Melanie Phillips brands Black Lives Matter ‘anti-Jew and deeply antisemitic’

The latest Jewish News

Read this week’s digital edition

Click Here

Melanie Phillips brands Black Lives Matter ‘anti-Jew and deeply antisemitic’

Right-wing columnist made her remark during a BBC debate on the England team's decision to 'take the knee

Lee Harpin is the Jewish News's political editor

The journalist Melanie Phillips has labelled the Black Lives Matter movement as “anti-Jew” and “deeply antisemitic” during an appearance on the BBC’s Politics Live show.

Speaking from her home in Jerusalem during a debate on the England football team’s decision to “take the knee”, the right-wing commentator gave her verdict on the gesture.

She said:”This gesture was then taken up by Black Lives Matter, which is a fundamentally anti-white, anti-West, anti-Jew organisation.”

Phillips then claimed the “whole schtick” of BLM “is that Britain is systematically racist.

“That is a libel on Britain. It is a racial libel on Britain, a deeply racist statement.”

She then insisting that “taking the knee” was itself a “racist statement – that is why it should be condemned.”

The Liberal Democrat foreign affairs spokesperson Layla Moran, another panellist on the BBC Two show,  shook her head in response to Phillips comments.

She branded Phillips remarks as “utter rubbish.”  But Phillips responded by suggesting “Black Lives Matter is a deeply antisemitic organisation – that is what you are supporting.”

Phillips then referenced the “Black Power gesture” and asked if Moran would have supported that.

Albie Amankona, who appeared on the programme as a representative of the Conservatives Against Racism, For Equality group also said the Phillips had been “wrong” to suggest BLM’s origins were with an American footballer named Colin Kaepernick who she said had “refused to stand to honour his country.”

Amankona said the origins of the movement lay with the “pacifist” Martin Luther King.

Phillips have become increasingly controversial in her comments on issues around race and Islam over recent years.

A spokesperson for the BBC said: “Politics Live invites a panel of contributors drawn from across the political spectrum to discuss the day’s biggest stories, and we aim to ensure our guests represent a wide range of views and opinions.”

In a column published by the Jewish Chronicle newspaper she claimed the concept of Islamophobia was “profoundly anti-Jew.”

She faced protests when she appeared alongside fellow right-wing commentator Douglas Murray at a Jewish Book Week event at JW3 in March 2020.

Support your Jewish community. Support your Jewish News

Thank you for helping to make Jewish News the leading source of news and opinion for the UK Jewish community. Today we're asking for your invaluable help to continue putting our community first in everything we do.

For as little as £5 a month you can help sustain the vital work we do in celebrating and standing up for Jewish life in Britain.

Jewish News holds our community together and keeps us connected. Like a synagogue, it’s where people turn to feel part of something bigger. It also proudly shows the rest of Britain the vibrancy and rich culture of modern Jewish life.

You can make a quick and easy one-off or monthly contribution of £5, £10, £20 or any other sum you’re comfortable with.

100% of your donation will help us continue celebrating our community, in all its dynamic diversity...


Being a community platform means so much more than producing a newspaper and website. One of our proudest roles is media partnering with our invaluable charities to amplify the outstanding work they do to help us all.


There’s no shortage of oys in the world but Jewish News takes every opportunity to celebrate the joys too, through projects like Night of Heroes, 40 Under 40 and other compelling countdowns that make the community kvell with pride.


In the first collaboration between media outlets from different faiths, Jewish News worked with British Muslim TV and Church Times to produce a list of young activists leading the way on interfaith understanding.


Royal Mail issued a stamp honouring Holocaust hero Sir Nicholas Winton after a Jewish News campaign attracted more than 100,000 backers. Jewish Newsalso produces special editions of the paper highlighting pressing issues including mental health and Holocaust remembrance.

Easy access

In an age when news is readily accessible, Jewish News provides high-quality content free online and offline, removing any financial barriers to connecting people.

Voice of our community to wider society

The Jewish News team regularly appears on TV, radio and on the pages of the national press to comment on stories about the Jewish community. Easy access to the paper on the streets of London also means Jewish News provides an invaluable window into the community for the country at large.

We hope you agree all this is worth preserving.

read more: