Saturday, 30 April 2016 14:27

March - Media Monitoring Highlights

From a French presidential candidate spreading antisemitic ideas to tweets claiming Hitler was a Zionist God, these March highlights are an overview of the most significant results of our monitoring of traditional and new media in Belgium, France, Greece, Hungary, and the United Kingdom.

From a French presidential candidate spreading antisemitic ideas to tweets claiming Hitler was a Zionist God, these March highlights are an overview of the most significant results of our monitoring of traditional and new media in Belgium, France, Greece, Hungary, and the United Kingdom.


france presidential candidate

Date of publication: January – March 2016

Link: personal Twitter account and Twitter account for his 2017 presidential campaign

Description of the antisemitic content

Henry de Lesquen published several tweets claiming that Jewish people are racist against all non-Jews, and are responsible for the recent terrorist attacks in Europe. In his blog, Lesquen stated that immigration into France must stop, and that Muslims should not be able to practice their customs. 

From his blog:

  • “I want to teach respect for the national identity. The ritual circumcision of children will be forbidden. The ritual slaughter of the animals will be forbidden. The wearing of the Islamic veil will be forbidden. The construction of minarets and mosques will be stopped”.
  •  “I want to stop the immigration-invasion (…) and the abolishment of the right asylum. I would like to develop a great national measure of re-emigration of the extra-European people who don’t want to assimilate the French culture”.
 france tweet 1  @berrier451 the Jewish coterie (CRIF, Licra…) imposed us immigration because of the antiracism. So they are responsible of the terrorist attacks.”
 france tweet 2  “@tetabaffe@EstherHollstein@PhilomeneKereon@HopitalC the Jewish racist considers the non-Jewish French as beasts.”


 france tweet 3 “3. It is the racism of Jews who conduct them to monotheism when they had taken to theirs gods the “Goyim” that they hated.”


About the source: 

Henry de Lesquen is a French far-right politician as well as a journalist for “Radio Courtoisie”, a French far-right ultra-Catholic radio channel. Lesquen is going to run as a candidate for the French presidential elections in 2017.

Myth Debunked:

Some of Lesquen’s remarks are a classic example of conspiracies against Jewish people accusing them of disliking all non-Jewish individuals. This claim is false since Judaism has no objective to convert other people to its faith. Claims that Jewish people are responsible for terrorist attacks in Europe are completely unwarranted and unjustified as antisemitism is a key aspect of jihadist ideology. Lesquen’s quest for a homogenous and purely “European” society belongs to a type of ideology which prompts a broken society where individuals feel ostracized.



france priebke

Date of publication: 05 March 2016

Media Outlet:

Headline: “Interview with an ex-Nazi officer Erich Priebke: a testimony to be taken in account”

Description of the antisemitic content: 

StopMesonges has re-published an old interview with Erich Priebke, ex-Nazi officer who died in 2013, framing it a reliable testimony worth to be taken into account. In the interview, Priebke displays no remorse for his actions in the past, nor those of the Nazi regime. Priebke justifies the encampment of Jews with the fact that they presented a “danger” to society and represented some kind of evil because of their “huge economic power”. Priebke also denies the existence of gas chambers in the camps and claims that the Americans built the chambers after the war. 

Interview excerpts: 

  • “Loyalty to my past is a question of convictions. It is my way to see the world, my ideals, what, German people, we call the Weltanschauung and also a question of pride”.
  • "Jews have collected in their hands a huge economic power, so as a political consequence, it was unfair because they represented an absolutely tiny fraction of the world population”.
  • "During these terrible war years, confining in Lager (in Italian, the term for concentration camps) civilian populations who presented a danger was something we can consider as normal”.
  • “In the camps, we never found gas chambers, except those build after the war by the Americans in Dachau”.

About the source:

With more than 112,000 likes on Facebook, the website StopMensonges (“Stop with lies”) claims to show you “the real world where we live in”.  The website was founded by Laurent Freeman, who defines himself a “truth seeker”. Freeman has been recently interviewed as “one of the most influential conspiracy theorist of France” by the French magazine “Society” in an article that explains why unfounded conspiracy theories are getting very popular today.

Myth Debunked:  

The conspiracy that Jews are a danger to society is an unjustified belief that comes from an old myth that saw Jewish people represent evil. The belief that the world’s economic powers are concentrated in the hands of Jews is a classic stereotype that is used to fuel hatred towards the Jewish population. Priebke’s denial of the existence of gas chambers during the Holocaust is entirely unfounded as there are first-hand accounts throughout history about the existence and use of the chambers by the Nazis.



