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Wednesday, 11 April 2018

If Momentum expels me today they will be joining the false anti-Semitism campaign whose target is Corbyn

Momentum can either endorse McNicol’s racist witchhunt or declare zero tolerance of the false anti-Semitism campaign


Two weeks ago the two Jonathans - Arkush and Goldstein - of the Board of Deputies and Jewish Leadership Council, wrote an insulting and openly contemptuous letter to Jeremy Corbyn.  It was written in the wake of the latest fake anti-Semitism allegations concerning a long erased mural in the East End of London.  Arkush and Goldstein bleated that their concerns about ‘anti-Semitism’ weren’t being taken seriously:
We are told that our concerns are faked, and done at the command of Israel and/or Zionism (whatever that means); that anti-Semitism is merely "criticism of Israel"; that we call any and all criticism of Israel "anti-Semitic"
Arkush betrays his own agenda when he accuses Jewdas of 'antisemitism' and also his own racism when he accuses them of having non-Jews in their ranks
A few days later, as if to prove that their critics were right, Arkush laid into Jewdas, the Jewish group whose seder Jeremy Corbyn had attended, describing them as a ‘source of virulent anti-Semitism’.  Jewdas are not even an anti-Zionist group.  They do though have a long and consistent history of opposing racism and fascism, anti-Semitism included, as well as racism in Israel. Whatever other sins they can be accused of, anti-Semitism isn’t one of them.
Jonathan Arkus has no problem in speaking to Roberta Moore and her boyfriend who are both wearing tee shirts of the neo-Nazi Kahanist organisation Kach
Arkush demonstrated that even against Jewish opponents, Zionists don't hesitate to deploy the tried and trusted weapon of fake anti-Semitism.  They can't help themselves.  How else do you defend Israel's murderous regime and Zionist Apartheid other than by making false accusations of anti-semitism?  But if we mention this fact we are criticised for alleging Jewish 'conspiracies' and thus even calling them to account is antisemitic!
Arkush and Goldstein said this in their open letter berating Corbyn:

Again and again, Jeremy Corbyn has sided with anti-Semites rather than Jews. At best, this derives from the far left's obsessive hatred of Zionism, Zionists and Israel. At worst, it suggests a conspiratorial worldview in which mainstream Jewish communities are believed to be a hostile entity, a class enemy.

There is of course no evidence whatsoever to support this allegation which is merely a milder version of the ranting statement of Gideon Falter of the far-Right Campaign Against Anti-Semitism:

Under Jeremy Corbyn, the Labour Party has been seized by racists. Jeremy Corbyn is at home amongst them, having spent his political career seeking out and giving his backing to Holocaust deniers, genocidal antisemitic terrorist groups, wild antisemitic conspiracy theorists and a litany of Jew-haters.”

The Zionist movement, in the guise of the Jewish Labour Movement, have targeted Jewish anti-Zionists in the Labour Party in particular.  I have been expelled and Arkush has also demanded the expulsion of Jackie Walker and Ken Livingstone, describing Labour as having moved “with the speed of an arthritic snail.”. Arkush is not happy with the speed of the expulsion process! Previously the JLM targeted Professor Moshe Machover, who was auto-excluded and then readmitted and Glyn Secker of Jewish Voice for Labour, who was suspended and unsuspended within a week and before that Charlie Allen.  At Labour Party conference they also suggested that Naomi Wimborne-Iddrissi should be suspended.

Jewish opponents of Zionism and supporters of the Palestinians will always be the target of the Zionists' false allegations of anti-semitism for the simple reason that we are living proof that their claim to represent all Jews is a lie, an anti-Semitic lie, because it presumes that Jews form one homogenous political bloc.  The irony of course is that it is the Zionists who are closest ideologically to the anti-semites.  It is not for nothing that every fascist and anti-semitic party in Europe - from Le Pen to Geert Wilders to Heinz Strache and Hungary's newly elected Prime Minister Viktor Orban - loves Israel.  In this country the EDL march with the Israeli flag.
Republican president-elect Donald Trump delivers his acceptance speech during his election night event at the New York Hilton Midtown in the early morning hours of November 9, 2016 in New York City. (Spencer Platt/Getty Images/AFP)
Republican president-elect Donald Trump delivers his acceptance speech during his election night event at the New York Hilton Midtown in the early morning hours of November 9, 2016 in New York City. (Spencer Platt/Getty Images/AFP)
In the United States the alt-Right is single-minded in their devotion to Israel even whilst they have nothing but contempt for Jews who are seen as quintissential liberals.  Richard Spencer, neo-Nazi founder of the alt-Right describes himself as a White Zionist! 

