Amazon user claims 'Jewish lobby'

Amazon is continuing to allow posts by a reviewer who has claimed that the "Jewish lobby has a stranglehold over the mass media".

The reviewer, who goes under the name "Ian Millard", has had almost 700 reviews published on Amazon.co.uk since November 2001 and is among Amazon's Top 500 Reviewers.

Most of his contributions remain despite the removal of a number of his reviews following complaints from a reader and inquiries by the JC.

Among the posts taken down by Amazon was one on Tony Benn's Dare to be Daniel in which the reviewer wrote: "His father seems to have supported the entry of Jewish refugees into the UK at that time, an action which frankly I myself regard as folly and the introduction of a voracious cuckoo into the British nest… he seems utterly blind to the Jewish-Zionist lobby."

Reviewing The Israel Lobby and US Foreign Policy by John J Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt, he opined : "Anyone who, like me, has lived in and worked in the USA knows that the Jewish or Zionist or Israeli lobby has a stranglehold over the mass media, professional and political life."

In his review of On Just the Job, by Geoffrey Jackson Morton, he wrote: "It is clear that the Jews corrupted some officials.

"The tales of life in the days of British rule in Palestine, meaning in the days before the Jews ethnically cleansed the country and established 'Israel' are such as are rarely heard of these days."

These two reviews were also removed by Amazon.

A reader, who wanted to remain anonymous, said: "I stumbled across the reviews by accident. Obviously I was horrified. I usually avoid websites with antisemitic content, which are scarily easy to come across accidentally. But to find them casually listed on Amazon was horrifying.

"The claim that the UK media is owned or controlled by Jewish people is a very common, and inaccurate, antisemitic lie - the kind of statement included in the hate-crime-inciting forgery The Protocols of the Elders of Zion, which I am distressed to discover Amazon still offers on its site."

Amazon explains its policy in a notice under the Protocols, saying that it "strongly believes that people have the right to choose their own reading material. Our goal is to support freedom of expression and to provide customers with the broadest selection possible so they can find, discover, and buy any title they might be seeking."

Mark Gardner, of the Community Security Trust, said: "Amazon acknowledges that it sells notorious antisemitic propaganda, so it is no surprise that it also turns a blind eye to antisemitic remarks elsewhere on its site. The company says it is merely against censorship and finds it 'very hurtful… to be accused of racism'. That may well be the case: but Amazon is also a global distributor of antisemitism."

An spokeswoman from Amazon said: "The reviews reported to us by your reader have been removed. Amazon.co.uk has clear customer review guidelines.

"When a customer reports a review that they feel is inappropriate, we investigate, and will remove the review from [the] site if it contravenes these guidelines."

However, 655 reviews by "Ian Millard" remain, including one of Mira Hamermesh's River of Angry Dogs referring to "Jewish ethnic cleansing" and another of Stella Rimington's Open Secret describing the USA as "under the control of the Jewish-Zionist lobby".

Last updated: 5:17pm, October 7 2010