AJewish community which is, by inclination, one that prefers to work behind the scenes can scarcely have thought it possible that it would find itself in the eye of a political storm this week. And yet that is what has happened as a result of the appearance of two European politicians, Michal Kaminski of Poland and Roberts Zile of Latvia, at the Conservative Party conference in Manchester. Mr Kaminski has, as our remarkable interview with him makes clear, a — to say the least — coloured past for Jews to come to terms with. He was, just over 20 years ago, a member of the National Revival of Poland movement, which is now virulently antisemitic (although Mr Kaminski maintains it was not when he was a member). And he has made worrying, though disputed, references to Polish Jews’ complicity with Communists. Mr Zile, if anything, has an even more controversial track record: his Latvian For Fatherland and Freedom Party is said to participate in annual celebrations of the Waffen SS. And yet Mr Kaminski is a frequent flagwaver for Israel in the European Parliament, has been embraced by Israeli politicians, and made a highly public appearance at the Conservative Friends of Israel lunch in Manchester. Seeking to land a blow on the seemingly Teflon exterior of David Cameron, the Foreign Secretary, David Miliband, made political capital out of the controversy. What, he demanded, were the Tories doing in associating with people with antisemitic and neo-Nazi links? It is not unreasonable of the president of the Board of Deputies to ask Mr Cameron for assurances about the status of his political allies in the European Parliament. But the timing of his letter was naive. To write in the middle of the Conservative conference invited a row. The Jewish Leadership Council are said to worry that Mr Wineman has put in peril any chance of a decent relationship with a future Conservative government by questioning Mr Cameron’s political judgment. But what this mess really shows is that the Board should have got their act together long ago by looking into exactly what Mr Kaminski and Mr Zile did do and say, and then asking the Conservatives for their comments. That they left it until this week even to ask is lamentable and counter-productive.