(JTA) – British Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn’s longtime secretary urged supporters to oppose candidates who appeared in Jewish media, The Sun reported on Monday.
In a pamphlet published by the Palestinian Solidarity Campaign in 2010, Nicolette Petersen recommended that Labour supporters “read the Jewish Chronicle online and look at websites that will show you who not to vote for,” asserting that it was better to divert support away from Labour than to support anyone considering himself a “friend of Israel.”
“This isn’t about helping Palestinians. It’s about attacking Jews,” commented Jewish Chronicle editor Stephen Pollard. “The recommendation that activists who want to rid parliament of Zionists use the Jewish Chronicle for a hit-list of targets exposes the truth: that they use the word Zionist as a euphemism for Jew.”
The incident is the latest of a string of revelations detailing Corbyn’s antipathy for the Jewish state and highlights the widening gap between the British left and the country’s Jewish community.
Last month, Britain’s three Jewish newspapers, including the Chronicle, united in publishing a front-page editorial warning of the “existential” threat to British Jewry that a government led by Jeremy Corbyn would pose.
“We do so because the party that was, until recently, the natural home for our community has seen its values and integrity eroded by Corbynite contempt for Jews and Israel,” the editorials said, referring to the Labour Party. “The stain and shame of anti-Semitism has coursed through Her Majesty’s Opposition since Jeremy Corbyn became leader in 2015.”
On Tuesday i24News reported that Corbyn had called Israeli opposition leader Tzipi Livni a “war criminal” during a 2010 visit to the Gaza Strip. Writing for the Morning Star, a Communist newspaper, he asserted that “any plans by the British government to curtail the opportunity to arrest” the former Israeli foreign minister would be “seen as yet another confirmation of British duplicity in the treatment of Palestinian people.”
That revelation came only a day after it emerged that Corbyn, already facing scrutiny over his contacts with various Palestinian terrorist groups, hosted a 2012 panel featuring a number of senior members of Hamas, the terrorist organization that controls Gaza.
Corbyn appeared beside several individuals who had been convicted of murder and had been freed the previous year in a prisoner swap.
Among those who appeared with Corbyn were Khaled Mashaal, who at the time was Hamas’ political chief, and Husam Badran, the erstwhile head of the group’s military wing who had overseen a series of bombings that killed dozens of Israeli civilians, including the 2001 attacks on the Sbarro pizzeria in Jerusalem and the Dolphinarium disco in Tel Aviv. Alongside Mashaal and Badran was Abdul Aziz Umar, who was responsible for the 2003 Cafe Hillel bombing in Jerusalem.
Corbyn said during the panel that “their contribution was fascinating and electrifying” despite the fact that the participants appeared to advocate violent attacks against Israel. Badran was filmed at the event saying that the Palestinians had been displaced by force and that “the return will only be viable through military and armed resistance and nothing else.”