When Guido broke the original Labour anti-Semitism scandal back in 2016, and then the ensuing slew of revelations about dozens of Labour councillors, Corbyn’s supporters dismissed it as a “row launched by Guido Fawkes”:
Chris Williamson said our anti-Semitism coverage had “no credibility whatsoever” and called us a “squalid smear factory”. The Corbyn sympathising website Electronic Intifada accused Guido of “trawling through the Twitter backlog” of Labour councillors and claimed our stories were “manufactured” by the “Israel Lobby”. Their conspiratorial take was shared and promoted by prominent Corbyn outriders.
Another article by a pro-Corbyn journalist on the website Open Democracy claimed that our anti-Semitism stories were “baseless”, accused Guido of being “systematically dishonest about Labour Party antisemitism” and of “misrepresenting” those we reported on (even though Labour’s compliance unit eventually agreed with us and kicked them out).
Corbyn himself said anti-Semitism was a smear. He was filmed by Vice on the phone to Seumas Milne dismissing the anti-Semitism scandal as “utterly disgusting subliminal nastiness”.
Two years on, the Corbynista response to Guido’s anti-Semitism revelations has led to Labour being resoundingly rejected by Jewish communities at the ballot box.
In Barnet, which has a Jewish population of 15%, the highest of any council in the country, Labour were humiliated and the Tories secured the result of the night. Turnout in Golders Green was an incredible 70%.
In the Kensal ward in Salford, which has a Jewish population of 40%, the highest of any ward in the country, the Tories took it from Labour.
In the Pilkington Park ward in Bury, which has a Jewish population of around 25%, there was a huge swing from Labour to the Tories, who won by 700 votes.
During two years of campaigning journalism on this issue we broke story after story showing Labour had a serious anti-Semitism problem. Corbyn and his allies could have recognised the problem and dealt with it. Instead they accused us of smears. The Jewish Chronicle reports that it isn’t just Jews who were horrified by our anti-Semitism revelations, and that non-Jews joined in what they are calling a “mass protest vote” against Corbyn. The story cut through to the public – it is no coincidence that, following two years of Guido’s stories, anti-Semitism has become the Tories’ main attack line against Labour. Jewish Labour members and moderate Labour readers who are not normally sympathetic to Guido’s editorial line have privately thanked us for acting as a pro bono Labour Party compliance unit. The Corbynistas could have listened, instead their anti-Semitism scandal has come home to roost…