The re-emergence of the British Labour Party as a serious contender for power – following a period when they seemed unelectable under a new leader from the hard Left – is extremely worrying.
Although I recognise a clear resurrection of Marxism here, it is also worryingly comparable to the nightmare scenario of the rise of Nazism in the early 1930s when Hitler was swept to power by an electorate desperate for a restoration of pride and plenty. With the rise of socialist agendas in Britain and in other countries, the subtle agenda of anti-Semitism is once more being carried along by an increasingly angry undercurrent for change.
I am not suggesting Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn is a new Hitler, but it is difficult not to be reminded of the Nazi era. After all, swathes of young people came out in support of Corbyn – the no-hoper turned celebrity almost overnight – in spite of much negative press coverage, including his evident anti-Semitic sympathies. But as someone has said, “the lesson we learn from history is that we never learn the lesson from history!”
The latest victim of the menacing – some would say thuggish – behaviour of those surrounding Mr Corbyn is one of his own MPs, Luciana Berger, a 36-year-old Jewish mum representing a Liverpool constituency.
According to the Daily Mail, she faces the threat of de-selection from party activists unless she apologises for previously criticising her leader. A former member of the Shadow Cabinet who quit her post in protest at Mr Corbyn’s stance, Miss Berger has received vile anti-Semitic abuse including 2,500 hate-filled messages in just three days from internet trolls. These included threats to rape or kill her, while some featured the yellow star used by the Nazis to identify Jews.
Mr Corbyn has faced repeated criticism that he has failed to tackle anti-Semitism in his party. He has personally referred to terror groups Hamas and Hezbollah as ‘friends’ and, in October 2014, travelled to Tunisia to visit the grave of a PLO terrorist linked with the massacre of Jewish athletes at the 1972 Munich Olympics.
But none of this seems to move the rising mass of ‘Corbynistas’, who instead turn out to cheer their man as if he were some kind of pop star. Meanwhile, Labour takes an eight-point lead over the Conservatives – 46 per cent to 38 – according to a YouGov poll for The Times.
Grassroots group Momentum, evidently responsible for Mr Corbyn’s meteoric rise to prominence, has clearly recruited a sea of red political soldiers waving flags of intolerance at anyone daring to oppose their ideologies.
Isi Leibler, a highly respected Jewish leader and commentator, advises Britain’s Jews to cross this ‘Red Sea’ by packing their bags for Israel. The threat to their well-being and safety may be worse than at any time since 1656, when Jews were invited back to Britain under Cromwell following their expulsion in 1290.
“It is a horrifying prospect that a man who publicly praises Hamas and Hezbollah as his ‘friends’, who attended a ceremony in Tunis commemorating the murderer of Israeli Olympic athletes, was employed by the state-controlled Iranian TV to present programs, and tolerated the proliferation of overt anti-Semitism in his party was so close to being elected Prime Minister,” he wrote.
Such huge support “for a primitive Trotskyite whose friends include terrorists…is simply mind-boggling”.
The ‘red line’ has now been crossed for British Jews who are considered pariahs by a substantial proportion of the nation, he added. Anti-Israel rhetoric has reached unprecedented levels both in street demonstrations and at universities, while armed guards are now required at schools, synagogues and other Jewish centres.
By contrast to the 1930s, he said, today’s Jews have a state willing to embrace them where they can enjoy the fruits of the Jewish national renaissance and leave behind the humiliation of anti-Semitism.
Germany in the 1930s might seem a world away from 21
st century Britain, but what makes us think we are insured against totalitarianism, dictatorship, chaos and confusion, riots in the streets and even civil war?
We can insure our houses against a variety of risks, but there is no such insurance policy for our nation at this time. We have turned our backs on the Lord of glory – and he has left us to our own devices and dilemmas. We are now paying heavily for not taking out (everlasting) life insurance as we reap the consequences of worshipping the hedonistic idols of atheism, with society breaking down, terror stalking our streets and what we used to regard as ‘sin’ being celebrated and promoted.
In 1930s Germany, few dreamed that this apparently charismatic figure who talked of restoring German pride and was gaining in popularity by the day would, within a dozen years, have sent 50 million people to their deaths in a war that would see the destruction of the nation’s economy along with many of its great cities, and the most appalling crime in history – the murder of six million Jews.
Many believe the Holocaust could never happen again – and some actually believe it never took place at all – because it was wicked beyond belief. But in Britain’s brave new world where anything goes, a party whose leader has obvious anti-Semitic sympathies is now more popular than the newly re-elected Conservative Government of Theresa May, which has had to agree to work with Northern Ireland’s Democratic Unionist Party to carry out legislation.
It’s worth recalling that homosexuals were also sent to Nazi death camps. But now, perversely, their lifestyle is held up as something for which we must all be proud – and those who disagree are, like the Jews, also pariahs. Of course both these scenarios are horribly wrong. God loves gay people as much as any of us, but not their lifestyle.
An estimated one million people joined the ‘Gay Pride’ march through London, seen by the BBC as something to lift our spirits in these difficult times blighted by terror and confusion. But the ‘happy’ scene is in fact a tragedy, underscored for me as I watched the TV cameras pan across the parade down Regent Street with the distinctive features of All Souls, Langham Place, in the background.
For many across the world, this church is seen as the very heart and soul of Christian evangelicalism – representing those who believe the Bible is the unchanging word of God for all time; and that it means what it says, and says what it means. But the contrast picked up by the cameras also reminds us that the current state of the union is only temporary, whereas our God is eternal. Comparing people to grass, the prophet Isaiah wrote: “The grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of our God endures forever” (Isa 40:8).
And remember: “Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account” (Heb 4:13).
Charles Gardner is author of Israel the Chosen, available from Amazon, and Peace in Jerusalem, available from olivepresspublisher.com