Jeremy Corbyn is in hot water again because of comments and actions from his past.
The UK Labour party leader praised an antisemitic book in 2011 after being asked to write a foreword for the reprint of Imperialism: A Study, written by John Atkinson Hobson that was published in 1902.
The emergence of Corbyn’s foreword has generated consternation, once again, from Jewish groups and leaders in the UK, with the Board of Deputies of British Jews demanding a full explanation from the Labour leader, and Labour MP Margaret Hodge, who is Jewish. stating that the foreword demonstrated Corbyn’s “tolerance of antisemitic views.”
The book states how "international capitalism” is “controlled by men of a single and peculiar race, who have behind them many centuries of financial experience,” referring to the Jews and in particular the Rothschild family.
The Rothschild's are a wealthy and philanthropic Jewish family descending from Mayer Amschel Rothschild, who was a court factor - a Jewish banker who handled the finances of, or lent money to, European, mainly German, royalty and nobility - to the German Landgraves of Hesse-Kassel in the Free City of Frankfurt, which was a major city in the Holy Roman Empire where he established his banking business in the 1760s.
The book goes on to say that this race are "united by the strongest bonds of organisation, always in closest and quickest touch with one as other, situated in the very heart of the business capital of every state, controlled, so far as Europe is concerned, by men of a single and peculiar race, who have behind them many centuries of financial experience, they are in a unique position to control the policy of nations,” again referring to the Jews and the .
Hobbs also wrote in the book that is supported by the control which they exercise over the body of public opinion through the press”.
The matter was brought to the forefront in a Tuesday column by Daniel Finkelstein in The Times
In the foreword, Corbyn described the book as “correct and prescient.” He also referred to it as a “great tome,” which was both “brilliant” and “very controversial at the time."
A Labour Spokesman said in a statement that “similarly to other books of its era, Hobson’s work contains outdated and offensive references and observations, and Jeremy completely rejects the antisemitic elements of his analysis.”
Euan Philipps, spokesman for Labour Against Antisemitism, said in a statement that the latest revelation about Corbyn is “damning."
“A man with his apparent views on Jewish people shouldn’t be allowed anywhere near Downing Street, yet this week across the country Labour supporters will be urging British voters to endorse his party – a move that will only tighten his grip on power," Philipps said. “Decent people will be sickened to see him describing as ‘brilliant’ a book by someone who pushed deeply and clearly racist theories about Jewish people controlling banks, newspapers, governments and wars to further their financial interests. Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership has poisoned the Labour Party.”
He added that “our only hope is that an external organisation such as the Equalities and Human Rights Commission will step in and bring a halt to this increasingly terrifying situation, in the interests of the British public and British democracy.”
The Board of Deputies of British Jews, an umbrella body, demanded a full explanation from Corbyn over a foreword he wrote in 2011 for an antisemitic book which alleged that Jews control global financial and political policy.
The organization described Hobson’s work as “pure and unequivocal racism” for which there could be “no apology,” and went on to list the numerous incidents in which Corbyn has strayed close to or crossed the lines of actual antisemitism.
In an open letter to Corbyn, the Board of Deputies referenced in particular Corbyn’s comment in 2013 that Zionists “don’t understand English irony,” as well as his defense of an antisemitic mural painted in London in 2012 and his presence at a wreath laying ceremony for Palestinian terrorists in 2014, all of which emerged over the last 12 months.
“In just over a year, we have learned that you opposed the removal of a mural by Mear One that contained obvious antisemitic tropes; that you described a group of British Jews as having “no sense of irony” despite “having lived in this country for a very long time”; that you were present - but apparently not involved - in a wreath-laying ceremony for terrorists who murdered Israeli Jews; and that you unsuccessfully attempted to dilute the international definition of antisemitism that was adopted by the Labour Party,” the organization wrote to the Labour leader.
“The British public is entitled to know how you account for these actions and we expect a full explanation,” it concluded.
In comments made to The Jerusalem Post, Hodge said that the foreward demonstrated how Corbyn “has completely ignored blatant antisemitism” and said that “This tolerance of antisemitic views is not the first time the leadership has turned a blind eye.”
Asked whether or not the latest revelations made Corbyn unfit to lead the Labour party, Hodge said that simply that she would continue to fight against antisemitism from within the party, arguing that the Labour Party is bigger than its current leader.
“This trend is deeply troubling and I will continue to do all I can to challenge this hate,” she said.
“The party is much bigger than one person and I will continue to fight for the heart and soul of the Labour Party I joined fifty-six years ago.”
Corbyn has been embroiled in several antisemitic controversies over the years, which has caused major problems within the Labour Party. In recent months, 11 Labour MPs have stepped down because of antisemitism that is plaguing the party.
In 2009, Corbyn called Hamas and Hezbollah his friends and said that Hamas was working to achieve peace and justice, he later apologized for calling them his "friends."
In 2010, Corbyn allegedly hosted a Holocaust Memorial Day meeting at which a Jewish survivor of Auschwitz, Hajo Meyer, who died in 2014, repeatedly made comparisons between Israeli policy and Nazism.
In August 2018, a video emerged of a speech Corbyn gave in 2013 where he ostensibly compared Israel’s control of the West Bank to the Nazi occupation of Europe during World War II.
In 2014, he laid a wreath at a cemetery in Tunisia where Palestinian terrorists who murdered Israeli athletes in Munich in 1972 are buried.
Last year, UK Labour was hit with a major storm over its reluctance adopt the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s working definition of antisemitism fully. Corbyn fought to add a clause that stated it would not be deemed antisemitic to describe Israel and/or the circumstances of Israel’s establishment as racist.