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Monday, 9 October 2017

Moshe Machover – Explosion of Anger At McNicol’s Expulsion of Israeli Anti-Zionist

Keep the  Pressure Up as Witch-hunters back off from accusation of anti-Semitism

Labour's witch hunters are using a speech at the Communist University 2016 with Tony Greenstein as a pretext for expulsion - the Zionists are attacking the basic right to free speech
 The motions at the bottom of this article from different Labour Party branches are just the tip of the iceberg.  Anger has been mounting among Labour activists at the expulsion of Israeli anti-Zionist and Marxist Moshe Machover.  When news broke many branches, including Moshe’s own, passed resolutions condemning what had happened.  This weekend the Labour Representation Committee added their voice to the outrage as did the Jewish Socialists Group, which had been more hesitant in taking up the case of Jackie Walker and Ken Livingstone.


McNicol’s witchhunters resorted to ‘auto-exclusion’ which conveniently avoids such niceties as a hearing and having to produce evidence.  Instead, on the say so of Sam Matthews, a bureaucratic pipsqueak, you are deemed guilty and expelled.  Guilty until proven innocent, except there is normally no procedure to prove yourself innocent.  It is quite Kafkaesque.  In 5 years time Moshe can apply to rejoin.

Anyone who knows Moshe, as has been my privilege over the past quarter of a century, knows that he doesn’t have a racist bone in his body.  He is a Marxist and opposes all forms of racism and chauvinism, so it was natural that he should oppose Zionism, an ideology and practice of Jewish supremacy.  The idea that Moshe is an anti-Semite is laughable but it is also dangerous.  If someone who is an anti-racist can be declared an anti-Semite on the basis of a definition of anti-Semitism drawn up by Zionists, then it renders the term ‘anti-Semitism’ meaningless.  Anyone can be an anti-Semite, it is entirely subjective.  The only people who benefit from this are genuine anti-Semites who turn round and say that this is the ritual accusation levelled at critics of Israel.
The only people who benefit from conflation of anti-Zionism & anti-Semitism are anti-semites like the ex-Israeli Gilad Atzmon
It is the ‘boy cried wolf’ syndrome.  Cry ‘anti-Semite’ for long enough and people will become immune to genuine anti-Semitism.  This happened not so long ago when Gilad Atzmon, a famous jazz player and ex-Israeli began engaging in conspiracy theories about Jews and flirted with Holocaust denial.  Many people warmed to him despite what people like myself said precisely because they assumed that such accusations of anti-Semitism were false.  It took a joint letter by over 20 Palestinians and Arabs, led by Ali Abunimah of Electronic Intifada, Professor Joseph Massad of Columbia University and Omar Barghouti of the BDS Boycott National Committee before Atzmon was finally excluded from the Palestine solidarity movement.  See Granting No Quarter: A Call for the Disavowal of the Racism and Antisemitism of Gilad Atzmon and A Guide to the Sayings of Gilad Atzmon, the anti-Semitic jazzman
The fact that conflating anti-Zionism with anti-Semitism is helpful to genuine anti-Semites doesn’t bother Zionists one iota.  Zionism has never fought anti-Semitism, which is hatred of Jews as Jews.  Zionism is concerned with one thing and one thing only – defending Israel.
Historically Zionists and anti-Semites got on like a house on fire.  The anti-Semites wanted Jews out of ‘their’ countries and Zionism was only too happy to oblige.  The Zionists were very understanding of anti-Semitism because they too wanted to create a racially based state. 
Noone will be happier at Moshe Machover's expulsion than Gilad Atzmon, whose anti-semitism is a variant of Zionism

