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Dave Rich @daverich1
, 7 tweets, 2 min read Read on Twitter
Some people are saying Ken Stern, an author of the IHRA antisemitism definition, thinks Labour was right to change it and write their own Code of Conduct. I've got a paper Stern wrote in 2010 on the definition- let's see what he says (spoiler: it's not what the Canary claims) /1
The paper is on p.32 of this collection, from a conference I was at in 2010… /2
Firstly, Stern didn't write the IHRA definition. He helped to write its predecessor for an EU agency called the EUMC but he was not its sole author: he names 8 other Jewish community reps & academics who contributed & then says "What we produced was changed somewhat by EUMC" /3
He calls the definition "a useful tool for identifying and analyzing antisemitism" & " a workable, non-ideological approach to task of identifying antisemitism" & says governments &media regulatory bodies should use it. He explicitly says it should not be amended in any way: /4
"In my view, attempts to change the definition would give away all the gains made by having a uniform definition for five years, would give a great opening for those who would want to scuttle it rather than improve it, and to open this can of worms would be a terrible mistake" /5
His only caveat is that he says it is inappropriate for universities to use it for certain types of anti-Israel speech, because he sees campuses as a special 'free speech' environment. But for everyone else, his message is clear: the definition should be used more than it is. /6
And beware, Corbynistas: Stern also says that in his view accusing Israel of apartheid and boycotting it are linked to antisemitism. So maybe he's not the best champion for your cause. /End.
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