Tag Archives: John Mann

Tories and ‘centrist’ hypocrites call for closure of fund to help Jeremy Corbyn fight legal battle

‘New’ Labour and old news: Ian Austin and John Mann

Fantasists who have spent years pretending Jeremy Corbyn was an anti-Semite are wailing in protest after a fund was set up to help him fight a legal battle.

The broadcaster John Ware, who was responsible for last year’s risible Panorama ‘documentary’, Is Labour Antisemitic, is suing Corbyn over comments made by the former Labour leader and the official party line on the film at the time.

In response – and after current Labour leader Keir Starmer went against legal advice provided to the party in order to reward former Labour apparatchiks who appeared in the film, Corbyn supporter Carole Morgan has set up a GoFundMe crowdfunding web page that has raised around a quarter of a million pounds at the time of writing.

Starmer has spent around £600,000 of Labour members’ subscription money on court costs and the payout to a group of so-called “whistleblowers” who said they were libelled by the party over their part in the Panorama show. We are told legal advice to the party was that their case would not stand up in court.

Ms Morgan’s hugely-popular crowdfunder has attracted attacks from the usual suspects.

Former Labour Party cuckoo Ian Austin has attacked the initiative, saying that Corbyn should give some of the money back because some of the contributors left anti-Semitic comments.

But this is childish nonsense; it would be poetic justice to use an anti-Semite’s money to protect an anti-racist.

And did Austin complain when £250,000 was raised to help right-wing Labour MPs (as he was at the time) to remove Corbyn from his position as Labour leader?

No he did not.

The hypocrisy is strong in this one…

… as it is in the “news” paper that ran the story:

In a related event, Lord John Mann – who used to be a Labour MP but joined the Tories in exchange for a peerage and unlimited opportunities to have a pop at Corbyn – has been attacking the former Labour leader over anti-Semitic tweets by a ‘grime’ performer called Wiley:

Anti-Corbyn camp followers took up the cry, attacking Corbyn’s supporters for being silent about it. Most of us had never heard of the person in question:

I tweeted about this myself:

It seems I sparked a round of agreement, as others chimed in to admit that they hadn’t heard of this Wiley fellow either:

And here’s the icing on the cake:

So it seems even Corbyn’s reply wasn’t real and Mann was getting het up over nothing.

Will he apologise?

Source: Jeremy Corbyn is under pressure to return £210,000 Go Fund Me cash to help him fight legal battle | Daily Mail Online

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Government advisor on anti-Semitism won’t listen to Jews

Not inspiring confidence: John Mann.

Former Labour MP John Mann seems to have got the hang of working for the Tories very quickly: like them, he has adopted a strategy of talking at us, but refusing to listen to what we have to say.

In other words, as the government’s advisor on anti-Semitism, he’s no damn good at all.

Michael Rosen – who, let’s be honest, has had a lot to say about anti-Semitism and the way accusations of the same have been weaponised as a political tool by Conservatives – tried to contact Lord Mann about anti-Semitism in the Conservative Party (remember the Tories ennobled him as part of the deal to get him working for them. Some people sell out more easily than others, it seems).

Here, he tells us of the response he received:

Nice.

So it seems the anti-Semitism “Czar” either doesn’t understand his job description or lies about it, and is so uninterested in doing his job that he brands others with insulting labels.

Isn’t that exactly the kind of behaviour that he’s supposed to be fighting?

It is also symptomatic of the kind of government we can expect from Conservatives: the kind that wants to make us listen when it makes pronouncements about fictional scourges but is utterly uninterested in real problems.

Mr Rosen continues:

Fat lot of good that would do! And that, of course, is precisely the point.

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Was John Mann a ‘fifth-columnist’ for the Conservatives all along?

John Mann.

My first reaction to the defection of John Mann to the Tory government, where he intends to be their ‘anti-Semitism tsar’, was: “Good riddance!”

He has been an irritant in the Labour Party ever since Jeremy Corbyn became leader.

And his decision to join the government raises serious questions about this behaviour.

Remember this, back in 2016?

Mr Mann was lying – or at least, inaccurate – in his claim that Mr Livingstone had said “Hitler was a Zionist.” He had said no such thing but the accusation stuck, due to the support of others who may have had a political axe to grind.