Steve Bannon, co-founder of Breitbart News and Trump's former Strategic Advisor, according to NBC News, asked a school director “why there were so many Hanukkah books in the library.” At another school, his ex-wife said, Bannon “asked me if it bothered me that the school used to be in a temple. I said no and asked why he asked … he did not respond.”

At a third school, the Archer School for Girls, Bannon “went on to say the biggest problem he had with Archer is the number of Jews that attend. He said that he doesn’t like Jews and that he doesn’t like the way they raise their kids to be ‘whiny brats’ and that he didn’t want the girls going to school with Jews.”

None of this stopped the Zionist Organisation of America from making Bannon an honoured guest and speaker at its 2017 Annual Gala Dinner.  For good measure they also invited another Trump appointee, Sebastian Gorka who, according to the Jewish Forward is a member of a Hungarian far-right group that is listed by the U.S. State Department as having been “under the direction of the Nazi Government of Germany” during World War II. The elite order is known as the Vitézi Rend.

Instead of standing up a campaign whose sole purpose is the removal of Corbyn, Momentum’s National Co-ordinating Group took the cowards way out last week with a statement which:

‘acknowledges the anger, upset and despair within the British Jewish community at the numerous cases of antisemitism in the Labour Party... Momentum’s NCG believes that accusations of antisemitism should not and cannot be dismissed simply as right wing smears nor as the result of conspiracies’.

This absurd statement concedes everything and understands nothing.  There have been no ‘numerous cases of anti-Semitism’.  Anti-Semitism in the Labour Party today is less today than ever, completely minimal.  Where anti-Semitism exists it is almost always clumsy verbal comments which betray a confusion in respect to Israel not Jews. Unsurprisingly, when Jewish leaders defend Israel’s murderous behaviour in the name of all Jews and when Israel calls itself a Jewish state some people will take them at their word and blame what has happened on Jews.  This is light years away from the biological, lethal racial anti-Semitism of the Nazi era or even the Catholic anti-Semitism that persists till this day in countries of Eastern Europe like Poland.

Clumsy or anti-Semitic comments on Twitter are not evidence of a rise of anti-Semitism.  Anyone can post on Facebook and magnify their own importance. No one who is Jewish suffers from such idiocy.  No one has died from a tweet or a Facebook post.  It is Black people who die at the hands of the Police.  It is Asian and Muslim people whose mosques are firebombed and who themselves are attacked by racists.  Jewish people in this society are White and privileged.  They are not the victims of racial oppression which is why the Zionist movement resorts to false accusations of ‘anti-Semitism’ against their opponents.  There isn't a single Palestine solidarity activist who hasn’t been accused of anti-Semitism.

All this is identity politics gone mad.  A product of the belief that any group, however preposterous their claims, can say they are oppressed.  It may be a heresy but Jews are not oppressed as Jews in Britain today.  They may feel different in some ways, such as in their identification with Israel for example, but oppressed they are not.  That is why they have no right to expect others to treat them as if they are oppressed because in claiming oppression they are countering their demands to groups who actually are oppressed.

The idea that Jewish people or the Jewish community are in ‘despair’ at Labour Party anti-Semitism is a media creation that Momentum, under Jon Lansman, himself a Zionist, has adopted.  The fact that the Jewish Labour Movement joined in the attacks on Corbyn for having spent a Passover seder with Jewdas speaks volumes.  The JLM represents the Israeli state inside the Labour Party.  There is nothing radical about this group, which is why they voted 92%-4% for Owen Smith in 2016.

What Momentum needs to appreciate above all is that the real target of the fabricated anti-Semitism campaign is not Jackie Walker, Ken Livingstone, Glynn Secker, Moshe Machover or me but Corbyn.  He is the prize.  We are collateral damage.  

The beauty of the fake 'anti-semitism' campaign from the point of view of the Zionists is that it has no ending, it cannot end.  It is designed to run and run.   There will always be some tweet or Facebook post that can be dredged up as 'proof' of Corbyn's 'antisemitism'.  There will always be some hapless fool who, lacking any other explanation, will describe Israel's behaviour and the support given her by the USA as being on account of the mythical 'Rothschilds'.  Whatever Corbyn does to appease monsters such as the far-Right Arkush (who is indeed a political monster) it will never be enough.  The anti-semitism crisis, engineered in the Embassies of the United States and Israel, is guaranteed to run and run.  

It is no accident that the antisemitism crisis came about during Corbyn's first leadership campaign.  If and when he is overthrown or defeated this campaign will suddenly vanish like the mist on a summer's morning.  It is made in Langley in the USA.
Avi Gabbay - right-wing leader of the nationalist Israeli Labour Party
Today it was announced that the leader of the racist Israeli Labour Party, Avi Gabbay, is personally cutting relations with Jeremy Corbyn.
The Israeli Labour Party under Gabbay, who was previously a Minister in Netanyahu's cabinet, has supported Israel’s attempt to deport 40,000 Black African refugees.  The Israeli Labour Party opposes the dismantlement of settlements in the West Bank and opposes any government coalition with the Joint List which represents the Arab parties (whereas he is open to a coalition with the far-Right Yisrael Beteinu party of Avigdor Lieberman).  As Israel’s 972 Magazine noted

Gabbay’s new direction for the party became more than just a change in rhetoric this week, when he ordered the party to support a bill that will allow the deportation and indefinite detention of asylum seekers living in Israel... it could have real consequences: the deportation of tens of thousands of people who have lived in Israel for years, putting many of their lives at risk.


Momentum should instead bite the bullet and argue that the position of the British wing of the Israeli Labour Party as an affiliated socialist society is untenable and needs to end.  It is as if we would have tolerated a pro-Apartheid Afrikaner Party affiliated to the Labour Party. The fact that this situation began in 1921 at the height of Labour's support for the Empire is an additional reason to cut our links with the Israeli Labour Party.  Nearly a century of attachment to a racist organisation is already far too long.  If there is a need for a Jewish section of the Labour Party, which I doubt, then it should be open to all Jewish members of the Labour Party not, as is presently the case, only Zionist Jews (& non-Jews).  It should be Jewish Voice for Labour that replaces the JLM.

If Momentum later today decides to expel me, which is highly likely, they will not only be acting as the transmission belt for McNicol’s racist witchhunt but they will be giving succour to a campaign whose real target is the person that Momentum was set up to support, Jeremy Corbyn. 

Below is the submission I made to the Panel from Momentum's National Coordinating Group which will make the decision

Voting to Expel Me from Momentum will be a Vote to Endorse the Contrived and Fabricated Anti-Semitism Campaign Against Corbyn

Introduction
I am preparing this submission on the basis that the panel of the National Coordinating Group which has been appointed to hear my appeal has not already made their mind up before walking into the room.  It will be for them to convince me and others of this fact since the Chair of the NCG, Jon Lansman, has already made his views clear in an email of 19th March to Laura Parker:

‘We do have to get rid of Greenstein but I am a bit concerned by the process...’

Neither Mr Lansman nor Ms Parker saw fit to send this email to me.

The NCG is not known for its independence of Lansman’s wishes. Lansman wants me removed from Momentum, because I have been expelled from the Labour Party, a consequence of having been a victim of the witchhunt. The real reason is my criticism of him.  It will be interesting to see whether a panel of the NCG is prepared to disagree with Lansman.

My appeal is against being ‘deemed to have resigned’ from Momentum, under rule 5.8 of the Constitution.  Rule 5.8 as members know states that someone who ceases to be a member of the Labour Party may be deemed to have resigned.  In other words the process is one of discretion.  Momentum should refuse to affirm Iain McNicol’ contempt for such niceties as natural justice and due process and support my campaign for reinstatement in the Labour Party. To do otherwise would be to endorse McNicol’s reign of terror and error.

The nearest comparison to my situation is the decision of the Law Society in the case of Sally Clark.  Members may (or probably won’t) remember the case of Sally Clark, the solicitor who was gaoled in November 1999 for life for murdering her two infant children who in fact died from Cot Death syndrome.  The Law Society, which normally strikes off a solicitor convicted of a serious criminal offence, uniquely refused to strike her off as they were of the belief that she was innocent.  Sally was freed by the Court of Appeal in 2003.
These two articles were the first information I received as to the allegations against me - leaked to the not normally Labour supporting press
I am also the victim of a miscarriage of justice.  It was perpetrated above all by McNicol and the machine he operated under John Stolliday and Sam Matthews.  It was implemented by Labour’s equivalent of the Star Chamber, the National Kangaroo Committee otherwise known as the NCC.  The NCC is a body that deliberately ignores, by virtue of its own Guidelines (which aren’t in fact part of the Labour Party’s Constitution) all malpractice and breaches of natural justice and fairness that take place before the hearing itself. 

Appendix 6 s.6(D)(i) of the Labour Party Rules stipulates that:

‘The procedures adopted on behalf of the Party or a CLP in advance of a referral to the NCC are not matters for the NCC dealing with a particular case. The NCC is entitled to (and will) act on the basis that the charges are properly brought before them and cannot become embroiled in dealing with complaints about the administration of any investigation leading to the charges. Any such complaint will therefore not be entertained by the NCC or panel thereof unless it is material or relevant to the consideration of the evidence to be used by the presenter in support of the charges.

