A Cambridge historian has announced that he has overcome his concerns about Jeremy Corbyn’s anti-Semitism and that he’s still going to vote Labour in Britain’s general election.
I'm voting Labour. Great manifesto, pity about the leader, shame about Labour's support for Brexit, though at least they promise another referendum. The failure to deal with antisemitism in the party makes me very angry. But in my constituency only Labour can beat the Tory.
— Sir Richard Evans (@RichardEvans36) November 24, 2019
Lefty professor from lefty university says he’s going to vote for the lefty party: dog bites man story, surely?
Yes, except for two key details. First, Sir Richard Evans is no random academic, but Cambridge’s Regius Emeritus Professor of History – with a knighthood to boot.
Second, his area of special expertise is the rise and fall of Nazi Germany. So you might think that Evans would have a better idea than most of the dangers of voting a routinely anti-Semitic party into power.
Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour is probably the most anti-Semitic party in Britain since Oswald Mosley’s British Union of Fascists.
And this isn’t — whatever Shami Chakrabati may have implied in the, I am certain, thorough and rigorous inquiry she wrote just before her surprise elevation to the House of Lords — a case of a few bad apples spoiling it for the rest. Corbyn’s Labour is riddled with anti-Semitism because it is intrinsic to hard-left ideology that Israel is the enemy, that it’s an ‘Apartheid state’ which should be erased from the map, that the Palestinians are saintly martyrs, that Jews are at best suspect ‘Zios’, at worst a verminous pest and the justifiable butt of sly, ugly jokes in which hook-nosed men with names like Rothschild secretly run the world…
No wonder that fully 80 percent of Britain’s Jewish population — including the Chief Rabbi — are terrified of Labour winning the election.
Yet still, Sir Richard Evans, the Regius Emeritus Professor of History at Cambridge, has overcome his distaste and is happy to tell the world that he is going to vote for these Marxist anti-Semites.
I’m not sure that phrase ‘The failure to deal with antisemitism in the party makes me very angry’, quite lets him off the hook, do you?
It is, after all, a formula you hear being used by quite a few of Corbyn’s cronies and MPs.
Rentagob Labour MP — and former Pipkins star — Jess Phillips, for example, has come up with this weasel variant.
The only response to the chief Rabbi that is moral is, "I'm sorry and I'll do whatever I possibly can to win back your community's trust." So that's what I will say.
— Jess Phillips Esq., (@jessphillips) November 26, 2019
See how it works? You alert the world to your mild concerns about being member of the most anti-Semitic party to disgrace the British political scene since Mosley’s blackshirts. Then you carry on supporting them as before.
The matchless Allison Pearson is properly forthright on this subject in her Telegraph column:
Take a minute to process that. The author of The Third Reich Trilogy, a man who knows in excruciating detail how demonisation of the Jews took hold in Germany, eventually leading to the murder of six million men, women and children, is angry about Corbyn’s failure to tackle anti-Semitism. But not so angry that he would consider voting for another party. Or denouncing Labour, which has seen Jewish MPs like Luciana Berger resign after complaining in vain to her leader about disgusting and insidious abuse.
Clearly, Sir Richard, who has been feted and ennobled for his scholarship on the Holocaust, doesn’t mind throwing British Jews under a bus so long as we avoid what he sees as the true horror of leaving the EU and having Boris Johnson as prime minister. He doesn’t even have ignorance as a defence. To come across such moral squalor in a professor who has dedicated his life to tracing the roots of anti-Semitism is like seeing a conservationist posing beside a lion he just shot.
Yup. Disgusting. But the bigger scandal here is that we live in a cultural climate so routinely left-biased, so casually anti-Semitic, and so unhinged by Brexit that Evans can brag about his voting choices on social media.
Can you imagine the left-wing hate mob’s response if the positions were reversed, and it were a conservative academic declaring his intention to hold his nose and vote for a party he knew to be anti-Semitic? There would be calls for him to be stripped of his knighthood, stripped of his emeritus professorship.
But because Evans is an ardent, hysterical Remainer — which is one of the reasons he’s voting Labour, by the way: a Prime Minister like Boris Johnson championing the democratic decision of the EU referendum is, in his bizarre Weltanschauung, worse than the rival who supports Hamas, models his economic policy on Chavez’s Venezuela, and defends anti-Semitic murals — he’s allowed to get away with it.
Evans is the kind of professor the BBC loves, which is why it invited him to appear as an expert witness on its recent series Rise of the Nazis. (Another of the resident experts, ludicrously, was Communist blogger Ash Sarkar, who treated us to her thoughts on how it might have felt to be a Communist being arrested by Hitler).
His contribution was larded with snidey hints that the Nazis were sorta, kinda a bit like an early version of Donald Trump and Nigel Farage.
As I wrote in my review in the Spectator:
Enter former Cambridge historian Professor Sir Richard Evans, one of the diverse talking heads who pop up at regular intervals to interpret the story being acted out by young men in brown shirts, Himmler-impersonators, etc. Hitler said he wanted to ‘Make Germany Great Again,’ he explained, and specialised in ‘empty slogans’ which, though vague, were ‘very powerful’. Also, Hitler was a man who ‘represented himself as an ordinary bloke, as it were,’ he told us with a sneer. Gosh, which contemporary politicians could he possibly have meant?
Actually, we don’t need to guess because Evans keeps telling us via his Remoaner tear-drenched Twitter account and also in articles such as the one he recently wrote for Prospect in which he compared contemporary British politics to those of the Weimar Republic, and attacking both Trump and ‘Johnson and Dominic Cummings and their unelected, hard-right government’ with its plans to ‘force through a disastrous no-deal Brexit without parliamentary approval and against the wishes of the majority of the population’.
Though I don’t believe that Jeremy Corbyn’s Marxists stand a chance of winning this election, I do find it both scary and depressing that around 31 percent of the electorate are telling opinion polls that they are still planning on voting for them.
It’s not, after all, as though the story of Nazi Germany isn’t pretty much the only thing taught in British school history classes these days.
And it’s not also as though the Nazis are the baddies from history with whom the modern hard left — Corbyn’s supporters among them — aren’t most particularly obsessed.
So how do you explain the cognitive dissonance?
How is that when we all know that persecution of Jews led to the Holocaust and that Hitler’s National Socialists were really bad, so many people — ‘educated’ ones too — are still eager to vote for Corbyn’s anti-Semitic socialists?
If only there were some clever academic who could put it all in context. An Emeritus Professor of History at Cambridge, say.