Tags

, , , , , , , , , ,

It is being reported – this example was in The Independent – that Labour MPs are to give their leaders an ultimatum at their Monday meeting: Show that they have addressed accusations of anti-Semitism that dogged the party over the last few years.

It is possible that general secretary Jennie Formby could face calls for her resignation amid claims that she had staked her job on being able to resolve the issue by Christmas last year.

Personally, I’m not sure about that. I seem to recall Tom Watson saying that she should be given until Christmas to get to grips with it, which isn’t the same. But then, the “anti-Semitism” debate is riddled with instances in which false accusers have made inaccurate claims about what’s been said in the past.

Public opinion – apart from that of a few witch-hunters – seems firmly on the side of Jeremy Corbyn and Ms Formby. A rumour is already circulating that the ultimatum is being timed to coincide with a planned split from the party by hard right-wingers (don’t call them centrists) who have been threatening to clear off and start their own party for many months.

The aim, it seems, would be to undermine support for Labour in order to attract voters to the new party:

Would it succeed? Meh… History shows that a Labour Party which sticks to its core principles of supporting the poor and vulnerable against exploitation by the rich and powerful will endure against attacks from people of privilege – even if those people are squatting within the party.

More interesting, perhaps, is the question of whether there is any case to answer. “Cremant Communarde”, on Twitter, wrote a thread about this last week, going into the history of claims against Labour – starting before Mr Corbyn became leader, that is worth quoting here:

Now, there‘s a lady who knows a lot about storming out of the Labour Party! She’s done it many times, it seems.

Actually, let’s pause the thread there, because here’s Israeli historian Profession Avi Shlaim, Emeritus Professor of International Relations at the University of Oxford and fellow of the British Academy, to tell us neither Ms Shah nor Mr Livingstone said anything remotely anti-Semitic, despite the furore that surrounded them:

I stood up for Ken Livingstone – and made the point that the image tweeted by Ms Shah was not in itself anti-Semitic – and was accused of anti-Semitism as a result. I proved these accusations false by myself but it’s good to have such learned corroboration.

Back to “Cremant Communarde”:

That’s an awful lot of pre-Corbyn anti-Semitism accusations, reported in the newspapers with Mr Corbyn’s face all over them.

Ever get the feeling you’re being misled?

Anti-Semitism in the Labour Party has fallen since Jeremy Corbyn became leader. Don’t take my word for it – take it from pro-Tory polling organisation YouGov.

Labour has taken firm action in suspending and expelling many members who have been correctly accused of anti-Semitism…

But the party has made mistakes as well. Right-wingers keen on isolating Mr Corbyn (it seems to me) have used the controversy to accuse and expel people who are innocent of any wrong-doing – like myself.

I was accused, and my membership suspended, by the party in May 2017. An investigation followed that failed to follow Labour Party rules, and Labour’s NEC narrowly voted to reinstate me if I underwent some form of retraining by the Jewish Labour Movement – an organisation which had recently framed Jackie Walker as an anti-Semite at a training session. I declined.

Details of the (faked) case against me were then leaked to The Sunday Times, which published a smear piece about me in February last year. Copycat articles appeared in several other papers. I complained to press regulator IPSO about all of them and all have now published corrections. That’s right – I beat all the allegations.

My case came back before the Labour Party – this time the NCC, which handles disciplinary cases – in November last year, and it was a kangaroo court. After I conclusively proved in my evidence that the charges against me were false, the panel found against me because, apparently, the case wasn’t about whether I was an anti-Semite or not; it was about the fact that somebody had complained that I had written something that upset them. Labour has refused to say who this person was. As far as I am concerned, no such person ever existed.

It seems clear, therefore, that malcontents who have embedded themselves in the Labour hierarchy are using the anti-Semitism controversy for their own political ends – removing people they don’t like.

This cannot go on.

It is impossible to appeal against a decision by Labour’s NCC – no matter how corrupt it may be.

But I can take the party to court.

You see, Labour’s case against me – over articles I wrote in 2016 and 2017 – relies on rules that only appeared in the party’s rule book for 2018. Those rules are not retrospective and may not be applied to my case, but the party used them to expel me.

As an unincorporated association that is legally regulated by its rule book, Labour must abide by the rules in that book. This means that it is vulnerable to court action for breach of contract if it breaks those rules – as it has in my case.

I have tried to contact Ms Formby to arrange an amicable resolution of my dispute with the party over its treatment of me. She has not acknowledged my attempts to communicate with her.

So I’ll have to see her – or her represenative – in court.

This week seems an appropriate time to file the papers.


Vox Political needs your help!
If you want to support this site
(
but don’t want to give your money to advertisers)
you can make a one-off donation here:

Donate Button with Credit Cards

Here are four ways to be sure you’re among the first to know what’s going on.

1) Register with us by clicking on ‘Subscribe’ (in the left margin). You can then receive notifications of every new article that is posted here.

2) Follow VP on Twitter @VoxPolitical

3) Like the Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/VoxPolitical/

Join the Vox Political Facebook page.

4) You could even make Vox Political your homepage at http://voxpoliticalonline.com

And do share with your family and friends – so they don’t miss out!

If you have appreciated this article, don’t forget to share it using the buttons at the bottom of this page. Politics is about everybody – so let’s try to get everybody involved!

Buy Vox Political books so we can continue
fighting for the facts.


The Livingstone Presumption is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

Health Warning: Government! is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

The first collection, Strong Words and Hard Times,
is still available in either print or eBook format here:

SWAHTprint SWAHTeBook