Ex-Conservative party head: Jews planning emigration over Labour

Former leader of British Conservative party says 'many' Jews are making 'contingency plans' over fears that Jeremy Corbyn will take power.

Tal Polon ,

Jeremy Corbyn
Jeremy Corbyn

Andrew Feldman, a former chairman of the Conservative party in Britain, has claimed that many British Jews are “seriously contemplating” leaving the UK, due to the anti-Semitic climate in the British Labour party headed by Jeremy Corbyn and fears that Corbyn will take power.

In an open letter to Corbyn published on Friday in London’s Evening Standard, Feldman wrote:

“I want you to know that many Jewish people in the United Kingdom are seriously contemplating their future here in the event of you becoming Prime Minister. This is because they can see that Labour, a party with a proud tradition of tolerance and inclusiveness, is now a hotbed of feelings against Israel and therefore the Jewish people.”

According to Feldman, “Quietly, discreetly and extremely reluctantly, [British Jews] are making their contingency plans.”

Addressing Corbyn’s rhetoric against “Zionists,” Feldman emphasized, “Anti-Semitism and anti-Zionism are the same thing. They are two sides of the same coin. Anti-Zionism is the belief that the state of Israel should not exist. That it should be dismantled.”

Feldman goes on to assert that Corbyn and some of his supporters in the Labour party, “In associating yourselves with Hamas​ , Hezbollah and the Iranian leadership, they are aligning you with passionate anti-Zionists who pledge the destruction of an entire nation.”

He concludes by calling on Corbyn to take “aggressive steps to erase anti-Zionism from the Labour Party. A failure to do so would be a stain on the history of the Labour Party, and on the history of the United Kingdom.”

The open letter comes amid a series of controversies in recent weeks that have plagued the Labour leader, who has, in the past, called Hamas and Hezbollah his “friends.”

The latest of these controversies involved footage which surfaced on Thursday of Corbyn in 2013, in which he criticizes a group of Zionists for not “understanding English irony,” despite “having lived in this country for a very long time.”

“Zionists … clearly have two problems. One is they don’t want to study history, and secondly, having lived in this country for a very long time, probably all their lives, they don’t understand English irony either. They needed two lessons, which we could perhaps help them with,” Corbyn said in a clip of the speech published by the Daily Mail.

Following uproar over the incident, Corbyn issued a statement on Friday, quoted by the Guardian, in which he claimed that he had used the term Zionist “in the accurate political sense and not as a euphemism for Jewish people.”

“I am now more careful with how I might use the term ‘Zionist’ because a once self-identifying political term has been increasingly hijacked by anti-Semites as code for Jews,” he added.

In recent years, dozens of Labour members have been suspended over anti-Semitic statements, and the party has been criticized for its failure to deal with the anti-Semitism in its ranks.