Antisemitism in Political Parties

Sandra White

2011-2021: Scottish National Party Member of the Scottish Parliament for Glasgow Kelvin


  1. On or around 6th November 2015, Sandra White retweeted an image (originally posted by Charles Edward Frith, who is well known for promulgating antisemitic conspiracies, and who has promoted Holocaust revisionism) which showed a sow, on whose body was superimposed an image of a stylised bank building crowned by a Star of David, and the word “Rothschild”. Numerous piglets are shown suckling from her, some bearing national flags accompanied by the names of their intelligence agencies (the UK and USA with MI6 and the CIA), whilst others bear the names of Islamist terrorist organisations (Boko Haram and Al Qaeda). One piglet bears the Israeli flag, whilst another has the words “Mossad ISIS”.


Campaign Against Antisemitism’s analysis is that Ms White’s action constitutes a breach of the International Definition of Antisemitism and qualifies as antisemitic discourse according to our methodology.

By sharing conspiracy theories about the Rothschild family, which promote the trope that a Jewish family dynasty secretly controls governments and banks, and that Israel created or controls ISIS [1], Ms White was “making mendacious, dehumanising, demonising, or stereotypical allegations about Jews as such or the power of Jews as collective — such as, especially but not exclusively, the myth about a world Jewish conspiracy or of Jews controlling the media, economy, government or other societal institutions.”


On 9th November 2015, after the Jewish Chronicle brought the tweet to the attention of the Scottish National Party, it was reported that a spokesman had said: “This tweet was re-tweeted in error and has been removed from Sandra White’s account.”

On 11th November 2015, Ms White apologised “unreservedly” for retweeting the image, saying she had done so unintentionally. On the same date, Nicola Sturgeon, leader of the Scottish National Party, wrote that she had spoken directly to Ms White about the retweet of the “abhorrent” image, and that she would not tolerate antisemitism of any kind or at any level. However, she accepted Ms White’s explanation that the retweet was accidental. On 26th September 2016, it was reported that the matter had been considered by the Standards, Procedures and Public Appointments Committee and that commissioner Mr Bill Thompson had interviewed Ms White in March concluding that “although the cartoon was offensive and could in other circumstances have been regarded as bringing discredit upon the Parliament, [he was] satisfied that [White] did not intend to re-tweet the cartoon, the content of which she decried”.

It transpires that Ms White had been photographed meeting with representatives of proscribed terrorist group Hamas on a trip to Lebanon in 2009, as well as sharing a platform with the Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign’s Mick Napier, who has been charged for racially aggravated trespass and assault in relation to antisemitism.

Ms White retained her seat in the 2016 elections to the Scottish Parliament.

In September 2017, the Campaign Against Antisemitism put this matter to Ms White, but did not receive a response.

In November 2019, the Campaign Against Antisemitism again put this matter to Ms White, but did not receive a response.

In November 2019, we put this matter to the Scottish National Party. A spokesman said: “There is no place for antisemitism in Scotland or in the SNP. If people make mistakes then we will educate them. If people are antisemitic then we will expel them. All political parties have a duty to show leadership, and take tough action in order to reassure the Jewish community that these matters are taken seriously.”


Campaign Against Antisemitism has rated the Party’s handling of this matter as “unsatisfactory”. Our rating system is explained in our methodology. This case was last updated on 19th June 2020.