Acclaimed American academic Professor Deborah Lipstadt has slammed British Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn for presenting himself as a life-long anti-racist campaigner, despite his extensive associations with Holocaust deniers and other extremists, The Jewish Chronicle reported Tuesday.
“No respectable politician would associate with anyone who used the ‘n’ word. The same should apply to Corbyn over antisemitism,” she said.
Professor Lipstadt, who famously battled Holocaust denier David Irving in court for deliberately manipulating history “for his own ideological reasons,” made the comments ahead of the publication of her new book, Anti-Semitism Here And Now, to mark International Holocaust Memorial Day on Sunday.
“His view is ‘I’m a progressive so I can’t be antisemitic’,” she said. “He boasts how his mother was at the Cable Street demonstration — ‘I had progressive mother’s milk so you can’t call me antisemitic.’”
In 1936, Jews and their neighbors stood side-by-side in London’s East End, defying the British Union of Fascists (BUF) led by Nazi sympathizer Oswald Mosley as they made plans to march through their neighborhood, in what became known as the Battle of Cable Street.
In her new book, Professor Lipstadt devotes several pages to Corbyn’s controversial record of associating with enemies of the Jewish people.
“Let’s call it the Corbyn Syndrome — a syndrome in which Jews, for the most part white, privileged members of the elite, cannot possibly be considered victims,” she says in the book.
Lipstadt asks: “Has he facilitated and amplified expressions of anti-Semitism? Has he been consistently reluctant to acknowledge expressions of anti-Semitism unless they come from white supremacists and neo-Nazis? Will his actions facilitate the institutionalisation of anti-Semitism among other progressives?
Sadly, my answer to all of these is an unequivocal yes.”
On Monday, Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis said he is “still waiting” to see the issue of anti-Semitism taken seriously by the Labour Party. He added: “We’re still waiting to see, and the longer we wait, the more concerned we get….All we are asking for – all that our society is asking for – is zero tolerance on antisemitism, and that’s what we expect to see.”
During Prime Minister’s Questions Time in parliament on Wednesday, Theresa May attacked Corbyn for his refusal to meet with her over Brexit, asking the Labour leader why he sat with members of terror groups Hamas, Hezbollah and the Irish Republican Army, but not with her.
“He has been willing to sit down with Hamas, Hezbollah and the IRA without preconditions but he will not meet with me to talk about Brexit,” the Prime Minister said.
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