Eventually Mr Livingstone was forced to quit the Labour Party, because of a trumped-up, meaningless accusation. As he was a supporter of Jeremy Corbyn, the short-term effect was to weaken the Labour leader’s position.

Fortunately, support from the party’s grassroots membership means Mr Corbyn’s opponents have not been able to capitalise on that.

And now Mr Mann has jumped ship, joining the Conservative government.

He has announced that he will retire as Labour MP for Bassetlaw at the next general election (which we all expect will take place before the end of 2019). He has been appointed as a Crossbench peer in Theresa May’s Resignation Honours list – and this has raised suspicion.

The independent watchdog on Lords appointments warned that it would set a dangerous precedent and could be seen as a bribe – or perhaps as a reward for services rendered?

Whatever the fact of the matter, the decision to join the Tories casts doubt on all Mr Mann’s activities in accusing fellow Labour members of anti-Semitism.

Was there a political motive to his claims?

It seems clear that any cases brought against members on his word should be re-opened and the evidence re-examined – at the very least.

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Celebrations in Labour as Mann quits to become Tory anti-Semitism ‘tsar’

John Mann.

John Mann, the MP who falsely accused Ken Livingstone of saying Hitler was a Zionist (he didn’t) and who discriminated against gypsy travellers in an election leaflet, has quit the Labour Party to become the Conservative government’s “anti-Semitism” tsar.

The language is ambiguous here; under the tsars, Russian Jews suffered a huge amount of persecution.

Mr Mann won the enmity of right-thinking people across the UK after he falsely accused Ken Livingstone of saying “Hitler was a Zionist” in an infamous confrontation in a stairwell, where he had somehow managed to rustle up a camera crew out of nowhere to film the moment. This move to the Conservatives casts into doubt the sincerity of everything he said and did in relation to this matter.

But his own credentials in fighting racism are not spotless; a gypsy traveller named Ben Bennett complained to Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn about a leaflet Mr Mann issued in 2016, highlighting a section on “Travellers” and a passage which stated: “The police have powers to remove any Gypsies or Travellers and have powers to direct people to leave the land and remove any vehicles or property they have with them, if they believe, Trespass is occurring.”

The matter was referred to the police, who interviewed Mr Mann before sending a letter to the Bennett family, saying they had offered “advice to Mr Mann concerning the section entitled ‘Travellers’, including any further publication of the booklet, on the basis that it should identify the problem… and not single out a group of people as responsible for the problem… We also advised that any further publication of the booklet would require that the advice it contains would need to be updated.”

The letter also described Mr Mann’s behaviour as “this hate incident”.

https://twitter.com/toughermintrude/status/1170487248187482118

He’s a shady character and the Labour Party is better off without him.

So when The Sunday Times tried to describe the defection as follows…

… it sparked a tidal wave of derision:

“Are you kidding? We’re all f**king delirious! It’s like an early Christmas present!” tweeted Richard Oneill.

And there were many more comments on the same lines.

The Prole Star: “Mann gets out ahead of the trigger ballot that would have deselected him – and good riddance at long last!”

Buddy Hell: “Aren’t you overlooking the obvious? He isn’t Jewish. It’s like appointing Toby Young to the role of Women’s ‘tsar’. He’s also an anti-Gypsy racist. I guess you’re okay with anti-Gypsy racism, no?”

Kathryn Houghton: “Correction: The Labour Party is celebrating after the slithering snake @JohnMannMP FINALLY left the Labour Party to take up his rightful place working officially for his beloved Tory party.”

Rabble Cat: “If Mann jumping ship before he loses his seat in an election is Labour civil war, what would you call the mass exodus from the Tory party? Nuclear war!”

Audrey: “Oh @JohnMannMP I’m so sorry to hear this. ..you were such a great MP. Always fighting for Labour and your consti.. Just kidding.. Not a min too soon. Don’t let the door hit you on your way out. While you’re at it, can you take Watson with you? Cheers.”

Oh, and he couldn’t even get the timing of his announcement right. Hoping to get the lead on the 10 o’clock TV news bulletins, to turn the focus on allegations of Labour anti-Semitism again, he was overshadowed by the resignation from the government of Amber Rudd. Note also the comment by Suzy S:

Fellow Labour MP Wes Streeting, who has also fallen foul of This Site and many right-thinking people in the recent past, praised Mr Mann for his move – and got the response he deserved:

And one last pertinent point from Matt Thomas:

Fair comment?

