Anti-Semitism in the left: an open letter to the ISG – National Campaign Against Fees and Cuts

One of the things that’s kept me going during periods of sustained antisemitism in and from various left-wing organisations I’ve been involved with was the knowledge that as well as Jewish support I also had the support of members who weren’t Jewish. I hope that goes for the Jewish members of the National Campaign Against Fees and Cuts who published Anti-Semitism in the left: an open letter to the ISG (International Socialist Group) today. It was a response to the posting of an antisemitic cartoon on the Facebook page of the ISG organ Communiqué featuring a demonic Jew deceitfully claiming victimhood in order to justify persecuting Palestinians.

Anitsemitic cartoon  posted by ISG, with notes

Antisemitic cartoon posted by ISG. Annotations are mine.

Shortly after being posted it was taken down with an apology which avoided using the word ‘antisemitism’ or taking the necessary steps to explain why the cartoon was “inappropriate”. There was also a comically unconvincing claim that the cartoon had been posted by “members of the public unaligned with Communiqué” who had got their hands on Aidan Turner’s account while the his back was turned, a Communiqué admin’s account and a hollow reiteration that “that there is not and will never be any space in the Communiqué project for racism of any variety”.

More accurately, whether or not Communiqué flirts with antisemitism depends on whether enough people notice it and object.

To look on the bright side, antisemitism remains something that few people on the left are proud to own up to. For now.

Update – traffic from Sarah at Harry’s Place has sharpened me up. The apology only says that it’s Communiqué’s Facebook account that was compromised. Not sure who the Facebooker Aidan Turner is.

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