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(123 Posts)
WadesNan Thu 11-Jul-19 09:17:53

There are many Labour Party members on GN and I would be interested in their thoughts on last night's programme. Having grown up in a Labour supporting household I know the vast majority of Labour Party members are not racist or anti-semitic, however I do feel this programme raises questions about the upper echelon of the party.

If it had been one or two people making the allegations I could accept the denials being issued by the Labour Party that these are just "disaffected former employees". However, there were several people interviewed, some in very senior positions.

Eloethan Thu 11-Jul-19 09:58:20

I didn't watch it. I knew it would be a hatchet job, along the same lines as the one done about Corbyn when he was voted leader. Just a continuation of the deluge of allegations that have followed him and those who refuse to denounce him.

When is the expose due to be aired about the Conservative party's racism?

Urmstongran Thu 11-Jul-19 10:03:18

Maybe ‘Panorama’ will do a programme on that too - in the interest of balance and fairness!

Oldwoman70 Thu 11-Jul-19 10:03:36

I did watch this programme and agree it has raised some concerns. I don't think the allegations are a reflection on the general membership but I do think those now running the party have questions to answer.

Anniebach Thu 11-Jul-19 10:03:53

How can you dismiss it as a hatchet job Eleothan you didn’t watch it ?

Eloethan Thu 11-Jul-19 11:18:53

I wasn't aware of it until now but John Ware, a Sun journalist and a well known critic of Corbyn, also produced the 2015 documentary to which I referred in my OP "Jeremy Corbyn: Labour's Earthquake". That documentary was full of smears and innuendo and was so obviously partial. It should have been presented as such - an opinion piece by someone who had an anti-Corbyn agenda.

It was my understanding that, when presenting political programmes, the BBC has to ensure neutrality by giving equal coverage to different point of view and interpretations of events. This patently did not happen with the "Earthquake" documentary and, given that it was presented by a Corbyn-hater, was unlikely to happen with the anti-semitism documentary.

Oldwoman70 Thu 11-Jul-19 11:25:02

I understand Corbyn has previously praised John Ware for his "ever vigilant investigative journalism" or is that only when his reports are pro-Labour?

Anniebach Thu 11-Jul-19 11:31:27

But Corbyn is on record for saying

In minutes from a 2002 Parliament motion, the Islington MP said the House “warmly congratulates BBC Panorama and the ever-vigilant investigative journalist, John Ware, for their perseverance and courage in researching and broadcasting”.

The motion referred to a programme investigating “collusion between British intelligence services and loyalist paramilitaries” and was unearthed hours after the Labour Party scorned Mr Ware for claims of bias when investigating complaints of racism.

trisher Thu 11-Jul-19 12:11:52

I didn't watch it because I was out, but I might look at it on catch-up. However I will do so in the knowledge that John Ware has been criticised for his 'documentaries' that have been anti-Islam. That he is not a disnterested observer as the makers of true documentaries should be but a strong supporter of Israel and an opponent of Corbyn. I don't expect balance.

Anniebach Thu 11-Jul-19 12:17:11

Corbyn thought differently

WadesNan Thu 11-Jul-19 12:27:03

When I started this thread I was hoping for a discussion on the points raised in the programme. I gather Tom Watson has now said that questions have to be asked following the documentary

Sleepygran Thu 11-Jul-19 12:30:27

I don't know what to think.
IMO Jeremy Corbyn is not a racist or anti Semite.He can see there are wrongs on both sides of the Israel Palestine problem as there are in all conflicts,no side is blameless.
If there are serious issues with anti semitism in the Labour Party then it needs sorting out properly by an independent complaints office.
The same independent complaints office should deal with islamophibia in the Tory party.

trisher Thu 11-Jul-19 12:38:12

Annie that was 17 years ago. If you check on John Ware he began with some very interesting investigative journalism and documentary making however since then he has slipped into using his skills to promote his own views. So in 2006, Responding to complaints about another Panorama edition, Faith, Hate and Charity produced by Ware, the Charity Commission in 2009[9] dismissed its allegations that British based Palestinian relief charity Interpal was funding organisations involved in terrorism.[10] The Muslim Council of Britain described Ware as "an agenda-driven pro-Israel polemicist".[11] The programme resulted in the BBC paying undisclosed libel damages and giving a public apology to the General Manager of Islamic Relief UK, who was prominently shown while not being a subject of the programme
I am seriously concerned that the BBC should continue to use a documentary maker who has cost them money in libel damages in the past.

Iam64 Thu 11-Jul-19 13:01:00

Wadesnan, I watched the programme. I left the Labour Party a while ago but will vote for my current MP but not if he retires and is replaced by a momentum person.

If an organisation has seven ex employees in a relatively small department, who became ill as a result of work related stress, at the least it has a problem in staff care. One of the staff said she decided she had to speak out after a visit to Berlin, where it’s history is well recorded. She saw there what happens if workers are silent, don’t expose problems. She said anti semitism was by far the biggest concern expressed to the complaints department.

