JLM realises that calling non-Zionist Jews imposters & ‘contrary’ is unacceptable

Yesterday, Young members of the Jewish Labour Movement, posted on the JLM website a letter that – much to their vexation – the Guardian had declined to publish. It isn’t hard to see why: it repeats the mainstream media’s default position that Labour under Corbyn is a ‘haven’ for anti-Semites. JLM’s complaint that they are a ‘group of Jews’ whose views are not being heard is the complete inverse of reality.

The Zionist contention that groups like JLM and JSocs/UJS are the victims not the aggressors is becoming increasingly risible: they have been in the forefront of the smear campaign against the Labour Left; one of their targets, Malia Bouattia, was fortunate enough to have a strong, wide base of support and nerves of steel to withstand their onslaught. The JSoc presidents published TWO – not one – open letters in their attempt to destroy Bouattia’s reputation prior to her election as NUS president, demanding she prove she wasn’t an anti-Semite: an action that was picked up with glee by every media outlet as evidence that all British Jewish Students lived in fear of her racist reign. This intimidation was only a continuation of the harassment she and others experienced as Palestine solidarity activists on campus, leading Bouattia in 2011 to call Birmingham with its large, pro-Israel JSoc ‘something of a Zionist outpost.’

In the preamble to their unpublished Guardian letter, Young JLM members referred contemptuously to a letter signed by 88 British Jews (one of many critical responses to the Chief Rabbi’s article that Zionism=Judaism), by writing,

It appears that some of those signatories only identify as Jews for purposes of taking such contrary positions.

Perhaps in response to protests that it was offensive, demeaning – even racist – to portray non-Zionist Jews as imposters and ‘contrary,’ JLM removed that sentence. Liron Velleman who posted the letter on the JLM website is both Youth and Students Officer at JLM, and incoming UJS Campaigns Officer. Here is a screengrab of the original, and the updated website post below it. As Jews Sans Frontieres has written: ‘I had a feeling they’d excise the offensive suggestion that Jewish critics of Israel aren’t quite the real thing,’ quipping, ‘spot the difference’:



Elly Fryksos

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7 thoughts on “JLM realises that calling non-Zionist Jews imposters & ‘contrary’ is unacceptable”

    1. Hi Levi, I don’t know you, but I just want to express my gratitude at the stand you take, and also admiration that you are prepared to take the abuse (much of it quite nasty I imagine) which goes with that position.
      So often one is close to giving up hope on this subject as with many others, then you get glimmers of hope that not all is lost…

      1. Thanks very much for that. Here’s a curious coincidence. I did the Seder night at the house of a friend called Neville. His nickname at school was Nibs.

        It can’t have been you. He’s an old friend, he’d never praise me like that!

        1. Héhé…actually I take it from a character in the children’s series Camberwick Green…rthus revealing my age.

      1. Yeah I responded to that and later on Pollard’s timeline I suggested the Jewish Chronicle has journos who have been know to lie for racist war criminals. A CST activist said that my tweets was “astonishing” but he wasn’t so “astonished” at antisemitic abuse by Zionists. Funny bloke.

  1. Their complaint seems to be that we are setting out positions that are far from mainstream Jewish labour perspectives. Pray tell what ‘mainstream JL perspectives’ are and how they differ from mainstream conservative positions.

    Their letter was rejected because it was just a hollow repetition of all the usual Zionist tropes – long on vague assertion and short on specifics. Still the young Zionist bureaucrats have a long way to go.

    I guess it must irk them that some Jews identify with Jewish traditions of anti-racism and anti-Zionism and not with their Apartheid creed.

    Still at least they realised that their offensive, racist and anti-semitic post needed altering!

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