Tag Archives: Chief Rabbi

Is the UK’s Chief Rabbi more concerned with supporting Israeli racism than Jewish people?

Ephraim Mirvis: His outburst about Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour Party has been condemned as ‘political’ and ‘ideological’ ‘propaganda’.

What the blazes was UK Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis doing, making a speech to US pro-Israel (by which we mean pro-Israeli-government) lobby group AIPAC?

Critics of the organisation have described it as an agent of the Israeli government with strong links to Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud party and the Republican Party in the US.

By making a speech there, Mr Mirvis was also making a clear declaration of political partisanship – as he was when he attacked Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn during the general election campaign last year.

We can see the bias in the parts of his speech reported by the Jewish Chronicle – which I understand has undergone a certain amount of financial embarrassment due to false allegations of anti-Semitism it has made against innocent people.

“Prime Ministers of Israel and key Jewish leaders have been warmly and graciously welcomed at 10 Downing Street” under a Conservative government, he said, ignoring the fact that they have been welcomed under Labour governments too.

“What would happen if the next incumbent was Jeremy Corbyn? What would the consequences be for Jews and Judaism and the State of Israel?”

In making that comment, he committed a cardinal sin in the fight against anti-Semitism: deliberately presenting Judaism and the State of Israel as the same thing.

They aren’t; many Jews worldwide deplore the political decisions of the Israeli government, particularly in its treatment of Palestine.

Perhaps Mr Mirvis chose to blur the boundaries because he is a dyed-in-the-wool Conservative, a friend of Boris Johnson, and a Zionist who supports hatred against Palestinians (based on his own words in the past)?

But then, what can we expect from someone whose position in this debate is based on a lie? The post of Chief Rabbi is entirely symbolic and Jewish law provides no support for it as all rabbis have equal authority in principle.

The post merely arose because secular authorities have wanted an intermediary with the Jewish community for administrative reasons.

By interfering in secular politics, it could be claimed that Mr Mirvis has betrayed his role; he reports to secular politicians but should not have an influence on them.

And you should note that little is said in the JC report about the huge backlash against Mr Mirvis’s election campaign speech. This response is particularly revealing.

Sadly, it seems some political figures are all-too-ready to buy into the role he has assumed for himself (with no authority to do so).

In the following case, I can only sympathise with the attitude of left-wing Jewish group Jewdas:

Source: Chief Rabbi says he felt ‘weight of historic responsibility’ to speak out against Corbyn – The Jewish Chronicle

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Rachel Riley is STILL fighting Jeremy Corbyn with dodgy sources. Help me stop her

Rachel Riley tells us she can’t sleep.

She’d have us believe it is because she is concerned about the possibility of a Jeremy Corbyn government on December 13 – and this makes sense.

It was her campaigning against Mr Corbyn that triggered the online tussle with a teenage girl that led to the libel case against me.

But Ms Riley chooses some strange allies. Consider:

The exchange that “gives” her “hope” indicates that Ms Riley supports the vague rant by Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis last week, when he claimed – wrongly, as it turned out – that British Jews were afraid of a Corbyn-led Labour government.

No evidence was produced in support of this claim and we later discovered that Mr Mirvis is a staunch Conservative, a friend of Theresa May and Boris Johnson, and also a former resident of Israel who apparently supports the military subjugation of Palestinians – something Mr Corbyn strongly opposes as he advocates a peaceful solution to the conflict between Israel and Palestine.

Mr Corbyn has since received messages of support from other UK-based Jews and Jewish organisations. Those that have come from other rabbis have equal weight to the comments of Mr Mirvis as Jewish law provides no support for the position of a “Chief Rabbi” of higher rank than them; every rabbi has equal authority in principle and the position arises from secular administrative reasons including providing an intermediary between the government and the Jewish community.

I mention all this to demonstrate that Ms Riley relies on sources which, at best, could be described as questionable in her denunciations of Mr Corbyn.

This is exactly the reason a teenage girl suggested to Ms Riley that she should be “ashamed” of herself – that she had been sharing “awful” media.

The exchange that followed led to the girl saying she had received death threats from Ms Riley’s followers.

Now, nearly a year later, we can see Ms Riley will keep acting in this provocative manner – unless, perhaps, she receives a reprimand from the courts.

That is what my case is all about.

She is trying to excuse herself for the abuse received by a teenage girl – with mental health issues – by trying to silence me.

Her method of silencing me isn’t getting a judgement in court – it’s an attempt to make justice too expensive for me, with a long-drawn-out series of court proceedings.

