Jewish organisations have slammed Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn for not axing his Peterborough party candidate in today’s hotly contested by-election.
Labour hopeful Lisa Forbes liked a Facebook in April, stating Theresa May has a “Zionist slave master’s agenda and previously welcomed a post indulging a bizarre conspiracy theory that Mossad and the CIA are behind Daesh.
Forbes “wholeheartedly” apologised for not condemning the posts in a local newspaper and has agreed to undergo training.
Investigative journalist Iggy Ostanin broke the latest Labour anti-Semitism revelation.
“Regardless of whether I am elected, I will deepen my understanding of anti-Semitism, so I can act as an ally, challenging antisemitism wherever it occurs,” she said.
Forbes’ comments however resulted in short shrift from Jewish communal bodies.
Marie van der Zyl, Board of Deputies president, Simon Johnson, Jewish Leadership Council chief executive and David Delew, Community Security Trust chief executive called into question her suitability for public office.
“Ms Forbes has now apologised, saying she had not seen these words, but this stretches the limits of credulity, especially given the high profile problems in Labour and the previous anti-Semitism scandals in Peterborough Labour circles, such as Alan Bull and last November’s resignation of two senior councillors, who said they had been pressured against when trying to complain about anti-Semitism,” they explained.
“Ms Forbes also says she will seek anti-Semitism training. This is somewhat ironic given her previous rejection of the IHRA definition of anti-Semitism.”
The communal leaders added, “We are fed up hearing that Labour opposes anti-Semitism while repeatedly hearing excuses that its members accidentally missed the racism that was staring them in the face. Unless Labour disowns Lisa Forbes as a candidate, it will only confirm the Party’s shameful descent into the racist mess for which they are now being investigated by the Equality and Human Rights Commission.”
“It is beyond disturbing that Ms Forbes has liked and commented positively on posts espousing anti-Semitic conspiracy theories, and that Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour Party continue to endorse her nonetheless, with no sign of even the façade of disciplinary proceedings,” added Campaign Against Antisemitism.
CAA is to refer this latest incident to the Equality and Human Rights Commission for consideration during its investigation into anti-Semitism in the Labour Party.
By Howard Lawrence