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John Mann may go against his party in a ‘no confidence’ vote. Bassetlaw Labour: DESELECT

John Mann.

John Mann, Labour MP for Bassetlaw, is the liar who accused Ken Livingstone of saying “Hitler was a Zionist” when he had said no such thing. It practically kicked off the so-called “Labour anti-Semitism crisis” that he and others have been stoking ever since.

Now it seems he would rather support Boris Johnson’s government than see his own party arrange a practical solution to another crisis – Brexit.

This man is no representative of the Labour Party and while Bassetlaw party members may think he is a good constituency MP (I don’t know; they may not) I’m sure plenty of other party members may manage the same while being excellent party representatives as well.

Here he is disgracing himself on LBC:

The process by which MPs may be deselected by their constituency parties has been simplified and I would certainly encourage party members in Bassetlaw to start it now.

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Theresa May’s Brexit is collapsing around her – but she may have one small hope

Theresa May: Will Brexit bring her down?

Theresa May is in serious trouble over her plan for Brexit. In fact, there may be only one chance for her to put her plan into operation – but if she takes it, her humiliation will be complete.

Allow me to explain:

Tory Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab spent October 14 in talks with Michel Barnier, in a bid to resolve the “big issues” preventing agreement between the UK and EU27 on the terms of our separation at the end of March next year:

It did not go well:

Here‘s how The Independent covered the situation:

“A Brexit deal has not been struck despite “intense efforts” in Brussels on Sunday, Michel Barnier has said.

“Mr Barnier’s announcement immediately deflated speculation of a breakthrough in the difficult negotiations, following Mr Raab’s surprise trip to Brussels and the summoning of ambassadors to a meeting at EU headquarters.

“One of the most pressing issues is the Northern Irish backstop, a mechanism to avoid a hard border.

“The EU’s version of the backstop, which would see just Northern Ireland remain aligned with Brussels’ rules, has been called unacceptable by Ms May and is loathed by her DUP allies.

“Ms May’s counter-proposal is for a “temporary customs arrangement” for the whole of the UK, but Tory Brexiteers fear this could become an open-ended position which would prevent free trade deals with countries around the world.

“No further negotiations are planned before European leaders including Theresa May meet for a further summit in Brussels on Wednesday, according to a senior EU diplomat.”

Journalist and commentator Paul Mason paints an accurate word-picture of the situation, I think:

As the reports indicated, Mr Raab’s – and Theresa May’s – problems are not limited to disagreement with the Eurocrats:

The article refers to Mr Johnson’s latest column in the Daily Telegraph, in which he urged Mrs May to “stand up” to “bullies” in the EU. It also points out that Mr Johnson is the most likely to benefit from Mrs May’s humiliation, as he is considered the most likely to replace her as Tory leader (what a horrible thought).

On the other side…

This article refers to a tweet by Anna Soubry, who is currently an outspoken Conservative backbencher. She states:

This is – of course – a view that is diametrically opposed to that of Mr Johnson.

So we can see that the Tories are as bitterly-divided over the EU as they ever were, even though the referendum of 2016 was intended to end this conflict.

Clare Hepworth is right, but I would go further. She will never be able to reconcile the differing point of view.

So what’s her “one small hope”, that I mentioned in the headline?

Simple:

Named in the article are Gareth Snell, Ruth Smeeth, and Caroline Flint – to whom we may reasonably expect to add Kate Hoey, John Mann, Graham Stringer, and Frank Field – who resigned the Labour whip after a vote of ‘no confidence’ in him by constituency party members, prompted by this very issue.

But Aaron Bastani is correct – nobody who is serious about Labour regaining office can countenance this.

Labour’s pro-Brexit rebels (who also appear to be very much anti-Jeremy Corbyn) know that party members are keen to end the Parliamentary careers of MPs who do not support current policies, and may use the selection process in the run-up to a general election to choose new candidates.

Supporting Mrs May might seem a wise tactic – but another general election must take place sooner or later, and party members will not forgive what they will see as treachery.

