The Desolation of Labour 117


It is universally accepted that the extremely vindictive terms of the Treaty of Versailles, and particularly the massive reparation payments, were a major factor in the rise of Hitler and the second world war. Nobody accuses you of defending Hitler, justifying Hitler or hating the UK if you state that.

Yet the entire mainstream media and political establishment is united in shrill condemnation of Ken Livingstone for stating the undeniable fact that the 7/7 bombers were motivated by outrage at the British invasion of Iraq.

Labour is in a mad panic over Ken Livingstone’s fundamental departure from the neo-con narrative. He has had the temerity to point out that when we inflict “shock and awe” on other countries, and massacre from the air thousands of women and children, the result is assymetric warfare which includes terrorist blowback.

We are instead supposed to believe that our enemies are a spontaneous manifestation of pure evil, something that has with no cause arisen from the bowels of the earth to hurt us, like a devil in a horror movie.

The Blairites of course have still never admitted that the Iraq War was wrong, unjustified and had terrible consequences in the Middle East, let alone in the UK. They are desperate to keep bombing and bombing the Middle East until they can prove that Tony and they were right.

Ian Murray, Scotland’s remaining MP, is a particular weasel. He is voting against airstrikes not to alienate his constituents, but is doing so on the grounds he thinks Britain should also send in ground forces – going the “full Blair”. Murray has called for Livingstone to step down as joint chairman of Labour’s defence review, and is brimming with fury and indignation at Livingstone’s departure from a line acceptable to the media. Murray is quite possibly the most weasely and dishonest politician in the Labour Party, but that is a very strong field.

The media are delighted that, instead of querying David Cameron and the Tories on the unbelievable 70,000 moderate rebels claim, they can instead concentrate entirely on the split in the Labour Party. Jeremy Corbyn has blinked, and the Labour Party goes into the debate as a completely useless instrument, hopelessly split and with members speaking all over the place.

I dislike the whipping system and it is not the free vote that is the problem. It is the fact that a third of Labour MPs are extreme right wing warmongers. That is the problem.

There really is no point in the existence of the Labour Party any more. The best thing would be for the Blairites simply to join the Tories, which would move the Tory Party to the right. Or they could show the courage of Dick Taverne and resign and fight outside the Party. But they wish to try to regain control of the Party’s assets and finances, so this will never happen. Were I a Labour Party member, I would concentrate on the deselection of every MP who votes for bombing. I do not expect that will happen either. The Labour Party has declined into utter irrelevance, its only role being as a punching bag for the corporate media.

It is hard sometimes to be optimistic, but actually it is a good thing that it is now exposed for all to see that the Blairites were simply Red Tories. The loss of a pretend opposition is a necessary step towards establishment of a genuine democracy. It is ever more plain to me that Scottish independence in inevitable. I have real hope that politics in England and Wales will also reform in a way that no longer purely services the 1%.


117 thoughts on “The Desolation of Labour

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  • MJ

    “Jeremy Corbyn has blinked”

    I don’t think Corbyn had the authority to insist on a three-line whip. It is a decision that must be made by the shadow cabinet, not the leader alone.

  • pete

    OK so who would you support if you were English, Craig? “Brain-melt” Bennett? Scargill?

    Hundreds of thousands of new members have joined the Labour Party this year. I never, ever, thought I’d be one of them. I never thought we’d have any chance of a better nation here in England before the 2040s, when I would have anticipated a total breakdown of the existing system, hopefully not too violently, and hopefully resulting in something better and not worse. You’re right in saying that the only hope is mass deselection of Blairite MPs. But that’s do-able. The new LP members will also need to get real and understand that the Establishment/Deep State/Permanent Government will not play by the rules if there’s any real chance of Corbyn winning. But they’re new members, therefore not ossified in dogma, therefore capable of learning.

    You pin all your faith in the SNP- that’s your business, but from what you tell us on this blog the SNP is as centralised as NuLabour- and will inevitably attract the same type of troughers now that they’re the party of government in their own country. Which is why they don’t want anything to do with you, as you have made abundantly clear on this blog.