That is why, when the Nazis came to power in Germany, the only Jews who welcomed them to power were the Zionists.  Berl Katznelson, David Ben Gurion’s deputy in the Palestine Jewish Agency, saw the rise of Hitler as “an opportunity to build and flourish like none we have ever had or ever will have”.  [Nicosia, Zionism and Anti-Semitism in Nazi Germany, p.91. Tom Segev, The Seventh Million p.18 attributes this quote to a report by Moshe Beilinson, a cofounder of  Davar, to Katznelson.  When an article by Moshe was reprinted by Labour Party Marxists, the Zionists thought that they could use the newly adopted International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance definition of anti-Semitism to secure his expulsion
Moshe Machover and myself on BBC1's Big Questions
.
 Background

The Labour Party conference just gone was a dismal affair for the Zionists.  Not only did the new Jewish Voice for Labour get going with a bang on the Monday of conference and not only was Free Speech on Israel meeting earlier in the day packed out but Conference this year was a very left-wing affair.  Up to 80% of constituency delegates were from the left.
Conference reserved their loudest cheers for when Jeremy Corbyn mentioned the Palestinians. When two Jewish anti-Zionists – Naomi Wimborne-Iddrissi and Leah Levane - came to the rostrum they were cheered to the rafters and given standing ovations.  When they declared that they weren’t anti-Semites everyone, knew exactly what they meant.  People were not prepared to buy into false anti-Semitism nonsense of the past two years.
To cap it all Corbyn himself decided he preferred the company of Daily Mirror hacks to that of the Labour Friends of Israel and war criminal Mark Regev.  When the anti-Corbyn Joan Ryan MP and Chair of LFI read out a message from Jeremy she was greeted with cries of ‘where is he’  ‘why isn’t he here’.  The obvious answer, that he has no reason to meet with his political enemies hadn’t sunk in. The Zionists think they have the right to summon Corbyn as if he was some naughty boy.

It was in this gloom that Newmark and the JLM deputy Mike Katz hatched an idea.  Katz had already been mightily annoyed with a Labour Party Marxist article, written by Moshe, which was distributed to conference entitled ‘Anti-Zionism does not equal Anti-Semitism’.  
Iain McNicol - having done his best to prevent a Labour government he is now desperately trying to revive the Tory tabloid's 'anti-semitism' campaign
What’s worse Moshe’s article made reference to a speech of Reinhardt Heydrich.
Heydrich was one of the coldest and bloody of the Nazis. Haunted by rumours he was half-Jewish he went out of his way to disprove them.  Assassinated by Czech partisans in 1942, he was justly described by Gerald Reitlinger in ‘The Final Solution’ (p.13) as the ‘engineer’ of the Final Solution. Heydrich convened the Wannsee Conference in Berlin in January 1942 to organise the Final Solution.  In fact the Final Solution was been underway for over 6 months with the invasion of Russia.  Arguably the main purpose of the conference was to extend the Holocaust to Western Europe.  Heydrich was quoted as saying:

National socialism has no intention of attacking the Jewish people in any way. On the contrary, the recognition of Jewry as a racial community based on blood, and not as a religious one, leads the German government to guarantee the racial separateness of this community without any limitations. The government finds itself in complete agreement with the great spiritual movement within Jewry itself, so-called Zionism, with its recognition of the solidarity of Jewry throughout the world and the rejection of all assimilationist ideas. On this basis, Germany undertakes measures that will surely play a significant role in the future in the handling of the Jewish problem around the world.
Second Letter in 3 days from Witchhunter Sam Matthews


Of course it was a lie to say that the Nazis had no intention of attacking the Jews, but his comments about being in agreement with the Zionists were true.  There is ample proof from directives that Heydrich issued to the Gestapo that the anti-Zionist and ‘assimilationist’  
Jewish groups were to be persecuted.  On 28th January 1935 Heydrich had issued a directive stating that 
‘the activity of the Zionist-oriented youth organizations that are engaged in the occupational restructuring of the Jews for agriculture and manual trades prior to their emigration to Palestine lies in the interest of the National Socialist state’s leadership.’ These organisations therefore ‘are not to be treated with that strictness that it is necessary to apply to the members of the so-called German-Jewish organizations (assimilationists)’.
BBC Big Questions with Moshe Machover and Daphne Baram
This  quote can be found in War Against the Jews by the right-wing Zionist historian Lucy Dawidowicz, on page 118, and also in Francis Nicosia’s book  Zionism and Anti-Semitism in Nazi Germany. p.119.  Moshe also quoted from the Introduction to the Nuremburg Laws of September 1935 which said that:

