Stephen Pollard’s tweet accidentally refers to the anti-Semitic stereotype suggesting an international conspiracy of Jewish bankers. But when he attacks others for making similar references, he always claims they are deliberate. How does he know, when he can’t even stop himself from making the same mistake?
The desperation at the heart of the anti-Semitism accusations against Jeremy Corbyn is getting embarrassing now.
The latest anti-Corbyn campaigner to humiliate himself is Stephen Pollard, editor of the Jewish Chronicle. Mr Pollard, it seems, was infuriated after Labour Party leader (and constant victim of anti-Semitism accusations) Jeremy Corbyn tweeted the following:
In response, Mr Pollard wrote, “Been hesitating to tweet this because I keep thinking it can’t be, surely it can’t be.
“But the more I think about It, the more it seems it really is.
“This is ‘nudge nudge, you know who I’m talking about don’t you?’
“And yes I do. It’s appalling.”
The implication is that Mr Corbyn was referring to that staple of the anti-Semitic stereotypes, the ‘international Jewish banking conspiracy’.
This is made explicit in a follow-up tweet by Mr Pollard, which we’ll consider below.
But let’s start by making one thing plain. As David Rosenberg states: “Stephen Pollard and Jeremy Corbyn. One of them seems to think all bankers are Jews. Clue: it is not Jeremy Corbyn.”
You know the bank that Mr Corbyn mentions specifically in his video message? Morgan Stanley?
That bank is run by one James P Gorman. I don’t have an explicit statement about his religion but, as he appears to have attending a Catholic school in Australia, I think it is safe to conclude that he isn’t Jewish.
So Mr Corbyn could not be making any kind of reference to the ‘international Jewish banking conspiracy’ trope.
Commentators were quick to point this out, and to provide their own explanations for Mr Pollard’s faux pas: Anti-Semitism of his own.
Mick, below, then asked the obvious question: “Why does this not lead to a lawyer’s letter?”
The response he received was, “Because Pollard has carefully worded it in such a way to avoid outright libel. He frames it as a question… Old journalist trick!”
Actually he didn’t. And his follow-up tweet makes the anti-Semitism clear:
It certainly isn’t the most intelligent thing in the world to follow up a tweet that implies an anti-Semitic stereotype with another that makes it overt. But that’s what Mr Pollard did when he tweeted: “I accept all the criticism of this tweet, and that I may be way off beam.
“But this is what happens when antisemitism is allowed to flourish – and when an antisemite leads a party. You start to read his every word through that prism. Even if the words aren’t about Jews.”
He accepts that Mr Corbyn wasn’t referring to Jews and therefore there could be no reference to the ‘international Jewish banking conspiracy’ stereotype.
But he also accepts that he was implying anti-Semitism and, given the context, this can only have been done with reference to that trope.
With Mr Corbyn out of the picture, the only person here who could be suggesting an international banking conspiracy run by Jews is Stephen Pollard.
And that puts him in a highly actionable position.
Not only that, but Mr Pollard has compounded his error by continuing to claim anti-Semitism by Mr Corbyn, even though he has admitted that he has no evidence on which to base the claim.
He was never anything else.
And we can throw his tweets in the pile with all the other false accusations. Here are a couple of recent examples:
I think we can all agree that the speech in the video clip above is a pack of lies from beginning to end, not just the part referencing Mr Corbyn’s comments on “irony”.
How about this, from Canary supremo Kerry-Anne Mendoza?
That’s a classic tactic of the accusers, by the way – claiming one thing is something completely different that happens to be anti-Semitic.
That’s lying – exactly the kind of lying that has created the ‘anti-Semitism’ row that has been festering for more than two years.
How hypocritical of Mr Pollard that he can claim his own anti-Semitism occurred accidentally but then find it (falsely) in the words of others – and demand that it must be intentional.
I seem to recall the Jewish Chronicle making that kind of claim about myself. How did that turn out, again?
I’m heartened by two other tweets that were published in the last couple of days. The first refers to the accusations against Mr Corbyn and the reaction of the general public:
The truth of this is self-evident from the recent Labour NEC elections in which supporters of Mr Corbyn increased their presence on the party’s ruling committee, with the support of the party membership at large.
And then there’s this:
And this too is true. The differences between the Labour Party under Jeremy Corbyn and that part of the Jewish community that has taken issue with it could be mended very easily because they are based on falsehoods.
Discussion of the evidence supporting each side’s arguments – in good faith – could result in an epiphany.
Isn’t it worth a try?
Visit our JustGiving page to help Vox Political’s Mike Sivier fight anti-Semitism libels in court
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