  • Gary Rudd

    Maybe everything you say is true and that Corbyn, being a wily old fox, knows this and is playing his hand – and choosing his battles – accordingly?

  • Mary No child shall be harmed

    Another Murray, Andrew Murray chair of STWC

    ‘Everyone would be delighted to see the end of Islamic State. But bombing by the most powerful air force in the world over the last two years has achieved little or nothing.

    David Cameron’s 70,000-strong ground army ready to take and hold IS-controlled territory is largely a figment of his imagination – his own “45-minute warning”. Some of the fighters he is counting on are in fact al-Qaeda supporters.

    And the government is still not seriously committed to a political process to end the Syrian civil war – the pre-condition for actually eliminating IS. Britain is therefore being sucked into another illegal, open-ended conflict which will achieve nothing beyond giving the whole cycle of violence another spin.

    Cameron has learned nothing from his own disastrous intervention in Libya, never mind Tony Blair’s Iraq aggression.

    His real reason for pushing for joining the bombing (alongside the USA, France, Russia and Turkey) is to give Britain a “seat at a table” in any post-war carve-up of the Middle East. The arguments of neo-imperialism in fact.

    The determination of the majority of the Shadow Cabinet to go along with this has already been repudiated by the vast majority of Labour Party members and supporters. A growing wave of lobbying by the anti-war movement has also had an impact.’

    http://stopwar.org.uk/index.php/news/why-all-possible-pressure-must-be-put-on-mps-particularly-labour-mps-to-stop-the-rush-to-war

  • Canexpat

    “It is universally accepted that the extremely vindictive terms of the Treaty of Versailles, and particularly the massive reparation payments, were a major factor in the rise of Hitler and the second world war. Nobody accuses you of defending Hitler, justifying Hitler or hating the UK if you state that.”

    That is because this is accepted as the mainstream narrative of the rise of Hitler. The mention of other possible factors are unacceptable – e.g. that Wall St. banks and certain U.S. corporations nurtured him for their own nefarious purposes. The fundamental problem is that questioning the ‘mainstream’ narrative on any subject should not ever open up the questioner to vilification if there are genuine grounds to question it. The rise of Cameron and Hollandes’ ridiculous notion of a ‘Non-violent extremist’ is just the next step in curtailing free thought in the West. The deep state Neocons have absolutely no interest in free discussion of any subject as they would be in danger of exposure.

  • ------------·´`·.¸¸.¸¸.··.¸¸Node

    There really is no point in the existence of the Labour Party any more

    ….. to voters, but if it disappeared it would be re-invented under a new name by those who control us by controlling our democratic choices.

  • Tony M

    “The Labour Party has declined into utter irrelevance, its only role being as a punching bag for the corporate media.”

    Except in Scotland, where we’re constantly told the sun shines out of their behinds. Their mouthpieces along with the Tories and LibDems get more airtime, more press coverage in Scotland than their electoral support could ever justify. Despite this, or perhaps because of the idiotic tripe and patent lies they’re compelled to spout, they slide further into the margins, the unacceptable face of Britnat extremism.

    The sheer bloody treachery and venom of the Blairites make the mostly harmless, almost always ineffectual lefty lovies like Livingstone and Corbyn only just an acceptable alternative for England till something better comes along. The wipe-out, extinction, followed by the fumigation of Labour’s lingering stench in Scotland will be completed in the 2016 Holyrood elections, then council elections the year after, their only hope must be to make sure those elections never take place and what better than a frenzied intensification of their (not our) masters’ war.

  • nevermind

    “The Labour Party has declined into utter irrelevance, its only role being as a punching bag for the corporate media.”

    Well said, Craig, its down to the Blairites and their self serving pompous belligerence, their ignorance of the positive change that has flooded the Labour which makes them now irrelevant.

    All these new members must be wholly cheesed off with this damaging and undermining backstabbing of Corbyn, not just by the media, who is complicit in the war agenda, another obvious fact that should dawn on people now, but by MP’s such as Ms. Dewsberry, who proclaimed that she has ‘consulted’ all the great and good in her constituency, which does not mean that she is talking for the majority of her voters.