If the Jews had a state of their own, in which the bulk of their people were at home, the Jewish question could already be considered solved today … The ardent Zionists of all people have objected least of all to the basic ideas of the Nuremberg laws, because they know that these laws are the only correct solution for the Jewish people too 

This quote can be found in Nicosia’s ZANG on p.108.  Katz’s reaction to this article was predictable.  Moshe was an ‘amoral historian’.  Why?  Because he insisted on telling inconvenient truths.  He didn’t challenge the accuracy of what Moshe said, what he challenged was Moshe’s right to say it. 

Thus a decision was made by the leadership of the JLM to report Moshe under the IHRA definition of anti-Semitism to the Labour Party apparatchiks of the Compliance Unit.  Sure enough last week, Sam Matthews, Chair of the Disputes Committee (their job is to go around stirring up disputes!) sent a letter to Moshe telling him he was ‘auto excluded’.  
Matthews explained in the letter that Moshe’s article for LPM ‘was apparently anti-Semitic’ because it ‘appears to meet the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance definition of anti-Semitism’.  And what was Moshe’s offence?  Well Matthews explained that:

‘perjorative language which may cause offence to Jewish people is not acceptable... Language that may be perceived as provocative, insensitive or offensive...’

This seems a clear attempt to reinstate the rule change that the Jewish Labour Movement had failed to introduce this year.  The JLM had originally proposed that where someone perceived that they were a ‘victim’ of a racial incident, that view triumphed over everything.  Any common and garden Zionist or racist could say that criticism of their politics was racist and that would be that.  A subjective definition of racism triumphed over evidence.  

Attacking the Israeli state as a racist state would be deemed racist in itself, even though it might be true.  In adopting this interpretation of the rules, Sam Matthews was putting himself above the Labour Party conference.

The irony is that Moshe, who is himself Jewish, is being expelled for anti-Semitism.  Clearly Moshe’s language offends certain Jews i.e. racist supporters of Israeli Apartheid.  To Matthews, McNicol and their ilk they are the real Jews.  To believe, as these people do, that only racist Jews are representative of Jews is in itself anti-Semitic.  To believe that all Jews support Israel and would therefore be offended by what is uncontested history, is also anti-Semitic.

The Zionist had tried after our success at conference to firstly suggest that the Free Speech on Israel meeting had been anti-Semitic by trying to pretend that the main speaker Miko Peled had advocated for Holocaust denial.  This however fell flat on its face.  See Open Letter to the Lying Leader of Brighton and Hove City Council, Warren Morgan
Things are not going well for the Zionists.  Allied as they are to Luke Akehurst and the right-wing of the Labour Party they are now politically isolated.  Their main base of support lies in the Tory tabloid press, which is racist to the core but always concerned about ‘anti-Semitism’ and the fast diminishing ranks of the Labour Right.

Overwhelmed by the outpouring of support for Moshe, McNicol’s catspaw Sam Matthews sent an unprecedented second letter to Machover 3 days after the first letter.  It stated in its opening paragraph ‘representations have been made to the Labour Party on your behalf to clarify its position on your membership.’ Well that was one way of putting it!
The letter not only disavows anti-Semitism as a reason for the expulsion but offers Moshe the opportunity to ‘challenge the validity of the evidence attached to the letter sent to you on October 3rd

This is unprecedented.  When you are auto-excluded that is that.  There is no right of appeal.  Correspondence is ignored yet here were the Compliance Unit and Matthews voluntarily offering Moshe a means of overturning their own decision.  Why?  Because there has been such a massive upsurge in anger at this nakedly unjust and unfair expulsion, that McNicol and co. have been forced to backtrack.  It is understood that Corbyn’s office have also been involved in this decision.

