Corbyn compared Israeli occupation of the West Bank to the Nazis

Corbyn in fresh anti-Semitism storm as 2013 video emerges of him comparing the Israeli occupation of the West Bank to the Nazi takeover of Europe

  • The Labour leader made the ‘appalling’ comment at an event on Palestine
  • Labour friends of Israel condemned Jeremy Corbyn for making the comments
  • Jeremy Corbyn denied comparing the Israeli state to Adolf Hitler’s regime 
  • Labor ex minster apologises for anti-Semitism scandal in Jewish newspaper ad
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Jeremy Corbyn was today accused of making a direct comparison between the Israeli occupation of the West Bank and the Nazi takeover of Europe.

A video has surfaced of him making the ‘appalling’ comment at an event in 2013, when he was still a backbencher.

The statement appears to flout the globally-accepted definition of anti-Semitism which says it is anti-Semitic to compare the Israeli government with the Nazis.

But Labour said Mr Corbyn was referring to all occupations in the Second World War, not just that of Adolf Hitler’s regime.

The Labour leader is facing mounting pressure to come back from his summer holiday to get a grip on the scandal tearing his party apart.

The Board of Deputies of British Jews said Mr Corbyn must stop being ‘invisible’ and  ‘come out of hiding’ and get back to Westminster.

While ex Scottish Labour leader Jim Murphy took out a full page advert in a Jewish newspaper apologising for the scandal and laying the blame with the Labour leader.

A video has surfaced of Jeremy Corbyn (pictured) making the ‘appalling’ comment at an event in 2013, when he was still a backbencher

  • Ex Scottish Labour leader apologises for the anti-Semitism… ‘We have a thing called freedom of speech in this country’:…

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It comes a week after Mr Corbyn was forced to apologise after being exposed for appearing at an event in 2010 where other speakers compared Israel to the Nazis. 

What is the timeline of anti-Semitic scandals which have erupted under Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership?

Jeremy Corbyn (pictured) has been accused of failing to tackle the racism among his supporters 

The anti-Semitism scandal has dogged the Labour party since Jeremy Corbyn was elected leader  in 2015.

Here is a timeline of the controversies: 

April 2016:

Labour MP Naz Shah is suspended for anti-Semitic posts – including one in which she appeared to endorse calls for Israelis to be deported to the US. 

She apologised and was given a formal warning.  

Ken Livingstone goes on the radio to defend Ms Shah – but sparks fresh controversy by claiming that Hitler supported Zionism. 

He is suspended by Labour but refuses to apologise and has repeated the claim many times.

He eventually quits Labour two years later, saying his suspension have become a distraction.

June 2016: 

A two-month inquiry by civil liberties campaigner Shami Chakrabarti finds that Labour is not overrun by anti-Semitism. 

But the launch is overshadowed when Jewish Labour MP Ruth Smeeth flees it in tears after being accused by Corbyn supporter Marc Wadsworth of colluding with the press.

Critics accuse the report of being a whitewash and Ms Chakrabarti is widely criticised for accepting a peerage from Jeremy Corbyn shortly afterwards.

October 2016: 

The Home Affairs Select Committee says Labour is guilty of incompetence over its handling of anti-Semitism and of creating a safe space for people with ‘vile attitudes towards Jewish people’.

March 2018: 

It is revealed that Jeremy Corbyn defended an artist who painted an anti-Semitic mural and said the offensive art should be removed.

He apologises saying he did not properly look at the picture before he made the post.

Jewish leaders take the unprecedented step of holding a demonstration outside Parliament protesting Mr Corbyn’s failure to tackle anti-Semitism.

Several Labour MPs address the crowds.

April 2018:

Marc Wadsworth is expelled from Labour after being accused of anti-Semitism. 

Meanwhile, Labour Jewish MPs tell of the anti-Semitic abuse they have suffered in a powerful parliamentary debate – and round on their leader for failing to tackle it. 

July 2018:

The Labour leadership sparks fresh anger by failing to fully adopt the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s (IHRA) definition of anti-Semitism

And Peter Willsman, a strong ally of Jeremy Corbyn, is secretly taped ranting that ‘Jewish Trump fanatics’ invented the anti-Semitism storm engulfing Labour. 

In an angry diatribe at a meeting of Labour’s ruling executive committee, he said he was ‘amazed’ there was evidence party members hated Jews.

He claimed ‘some of these people in the Jewish community support Trump – they are Trump fanatics and all the rest of it’ before shouting: ‘So I am not going to be lectured to by Trump fanatics making up duff information without any evidence at all.’

August 2018:

Jeremy Corbyn issues a video insisting he is committed to tackling the racism – but it is panned by Jewish leaders.

Corbynistas mount a social media campaign to get deputy Labour leader Tom Watson to quit after he criticises the party’s handling of anti-Semitism. 

The campaign attracts 50,000 posts and makes the hashtag ‘ResignWatson’ trend on Twitter. 

Labour Friends of Israel tore into Mr Corbyn over the remark, saying: ‘The Labour party’s once proud record on fighting racism and the protection of British Jews from anti-Semitism is being sacrificed to protect Jeremy Corbyn’s reputation.’

The video was posted on the Twitter account of The Golem, who collates examples of anti-Semitism.

Earlier this week the same account published a 2011 video of Mr Corbyn apparently questioning Israel’s very right to exist.

In an interview with Iranian state TV, the then backbench MP said that the view that Israel had a right to exist was an example of ‘bias’ at the BBC.

This appears to contravene the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance definition which states it is anti-Semitic to ‘deny the Jewish people their right to self-determination’.