    All these ignorants are achieving is the total annihilation of the Labour party, is that their plan Ms. Eagle? Mandelson? But maybe thats what must happen before something arises out of the ashes, Labour has many flaws, it will not survive this backstabbing.

    I saw this coming before Corbyn got selected, he has no home in the Labour party, its full of careerist Blairites and those few who still believe that their local mandate can change these radicals in their midst, they will soon realise that they have no lever of the corporate puppets.

  • writeon

    Corbyn… is out of his depth in his new role. There are reasons, not related to his politics, that kept him on the backbenches for so long. Number one being his almost total lack of ‘leadership qualities’, and probably more importantly, his lack of understanding of Power and how and why one has it and uses it. What this basically means is, that in situations like this one uses every tool at one’s disposal to get one’s policy adopted. Blair understood this maxim of power, as did Thatcher. Blair, almost singled-handedly, achieved his goal of dragging the country to war and used every trick in the dirty political book to do it. Corbyn, in contrast, to stop a war, to save lives; chooses not to use the powers he has. Which shows why he’s not the leader Labour or the country needs so badly.

    Corbyn had a majority in the PLP, just. Why give a ‘veto’ over his foreign policy to the Blarite rump? How is that democratic? He had the support of Conference. He had the support of a majority of part members. He, arguably had the support of the public. So why, like Pontius Pilatus does he choose to was his hands of responsibility and let the rump steer the horse? Because he’s weak and incompetent. He doesn’t know how to play the game, and Westminster is a theatre, properly.

  • Tom Welsh

    The real reason why two years of bombing has not harmed ISIS – but, rather, seen it grow with extraordinary rapidity – is that the USA and its allies created it and have been funding, arming, training and protecting it. See, for example:

    http://www.lewrockwell.com/2015/11/jack-perry/caused-isis/
    http://www.lewrockwell.com/2015/11/jack-perry/isis-oil/
    http://journal-neo.org/2015/11/23/tracking-isis-to-dcs-doorsteps/

    After all, how better to shelter a purpose-built army than to pretend that you are attacking it? There are areas of completely empty desert in Syria that look as if they have been heavily bombed dozens of times. Presumably the NATO aircraft take off with groaning with the weight of bombs, and return with empty racks – mission accomplished! Nobody can actually check where the bombs were dropped.

    The key fact to understand is that nothing that has been happening the Middle East is really caused by religious differences, or even by attempts to overthrow evil rulers. Actually, it’s all about money and power (as it always has been, and always will be, world without end). Ever wondered *why* “Assad must go”? Simple: he refuses to grant invaluable concessions for running pipelines where the Western elites want them to go. But even more important, he is an ally of Russia.

    After 1991, the Americans expected Russia to crumble into nice, easily manageable crumbs that they could gobble up. Unfortunately, after only a decade the Russians began to understand that their Western “friends” were actually aiming to cheat, defraud, rob and impoverish them. They didn’t want that, so they chose Putin (and others like him) to protect their interests. Now the Americans are terribly frustrated because they can’t seem to subvert Russia, and yet they can’t use violence against it either (without ending all life on Earth).

    So they have been doing what they can: trying to isolate Russia by destroying all its allies and even nations that are mildly sympathetic to it. Even there, though, their efforts have not been particularly rewarding:

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2014-09-01/everyone-saying-russia-isolated-heres-map

    Lastly, here’s an extremely funny example of how stupid the US media think the public is: http://russia-insider.com/en/us-tv/ri11374

  • Miss Castello

    Mary No Child Shall Be Harmed @12:00pm
    “His real reason for pushing for joining the bombing (alongside the USA, France, Russia and Turkey) is to give Britain a “seat at a table” in any post-war *carve-up* of the Middle East.”

    With plenty of blood for the gravy.

