Blairite ‘moderates’ threaten British Labour leader Corbyn’s life

This video from the British Parliament says about itself:

Jeremy CorbynResponse to the Chilcot Inquiry report

6 July 2016

This is the entire speech I just gave to the House of Commons in response to the Chilcot Inquiry report into the Iraq war.

It is only a provisional response – as I only received the report this morning – but I will be giving a further response later today.

The intervention in Iraq was a tragic decision which lead to the deaths of 179 British personnel and hundreds of thousands of Iraqis – while destabilising the region and increasing the threat of terrorism to our own country.

After threats of violence against British Labour Jeremy Corbyn supporters by Blairite self-styled ‘moderates’, now this.

From daily The Independent in Britain today:

Jeremy Corbyn targeted with death threats as Labour factional infighting boils over

Jon Stone

Jeremy Corbyn says he has been targeted with persistent death threats, as factional infighting within the Labour Party escalated into accusations of violence. …

Mr Corbyn, who is under pressure to quit his post amid opposition from his own MPs, said he had been sent threats against his life this week and in the past. …

“As someone who has also received death threats this week and previously, I am calling on all Labour Party members and supporters to act with calm and treat each other with respect and dignity, even where there is disagreement.

“I utterly condemn any violence or threats, which undermine the democracy within our party and have no place in our politics.” …

The National Executive Committee was due to decide on Tue[s]day afternoon whether Mr Corbyn will automatically be on the ballot paper against any challenger to his leadership, or whether he would have to gather nominations from MPs. …

Mr Corbyn’s critics claim they are “saving Labour” from its members and leader, while the other faction says the leader’s democratic mandate has to be respected and that Labour MPs have a duty to back the party. …

Twitter page @LabourCoupAbuse catalogues threats and abuse by Labour moderates against Mr Corbyn’s supporters …

Mr Corbyn has been repeatedly described as a “traitor”, a “cancer”, and a “nonce”, according to tweets collated by @LabourCoupAbuse.

PLOTTERS seeking to oust Jeremy Corbyn will be “branded forever with the mark of infamy for betraying their party and their country,” Len McCluskey said yesterday. The Unite general secretary said MPs who had launched a “cowardly attack” on the Labour leader had “let the Conservatives off scot-free” and created “the mother of all splits” when the party could have seized the post-Brexit agenda: here.

There can be few examples of political cynicism as naked as yesterday’s launch of Angela Eagle’s challenge for leadership of the Labour Party: here.

21 thoughts on “Blairite ‘moderates’ threaten British Labour leader Corbyn’s life

  1. Tuesday 12th July 2016

    posted by Luke James in Britain

    Wealthy Blairites only likely financial backers

    ANGELA EAGLE may have to rely on wealthy Blairites to fund her coup after trade unions rallied behind Jeremy Corbyn.

    Ms Eagle finally pulled the trigger on the faltering putsch against Mr Corbyn yesterday, filing the paperwork needed for a leadership challenge before holding court with reporters in Westminster.

    But she could face funding problems because without the support of unions who backed her campaign for the party’s deputy leadership last year, in which she finished fourth of five with 16 per cent of first-preference votes.

    Many saw the Wallasey MP as the left-wing candidate in the contest and she was supported by four affiliated unions — Unison, CWU, TSSA and Ucatt, sharing Unite’s endorsement with eventual winner Tom Watson.

    Between them, the unions gave her £71,791 to fight the campaign, which eclipsed the £16,000 she received from three wealthy individuals.

    The biggest donation of £50,900 came from Unite, while the GMB gave £5,891, the TSSA gave £10,000 and the CWU £5,000.

    After Ms Eagle announced her swoop on the leadership this weekend, Unite general secretary Len McCluskey warned she — or any other challenger — is unlikely to receive support from major trade unions.

    The leaders of the CWU, Ucatt and Unison all quickly vowed to back Mr Corbyn in any leadership contest.

    And TSSA became the latest of Ms Eagle’s former backers to distance themselves from her campaign yesterday, branding it a “deliberate act of political sabotage.”

    “We supported Angela Eagle’s campaign to become deputy leader just 10 months ago, so it is with regret and great disappointment that we now overwhelmingly condemn her decision to launch a leadership challenge against Jeremy,” the union said in a statement after its executive met at the weekend.

    General secretary Manuel Cortes added that he was “concerned” Ms Eagle is being used by “masters of the dark arts” intent on splitting the Labour Party — a veiled reference to infamous arch-Blairite Peter Mandelson.

    He said: “Lets face it, if she doesn’t [pull out of the race] it will be Angela Eagle’s name that may yet go down in history as the woman who split the Labour Party.”