The latest video shows Mr Corbyn making a speech at an event hosted by the Palestinian Return Centre.

He said: ‘The West Bank is under occupation of the very sort that is recognisable by many people in Europe who suffered occupation during the Second World War with the endless roadblocks, imprisonment, irrational behaviour by the military and the police.’

Last night Jennifer Gerber, director of Labour Friends of Israel, said: ‘Earlier this week, we discovered that Jeremy Corbyn engaged in wild conspiracy theories questioning Israel’s right to exist.

‘Today, it is revealed he drew comparisons between conditions in the West Bank and the Nazi occupation of Europe.

‘It is increasingly clear that his opposition to adopting the IHRA definition in full appears to be overwhelmingly driven by his own appalling past statements.

‘The Labour party’s once proud record on fighting racism and the protection of British Jews from anti-Semitism is being sacrificed to protect Jeremy Corbyn’s reputation.’

It is not the first time the Labour leader has been accused of having compared the actions of the Israeli government with the Nazi regime.

In a rally in 2010 he said the siege of Gaza had lasted longer than those of Leningrad and Stalingrad.

A Labour spokeswoman said: ‘Jeremy was describing conditions of conditions of occupations in World War Two in Europe, of which there are multiple examples, not comparing the Israeli state to Nazis.’ 

It comes as Mr Murphy has today taken out a full page advert in a Jewish newspaper apologising for the anti-Semitism scandal.

He said he took the dramatic step of paying for the slot in the Jewish Telegraph because he could not stand silent as his party ‘turned its back’ on Jews.

The ex Cabinet minister launched a blistering attack on the Labour leader in the advert, accusing him of not doing ‘nearly enough’ to kick anti-Semites out of the party. 

The astonishing attack comes as Jewish leaders furiously demanded that Mr Corbyn ‘come out of hiding’ from his holiday by the seaside and tackle the crisis.

In the advert, Mr Murphy branded Mr Corbyn and his allies ‘intellectually arrogant, and emotionally inept’ and said they have ‘deliberately turned their back on British Jewry’. 

He added: ‘Today there’s a small, but growing minority of anti-Semitic conspiracy theorists amongst the membership of the Labour Party.

‘Jeremy Corbyn is not doing nearly enough to throw out the anti-Semites found within grassroots and online Labour.’

He laid the lame for the crisis squarely at the feet of the Labour leader and his supporters.

Mr Murphy, who lost his seat in 2015, said: ‘No party leader has the right to hatter the relationship between British labour and British Jewry.

‘The Jewish community and everyone else who is offended by Labour’s stance are being asked to accept quarter-baked platitudinous  Labour apologies for the “upset that has been caused”.

‘Instead what’s needed urgently is Labour action against the sickening anti-Jewish racism that is the actual cause of the offence in the first place.’  

Meanwhile, the Board of Deputies of British Jews president Marie van der Zyl warned the Labour leader ‘you cannot lead through invisibility’ and said that he must come back form holiday to get a grip on the crisis.

Writing in Jewish News, she said: ‘He is clearly just hoping it will go away. I’ve got some bad news for him – unless he does what he needs to do, it won’t.’

Jeremy Corbyn (pictured on Wednesday at a tea room in Somerset where he has been on holiday) has been urged by Jewish leaders to come back from holiday and tackle the scandal 

She added: ‘I call on Jeremy Corbyn to come out of hiding and do the right thing.’      

Why is Labour’s new code of conduct on anti-Semitism so controversial?

The Labour anti-Semitism row erupted again after the party leadership refused to fully adopt the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s (IHRA) definition.

The party’s code explicitly endorses the IHRA working definition of anti-Semitism and includes a list of behaviours likely to be regarded as anti-Semitic copied word-for-word from the organisation’s own document.

But it omits four examples from the IHRA list:

– Accusing Jewish people of being more loyal to Israel than their home country;

– Claiming that Israel’s existence as a state is a racist endeavour;

– Requiring higher standards of behaviour from Israel than other nations; and

– Comparing contemporary Israeli policies to those of the Nazis.

Labour insisted that while the examples are not reproduced word-for-word, they are covered in the new code. 

But critics say the decision to not include the four examples allows anti-Semitism to continue to fester and go unchallenged among party supporters.  

The Labour leader has been accused of purposely ignoring the racism which festers among some of his supporters.

While Labour MP Dame Margaret Hodge – who lost family members in the holocaust – says Mr Corbyn and his allies are using the row to try to purge the party of his moderate critics

It emerged yesterday that Mr Corbyn has been given a month to back down over the anti-Semitism row or face losing the backing of his powerful allies in Momentum.

The grassroots organisation helped install and keep Mr Corbyn in power.  

The Labour leader has rebuffed demands by Jewish leaders and many of his own MPs to fully adopt the international definition of anti-Semitism – a move they insist is crucial if the party is to finally get on top of the scandal.

The party has adopted some of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s definition.

But crucially it has not included several of the examples they use to illustrate it – including that Israel’s existence as a state is a racist endeavor. 

Mr Corbyn has now been told by Momentum he must formally sign up to the definition at a crunch party meeting in early September, the Politico website reports.

While the GMB trade union – one of the UK’s biggest trade unions and a major force in Labour – has also come put to publicly demand the same. 

If he refuses they could pull support for him – triggering what could be the biggest crisis in his leadership since the failed coup against him in the summer of 2016.  

Jim Murphy said he took the dramatic step of paying for the slot in the Jewish Telegraph because he could not stand silent as his party ‘turned its back’ on Jews.

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