Katz and Newmark are nothing if they are not stupid.  When my friends Mel Melvin, the Women’s Officer in Brighton Kemptown was expelled for ‘anti-Semitism’ and Riad, an Executive Member of Hove CLP was expelled for having served a prison sentence for sanctions busting in Iraq, no right of appeal or review was offered.  It is only because of the uproar over Moshe that McNicol has been forced into granting at least the semblance of fair process.

Of course Moshe is well known.  He is a distinguished academic in his own right, being an Emeritus Professor at King’s College London.  Not unnaturally the bureaucrats of Southside, the Labour Party HQ, not being the brightest specimens of humanity, have been overwhelmed.  Matthew and McNicol probably genuinely don’t realise that the right to give offence or heaven forbid, be controversial, is the essence of free speech and indeed socialism.  The idea that you can’t offend racists would seem, at least to most people, absurd.

Of course it is still possible that Moshe’s representations will be turned down and that is why we must ensure that the pressure is kept on, not least on Corbyn to come out openly in favour of free speech for anti-Zionists and supporters of the Palestinians.
Below are just some of the resolutions passed by Labour Party branches and there is also an excellent article by Bob Pitt

Tony Greenstein

Solidarity with Moshé Machover! The Labour movement speaks out

The disgraceful expulsion of Moshé Machover from the Labour Party

Bob Pitt

Moshé Machover writes:

In fact I never had any “organisational involvement” with the CPGB. I am not and have never been a member. I use their paper and meetings as a forum to express my own ideas.

My “involvement” with Labour Party Marxists (LPM) is zero. My article they printed was in fact a reprint of an article published months ago in the Weekly Worker. I allowed them to reprint it – as I would allow any paper and anyone to reprint my articles.

Resolutions

This resolution was passed on 5 October 2017 by the Queen's Park branch of the Labour Party (part of Hampstead & Kilburn CLP). This is the branch to which Moshe belonged until he was summarily and arbitrarily expelled by the party HQ.

This branch calls upon the Labour Party's Head of Disputes to do the following:
1) Rescind immediately the expulsion of Professor Moshe Machover;
2) Rescind immediately the letter informing Professor Machover of his expulsion.
These 2 actions should be taken because:
First, the allegations against Mr. Machover are unsubstantiated; and, second, the process through which the decision to expel him was taken seems to have him guilty until proved innocent, rather than presumed innocent until proved guilty. The letter to Professor Machover and the apparent lack of process seem both unworthy of the Labour Party and unjust.
We further call on the Labour party to protect the right of members to contribute to the political debate across numerous platforms, without expressing support for other political parties or views contrary to the values of the Labour party.
All in agreement, and two abstentions.

Campaign news
7th October 2017
Labour Representation Committee Statement

Professor Emeritus Moshe Machover has been expelled from the Labour Party. Machover is Jewish and Israeli, the co-founder of Matzpen, the socialist organisation which from the ‘60s to the ‘80s brought together Arab and Jewish opposition to the illegal occupation of Palestine.

The Head of Disputes has accused Machover of writing an “apparently anti-Semitic article” according to the - extremely contentious -  International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) definition (which conflates all criticism of Israeli policies with antisemitism); he further accused him of “membership or support for another political party, or a political organisation with incompatible aims to the Labour Party”, because he has, on occasion, written for the Weekly Worker.
His principal ‘crime’ is the accusation of antisemitism. Anyone who looks objectively at the evidence will see that what he is ‘guilty’ of is putting the record straight on historical links between some German Zionists and the Nazis. Clearly uncomfortable historical facts should be banned. One report on the issue said it was outrageous that he had quoted “the author of the holocaust”, and went on to quote the same Nazi!

It is significant that the Compliance Unit has cited the IHRA definition of antisemitism, confirming the fears expressed by many, including the new organisation Jewish Voice for Labour, that the new rule on antisemitism passed at Labour Party conference could be used in this way.