But I am close to winning and she knows it.

All I need is the funding to see it through.

And after more than £40,000 has been donated already, you wouldn’t want me to fail for the lack of a little more, would you?

Here are the fiddly details once again:

Email five of your friends, asking them to pledge to the CrowdJustice site. The address is https://www.crowdjustice.com/case/mike-sivier-libel-fight/

You could also post a link to Facebook, asking your friends to pledge.

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Ms Riley says she is losing sleep because of the election.

Perhaps she would be better-occupied preparing to face me in court.

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Chief Rabbi’s rant condemned as ‘political’ and ‘ideological’ ‘propaganda’

Ephraim Mirvis: His outburst about Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour Party has been condemned as ‘political’ and ‘ideological’ ‘propaganda’.

Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis’s attack on Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has been decisively debunked by the UK Rabbinical Executive of the United European Jews.

This may be unsurprising, as the organisation arises from True Torah Jews, a group that was set up to oppose Zionism – and Mr Mirvis is a Zionist of what we may consider an extreme nature.

United European Jews, as an organisation, is concerned that Zionism endangers Jews across the world.

In a letter to the Labour leader, Rabbi Mayer Weinberger writes as follows:

“I write to you on behalf of the Executive Board of the United European Jews organisation regarding an unusually disturbing declaration that was … reported in the media claiming that the overwhelming majority of British Jews are “gripped by anxiety” at the prospect of a Labour victory in the forthcoming general election.

“Please not that we totally reject and condemn in no uncertain terms these remarks, which [do] not represent the views of the mainstream chareidi Jews that live in the UK.

“We believe that such assertions are due to propaganda with a political and ideological agenda. An agenda which, I might add, is diametrically opposed to fundamental Jewish values as well as the opinions of tens of thousands of Jews in our community.

“At this time, we also relay our gratefulness for your numerous acts of solidarity with the Jewish community over many years and also welcome your assurances that Labour will do everything necessary to defend the Jewish way of life and protect our rights to practise our religion.

“For all this, we take this opportunity to say: Thank you! Mr Corbyn.”

At the very least, this shows that opinion about Mr Corbyn and the Labour Party in the Jewish community as far less conclusive than Mr Mirvis – and the Tory-supporting UK media – would have us believe.

This Site issued a reminder yesterday that Mr Mirvis is a dyed-in-the-wool Conservative, a friend of Boris Johnson, and a Zionist who supports the bombing of Palestinians (based on his own words in the past).

But you can’t expect to hear about this on the UK’s highly-partisan mainstream news media. So please share it yourself.

You can see a copy of the letter on Sue Jones’s excellent Politics and Insights site here: Rabbinical Executive of United European Jews write to Jeremy Corbyn dismissing UK media commentary as ‘propaganda’ 

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Unafraid: Jews respond to Chief Rabbi’s (and other) claims that they fear a Corbyn Labour government

Ephraim Mirvis: On the eve of the Labour Party’s “race and faith” manifesto launch, he made a fact-free rant claiming that the party has not done enough about anti-Semitism. It is nonsense.

British people don’t like being told what to think, it seems – especially British Jews.

The day after the Chief Rabbi tried to tell them to vote “with your conscience” for Boris Johnson and against Jeremy Corbyn, telling them they were afraid of a Labour government, they were already telling him where to stick his vote.

Within hours, I saw this letter from a British Jew circulated on the social media. It states:

“Dear Chief Rabbi, you have shamed your office today and rendered the Jewish people even more vulnerable to real antisemitism by reinforcing the fake, media-induced antisemitism that you recklessly impute to Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour Party.

“To interfere politically at this point in an election in a way that could affect the only party that could bring hope and social justice to this country is beyond contempt and renders you unfit for office.

“As a Jew and a Labour Party supporter, I am proud to be part of a venture that I see as a continuity of so many of my Jewish forbears who have fought for social justice here and in Europe.

“You talk about ‘the soul of the nation being at stake’ yet have you not noticed what has happened to that soul over the last nine years where: 1. The poor have been vilified 2. The ill have been attacked 3. The mentally ill have suffered 4. Inequality has soared. 5. Greed and financial rapaciousness has flourished 6. Austerity has been unnecessarily applied after a financial crisis brought about by an out of control finance sector that has benefited the wealthiest.

“Where was your voice about the nation’s soul then?

“Yet you inveigh against a decent and honest man who, even now, maintains integrity in the face of manifest manipulation, deceit and digital sleight of hand from the Tories.

