Emeritus professor says ‘Zionist takeover’ of Labour led to her call to ‘blow up’ JLM event

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Emeritus professor says ‘Zionist takeover’ of Labour led to her call to ‘blow up’ JLM event

Harriet Bradley of Bristol University's Sociology department apologises for 'awful' tweet calling for attack on next month's Jewish Labour Movement conference

Lee Harpin is the Jewish News's political editor

Harriet Bradley
Harriet Bradley

The Emeritus Professor of Sociology at the University of Bristol who called for “someone to blow up the venue” while the Jewish Labour Movement hosts its annual conference has apologised “to anybody hurt or frightened by my tweet.”

But Harriet Bradley, a former Labour councillor who resigned after facing an antisemitism probe, claimed her “joke” was an “expression of grief and anger” over the “takeover” of Keir Starmer’s party by “a Zionist faction.”

Bradley,78, who has had numerous academic works published, wrote her “blow up the venue” post in response to another incendiary message which suggested the JLM event on January 14th, was where “every racist, nonce and shithouse in Britain” would be.

Earlier this week JLM announced next month’s event,Emeritus professor at Bristol University calls to ‘blow up’ JLM conference which features some of the party’s biggest names as speakers including Wes Streeting, Peter Mandleson, Margaret Hodge, Luciana Berger, Ruth Anderson and Louise Ellman.

Bradley had later joined the University of the West of England as a professor of women’s employment, prior to her retirement.

She had resigned from her role on Bristol City Council in 2020 on ill-health grounds after previously being investigated by Labour over a “right kind of Jews” social media post.

In a statement she said:”I would like to apologise to anybody hurt or frightened by my tweet.

“It was a remark made as a joke but I can see now it was a terrible mistake in awful taste.

“I am of Jewish heritage , had a Jewish partner for many years and many of my extended family are Jewish .
“I feel great respect for the Jewish people but I deplore what Netanyahu and the IDF are doing in Gaza , killing and mutilating thousands of children and babies.

“However, my ill thought joke was an expression of the grief and anger I feel about the takeover of the Labour Party by a Zionist faction which has expelled socialists like myself .

“I repeat my apology which is sincere and hope you will make it clear that I wish no harm to British Jews.”

Both Avon and Somerset Police and the Community Security Trust have been contacted over the threatening social media post, which has now been deleted, but not before it was shared on social media.

Bristol University had previously sacked the academic David Miller from its sociology department after Jewish students repeatedly raised claims of antisemitism.

It has also emerged that Bradley spoke out saying Miller’s dismissal from Bristol was “unjust.”

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