Petition update

Jewish Labour Movement and the Labour Friends of Israel – a danger to Labour

Pete Gregson
Edinburgh, SCT, United Kingdom

Oct 7, 2018 — 

Hello signer,

This is a plea for you to warn the NEC of an ongoing danger to the Labour Party from the Jewish Labour Movement (JLM) and the Labour Friends of Israel (LFoI)

If you need convincing of this, read Tony Greenstein’s blog on the Labour Party conference. He accurately sums up what went on re: anti-Semitism (AS) and Palestine. Then read this post, from Jewish Voice for Labour, headed “The Israeli Labor Party and the Zionist Union – friends of ours?”  Finally, this article by Jewish left-wing anti-Zionist writer Robert Cohen “The Jewish establishment’s ‘War Against Corbyn’ risks bringing real antisemitism to Britain”.

Having read these three pieces, I hope you share my unease about the JLM and the LFoI continuing to operate within Labour.

It was on the back of such feelings that I lodged my complaint to Jenny Formby, General Secretary of the Party, pointing out that these two groups had brought the Party into disrepute: I argued they should be expelled, with membership of them being deemed incompatible with being in Labour.

Initially my complaint wasn’t even acknowledged. I chased it up and received, by return, a notice from the Complaints Administrator, saying she’d concluded “that the matter you describe does not amount to a breach of the Labour Party rules and will therefore not be investigated further by the party.”

So these two groups can openly support a racist regime, bring Labour to its knees by declaring the Party “institutionally anti-Semitic”, ensure claims of AS are broadcast against the Party Leader, push for a witch-hunt against any that decry Israel as a racist endeavour, and of whom I have provided televised proof of working through the Israeli Embassy in order to wreck Labour’s chances of winning not just the next general election, but any election.. and the Complaints Administrator concludes there is no case to answer.

If you share my concern that there really is, I invite you to write to Labour’s General Secretary and the NEC, asking them to reconsider the decision to bin my complaint. You can do this simply by clicking here ; embellish the email it generates if you so wish. Be sure to add your name - and if possible, your Party membership number   - or CLP. The more of us that do write in, the greater the chance the NEC will need to act. I’ll let you know how many have done so.


Separately, for those of you who are new signers to this petition, please have a look at my previous updates from the most recent here, then here, here and the oldest here.

Regarding the Police attempt to “ban the Banner” I have registered a complaint with Merseyside Police and received notice from Labour Cllrs at Liverpool City Council that the cops were lying to me when they declared that the landowner had demanded the banner with this Latuff cartoon be banned. As you may know, the Police have signed up to the IHRA. I’ve pointed out to them that they have breached the Human Rights Act of 1998 - Article 10 which protects my right to hold my own opinions and to express them freely without government interference. This includes the right to express my views aloud (for example through public protest and demonstrations) or through: published articles, books or leaflets; television or radio broadcasting; works of art, and the internet and social media. I’ll let you know if and when they apologise.

You may be wondering when Ms Formby will come after all 368 of us who have so far signed this petition. I have been told that, since the full IHRA has not yet been incorporated into the rulebook, we are as yet safe from charges of AS. At present the NEC seeks comments from groups on the subject, before they make rule-book changes; their next meeting is on 27th November. Which gives us more time to get signatures for our petition. Please post a link to it on your FB page, tweet it out – and if you want, give out flyers like this to other Party members. Please email me at if you’d like me to send you some.

In an earlier update, I said I thought we should make all our names public at the point at which I finally submit the petition to the NEC. I have decided this is no longer a good idea and the only folk receiving our names will be those to whom it’s addressed ie Wendy Nichols (the new Chair), Andi Fox (the new vice-chair), Jeremy Corbyn, Tom Watson and John McDonnel, each of whom have been popularly elected to office. I think Wendy would then share it with the other members of the NEC.

Onwards and upwards!

Best wishes

Pete Gregson in Edinburgh

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