Few left to fight in Galloway's Bradford


If Rudi Leavor has a concern, he won't go to his local MP. A constituent of George Galloway in Bradford West, he is resigned to incidents such as the Respect leader storming out of a debate with an Israeli.

"That's Galloway, unfortunately," said Mr Leavor, chairman of Bradford Reform Synagogue, who speaks instead to nearby MP Kris Hopkins.

Mr Galloway, along with Liberal Democrat David Ward and all the local MPs, was invited to the shul's Chanucah party. "They don't come, which is just as well if they're of that mind. We just go on and we don't take any notice."

If the reaction from Bradford's Jewish community to recent outbursts has been muted, it is because there is hardly a community to speak of. Once thriving - Jews helped build the chamber of commerce and history records three Jewish lord mayors - the exodus to Leeds began with the decline of the textile industry.

Mr Leavor admits that neither Mr Galloway nor Mr Ward are making Bradford a welcome place for Jews.

But as Mr Waxman - chairman of Bradford Synagogue until it closed in November, after 106 years - points out, in any case "all the young Jews have left, never mind anyone coming here now".

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