Another Fine Mess
Iain McNicol –v- Tony Greenstein
another fine mess
|Having done his best to lose Labour the General Electon 'gormless' McNicol pursues a Witchhunt in his own shambolic way|
|Bogus letter that McNicol's legal team relied on|
|Actual letter sent to Tony Greenstein with bundle of documents|
On the 30th May I had an investigation meeting conducted by the Southern Regional Organiser Harry Gregson. The Transcript of our Exchange can be viewed here.[See also Labour’s Inquisition – from the banal to the mundane] Suffice to say Gregson did not have a clue as to what it was that he was supposed to be investigating.
|The JLM's whining plea that my criticism of them would 'further exasperate (sic!) the problem of anti-Semitism in the party.'|
I therefore decided on 13th May to apply, under the Data Protection Act, for copies of all documents relating to me to be disclosed by the Labour Party. Suffice to say the 40 days allowed for by the DPA was exceeded and it was only on 15th July, 60 days later, that I was supplied with about 300 pages of documents. Many of these documents were either duplicates of each other or correspondence that I already had.
A number of the documents were redacted, i.e. blacked out. Correspondents’ names were deleted and often large chunks of text were deleted and in the case of 4 documents everything was blacked out. What, I wondered, did they have to hide? In some cases it was possible to guess the identity of the informant. In other cases they blacked out a name in the header and then kindly left it at the end of the document.
|McNicol's idea of disclosure|
|McNicol's idea of a full and frank disclosure - the question is what is he hiding?|
At other times, it was obvious from the context and content who the correspondent was. E.g. it is difficult not to recognise the whining voice of the Jewish Labour Movement’s Chair, Jeremy Newmark, complaining about my criticism of the little racists and urging McNicol to speed up the expulsion!
Nonetheless in a significant number of cases, it was impossible to discern what was being hidden. It was also clear from some of the comments left in that many of the remarks were prejudicial asides from the very Labour Party staff who were supposed to be impartially administering the process.
I therefore wrote to the Labour Party demanding that there be full disclosure. Suffice to say I received no response (Labour Party bureaucrats rarely engage in correspondence. From some of the correspondence it is clear that they debate among themselves whether they should response. This is quite understandable as they don’t see themselves as accountable to anyone.
I therefore decided, having taken legal advice via the Bar Pro Bono Unit that I would initiate legal proceedings on 8th May against McNicol for full disclosure of the redacted documents. On 22nd June the case was listed for a hearing on August 8th.
|Leaks to the national press about my suspension - at the same time as telling me nothing|
Until the 28th July, just over a week before the hearing, I had heard nothing. ‘Crooked’ McNicol was, I assumed, still recovering from the shock of the election result that he’d done so much to prevent. On 4th August McNicol’s solicitors whacked in a 9 page witness statement, a bill of costs for £7,000 (McNicol’s legal beavers don’t come cheap) and two files containing some 350+ pages of exhibits. All were sent via 2 massive email files.
I noticed on the tail of the email a message ‘William Sturges LLP does not accept service of any court proceedings or other documents by email’. I therefore sent them an email informing them that Tony Greenstein also doesn’t accept service of court documents by email, especially when there are 350 pages of them to print off. Suffice to say they sent them by snail mail, arriving on 6th August, i.e. less than 2 days before the hearing!
|Satirical take on the logical implications of Labour's false anti-Semitism witch hunt is entirely lost on McNicol's humourless minions|
Going through the witness statement I noticed a curious thing.. In Para. 8 it stated that ‘The Party replied to the SAR on 10 November 2016.’ This was rather curious since they had responded on 15th July, some 4 months earlier. Consulting their Bundle, there was a letter, not much different from the one I had received, dated 10.11.16. Even more curious, it was addressed to me at an address I haven’t lived at for 14 years!
When I first moved to this address in 1993 I had also been suspended from the Labour Party along with about 30 others. After my one year suspension was up I briefly rejoined the party and received an agenda to a meeting of Woodingdean LP which announced that the Ward was supporting some local racist campaign to get rid of Gypsies from the local park. Zionism in the Labour Party party is bad enough without a dose of anti-gypsy racism too.
I know that the Progress Right and people like Cllrs. Poison Penn and Emma Daniels, who parade their opposition to ‘anti-Semitism’ (i.e. support for anti-Palestinian racism) are only too happy to go along with anti-Gypsy/Roma racism but I wasn’t prepared to remain a member of a party that tolerated this racism. Although it is convenient to forget it today, since the Holocaust is treated as a Jewish only affair, but proportionately as many Gypsies/Roma were exterminated by the Nazis as Jews. Clearly my old address had remained on file and equally clearly McNicol’s incompetent buffoons in the Compliance Unit had somehow managed to swap my old for my current address, whilst forgetting that they had already mailed out a Bundle of Documents.
|Letter to The Times|
Either that or the Labour Party had simply forged the letter of 10 November as I initially suspected. Either way Jay Sharda’s tortured explanation for why the documents were disclosed 4 months after they had actually been disclosed was pure waffle. However it wasn’t until I emailed the letter to William Sturges and the Court that McNicol’s solicitors woke up to the fact that their whole case was based on the wrong set of documents!