  • Tony_0pmoc

    In my experience Thierry Meyssan is often proved right. He predicted the Russian intervention in Syria 4 weeks before anyone else did. In this article he reaches some highly unusual conclusions indicating –

    1. A split in NATO
    2. UK, France & Israel planning together (as if it was Suez 1956) but without US or Russian approval
    3. No coalition planes flying over Syria because of intense Russian air defence (anything that flies over Syria that isn’t Russian is going to get shot down).

    “Why did Turkey shoot down the Russian Soukhoï 24 ?”

    http://www.voltairenet.org/article189474.html

    Conclusions

    “In order to protect its aircraft, Russia has deployed about thirty extra fighters to escort its bombers in the area. In particular, it has installed S-400 ground-air missiles on its military airport in Hmaymime (close to Lattakia). With a range of 600 kilometres, these systems can detect and destroy up to 160 targets at once. The US Coalition, which includes France and Turkey, immediately ceased its flights over Syria.

    From these elements, we may conclude that NATO was aware of the preparation of the Turkish attack and allowed it to happen. It looks as though Washington, which might support the project for a Kurdistan in Turkey, but is opposed to the invention of a pseudo-Kurdistan in Syria, is readying itself, with Russia, to oppose the Franco-Israelo-British project, just as the two major powers once opposed the colonisation of the Suez Canal (1956).

    Keep in mind :
    – The destruction of the Soukhoï 24 by Turkey was no accident, but an operation which had been planned well in advance in order to push Russia out of the area destined to be occupied by France, Israël and the United Kingdom. NATO, which had been following in detail both the Russian operation against the Turkmen militias and the Turkish attack, chose not to intervene.
    – Far from folding under pressure, Russia has found in this skirmish both a motive and an opportunity to extend its military presence in Syria. In particular, it has deployed S-400 anti-aircraft missiles.
    – The strategies of Turkey, which the international Press has been ignoring for four years, are now publicly discussed (pillage of Syrian factories, installation of training camps for jihadists in Northern Syria, supervision of the jihadists, support for Al-Qaïda, smuggling of petrol to finance Daesh).
    – The Franco-Israelo-British operation has been interrupted. Coalition planes no longer fly over Syria.”

  • Mary No child shall be harmed

    Great anger and mistrust in being expressed in the HoC about the railroading on the Syria ‘vote’. The motion has only been published at midday today and the two days allocated originally have been condensed into an extended one day debate. PMQs tomorrow have been cancelled.

    What’s the rush you fascist bastards?

    Salmond was implying that Cameron has some urgent plan for Thursday. Photo op in Akrotiri perhaps?

  • Mary No child shall be harmed

    The motion. The stool. The turd.

    ‘That this house notes that ISIL poses a direct threat to the United Kingdom;

    welcomes United Nations Security Council Resolution 2249 which determines that ISIL constitutes an ‘unprecedented threat to international peace and security’ and calls on states to take ‘all necessary measures’ to prevent terrorist acts by ISIL and to ‘eradicate the safe haven they have established over significant parts of Iraq and Syria’;

    further notes the clear legal basis to defend the UK and our allies in accordance with the UN Charter;

    notes that military action against ISIL is only one component of a broader strategy to bring peace and stability to Syria;

    welcomes the renewed impetus behind the Vienna talks on a ceasefire and political settlement;

    welcomes the Government’s continuing commitment to providing humanitarian support to Syrian refugees; underlines the importance of planning for post-conflict stabilisation and reconstruction in Syria;

    welcomes the Government’s continued determination to cut ISIL’s sources of finance, fighters, and weapons; notes the requests from France, the US and regional allies for UK military assistance;

    acknowledges the importance of seeking to avoid civilian causalities; using the UK’s particular capabilities;

    notes the Government will not deploy UK troops in ground combat operations;

    welcomes the Government’s commitment to provide quarterly progress reports to the House;

    and accordingly supports Her Majesty’s Government in taking military action, specifically airstrikes, exclusively against ISIL in Syria;

    and offers its wholehearted support to Her Majesty’s Armed Forces.’

    http://www.theguardian.com/politics/blog/live/2015/dec/01/syria-vote-corbyn-cameron-isis-to-war-because-his-case-is-falling-apart-politics-live

  • Loony

    The disentegration of the Labour Party is all very interesting, as is pointing out that MP´s are, by and large, venal and corrupt.

