Greens vote not to tolerate antisemitism

By Anshel Pfeffer, September 10, 2008

Delegates at this year's Green Party conference have backed a motion stating that the party did not tolerate or endorse antisemitism, but only after radically cutting the original resolution.

The original motion said that antisemitism also included elements of anti-Zionism and called for the Greens to adopt the European Union's definition of antisemitism.

It also stated that Israel's right to exist was consistent with the Green Party's policies and called upon all party members to condemn antisemitism, when forced to share a platform with other speakers who express antisemitic views.

The motion caused some opposition within the party, which this week voted to appoint MEP Caroline Lucas as its first leader. Ms Lucas has in the past been a staunch supporter of the boycott of trade with Israel and chaired a session at a Palestine Solidarity Campaign congress.

An opposing motion was tabled saying that the Greens have "engaged" with groups supporting the Palestinians and that Greens dissociate themselves from these groups' wider agenda "specifically if it reflects any implication of antisemitism".

The conference finally pared down the original motion. Councillor Chris Fox, one of those behind it, said: "It's a very small progress, but it's important that at least for the first time there is something on antisemitism in the Greens' policies."

The conference also featured a fringe event on "Anti-Zionism - a Jewish perspective." This was organised by Green Left and the PSC. A second fringe meeting discussed whether "criticism of Israel can be antisemitic." 


Last updated: 5:21pm, September 11 2008



Wed, 09/10/2008 - 12:58

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This piece is a bit misleading - I was there and involved, so I can explain. Pfeffer writes: "The original motion said that antisemitism also included elements of anti-Zionism and called for the Greens to adopt the European Union's definition of antisemitism." It didn't - it was very careful not to attempt to restrict or define. It said: "Antisemitic remarks and behaviours may include a variety of imagery, caricatures and references to global Zionist conspiracies etc." and "The EU's working definition of antisemitism shall be considered when determining what counts as antisemitism."


Thu, 09/11/2008 - 10:03

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Caroline Lucas is an avowed enemy of Israel and is planning to be one of Brighton & Hove's three MPs after the next General Election. She is also viciously skilled at underhand debating and will use every trick in the book to seem to win a argument. Typically liberal-minded interviewers are putty in her hands because she can behave so charmingly to them and the arguments of her opponents can be put down with such jibes as that they are against her 'because she is a woman'. Mostly though, Lucas just refuses to reply to good arguments against her ideas and just keeps repeating the same points, faster and louder until the time allotted for debate is over. She then smiles sweetly and goes off, totally convinced of her her own moral superiority. On foreign policy Caroline Lucas has much in common with George Galloway. Needless to say, when the time comes to vote in the General Election, nobody in Brighton should vote for Caroline Lucas and the Greens.