BBC Panorama on political interference and leaked emails


In a March 2018 email, Milne called to investigate the party's review process regarding anti-Semitic complaints, telling Labour's then-head of disputes, Sam Matthews, that the proceedings were tainted by politics.

The Party slammed the BBC's choice of producer, John Ware, as "unsuitable", noting that Ware's "record of public political hostility to Jeremy Corbyn and his leadership of the Labour Party, as well as a series of controversial articles and programs on the Muslim community, means he can not be regarded as fair or even-handed on British politics".

In one case, where an ex-staffer, Michael Creighton, said he had been laughed at by communications director Seamus Milne, a spokesman said: "The Labour Party dispute this conversation ever took place... this allegation is false and malicious".

The party accused former Sun and BBC reporter John Ware of being biased.

"Something's going wrong, and we're muddling up political disputes with racism..." "Second thing I suggested was that it would be the right time for Jeremy Corbyn as leader, to make a significant speech on the issue of the Middle East, particularly saying that Israel had a right to exist".

"I think we need to change the way we investigate these systems".

While there may no longer be hope, there remains a very clear way forward for those in Labour who still wish to show that they are on top of the problem.

A Labour spokesman accused the broadcaster of "pre-determining" the outcome of its investigation.

He told BBC Radio 4's Today programme: "I consider it every day and I grill myself every day because it is so hard to stay in this party".

The spokesman said: "The Panorama programme and the BBC have engaged in deliberate and malicious representations created to mislead the public". These disaffected former officials include those who have always opposed Jeremy Corbyn's leadership, worked to actively undermine it, and have both personal and political axes to grind.

"This throws into doubt their credibility as sources".

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Mr Watson said the programme was a "watershed moment" and made clear his displeasure with the party's response to it.

It is no longer enough to issue a few angry tweets or to tell people like me privately that they understand why we left the Labour Party or that they disagree with Corbyn and the people around him.

"In line with those, the Labour Party has been given the opportunity to respond to the allegations". We stand in solidarity with Jewish people, and we're taking decisive action to root out antisemitism from our movement and society.

The Panorama investigation revealed only 15 people have been expelled from the party for Jew hate in nearly four years.

Labour whistleblowers claimed in a new BBC Panorama documentary that Corbyn was personally copied on emails in which Labour's general secretary Jennie Formby ostensibly pledged to meddle in a case involving a party activist who blamed Jews for being responsible for the slave trade.

Labour described the programme as "seriously inaccurate" and "politically one-sided".

He added: "Many organisations circle the wagons when they are challenged and that is the wrong approach". The Panorama team instead pre-determined an answer to the question posed by the programme's title.

"We know there's a massive backlog in dealing with complaints and we know there has been interference from the leader's officer and his closest allies in dealing with those people".

Labour members have even been arrested on suspicion of racial hatred and the party now faces a full official inquiry for racism by the Equality and Human Rights Commission.

He told BBC Radio 4's Today programme: "I think we have got to take decisive action".