    It all misses the real point – that point being that everyday we move closer to war with Russia. ISIS, Jeremy Corbyn, Scottish independence et al are all irrelevant misdirections. We want war with Russia – no-one will admit this, but this is the desired neo con end game.

    Should all end well, after all Russians have got a pretty consistent track record of surrendering at the first opportunity.

  • Ken Waldron

    Ken Clarke pointed out even before the Iraq war that it would lead blowback and increased terrorism in the UK. Should be in Hansard if anyone wants to check.

  • craig Post author

    loony,

    I don’t think they want war with Russia. They want a new Cold War, with loads of money for the arms and security industries.

  • AAMVN

    Very true about a new cold war. They missed the old bugbear so badly – and Islamic Fascism never really cut it.

  • Geoffrey Miller

    You don’t mention the year of the Treaty of Versailles, so I assume you mean the 1871 Treaty which ended the Franco-Prussian War, which was imposed upon the French by the Germans, was extremely vindictive and more onerous in terms of reparations than the subsequent 1919 Treaty. If you are instead referring to the 1919 Treaty, it is by no means “universally accepted” that this lead inexorably to the Second World War.

  • Pan

    Craig –

    “…it is a good thing that it is now exposed for all to see that the Blairites were simply Red Tories.”

    I am not sure who you are referring to as “all”. I suspect you mean the Scots; you cannot possibly mean “all”, as in “everyone in the UK” or even “everyone in England”.

    Even if free-of-charge NHS prescription glasses made an overnight comeback, I cannot imagine the millions of subscribers (in one form or another) to the MSM/OOM viewpoint suddenly gaining 20/20 vision.

    ——-

    “I have real hope that politics in England and Wales will also reform in a way that no longer purely services the 1%.”

    I am quite sure I speak not only for myself, when I say, “Please, Craig, tell us how that might happen before we are all six feet under”.

  • Martin

    stating the undeniable fact that the 7/7 bombers were motivated by outrage at the British invasion of Iraq…

    Horsehit; assuming that the patsies “bombers” you’re referring to were those whose train from Luton got cancelled?

  • MJ

    “United Nations Security Council Resolution 2249”

    To be precise, Resolution 2249 urges member states to “take all necessary measures, in compliance with international law” against Isil and to eradicate the group’s safe havens in Iraq and Syria.

    That “in compliance with international law” bit is interesting and doesn’t get mentioned much. Does it mean for instance that Syria retains the right to bring down any foreign aircraft over its territory that it has not expressly invited or authorised? Turkey was acting within international law when it brought down the Russian jet.

    Note also that it refers to un-named “member states”, ie all or any member states. It gives the green light for instance to China to show up in Syria with 30k ground troops, provided it is with the consent and approval of Syria.

    The resolution was passed unanimously by the Security Council. Russia did not veto it. Russia was entirely happy with the wording and may indeed have drafted it, allowing France to take the credit.

  • nevermind

    Many great posts this morning. Thanks for the excellent links from Tom W., Tony O and Mary.
    Now that we have got the war proposal, what are the mechanisms to change any of these points to

    -allow boots on the ground
    -allow to bomb for ‘humanitarian’ reasons

    This policy point is pretty rubber shite
    ‘welcomes the Government’s continued determination to cut ISIL’s sources of finance, fighters, and weapons; notes the requests from France, the US and regional allies for UK military assistance; ‘

    Welcomes? well thats about it, they have not interfered with the finances of the principal backers for four years, showed nothing but, ‘continued determination’ then tags on the ‘notes the requests from France, the US and regional allies, for UK assistance.’
    why is Russia not included? were they asked as to their stance on our participation?
    what was/is their reply. Vital Questions the media are not asking because they are busy taking down Corbyn.

  • Robert Crawford

    Mary.

    “Salmond was implying that Cameron has some urgent plan for Thursday”.

    I wonder what he knows?

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