Jeremy Hunt called out for his ‘disgraceful’ comments using the Holocaust to smear Jeremy Corbyn

Jeremy Hunt and Jeremy Corbyn
Fréa Lockley

On 2 July, Conservative leadership hopeful Jeremy Hunt made what many people described as a “disgraceful” comment. He used the Holocaust in an effort to smear Jeremy Corbyn. The response, quite rightly, condemns Hunt.

“Get off our history you horrible man”

On 1 July, Jewish News published an interview with the foreign secretary. The following day, it shared a tweet featuring a quote from Hunt:

This caused hurt and outrage for many Jewish people, especially those whose ancestors the far right murdered in the Holocaust. Children’s author Michael Rosen accused Hunt of an “unprincipled hijacking of a world tragedy for his own electoral advantage”:

Rosen later asked an incredibly poignant question:

Jewish group Jewdas made a similar comment. It also drew attention to Conservative Party support for far-right Hungarian PM Viktor Orbán. Theresa May met Orbán in 2016 and she reportedly promised to “maintain strong bilateral relations” between Hungary and the UK. In 2018, meanwhile, Conservative MEPs backed the far-right leader against a motion in the EU parliament. Orbán was “accused of violating press freedoms, undermining judicial independence and waging an antisemitic campaign against a leading Jewish businessman”.

Author David Rosenberg, who also guides educational visits to Auschwitz, called Hunt’s comments “disgusting” and “disgraceful”:

Jessica Simor QC also condemned Hunt, saying:

Political points

Hunt’s comments have faced much criticism. As some have pointed out, they draw attention to the gross hypocrisy of many allegations made against Corbyn. Because had Corbyn made comments similar to Hunt’s, the calls for his resignation would have been immediate:

And this is a very serious point. Because yet again, the corporate media’s allegations of antisemitism against Corbyn and many left-wing Labour members have spiralled. In a detailed thread, Harry Tuttle pointed out that many accusations against leading Jewish authors and academics have focused on comments they have made about the Holocaust:

Yet Hunt seems to think he can make this accusation against Corbyn freely. As the Conservative leadership moves into the final stages, the situation in the UK looks bleaker than ever. Our future prime minister will either be Boris Johnson, ‘famous’ for his sexist and racist insults, or Hunt. Alongside the latter’s appalling track record destroying the NHS and his deeply alarming actions as foreign secretary, he has now used the Holocaust for political point-scoring.

We need a general election and we need it now, because neither of these men is fit for purpose.

Featured images via Wikimedia – Ted Eytan / Wikimedia – Rwendland

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