Denise Findlay has resigned from the SNP’s Conduct Committee after it was revealed that she had written on social media: “Israel with its treatment of Palestinians and latest apartheid laws is Nazi. It is not anti-Semitic to call Israel a Nazi state.”
Her tweets date from the summer of 2018, when the Labour Party was debating whether to adopt the International Definition of Antisemitism, which includes “Drawing comparisons of contemporary Israeli policy to that of the Nazis” as an example of antisemitism. She tweeted at least five times describing Israel as a Nazi state, sometimes in explicit criticism of the International Definition.
The Conduct Committee is due to investigate candidate Neale Hanvey, who also fell afoul of the International Definition of Antisemitism by comparing Israel to Nazis and was recently dropped by the SNP, although he will still appear on the ballot in Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath.
Ms Findlay reportedly urged SNP voters to continue to back Mr Findlay in Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath after he was suspended by the Party, and it is being reported that other local SNP members and volunteers are also continuing to back him, despite calls from Party leader Nicola Sturgeon not to do so.
Ms Findlay had been elected to the Conduct Committee in October reportedly promising to “protect members from spurious complaints brought by our opponents of the media [sic]”, with the support of Joanna Cherry QC, a prominent SNP MP, who tweeted at the time: “#Vote #DeniseFinlay1 Conduct Committee.”
In a statement, the SNP said: “There is no place for antisemitism in Scotland or in the SNP. All political parties have a duty to show leadership, and we will always take tough action in order to reassure the Jewish community that these matters are taken seriously. When challenged on her actions, Denise Findlay resigned from the SNP. The views she expressed are entirely at odds with the ethos of this Party.”
Campaign Against Antisemitism’s Antisemitism Barometer 2019 showed that antisemitism on the far-left of British politics has surpassed that of the far-right.
On 8th December, regardless of religion, race or politics, Jews and non-Jews alike will gather in Parliament Square to declare that they stand together against antisemitism in the face of Jew-hatred in politics and mounting anti-Jewish hate crime.