UK Gerry downingGerry Downing's blog post on the Socialist Fight website

Date of publication: 2014 to present; expulsion in March 2016

Media outlet: Socialist Fight

Description of the antisemitic content: 

A few blog post on Socialist Fight, the website of former Labour member Gerry Downing, demands that “Marxists must address the Jewish Question”. Downing refers to a “world Jewish-Zionist Bourgeoisie”, making distorted statements on Zionism, and in several occasions denies the existence of antisemitism.  Downing also said that attacks like 9/11 should never be “condemned”, which prompt the Labour leadership to expel him from the party.

Excerpts from his blog posts:

  • “How to explain the current situation then, when far from Jews being pariahs and rejected by capitalism, Jews are revered by capital and a form of Jewish nationalism – Zionism, exercises enormous power in the imperialist world? Why are Jews so overrepresented among the most strident spokespeople for capitalist reaction – the neo-conservatives and neo-liberal ideologues?” 
  • “Zionism is a Jewish nationalist-communalist project; its supporters are highly conscious ethnocentric activists with a material base in terms of capitalist property, within the ruling classes of several imperialist countries, as well as Israel.  This caste has acquired major moral and political influence among much wider layers of the imperialist bourgeoisie. If this were not true, Zionists could not have the influence they do in the current situation.” 
  • “Instead fake-allegations of racism against Jews have become a sure sign of support for, or capitulation to, the established order, including by currents in the workers movement who are ultimately servile to capitalism“. 

About the source:

Gerry Downing, leader of a Trotskyist group called Socialist Fight, was expelled from the Labour party by the national executive committee last August. Downing appealed against his expulsion and was eventually reinstated into the party in November. In March, he was expelled again due to further evidence of his extremist views.

Myth Debunked: 

As it is clear from the excerpts above, Downing claims that Zionists are ethnocentric. Opposite of what he says, the concept of Zionism mainly pertains to the idea of “the national movement for the return of the Jewish people to their homeland and the resumption of Jewish sovereignty in the Land of Israel”. This idea does not involve the dissolution of any specific religion or ethnicity. To say that Jewish people are behind global politics is also a classic example of unwarranted antisemitic stereotypes. His claims on the “fake-allegations of racism against Jews” are also contradicted by facts: in Belgium alone, there have been hate crimes committed against Jewish people, such as assault and vandalism of personal property, and murders, including the attack at the Jewish Museum in Brussels in May 2014.



tweets vicki kirby

Date of publication: Throughout 2014, expulsion in March 2016

Media Outlet: Twitter, account removed.

Description of the antisemitic content: 

Vicki Kirbi, vice-chair of UK Labour party’s Woking branch, suggested Adolf Hitler might be a “Zionist God” and that Jews had “big noses” in some tweets dating back 2014.

About the source: 

UK Labour Party member Vicki Kirby, our March Ousted Troll of the Month, was suspended was suspended in February for the second time, pending an investigation into a series of antisemitic tweets. Because of the same antisemitic tirades, Ms Kirby was first suspended in 2014, when she was running as a Labour candidate in Woking. After an investigation, she was reinstated with a warning about her future conduct and was then appointed chair of Woking Labour Party's executive committee.

Myth Debunked:  

Kirby’s tweets promote a false sense of antagonism towards Jewish people. For example, Kirby places the actions of the Israeli government on the hands of the Jewish people even though Judaism is separate from the actions of Israel as a political state. Additionally, Kirby essentially expresses that Jewish people exaggerate when they make claims about being discriminated against (antisemitism), when in fact it is no exaggeration since Jewish people are no stranger to being victims of hate crimes such as physical assault, vandalism, or murder, as recently shown in Europe.



UK former mayor

Date of publication: February 2016

Description of the antisemitic content: 

Khadim Hussain, former mayor of Bradford (UK), posted an article on his Facebook page titled “ISIS Is Working on Mossad/CIA Plan to Create Greater Israel” with a comment saying “Their actions are self evident!”. In a different post, he complained that the deaths of millions of Africans are not taught in schools but “your school education system only tells you about Anne Frank and the six million Zionists that were killed by Hitler”. 

About the source:

Khadim Hussain, former mayor of Bradford (UK) and Labour councillor, quit the party at the end of March 2016 over what he believes are "unfounded allegations of anti-Semitism".

Myth Debunked:  

The comments made by Hussain are a classic example of stereotype against the Israeli State. It is the standard depiction of how conspiracy theorists claim “Greater Israel” will conquer the Levant. Its use is often explicitly antisemitic, such as in an Iranian state edition of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion. In general, stereotypes against the politics of the Israeli government often end up falsely accusing the Jewish people for Israel’s actions even though the Jewish religion is clearly separate from the actions of a political state.

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