Labour sus­pends Mos­sad con­spir­acy the­ory coun­cil­lor

Fife rep­re­sen­ta­tive to face party probe over con­tro­ver­sial Face­book post

The Courier & Advertiser (Fife Edition) - - NEWS - KIERAN AN­DREWS AND CRAIG SMITH kian­drews@the­

A Fife coun­cil­lor who sug­gested Jewish news­pa­pers crit­i­cis­ing Labour’s po­si­tion on anti-Semitism may be work­ing on be­half of the Is­raeli se­cret ser­vice has been sus­pended by the party.

Mary Lock­hart has been widely crit­i­cised since The Courier re­vealed her com­ments at the week­end, made in a Face­book post which has since been deleted.

A Labour spokesper­son said: “The Labour Party takes all com­plaints of anti-Semitism ex­tremely se­ri­ously and we are com­mit­ted to chal­leng­ing and cam­paign­ing against it in all its forms.

“All com­plaints about anti-Semitism are fully in­ves­ti­gated in line with our rules and pro­ce­dures and any ap­pro­pri­ate dis­ci­plinary ac­tion is taken.”

The UK’s three lead­ing Jewish news­pa­pers had pub­lished a joint front page mes­sage warn­ing a Cor­byn-led gov­ern­ment would pose an “ex­is­ten­tial threat to Jewish life in this coun­try”.

Ms Lock­hart posted about the move: “If it is a Mos­sad as­sisted cam­paign to pre­vent the elec­tion of a Labour Gov­ern­ment pledged to recog­nise Pales­tine as a State, it is un­ac­cept­able in­ter­fer­ence in the democ­racy of Bri­tain.”

Lochgelly, Car­den­den and Be­narty rep­re­sen­ta­tive Ms Lock­hart has not re­sponded to any re­quest for com­ment since mak­ing the post.

But in a Face­book state­ment, she said last night: “Fol­low­ing my sus­pen­sion from the Labour Party to al­low con­sid­er­a­tion of whether or not one of my Face­book posts breached the Labour Party’s rules in re­spect of anti-Semitism, I have deleted the post.

“I will not be com­ment­ing fur­ther on this (or) any other mat­ter un­til a judg­ment has been made. I re­main a sup­porter of the Labour Party and of its cur­rent lead­er­ship.”

Mean­while, the chair­man of the Scot­tish Con­ser­va­tives’ youth wing has been ac­cused of anti-Semitism af­ter us­ing a phrase de­vel­oped by the Nazis.

James Bundy, an eco­nomics stu­dent at St An­drews Univer­sity, posted on so­cial me­dia at the week­end about a BBC pack­age about gen­der stereo­types and chil­dren that the cor­po­ra­tion was us­ing “his tax­payer’s money… to pro­mote cul­tural Marx­ism” – spark­ing a back­lash from some quar­ters.

Scot­tish Green MSP Ross Greer said it was “ut­terly un­ac­cept­able” for a lead­ing fig­ure within a main­stream po­lit­i­cal party to “use and nor­malise” a term which has such anti-Semitic un­der­pin­nings.

Cul­tural Marx­ism was a con­spir­acy the­ory de­vel­oped in Nazi Ger­many to de­monise Jews and is a term con­sis­tently used by far-right groups such as the BNP.

Mr Bundy was ap­proached for com­ment.

A spokesman for the Scot­tish Con­ser­va­tives said: “The tweet has been deleted.”

Fol­low­ing my sus­pen­sion from the Labour Party to al­low con­sid­er­a­tion of whether or not one of my Face­book posts breached the Labour Party’s rules... I have deleted the post. COUN­CIL­LOR MARY LOCK­HART

Pic­ture: PA.

Coun­cil­lor Mary Lock­hart has been sus­pended by the Labour Party.

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