The idea that Jack Straw is an antisemite is risible. Some of his best friends are, no doubt, Jewish — and, having a Jewish maternal great grandmother, he was accused by former Labour MP Tam Dalyell of being part of “a cabal of Jewish advisers” who surrounded Tony Blair.
But, as Israeli Ambassador Daniel Taub put it this week, Mr Straw’s comments on Jewish influence follow a “very troubling tradition” of antisemitic tropes about “sinister Jewish power”.
According to former MK Einat Wilf, Mr Straw said that “unlimited” Jewish funds control and divert American policy and that Germany has an unhealthy “obsession” with supporting Israel.
As if that was not bad enough, he then defended himself against the accusation of antisemitism by citing — without intentional irony — the work of John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt, whose tawdry book is based almost in its entirety on the very same antisemitic tropes. For a clever man, Mr Straw is being remarkably stupid.