Equality watchdog has shown Starmer its report on Labour anti-Semitism: expect leak soon

The Equalities and Human Rights Commission has finished its report on allegations of anti-Semitism in the Labour Party and sent a copy to Keir Starmer. We can expect it to be leaked soon, then.

That’s only if the report is critical of Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership, of course. If not, we can expect the party’s right-wing factionalists to keep tight-lipped about it.

It will be hard to take the report seriously in any event; the EHRC is the so-called equality organisation that refused to investigate government discrimination against sick and disabled people.

And it declined the opportunity to investigate Conservative Islamophobia because that party was conducting an investigation of its own. What about Labour’s (now-multiple) investigations into anti-Semitism?

There’s a very strong double-standard operating here.

The report won’t be made public until September, we are now told – after Labour as an organisation, rather than just Starmer, has had a chance to comment on it.

In the meantime, let’s take the opportunity to review the standards under which the investigation should have been carried out.

We are fortunate to have Richard Snell’s observations, originally posted on Facebook, to help us in this.

He wrote in a letter to EHRC chair David Isaac:

“I hope that [the EHRC] bases its inquiry on the historical definition of anti-Semitism which is a hatred of all Jews and of the whole of Jewish religion and culture, a definition which does not concern itself with any one state and does not discriminate between the different denominations or branches of the Jewish people?

“I point this out because the allegations of anti-Semitism in the Labour Party are being made by certain of its members who wish to protect Israel from the criticisms which have followed on from its actions in Palestine. These see fit to associate in the public mind the contemporary and specific criticisms of the modern state of Israel with the long tradition of anti-Semitism which I have described above.

“It was to ensure that this equation was regularised that the IHRA definition of anti-Semitism was formulated.

“I feel therefore it is vital that the EHRC ignores the IHRA definition of anti-Semitism in this context as being politically-motivated, permitting the suppression of criticism of Israel and diverting attention away from the genuine problems many Jews face as they have always faced regardless of their allegiance or lack of it to Israel.

“I am myself a Jew, and feel this strongly.

“All this being said, then may I also hope that the EHRC asks the following questions in the course of its investigation, questions inspired by the kinds of actions historically taken against Jews by those who oppose them simply because they are Jews, i.e. by genuine anti-Semites?

“1. Have any Jews been required to identify themselves as Jews in their application to join the Party?

“2. Have any Jews been excluded from the Party on the sole grounds that they are Jewish?

“3. Have any Jews been required by the Party to carry or wear something which specifically identifies them as being Jewish?

“4. Have any Jews been denied access to meetings, committees or conferences on the sole grounds that they are Jews?

“5. Have any Jews been denied the right to stand as officers for, speak at, or in any other way contribute to meetings, committees or conferences, on the sole grounds they are Jews?

“6. Have any Jewish officers been denied promotion within the Labour Party on the sole grounds that they are Jewish?

“7. Have any Jews been denied membership of the NEC on the sole grounds that they are Jewish?

“8. Have any Jews been denied the right to stand as Parliamentary candidates on the sole grounds that they are Jewish?

“9. Have any Jews been denied the right to cabinet status on the sole grounds that they are Jewish?

“10. Have any Jews ever been denied the right to stand for the Party leadership on the sole grounds that they are Jewish?

“11. Is there any part of the Party’s constitution which includes Jews among those social classes of which the Labour Party is critical?

“12. Are there any rules in the Party’s rule-book which are specific to Jews, both regarding how they must or must not behave and what kinds of discriminatory actions should be taken against them?

“13. Have any representatives of the Party been permitted by the Party to speak or write against Jews in any public forum, or in so doing have claimed that they are speaking on the Party’s behalf?”

I agree with Mr Snell that it is by its answers to these questions that we should judge the EHRC’s report. Failure to answer them will raise even more serious questions about the organisation’s role than already exist.

Mr Isaac should be a nervous man. He may have judged the Labour Party, but we will now judge the EHRC.

Source: Labour sees draft conclusions of anti-Semitism report – BBC News

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  1. G Millward July 14, 2020 at 3:00 pm - Reply

    It’s rather interesting that there appears to be a bit of a bunfight between certain right wing charities, a right wing journalist and right wing twitter groups as to which will be responsible for the expected downfall of Jeremy Corbyn…


    • Mike Sivier July 14, 2020 at 3:29 pm - Reply

      Huh. Let them.

      • G Millward July 14, 2020 at 4:24 pm - Reply

        Indeed. I do find it amusing.

  2. Jeffrey Davies July 14, 2020 at 4:21 pm - Reply

    You couldn’t make these stories of Corbyn up but BBC itv media all did shamefully the peasants believed the hype crackers are they yet now we get a clown whose only goal is himself stammer the spammer and bojo the clown

  3. Growing Flame July 14, 2020 at 7:00 pm - Reply

    I am really impressed by Richard Snell’s list of questions re evidence ,or otherwise, of anti-semitism in the Labour Party. I might only add some further questions such as “Has any policy been adopted, or even proposed to be adopted, by the Party which specifically calls for Jews, as Jews, to be discriminated against or otherwise disadvantaged simply because of their Jewish status?”

    I cannot think of any such policy and I cannot imagine it would ever arise. There is a world of difference between a Party of over 550,000 members, which, by definition, is bound to have some anti-semitic members(conscious of their prejudice or not) and a Party which is committed to anti-semitism as one of its core values. I suspect the Labour Party is the former and certainly not the latter.
    If there is to be criticism of the Party it is in seeming to be slow to deal with the few conscious anti-semites in its ranks. And recent revelations of sabotage by Party officials may well explain the slowness.

  4. Grey Swans July 15, 2020 at 1:32 am - Reply

    We know anti-semitism was weaponised to attack the Corbynite part of the Labour party.

    But the real reason that the Labour party should immediately cease, is that the report proved that right wing majority Labour MPs and internal paid admin threw the 2017 and 2019 elections against Labour, working hard for this fatal Tory government to continue.

    This brought parliament into disrepute and showed Labour had no respect for all the sacrifices done by men and women alike, to fight for the working class to have the right to vote.

    It also proved that us taxpayers are being ‘defrauded’ by right wing Labour MPs (and Peers) taking wages and expenses, when they are just an extension of the Tory party. Thus making parliament a one party state, as Labour leads the opposition benches.

    As Starmer and his Labour party ‘script’ said by Labour MPs on television and newspaper interviews, just agrees with the chaotic Tory Covid19 policies, then they are also failing to do their task of opposition in parliament.

    As Starmer’s Labour and all right wing Labour MPs are just clone Tories, then the money saved by not paying them, could better be used for protective clothing for NHS staff and carers in care homes.

    The socialist campaign group of Labour MPs could survive by converting and making Chris Williamson’s socialist movement into a political party, and turning themselves into that party as sitting MPs, in safety as there is no general election til 2024.

    It is up to your knowledge if that new party could be called Williamson’s Labour.

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