Bristol University sociology professor who quit Labour party amid anti-Semitism row calls for an ‘end’ of Zionism in online debate – sparking calls for him to be sacked
- Professor David Miller made inflammatory comments at online campaign event
- Accused of ‘Soviet-style antisemitism’ and ‘proselytising hatred towards Jews’
- Suspended from Labour after accusing Keir Starmer of taking ‘Zionist’ money
A Bristol University professor called for the ‘end of Zionism’ and said Israel is ‘trying to exert its will all over the world’ during an astonishing Zoom tirade that sparked calls for him to be sacked.
Professor David Miller, who was suspended from Labour last year and later quit after an antisemitism row sparked by his claims that Sir Keir Starmer had taken ‘Zionist’ money, made the comments at an online campaign event.
The sociology lecturer was accused of ‘Soviet-style antisemitism’ and ‘proselytising hatred towards Jews’ with his assertion that there is a ‘global Zionist conspiracy against the left’.
In the video, filmed on Saturday, he also complained about being ‘attacked and complained about’ by Bristol University’s Jewish Society and the Union of Jewish Students.
Professor David Miller, who was suspended from Labour last year after accusing its leader Sir Keir Starmer of taking ‘Zionist’ money, made the comments at an online campaign event
Professor Miller, speaking to an online audience on the weekend, said: ‘This is an all-out onslaught by the Israeli government on the left globally.
How conspiracy theorist was suspended from Labour for claims Keir Starmer was swayed by ‘Zionist money’
Bristol University lecturer David Miller was suspended from Labour last year after he claimed Sir Keir Starmer did not want to conduct a proper probe into a leaked antisemitism report because he was ‘he was in receipt of money from the Zionist movement’.
The report slamming the party’s handling of antisemitism complaints under Jeremy Corbyn was leaked to the media prior to being submitted to an inquiry by the Equalities and Human Rights Commission (EHRC).
In a YouTube video, Professor Miller said: “We are obviously not going to get a proper investigation of this by Comrade Starmer or by Lisa Nandy – who have been in receipt of money from the Zionist movement, from Trevor Chinn.
“And connections between the Zionist movement and the current leadership of Labour Party – it’s not the only people they have connections with.
“Many other super rich people have given them money, hedge fund owners and the like – but a significant element of support has come from the Zionist movement.”
He was suspended from Labour and later quit.
‘It’s not just something that’s happened in Britain. It’s also happened in France and Germany before it got to the UK, and also in the US.
‘The Labour Party is a mere detail in this attempt by Israelis to impose their will all over the world.
‘It’s not enough to say Zionism is racism, Israel is a settler colonial society…
‘The aim of this is not only to say things but to end settler colonialism in Palestine, to end Zionism as a functioning ideology of the word.’
The comments – which were made at a Campaign for Free Speech event on Saturday – immediately provoked an outcry.
‘This is Soviet antisemitism, the assertion that there’s a global Zionist conspiracy against the left,’ one Twitter user wrote.
David Glover Roberts tweeted: ‘Racism! This person is proselytising hatred towards Jews. If his employer has any moral fibre, they will fire him immediately.
‘If they fail to fire him, then this becomes an institution profiting on racism.’
Meanwhile, a third Twitter user wrote: ‘This would not be out of place in a 1930 antisemites playbook. It’s utterly abhorrent – is this hatred spread in your name?’
Professor Miller also went on to complain about students who had complained to Bristol University about his comments, the Jewish Chronicle reported.
‘Those kind of complaints are being made over the country – one against me in Bristol and there’s been one made in Warwick, again by UJS [university Jewish society] and several others.
‘We will continue to see this drive to stop anyone speaking out against Palestine or having any critical account of Zionism as racism, as settler colonialism.…’
In 2019, he was criticised by an antisemitism charity after giving a lecture to students which identified the ‘Zionist movement (parts of)’ as one of the ‘five pillars’ of Islamophobia.
The sociology lecturer was accused of ‘Soviet-style antisemitism’ and ‘proselytising hatred towards Jews’ with his assertion that there is a ‘global Zionist conspiracy against the left’
A University of Bristol spokesman said: ‘We are committed to making our University an inclusive place for all students. We have been working closely with Jewish students to understand their specific concerns and worries.
‘A key outcome from these discussions was the adoption, in full, of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) working definition of antisemitism.
‘We also seek at all times to abide by both our Free Speech Policy and our Public Sector Equality Duties. Specifically, we are steadfast in our commitment to freedom of speech and to the rights of all our students and staff to discuss difficult and sensitive topics.’
In the video, filmed on Saturday, he also complained about being ‘attacked and complained about’ by Bristol University’s Jewish Society and the Union of Jewish Students. Pictured is Bristol’s Wills Memorial building