By throwing in that Machover has written articles for the newspaper Weekly Worker and spoken at events organised by them, the Compliance Unit claims this automatically makes him ineligible for membership of the Labour Party under the rule which states “A member of the party who joins and/or supports a political organisation other than an official Labour Group or unit of the Party or supports any candidate who stands against an official Labour candidate, or publicly declares their intent to stand against a Labour candidate, shall automatically be ineligible to be or remain a party member,  subject to the provisions of part 6.I.2 of the disciplinary rules”. 

Thus is the catch-all which has also been used to exclude supporters of Socialist Appeal and the Alliance for Workers’ Liberty. In theory, it could be used to exclude supporters of this organisation, the Labour Representation Committee, Momentum or even Progress, and has to go. Members should have the right to organise within the Party (though obviously not to support candidates against it).
The expulsion of Machover comes after calls for action against alleged antisemitism by leaders of the Jewish Labour Movement. This follows support given by delegates at Party conference to speakers who argued that many allegations of antisemitism are spurious. This, together with Jeremy Corbyn’s call in his speech for justice for the Palestinians, clearly spurred the Compliance Unit to lash out in response.. Leaders of the JLM are encouraging the use of disciplinary methods rather than engage in political debate. Association with the Weekly Worker is the least of their concerns.

The Chakrabarti Inquiry found that the Party’s “ complaints and disciplinary procedures . . . lacked sufficient transparency, uniformity and expertise . . .” and called for “the vital legal principles of due process (or natural justice) and proportionality”. Machover, who denies the accusations, has not been given the opportunity to challenge either the accusation of antisemitism nor his alleged support for another party or organisation.

The Labour Representation Committee supports all calls for Machover’s expulsion to be immediately rescinded and for due process to take place so that he is given the opportunity to challenge the claims of the Head of Disputes. Labour Party and union organisations should pass resolutions along these lines and submit them to the NEC for urgent response.

Resolution passed unanimously by West Branch Hastings and Rye Labour Party
On Tuesday 3rd October, Labour Party member Professor Emeritus Dr. Moshe Machover was summarily expelled from the Labour Party, based on allegations which he denies. Dr. Machover is Jewish and Israeli, the distinguished co-founder of Matzpen, the socialist organisation which from the early 1960s to the 1980s brought together Arab and Jewish opposition to the illegal occupation of Palestine. Dr Machover has been an activist for decades and is an asset to the Labour Party. It is an act of self-harm to expel such a valuable member.

However, we would be demanding reinstatement for any member, regardless of their political perspective who has been treated like this because we are equally concerned that this action was taken without a clear and transparent process ‘in accordance with the principles of natural justice and proportionality”. These were within the recommendations of the Chakrabarti Review, which seem to have been largely ignored. These included looking at other penalties short of suspension and expulsion .

We demand the immediate reinstatement of Moshe Machover and a public apology. In addition we demand a clear and public assurance that no member of this Party will again be treated in such an appalling manner and that in future, any actions will be taken only following such a clear process, as outlined in the Chakrabarti Report.  We are also very concerned at the apparent misuse of the IHRA definition of antisemitism to stifle free expression, including the right to non abusive criticism of the State of Israel as we had outlined in our own Rule change. We insist that the Party firmly commits to uphold the right to non abusive free speech in all its political discourse.

____________________
Emergency Motion. Herne Hill Branch,  5.9.17
Passed nem con
This Branch notes the NEC policy that auto-exclusions ceased following the party’s adoption of the recommendations of the Chkrabarti Report, that the Party’s policy is now to follow due process, based on natural justice, in relation to disciplinary procedures.

The proper application of this policy is pertinent to a very recent case where a long standing member of Hampstead and Kilburn Branch, MM, has been expelled without due process, having not been informed in advance of the action, not having been suspended pending investigation, and where the grounds for expulsion are not even that he is, or ever has been, a member of a proscribed organisation (he has, in fact, never been a member of the organisations cited).

