Jewish Voice for Labour (JVL) is an organisation that appears to lend legitimacy to modern antisemitism by giving it the ‘kosher seal of approval’. JVL is led by a handful of vocal Jews from the far-left fringe, who have been accused of using their Jewish identity to render antisemitism acceptable. Its membership includes a large number of non-Jews, many of whom have been accused of antisemitism.
Zionism is the concept of self-determination for Jews. Statistically, a relatively small number of Jews are anti-Zionist.
It does not require much imagination to see how antisemites will often substitute ‘Israel’, the emblem of Jewish collective identity, for ‘the Jews’, and ‘Zionist’ for ‘Jewish’. Antisemitism always puts the Jews at the centre of everything that is bad.
Other groups led by JVL officers
Many similar groups are run by activists who are also officers of JVL. For example, Free Speech On Israel (FSOI), Jews for Boycotting Israel Goods (J-BIG) and British Committee for the Universities of Palestine (BRICUP) are all run by individuals who are also JVL officers.
All three organisations appear to have linked Twitter accounts:
JVL appears to use a Jewish identity to protect statements that have been viewed as antisemitic. Jewish identity does not, however, disqualify anyone from antisemitism. Gilad Atzmon, for example, has been the subject of campaigns by the anti-racist organisation, Hope not Hate. https://www.hopenothate.org.uk/2017/10/20/gilad-atzmon-heads-reading/
Revealing the deceit behind JVL
The IHRA definition of antisemitism was agreed by the Labour Party in 2016. In its Statement of Principles, JVL seems to oppose Labour’s adoption of the definition http://www.jewishvoiceforlabour.org.uk/antisemitism/opposition-growing-use-ihra-definition-antisemtism/.
To join JVL you apparently have to post your membership to the British Committee for the Universities of Palestine (BRICUP), a BDS group chaired by JVL leader Jonathan Rosenhead.
Regarding her role in wording the statement, founder Rachel Lever has said: ‘There is… an absolute imperative to deny to the JLM the status of Labour’s Jewish voice and the harm they can do using that monopoly. In practical terms, omitting Israel may make this alternative Jewish voice more effective more effective and authentic and deny the JLM their franchise, than if we simply invert their pro-Israel identity and become anti-Z ‘usual suspects. … the wording of the statement… is intended… to stake a claim against the heinous new ‘definitions’ of antisemitism that explicitly connect Jews to Israel.’
JVL appears to be affronted by claims that it is antisemitic. However, when Jews and anti-racists demonstrated against the rise of Labour antisemitism, JVL demonstrated against anti-racism.
All JVL leaders except one are said to have been members of the private Facebook group ‘Palestine Live’, along with alleged Holocaust deniers and white supremacists. Elleane Green, who is the founder and an admin of Palestine Live, reportedly keeps company with alleged Holocaust denier Alan Bull. She is also a member of JVL.
JVL’s membership itself seems to include Holocaust deniers, people who spread neo-Nazi material, people who advocate the shooting of Jewish toddlers and other virulent antisemites.
The JVL official account recently appears to have retweeted Holocaust denier Carlos Latuff
JVL Founder Rachel Lever appears to:
– excuse Holocaust denial and blame a conspiracy
– compare Israelis to Nazis:
– says Israel controls the BBC:
JVL Founder Naomi Wimborne-Idrissi (also FSOI, JBIG, PSC, Boycott Israel Network) appears to have:
– been part of a group of people that screamed at, spat at and tried to intimidate Haringey councillors in an attempt to prevent them from adopting the IHRA definition of antisemitism https://www.thejc.com/news/uk-news/momentum-activists-attack-labour-councillors-over-antisemitism-definition-1.441935
– hosted an event at Labour conference that featured a speaker making the comment ‘Holocaust: yes or no?’ https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2017/sep/26/labour-to-adopt-new-antisemitism-rules-after-conference-row
– laughed live on LBC radio in response to the question about antisemitism, saying: ‘What is funny about the perceived problem of anti-semitism in the Labour Party?’, ‘There’s nothing funny about a real problem of anti-semitism. I’m laughing at the way this whole thing is presented.’ https://www.lbc.co.uk/radio/presenters/nick-ferrari/nick-asks-labour-campaigner-about-anti-semitism-in/
– used a yellow star of David, associated with the Holocaust, to downplay antisemitism at the recent #EnoughIsEnough anti-racism demo:
– said live on LBC radio: ‘When it comes to the Holocaust… It’s inflicted on people in the sense that apologists for Israel use the suffering of Jews to excuse the suffering of Palestinians’ https://www.lbc.co.uk/radio/presenters/nick-ferrari/nick-asks-labour-campaigner-about-anti-semitism-in/
