Friday 17 March 2023

His Words Are Damning

Sadly without naming the man who used the Angry Black Woman trope against Diane Abbott, but do look it up, Ricky D. Hale writes:

When the Labour leadership commissioned Martin Forde QC to investigate the Labour leaks, it seems they handpicked the barrister of 38 years because they thought he was one of their own and hoped the report would be a whitewash, but they did not reckon on Martin Forde QC having integrity and telling the truth.

As a result, the Forde Report was swept under the carpet when it said what the party leadership didn’t want it to say, just like the leaked internal report was swept under the carpet. Martin Forde QC is clearly unhappy with the response of the Labour Party and has spoken to Al Jazeera about his frustrations. Although he remains respectful throughout the programme, his words are damning.

For example, Forde spoke of a “hierarchy of racism” within the Labour Party and said it had issues with its approach to racial discrimination. He said there was a clear perception that “Anti-black racism, Islamophobia isn’t taken as seriously as anti-Semitism.”

Forde spoke of black and Asian councillors who had been subjected to “deliberately timed” disciplinary action which prevented them from participating in selection processes. In other words, to stop them from standing for election.

If you were angry about Labour anti-Semitism under Corbyn, you can’t shrug your shoulders now because this kind of systemic racism was never present during the Corbyn years. At no point was Corbyn blocking Jews from becoming Labour candidates, but Starmer’s Labour did this to black and Asian applicants. It’s outrageous and shows the party is more institutionally racist today than it was accused of being from 2015-2019.

Forde said that Al Jazeera had access to more information than he was given by the Labour Party during his investigation, but what he did have access to was damning, such as Whatsapp messages abusive of Diane Abbott.

“She literally makes me sick.”

“Abbott is truly repulsive.”

Forde said he saw Whatsapp messages that there was no doubt were racist towards Abbott and talked about her with a “visceral disgust”. Abbott was abused by Labour staff so badly that she was driven to tears and hid in a toilet cubicle while they laughed at her, and if you find this acceptable, I’m sorry to say you are not a good person.

Research shows Diane Abbott has received ten times more online abuse than any other female MP and you would think this would prompt the Labour leadership to offer words of support, but you would be wrong. As far as I’m aware, nobody has been disciplined for the abuse levelled at Diane Abbott to this day. It seems the leadership simply does not care.

Concerningly, Forde said he has not spoken to anyone in the party machinery about his report and they have not taken any of his 165 recommendations on board. He said the party needed to have “serious debates” about how it handles racism.

Just consider the way the media spent four years attacking Corbyn’s Labour over its handling of anti-Semitism and now consider how the British media has shown no interest in the Forde Report. If you think the furore during the Corbyn years was due to concerns about racism, rather than an attempt to stop a socialist from becoming prime minister, I truly pity you.

Make no mistake, if the Forde Report was damning of Jeremy Corbyn, it would have been on the front pages of every newspaper and given wall-to-wall coverage on every TV channel. Yet Forde says he was approached by only one media outlet and they admitted they had not even bothered to read the report. He suggested they should read it and they never got back to him!

Even worse, Forde says he received pressure from the BBC to alter his report, including emails from John Ware of Panorama that he described as like “action before litigation”.

Ware sent an email to Forde which ended as follows:

Your report has done significant damage to my reputation and to that of the corporation for journalistic integrity. As a consequence of your report, I have received a great deal of abuse and unwarranted criticism from supporters of Mr Corbyn, so I hope you understand why I wish to put the record straight.

May I ask you to respond by 4pm tomorrow 11 October.

This letter is CC’d to the editor of The Jewish Chronicle Jake Wallis Simons.

Your sincerely


Forde says he was taken aback by the tone of the email and I’m not surprised, given Ware CC’d the editor of The Jewish Chronicle. This is a newspaper that has written multiple hit pieces against people from the left and lost several libel cases as a result, including against Marc Wadsworth who they accused of being part of a group targeting Jewish activists. This accusation was totally false.

You can read The Jewish Chronicle’s apology here.

Forde could’ve been forgiven for fearing he might have been the next victim of a Jewish Chronicle hit piece, but he was not to be intimidated. He said Panorama’s use of internal Labour Party emails was “entirely misleading”. He also suggested he had a “fuller picture” than Ware because he interviewed participants in the Panorama programme, but he also interviewed those who had not participated from the “alternative faction”, i.e. those accused of anti-Semitism.

To give you an idea of how misleading the Bafta-nominated Panorama show was, it claimed an email from Seumas Milne revealed interference from the leadership in the party’s internal disciplinary process.

Panorama highlighted two tiny snippets:

… we need to review….

…muddling up political disputes with racism.

As Forde pointed out, these tiny snippets are sorely lacking in context. James Schneider shared a longer excerpt to provide that context:

…the member is a Jewish activist, the son of a holocaust survivor … if we’re more than very occasionally using disciplinary action against Jewish members for anti-Semitism, something’s going wrong, and we’re muddling up political disputes with racism.

Quite apart from this specific case, I think going forwards, we need to review where and how we’re drawing the line if we’re going to have clear and defensible processes…

Compare the John Ware excerpt shown on Panorama with the James Schneider excerpt shown to Al Jazeera. The first excerpt suggests Milne was dismissing racism as “political disputes” whereas the second excerpt shows he was concerned that disciplining too many Jews could be considered anti-Semitic. In other words, Milne’s intentions were the exact opposite of how they were characterised by Panorama.