The grounds are that he has attended their public meetings and has had articles published in their journals. In none of the articles cited as evidence did MM in any way advocate support for these organisations nor advocate opposition in any way whatsoever to the Labour Party.

The Chakrabarti Report, found the Labour Party’s  “complaints and disciplinary procedures . . . lacked sufficient transparency, uniformity and expertise . . .” and “failed to observe the vital legal principles of due process (or natural justice) and proportionality”.

The summary expulsion this week of MM is a deeply disturbing repetition of this bad practice and heralds a serious curtailment of free speech within the Party. It sets a frightening precedent and flies in the face of a party which is working to be more democratic and accountable and to adopt procedures based on natural justice.

This Branch therefore calls for the Labour Party’s Head of Disputes immediately to rescind the expulsion of MM, a member of Hampstead and Kilburn CLP, so that due process can take place, and MM can be given the opportunity to challenge the allegations made against him in proper hearings.
____________________
The following resolution was adopted nem con on 4 October 2017 by the West Hampstead and Fortune Green branch of the Labour Party, which is part of the Hampstead and Kilburn Constituency LP
This West Hampstead and Fortune Green branch / Hampstead and Kilburn CLP is outraged that:
  • Professor Emeritus Moshe Machover has been expelled from the Party. Professor Machover is Jewish and Israeli, the distinguished co-founder of Matzpen, the socialist organisation which from the 60s to the 80s brought together Arab and Jewish opposition to the illegal occupation of Palestine.
  • The Head of Disputes has accused Professor Machover of writing an “apparently anti-Semiitic article” according to the new IHRA definition, and further accused him of “membership or support for another political party, or a political organisation with incompatible aims to the Labour Party.”
This West Hampstead and Fortune Green branch / Hampstead and Kilburn CLP notes that:
  • The Chakrabarti inequiry found that the party’s “… complaints and disciplinary procedures … lacked sufficient transparency, uniformity and expertise…” and called for “the vital legal principles of due process (or natural justice) and proportionality
  • The IHRA definition is being monitored by Camden Council to ensure that it is not used to stifle free expression and criticism of Israeli policies.
  • Professor Machover who denies the accusations, has not been given the opportunity to challenge either the accusation of anti-Semitism nor his alleged support for another party or organisation.
  • This expulsion is a frightening precedent in a party which is working to be more democratic and called for, in the words of its leader Jeremy Corbyn, ‘support to end the oppression of the Palestinian people, the 50-year occupation and the illegal settlement expansion’.
This West Hampstead and Fortune Green branch / Hampstead and Kilburn CLP therefore calls for:
  • Professor Machover’s expulsion to be immediately rescinded and for any allegations against him to be investigated in accordance with due process so that he is given the opportunity to challenge the claims of the Head of Disputes.
  • This Branch Labour Party condemns the expulsion of Professor Moshe Machover, before any hearing of evidence against him, from the Labour Party.This branch notes the expulsion has been justified though a process of guilt by association and was sparked by a totally unfounded allegation that Professor Machover, who is Israeli and Jewish by origin, wrote an antisemitic article. This allegation is based highly selective quoting from a long and closely argued article and by an extreme interpretation of the International Holocaust Remembrance Association working definition of antisemitism that “pejorative language which may cause offence to Jewish people” is antisemitic.  This branch therefore demands from the Party: his immediate reinstatement; an apology for such tarnishing of his reputation; and an urgent review of Party disciplinary procedures so such an injustice is not repeated.
____________________
Motion passed on October 4 by Highams Park Labour Party Branch (Chingford and Woodford Green CLP)
This branch calls upon the Labour Party’s Head of Disputes immediately to rescind the expulsion of Professor Moshe Machover, a member of Hampstead and Kilburn CLP, so that due process can take place and Prof. Machover can be given the opportunity to challenge the allegations made against him.