This is a ‘turning a blind eye’ clause of the Labour Party rules.  It deliberately ignores any breaches of procedure or injustices happening before the NCC takes charge of the matter.  It doesn’t matter how badly a person is treated the NCC is completely indifferent.  We have had one suicide, many reports of depression and trauma caused by  the behaviour of Labour’s apparatchiks yet the NCC deliberately refuses to even look at how people are treated.  
Both the Times and Telegraph withdrew their imputation that I was antisemitic
In my case I was suspended on 18th March 2016 for remarks I was ‘alleged to have made’.  Despite repeatedly emailing John Stolliday I received no response to my request for information regarding my alleged remarks.  On April 2nd both The Telegraph and The Times printed stories detailing the allegations, all of which referred to the then building hysteria over anti-Semitism in the Labour Party.
Both newspapers, under legal threat of a libel action, made retractions and printed letters from me making it clear that they were not alleging that I was anti-Semitic.  The Telegraph made it clear that this information came directly from the Compliance Unit.  This outrageous breach of the Data Protection Act 1998 should have been enough for these charges to be thrown out.  Instead I was subject to an Investigation Hearing on May 31st 2016 and then for the following 18 months nothing happened.  On November 2nd whilst recovering from surgery in Kings College Hospital, I received notice of a hearing on December 11th.

Despite emailing back requesting extra time the NCC refused to grant me an adjournment.  On December 7th I applied to the High Court and obtained an Injunction forcing McNicol to postpone the hearing.  This duly took place on February 18th 2018 when I was expelled.

Paragraph 102 of the Skeleton Argument of the barrister for the Labour Party, Thomas Ogg, freely conceded that: ‘All of the charges relate to conduct after Mr Greenstein's suspension from the Labour Party on 18 March 2016.’  In other words I was suspended first and then McNicol’s minions set about gathering evidence. 
South African anti-apartheid activists have no problem in recognising Israel's Apartheid system
Why was I targeted?  Because I am a prominent Jewish anti-Zionist.  Nothing more and nothing less.  Targeted by the Jewish Labour Movement, the British branch of the Israeli Labour Party.  A racist party of ethnic cleansing and segregation.  A racist party that has supported these past months Netanyahu’s attempts to deport 40,000 Black Africa refugees for the crime of being Black and non-Jewish.  This is the real racism that should merit the attention of members of Momentum not the phantom of ‘anti-Semitism’.

No court of law would uphold this procedure, which amounts to the equivalent of preventative detention.  Unfortunately until Chakrabarti’s proposals on disciplinary processes are implemented then this situation will recur.  However Momentum, since it stands for a New Politics, if that isn’t just another bit of spin, should register its objection to this process by refusing to expel me (which is what ‘deemed to have resigned’ means.

Background – the False Anti-Semitism Campaign

For the past two years there has been an unremitting campaign against ‘anti-Semitism’ in the Labour Party.  It began even before Corbyn became leader when the Conservative and Zionist press became alarmed that someone who had always identified with the Palestinian cause was about to be elected leader of the Labour Party. It has continued up to this day. Jackie Walker, Ken Livingstone, Marc Wadsworth and myself have been collateral damage. The real target is Jeremy Corbyn. 

The false anti-Semitism campaign began with headlines in the Daily Mail[1] and the Jewish Chronicle[2] concerning Corbyn’s alleged links with a holocaust denier. The campaign then proceeded via Gerald Kaufman’s comments about Jewish money (just last week the Observer was telling us ‘Major Jewish private donor ditches Labour over antisemitism’.[3] without any fuss at all.)  The campaign continued via the manufactured affair of Oxford University Labour Club and the allegations, which were not upheld, that Jewish students were subject to racial abuse.  Those who levelled the allegations did so because the Labour club had voted to support Israel Apartheid Week.  Soon after they left the Labour Party altogether for the Lib-Dems.  This was documented by investigative journalist Asa Winstanley How Israel lobby manufactured UK Labour Party’s anti-Semitism crisis.[4]
We have had, over the last month alone, a dodgy dossier of David Collier,[5] much of which is forged, about Corbyn’s membership of the Palestine Live Facebook page.  The Zionist ‘charity’ Campaign Against Anti-Semitism has also made a second complaint of anti-Semitism against Corbyn and they are calling a demonstration against Corbyn’s anti-Semitism on April 8th. It hardly needs repeating that the false anti-Semitism smear campaign has nothing to do with anti-Semitism and everything to do with removing Jeremy Corbyn. 

