What proportion of the accusations of antisemitism they've had lately come from the Blairite old guard & directed almost exclusively at Corbyn's crew?

Is there any evidence that these accusations motivated by other agendas rather than honest concerns about antisemitism within the party?

I'm wondering if the statistics of where the allegations have originated & at who they have been directed would give any information regarding the credibility of the accusations?

To be clear: I'm not asking for opinion or discussion, what I am asking is "are there any reputable reports I can look at that could give me an analysis or breakdown of where the accusations have originated & what subdivisions within the party have received what portions of them"

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    The way the question is currently phrased is almost inviting someone to corroborate your take on the situation by causation. I'd love to see a revision that doesn't try to derive political goals or motivation from just the actors. I would be interested in knowing the context of the accusations; what exactly was said? Links to what you're referring to would help as well. Feb 27, 2019 at 20:19
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    bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-47203397 while I am conflicted about the quality of this question, the linked report from the BBC could explain why there is confusion. The key numbers in the report indicated 673 anti-semitic reports have been made, and a single individual claims to have made 200 reports. No attempt is made to reconcile these numbers, which leads to understandable confusion.
    – Jontia
    Feb 27, 2019 at 20:21
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    No, I mean seeing the trend in the 673 cases, most of which were either dropped or resulted in (private) warnings
    – Caleth
    Feb 27, 2019 at 20:34
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    I'm not sure this is an answerable question. You might be able to find out the leanings of those who have been suspended or expelled, but it's unlikely to get info on who hasn't, and why they weren't
    – Caleth
    Feb 27, 2019 at 20:39
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    @richardb "given that some of the ex-Labour MPs are actually Jewish, framing the accusations as largely malicious is treading close to blaming Jews for antisemitism" ~ I don't accept that considering the possibility some individuals might be making false or exaggerated claims automatically predisposes the questioner to racism against that individuals entire ethnic group ~ I certainly won't be bound in my thinking by fear of that accusation ~ if everyone was then more individuals would get away with things like this.
    – Pelinore
    Feb 27, 2019 at 23:15

2 Answers 2


Jeremy Corbyn is a controversial party leader. Everyone probably remembers David Cameron's "For heaven's sake man, go!" from 2016 during the Labour party turmoil. While he has many supporters he also has many detractors that hates his guts.

In particular, his stance on the Israel/Palestinian conflict have caused controversy. For example, he has announced that if he is elected Prime minister he will recognize the Palestinian state "as soon as possible". Such pledges have in the past not been taken lightly by the Israel lobby.

For example, the Swedish government recognized the State of Palestine in 2014 which caused Israel to recall its ambassador. In 2016 its Foreign minister Margot Wallström (who masterminded the recognition two years earlier) was placed number eight on Simon Wiesenthal Center's top "ten worst global antisemitic/anti-Israel incidents" that year for her comment about Israeli "extrajudicial executions".

Such juxtapositions of antisemitism and Israel-criticism or antizionism is a commonly used tactic by the Israel lobby.

Many of Corbyn's backers are convinced that the allegations of antisemitism is part of a campaign to influence the party's view on Israel and the Palestinians. I will cite their beliefs and evidence for their beliefs. For example, Jonathan Cook on MiddleEastEye wrote:

There are mounting indications that the intensifying campaign by the Israel lobby in the UK against Jeremy Corbyn, the leader of the parliamentary opposition, is starting to have precisely such self-harming repercussions.

In the three years since he was elected to lead the Labour party, Corbyn has faced non-stop accusations that his party has an endemic "anti-Semitism problem", despite all evidence to the contrary. Of late, Corbyn himself has become the chief target of such allegations.

Or Hilary Wise, speaking at a Labour party conference:

I've never actually seen anything quite like, it is a campaign of slurs and accusations of antisemitism largely against the leadership of Jeremy Corbyn, against the left of the party. I have looked into these allegations very carefully and academically, a few of them are justified, most of them actually are not. I'm afraid it is an orchestrated campaign. If you want to know a little about how the orchestration works, you can watch the Al-Jazeera program, the documentary which it made two years ago. It is called "The Lobby" you can watch it online. [Here the moderator interrupts her and asks her to be careful because she are steering into territory (something unheard)] Sorry, I'm being extremely careful..

Watch that documentary so that you can see what we're up against.