Supporting argument

As outlined in a statement from the Jewish Socialists’ Group, Moshe Machover – a lifelong Israeli socialist, anti-racist and anti-imperialist, who has lived in Britain since 1968 – has been expelled from the Labour Party accused of writing “an apparently antisemitic article” and accused of “involvement and support for” two organisations, the Labour Party Marxists and the Communist Party of Great Britain.

The accusation regarding the “antisemitic” article references the controversial, flawed definition of antisemitism, which the JSG and many others on the left have challenged. The article by Moshe Machover, that has been cited, is a critique of the political ideology of Zionism, not of Jews. Indeed the article exposes antisemitic ideas.

As the JSG further notes, the action against Professor Machover represents a McCarthyite-style attempt to expel members for alleged “involvement and support for” other left groups on the basis of writing articles and attending and participating in meetings. It is common practice for Labour members of all levels to speak and participate in events of other groups, and have articles published, representing their individual viewpoints, in a range of publications.

According to the Chakrabarti Report, the Labour Party’s “complaints and disciplinary procedures . . . lacked sufficient transparency, uniformity and expertise . . .” and failed to observe “the vital legal principles of due process (or natural justice) and proportionality”. Members deserve to see these principles applied in all disciplinary cases, including Moshe Machover’s.

The expulsion letter sent to Prof Machover by Sam Matthews is attached. Evidence presented appears in the form of articles written for the CPGB paper and a report of a discussion in which Prof. Machover participated.
____________________
Suggested Branch/CLP model motions:
1.
This Branch Labour Party condemns the expulsion of Professor Moshe Machover, before any hearing of evidence against him, from the Labour Party.

This branch notes the expulsion has been justified though a process of guilt by association and was sparked by a totally unfounded allegation that Professor Machover, who is Israeli and Jewish by origin, wrote an antisemitic article. This allegation is based highly selective quoting from a long and closely argued article and by an extreme interpretation of the International Holocaust Remembrance Association working definition of antisemitism that “pejorative language which may cause offence to Jewish people” is antisemitic.

This branch therefore demands from the Party: his immediate reinstatement; an apology for such tarnishing of his reputation; and an urgent review of Party disciplinary procedures so such an injustice is not repeated.
2.
This Branch/CLP is shocked that:

Professor Emeritus Moshe Machover has been summarily expelled from the Party.
Prof Machover is Jewish and Israeli, the distinguished co-founder of Matzpen, the socialist organisation which from the 60s to the 80s brought together Arab and Jewish opposition to the illegal occupation of Palestine.

Professor Machover has been found guilty – by the Head of Disputes Sam Mathews, with no due process whatsoever – “of involvement and support for both Labour Party Marxists and the Communist Party of Great Britain (through your participation in CPGB events and regular contributions to the CPGB’s newspaper)”.

Prof. Machover has never been a member of either organisation.
Prof Machover denies the accusations, but has not been given the opportunity to challenge the accusations.

This Branch/CLP notes that:

The Chakrabarti Report, found the Labour Party’s “complaints and disciplinary procedures . . . lacked sufficient transparency, uniformity and expertise” and “failed to observe the vital legal principles of due process (or natural justice) and proportionality”.

Members deserve to see these principles applied in all disciplinary cases, including that of Moshe Machover.

In addition, the Head of Disputes has accused Prof Machover of writing an “apparently antisemitic article” according to the new IHRA definition. This accusation is being held on file in the event that after 5 years Prof. Machover were to reapply for membership.

The article in question is a scholarly criticism of Zionism as a political ideology. Nowhere does it use the word zionist as an epithet for Jews, but Prof.Machover has been given no opportunity to respond.
This expulsion is a frightening precedent in a party which is working to be more democratic, accountable and to adopt procedures based on natural justice.

This Branch/CLP therefore calls for the Labour Party’s Head of Disputes immediately to rescind the expulsion of Professor Moshe Machover, a member of Hampstead and Kilburn CLP, so that due process can take place and Prof. Machover can be given the opportunity to challenge the allegations made against him.

