Israeli soldiers stand next to the body of a Palestinian who moments earlier stabbed a soldier in Hebron.
(photo credit: REUTERS)
The Anti-Defamation League condemned on Thursday recent comments by British Labor MP Gerald Kaufman, who accused Jews of exerting undue influence over the Conservative Party and charged that Israel is fabricating terror attacks as an excuse to kill Palestinians.
Speaking at a pro-Palestinian event on Tuesday, Kaufman said, “It’s Jewish money, Jewish donations to the Conservative Party – as in the general election in May – support from The Jewish Chronicle, all of those things, bias the Conservatives.”
“More than half the stabbing claims were definitely fabricated. The other half, some were true, the others there was no way to tell since they executed Palestinians and no one asked questions," The Jewish Chronicle
quoted him as saying. “They fabricated a stabbing story to justify the killings before they found out they were not Palestinians.”
The ADL called on Jeremy Corbyn, the leader of the Labor Party who recently committed to combating anti-Semitism, to take action in the wake of Kaufman’s remarks.
“Labor leader Jeremy Corbyn should condemn Gerald Kaufman’s rhetoric and take disciplinary action,” said Jonathan A. Greenblatt, ADL CEO. “Corbyn pledged a month ago to stand up against anti-Semitism. Now is his chance."
Kaufman is the longest-serving lawmaker in the House of Commons. In 2011, he apologized for remarking: “Here we are, the Jews again” during a debate about Israel with another Jewish lawmaker who disagreed with his attitude to Israel.
Simon Johnson, the chief executive of Britain’s Jewish Leadership council, said the comments attributed to Kaufman on Tuesday “refer to all the old-fashioned anti-Semitic tropes.” Kaufman, he added, “owes the Jewish community a significant apology.”
A recent ADL poll found that 12 percent of those surveyed in the UK harbor anti-Semitic attitudes, compared to 24 percent in Western Europe.JTA contributed to this report.