FIRST, AN APOLOGY
At times, like any person, group or lizard cabal, we do get things wrong. We made one serious error in our Gallery of Antisemitism, and also drafted one example poorly, which made it look as if our principal target was David Graeber, which it wasn’t. We have edited both and donated to Donald Trump’s retirement fund as an act of Teshuva.We also put out a post yesterday which was not perhaps up to the standards we try to set ourselves. We have deleted that and sincerely apologise for all of these mistakes. We’d like to think that, the great majority of the time, we play a worthwhile role in assisting in the understanding of, and combatting of, antisemitism and other forms of racism. However, we do appreciate all you people who’ve recently started judging us based on one or two posts out of the many thousands we’ve written.
WHO ARE WE, AND WHO AREN’T WE?
Some people have observed these mistakes, and have gone way beyond criticising us for them, almost as if they have bad intent. A few have come up with some extraordinarily silly and in some cases malicious theories about who runs this page. Perhaps we could disabuse them of some these odd notions.
1 ) The Facebook page was founded in 2018 by Barnaby Marder with one other former member of Red Labour who left very soon after. Several admins have come and gone since then, but some have stayed throughout. We started with 5 admins, we now have 10. Of these admins, 7 are currently members of the Labour Party and 3 are not. Nobody is a member of any other political party although some of us are Monster Raving Loonies.
2) Politically the page critically supported the leadership of Jeremy Corbyn at first. As time went on, we became more and more critical of his leadership for reasons connected to antisemitism in the party and the fact that Jeremy didn’t come to our sponsored Kiddish at Kinloss Shul. We have endorsed Labour in every election since the page was formed, but our recommendation of a Labour vote in December 2019 was extremely nuanced.
3 ) The great majority of our members and admins are politically aligned with the left-wing of the Labour Party. In terms of the overall membership of our groups, we range from very slightly left of centre within Labour Party opinion to the far left – some of us make Corbyn look like a Blairite. We have no supporters of Labour’s right-wing factions, Progress or Labour First amongst our members, or at least no-one will admit it.
4 ) At various times we have been accused of being a front for JLM, Tony Blair, Brian (probably his real name) Netanyahu, Open Labour, the AWL and JVL. They can’t ALL be right! We do have members of JLM, Open Labour, Momentum and the AWL in our ranks. Although the latter is restricted to a quota of 2% so as not to upset our friends in the SWP. None of our members is a member of JVL, though we do have some former members, who, by way of punishment, have been made to subscribe to the Jewish Chronicle.
5 ) Even more amusing has been the array of cack-handed attempts to tell everyone who runs SAAS. The best of the lot was that three people run it, Jon Lansman and two others who are known to be broigus with each other. Wild speculation continued long after Barnaby and Dan Jacobs were outed as SAAS admins. Here’s a suggestion for you: read the Gallery of Antisemitism, and see the credits near the beginning. Then you’ll get a better idea, although 2 of the comrades who have been credited for it are not admins, we are just very grateful for their help. In some CLPs and other political settings, comrades both Jewish and non-Jewish are being subject to huge abuse, because they don’t like antisemitism; therefore not every single one of our admins is yet willing to be identified. Please respect this.
6 ) Finally, we did note that some naughty folk said we are not socialists but liberals. Just to make sure, we conducted a thorough internal investigation. It turns out that we stand for a socialist transformation of society and an end to the misery of capitalism. The fact that we might from time to time criticise certain figures on the left does not make us liberals! We really, genuinely aren’t. We are left-wing, we are socialists, and we are proud of it. We just like calling out antisemitism.
We look forward to reading about who next we are supposed to be a front for, who else runs the group and how many children we’ve blood sacrificed. Keep it coming. Or not.
Photo: Keith moderates a session between Dan Corbyn and Barnaby Blair at Limmud Festival 2019.