Gran outraged at anti-Semitic book found at Kilburn library

A woman who stumbled across an anti-Semitic book in Kilburn library is furious that the matter is not being discussed at a public meeting by Camden councillors.

Grandmother Gillian Freedman was left shaking after she spotted the offensive item entitled ‘Are Jews Responsible for 9/11’ in the library.

She raised the matter with Camden Council and the head of library services. Both have apologised by email and admitted that is was an error.

But Ms Freedman is upset that Cllr Jonathan Simpson, the new chairman of the overview and scrutiny committee for culture and environment, has refused to discuss the matter at a public meeting.

Ms Freedman, who lives in Hampstead Garden Suburb, is concerned that the emails could be deleted and that it needs to be recorded in public.

She said: “With Camden’s anti racist, anti discrimination policies in the borough – which I applaud – it is a complete shock and disgrace to find that they have spent our rates on a blatantly anti-Semitic tract.

“Transpose the book’s title “are English Jews responsible for 9/11” to “ are English Muslims responsible for 9/11” and I think there would have been more of a public response to the outrage.”

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But Cllr Simpson said: “As a Jew I found it exceptionally offensive, but in this instance the complaint by Gillian actually changed Camden policy. Senior librarians will monitor book orders very closely.

“Taking it to scrutiny to look at a policy that had already changed would make very little difference.”

A spokeswoman for Camden Council added that the book had been purchased locally, by mistake, in response to a request from a library user. She added that libraries do stock material that can be deemed controversial but the items are not on display and users must ask a member of staff to see them.