This, to no surprise at all, included Countdown numbers person Rachel Riley, who was a guest of Gammon Emeritus Nick Ferrari on LBC. She made this claim: “under Jeremy Corbyn's leadership complaints about anti-Semitism skyrocketed … And they chose not to deal with them”. That would be why anti-Semitism was made a disciplinary offence under Corbyn’s leadership - and this was supported by the Jewish Labour Movement.
As to not dealing with complaints, new party General Secretary Jennie Formby overhauled the procedure for dealing with those complaints so that they could be dealt with more rapidly. And “skyrocketed”? Until Ms Formby arrived, as she told MPs, “there was no consistent and comprehensive system for recording and processing cases of antisemitism”. Until she took over, and made sure they were recorded.
So it would be interesting to see where Ms Riley got the idea that the number of complaints “skyrocketed”. What would be yet more interesting would be her ponying up evidence to back up this claim: “He's travelled across the world to lay wreaths for terrorists who murdered Jews”. Because as far as is known, he hasn’t.
This is most likely referring to Corbyn’s visit to Tunisia in 2014. Here's what the BBC explainer says: “The Labour leader has said he visited the cemetery to honour innocent people killed in a 1985 Israeli air strike. But he has faced criticism because the event took place near memorials for people who were accused of having links to a terrorist attack at the 1972 Olympic Games”. Who were accused of having links to the attack.
There was more. “During the trip, Mr Corbyn took up an invitation to join a delegation paying respects to those killed in a 1985 Israeli bombing of the Palestinian Liberation Organisation (PLO) headquarters in Tunis. Photographs suggest a wreath was laid at the base of a large statue erected in memory of the victims and that Mr Corbyn was next to the memorial, mostly in the background, not holding a wreath”.
It would have been difficult for Corbyn, or anyone else present at that event, to “lay wreaths for terrorists who murdered Jews”, because the terrorists concerned, the Black September group responsible for the massacre of eleven Israeli athletes and a West German Police officer in 1972 at the Munich Olympics, are buried in Libya.
Corbyn was honouring the (at least) 47 people killed as a result of the IDF on the PLO Headquarters in Tunisia. The action was condemned by the UN Security Council; the USA did not exercise its veto, but abstained. He was not honouring Black September.
Ms Riley would do well to choose her words more carefully in future. Just a thought.
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