As the prospect of a Jeremy Corbyn led government gets ever closer, I'm afraid the campaign will get ratcheted up. And also the list of people being denounced for being antisemitic, often just being proponents of Palestinian rights, that list will get longer and longer. [moderator interrupts again]

The rounds of applause that can be heard from the audience confirms that these beliefs are not fringe within the Labour party.

Labour Friends of Israel (LFI)

One group alleged to participate in this campaign against Corbyn is LFI. As its name suggests, its mission is to strengthen ties between Israel and the Labour party, such as by sponsoring MPs visits to israel. But it has also been accused of inappropriate collusion with Israel. Ruth George, an MP who sides with Corbyn, wrote:

Support from the State of Israel, which supports both Conservative and Labour ‘Friends of Israel’, of which Luciana [Berger] was chair, is possible and I would not condemn those who suggest it, especially when the group’s financial backers are not being revealed.

It’s important for democracy to know the financial backers for any political group or policy.

George apologized and said she was "deeply sorry for her ill-thought out and poorly worded comment". Nevertheless, her statements echoed suspicions about the organization being funded by Israel.

Joan Ryan's accounts of antisemitism

In 2016, Joan Ryan, LFI Chairperson at the time, who manned the organizations stall in a Labour conference reported on Twitter:

We've had a fantastic day, loads of party members signing up to our supporters list, but we have also had three incidents of anti-Semitic harassment on our stand to the people who are staffing that stall today and that, I think, tells you something about why we need to be having this against anti-Semitism rally.

This led to an investigation within the Labour party of Jean Fitzpatrick, one of the persons accused of committing antisemitic harassment. Unbeknownst to Ryan, the discussion she had with Fitzpatrick was being filmed by an undercover Al-Jazeera reporter. After it was released to the public it appeared to many in the Labour party that the allegations didn't hold water.

After leaving the party, citing rampart antisemitism, she received death threats, among them one which read "Stop telling lies about Jeremy Corbyn – he is a decent man, you lying Jew whore. You need to be shoved right back in the ovens."

Israeli influence

There is some evidence of Israeli involvement in the "civil war" in the Labour party and that the activity is directed from the secretive Ministry of Strategic Affairs. In 2016 Israel's embassy in London sent a leaked diplomatic cable to Jerusalen, complaining about the ministry's political activity in Britain:

"'operating' Jewish organisations directly from Jerusalem ... is liable to be dangerous" and "could encounter opposition from the organisations themselves, given their legal status; Britain isn't the US!"

Another example is a "mission" that surfaced on Act.IL, a phone app developed by the Israeli-American Council and sponsored by the aforementioned ministry used to coordinate social media user. The mission asked the app's users to post and like negative comments on a Huffington post story about Jeremy Corbyn. The story was first broke by the Twitter account @AntiBDSApp run by Canadian activist Michael Bueckert.

A third example is the Israeli embassy scandal uncovered in 2017. In it Israeli embassy official Shai Masot was caught discussing how to "take down" pro-Palestinian British MP Alan Duncan. Masot is also heard discussing with Joan Ryan Israeli funding for LFI members visits to Israel:

“What happened with the names that we put into the Embassy, Shai?” Ryan inquired. “Just now we’ve got the money, it’s more than one million pounds, it’s a lot of money,” Masot replied. “I know, it must be,” said Ryan. “And now I’ve got the money so from Israel so… it’s not physical, it’s an approval,” Masot continued to explain. “I didn’t think you had it in your bag!” joked Ryan.

This lead to a scandal in which the Israeli embassy distanced itself from Masot who it claimed was a "junior employee" who had acted on his own. He was subseqently forced to resign. Unsurprisingly, Corbynites believe he was thrown under the bus.

Recently a group of Israeli laywers, academics and human rights activists have submitted freedom of information requests to two Israeli government departments - the Ministry of Strategic Affairs and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs - which they suspect have been meddling in UK politics.

Antisemitism or antizionism?

