The BBC’s Panorama has released a damning hour-long documentary with interviews from for Labour staffers detailing the anti-Semitism within their party and how Corbyn’s leadership team attempted to interfere with the disputes process. The hostility of the party’s leadership team left the head of complaints feeling suicidal.

Labour’s disputes team is supposed to operate independently from the party’s political structures. This includes interference from the leader’s office.

Eight former Labour officials – seven of whom worked in the party’s Complaints and Disputes Department, one of whom was the head of the department – spoke to Panorama about their experiences of dealing with anti-Semitism cases.

They claim:

  • The leader’s office was “angry and obstructive” when it came to the issue
  • Officials brought in by Ms Formby “overruled” disciplinary decisions and “downgraded” punishments to a “slap on the wrist”
  • Mr Milne laughed when advised by a long-serving party official about what Mr Corbyn should do to tackle anti-Semitism in the party
  • On one occasion, Jeremy Corbyn’s office ordered batches of anti-Semitism complaints to be brought to his Commons office for processing by his aides

In emails leaked to Panorama, Seumas Milne, one of Jeremy Corbyn’s closest aides, told officials the party was “muddling up political disputes with racism” and must review processes.

And General Secretary Jennie Formby attempted to interfere in who sat on a panel examining a high-profile case.

Labour said there was no interference and that former staff making the claims were “disaffected”.

However, all the staffers who spoke to Panorama all explained how they felt treated by the leadership was abusive. One had a nervous breakdown. Another said he was suicidal.

The party’s deputy leader Tom Watson said he was “shocked, chilled and appalled” by the allegations and the party had “serious questions” to answer.

And other MPs commended the courage of those who had spoken out, Ruth Smeeth describing their testimony as “heartbreaking”.

It is important to note that Labour’s statements on this issue show no sign of acknowledgement for anti-Semitism within the party, instead they attack those making the allegations and try to smear them.

This is not surprising as the Labour leadership, including their aides, are made up of lifelong anti-Israel campaigners who do not see being anti-Zionist as being anti-Semitic. Corbyn himself espouses hatred towards Israel and does not see opposition to the existence of the world’s only Jewish state as racist.

Despite this damning report, it is highly unlikely that Labour will change its way under the current leadership. There is little hope for those trying to reform the party until they rid the party of the anti-Semites, and that starts with members of the leadership team.

If you would like to watch the full Panorama documentary, you can do so on the BBC’s iPlayer service. Click here.

For those not wanting to watch the full hour-long documentary or who don’t have access to BBC’s iPlayer, please see a shortened version on YouTube.

Related Articles:

Macron calls for law change after anti-Semitic murderer won’t stand trial

French President Emmanuel Macron is calling for a change in his country's legal system after it was ruled an anti-Semitic killer will not stand trial because he had taken cannabis before...

Jewish graves smashed: ‘A very sad day for Belfast’

Belfast police are investigating an anti-Semitic hate crime after ten Jewish graves were smashed and toppled. The incident took place last Thursday evening at the City...

Neo-Nazi graffiti daubed on Tasmania’s parliament building

Neo-Nazi graffiti was daubed last weekend on the Parliament House of the Australian state of Tasmania in Hobart, drawing condemnation from the Anti-Defamation Commission...

Netherlands: Football fans chant ‘Hamas, Hamas, Jews to the gas’ before facing Ajax

A group of Dutch football fans have been condemned by their team's director after they chanted an anti-Semitic chant. Ajax fans are affectionately referred to as "Jews" by...

France: Delivery man who refused service to Jews deported to Algeria

A 19-year-old immigrant from Algeria, who was jailed for refusing to deliver food to Jews, has been deported after it was discovered he was living France in illegally. Dhia Edine D. was...