Amanda Milling MP
“Sir Keir Starmer loyally served in Corbyn’s Shadow Cabinet as antisemitism ripped through the Labour Party. It’s time for Sir Keir Starmer to hold those responsible for this sorry period in Labour’s history to account” she sneered, managing to miss that had anti-Semitism “ripped through the Labour Party”, the EHRC would have said so. They didn’t.
What she also missed is that the EHRC investigation into Labour was set in train after a series of complains were made to it. A series of complaints could just as easily be laid at the Tories’ door - and not just on anti-Semitism. Tories from Bozo downwards have been indulging in racist behaviour, and getting away with it, for many years now.
Moreover, if the Campaign Against Anti-Semitism, with its sometimes less than appealing hangers-on, can get the attention of the EHRC, groups like the Muslim Council of Britain can do it too. The latter could bundle in the anti-Semitism with their complaint, to save the CAA and other Jewish voices the trouble. There is, after all, a lot of Tory racism out there.
On anti-Semitism, there was Suella Braverman’s unrepentant talk of “Cultural Marxism”, which came hard on the heels of a group of Tory Brexiteers calling themselves “The Grand Wizards”. OKKK? The Board of Deputies of British Jews were not happy about that, and said so. Later came Jacob Rees Mogg’s crossing the anti-Semitism line when he called Oliver Letwin and John Bercow “Illuminati who are taking the powers to themselves”.
Soon after that, we were treated to Priti Patel channelling her inner Viktor Orbán as she told “This daughter of immigrants needs no lectures from the North London metropolitan liberal elite”. Robert Peston suggested she should have phrased that differently - as in taking out the word “North”, which makes it into an anti-Semitic dog-whistle.
The use of anti-Semitic tropes continued as Rees Mogg suggested in the Commons that George Soros had been funding the Remain campaign in the EU referendum. And to top it all came Gove lecturing Aaron Bastani with “our Jewish friends and neighbours fear a Corbyn Government - time for you to stand with them and Israel”. Conflating “Jews” and “Israel” - a clear breach of the IHRA definition of anti-Semitism.
That much is bad. What is worse is the incidence of anti-black racism and Islamophobia in the Tory Party, as pointed up by the Tweeter known as Mates Jacob. They highlighted many serving Tory Councillors openly indulging in racist hate speech online. A dossier was sent to James Cleverly, who did precisely nothing about it.
Hope Not Hate commissioned polling that showed the Tories are in denial about Islamophobia. The party has promised an inquiry. There hasn’t been one. And there won’t be one, not while one of the worst offenders is in 10 Downing Street.
So it’s high time someone pitched a complaint to the EHRC. Hello Amanda Milling.
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