Brighton Labour council candidate sent ‘deeply offensive antisemitic’ letter
Brighton – A Labour Party council candidate has been slammed for an ‘openly antisemitic’ letter he sent to colleagues in Brighton in which he branded Israel racist and praised the BNP. The Sussex Jewish Representative Council is demanding the Brighton and Hove Labour group remove Jerry Gould from its candidates list after posting his letter on its website.
In the letter circulated to local party members by Gould, a candidate for Brighton and Hove Council, he wrote of his disappointment at the NEC decision to accept the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance definition of antisemitism on September 4.
He wrote: ‘I have been reflecting on my position within the Party since the supine acceptance of the IHRA draft by the NEC as Labour Party policy. ‘I have no doubt the modern state of Israel is a racist endeavour in the same way and for the same reasons as the USA and Australia.
‘These are the theft of land from the indigenous population,the refusal to recognise equal rights in law for the indigenous population and the dehumanising and systematic genocide against the indigenous population.’
He went on to say he ‘will not Kao Tao’ to the policy – mis-spelling the word kowtow – before adding: ‘Many friends of mine have said this is a small change to unite the Party.
‘My reply is; I have read the 1994 constitution of the British National Party, in that there is only one clause with which I disagree (all the others being good ‘Old Labour’ principles) and that is ‘…for the indigenous white population…’ such a small change to Labour values?
‘After a day’s reflection I have concluded as a life long Trades Unionist I will do all I can to enact my principles so I will not resign from the Party or as your candidate.’
The leader of Brighton and Hove Council and Labour group Councillor Daniel Yates praised Gould as ‘a name to remember’ when he was chosen as a candidate in August.
However, on Saturday Councillor Yates said there was no place in Brighton for Gould’s comments.
He tweeted: ‘As Leader of the Labour and Cooperative Group of Councillors I want to make clear that the statement circulated by this individual who is not a Councillor is deeply offensive and unacceptable.
‘If they were a Councillor I would be immediately supporting the withdrawal of the whip and their suspension by the party.’
He added: ‘However as they are not a councillor we have referred this matter to the Chair of their Constituency Party and the Chair of the Local Campaigns Forum which is responsible for the list of candidates.
‘I hope and expect that swift action will be taken for these openly antisemitic and divisive comments. There is no place in Brighton and Hove or indeed in political discourse for hate speech in any form and all examples must be addressed swiftly.
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‘These views will undoubtedly have caused within the community, and we completely and unreservedly wish to disassociate ourselves from this individual and his actions.
’Gould’s rant comes after a summer of recriminations in the Labour Party with leader Jeremy Corbyn accused of being soft on antisemitic views in his party.
On Sunday, as Labour members descended on Liverpool for the party’s annual conference, Corbyn faced intense questioning from Andrew Marr about his record on antisemitism.
The leader declared he would ‘die fighting racism’.
Jerry Gould’s letter in full: