Israeli politician boasts about role in Corbyn’s downfall

Ayelet Nahmias-Verbin addressing Gilad Erdan at an anti-BDS conference. (NGO Monitor/YouTube)

An Israeli politician has claimed responsibility for her part in the political downfall of former UK Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn.

“Bye bye @jeremycorbyn,” Ayelet Nahmias-Verbin posted on Twitter, “Justice is done. Proud I was part of this puzzle.”

Nahmias-Verbin is a former member of Israel’s parliament for the Labor Party. She made the claim the day after Corbyn was suspended as a member of UK Labour last week.

She posted it along with a video of herself addressing a 2018 Labour Friends of Israel meeting in the UK.

She appeared alongside then UK Labour deputy leader Tom Watson and then Israeli ambassador Mark Regev.

In her address, she called alleged anti-Semitism in Labour under Corbyn “deeply disturbing” and “shocking.” In a script closely followed by the UK’s pro-Israel lobby, she asked, “what kind of leadership have you shown to root this out?”

She also denounced Corbyn for “arguing” over the Israel-lobby backed IHRA definition of anti-Semitism, which the British Labour Party was under pressure to adopt.

The definition has been widely denounced as politically motivated and anti-Palestinian, because it conflates criticism of Israel and its political ideology Zionism, on the one hand, with bigotry against Jews, on the other.

The vast majority of the UK’s universities have refused to adopt the definition, despite intense Conservative government pressure.

Israeli racism

Despite Nahmias-Verbin’s claims to be concerned about racism in British political parties, she has openly defended far-right Israeli racism.

While she was in the UK attending the 2018 Labour Party conference, she was asked by a radio talk show host if she agreed with the many people who consider her country’s prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, to be a racist.

Nahmias-Verbin replied: “I do not believe that he is racist. You can’t really be prime minister of Israel and be racist.”

Netanyahu is one of Israel’s most extreme racists and certainly the most powerful. As US Senator Bernie Sanders put it earlier this year, the Israeli prime minister is “a reactionary racist.”

During Israel’s 2015 election campaign, Netanyahu infamously incited his followers against Palestinians with Israeli citizenship.

“The right-wing government is in danger,” Netanyahu exhorted his followers. “Arabs are advancing on the ballot boxes in droves.”

In the same 2018 radio interview, Nahmias-Verbin declared that Corbyn – a lifelong campaigner against racism – “is an anti-Semite himself.”

She asserted that British Jews would feel “unsafe” if Corbyn became prime minister and accused him of sharing “values” with “terrorists” and “inhumane people.”

It was a blunt intervention in British politics by a foreign politician and a direct attack on the leader of the UK’s official opposition.

Israel’s campaign against Corbyn

Nahmias-Verbin’s attacks on Corbyn came amid a concerted effort by the state of Israel to overthrow Corbyn – the potential future prime minister of an important foreign ally.

Israel and its overseas lobby worked tirelessly to operate a campaign against Corbyn.

It succeeded at the end of 2019 with Corbyn’s loss in the UK general election, leading to his resignation as party leader.

Israel lobby groups at the time claimed responsibility for the election loss, with one even claiming to have “slaughtered” Corbyn, “the beast.”

The Israeli Labor party was mobilized to help in the attack.

A few months before Nahmias-Verbin made her verbal assault on Corbyn at the Labour Friends of Israel event, her party leader, the supposed “centerist” Avi Gabbay, declared that he was suspending all relations with the UK Labour leader.

This came days after Corbyn had condemned an Israeli army massacre of unarmed Palestinian protesters on the boundary with Gaza as “an outrage.”

Gabbay responded that he was cutting ties over Corbyn’s “hatred of the policies of the government of the state of Israel.”

In line with the years-long smear campaign, Gabbay also accused Corbyn of “hostility that you have shown to the Jewish community” in the UK.

Last week, Isaac Herzog, another former leader of the Israeli Labor party, also welcomed the purging of Corbyn. Herzog called it “an important milestone for the whole world in taking anti-Semitism out of the political game.”

Fighting BDS

At a 2016 conference held in the Knesset to fight the Palestinian-led boycott, divestment and sanctions movement, Nahmias-Verbin thanked Israeli minister Gilad Erdan for his efforts to undermine the boycott globally.

Erdan at the time led the Ministry of Strategic Affairs, Israel’s multi-million-dollar semi-covert global sabotage agency charged with waging war against BDS.

“The Israeli Ministry for Strategic Affairs will bring to Israel delegations from abroad in order to expose the truth about the state of Israel,” Erdan told the same conference. “We must go from defense to offense.”

It appears that dispatching Nahmias-Verbin to the UK was also part of the ministry’s effort against Jeremy Corbyn.

At the 2016 conference, Nahmias-Verbin sat next to Jewish extremist Yehuda Glick. (NGO Monitor/YouTube)

The video of Nahmias-Verbin’s remarks to Erdan shows that she was seated next to Likud activist Yehuda Glick – one of Israel’s most dangerous extremists.

Glick is a leader of the Israeli-government backed Jewish extremist movement that aims to destroy the al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem and replace it with a Jewish temple.

Updates

After publication of this article, Nahmias-Verbin responded on Twitter by doubling down on her smears and saying she was “proud” or her role in the downfall of Jeremy Corbyn – although now downplaying it as “tiny.”

She also said she was “proud” of lobby groups Labour Friends of Israel and the Board of Deputies of British Jews (the latter group had not initially been mentioned in this article).

On 6 November, she replied again to further downplay her role as “tiny if at all,” saying it was done by supporting Labour Friends of Israel and other lawmakers.

David Sheen contributed research.

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The #Apartheid policies, breaches of #InternationalLaw & #HumanRightsAbuses of #Israel MUST be opposed at every opportunity. The religion of those committing these offences is irrelevant. It is our moral responsibility to stand against such abuses wherever we find them, whatever nation, group or individual is responsible. No-one is above the law! Opposing Israel's goverment is NOT antisemetism, its morally the right thing to do in light of their policies and actions. #IStandWithJeremyCorbyn AGAINST #Antisemetism, #Islamaphobia and all other forms of hate. Although I must confess to hating #Capitalists & #Capitalism but thats a debate for another time and place.

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As do I. Jeremy Corbyn is one of the most respected men in the world. He has stood for the Palestinians for decades, and has never been anti-Semitic in any way. The Israelis all know this and vilify him because of their own racism and hidden shame.

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Verbin the racist who had previously called Corbyn antiSemitic was greeted as a welcome guest to the LP conference, yet Miko Peled the Jewish Israeli writer a peace campaigner was denied entry. This shows just how deeply the Zionist racists are embedded in the British Labour Party.

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Labour is a racist Party, beyond question. Not anti-Semitic. Not among its grassroots, but in its leadership. Hardly new. In 1945 Labour's policy was forced transfer of Palestinians, ethnic cleansing as we call it today.Richard Crossman, speaking in the mid-1940s said: "Zionism after all is merely the attempt by the European Jew to build his national life on the soil of Palestine in much the same way as the American settler developed the West. So the American will give the Jewish settler the benefit of the doubt, and regard the Arab as the aboriginal who must go down before the march of progress." What he means by "in much the same way" is genocide. Here is the British Labour Party at what is usually thought of as the pinnacle of its achievement, embracing genocide and falling in with the racist fantasies of colonialism. Corbyn has always been an outrider in the Labour Party because he renounces racism and colonialism. His Party has a sordid foreign policy record, as far back as the Boer War, as recently as the Iraq War and right up to date in its refusal to condemn outright the Israeli grab for the West Bank. In this Stalinist attempt to airbrush Corbyn from Labour history, the Party is defining itself as racist, reactionary and retrospective. Hence Starmer's pitiful dubbing the BLM movement a "moment". In other words: "Why don't these sooty-faced people just know their place, get off the streets and let white men in suits like me get on with running the world." Labour will never revive as a socialist Party. It is committed to its right-of-centre philosophy. As Starmer says, it's a matter of values. His values are right-wing. What happened to Labour in Scotland needs to happen in England and Wales. All that's needed is a serious movement to the left of Labour. That can come if a major union peels from Labour and puts up the money. Why should unions support a "Party of business" as Starmer calls it. A Party of Labour is what we need, that's not the LP.

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Those fools who say Jeremy Corbyn is Anti Semitic are confused. These people complain about anti Semitism. Did anyone swear at you harass you,? Belittle you. What actual discrimination did you receive ? Or did make you aware of Israel's awful treatment of the Palestinians. Hitler & Mussolini was Anti Semitic. I doubt Jeremy Corbyn is any of those characters.
Carry on with warped twisted ways people don't listen to those who cry wolf !!!!!!

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Asa Winstanley

Asa Winstanley's picture

Asa Winstanley is an investigative journalist and associate editor with The Electronic Intifada. He lives in London. Biography here.