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I spoke at a rally against Anti-Semitism outside the Labour Party headquarters in Victoria last month. I hadn’t intended to spend my only day off from the theatre this way but when I saw the huge march against Israel, mounted in days, to oppose the carefully-staged uprisings in Gaza over Passover, I knew I had to stand up and be counted. Twenty-nine people,  including known Hamas terrorists were, sadly, killed in Gaza. It has taken seven years for Assad to slaughter tens of thousands of his own people, and 24 hours the day before I spoke to chemically gas 70 women and children, but to organise a protest against this genocide held no interest for our busy activists for the Palestinians. As ever, the heinous crimes committed against humanity in the rest of the world pale into insignificance for those who wish to marginalise and destroy the Jewish state.

I certainly didn’t expect to be a speaker. That happened because I had submitted my take on Jeremy Corbyn’s “apology” following his attendance at an alternative Passover Seder but the newspapers all pleaded overkill. My hackles were taut; my head was teeming with insult and injustice. In other words I had the perfect mindset for a rallying speech at an organised protest.

I said that the name Jewdas has a horrible ring to it and asked whether anyone, let alone the leader of Her Majesty’s Opposition, should attend a Seder, on the wrong night in the Jewish calendar, with radicals who call themselves by an offensive name, whose followers refer to Israel as “a steaming pile of sewage” and believe that Jews should only live in the Diaspora. (I’ll never understand why the Jews must be content with the Diaspora but the Palestinians must have the right to return.) After a week when the Labour Party has been shown repeatedly to encourage, or certainly not discourage, anti-Semitism, would you break matzos with Jewdas?? Would you smile through cries of “F**k royalty! F**k the Army” during a religious ceremony?

No, me neither.

Yet this is precisely where Comrade Corbyn chose to spend his night off. Then, knowing the accusation that has been levelled at him for supping with Jewish anti-Zionists, he said he was delighted to speak to young Londoners and to learn more about Passover. Good luck with the learning, Jezza; you might have learned more about hating the outcast by watching Wes Anderson’s Isle of Dogs at the Screen on Islington Green.

How much more proof do the Labour Party and the country need to hear than this cynical stunt, on top of the 2,000 examples of online racism — yes, let’s call it that because that is what it is — uncovered by the Sunday Times and the baiting and trolling of the Jewish Labour MPs Luciana Berger and Louise Ellman because of their heritage? Would Corbyn not have been better advised to follow up his apologetic words with a single deed of apology, like sacking Ken Livingstone, rather than deliberately staging a controversial gesture to all sides of Judaism?
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