Supporters of the leadership can dismiss this programme, as they dismiss other concerns about the problem in the party. I’m not so complacent.

Beckett Thu 11-Jul-19 13:01:36

Just read a report (admittedly in the DM) that Labour party activists have sent out memos telling members to use social media to "drown out" the claims in the Panorama programme. Instead they are to criticise the BBC and focus on allegations the Tory party are Islmophobic

trisher Thu 11-Jul-19 13:07:42

Beckett I think the BBC has laid itself open to criticism by using someone who has in the past resulted in them paying libel damages. It really isn't good use of licence payer's money.

yggdrasil Thu 11-Jul-19 13:14:21

I didn't see it. But did it differentiate between anti-semitism and condemnation of the actions of the Israelis?

lemongrove Thu 11-Jul-19 13:23:41

Watch the programme before commenting is what I would say.
Leaving aside what you think of John Ware ( and as others have said, he was praised by Corbyn in the past) listen to what the team investigating anti semitism reports had to say, it was damning of Milne and others in Corbyn’s Office,
And the fact that they themselves came under fire constantly from the ‘upper echelons’ while simply trying to do their job, so much so that they left their jobs and the LP and were very distressed.
The influx of Marxists into the party over the last few years and Corbyn’s weak reponses to this problem is why it has mushroomed, added to which his friendships and platform sharing if those who think Israel has no right to an existence.
If Iam64 and Anniebach and other former Labour voters can see there is a real problem, why can’t all Labour posters on here?
Do you think it’s a problem worth having to keep an increased membership, therefore sweep the antisemitism allegations under the carpet, or do you think the LP should never be criticised, and choose to never believe a single thing that is bad about it?
Genuinely curious btw

trisher Thu 11-Jul-19 13:36:42

Suppose you try sticking to the thread lemon and discuss the programme. Are you happy that the BBC uses a documentary maker who has been found to make programmes that make false allegations and resulted in a libel payment?

Grany Thu 11-Jul-19 13:37:09

Well Said Eloethan and trisher The BBC is Bias.

This is what Jeremy Corbyn has done to combat racism and anti semitism in his party. You can't say he is racist that is plainly ludicrous.

Antisemitism exists in the Labour Party, as it does in all parts of society. More than any other political party, Labour has led the way in improving and implementing processes to address the issue effectively. This is not reflected in media coverage of the issue.

This article was originally published in February. As the BBC’s Panoramaprogramme prepares what is expected to be a regurgitation of Murdoch press smears against Labour and its leader Jeremy Corbyn, it is being republished.

Labour members and supporters will be more than familiar with the scale, intensity and sheer volume of Establishment smear campaigns against Corbyn, but the latest campaign is expected to plumb new depths. The information below will help to correct the record.

To correct the imbalance caused by poor mainstream journalist, below are forty facts about the issue that will rarely, if ever, appear in the so-called ‘MSM’:

1. In October 1936, Jeremy Corbyn’s mother participated in the battle of Cable Street indefence of British Jews after British fascists had staged an assault on the area. Corbyn was raised in a household passionately opposed to antisemitism in all its forms.

2. In 23rd April 1977, Corbyn organised a counter-demonstrationto protect Wood Green from a neo-nazi march through the district. The area had a significant Jewish population.

3. On 7 November 1990, Corbyn signed a motion condemning the rise of antisemitism in the UK

4. In 2002 Jeremy Corbyn led a clean-up and vigil at Finsbury Park Synagogue which had been vandalised in an anti-Semitic attack

5. On 30 April 2002, Corbyn tabled a motion in the House of Commons condemning ananti-Semitic attackon a London Synagogue

6. On 26 November 2003, Jeremy Corbyn signed a Parliamentary motioncondemningterrorist attacks on two synagogues

7. In February 2009, Jeremy Corbyn signed a parliamentary motion condemning a fascist for establishing a website to host antisemitic materials

8. On 24th March 2009, Corbyn signed a Parliamentary motion praising British Jews who resisted the Holocaust by risking their lives to save potential victims

9. Nine years ago, Corbyn signed a Parliamentary motion praising “Jewish News”for its pioneering investigation into the spread ofAntisemitism on Facebook

10. On 9 February 2010, Corbyn signed a Parliamentary motion calling for an investigation into Facebook and its failure to prevent the spread of antisemitic materials on its site.

11. On 27 October 2010, Corbyn signed a Parliamentary motion praising the late Israeli Prime Minister for pursuing a two state solution to the Israel/Palestine question.

12. On 13 June 2012, Corbyn sponsored and signed a motion condemning the BBC for cutting a Jewish Community television programme from its schedule.

13. 1 October 2013, Corbyn appeared on the BBC to defend Ralph Miliband against vile antisemitic attacks by the UK press.