“You have shamed your office, the justice-loving tradition of the Jewish people and laid the grounds for future tensions in the most irresponsible way. You seem to lack the acuity of intellect to even spot the most obvious use of this bogus antisemitism as a political weapon.

“Justin Schlossberg of the Media Reform Coalition called the antisemitism saga ‘a disinformation paradigm’ and made a detailed study of the issue. The great scholar, Norman Finkelstein, likewise, sees this a purely politically motivated attack.

“How dare you, amateurishly intervene in this, betraying the great Jewish scholarly tradition of intellectual and analytical acumen embodied in the Talmud and the exegetics of the Chumash.”

The letter is signed, “With profound sadness and considerable disgust.”

While Andrew Neil on BBC1 was enjoying the sound of his own voice a little too much as he tried to gaslight Jeremy Corbyn himself into an apology he had neither any need nor intention of offering, Miriam Margolyes was defending him on Channel 4 (from the anti-Semitism accusation, at least):

The wonderful Ms Margolyes is also among the 10 Jewish voices discussing Mr Corbyn in this video clip:

The Chief Rabbi’s comments have also come under closer scrutiny after evidence was revealed that he is a Conservative and a friend of Tory leader Boris Johnson. Further revelations were to follow.

Indeed. And why did he have nothing to say about two Conservative candidates who recently faced charges of anti-Semitism?

Saddest to note has been the effect on ordinary British Jews, who feel that – well, don’t take my word for it. See for yourself:

The good news is that, as I mentioned at the top of this article, British people don’t like being told what to think: Labour has enjoyed an upward leap in the opinion polls.

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Here’s the real reason Chief Rabbi Mirvis attacked Jeremy Corbyn and Labour: he’s a TORY (and a racist, it seems)

Considering the furore over Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis’s attack on Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour Party, one would think that this was an open-and-shut case, and that all the evidence shows an honest and decent man, concerned about the safety of his people. Right?

WRONG!

Here’s the reason: Ephraim Mirvis is a dyed-in-the-wool Tory.

The text reads: “I am delighted to congratulate Boris Johnson, a longstanding friend and champion of the Jewish community, on becoming the next leader of the Conservative Party and our next Prime Minister. As he accepts upon himself the mantle of responsibility to lead our nation, may he be blessed with the wisdom to successfully navigate the political uncertainties we face and bring healing and prosperity to our great country.”

Considering the history of racism, sexism, Islamophobia and – yes – anti-Semitism that Mr Johnson and the Conservative Party trail behind them like a shroud, that is in the worst possible taste.

Not only that – he’s a firm supporter of Benjamin Netanyahu’s Israel, an apartheid state where Palestinians are persecuted:

For those who have trouble reading the text, it states: “The Rabbi, who used to live in Israel and is personal friend of both Boris Johnson as well as Netanyahu, has frequently defended Israel’s right to bomb Palestinians.” It is followed by a series of weblinks in support of the statement.

So it seems Mr Mirvis, happy to tar Labour with the anti-Semitism brush, is a racist himself.

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Anti-Labour Jewish groups launch fact-free attack on Jeremy Corbyn

Ephraim Mirvis: On the eve of the Labour Party’s “race and faith” manifesto launch, he made a fact-free rant claiming that the party has not done enough about anti-Semitism. It is nonsense.

How mendacious of Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis to attack the handling of anti-Semitism in the Labour Party, just before Jeremy Corbyn launches a new “race and faith” manifesto!

Isn’t it telling that the attack is heavy on emotion but contains no factual evidence?

And doesn’t the contribution of the usual suspects, leaping on the bandwagon, prove that this is a tissue of lies and nonsense, intended to whip up fear among the Jewish community and distrust in the wider electorate?

Mr Mirvis wrote his comments in The Times – a publication This Writer won’t support in any way after its Sunday edition libelled me as a Holocaust denier in 2018. It took me nearly a year to secure a very full apology with the help of newspaper regulator IPSO.

The BBC’s report of his words suggests that they contain absolutely no factual evidence against Mr Corbyn – just a lot of emotive verbiage.

He said anti-Semitism was “a new poison – sanctioned from the very top” of the Labour Party.

Jeremy Corbyn is the man at the very top of the Labour Party, and his record of support for Jewish people is outstanding. Read it for yourself:

https://twitter.com/ToryFibs/status/1199084351771811841

Mr Mirvis said Labour’s response to anti-Semitism accusations had been “utterly inadequate” and said it “can no longer claim to be the party of equality and anti-racism”.