Suffice to say that it was a rather shamefaced solicitor and barrister who approached me to agree on an adjournment which I had already indicated I would be applying for as even I find it difficult to assimilate 350 pages of documents and a torturous witness statement at less than 2 days notice. In fact I did pen a response to a witness statement was dishonest and dissembling.
To give a flavour of Sharda’s witness statement take the following example from para. 21(b):
The Claimant also openly regards Muslims as "the route [sic] cause of our [the Party's] problems"  and talks with his followers about how it is "tempting" to shoot a Jewish Labour Movement staff member for being a Zionist [332 - 333].
|A humorous exchange on Twitter becomes a plot to murder the fragrant Ella Rose|
Not only am I an anti-Semite but I am also Islamaphobic and to cap it all I want to shoot a member of the JLM staff (its Director, the fragrant Ella Rose). Clearly if these accusations are true then I deserve to be expelled. Indeed ‘Crooked’ McNicol deserves to be censored for not having ensured that I was expelled months ago. But what is the truth of these allegations?
|Letter to the Telegraph after article insinuating antiSemitism|
Sharda referred to two documents, the first on pages 315-6. This is an email of 3 May 2016 to Iain McNicol from me. It was entitled ‘Rule Change re Anti-Semitism – Proposal Which Should Satisfy All Parties’. I realise that McNicol’s minions are a few sandwiches short of a picnic, as well as being humourless, but a proposal from me which suggests that all applicants to the Labour Party should have their membership vetted by the Israeli Embassy might just alert them to the fact that this was satire. Clearly not.
In the email I take McNicol and co. to task for the fact that their concern with ‘anti-Semitism’ revolves around the use of language. They reduce the Holocaust to a set of acceptable phrases and use of terms like ‘Final Solution’ is verboten. Their concern is not with the lessons of the Holocaust but treating it as some form of sacred icon. In that way they never draw any parallels between Nazi Germany and European fascism and what is happening in Israel today.
|Labour supporting Telegraph prints the Compliance Unit's leaks|
|The Telegraph has second thoughts|
For example Naz Shah MP used the words ‘transport’ – apparently this is anti-Semitic as it might refer to the transport the Nazis used to deport Holocaust victims. Whilst the Labour Right turns a blind eye to actual living examples of racism in Israel, which they portray as a democratic state, they examine under the microscope any deviation from language norms for signs that they might be ‘anti-Semitic’. So a state where chants of ‘Death to the Arabs’ is a norm or where Palestinians have their houses and villages demolished for Jewish settlers is held out to be a paragon of western democracy. But if you put a syllable wrong when it comes to the Holocaust, if you don’t pay due deference to language whilst ignoring the real lessons of what happened in Europe then you are classified as ‘anti-Semitic’ by these racist hypocrites. One might have thought though that a well paid solicitor might have been put on notice that satire is used as a way of highlighing the idiocy of his client’s views. Obviously not.
The second example is even more ludicrous (if that is possible). Readers may remember the Al Jazeera programme, The Lobby, about dirty tricks by the Israeli Embassy, the JLM and Labour Friends of Israel in the Labour Party last January. In one of the clips the juvenile Director of the JLM Ella Rose is captured as saying ‘I’m a Zionist shoot me’. On Twitter a few of us therefore agreed how tempting this invitation was! Only a complete fool or idiot would take such a comment seriously.
|The Times withdrew its insinuation of anti-Semitism|
At the hearing yesterday, having received my response to their witness statement at 4 am, McNicol’s minions were suitably subdued having got everything including the documentation wrong. At the hearing itself Directions were agreed for the filing of documents. The Labour Party legal representatives made themselves look pretty stupid because the Labour Party has no record of sending me a bundle of documents in May 2016! So it is up to me to supply them with a list of what they sent to me. Utterly absurd but McNicol’s witch hunters are not merely reactionary apologists for racism but extremely incompetent ones too. I therefore made an application that regardless of the eventual outcome of the case, the costs of the attendance of the Labour Party’s legal representatives should be borne by the Labour Party not me. Although their barrister resisted my application the Judge agree with the application and she ruled that no order for costs would be made. McNicol and co. will therefore pay at least £1,000 out of members’ subs because John Stolliday and the Compliance Unit are incompetent fools.
Despite the attempt of the Labour Party legal team prior to today’s hearing to have the whole application rejected, in the end they were forced to agree to a timetable over the next 3 months for the service and preparation of documents.
Thus the stage will be set by October 16th or thereafter for battle to be joined on whether or not the Labour Party is allowed to drive a coach and horses through the Data Protection Act by supplying blacked out documents to protect the identity of its staff and informants. Watch this space!
And thanks to Becky and Anne from Brighton and Hove Momentum who accompanied me and provided me with moral support!