Corbyn and the Munich massacre

Jeremy Corbyn, the leaders of U.K`s main opposition party, has been accused of laying wreath on the graves of Palestinians terrorists who masterminded the 1972 Munich massacre, as his party is embroiled in a deepening anti- semitism row.

Background

The controversial events took place at an event at the Palestinian martyrs’ cemetery in Tunisia, during a visit by Corbyn in 2014, a year before he became the party’s leader. There is a memorial to the victims of the 1985 bombing at the cemetery, although it is described as being 15 yards away from where Corbyn is pictured.

Eleven Israelis were killed in Munich in 1972, when Palestinian militants took Israeli Olympic team members hostage at a hotel in an attack which played out over live television.

 

Analysis

A couple of meters behind where Corbyn and the group of people are standing are four graves of senior members of the Palestinian Liberation Organisation. One of those belongs to Atef Bseiso, the PLO’s head of intelligence, who was assassinated outside a Paris hotel in 1992, and was allegedly killed by the Israeli secret service in revenge for the 1972 attack.

Another is the grave of Salah Khalaf, also known as Abu Iyad, who was the second in command in the PLO at the time of his death and is the most senior Palestinian figure buried in the Tunisian cemetery. Khalaf, who is believed to have been a key figure behind Black September, was killed in Tunis in 1991, alongside two other figures who are also buried in the graveyard.

 

Assessment

Our assessment is that controversy emerges at a time when Labour is embroiled in a row about antisemitism and whether the party will adopt in full, with all its 11  examples, the definition produced by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance. We feel that the contentious ones relate to  four examples which questions the loyalty of Jews who support Israel.