Throughout this period Labour Party members have remained immune to this nonsense and the latest poll suggests that 77% don’t believe that Labour is riddled with anti-Semitism.[6] It is a campaign got up in the mainstream media that bears no relationship to reality. 
What is indisputable is the antisemitic nature of the cartoon by Netanyahu's son, Yair, whose attack on George Soros (above) was praised by ex-KKK Grand Wizard David Duke and the neo-Nazi editor of the Daily Stormer, Andrew Anglin
In response to the removal of McNicol coupled with the appointment of Christine Shawcroft as Chair of the Disputes Committee, this campaign restarted.  We have seen the wholly synthetic attack around a mural that has been erased for 6 years.  Corbyn apologised for his earlier opposition to its destruction but I don’t even believe that this was necessary because, like many works of art, it was open to differing interpretations. I personally don’t believe it was anti-Semitic, friends of mine disagree with me.  People can disagree in good faith.  However the attacks on Jeremy were not motivated by concern over anti-Semitism but were a cynical attack begun by Blairite MP Luciana Berger. 

We can see this cynicism at work over the affair of the Passover seder that Jeremy attended with the Jewish group Jewdas. Jonathan Arkush, the right-wing Tory who heads the Board of Deputies described Jewdas as “source of virulent antisemitism”.[7] 

It is extremely regrettable that Momentum, instead of standing up to this campaign and challenging the idea that anti-Semitism is widespread in the Labour Party, goes along with this narrative.[8]  Momentum’s statement said that ‘Momentum’s NCG believes that accusations of antisemitism should not and cannot be dismissed simply as right wing smears nor as the result of conspiracies.’  Unfortunately this flippant dismissal of what has happened fails to ask even basic questions as to where this campaign has come from.  The Al Jazeera programme The Lobby[9] demonstrated that people from the Israeli Embassy and its lobby groups in the Labour Party – the Jewish Labour Movement and Labour Friends of Israel – do nothing but conspire and plot to demonise their opponents.  I distinguish here between conspiracies and conspiracy theories, which are altogether different.

In his long interview on the Today  Program of 3 April Jon Lansman was incapable of criticising the behaviour of MPs like Angela Smith and John Woodcock over the Jewdas affair. Smith, who couldn’t even spell ‘Seder’ correctly, stated it showed “a blatant dismissal” of the need to tackle antisemitism.’ [10] Lansman really doesn’t see anything amiss in a false campaign that has been waged for two years.  That is why he was instrumental in the removal of Jackie Walker as Vice-Chair of Momentum, someone whom I described, even before she was suspended, as the victim of a political lynching.[11]

When Nick Robinson asked Lansman about why Labour MPs were being threatened with deselection for going to an ‘anti-racist’ rally outside Parliament, the obvious answer was that they weren’t.  Yet Lansman didn’t demur. The rally was a rally of racists.  The main chant was ‘Jeremy Corbyn is a racist.’  Jewish people like myself who assembled with Jewish Voice for Labour were harried with accusations of ‘traitor’ (an anti-Semitic term of abuse which implies that our loyalty should be to Israel). What kind of ‘anti-racist’ rally is it that includes Ian Paisley MP and his DUP colleagues, Norman Tebbit, Sir Eric Pickles and mainly Jewish and non-Jewish Tories and Zionists?  Plus of course 39 right-wing Labour MPs.  The chap on the front of the Guardian picture is an overt fascist.[12]  Perhaps if Momentum had had the courage to do what it did 2 years ago, in response to the chicken coup, then we would have seen a genuine and large anti-racist demonstration.

Have members of Momentum’s NCG ever asked themselves why papers such as the Daily Mail are so supportive of the false anti-Semitism campaign?  A paper which Michael Foot called the ‘forgers’ Gazett’ on account of the Zinoviev letter.  A paper which supported Hitler prior to 1939, the British Union of Fascists, which opposed Jewish refugees coming into this country and which till this very day harbours anti-Semitic prejudies (e.g. Ed Miliband and the bacon sandwich controversy).  Yet these papers are always happy to shout ‘anti-Semitism’ when anti-Zionism and Israel is on the agenda.  It is one of those ironies that no one seems to mention that the vilest racist tabloids, which employed people like Katy Hopkins, Rod Liddle, Richard Littlejohn et al. have no hesitation in demonstrating faux outrage over ‘anti-Semitism’. 

In the course of this campaign, I too was suspended.  I was a victim of a campaign that had nothing to do with anti-Semitism and everything to do with Zionism and support for the State of Israel.  It is deeply to be regretted that instead of Momentum calling this campaign out for the bogus and false affair that it is, they have succumbed to the political pressure

Jon Lansman has effectively justified the Nakba, the expulsion of the Palestinian refugees in 1947-8 in Labour and the Jews: from ethnic cleansing to truth and reconciliation[13] and justified Zionism, the ideology of Jewish racial supremacy and segregation in Why the Left must stop talking about ‘Zionism’[14] by painting it as an anodyne form of identity politics.