He wrote: “The way in which the leadership of the Labour Party has dealt with anti-Jewish racism is incompatible with the British values of which we are so proud – of dignity and respect for all people.

“It has left many decent Labour members and parliamentarians, both Jewish and non-Jewish, ashamed of what has transpired.”

This Writer is here to tell you that those people should be ashamed – of the way innocent Labour members were persecuted by the party’s so-called ‘disputes’ team, simply for supporting Mr Corbyn.

When that organisation hounded me out of the party, it seemed clear that guilt was assumed from the moment of accusation – no evidence was needed.

That’s why, when my case came before Labour’s quasi-judicial NCC, it had to rely on charges that took my words out-of-context, and in some cases out-of-sequence, in order to present a false impression of guilt.

That is the fact of the Labour anti-Semitism witch-hunt – all, in my opinion, carried out to appease people who won’t be satisfied until Mr Corbyn himself is removed from the party leadership.

Many of them support the Conservative Party, it seems. They fear a Labour government.

The mainstream media is having a huge amount of fun recycling all the lies about Labour anti-Semitism that have been voiced since Mr Corbyn became Labour leader in 2015.

The social media have responded with factual information – but, do you know what? It seems that material isn’t getting through to the TV, radio and print news sources!

And in a time of supposed legally-imposed impartiality, too. Shocking.

Let’s redress the balance with some facts:

Tweets 24 to 42 of Red Robin’s thread, below, detail actions taken by Labour to handle accusations of anti-Semitism. While I don’t agree that the actions taken by individuals in the party as part of this were fair – innocent people have been expelled from the party – can anyone say that the party hasn’t done enough, and expect to be believed?

Yes, vote with your conscience.

But first make sure your conscience isn’t being manipulated by liars.

Source: General election 2019: Chief rabbi attacks Labour anti-Semitism record – BBC News

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So-called anti-Semitism campaigners publish childish and reluctant pseudo-apology for Corbyn lie

The Campaign Against Antisemitism has been pilloried for its unreasonable attack on Jeremy Corbyn.

Long-term readers of This Site will, I hope, understand and forgive me if my enjoyment of the Campaign Against Antisemitism’s discomfiture seems more than fulsome.

The organisation, which seems to have been founded as an offshoot of the Israel Advocacy Movement, and appears dedicated to countering criticism of the government of Israel by accusing the critics of anti-Semitism, put Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn in its sights last week.

The claim was that Mr Corbyn had failed to mention Jews in his Holocaust Memorial Day statement. This was untrue. It was later found to be true that Theresa May, the Prime Minister, was in fact guilty of this omission (if any guilt need be applied – HMD commemorates all victims of the Nazi Holocaust, and victims of several other genocides as well), along with Vince Cable and the Chief Rabbi, as I understand it.

Today, the CAA published a grudging apology for jumping the gun. But the organisation refused to lay any guilt on Mrs May, Mr Cable or the Chief Rabbi – despite the fact that they had definitely done exactly what Mr Corbyn had only been accused of doing.

Here‘s what the CAA had to say. The apology – if you can call it that – is at the very end:

Objectively, it is clear that the collective reaction of Jewish organisations to Mr Corbyn’s failure to mention Jews in his message in the memorial book was different to the Chief Rabbi’s or the Prime Minister’s. Diagnosing the reason for that difference is important.

Mr Corbyn has presided over an unprecedented tolerance by a modern British political party for anti-Jewish racism. After action was not taken against numerous antisemites in the Labour Party, he commissioned the Chakrabarti report. The report was a whitewash and its author was reportedly told in advance that she would earn a peerage from it. Now, under conditions of secrecy recommended by the report, we do not know what is being done about the many cases of antisemitism waiting to be heard. However, we do know that Ken Livingstone, who claimed that Hitler “was supporting Zionism”, was not expelled from the Party despite the objections of 107 Labour MPs who said “we will not allow it to go unchecked” before mostly falling silent. Nor has the Party yet dealt with figures such as Jackie Walker. We also know that Mr Corbyn and his allies have been dismissive of allegations of antisemitism for a long time, and have had trouble speaking about the Party’s antisemitism problem without alluding to far less evident issues with Islamophobia and “racism in all its forms”. This is compounded by the fact that Mr Corbyn already sought out and defended antisemites from Raed Salah to Reverend Stephen Sizer, long before he was in the political spotlight.