– spoken at the 2017 Al Quds rally, where apparently ‘Zionists’ were blamed for Grenfell, chants of death to Jews were heard, and the Hezbollah flag was displayed. https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/al-quds-day-2017-anti-israel-flag-burning-chants-rallies-tehran-a7804596.html
Mike Cushman (FSOI, J-BIG, BRICUP) appears to have:
– spoken at the 2017 Al Quds rally, where apparently ‘Zionists’ were blamed for Grenfell, chants of death to Jews were heard, and the Hezbollah flag was displayed https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/al-quds-day-2017-anti-israel-flag-burning-chants-rallies-tehran-a7804596.html
– compared Jews to Nazis, made allegations that Israeli Jews control British politics and has published conspiracy theories so virulently antisemitic that the CST (who protect the Jewish Community) profiled him https://cst.org.uk/news/blog/2017/02/15/sweeping-antisemitism-under-the-carpet
– called Jews attending an anti-racist demonstration against antisemitism ‘immoral’ http://freespeechonisrael.org.uk/beingjewish/#sthash.SQ7zLwsO.dpbs
Glynn Secker (also FSOI) appears to have:
– shared an article indicating that ISIS are in league with Israel
– spoken at an anti-Israel event where swastikas were waved and chants were heard about ‘eating Jews’ blood’. https://www.thenational.ae/world/thousands-march-through-london-in-balfour-protest-1.673070
– said that at a Labour Party conference: ‘I heckled the Jewish Labour Movement and I told them that they don’t represent all Jews in the Labour Party… they are trying to introduce a thought police type motion. They are doing this because anti-Semitism has been turned into a weapon. To attack Corbyn. To attack the Left. And to attack people who support the human rights of Palestinians. It’s shameful.’ https://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/anti-semitism-used-as-weapon-to-attack-jeremy-corbyn-says-labour-member-who-heckled-jewish-speaker_uk_57ebaaf1e4b0397f73b8407b
– said of Labour’s adoption of the IHRA definition of antisemitism (sic): ‘Any attempt to incorporate the examples in the IHRA document into a Labour Party a code of conduct should be opposed’ http://www.jewishvoiceforlabour.org.uk/jvl/glyn-secker-analyses-proposed-nec-disciplinary-rule-change/
Jonathan Rosenhead (also FSOI, BRICUP) is Vice Chair of Scottish PSC. He appears to have:
– doubled down on his accusation that ‘Zionists under Ben Gurion’ scuppered a deal to
get hundreds of thousands of Jews out of Europe just before the start of WWII
https://www.thejc.com/news/uk-news/jonathan-rosenhead-leading-member-of-projeremy-corbyn-jewish-voice-for-labour-group-claims-zionists-stopped-jews-escapingthe-holocaust-1.463493 and http://hurryupharry.org/2018/05/03/jonathan-rosenheadthe-evil-zionist-conspiracy-that-never-was/
– told Parliament about the IHRA definition of antisemitism (sic): ‘the important thing which is in the evidence from our organisation is, the, is it called the IHRA definition, the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance, it was never passed by that organisation. Been discovered recently that it… was a misleading press release that they only adopted the 40 words. And the government, the British government has adopted the whole damn thing, including a whole lot of examples, which are, including criticism of Israel might be in certain circumstances be antisemitic. This has been the most single chilling factor and my organisation together with others got a legal opinion given to them demonstrating that this has no legal effect but it has a practical effect.
The practical effect is that local authorities round the country are adopting the same, if you don’t mind me saying so fraudulent definition, which was never passed by regional organisations.’ https://jvlwatch.wordpress.com/2018/01/18/false-speech-on-israel/
– defended Ken Livingstone, who has been suspended by Labour
– appeared on Press TV after they were reportedly banned by Ofcom for being complicit in state torture
JVL Chair Jenny Manson appears to have:
– said ‘I began to identify as a Jew in order to argue against the state of Israel and its behaviour’
– said ‘We started this organisation [JVL] … to tackle allegations of antisemitism in the Labour Party’. https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=4&v=OxULZKEhN4g
Co-Chair of JVL Leah Levane appears to have:
– said Jews are ‘often agents’ of exploitation https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/labourcandidate-leah-levane-in-new-antisemitism-row-3r6vbtqkb
Diana Neslen, a member of JVL’s steering committee, appears to have:
– called Christopher Glanz ‘a human rights defender.’
