A couple of days ago, Londoners elected Sadiq Khan to be their new Mayor. Khan’s election is receiving a great deal of attention because he is Muslim.
But what I find interesting about Khan is how he has positioned himself as a voice of moderation within The Labour Party. Let’s face it. The Labour Party has become a cesspool of anti-Semitism. In a time where Labour has gone out of its way to alienate Jewish supporters makes Khan’s Jewish outreach all the more fascinating. Last September, Khan wrote, “I want my election as Mayor to represent that harmony – a Mayor who is Muslim fighting for the interests of a large Jewish community and all minority communities in London.” Khan repeatedly criticized Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn’s failure to confront anti-Semitism stating that Corbyn’s links to Palestinian terror groups could promote hatred against Britsh Jews. Last month, Khan said that Corbyn and other prominent Labour Party politicians needed to be “trained about what anti-Semitism is.” With his election, Khan has certainly made himself a threat to Corbyn’s leadership as he made clear by not attending Khan’s inauguration. In his first official act of office, Khan attended a Holocaust Remembrance Ceremony.
Let me put it another way, how many Muslims have seen fit to publicly oppose the anti-Israel BDS Movement and be called out on it by one-time Saddam Hussein apologist George Galloway? If George Galloway doesn’t like you that should automatically elevate him or her a couple of points.
Still, I proceed with caution. In March, it was discovered he followed the pro-Hamas Electronic Intifada website on Twitter. While Khan unfollowed the account when it was drawn to his attention, the U.K. Spectator noted, “Still no explanation of why Khan followed the account in the first place…”
Nevertheless, I view Sadiq Khan with guarded optimism. If a Muslim politician can lead the fight against anti-Semitism then perhaps there is hope for both Britain and for humanity.
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