A dozen British Holocaust survivors have published an open letter in The Sunday Times arguing that Jeremy Corbyn has “bent over backwards to help Jews”.
The letter was prompted by the recent announcement from the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) that it would investigate the Labour Party’s approach to antisemitism.
The signatories, many of whom are Orthodox Jews, say they “do not believe that any prejudice against or hostility towards Jews is being perpetrated by Labour,” adding: “If any exists within the Party, it is minimal and no more prevalent than in any other political party.”
Among those who signed the letter were Hungary-born Avigdor Langberg, who later founded Kay’s Supermarket and Deli on Golders Green Road, and Czech-born Leah Stern, who was liberated from Bergen-Belsen by the British after having also survived Auschwitz-Birkenau.
Defending the Party’s leader, they said “Jeremy Corbyn has in fact bent over backwards to help Jewish people” before chastising the Jewish communal leadership for having a political agenda.
“Media attention on the Labour Party in general, and on Corbyn in particular, is being generated by anti-Labour and anti-Corbyn mischief makers, who unfortunately are over-represented within the so-called Anglo-Jewish leadership, a leadership whose legitimacy is not recognised by mainstream Charedi Jews,” they wrote.
“The real current threat to Jewish life in the UK is the anti-religious education policies being relentlessly pursued by [national schools inspectorate] Ofsted.
“To our chagrin, they receive full backing and support from these so-called Anglo-Jewish leadership organisations, together with certain secularist groups, which display no compunction in discriminating against people with religious beliefs.”