Remember: The NHS is being sold off piecemeal, its patients’ health treated as commodities to be bought and sold; Universal Credit and the sickness and disability benefit system are leading to the deaths of many thousands of people; privatised utility companies are failing to deliver the services required at a reasonable price… The list of infamy goes on and on.

We need a change of government as soon as possible. Anybody in the Labour Party who helps prevent that will be signing a death warrant for their political career.

As for Mrs May – she’ll take all the help she can get, but the fact that she might have to get it from Labour rebels will be humiliating for her. Mortifying.

But she’s a Tory. She’ll accept any embarrassment if it keeps her in a position to inflict harm on you.

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Brexit rebels should go if their local Labour members say so, says Owen Jones

Kate Hoey: For the heave-ho.

Owen Jones is rightly under fire over his his knee-jerk demand for Pete Willsman to quit Labour’s NEC despite not having done anything wrong.

But he’s right about this.

Kate Hoey, Frank Field, Graham Stringer and John Mann defied the Labour whip to vote in support of a Tory government motion – saving the Tories from defeat in doing so.

If members of their constituency Labour Parties say that this defies the values that bind the organisation together, then they are within their rights to vote the Brexit rebels out of any future party candidacy.

So, according to Mr Jones, Hoey must go. The only thing keeping Field, Stringer and Mann around is the fact that their CLPs haven’t voted for their deselection…

Yet.

The objection should not be whether Labour MPs defy the whip – each should have the right to act according to their conscience. But Labour members should surely have greater power to decide whether those actions defy the values that bind the party.

Labour members should have the power to adjudicate on MPs’ voting records, and “not propping up a catastrophic Tory government” should be regarded as a bare minimum.

Source: Deselection has its place in our democracy. Kate Hoey must go | Owen Jones | Opinion | The Guardian

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John Mann’s ‘dead bird’ rant has harmed his battle against anti-Semitism

 

John Mann.

What a nasty (John) Mann!

Not only has he apparently lied in Parliament (it used to be a gross offence for an MP but, since the Tories took office in 2010, anybody can do it with impunity) but he has threatened libel action against anybody pointing it out.

The controversy arose from a comment during his speech in the Commons debate on anti-Semitism, on April 17.

As part of his contribution, Mr Mann said, referring to his role as Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on antisemitism: “That is what is going on at the moment… I did not expect my wife to be sent, by a Labour Marxist anti-Semite, a dead bird through the post.”

Many have taken this to be a reference to pro-Jeremy Corbyn campaigning group Momentum, but there are several problems with this:

  • The incident happened in 2012, three years before Momentum was formed.
  • The culprit, Roger Dyas-Elliott, is understood not to be a Marxist of any kind – he is said to be “a slightly eccentric man who has a lot of books and is a big fan of Barbara Cartland”.
  • Mr Dyas-Elliott said he said the bird to Mr Mann’s wife, a councillor for Worksop East, because he was ‘bitter’ for being refused the chance to stand as a Labour councillor by Bassetlaw District Applications Panel.
  • He was given a restraining order by magistrates in Worksop. There was no mention of anti-Semitism at the hearing.

So – the culprit was not a Marxist, not a member of Momentum, and not an anti-Semite, and this was something that happened six years ago, not “at the moment”.

If that is the factual content of just one line of Mr Mann’s speech, it does not bode well for the rest.

Perhaps that is the reason Mr Mann has attacked those who questioned his accuracy so bitterly on Twitter, threatening them with court action for libel – and (inadvertently?) laying himself open to potential libel cases in the process:

What “anti semites from Momentum”? Where’s the evidence? The tweets from those who took issue with Mr Mann were, as far as This Writer can tell, mostly accurate and to-the-point. I haven’t seen one containing any anti-Semitic sentiment.

I am left with just one thing to say about Mr Mann’s bizarre “dead bird” claim:

It has passed on. It is no more. It has ceased to be. It has expired and gone to meet its maker. It is late. It is a stiff. Bereft of life. It rests in peace. It is pushing up the daisies. It has rung down the curtain and joined the choir invisible. This is an ex-claim!

And John Mann likes to exclaim about so many things.


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Double-standards? MP who speaks out against ‘anti-Semitism’ accused of ‘hate crime’ against travellers

John Mann.

