For months, mainstream media in Britain have stepped up their coverage of Jewish anger at Jeremy Corbyn and his supporters in the Labour Party for supposed discrimination and racism. At a time when the British Conservative government is descending into chaos for its failure to propose a coherent Brexit plan, the tears and indignant howls from the Jewish community are but a mechanism to distract the general public from an ever-intensifying political quandary.
That’s not to say that discrimination against Jewish people doesn’t exist within the Labour Party. There’s a long-established conspiracy theory that suggests that Jewish people are the source of political corruption and evil. Some go as far as saying that there’s a Jewish conspiracy to rule the world. This incorrect, simple-minded and lazy theory is not just found in the ranks of the British Labour Party, but across political tendencies around the world. The roots of this unfounded and unscientific theory are found in centuries of inter-European discrimination in which European Jews were said to have been naturally powerful and money hungry due to their prominent role in financial institutions.
This long and complex history of discrimination against Jewish communities is today being mixed up with the fight against Zionism, a project by European Jews to claim, settle and control land in Palestine. Many of the instances which are today being labelled as “anti-Semitic” by Corbyn’s enemies have nothing to do with the unscientific and unfounded conspiracy theories against Jews, but real concerns about the ongoing genocidal Zionist project by Israelis in Palestinian territory. Jewish defenders of Zionism are employing the same unscientific tactics of the conspiracy theorists that discriminate against them to accuse Corbyn and his supporters of “racism.”
The interesting and contradictory thing, from an anti-imperialist perspective, is that the Labour Party has a long history of Zionist-like policies across the world. Even Corbyn and his supporters, considered to be “radicals,” are complicit in the United Kingdom’s ongoing imperialist structures. His supporters who are aware of this defend his muted position on ongoing British economic imperialism as something he cannot get into now because he needs prioritize getting into the seat of power. Sounds familiar, right?
The layered complexity of internal British politics becomes pretty straightforward when observing it from the outside, especially considering the lives and conditions of workers and campesinos that make up the majority of the world’s population. Corbyn and many of his supporters are opposed to overtly violent forms of colonialism, such as Israel’s Zionist occupation of Palestine, yet they see no contradiction in partaking in similarly oppressive forms of imperialism, such as unequal trade relations with former colonies. These unequal trade relations are what allows the U.K. population to live in relative and general material prosperity and what funds public services like the National Health Service, free school meals, job-seeker allowances and so on.
So, while we see through the spectacle of the British establishment and its media in its attempts to fool us into narrowly focusing on a supposed “anti-Jewish” sentiment from Corbyn, we are also well aware of the complicity of the Labour Party, its leaders and its supporters with capitalism as a world system. In this context, we do not have time for Conservatives, Liberals or even “radical” Labour Party members.
We are interested in reaching our hands out to the workers and campesinos in the rest of the world and helping to destroy the capitalist system in its entirety.