14. Five years ago Corbyn signed a Parliamentary motion condemning antisemitism in sport.

15. On 1 March 2013, Corbyn signed a Parliamentary motion condemning and expressing concern at growing levels of antisemitism in European football.

16. On 9 January 2014, Jeremy Corbyn signed a Parliamentary motion praising Holocaust education programmes that had taken 20,000 British students to Auschwitz.

17. On 22 June 2015, Corbyn signed a Parliamentary motion expressing concern at the neo-nazi march being planned for an area of London with a significant Jewish population.

18. On 9 October 2016, Corbyn, close to tears, commemorated the 1936 Battle of Cable Street and recalled the role his mother played in defending London’s Jewish community.

19. On 3 December 2016, Corbyn made a visit to Terezin Concentration Camp when Jewish people were murdered by the Nazis. It was Jeremy’s third visit to such a camp, all of which were largely unreported in the most read UK papers.

20. Last year, a widely-endorsed 2018 academic report found ninety-five serious reporting failures in the reporting of the Labour antisemitism story with the worst offenders The Sun, the Mail & the BBC.

21. On 28 February 2016, five months after becoming leader, Jeremy Corbyn appointed Baroness Royall to investigate antisemitism at Oxford University Labour Club.

22. On 27 April 2016 Corbyn suspended an MP pending an investigation into antisemitism.

23. A day later, Corbyn suspended the three times Mayor of London after complaints of antisemitic comments. Party.

24. On 29 April 2016, Corbyn launched an inquiry into the prevalence of antisemitism in the Labour Party. In spite of later changes in how the inquiry was reported, it was initially praised by Jewish community organisations.

25. In Corbyn’s first seven months as leader of the Labour Party, just tencomplaints were received about antisemitism. 90% of those were suspended from the Labour Party within 24 hours.

26. In September 2017, Corbyn backed a motion at Labour’s annual conference introducing a new set of rules regarding antisemitism.

27. In the six months that followed the introduction of the new code of conduct, to March 2018, 94% of the fifty-four people accused of antisemitism remained suspended or barred from Labour Party membership. Three of the fifty-four were exonerated.

28. When Jennie Formby became general secretary of the party last year, she appointed a highly-qualified in-house Counsel, as recommended in the Chakrabarti Report.

29. In 2018, Labour almost doubled the size of its staff team handling investigations and dispute processes.

30. Last year, to speed up the handling of antisemitism cases, smaller panels of 3-5 NEC members were established to enable cases to be heard more quickly.

31. Since 2018, every complaint made about antisemitism is allocated its own independent specialist barrister to ensure due process is followed.

32. The entire backlog of cases outstanding upon Jennie Formby becoming General Secretary of the Labour Party was cleared within 6 months of Jennie taking up her post.

33. Since September 2018, Labour has doubled the size of its National Constitutional Committee (NCC) – its senior disciplinary panel – from 11 to 25 members to enable it to process cases more quickly.

34. Under Formby and Labour’s left-run NEC, NCC arranged elections at short notice to ensure the NCC reached its new full capacity without delay.

35. Since later 2018, the NCC routinely convenes a greater number of hearing panels to allow cases to be heard and finalised without delay.

36. In 2018, the NEC established a ‘Procedures Working Group’ to lead reforms in the way disciplinary cases are handled.

37. The NEC adopted the IHRA working definition of antisemitism and all eleven examples of antisemitism attached to it.

38. A rule change agreed at Conference in 2018 means that all serious complaints, including antisemitism, are dealt with nationally to ensure consistency.

39. Last year, Jennie Formby wrote to the admins and moderators of Facebook groups about how they can effectively moderate online spaces and requested that any discriminatory content be reported to the Labour Party for investigation.

40. Since last year, no one outside Labour’s Governance and Legal Unit can be involved in decision-making on antisemitism investigations. This independence allows decisions free from political influence to be taken.


There is more antisemitism in the Tory party and Islamaphobia don't hear about that.

And this by Gideon Levy

lemongrove Thu 11-Jul-19 13:42:22

The last two posts......exactly what I would have predicted.

Anniebach Thu 11-Jul-19 13:59:47

Why doesn’t Labour sue the BBC ?

Beckett Thu 11-Jul-19 15:31:24

I would agree that Corbyn himself is probably not anti-semitic however I think what the programme was trying to show is that those in the Labour party who do hold those views are being allowed to continue almost completely unchecked.

Anniebach Thu 11-Jul-19 15:58:27

I don’t believe Corbyn can look at things from both sides,
he supports a United Ireland so supported the IRA.

He supports Palestine so attends a wreath laying ceremony for terrorists who brutally murdered innocent Olympians .

Refuses to accept an invitation to visit The Israeli Holocaust

I am not attacking him, just think he has tunnel vision , he believes in his causes but cannot see the other side in a conflict .

Iam64 Thu 11-Jul-19 16:02:55

Yggdrasil, yes the programme gave numerous examples of those who took part stressing the difference between anti semitism and criticism of the actions of the Isreali government.