Has the American mainstream already been ‘Corbynized’?
Jews in the United States are witnessing some progressive circles embrace a compliance with anti-Semitic rhetoric.
Headlines in 2019 that read “British Jews are worried about Corbyn and the Labour Party” and “Jeremy Corbyn’s anti-Semitism problem” have found new light within American polity. The existential threat that former Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn posed to his country’s Jewish population should have served as a warning to Jews across the West. Evolving progressive “think” does not make room for the Jewish plight.
Once the political home for many British Jews, the Labour Party took on a new form after the election of Jeremy Corbyn in 2015. Corbyn’s rise to leadership was accompanied by a plethora of anti-Semitic controversies. In 2009, he referred to Hamas and Hezbollah, designated terror organizations by the United States and the European Union, as “our friends.” Two years later, Corbyn blamed the “Zionist lobby” for encouraging the deportation efforts of Sheikh Raed Salah from the United Kingdom. Salah is well-known for his Jew-hatred, perpetuating the age-old blood libel canard in a sermon and alleging that the Israeli secret service was behind the 9/11 attacks. A few months later, Corbyn publically supported a mural depicting a group of Jewish bankers with elongated noses playing a game of monopoly atop the back of naked workers.
In addition to these public controversies, Corbyn fueled a rising tolerance of anti-Semitism within the Labour Party. By 2020, a prominent British human-rights group, the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC), completed a thorough investigation into the party and disclosed their findings. In a nutshell, their analysis “pointed to a culture within the party which, at best, did not do enough to prevent anti-Semitism and, at worst, could be seen to accept it.”
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Rt Hon Jeremy Corbyn, Leader of the Labour Party, UK by Chatham House is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
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