Tendance Coatesy

Left Socialist Blog

Tony Greenstein Makes New Friends in Wake of Trolling Natasha Allmark.

with 8 comments


Greenstein: at the end of the Pier.

Tony Greenstein is a fixture on the British left.

Widely admired, like Richard Seymour, for his wit, and limpid prose, his writings have been cited as an authority by no less (and certainly no more) a specialist in ‘anti-Zionism’, and ‘controversial’  New Left Review writer, Gabriel Piterberg.  Euro-Zionism and its Discontents. New Left Review .84. 2013. (1)

 Himself a redoubtable ‘conversationalist” over the last few days Greenstein has been ‘at it’ again.

Block and Unfriend Natasha Allmark – Suspected Informant (Tony Greenstein’s Blog).

You can satiate yourself on that link…

 Comrade Alan Thomas has commented,

Friend and Unblock Natasha Allmark — A word to the left

Well, this has been a sickening episode.

Let’s be clear first. I am a Labour Party member. I voted for Jeremy Corbyn last year and I have done so again this year.

I awoke this morning to an alert about this article, by one Tony Greenstein. It requests that people block and defriend one Natasha Allmark. It compares her to World War 2 era Nazi informants. Her crime? Threatening to call the Labour Party Compliance Unit on a group of professed Corbyn supporters with whom she had been arguing on Facebook.

“Nazi Informant”. Let that sink in for a bit. Consider the implications.

Natasha is an expectant mother and a student, and a supporter of the Liberal Democrats. She has children already. In the course of that discussion people publicly discussed calling social workers to her house. The behavior of those attacking her was akin to a shoal of piranhas. She was in distress, and not infrequently in tears.

In the course of one such row she told her interlocutors that if they did not desist then she would contact Compliance. She never did so. It was a defensive reaction from a distressed woman under attack. This is why Tony Greenstein compares her to informants who betrayed Jewish people to the Nazis. That’s it. He also uses her picture in the article, without her permission. Just so reader can be sure of exactly who he is accusing.

She is now afraid for her family. And I think as a left we have questions to ask of ourselves here? Do we want a political sphere where self appointed Torquemadas go around using public platforms to shriek accusations of betrayal at ordinary citizens? Do we want squads of online police telling people what is or is not an acceptable political view, and publicly flogging them if they dissent? I know what sort of “left” that sounds like, and it’s one that died in Europe in 1990.

It is beyond shameful that a veteran left wing activist would think it is OK to do this to anyone, let alone a heavily pregnant woman who he does not know. If I thought that were the real nature of the left in this country, I would want no part of it. It is sickening behavior.

So yes, unblock and friend Natasha Allmark.

It is an act of basic solidarity, and we owe it to her to show her that this is not how the left does business.

We stand with you Natasha.

I will not dignify Greenstein with further comment on this particular case: all the essential is expressed by Alan, with some additional information on Shiraz after Rosie posted the above.

But it interesting to note that Greenstein has now widened his field of battle.

If Iain McNicol was running a local authority election he’d have been arrested for Corrupt Electoral Practices.

Followed by,

Winning the Battle and Losing the War, “Momentum’s Inertia is Turning Victory into Defeat.”

More Greenstein friends will include “the present leadership of Momentum (which) operates by way of patronage and school chumminess.” Apart from their “cowardice” , ” fallible” Jeremy Corbyn, whose ” proposals for rail privatisation are completely bonkers.”

And so it goes….

Readers of this blog may possibly recall glancing at previous rants by Greenstein – more commonly known as ‘loony bins’ to his close friends around here – in response to, amongst other things, his views in the comments boxes of Tendance Coatesy on the “Kasztner” case and ‘Zionist’ relations with Nazism (Here: Tony Greenstein Resigns from Left Unity: World’s Progressives Shaken.)

The interventions are as lengthy as a small book and most people will have lost the will to live during the exchange between Michael Ezra, Greenstein calls him helpfully, “Mad Mikey”, and “cheap propagandist”  Paul Bogdanor.

This abuse is fairly mild by Greenstein standards.

It is unfortunate that the latest (there is an extremely long list) victim of his venom, Natasha Allmark, was unprepared for this.

It is also regrettable that people who should have known better have supported Greenstein in his efforts to become a member of the Labour Party.


(1) See also  The UCLA sexual harassment case that every professor should be aware of.  “This sexual harassment case at UCLA is jaw-dropping. From one plaintiff’s complaint, against history Professor Gabriel Piterberg:

51. He then started talking about the famous philosophers Hannah Arendt and Martin Heidegger, who met when Arendt was Heidegger’s student and subsequently carried on a clandestine love affair for more than forty years. He told her that relationships like theirs were normal and that “If it is done right, professor and student relationships are supposed to be intimate.”

52. Professor Piterberg then told her that he masturbated while imagining the two of them together.

53. Throughout this meeting, Plaintiff Takla continued to voice her discomfort with him as her advisor and his comments, but Professor Piterberg was upset with Plaintiff Takla for wanting a new advisor. He told her, “If anything happened between us, it might be while you are writing the conclusion to your dissertation.”

More (2016): UCLA community protests professor’s punishment for sex harassment: $3,000 fine and 11-week suspension


Written by Andrew Coates

August 30, 2016 at 11:18 am

8 Responses

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  1. It’s this business of seeing the Labour Party’s internal regime as akin to Nazi Germany that I don’t get. Why would anyone insist on the right to join Nazi Germany?


    August 30, 2016 at 1:55 pm

  2. Quite: previously it was the Spanish Inquisition.

    Thus”the Labour Party’s Inquisition marches on, with Labour’s Torquemada busy at work. It must be a disappointment to Progress that the rack has been abolished in Labour Party disciplinary procedures.”


    Andrew Coates

    August 30, 2016 at 4:17 pm

  3. “It is an act of basic solidarity, and we owe it to her to show her that this is not how the left does business.

    We stand with you Natasha.”

    Liked the letter, altho the last part isnt true.
    It is how the left does business. Its how the AWL, the SWP, the CPGB, the CPGB ML, all do business, and therefore it is how the left does business. Tony Greenstein is a typical leftist in that sense.

    that is the left.

    also, Natasha may not be completely Kosher either, she may have done stupid things which brought this on herself.

    this is the way the left does business.


    August 30, 2016 at 5:48 pm

  4. It would be nice if the Weekly Worker stopped printing articles by this guy. They had the decency to completely separate from Ian Donovan; they should have the decency to show Greenstein the door.


    August 31, 2016 at 1:14 am

  5. “they {ie the Weekly Worker] should have the decency to show Greenstein the door”: I agree, Jason. But Moshe Machover continues to contribute, and as far as I’m aware (and I don’t follow the CPGB/Weekly Worker closely, so stand to be corrected) remains quite happy to contribute to the same publication as Greenstein.

    Jim Denham

    August 31, 2016 at 9:40 am

  6. It is not the first time Greenstein has harassed individuals.

    I could give a list as long a screen scroll of other cases.

    This seems, nevertheless, to be one of the worst.

    Andrew Coates

    August 31, 2016 at 10:58 am

  7. The real issue is whether prominent New Left Review contributor ‘Professor” Piterberg ever wanked over Greensteein’s Blog posts…..

    Andrew Coates

    August 31, 2016 at 11:10 am

  8. Moshe Machover and Tony Greenstein don’t agree on much. In particular, Machover argues (correctly) that there’s a “Hebrew nation” in Israel, consisting (primarily) of self-identified Jews born in Israel, who have the right to national self-determination (in a binational state or via an equitable two-state settlement). Greenstein disagrees. WW prints both of them.


    September 1, 2016 at 4:14 am

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