Conservatives doctor video of Sadiq Khan to score antisemitism point

Conservatives doctor video of Sadiq Khan to score antisemitism point

The Conservatives have tried to mislead the British public by releasing a version of a Sky News interview with Sadiq Khan edited to make it look as if he says Labour is an antisemitic party

Labour Mayor of London Khan, a Muslim, was addressing questions raised by his party withdrawing support for and suspending its candidate for the forthcoming Rochdale by-election after the emergence of comments he had made about Israel and Jewish media figures.

Asked by a Sky News presenter about what had been said, Khan said, “As far as I’m concerned, that sort of language isn’t acceptable, and it certainly shouldn’t be acceptable in a party like mine, that is proud to be both anti-racist and antisemitic,” before correcting himself by adding: “I beg your pardon, tackling antisemitism”.

The Conservative Party then posted the interview on X/Twitter without Khan’s self-correction, attaching the words: “Sadiq Khan says the quiet part out loud.”

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Khan has been repeatedly targeted by the Tories at national level, seemingly because they believe he is unpopular in London and can be defeated at the mayoral election on 2 May, lifting the spirits of the party as national opinion polls suggest it will be defeated at the next general election.

There have been recent previous attempts to portray Khan himself as anti-Jewish by Conservative mayoral candidate Susan Hall, who claimed at the Tory conference last October that some Jewish Londoners were “frightened” due to “the divisive attitude” of the Mayor, and by the Conservative-supporting charity Campaign Against Antisemitism, which has blamed Khan for antisemitic views being expressed at pro-Palestine demonstrations in London, despite the Mayor having no powers to ban such events.

Following Hall’s remark, the Board of Deputies of British Jews, the largest communal Jewish organisation in the UK, issued a statement praising Khan as someone who treated them “with friendship and respect”.

In 2016, the unsuccessful mayoral campaign of Tory candidate Zac Goldsmith sought to portray his opponent Khan as tolerant of Muslim extremism during a contest in which Khan was praised by Jewish media for mending relations between Labour and the community at a time when many Jews were concerned that the party was led by Jeremy Corbyn, who has since been suspended for his reaction to a critical report about antisemitism in Labour under him.

In 2018, following his election in 2016, Khan was guest of honour at the Board of Deputies annual dinner.

The Conservatives’ misleading  X/Twitter post has been augmented by readers’ “added context” pointing out that the Sky News clip had been “cut short” by the Conservative Party.

It was put on the site the day the Community Support Trust, which records antisemitic incidents in Britain, released figures to show that they reached a record high in 2023, with two-thirds of them happening after Hamas forces attacked, raped, kidnapped and murdered Jews in Israel on 7 October.

Late in October, Khan called for a ceasefire in the ensuing Israel-Hamas war, which has seen thousands of Palestinian civilians killed by Israeli forces.

The most recent opinion polls about this year’s London mayoral race, all released in November, gave Khan leads over Hall of 2520 and 27 points respectively.

Dave Hill is editor and publisher of Support the site and its writers for £5 a month or £50 a year and get things for your money too. Details HERE. Threads: DaveHillOnLondon. X: OnLondon and Dave Hill. Photo: Khan with Jewish community leader, December 2023.

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