Momentum, because it is not a democratic organisation and because there are no forums where these matters can be debated, has stumbled blindly during this whole period.  For two weeks following the Mural campaign it said nothing, even as Christine Shawcroft was forced off the NEC at the urging of 39 right-wing Labour MPs.  A resignation that should not have occurred.  Former MP and Junior Minister Chris Mullins summed up what was happening:
“Alleged anti-semitism yet another stick with which to beat Corbyn -- along with Corbyn 'friend of the IRA, Hizbollah, Hamas, Czech spy, Soviet spy....' You name it. Whatever next?... I am not a Corbynista, but I can see what's going on here. Sorry to see that some of my Labour colleagues have fallen for it. Anyone in doubt should read this morning's Tory press. https://twitter.com/PolhomeEditor/statu ... 0032508929 …’ [15]
  
What is remarkable is that despite all the heat generated by the anti-Semitism furore, so few incidents of actual anti-Semitism have been documented.  Many of those which were documented were falsified.  People may remember Vicky Kirby who tweeted that Jews had big noses.  An obvious case you might think of an anti-Semitic caricature. However Asa Winstanley dug a little deeper and found that she had in fact tweeted the lines to a play by David Baddiel, a Jewish playwright.  Guido Fawkes had photo shopped this out. 
Even the Guardian's Jonathan Freedland and a representative of the Board of Deputies accepts I am not antisemitic
I have fought anti-Semitism and fascism all my life. I was responsible in 2012 for the expulsion of a holocaust denier from the Brighton branch of PSC and then nationally. I have no tolerance of Holocaust denial where it occurs but it is very rare. What motivates it these days is not simply neo-Nazism, as once was the case, but the weaponisation of the Holocaust by the Zionist movement and Israel.  And before members of the panel fall off their chairs let me explain. Israel has consistently mobilised the Holocaust in support of its policies of ethnic cleansing and mass murder.  For example Shimon Peres called the Green Line between Israel and the West Bank ‘Auschwitz borders’.[16] As Professor Edith Zertal of the Hebrew University in Jerusalem and visiting professor at Chicago University wrote, there hasn’t been a war involving Israel ‘that has not been perceived, defined, and conceptualized in terms of the Holocaust.’ Israel has mobilised the Holocaust ‘in the service of Israeli politics.’ [17]

I reject out of hand the idea that racism can best be combated via education and what used to be called racism awareness training (RAT).  As the late Black anti-racist activist and writer Amalavaner Sivanandan said, RAT makes the Police more aware of who their enemy is.[18]  It appears that Momentum is infested with the very racism it purports to oppose if it really believes that racism, rooted in the very pores of capitalism, can be eradicated through education.  Racism is something we fight in our practice and day to day activity.  Racism is something we inherited with colonialism and imperialism.  It is as English as apple pie.  When anti-Semitism is wielded as a weapon on behalf of the world’s only Apartheid State then the idea that the racists who justify that state, the Jewish Labour Movement, should be in charge of that training is nothing less than sick.  To those who doubt Israel is an Apartheid society I suggest they read for example Jonathan Cook’s Why Israel is an apartheid state.[19]

My Expulsion from the Labour Party

On 18th February I was expelled from the Labour Party as a result of the false anti-Semitism campaign. A campaign of destabilisation which in my opinion could only have been inaugurated by a combination of the Israeli and American embassies in conjunction with our own intelligence services. The CIA has few other functions other than destabilising governments and political movements hostile to US interests. The election of a leader of the second main party of government in the US’s closest ally in Europe, who was anti-NATO and opposed to US intervention globally, could not have escaped their attention.  The idea that with the election of Jeremy Corbyn an anti-Semitism plague broke out in Labour is too silly for words.

Contrary to received opinion I was not expelled for being an anti-Semite.  That is hardly surprising since I have spent much of the past 40 years as an anti-fascist and anti-racist activist.  I am the author of the only book detailing the history of the anti-fascist struggle in Brighton and on the South Coast.[20]  In paras. 2&3 of his Skeleton argument Thomas Ogg argued that:

The fact that Mr Greenstein considers the word (‘zio’) not to be a racial slur is no defence because he knows the word is considered offensive and he accepts he uses the word pejoratively....
The NEC's case is that Greenstein's use of the term "Zio" is antisemitic, but the NEC does not otherwise allege that Mr Greenstein's conduct was antisemitic.’ 

