Alison Gove-Humphries, who has been selected to stand for Labour in Birmingham City Council’s Hall Green by-election in May, has been exposed for sharing antisemitic posts promoting conspiracy myths on her Facebook account. She shared articles putting forward the conspiracy myths that Israel is the “key link in exporting ISIS oil” and that the “Israel lobby manufactured [the] UK Labour Party’s antisemitism crisis.”
Gove-Humphries, a keen supporter of Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn, has defended her posts in a statement to the Birmingham Mail: “I am extremely saddened by the allegation that my private Facebook posts were antisemitic. I merely shared a link to third-party posts with no commentary or opinion. I share many topical new pieces across a broad spectrum on my Facebook account and it is clear to me these old posts have been taken completely out of context.” She went on to claim that the allegations against her constituted “intrusion and misrepresentation” and said that she did not want to be “distracted by these hurtful allegations.”
Trying to deflect attention, Gove-Humphries said that she has demonstrated her commitment to diversity by co-producing articles for the Holocaust Education Trust, co-ordinating Black History Month events and hosting events where Holocaust survivors spoke to school children.
While the West Midlands Labour Party has declined to comment, Gove-Humphries is facing calls to step down from Labour Councillor Barry Henley, who said: “These are clearly antisemitic postings. In my view there should be a Labour Party investigation into Gove-Humphries’ membership and suitability to be a candidate, and in the meantime a new candidate should be put in place. As a Jewish member of the Labour Party I have written to them and asking for an investigation.”
The articles Gove-Humphries knowingly shared on Facebook are glaringly antisemitic in line with the International Definition of Antisemitism. Campaign Against Antisemitism echoes Councillor Henley’s principled and sensible call for Gove-Humphries to step down and an investigation launched.
We have little confidence, however, that any decisive action will be taken. For example, in September last year the Labour Party refused to investigate Birmingham Councillor Zafar Iqbal Said, who shared an antisemitic video produced by a former Grand Wizard of the Ku Klax Klan. He claimed that he had “no idea” how the video on how the “Zionist Matrix of Power controls Media, Politics and Banking” came to be posted on his Facebook timeline.