This was kept very quiet when it happened late last year.

John Mann, the right-wing Labour MP for Bassetlaw, whose contribution to UK public life in 2016 amounted to a false accusation of anti-Semitism against Ken Livingstone* was investigated for a historical hate crime against travellers later that year.

The Skwawkbox tells us (and will no doubt be accused of fake news for it):

Mann’s pugnacious nature led him into a race-related controversy that culminated in an interview with Nottinghamshire police after complaints about a brochure he issued on anti-social behaviour [The Bassetlaw anti-social behaviour handbook] singled out one ethnic community.

Amid a series of chapters on issues that are intrinsically anti-social, Mann included an entire ethnic group: ‘Travellers’.

The article goes on to quote Ben Bennett, a 13-year-old Gypsy Traveller who wrote about the pamphlet to Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, in 2016, as follows [bolding mine]:

“I can’t understand why John Mann MP would choose to talk solely about my community in such a derogatory manner, with statements such as, ‘The police have powers to remove any Gypsies or Travellers and have powers to direct people to leave the land and remove any vehicles or property they have with them, if they believe, Trespass is occurring.’

“This makes me feel like my community are being blamed for all acts of trespass and it is also giving the wider settled community the impression that Gypsies and Travellers are the only people that commit trespass. John Mann MP’s booklet does not talk about any other ethnic minority or any group of people. By singling out Gypsies and Travellers, I feel that it takes away my dignity and that my community are being labelled as law breakers and criminals. This booklet makes me feel hurt and discriminated against.

He continued:

“If the same statement was made using the headline Jews then I know that many authority figures would say that it was anti-Semitic and they would be right, but somehow the headline saying Travellers is seen as acceptable. This is anti-Gypsyism, and my community feel that racism towards Gypsies and Travellers is seen as the last acceptable form of racism.

“John Mann MP said in May… “if Labour cannot combat racism, we are nothing.” I don’t understand why John Mann MP would talk publicly about how he wants to combat racism and yet write such racist comments in his booklet to single out my community.

So, is John Mann, who campaigned vocally against what he saw as anti-Semitism last year, a racist?

The matter was referred to the police who – we are told – interviewed Mr Mann before sending this letter to the Bennett family:

Hate Crime Manager David Alton wrote that he and Inspector Neil Bellamy “did offer advice to Mr mann concerning the section entitled “Travellers”, including any further publication of the booklet, on the basis that it should identify the problem… and not single out a group of people as responsible for the problem… which is in keeping with the rest of the booklet.”

He continued: “From my perspective this concludes my investigation into this hate incident,” indicating that he considered Mr Mann’s booklet to have constituted hate literature in this respect.

Mr Mann appears to have denied that the police interview took place, and to have claimed that Master Bennett’s comments about him were defamatory.

For the latter claim to be true, the comments would need to lower Mr Mann in the estimation of right-thinking members of society, and they would have to be false.

Were they?

This is a serious matter as Mr Mann’s conduct in this matter would affect the way his conduct towards Ken Livingstone – and in relation to anti-Semitism allegations in general – is regarded.

*That’s why ‘anti-Semitism’ is in quotation marks in the headline.


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Accusation games: It’s all falling apart for the knee-jerk “anti-Semitism” accusers

Momentum’s former vice-chair, Jackie Walker: Does she look like an anti-Semite now? [Image: Andy Hall for the Observer].

Isn’t it funny how these people are starting to be pulled into the light, when they thought they could play their dirty little accusation games from the shadows.

It’s like a game of aggressive-Zionist join-the-dots now; Shai Masot leads to Labour Friends of Israel, and from there on to the Jewish Labour Movement and who knows where.

This Writer has to wonder whether this conspiracy – and it is a conspiracy, have no doubt about that – would have been rumbled if, for example, people like myself hadn’t objected to the claims of anti-Semitism when they were levelled at Naz Shah, Ken Livingstone and Jeremy Corbyn last summer.

I was warned off, you know. Good friends told me to be very careful of what I was saying, because the people I was accusing are “very dangerous indeed”.

Maybe they are, but facts have a habit of getting out. And while my articles back then produced a strong opposing – verbal – reaction from certain of our favourite figures and organisations (including a few of the kind of ad hominem claims mentioned below) there have been no bullets or bombs (yet).