Almost all the allegations appear to be related to the Israel-Palestinian conflict. Some appear (to me) to be maybe antisemitic but also very antizionist. For example, the map of Israel interposed on the United States, shared by Naz Shah on Twitter in 2014 which she later apologized for:

enter image description here

However, the American scholar and prominent antizionist Norman Finkelstein defended the map and thought it was funny:

I’m not adept enough with computers to compose any image. But I did post the map on my website in 2014. An email correspondent must have sent it. It was, and still is, funny. Were it not for the current political context, nobody would have noticed Shah’s reposting of it either. Otherwise, you’d have to be humourless. These sorts of jokes are a commonplace in the U.S. So, we have this joke: Why doesn’t Israel become the 51st state? Answer: Because then, it would only have two senators. As crazy as the discourse on Israel is in America, at least we still have a sense of humour. It’s inconceivable that any politician in the U.S. would be crucified for posting such a map.

Other examples

Above I only list Naz Shah as one example. Many more are in the same vein:

Ken Livingstone's comments while discussing Naz Shah:

Let’s remember when Hitler won his election in 1932, his policy then was that Jews should be moved to Israel. He was supporting Zionism – this before he went mad and ended up killing six million Jews.

Some felt the comments were antisemitic others did not. Himself he claimed he was the target of a witch hunt. In 2016 Jackie Walker was expelled from the Labor party for (among other things) writing in a Facebook post:

I’m sure you know, millions more Africans were killed in the African Holocaust and their oppression continues today on a global scale in a way it doesn’t for Jews...and many Jews (my ancestors too) were the chief financiers of the sugar and slave trade which is of course why there were so many early synagogues in the Caribbean.

So who are victims and what does it mean? We are victims and perpetrators to some extent through choice. And having been a victim does not give you a right to be a perpetrator.

Again, some felt the comments were antisemitic others did not. Walker has since then produced a documentary about it called The Lynching. Corbyn has on several ocassions been accused of associating with either terrorists or alleged antisemites.

Al-Jazeera documentary

A lot of the information in this answer comes either directly or indirectly from the 2017 undercover documentary The lobby by Al-Jazeera.


Of course it should be noted that those who oppose Corbyn have the exact opposite view. Their view is that the allegations are not part of an orchestrated campaign to oust Corbyn and that allegations of antisemitism are not used as a smear tactic.

To be clear, I'm not asking for opinion or discussion, what I am asking is if there are any reputable reports I could look at that could give me an analysis or breakdown of where the accusations have originated & what subdivisions within the party have received what portions of them.

While no such breakdown exists (but see the Chakrabarti inquiry which concluded that "the Labour Party is not overrun by antisemitism" or the Britain Israel Communications and Research Centre report which came to the opposite conclusion), it is clear that most of the allegations have been levied at Corbyn himself, his supporters and/or pro-Palestinian MP:s. It is also clear that many of the allegations come from pro-Jewish or pro-Israeli individuals and organizations. Which is quite obvious since such individuals are likely to be more concerned about antisemitism than the general British public.

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    Chakrabarti subsequently got a peerage. Did Chakrabarti answer fully all questions about that conflict of interest?
    – Golden Cuy
    Mar 9, 2019 at 1:25
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    I'm downvoting this, because although it has plenty of sources, the (in my opinion inaccurate) implication is that "the Israel lobby" is primarily behind accusations of anti-Semitism in the Labour party.
    – Obie 2.0
    Apr 19, 2019 at 2:20
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    Or, in addition, the map image actually was quite bad. It's saying, basically, kick all the Jews out of Israel and send them to the US. Which is a decent illustration, in itself, of how people sometimes defend themselves against accusations of anti-Semitism by claiming that it's simply "anti-Zionism." It's probably correct to characterize it as anti-Semitic and also anti-Zionist, but it kind of misses the point. It's like saying that birtherism was racist but also very anti-Democrat.
    – Obie 2.0
    Apr 19, 2019 at 2:44
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    Feel free to downvote and/or write your own answer. Many questions on politics.SE deserves multiple answers to cover all viewpoints. Keep in mind that the OP asked "Is there any evidence that these accusations [are] motivated by other agendas rather than honest concerns about antisemitism within the party?" so an analysis of such evidence, which I've provided, is warranted. The evidence has led to Corbyn's supporters suspecting that the allegations are at least partially about ridding the party of Corbyn, due to his pro-Palestinian remarks. Apr 19, 2019 at 13:32
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    I didn't cite many accusations in my answer because a) it's already five pages long b) all I've read (Livingstone, Walker, etc) are identical to the Naz Shah controversy: one group claims it's antisemitism and the other claims it's only critical of Israel c) the reader gains nothing reading my recounting of the incidents. I don't think the quotes are even slightly hateful against Jews. Therefore I wouldn't fairly represent the positions of LFI and JLM, so why try? I can cover the Corbynites views because I understand them - someone else has to write about their opponents views. Apr 19, 2019 at 13:56

So I'm wondering if the statistics of where the allegations have originated & at who they have been directed would tend to support or discredit that impression.

