Until the Left's increasing anti-Israel stance following the June 1967 War, it represented the reflected the consensual pro-Zionist view within the British Labour Party.
In April 1983, amid a burgeoning sentiment on the party's Left that the party should sever its connection with Poale Zion, female members of Poale Zion were prevented from attending an International Women's Day seminar at the Greater London Council (GLC)'s County Hall. (Ken Livingstone was, of course, at that time leader of the GLC)
Then, in May 1985, a band of leftist Israel-haters in the party, who had been pressing for Poale Zion to be disaffiliated from the party, submitted a formal motion to that end.
Among the sponsors of that putrid proposal was Islington MP Jeremy Corbyn and several Islington (as well as Brent) councillors, the Bennite activist Tariq Ali and the gay activist Peter Tatchell as well as a number of rabid class warriors on the benches of the House of Commons, and MEP Richard Balfe, now retired and a life peer, who joined the Conservative Party in 2002.
The first name on the list of sponsors was Tony Banks, an MP who became a life peer twenty years later but did not long live to enjoy it.
Then came, in this order:
Ron Brown MP
Harry Cohen MP
Jeremy Corbyn MP
Stuart Holland MP
Joan Maynard MP
Bob Clay MP
Dafydd Elis Thomas MP (Plaid Cymru; now a life peer)
The resolutions passed with ease.
Here's a screenshot, taken from the Twitter page of British international relations academic Dr James Vaughan (#Equus on the Buses).
But as Dr Vaughan has also reminded us, J.L. (Larry) Whitty, also a future life peer, who was general secretary of the Labour Party, assured Reginald Freeson MP, who was a co-chair of Poale Zion (and a moderate leftist who opposed the 1982 Israeli invasion of Lebanon):
"On the 'totally unconstitutional ' nature of moves in some CLPs [Constituency Labour Parties] to disaffiliate Poale Zion. you can also rest assured of my own personal concern that legitimate critiques of the policies ofthe Israeli government and their supporters should not be translated into racist and anti-semitic attacks in this country or elsewhere within a socialist and internationalist Party."Note, especially, the resolution supporting
"the Palestinian people in their struggle for a democratic, secular state in the whole of Palestine"For the record: there is, then, no doubt what the man who, but for Boris Johnson, may at the 2019 General Election have become Britain's prime minister, harboured in his heart for the little Jewish State.
No less than former Young Liberal firebrand, Peter (now Lord) Hain, who not so long ago also entertained hopes of leading the Labour Party and the British nation, he sought its eradication.