Classic Antisemitism: A Jewish ‘fifth column‘
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The use of the term Fifth Column implies treachery, or a deliberate infiltration or subversion of a process, and is a very old stereotype surrounding Jews, implying that they are more loyal to each other and their own agenda than to the wider community. A number of these conspiratorial forms of antisemitism resemble each other, and this bears a clear similarity to other forms we have illustrated. The underlying theme, of course, is an attempt to blame Jews when things are not as we might wish them to be.
In the first illustration below, for example, it is implied that Jon Lansman is not a loyal bona fide member of the Labour Party, or of its organised left, despite his very long history of activity in it (Lansman was one of the major organisers of Tony Benn’s narrowly unsuccessful bid for the Labour Party’s Deputy Leadership in 1981), but is some sort of Jewish infiltrator, there not to help achieve the socialist society he actually believes in, but to do someone else’s bidding. In the second example, similarly, Jewish Labour Movement vice chair Mike Katz is called a ‘fifth column’ for doing no more than challenging antisemitism in the Labour party.
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