Well, perhaps I’m reading a little bit to much into Michael’s latest piece for the Socialist Worker.
But bear with me.
Here’s the key part of Michael Rosen’s argument:
What is curious here is that, in my experience, if people both hate Jews and the state of Israel then they say so. One of the classic forms of antisemitism is to say that “the Jews” are in a “conspiracy” to take over the world, or that they are running the world.
Sometimes, they may say there’s a “Zionist” conspiracy to run the world – but that’s hardly a cunning disguise for a hatred of Jews.
Within this bit of conspiracy theory is the antisemitic idea that “the Jews” or “Israel” or “Zionists” run the US. Again, the people who believe this say so.
Indeed they do.
Take for example, this piece by Abdurrahman Jafar, published earlier this year in the Muslim Weekly, in which he rails against the Prime Minister and the Labour Party’s “deceit” about:
“how Israel has been formulating and directing UK and US foreign policy”
Michael Rosen has hit the nail on the head. Abdurrahman Jafar’s article is a textbook example of the racist conspiracy theories about jews running the world, barely disguised as anti-Zionism.
What makes Michael’s attack on these racists all the more impressive is that he will know that proponents of racism, such as Abdurrahman Jafar, occupy positions of influence within his own political party, RESPECT.
Indeed, Abdurrahman Jafar was RESPECT’s Mayoral Candidate for Newham, served alongside Michael Rosen on the RESPECT National Council, and ran with him on the same slate for the Greater London Authority elections.
It would have been nice if Michael Rosen had named and shamed the racists in his own party. However, RESPECT is a fragile coalition, and I can understand that he might prefer an oblique warning shot across the bows of his party to a frontal assault, which might result in a schism between RESPECT’s racist and anti-racist wings.
Nevertheless, my congratulations to him for raising this difficult subject.