The final version of Labour Party, Kilburn (Brent) branch’s resolution passed overwhelmingly, 5 October (I abstention, I against) in support of our friend & colleague Moshe Machover:
This Branch/CLP is outraged that:

·       Professor Emeritus Moshe Machover has been expelled from the Party. Prof Machover is Jewish and Israeli, the distinguished co-founder of Matzpen, the socialist organisation which from the 60s to the 80s brought together Arab and Jewish opposition to the illegal occupation of Palestine; 

·       the Head of Disputes has accused Prof Machover of writing an “apparently antisemitic article” according to the new IHRA definition, and further accused him of “membership or support for another political party, or a political organisation with incompatible aims to the Labour Party” on the basis of “participation in CPGB events and regular contributions to the CPGB’s newspaper, the Weekly Worker”.

This Branch/CLP notes that:
·       The Chakrabarti Inquiry found that the party’s “. . . complaints and disciplinary procedures . . . lacked sufficient transparency, uniformity and expertise . . .” and called for “the vital legal principles of due process (or natural justice) and proportionality”.

·       The IHRA definition is being monitored by Camden Council to ensure that it is not used to stifle free expression and criticism of Israeli policies.

·       Prof Machover who denies the accusations, has not been given the opportunity to challenge either the accusation of antisemitism nor his alleged support for another party or organisation with incompatible aims to the Labour Party.

·       This expulsion is a frightening precedent in a party which is working to be more democratic and called for, in the words of its leader Jeremy Corbyn, ‘support to end the oppression of the Palestinian people, the 50-year occupation and the illegal settlement expansion’.

This Branch/CLP therefore calls for:

·       Prof Machover’s expulsion to be immediately rescinded and for due process to take place so Prof Machover is given the opportunity to challenge the claims of the Head of Disputes.

Emergency Resolution Passed by the Bethnal Green Ward
Labour Party, 5 October 2017
Reinstate Moshe Machover

The Israeli socialist and long-time campaigner for Palestinian rights, Moshe Machover, has been expelled from the Labour Party for writing an article entitled “Anti Zionism does not equal anti-Semitism”.

We note with great concern:

The expulsion letter from the head of disputes, Sam Matthews, describes the article as “apparently antisemitic” and that it “appears to meet” the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance definition of antisemitism which has just been adopted by the Labour Party.

 The letter does not quote the definition but instead says: “Antisemitism in of any form – whether direct attacks or pejorative language which may cause offence to jewish people – is not acceptable and will not be tolerated in the Labour Party. Language that may be perceived as provocative, insensitive or offensive falls short of the standards expected of us as party members and has no place in the party.” It appears to be referencing the parts of the IHRA definition that were not adopted at the conference.

Moshe has been expelled, not suspended, without the right to defend himself, on the grounds that the publication concerned, Labour Party Marxist, is regarded as a front publication for another political organization, even though there are many examples of Labour members and politicians writing for comparable journals.

We believe:

This action is arbitrary, lacking in basic justice and is bringing the Labour Party into disrepute.

Therefore we resolve:
1.         We fully support Moshe Machover and call for his expulsion to be rescinded and for his immediate reinstatement as a member of the Labour Party.
2.         We reject any McCarthyite-style move to expel members for alleged “involvement and support for” other left groups on the basis of writing articles and attending and participating in meetings. It is common practice for Labour members of all levels to speak and participate in events of other groups, and have articles published, representing their individual viewpoints, in a range of publications.
3.         We call on the NEC to investigate the procedures followed to ensure that principles of natural justice are upheld.

On Thursday 5th September 2017 East Dulwich branch in Dulwich and West Norwood CLP passed the following resolution condemning the expulsion of Moshe Machover by 20 to 0 with one abstention.

This branch/CLP calls upon the Labour Party's Head of Disputes immediately to rescind the expulsion of Professor Moshe Machover, a member of Hampstead and Kilburn CLP, so that due process can take place and Prof. Machover can be given the opportunity to challenge the allegations made against him.

Branch motions and resolutions on the expulsion of Moshé Machover



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