Labour is responsible for rise of softcore Holocaust denial Dr Deborah Lipstadt

Rachel Weisz as Deborah Lipstadt in the film Denial Dr Lipstadt said that Mr Corbyn is at best “blind to overt manifestations of anti-Semitism” The Labour Party is responsible for the rise of “softcore Holocaust denial”, Dr Deborah Lipstadt has said.The American academic won a high-profile legal battle against the British historian David Irving in 2000 after he sued her for libel when she declared him a Holocaust denier. She said that anti-Semitism that has become “embedded” in the Labour Party under Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership, adding that it has become more socially acceptable to “make a crack” at a dinner party about Jews.  As a result of her high-profile legal battle against Irving, she said: “The kind of Holocaust denial that I fought in the courtroom – what I call hardcore Holocaust denial – has been seriously weakened. And people who engage in it are seen as at best loony, at worst hateful anti-Semites, falsifiers of truth and so on.“But what we see today more of is softcore Holocaust denial. Softcore Holocaust denial is where everything becomes a genocide. Softcore Holocaust denial is where people say ‘I’m so tired of hearing about this, why am I always hearing about the Holocaust, too much about the Holocaust, oh you Jews and the Holocaust, jokes about the Holocaust…’” The Daily Telegraph's coverage of the Irving v Penguin Books Ltd High Court case in 2000 Dr Lipstadt went on to say how Mr Corbyn is at best “blind to overt manifestations of anti-Semitism”, citing his questioning of a London council’s decision to destroy an anti-Semitic mural which depicted a group of Jewish bankers counting money. Mr Corbyn later apologised for his comments.  “To talk about a genocide, or to talk about the Nazi-like tactics of the Israeli army is ludicrous,” she said. “Every army makes mistakes, every army does things wrong. There are things the Israeli army does wrong, but to compare it to Nazis is softcore denial.”Dr Lipstadt, who is the Dorot Professor of Holocaust Studies at Emory University in Atlanta, said she believes anti-Semitism and “softcore Holocaust denial” are both on the rise in the UK, in part due to the Labour Party. Dr Lipstadt said that Mr Corbyn is at best “blind to overt manifestations of anti-Semitism” Speaking at the Holocaust Educational Trust’s annual conference in Westminster, London, she described how “softcore Holocaust denial” can also crop up in connection with Israel, where people go beyond criticism of policies and strategy and begin to draw comparisons with Nazi Germany. The Daily Telegraph’s coverage of the Irving v Penguin Books Ltd High Court case in 2000 Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. “You have a former mayor here in London [Ken Livingstone] who would talk about the cooperation between the Zionists and the Nazis,” she said.“He took one little historical fact and blew it up into something that never existed, completely twisted the truth. Irrespective of how you feel about him politically – its historically rubbish. “But it’s more than that – it’s a form of anti- Semitism. That’s the kind of softcore denial I worry about much more. It’s subtly anti-Semitic and its clearly denial because it rewrites history.”Mr Livingstone was suspended from Labour in 2016 for claiming Adolf Hitler supported Zionism in the Thirties. He resigned from the Labour Party in May, but insisted he was in no way guilty of anti-Semitism. Rachel Weisz as Deborah Lipstadt in the film Denial She said that while anti-Semitism has always existed on the right of politics as well, she said: “It has become more acceptable to have those kind of attitudes, its become more embedded in the Labour Party.”A Labour Party spokesperson said: “Jeremy Corbyn has been absolutely clear that he is a militant opponent of anti-Semitism and is committed to driving it out of politics and our society. Labour has deep roots in the Jewish community and is campaigning to increase support and confidence in our Party among Jewish people in the UK.“Any complaints of anti-Semitism, including Holocaust denial, are taken extremely seriously and are fully investigated, and appropriate disciplinary action, in line with Party rules and procedures.  “Labour’s new General Secretary Jennie Formby has made it her first priority to speed up and strengthen our procedures and to develop a programme of political education to create deeper awareness and understanding about all forms of antisemitism.”