no Atkhanzi jews have even a strand of original Semite Israeli DNA ther come feom Europe not the middle East some Turks and Iranians are more old blood than the ones that Palestinians first welcomed , rest are settlers and if you met those you would feel genuine disguist
I’ve been debating whether to publish this without comment and let the Zionists tear you apart – but I think that would be unfair.
Your mention of the Rothschilds, and of Ashkenazi Jews as being somehow fake, will undoubtedly arouse their ire.
Personally, I don’t think you should mix race with religion. We don’t consider the only true Christians to belong to a limited group of families originally based around the eastern Mediterranean, after all. It doesn’t matter to me whether a person can follow their ancestry back to the 12 tribes or joined the religion recently – if they follow Judaism, then they are Jewish.
That being said, of course I agree that Israeli politicians are happy to accuse others of anti-Semitism in order to confuse reactions to their political decisions with racism. And Israeli occupation of land that legally belongs to Palestinians is an ongoing outrage.
Again, why it should be done with. What other people has its own form of discrimination recognised? Racism is racism is racism and should be called thus. The further we divide ourselves, the more hatred will breed.
I dearly hope that these snakes are deselected by their local local labour partys
Take the whip away from her. She is a menace.
How come no one is ever accused of being Anti Palestinian, or would that count as being Pro Semitic.
She’s got to go. If she had such a crisis of conscience over the Labour leader, who was elected not once, but twice, by the membership, then she should have done the decent thing and stood as an independent, instead of riding on the coat-tails of grass-root activists who will have undoubtedly contributed to her increased majority.
But I also I wonder if any members of Labour Friends of Israel are quietly breathing a sigh of relief at potentially losing a chair who is such a terrible ambassador for their organisation.
As a member of the Labour Party I would support her expulsion on the grounds of disloyalty and an inability to “accept and conform to the constitution, program, principles and policy of the party”. Not only is she unable to do so, she wears her opposition like a badge of honour. Time to set her free from the burden of being in a party she so obviously despises.
All of those who dislike the leadership and the direction in which the Party is going claim that the Party is theirs and that they love it and that it is their responsibility, nay, duty to rescue it!
The Zionists cant tear wet papper bags to shreds when faced down by them , the plain TRUTH is that their are NO Israelis with any ancient r Israelite genes unless Arab and the Anti sw3mitic sard is a scam that even brave Rabbis and Israeli knesset MPs have stated ”’ its the smear card used ar anyone who chall;enfe the Zionist Isael and its “familars” they smrar all they cannot own and buy politicians whowsale .. who in eight minds qould have made Blair aTHE Middle le East peace envoy if Israeli interests werent served by it ?
Read the Bslfour declaration and tell me the Israelis honoured it ?
My point is that your comments about Israelite heritage read as racism.
If you are saying it is impossible to be anti-Semitic towards them because nobody in Israel is an actual Semite, then you are playing with language in a silly and dangerous way. Anti-Semitism is now accepted to be a prejudice that is applied to all people who practise Judaism.
Now, I quite agree that there are some in the Israeli administration who happily use claims of anti-Semitism to smear those who challenge that country’s activities.
I can’t comment on the decision to make Tony Blair an envoy to the Middle East as I do not have any background information to hand – and would warn you that you will need to be able to support your claim with factual information if challenged by supporters of the people you are criticising.
I certainly agree with you about the Balfour Declaration.
SPEAKING FACTS IS NOT RACISM …speaking out against Israeli genocide is NOT anti semitic . speaking out about some 2 thousand Strians that have been killed and had organs removed is not anti semitic ,,, a hindu temple gets attacked its a crime , a church burned sown in Israel is an act of GOD ? the most blessed Mosque attacke every week in Israel is ,,,, no big deal as for raxism .. Israel is THE most raxist country on planet ,, go there ,, jewish only roads . walking areas . buss traffic lanes is like US used to be for coloreds ,even South Africa regards Israel as an Apartheid state , as for Blair ,,,realy , war crimial . guilty od causing countless civilan deaths made peace envoy ? Israels first prime minister party to bombing fellow Jews , / no other counret has broken as many international laws .. Zionists do not use facts they insist on their versions being true despite no actual evidence … even today mem,bers of the knesset lie about 6 million being gassed ,, Eisenhower had thousands of autopsies performed on corpses NOT one showed evidence of being gassed ,, the 6 million figure comes from an ancient piece of writeing stating ; their would be 6 million less when they returned to the holy land .. google it see how many times the same figure was used befopre the war ,,,googlle official refdcross figures… Eisenhower had DEATH camps built after the war ..close to 2 million Germans mostly civillians fied of exposure and starvation
Go to Fressden on the aniverery of the fire bombing , see Jews openly celebrating on the street … whisper ,,BOYCOTT west bank foods , youll be arrested if AIPAC has its way …ask about proof of the gaSSINGS AND YOU WILL BE LOCKED UP IN MOST COUNTRIES
Who owns the MSM ? the majority of the worlds politicians ? All but 4 of the worlds centeal banks ? Every runner in the last US election …One was owned by the Koshe brothers reat by a certain family of bankers ..ALL THE ABOVE ARE FACTS
Love your blog but you are wrong not to speak out about $$$$$hhhh>>>you know who
I don’t agree with much of what is said here. Published for the sake of discussion.