New Statesman: "Who speaks for British Jews?"

The cover and contents from this week's special issue.

This week's issue is a special on the British Jewish experience, with a signature essay by David Cesarani. The magazine is now available on newsstands around the country, and domestic/overseas purchasers can order a single issue copy here.

Also in the issue:

  • Ed Miliband on his family's refugee history 
  • Linda Grant on the Jewish novel
  • David Baddiel on identity
  • Michael Rosen on his communist childhood
  • Will Self on other people's obsession with his Jewishness
  • Anthony Julius and David J Goldberg debate anti-Semitism
  • Jemima Khan interviews Anne Frank's step-sister, Eva Schloss
  • Rachel Shabi and Mehdi Hasan on Muslim-Jewish understanding
  • Daniel Trilling on Britain's last anti-Jewish riots
  • Rabbi Laura Janner-Klausner on Judaism and women's rights
  • Bella Freud interviewed
  • A short story by Naomi Alderman

All this, plus columns from Nina Caplan, Felicity Cloake, Anthony Clavane, Will Self, Rachel Lichtenstein and Jon Benjamin, chief executive of the Board of Deputies of British Jews.

The magazine can be found on newsstands around the country from Thursday 24 May to Thursday 31 May. Click here to purchase a single issue copy.

This article first appeared in the 28 May 2012 issue of the New Statesman, Who speaks for British Jews?

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PMQs review: Theresa May shows how her confidence has grown

After her Brexit speech, the PM declared of Jeremy Corbyn: "I've got a plan - he doesn't have a clue". 

The woman derided as “Theresa Maybe” believes she has neutralised that charge. Following her Brexit speech, Theresa May cut a far more confident figure at today's PMQs. Jeremy Corbyn inevitably devoted all six of his questions to Europe but failed to land a definitive blow.

He began by denouncing May for “sidelining parliament” at the very moment the UK was supposedly reclaiming sovereignty (though he yesterday praised her for guaranteeing MPs would get a vote). “It’s not so much the Iron Lady as the irony lady,” he quipped. But May, who has sometimes faltered against Corbyn, had a ready retort. The Labour leader, she noted, had denounced the government for planning to leave the single market while simultaneously seeking “access” to it. Yet “access”, she went on, was precisely what Corbyn had demanded (seemingly having confused it with full membership). "I've got a plan - he doesn't have a clue,” she declared.

When Corbyn recalled May’s economic warnings during the referendum (“Does she now disagree with herself?”), the PM was able to reply: “I said if we voted to leave the EU the sky would not fall in and look at what has happened to our economic situation since we voted to leave the EU”.

Corbyn’s subsequent question on whether May would pay for single market access was less wounding than it might have been because she has consistently refused to rule out budget contributions (though yesterday emphasised that the days of “vast” payments were over).

When the Labour leader ended by rightly hailing the contribution immigrants made to public services (“The real pressure on public services comes from a government that slashed billions”), May took full opportunity of the chance to have the last word, launching a full-frontal attack on his leadership and a defence of hers. “There is indeed a difference - when I look at the issue of Brexit or any other issues like the NHS or social care, I consider the issue, I set out my plan and I stick to it. It's called leadership, he should try it some time.”

For May, life will soon get harder. Once Article 50 is triggered, it is the EU 27, not the UK, that will take back control (the withdrawal agreement must be approved by at least 72 per cent of member states). With MPs now guaranteed a vote on the final outcome, parliament will also reassert itself. But for now, May can reflect with satisfaction on her strengthened position.

George Eaton is political editor of the New Statesman.