They also seem to have got people thinking.

When Jackie Walker (mentioned in the Mondoweiss article quoted below) was accused at the Labour Party Conference, it seems more alarm bells started ringing.

And now we have the Al-Jazeera investigation (why not BBC? Why not ITV? Why not Channel 4 or the British mainstream print media?) that revealed Shai Masot and his little network of … I think they’re being called “infiltrators”.

It is time to root out every last one of these operators.

Anybody who has been involved in the anti-Semitism witch-hunt within the Labour Party last summer needs to be pulled in and checked out. That includes Paul Staines of the Guido Fawkes blog. It includes John Mann, who accused Ken Livingstone. Jonathan Arkush, President of the Board of Deputies of British Jews, who gave evidence to the Commons Home Affairs Select Committee when it was accusing Mr Corbyn, would be worth questioning – as would every member of the committee itself, as their performances in the evidence sessions made it clear that they had already made up their minds before asking a single question.

Some of them might have nothing to do with it – perhaps all of them. But that has yet to be demonstrated.

What about Jackie Walker’s accusers in the Jewish Labour Movement – and, for that matter, in Momentum?

What about the national newspaper writers and editors who reported each story?

The list of possible suspects gets ever-larger, and is likely to grow even further, if these people are contacted and questioned in a thorough manner.

The issues here are serious. We are being told that agents of a foreign country have infiltrated our institutions and undermined our foreign policy with false accusations against our politicians and political figures.

As the extract below shows, the trail leads back at least as far as Mark Regev – and he is Israel’s ambassador to the UK.

At the very least, this is a major diplomatic incident.

So why is the Conservative Government refusing to take the necessary investigative steps?

While an Israeli operative’s efforts  to “take down” Britain’s Deputy Foreign Minister, may appear to be the biggest scandal to arise out of Al Jazeera’s investigative documentary The Lobby, what became clear to me throughout the four-part series was that the primary function of the Labour Friends of Israel (LFI) and other pro Israel groups in the UK working with the Israeli embassy was smearing Palestinians and their supporters with charges of anti Semitism and other nefarious ad hominem claims.

Jackie Walker, former vice-chair of Momentum, the left wing of the Labour party, called this “a constructed crisis for political ends”.

Evidence of this runs throughout the four-part series. Mark Regev, Israel’s ambassador to the UK, at a private meeting held during the annual Labour Party Conference in Liverpool last September, advises key activist leaders of Labour’s pro-Israel contingent on strategy and talking points:

“Why are people who consider themselves progressive in Britain, supporting reactionaries like Hamas and Hezbollah?  We’ve gotta say in the language of social democracy, I think, these people are misogynistic, they are homophobic, they are racist, they are anti-Semitic, they are reactionary. I think that’s what we need to say, it’s an important message.”

Jennifer Gerber, director of Labour Friends of Israel, is captured saying in conversation at Labour’s annual conference that anti-Semitism is “the defining narrative actually now”. Defining narrative of what? The Labour party? Or the LFI’s strategy of taking down the leftwing branch of the party?

[Ella Rose] reveals a trajectory of what could be perceived as a strategy of accusation (of anti semitism), a gotcha focus with the objective of trapping people, as a means of one-upsmanship so as to advance the profile of the Jewish Labour Movement on the right flank of Labour, aligned with the faction of Tony Blair and Gordon Brown.

The suggestion by critics that anything untoward is taking place is angrily rebuffed. Labour’s right flank postures itself as the real victims– for being accused of falsely accusing! For example, Michael Foster, a generous Jewish donor (£700,000) to Labour, last summer accused Corbyn supporters of behaving like “Nazi stormtroopers”, and was suspended by the party for the abuse, leading to yet more glaring Blame-Corbyn headlines in the British press.

As for those targeted, the bigger fish the better, beginning with Jeremy Corbin, of course, and his supporters in Momentum, like Walker. Labour party members are targeted for re-education programs through Labour Party trainings on anti-Semitism, and if you slip up you’re subject to an inquisition with the threat of being thrown out of the party, loudly and publicly with the press cheering it on.

Source: ‘Constructed crisis for political ends’: anti-Semitism claims are prime weapon for UK Israel lobby, Al Jazeera shows

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