Left antisemitism

Morning Star “actively foments antisemitism”?

Author

Jim Denham

A letter from Andrew Northall in Solidarity 515 takes issue with Sean Matgamna’s claim (in Solidarity 509) that the Morning Star “actively foments antisemitism.”

Comrade Northall describes the claim as “completely disgraceful” and something that “any reader” of that paper will know to be “completely untrue.”

As a daily reader of the Morning Star, I’d say Sean’s description is fully justified.

The Morning Star has, by its own admission, published at least one clearly antisemitic article:

Letters

I was catching up on a backlog of reading material, and I was genuinely shocked to read in Sean Matgamna’s piece The Willsman Affair (Solidarity 509) that the Morning Star daily newspaper “actively foments antisemitism”.

This is a completely disgraceful comment and, as any reader or the Star will know fine well, is completely untrue. Sean should ether provide some examples of “antisemitism” in the Star, “actively fomented” or otherwise, or withdraw that comment completely.

Robert Fine on antisemitism and Stalinism: a comment

Author

Eduardo Tovar

I read Dan Davison’s article on Robert Fine and the critique of antisemitism in Solidarity 512 with great interest.

While Davison’s overall tribute to Fine is both lucid and commendable, there are two significant aspects of Fine’s critical perspective that Davison left under-examined. These are, first, Fine’s understanding of the connections between antisemitism and racism and, second, his standpoint on Stalinism and anti-Stalinism.

A first step against antisemitism

Author

Dale Street

Dale Street reviews the Labour's Party's training materials on antisemitism.

The Labour Party training materials on antisemitism first promised in April of last year have now been produced and circulated to party members. Potentially, they could help to start a meaningful process of political discussion and education.

Corbyn in the 1980s

Author

Sean Matgamna

The Times of 6 July 2019 ran an article by Dominic Kennedy, "Corbyn's hard-left blueprint revealed", attacking Jeremy Corbyn for his links in the 1980s with Socialist Organiser, a forerunner of Solidarity. Sean Matgamna, editor of Socialist Organiser in the period described, talked to Solidarity.



We have serious political differences with Jeremy Corbyn as leader of the Labour Party.

Why and how the left has shifted on Israel

Author

Susie Linfield

Susie Linfield, author of The Lions’ Den: Zionism and the Left, talked with Martin Thomas from Solidarity.

Many of the eight writers you analyse had their thinking on Israel shaped by Stalinism. But you don’t mention Stalinism.

That was most true of Maxime Rodinson. He was a Stalinist, and even after he left the Communist Party, he remained a Stalinist. Then in some ways he substituted what he called the Arab Revolution for the Soviet Union.

Labour and antisemitism: yes, it’s a real problem

Author

Cathy Nugent

The BBC Panorama programme (10 July) about Labour’s antisemitism problem has intensified the Party’s internal row.

Unfortunately, because the programme was not well done, and because Labour’s response has been to “shoot the messenger” as Emily Thornberry rightly put it when criticising that reaction, the renewed row has brought very little light so far.

Thornberry said: “I think that we shouldn’t be going for the messengers, we should be looking at the message. I think that is what is important.

The record of Chris Williamson

Author

Keith Road

The issue with the suspended Labour MP Chris Williamson is not, as some in the Labour Party think, one off-beam remark in a Sheffield Momentum meeting, or a few incautious tweets.

Detailed web postings by RS21 member Dave Renton and socialist blogger “Bob from Brockley” have shown that Williamson has used his position as a prominent Corbyn-supporting MP to give the ideas of a segment of the far right a channel into the labour movement.

Robert Fine and the critique of antisemitism

Author

Dan Davison

Robert Fine, who died on 9 June 2018, was a socialist writer unafraid to stand up to much of the left’s received wisdom on the questions of Israel, Palestine, and antisemitism.

He opposed the “absolute anti-Zionist” standpoint that one should unreservedly object to (a) Israel’s very existence, rather than the oppressive practices of the Israeli state, and (b) any feelings of Jewish communal or national identification with Israel, even when such feelings are accompanied with harsh condemnation of the Israeli government or genuine horror at the Palestinians’ suffering.

Israelophobia is Stalinist regression

Author

Barry Finger

Barry Finger reviews Paul Kelemen’s book The British Left and Zionism: History of a Divorce (Manchester University Press, 2012)

This volume, which joins the herd of independent minds in churning the same old depleted groupthink, purports to challenge the claim that changes over the decades in the left’s appraisal of Zionism and the Palestinian cause stem from antisemitism.

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