Glanz is known as a hard-core antisemite in Germany, who has apparently posed as a Jew to avoid charges of antisemitism. Leading human rights organisation, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, cited Glanz within its list of the top 10 worst outbreaks of antisemitism in 2016:
Some JVL members
Tapash Abu Shaim
Posted the following:
This is from the link in the left-hand post:
Reportedly: ‘considered a man who knifed two Israeli men to death, and injured a woman and toddler, a ‘martyr’ carrying out an ‘act of revenge’.’ http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4451310/At-Labour-event-armed-cops-throw-Jews.html.
Founder and admin of the secret Facebook group ‘Palestine Live’, which recently received media focus due to its purportedly antisemitic content. JVL apparently wrote to Ms Green admitting the antisemitic content, as they appeared to be worried about ‘reputational damage’.
Appears to have posted antisemitic propaganda and chatted with self-confessed Holocaust denier Paul Eisen:
Reportedly keeps company with alleged Holocaust denier Alan Bull, who wears a JVL badge.
Allegedly ex-EDL https://www.hopenothate.org.uk/2016/11/16/a-tale-of-two-taskers/, now Labour councillor. Has shared posts by alleged neo-Nazi and Holocaust denier Gilad Atzmon. Posts videos such as: ‘Is ISIS good for Jews?’, ‘The whole story of Zionist conspiracy: the filthy history of pedophilia, murder and bigotry’ and ‘Zionist Antichrist will rule the [New World Order]’.
Defines herself as Jewish, but also described herself as having been raised as a Catholic in her autobiography. Removed as Vice Chair of Momentum https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2016/oct/03/momentums-vice-chair-removed-antisemitism-row-jackie-walker and suspended from Labour http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-kent-36203911 due to alleged antisemitism.
Has reportedly written on Facebook: ‘What debt do we owe the Jews?’ and said that Jews ‘were the chief financiers of the sugar and slave trade’, an idea pushed by alleged American antisemite Louis Farrakhan in a widely discredited book described as ‘The Bible of new anti-Semitism’ https://www.hopenothate.org.uk/tag/jackie-walker/. Has stated: ‘I still haven’t heard a definition of antisemitism that I can work with’.
Has said: ‘In terms of Holocaust Day, wouldn’t it be wonderful if Holocaust Day was open to all people who experienced Holocaust?’ https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2016/oct/03/momentums-vice-chair-removed-antisemitism-row-jackie-walker. In an interview with Channel 4 News, twice referred to Holocaust Memorial Day as a ‘celebration’ https://m.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=1292048084186657&id=521248807933259&_rdr.
Allegedly suggested an antisemitism charity be labelled ‘#scum’:
Is against diversity training for antisemitism:
Has apparently called anti-racism activists ‘genocide merchants’, ‘fundamentalists’ ‘racists’ and ‘merchants of death’:
Has compared Jewish tradition with Nazism: ‘These people believe just like the Nazis that they have the ability to define who is a Jew or not.’ http://blogs.timesofisrael.com/my-question-to-jackie-walker-setting-the-record-straight/ and https://vimeo.com/227076542.
Appears to question the figures of the Holocaust:
Has apparently said that an ‘agreement between the Zionists and the Nazis’ ‘[enabled] the Nazi regime to take hold with all the consequences’.
Has posted the following:
Under the assumed name Sophie Golding, has said: ‘How do you deal with Zio Nazis other than… find my AK47’:
Has said of Joan Ryan MP’s ‘treason against Corbyn’: ‘If anyone has rope and a tree, I’m ready.’
Has posted the following:
JVL consistently speaks out against those who raise concerns about antisemitism, and regularly fails to oppose antisemitism that arises within the context of anti-Zionist politics. Its existence and activities allow a section of the Labour Party to suggest that their agenda has support within the Jewish community. JVL and its leadership is not only made up of people who apparently breach the IHRA Definition of Antisemitism, but it also appears to lend the seal of approval for those breaches.