While I do not have statistics to hand, no, the statistics cannot this without a lot of additional research for a couple of reasons:

  1. In order to use the 'directed at' criteria with any meaning, we would need to collect cases of antisemitism in the labour party that did not cause complaint. This cannot be gleaned from any data set that exists; it would require further research.

  2. The 'high profile' effect. When someone of a high profile is accused of tolerating something, people tend to give their friends and supporters a lot of scrutiny. This means that if their friends have been saying stuff they are likely to have this dug up. Thus to make a fair comparison you'd need to find a high-profile member of the Blairite wing who called an organisation such as Hamas* friends, for example.

  3. People tend not to criticise their own. This means that if a problem is more prevalent in a section of society, you would expect the majority of criticism to come from outside that section. This is a widely known phenomenon, which can be seen across all parts of society in regards to very many failings

In addition to the problems with using such statistics, even collecting such statistics is not going to be simple. For example, definitions would be tricky: would you call Ken Livingston a Corbynite? Would you factor in that he'd been criticized on the subject before Corbyn came to power? What about an accusation that came from multiple sources?

*quotes from their charter taken from https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hamas_Covenant

our struggle against the Jews is very great and very serious

The Day of Judgment will not come until Muslims fight the Jews, when the Jew will hide behind stones and trees. The stones and trees will say, 'O Muslim, O servant of God, there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him.' Only the Gharkad tree would not do that, because it is one of the trees of the Jews.

With their money, they took control of the world media, news agencies, the press, publishing houses, broadcasting stations, and others. With their money they stirred revolutions in various parts of the world with the purpose of achieving their interests and reaping the fruit therein. They were behind the French Revolution, the Communist revolution and most of the revolutions we heard and hear about, here and there. With their money, they formed secret societies, such as Freemason, Rotary Clubs, the Lions and others in different parts of the world for the purpose of sabotaging societies and achieving Zionist interests. With their money they were able to control imperialistic countries and instigate them to colonize many countries in order to enable them to exploit their resources and spread corruption there.

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    None of your arguments against the statistics being relevant (or rather possible to interpret any conclusions from) are neither correct nor truthful as applied to my question, not when you pretend who have they come from is in some way irrelevant, there are a very many groups who are not the labour party & a very many groups within labour who are not part of Corbyn's supporters & allies within the party, yet you try to imply that if nearly all the complaints are found to issue from one very small sub-group of individuals within the party that wouldn't have any significance?
    – Pelinore
    Mar 3, 2019 at 19:18
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    ^ Also, this "answer" is not in any way an attempt in good faith to answer the question, the question was "are there any any reputable reports I could look at that could give me an analysis or breakdown of where the accusations have originated & what subdivisions within the party have received what portions of them" ~ a no or a yes (with a link) would be an answer, this isn't, you just want to tell me (again) that I'm not allowed to ask such a thing.
    – Pelinore
    Mar 3, 2019 at 19:23
  • 'a no or a yes (with a link) would be an answer,' if you wanted that as an answer, the question could have been significantly shorter. Like not including the part I decided to answer...
    – user19831
    Mar 3, 2019 at 19:32
  • The title "Where have most of the accusations of antisemitism in the labour party come from?" the highlighted bit at the end "To be clear, I'm not asking for opinion or discussion, what I am asking is if there are any reputable reports I could look at that could give me an analysis or breakdown of where the accusations have originated & what subdivisions within the party have received what portions of them." what did you not find clear, what could you have possibly not found clear.
    – Pelinore
    Mar 3, 2019 at 19:37
  • Well then, you could have left out your speculation from the question. Its a bit rich including what you think such statistics may reveal and then complain that an answer cannot address the premise mentioned in the question. I also do point out that the statistics are unlikely to exist as the definition is too fuzzy.
    – user19831
    Mar 3, 2019 at 19:42

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