John Stewart writes: The anti-semitism smear campaign against the Labour left has seen a dangerous escalation with the dismissal from his employment of Stan Keable.
Formerly a member of Hammersmith CLP, Keable was expelled from the Labour Party in 2017 for his association with the organisation Labour Party Marxists. Now he has been dismissed from his employment with Hammersmith & Fulham Council after being filmed discussing Zionism at a public demonstration.
When the Board of Deputies of British Jews called its anti-Labour protest in Parliament Square on 26th March, Stan Keable was one of those who attended the counter-protest called by Jewish Voice for Labour. While the Board and the Jewish Leadership Council falsely accused Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour left of hatred of Jews, Keable and JVL were pointing out that criticism of Israel is not anti-semitic, that Corbyn’s Labour opposes all forms of racism including prejudice against Jews and that the Zionist organisation in 1930s Germany had entered into an agreement with the Nazi government to facilitate the emigration of German Jews to Palestine.
Keable handed out leaflets at the demonstration and talked with protesters. One of these conversations was secretly recorded and spread on social media. Fulham Tory MP, Greg Hands, publicly demanded action against Keable and Hammersmith & Fulham immediately suspended him and then dismissed him on 21st April. Astonishingly, Hammersmith & Fulham state that “in attending a counter-demonstration …. Keable knowingly increased the possibility of being challenged about his views and subsequently proceeded to express views that were in breach of the council’s equality, diversity and inclusion policy and the council’s code of conduct.”
Stan Keable was one of those who attended the Briefing AGM in 2012 to support the LRC takeover and we have little time for his Labour Party Marxists organisation. But the implications of his dismissal are very dangerous for all socialists. It means that employers, in this case Labour-run Hammersmith & Fulham Council, can dismiss workers because they do not approve of their political views. Keable is fundraising to challenge his political victimisation at an employment tribunal. Socialists and supporters of free speech should support him.