CST Blog

John Mann: If Labour cannot combat racism then we are nothing

5 May 2016

Labour’s John Mann MP has long shown that the fight against antisemitism is not something that should be determined by what political party you are a member of. Through his leadership of the Parliamentary Committee Against Antisemitism, he has consistently challenged antisemitism, regardless of its ideological origin. Perhaps even more importantly, he has ensured that opposition to antisemitism is something that members of all political parties can, and do, play a leading part in.

Most recently, John Mann’s commitment came to national attention when he challenged Ken Livingstone for his ugly, stupid and insulting attempt to associate Zionism with Nazism and Hitler. It was not the first time that Ken Livingstone has used Nazism as an insult on Jewish matters. It may not be the last. Nevertheless, we hope, that it will be the last time he does it as a senior member of the Labour Party.    

 Now, please read John’s article in the Jewish Chronicle, in which he states why he stood up to Ken Livingstone:          

Antisemitism is racism, it has no place in society and therefore no place in the Labour party and I can guarantee that it will always be challenged. It is for that reason that I confronted Ken Livingstone for his grotesque comments last week.

To consider Hitler as anything other than a racist, genocidal despot is historically untrue. Britain – including many Jews – fought against the Nazis for our vision of democracy and paid a high price for doing so. We will not allow any rewriting of the history of Adolf Hitler and the Nazi party’s racist ideology.

Shining a light on antisemitism and other racism tends to flush out the cockroaches and so it has been little surprise that I have received extensive abuse from racists and antisemites. I have been asked who my paymasters are, had my loyalty challenged and been told that my work on child abuse and on antisemitism is an elaborate cover for sinister conspiracies.

Some people are claiming that they’ve never seen antisemitism in all their time in the Labour party. The emails I can show them will make it quite clear that overt antisemitism is alive and well.

All true Labour supporters will not flinch in trying to combat this curse but there is a loud and vocal minority, some sadly in the Labour party, who are delighting in trying to re-write history. Never have so many experts in history emerged as quickly as last weekend, each armed with cuttings from Wikipedia or obscure websites. Ironically the most cited websites are run by American white supremacist Holocaust deniers. I know people are shocked at the level of anti-Jewish hatred and Holocaust revisionism that is going on and so now is the time for leadership. Having poked the hornets’ nest we must now rip it from the tree.

Read the full article in the Jewish Chronicle here

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