“If he had won, he probably would have had a fatal heart attack within a year anyway… Lucky for him he can relax, put his feet up and retire!”

UK Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn campaigns on Sunday for the upcoming elections.. (photo credit:” REBECCA NADEN/REUTERS)


For the vast majority in Britain, this election had to do with Brexit. That was the main issue of the campaign, that is what this election was all about.“Boris Johnson‘s election gamble poised to pay off,” the headline on Sky News’ website just after midnight read as the exit polls came in from the critical British election.

The BBC’s headline: “Conservatives on course to win majority – exit poll.”

For the Jewish people, however, a headline reflecting their initial reaction would run something like this: “Corbyn loses, Jews world-over heave a huge sigh of relief.”

For the vast majority in Britain, this election had to do with Brexit. That was the main issue of the campaign, that is what this election was all about. It was a Brexit-dominated, Brexit-focused, Brexit-centered campaign.

But for Jews in the United Kingdom and elsewhere, the issue was different, the stakes were higher and the election was about something even more significant than Brexit: it was about whether antisemitism would be mainlined and an antisemite would become Britain’s prime minister.

That he didn’t, that the Hamas and Hezbollah supporting Corbyn – a man who allowed rampant antisemitism to flourish in the Labour Party – appears to have suffered a thunderous loss, is a reason for celebration among Jews not only in Britain, even if they are opposed to the Brexit that Johnson supports.

Not only does this mean that there is a future for British Jewry – something that many British Jews had said might not have been certain had Corbyn won – but it also means that Israel has dodged a bullet.

The United Kingdom is currently Israel’s largest trading partner in Europe, a major intelligence partner and an important friend of Israel on the international stage.

All that would have been in jeopardy had Corbyn won. Corbyn pledged to end arms sales to Israel and recognize a Palestinian state. He would have been a significant advocate for Palestinian maximalist positions on the world stage. Israel would have suffered a mighty diplomatic blow had he taken the reins of power. That he didn’t is obviously something that will be enthusiastically welcomed in Jerusalem.

In 2002, they die was cast for the deterioration of Turkish-Israeli ties when Recep Tayyip Erdogan won elections there. There was a fear that a similar situation would result had Corbyn won these elections in Britain.

If the British exit polls hold true, those fears – as well as fears for the future of British Jewry – will prove happily unfounded.

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