Jewish Socialist versus the EUMC – Bob From Brockley

A cross-post by Bob From Brockley:

Jewish Socialist versus the EUMC

The new issue of the reliably excellent Jewish Socialist magazine popped onto my doormat this morning and I browsed it as I ate my lunch. As always, I look forward to reading it from cover to cover, probably the only publication I can say that of.

The very first page, however, includes a short piece on Greens Engage which radically misrepresents the group. It is based on an interview with Joseph Healy, who claims, among other things that “Greens Engage have been using the controversial EUMC definition of antisemitism to make accusations against those in the Green party supporting justice for the Palestinians.” In fact, Greens Engage members put forward a motion to a 2008 conference agreeing that “The EU’s working definition of antisemitism shall be considered when determining what counts as antisemitism.” (The same motion, incidentally, was unequivocally for a Palestinian right of self-determination, which seems like a good definition of supporting justice for Palestinians.) They did not, however, at this point, make any accusations about anyone based on the EUMC definition, and the definition only cropped up again some time later when a Green Party internal committee innocently stumbled upon it in drafting policy on antisemitic language, which then blew up into a new furore, as we know. I may be wrong, but I am not aware of any time that GE have made an accusation against anyone which quotes the definition.

There is also, on p.21, an article by Julia Bard on “the agendas being served by the Community Security Trust“. This again (inaccurately I believe) invokes the EUMC WD: “Their definition of the threat is based on the discredited and highly contentious EU Monitoring Committee definition of antisemitism [which it isn’t] and their equally contentious response to it [which means I have no idea what].” The main thrust of the argument, however, follows Geoffrey Alderman (a former friend of Jewish Socialist and now somewhat to the right of them) in seeing the CST as unrepresentative and adds that its funding structure echoes Cameron’s Big Society, an interesting but not to me convincing point.

Anyways, apart from that, looks good. There’s obituaries of Jayaben Desai, Miriam Karlin and Juliano Mer Khamis, a short piece on Tarabut, Moshe Machover, Afif Safieh and Amanda Sebetyen on the Arab spring, David Rosenberg on multiculturalism, the usual Spanish Civil war stuff, Ilana Cravitz on klezmer, Mike Gerber on boxing, Paul Collins on Victor Gollancz, J David Simons on Jewish Glasgow, David Landau on AFA (I will return to that one here when I’ve digested it), some muckraking on the hideous Israel Shamir, and lots more.

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