Palestinian cause must not be pushed aside by the powerful

The latest campaign against Jeremy Corbyn centres around the veteran anti-racist campaigner’s alleged anti-Semitism.

The latest campaign against British Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn centres around the veteran anti-racist campaigner’s alleged anti-Semitism. Among the ongoing claims, Corbyn is denying allegations he laid a wreath at grave the killers of Israeli athletes at the 1972 Munich Olympics.

As well as the latest attack on Corbyn, it is clear the allegations are also aimed at demonising all solidarity with Palestine and support for a genuine peace based on justice.

British left-wing daily The Morning Star responds to the campaign in an abridged editorial below.

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The Daily Mail has form in fashioning fake news to discredit left-wing politics, but it plumbs new depths in linking Jeremy Corbyn with the killers of Israeli athletes at the Munich Olympics.

Both it and Jewish News should be ashamed of their role in exploiting the grief of Ankie Spitzer and Ilana Romano, whose husbands were murdered in the Olympic village in 1972.

No wonder the women feel moved to condemn the Labour leader, but their condemnation should be reserved for cynical politicians and media prepared to distort the truth for base purposes.

Spitzer herself has drawn criticism previously for refusing to express pleasure over assassinations carried out by Mossad in pursuit of Palestinians said to have participated in the Munich terrorist atrocity, insisting she wanted justice not revenge.

Corbyn’s weekly Morning Star column in October 2014 that was quoted by the Mail concentrated on the need to “break with US policy on the Middle East and give full political recognition to Palestine”.

To this end, he welcomed the recent declaration of unity between Palestinian factions, but also the goal of the oppressed Palestinian people and the support given by Tunisians released from jail in the 2011 revolution to the Palestinian cause.

Corbyn reminded Star readers that Tunis had suffered a state terrorist attack in 1986 when Israeli warplanes destroyed the offices of the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO), killing 60 people, many of them Tunisians.

The PLO had moved to Tunis after being driven out of Lebanon after the 1982 mass slaughter of unarmed Palestinian refugees by Phalangist militia, assisted by an Israeli invasion force headed by Ariel Sharon, who later became prime minister.

Corbyn also noted that a conference was being held in Tunisia discussing Gaza’s reconstruction, just weeks after Israel’s Operation Cutting Edge assault had levelled housing and infrastructure, killing more than 2100 Palestinians.

This was just five years after its predecessor Operation Cast Lead killed about 1400 Palestinians, with international condemnation of Israel’s use of white phosphorus in populated areas.

The Israeli widows told Jewish News: “We do not recall a visit of Mr Corbyn to the graves of our murdered fathers, sons and husbands.”

But those who set them up for this shameful media ambush do not spare a thought for the bereaved families of thousands upon thousands of Palestinian men, women and children slaughtered by Israeli state terrorism.

The implication of those who smear Corbyn is that only Israelis can be innocent terrorism victims. The overwhelmingly nameless Palestinians either merit their fate or are reduced to anonymous human collateral damage.

The Labour leader remains today, as he was as a backbencher in 2014, resolute that the Palestinian cause will not be traduced into oblivion by wealthy and powerful circles, including the Daily Mail.

In his Star column, Corbyn commended Labour Friends of Palestine and the Middle East chairman Grahame Morris for proposing a House of Commons motion to recognise the state of Palestine.

“Already, Israeli supporters are saying no motion should be debated until the long-stalled peace talks reach a conclusion,” he warned.

Israeli leaders are content to find one pretext after another to prevent meaningful peace talks from starting, let alone concluding. They use the hiatus to press ahead with illegal colonisation of the West Bank, including East Jerusalem.

Corbyn, unlike too many British politicians, will not stand idly by while this injustice persists and this is the real reason for the bogus anti-Semitism furore exploding around his head.