A dispute about antisemitism broke out after an SNP party activist had been discovered sharing offensive anti-Israel material
According to The Scotsman the dispute involves Amjed Hussain who has been pictured with Nicola Sturgeon and other leading SNP figures at the party’s manifesto launch. He also has been campaigning with Nationalist candidates and parliamentarians, but most concerning is that he is a Facebook friend of several government ministers.
Many were therefore angered by what Mr Hussain was sharing and the SNP instructed its campaign teams to ensure Mr Hussain was no longer part of the election after his online activity was discovered.
Mr Hussain shared a photo, which stated “Israel has no history – only a criminal record”. He also shared a video claiming that the 11 September, 2001 terrorist attacks were an operation carried out by Mossad, the Israel national intelligence agency. Another post shared by Mr Hussain linked Islamic State to Israel stated, “ISIS is the only terrorist organisation that will travel 2,000 miles to attack Brussels, but can’t travel 52 miles to attack Israel – because the dog does not bite its own tail.”
Such conspiracy theories involving the Jewish state are a form of paranoid antisemitism that is similar to the 20th Century conspiracies that Jews were behind the First World War for their own gain.
Mr Hussain is a party activist but not a Party member, yet this did not stop him campaigning with prominent politicians. In April he was campaigning with Alyn Smith MEP, Jim Eadie, the candidate for the Edinburgh Southern seat, and the Catalan foreign minister Raul Romeva.
Criticism came from the co-founder of Glasgow Friends of Israel who said, “I have seen some pretty grotesque material from him plus quite a few photographs of him with prominent people from the SNP… I find the two together quite disturbing.” Also the Conservative politician Murdo Fraser stated, “This is quite clearly antisemitic. Why the party would want to be associated with highly offensive individuals is a mystery.”
The SNP issued a response, “Mr Hussain is not an SNP member. These views are not acceptable, and certainly don’t reflect those of the SNP, and we have instructed local campaign teams to ensure this individual takes no further part in the election campaign.”
Mr Hussain seemed completely unrepentant, “I want people to have a discussion. I am questioning things.” He also claimed, “They are somebody else’s posts. I am just sharing them.”