This was the core and the kernel of the NEC’s case against me.  All else was decoration and froth.  ‘Zio’ may be both offensive and perjorative but that does not make it anti-Semitic.  We used to chant ‘Nazi scum off our streets’ that is hardly complimentary and it was certainly offensive but it wasn’t racist.  I do not accept that ‘zio’ is racist.  Certainly it is perjorative, as it should be. But it isn’t anti-Semitic for the following reasons:

 ‘Zio’, which is not a word I use outside social media, is short for Zionist. It is no different from similar shorthand – Commie, Trot, Tory, Fash.  If anyone is saying that it is an abusive term for ‘Jew’ then what they are really saying is that the term Zionist and Jew are interchangeable.  That is a position of anti-Semites and fascists and also of course Zionists.  It is an anti-Semitic statement in itself and is also wrong.  Historically most Jews were opposed to Zionism.  The biggest supporters of Zionism were anti-Semites for whom Zionism was a means of getting rid of the Jews in their midst.

As Isaac Deutscher wrote of the Jewish workers in Poland:
‘‘to the Jewish workers anti-Semitism seemed to triumph in Zionism, which recognised the legitimacy and the validity of the old cry ‘Jews get out!' The Zionists were agreeing to get out.’[i]

According to Ellman these are Palestinian terrorists

Amongst my other ‘crimes’ was ‘abusing’ Progress and Labour Friends of Israel member Louise Ellman MP who, in the name of security supports Israel’s shackling, beating and incarceration of (Palestinian) children.  (see Parliamentary debate on Palestinian child prisoners and detainees, 6.1.16.).  My abuse consisted of accusing her of supporting Israeli abuse of Palestinian children.  The proponents of the false anti-Semitism smears will assure you that their campaign has nothing, absolutely nothing to do with Israel or Zionism. Indeed those who suggest it is are guilty of believing in conspiracy theories, which are themselves a form of anti-Semitism!
It is anti-Zionist Jews who receive the most abuse
 
The Timeline of My Dealings with Momentum Nationally
On 18th March I e-mailed Momentum nationally asking why they had ceased taking my subscriptions and assuming that they had done so because I had been expelled.

On 22nd March a Santiago Bell-Bradford emailed informing me that I was wrong and the fault lay with Pay Pal. I was happy to accept this and I said I would contact Pay Pal directly.

17 minutes later another email arrived, from Momentum Info, informing me that it had come to their attention (in fact I pointed it out) that I had been expelled from the Labour Party and I had 6 days to make written representations to Momentum as to why they also should not expel me.  I was told that a panel of the National Co-ordinating Group or a panel thereof would meet to determine my fate.

I wrote back almost immediately complaining that an email such as this should have a name attached to it and attacking their impersonal corporate culture. In my naivety I treated this email at face value.  I didn’t expect that it was the product of dirty tricks. I simply pointed out that there seemed to be an omission in their letter, viz. that I had a right to be heard in person.

I said that child care responsibilities prevented me from attending on Thursday March 29th and I suggested alternative dates. I also stated that ‘Your email gives the distinct impression that this is merely a matter of going through the motions.’ I also pointed out that the constitution merely stated that Imay be deemed to have resigned.’  At this stage I was still assuming that the email was sent in good faith.

What changed this was a phone call I received about 15 minutes later from Laura Parker. Laura phoned to ‘explain’ why names are never used on emails because of the abuse staff get from Momentum members! This was wholly untrue since I had just received an email in the name of Santiago Bell Bradford. When I tried to discuss the substance of the email I had sent she put the phone down.  It was almost as if she was phoning me up to distract me.

I responded to this email rejecting her explanation and making the point that ‘If what you are saying is that large numbers of Momentum members are abusive then you might ask yourself whether it has anything to do with the way you treat people.’

I also received an anonymous email with copies of internal Momentum emails which put everything into context.  The first email was at 00.34 on the morning of Monday 19th March.  Lansman wrote, in his capacity of Chair of the NCG that:

‘We do have to get rid of Greenstein but I am a bit concerned by the process which he will make a big deal out of possibly including lawyers - sorry if I didn’t say this earlier.The bits of the constitution which are relevant here are....

One of the ironies of my suspension was that genuine neo-Nazis like Britain First's Paul Besser could use it to suggest that I was anti-Semitic whereas his own support for Zionism made him kosher
What Lansman was saying was that Momentum may deem me to have resigned but they have to go through the motions of having a hearing.  It wasn’t even conceded that I had a right to be heard in person.  Presumably this is the new, kinder politics which Momentum enjoins! 
Lansman couldn’t have been clearer. There was nothing about due process and the right to a fair hearing. I had the right to be heard but ‘not necessary (sic) in person.’ Quite how Lansman can square having a right to be heard with me not being present in person is something I haven’t yet got my head around. 

I followed this up with a further email to Lansman stating that if he wishes to engage in these tricks and deceptions then I shall be forced to treat him as I did the Labour Party and apply for an injunction. 

