Watch: Ken Livingstone spends 10 minutes talking about Hitler in rambling TV interview about Labour anti-Semitism

Andy Wells
Freelance Writer

Ken Livingstone once again brought up Hitler during a rambling television interview about the anti-semitism crisis in Labour this morning.

The former London mayor, who resigned from the party this year over his comments on the Jewish community, refused to apologise for saying that Hitler supported Zionism.

Livingstone claimed he said Hitler did a deal with German Zionists in 1933 – adding that he was not a Zionist himself.

Asked whether he stood by his previous statement, he told Good Morning Britain (GMB): ‘Absolutely. I said that in the 1930s Hitler supported Zionism.

Ken Livingstone rambled for 10 minutes about Hitler yet again on a live TV interview (Rex)

‘Not because he liked German Jews, but because he did a deal with the German Zionists. There’s a complete difference. He did a deal.’

Echoing Donald Trump’s ‘fake news’ assertions, the 73-year-old added: ‘This has dragged on for two years.

‘And still no one has asked me what I actually said. It has been lie after lie all over the media.


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‘There were claims I said Jews were like Nazis. This is the problem with fake news.

‘Nobody has ever found a shred of evidence I’ve said any of this nonsense.’

Livingstone told GMB that the anti-Semitism row should not concern Labour the day after the party finally adopted the international definition of anti-Semitism with a closed that ensured it would not ‘undermine freedom of expression on Israel’.

The former London mayor said Labour’s anti-Semitism crisis was a ‘conspiracy’ against Jeremy Corbyn (Good Morning Britain)

He said: ‘No one should have any worries about this stuff. Anti-Semitism is about people who hate and loathe Jews. It’s not about criticising the Israeli Government’s policy towards the Palestinians.’

He added: ‘People who hate Jews blacks or homosexuals are never going to join the Labour Party because we have always been defending the rights of people like that.’

Livingstone also claimed that anti-Semitism allegations against Labour and Jeremy Corbyn are part of a conspiracy by ‘the establishment, great corporations and the super-rich’.

He insisted he is not anti-Semitic himself, saying: ‘The simple fact is, just before I resigned from the Labour Party, a senior official told me they’d found about 50 members who had tweeted something anti-Semitic.

The Labour leader has been accused of being an anti-Semite for various comments unearthed over summer (Rex)

‘That’s one in out of every 10,000. When I was Mayor of London anti-Semitic incidents halved.’

Labour has been rocked by claims it is now an anti-Semitic party, while leader Jeremy Corbyn has faced accusations himself that he is an ‘anti-Semite’ and a ‘racist’ by Labour MP Dame Margaret Hodge.

A senior member of Labour’s shadow cabinet has now urged Jewish critics to ‘come back into the room‘ and engage with the party over its approach to anti-Semitism.

Baroness Chakrabarti’s call came after Labour’s ruling National Executive Committee (NEC) agreed to incorporate the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s (IHRA) definition of anti-Semitism, including all its examples of prejudice against Jews, in the party’s code of conduct.

Labour voted to adopt the IHRA anti-Semitism definition in full on Tuesday despite protests from Corbyn supporters (Rex)

But Jewish groups hit out after the move was accompanied by the statement that said the party will ensure the changes do ‘not in any way undermine freedom of expression’ on Israel or the rights of Palestinians.

Dame Margaret Hodge, said the leader had “sullied” the adoption of the IHRA definition by trying to amend it by saying it was not anti-Semitic to describe Israel as racist.

But Lady Chakrabarti, who conducted an inquiry into anti-Semitism for Mr Corbyn, insisted that the NEC’s additional statement did not dilute its commitment to fighting the problem.

Labour has been rocked by claims it is infested with anti-Semitism (Rex)

The shadow attorney general told BBC Radio 4’s Today: ‘There was no sullying. The words were not a caveat, were not a dilution; the words are true, which is that accepting these examples, in my view, in no way negates reasonable free speech around these difficult issues around Israel and Palestine.’

Labour Friends of Israel (LFI) said the attempted amendment showed that Mr Corbyn was ‘part of the problem, not the solution’.

Labour Against Anti-Semitism said the move ‘appears to be about protecting the freedom of racists to present vile views’.