Forde said of the quotes: “the filleting meant the context was lost and a more sinister interpretation could be placed upon that email than was ever intended”.

It took real courage for Forde to refuse to alter the wording of his report and he diplomatically suggested the filleting was not intentional, but that it was “misleading”. In other words, he was being polite, but he was not backing down.

Forde discussed Ben Westerman, a Jewish Labour Party investigator who described an interview he had conducted. Westerman claimed that at the end of the interview, he was repeatedly asked, “Where are you from?” and when he said, “I’m not prepared to discuss this,” he was asked, “Are you from Israel?” He claimed he was assumed to be “in cahoots with the Israeli government”.

However, Forde pointed out this might not have been an accurate representation of what took place.

Rica Bird, the woman who was interviewed, was also Jewish, yet this was not mentioned in the Panorama programme. Bird insists Westerman’s accusation was an “absolute lie” and fortunately she had recorded the conversation as evidence.

The recording shows Bird saying, “I’m just curious, what branch are you in?” to which Westerman replied, “I don’t think that’s relevant,” and Bird replied “Oh, okay,” and left it at that.

Ware insists that after the recording ended, Bird turned around as she was leaving the room and asked if Westerman was from Israel. I’ll let you decide if this claim seems plausible.

Forde certainly seemed sceptical because he listened to the recording after hearing the accusation of anti-Semitism and said “to my ear, it revealed nothing of the sort.”

Now if Ware was interested in making a balanced documentary, surely he would have presented both sides of the argument so his audience could decide who they believed. Either he wasn’t interested in creating a full picture or he was not as thorough as he should’ve been - neither possibility would be acceptable, given the serious nature of the accusations.

The media would have you believe the Labour Party was overrun by left-wingers who were constantly harassing Jewish members, but the evidence suggests the reverse was true. The Labour files showed that Jews who supported Corbyn and other left-wingers were actually the victims of severe abuse, some of which was captured on camera. It would appear Starmer’s Labour finds this kind of anti-Semitism acceptable because they’ve expelled some of the victims, including Naomi Wimbourne-Idrissi who was a Labour member for decades.

The Forde Report recommended that Jews who supported Corbyn and don’t support Israel should be involved in the party’s anti-Semitism training, which he described as “didactic, top-down and one-dimensional”. Instead, left-wing Jews are getting purged from the party. This in itself is surely anti-Semitic, it’s the “wrong kind of Jew” trope.

Forde pointed out that in the same way not all black people are homogeneous, neither are all Jewish people. He also pointed out the Labour Party needs to understand it’s not automatically anti-Semitic to express disapproval of the policies of the Israeli government. He said that because Labour is a broad church, it would be desirable to have a “span of views” on the training course.

I commend Martin Forde QC for his moral courage and common sense, but unfortunately, his words were always going to fall on deaf ears because Starmer was only interested in hearing what he wanted to hear.

Many people will feel vindicated by Forde’s words because he has confirmed what many well-meaning people had claimed, only to be dismissed as anti-Semites.

We said Labour has a hierarchy of racism, only to be accused of pitting one form of racism against another. We said Labour was ignoring racism against black and Muslim MPs, councillors and party members, and we were dismissed as cranks. We said left-wing Jews were being purged from the Labour Party and we were accused of supporting anti-Semites. None of the things they said about us were true.

Now there were, of course, anti-Semites in the Labour Party during the Corbyn era, but Jennie Formby worked hard to expel them after Labour staff sat on complaints to embarrass Corbyn under the tenure of her predecessor Iain McNichol, as confirmed in the Forde Report.

The narrative was that an anti-Semitic left-wing leadership was protecting anti-Semites and forcing Jews out of the Labour Party. Now we know that characterisation is actually much more reflective of the Labour right.

And this is not just some petty internal squabble as some are now outrageously suggesting. It hurts. It really hurts.

Many of us gave our heart and soul to the Labour Party, only to be told we’re something we’re not. One woman died of a stroke shortly after being expelled. Former Labour staffer Halima Khan says Labour officials laughed and one said, “Look, we’re anti-Semite killers now!”

These people did not care who they hurt. They did not care that they destroyed hope for millions of people who just wanted a better country for everyone.

I will never forgive them.


  1. As with Tony Blair's efforts to conceal his past membership of CND, the real leftwing past of Keir Starmer (from support for environmentalist zealots to republicanism) is being covered up in his efforts to win an election in a conservative country that he knows doesn't vote for the Far Left.

    But a viral thread on Twitter points out: "In 2003, the Labour Party was taken to court by a leftwing lawyer who demanded illegal immigrants get full benefits. He won the case and this laid the ground for today's scandal of £7 million a day for illegal migrant hotels and benefits.

    That lawyer was Keir Starmer."

    1. He got a brief off the cab rank and won the case. So what?

      If Britain does not vote for what you term "the Far Left", then how come you think that everyone who has won a General Election in the last 30 years could be so described?

      Starmer's Pabloism, which is indeed a species of Trotskyism, is an academic writeup of what most middle-class people think. More is the pity, but there you are.

      Although the terminology would have raised eyebrows, that was just as true of Gramscian Eurocommunism in the Blair years. Blair was entirely representative of Middle England. That was why he won. And that was the problem.