The manufactured row this week about Jeremy Corbyn’s 2013 comments about a disruptive group of ‘zionists’ has taken an interesting turn with the revelation today by the Times of the identity of one of that group:
It’s an interesting turn because Mr Millett is a well-known figure at pro-Palestinian events to both pro-Palestine and pro-Israel activists:
Mr Millett also writes a blog – and one article in particular is very telling.
Yesterday, the SKWAWKBOX published an article showing comments by well-known supporter of Israel – and anti-Corbyn Labour activist – Luke Akehurst and by the Jewish Telegraph, who both acknowledged that many ‘zionists’ are not Jewish. This in itself is enough to discredit current attempts to claim that Corbyn’s comments about one small group of zionists is antisemitic.
Many of the non-Jewish zionists, as Akehurst also mentioned in his Jewish Telegraph interview, are fundamentalist Christians – the DUP is a handy example – who have their own motives for zionism, because they believe that the ‘Second Coming’ of Jesus can only take place after the restoration of Israel.
But those Christians sometimes also hold deeply antisemitic views – in particular that Jewish people are ‘Christ-killers’, a trope that played a key part in some of the ugliest historical behaviour towards Jews.
Titled “Ahava’s female staff suffer continued bullying”, the 2010 post features a video taken of a Christian female staffer who, when challenged to explain why she says the person making the video ‘killed Jesus’.
As the video shows – shown below with subtitles and with text of Millett’s article also included and with subtitles added – she responds, “Because you’re Jewish”:
Imagine if a Corbyn supporter had said that last week. But Millett’s response was to criticise those who asked the question – and to defend the woman’s comments as appearing antisemitic because of unfair editing:
‘Painting in the worst possible light’. It’s difficult to imagine a ‘light’ in which ‘you killed Jesus because you’re Jewish’ doesn’t look antisemitic. Yet according to pro-Palestinian group ISM, the Jewish Chronicle also published a similar defence by Mr Millett.
Again, imagine if a Corbyn supporter had been filmed saying those words this week. But instead we have myriad examples of a pointed – but definitively not antisemitic – comment by Jeremy Corbyn to a disruptive group of individuals being clearly ‘painted in the worst light’ in an attempt to attack him.
Richard Millett was contacted for comment. He responded:
Have you published an article attacking Corbyn for his antisemitic ‘English irony’ comment?As for my comment, yes the shop worker’s comment is indefensible, if she said it, but she was surrounded by a group of aggressive anti-Jewish men who were hounding, taunting and filming her while she was trying to earn her living so I felt sympathy for her plight. So, yes, the videos are highly edited. And, yes, his objective was to make her look like a nasty Christian fundamentalist. Weirdly your screenshot doesn’t even have her saying it.”
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