If this is how Lansman behaves to me, with a complete lack of openness and honesty, how does he treat others? What conception of socialism does Lansman adhere to that causes him to play these deceitful games? Is the expectation that staff members will lie an implied part of their contracts because Laura Parker didn’t inform me of this exchange of correspondence.

Conclusion

Momentum has a Constitution, which was imposed by Lansman over a year ago.  It has never been approved, still less debated by Momentum’s membership.  The relevant part of the Constitution dealing with members who have been expelled are the following:

5.8     Any member who does not join the Labour Party by 1 July 2017, or ceases to be a member of the Labour Party, or acts inconsistently with Labour Party membership, may be deemed to have resigned.
5.10   Where a member may be deemed to have resigned in accordance with Rules 5.7, 5.8 or 5.9 there will be a right to be heard by the NCG or a delegated panel before a final decision is made.

It is quite clear that it is within the discretion of the panel to accept my continuing membership of Momentum.  Momentum should be supporting me in my efforts to be readmitted to Labour now that McNicol has departed.  It should not be supporting the outrageous procedures which were used in my case.

It should indeed be a rare event when someone who is Jewish is expelled as part of the anti-Semitism witch-hunt.  Jonathan Arkush of the Board of Deputies welcomed my expulsion.  He has called for the expulsion of another Jew, Jackie Walker.  Arkush is someone who welcomed Donald Trump to power and the anti-Semitic retinue of people like Steve Bannon and the neo-Nazi Sebastian Gorka. 
Arkush is also a supporter of Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel’s far-Right racist Prime Minister. Surely it doesn’t take too much to join the dots and see why the Board of Deputies sees the expulsion of anti-Zionist Jews as being part of the fight against ‘anti-Semitism’.  Arkush is open about the fact that his concern is not with anti-Semitism but anti-Zionism.  If there is any remaining doubt then you only need to read his open letter to Jeremy Corbyn which states:

Again and again, Jeremy Corbyn has sided with anti-Semites rather than Jews. At best, this derives from the far left's obsessive hatred of Zionism, Zionists and Israel. At worst, it suggests a conspiratorial worldview in which mainstream Jewish communities are believed to be a hostile entity, a class enemy.[21]

It is crystal clear what the real concerns of the Zionist leaders are.  It is Israel and Zionism.  That is no basis for my exclusion from Momentum.

Tony Greenstein




[1]           EXCLUSIVE: Jeremy Corbyn's 'long-standing links' with notorious Holocaust denier and his 'anti-Semitic' organisation revealed, https://tinyurl.com/pzr5wpd , Notorious conspiracy theorist who believes the 'world is controlled by Jewish elders' spoke at Westminster event hosted by Jeremy Corbyn, https://tinyurl.com/ybvblvusl
[2]           Revealed: Jeremy Corbyn attended event hosted by Holocaust denier's group in 2013.https://tinyurl.com/y8v2a862
[3]           https://tinyurl.com/y99zvnx9
[4]           https://tinyurl.com/gt7cgxd

[6]           Labour Members Think Anti-Semitism Claims Are Being Exaggerated To Damage Jeremy Corbyn, Huffington Post 31.3.18.

[7]        Jonathan Arkush claims Jewdas is ‘a source of virulent antisemitism’ https://www.thejc.com/news/uk-news/jonathan-arkush-claims-jewdas-is-a-source-of-virulent-antisemitism-1.461817

[10]          Corbyn was right to attend the Jewdas Seder, there's no such thing as 'good' and 'bad' Jews  Independent 3 April 2018,  https://tinyurl.com/y7rol7ve 

[11]          The Jewish Labour Movement and its Political Lynching of Jackie Walker, 17.9.16.  http://azvsas.blogspot.co.uk/2016/09/the-jewish-labour-movement-and-its.html

[12]          Labour antisemitism more widespread than thought, Momentum says, https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2018/apr/02/labour-antisemitism-more-widespread-than-thought-momentum-says, Guardian  April 2nd 



[16]          Auschwitz Borders Are Here, https://www.haaretz.com/1.5148580

[17]          Zertal, pp.4, 91.  Israel’s Holocaust and the Politics of Nationhood, Cambridge University Press, 2011.

[18]          We Are Here Because You Were With Us: Remembering A. Sivanandan (1923–2018), https://ceasefiremagazine.co.uk/us-remembering-a-sivanandan-1923-2018/


[20]          Review, Fighting Fascism The Argus, 28.5.2012. http://www.theargus.co.uk/magazine/nostalgia/pastpresent/9728304.Fighting_fascism/



[i]            Isaac Deutscher, 'The Non Jewish Jew ' & Other Essays-The Russian  Revolution and the Jewish Question' pp.66/7.

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