For these reasons, Campaign Against Antisemitism and other Jewish organisations around the world are particularly concerned about Mr Corbyn. In this instance, Mr Corbyn has a defence that he did just the same thing as others whom we have not criticised, but context is everything and the heightened concern of Jewish organisations worldwide has not sprung from nowhere. However, upon reflection, on this occasion we expressed our concerns in a manner that was open to allegations of double standards, and that was a mistake.

Much of the above is disinformation – hogwash of the foulest kind. The Chakrabarti report was not a whitewash; it was an honest attempt to address an issue that many still believe to have been blown out of proportion by organisations like the CAA, for political purposes, rather than their stated intentions.

The claim that Ken Livingstone said Hitler “was supporting Zionism” makes it seem that he was suggesting the Nazi dictator was in full agreement with all the aims of German Zionists at the time. He wasn’t; he never said that. Mr Livingstone’s comments referred to a very specific instance in which his aims and those of the German Federation of Zionists coincided. The CAA’s claim here is therefore such a strong exaggeration that it may as well be considered a lie.

It is just as well that the CAA does not describe its complaint with Jackie Walker. Allegations about her stem from her attendance at a closed-door, “safe space”, “training” session run by the Jewish Labour Movement, from which none of her words should have been recorded, let alone quoted to the press and used against her. She had taken issue with the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance definition of anti-Semitism which had been adopted by the Labour Party – on very solid grounds, as it happens, and as this dissection of the document by a leading lawyer shows in graphic detail. In fact, the only part of the definition put forward by the JLM that the IHRA has actually adopted is the first two sentences. The text that follows – 11 examples – includes seven that refer to the state of Israel rather than Jews, as this work by Jewish Voices for Labour explains.

Ms Walker was also attacked for suggesting that Holocaust Memorial Day should commemorate other holocausts than that which was perpetrated by the Nazis. The claim against her was that HMD does commemorate other atrocities, which is true. But it doesn’t commemorate all of them, including – for example – the genocide of indigenous American peoples over 500 years that claimed 100 million lives. And of course the protestations of certain people, including the CAA, when certain other people didn’t mention Jews in relation to HMD – the manner of their complaint – made it clear that they consider it to be a day to commemorate what happened to Jewish people, rather than the others. It is an attitude that has caused a certain amount of friction, as revealed by reactions to previous articles on This Site.

The claim that Mr Corbyn and Labour have been “dismissive” of allegations of anti-Semitism might possibly be explained with a counter-claim that some of those allegations are vexatious – especially those put forward by organisations like the CAA against Mr Livingstone, Ms Walker and, for that matter, myself.

As for the allegations of links between Mr Corbyn and anti-Semites, a group of British Jews wrote to the Jewish Chronicle to berate it for making the same claims during his initial campaign to become Labour Party leader, in 2015. Their letter stated:

Your assertion that your attack on Jeremy Corbyn is supported by ‘the vast majority of British Jews’ is without foundation. We do not accept that you speak on behalf of progressive Jews in this country. You speak only for Jews who support Israel, right or wrong.

“There is something deeply unpleasant and dishonest about your McCarthyite guilt by association technique.

But that is exactly the “deeply unpleasant and dishonest” technique being used by the Campaign Against Antisemitism again, in the article published yesterday (January 28).

Notice that the CAA article goes on to say Mr Corbyn “has a defence that he did just the same thing as others whom we have not criticised”, but this is a lie. Mr Corbyn did mention Jews in his words; the others did not.

Particularly pertinent to This Writer is the comment that “context is everything”. Yes it is – and that is the reason I remain disappointed that the Campaign Against Antisemitism took so many words from my articles and presented them, out of context, in an attempt to make me appear to be an anti-Semite.

In the light of yesterday’s words, perhaps it is time the organisation took down its lying article and published a full, frank and grovelling apology for its hate-filled attack on an entirely innocent man.

Finally, note that the apology at the end really isn’t one. All the author of the article can manage is an admission that the attack on Mr Corbyn was a “mistake”.

What kind of mistake?

The tone of the article suggests its author is sorry the CAA was found out, not sorry that it attacked an innocent man irresponsibly. That would certainly correspond with my own experience of its behaviour.

But it seems time is running out for the CAA and its fabrications. The attack on Mr Corbyn spawned a huge backlash. Here are some of the responses to its inflammatory article, which it tweeted out to the world in the form directly below:

https://twitter.com/arryTuttle/status/956892140885471232

https://twitter.com/OneTongueJohnny/status/956812585738948608

https://twitter.com/OneTongueJohnny/status/956996789428785153

That’s the problem with campaigns that are motivated by hatred rather than justice: They are always exposed in the end.


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