    Without donations from working people, Ms Eagle may be forced to turn to millionaires who have donated thousands to potential leadership challengers since Mr Corbyn was elected.

    Hedge fund manager Martin Taylor, recruitment magnate Peter Hearn, and RAC boss Sir Trevor Chinn, knighted under the Tories, have given a combined £46,800 to backbencher Dan Jarvis this year alone.

    Ms Eagle will have to declare donations to the Electoral Commission and Parliament.


  2. Tuesday 12th July 2016

    posted by Luke James in Britain

    ANGELA EAGLE was branded the “Empire Strikes Back” candidate yesterday in the Labour leadership election she’s unleashed by formally challenging Jeremy Corbyn.

    Shadow health secretary Diane Abbott put Ms Eagle to the lightsabre, saying her record of voting for the Iraq war and tuition fees proves that she is on the dark side.

    ITV’s Good Morning Britain show had asked how Ms Eagle could be the Blairites’ “new hope” after failing to win the deputy leadership last summer.

    “I think she’s the Empire Strikes Back candidate — she voted for Iraq, she voted for tuition fees,” said Ms Abbott.

    “And someone who came fourth out of five to be deputy, it’s not clear to me that she can win the leadership.”

    Ms Eagle hit back at her campaign launch in Westminster, claiming instead to represent the “Return of the Jedi.”

    The rebel described herself as a “practical socialist driven by a strong set of values who wants to get things done” and accused Mr Corbyn of “hiding behind a door not talking to his MPs.

    “That’s not leadership,” she said. “He’s opened the party to new ideas, but we need other people to take them forward.”

    But it was revealed yesterday that Ms Eagle is facing a vote of no confidence by members of her local party, which backs Mr Corbyn’s leadership.

    Wallasey Constituency Labour Party is expected to debate the motion on July 22, vice-chair Paul Davies said.

    And in another humiliating blow, there was a mass exodus of journalists from her campaign launch event when the news broke that Andrea Leadsom had unexpectedly pulled out of the Tory leadership contest.

    Ms Eagle called for the BBC, ITV and then Channel 4 political correspondents to ask a question — only to find they had already left.

    She insisted her challenge was not a “suicide mission” but she will be dealt a significant blow if Labour’s national executive rules at today’s emergency meeting that Mr Corbyn’s name should automatically be on the ballot paper.

    Left-wing executive member Christine Shawcroft said: “The only reason we are having this argument is that Jeremy Corbyn’s opponents want to keep him off the ballot paper because that’s their only hope of winning. When he’s on that ballot paper, he will win.”,-says-Abbott#.V4UY2aKZ0dU


  3. Tuesday 12th July 2016

    posted by Morning Star in Britain

    ON THE face of it, Jeremy Corbyn has a clear majority on Labour’s national executive committee, combining his own nine keen supporters with the 12 union posts, most of which have publicly declared for him.

    Even some more “moderate” NEC members favour his inclusion on the leadership ballot to ensure a fair contest.

    But the timing of this afternoon’s crunch meeting could make life more difficult for the Labour leader. With only 24 hours’ notice, union reps who work in front-line jobs may struggle to get time off.

    Youth rep Jasmin Beckett pledged to vote Mr Corbyn onto the ballot but is now surveying members on the question — suggesting she could now vote the other way. Two constituency members are carrying out similar exercises.

    There are six NEC members who are thought to be hostile, and six unknown quantities.


    Jeremy Corbyn (leader)

    Rebecca Long-Bailey (shadow cabinet)

    Jon Trickett (shadow cabinet)

    Ann Black (CLPs)

    Christine Shawcroft (CLPs)

    Pete Willsman (CLPs)

    Darren Williams (CLPs)

    Dennis Skinner (MPs)

    Diana Holland (treasurer)

    UNIONS (12)

    Keith Birch (Unison)

    Wendy Nichols (Unison)

    Jim Kennedy (Unite)

    Martin Mayer (Unite)

    Jennie Formby (Unite)

    Andi Fox (TSSA)

    Paddy Lillis (Usdaw)

    Andy Kerr (CWU)

    Mary Turner (GMB)

    Cath Speight (GMB)

    Pauline McCarthy (BFAWU)

    Jamie Bramwell (Ucatt)

    HOSTILE (6)

    Tom Watson (deputy leader)

    James Asser (Socialist Societies)

    Ann Lucas (councillors)

    Margaret Beckett (MPs)

    Shabana Mahmood (MPs)

    Glenis Willmott (MEPs)

    UNKNOWN (6)

    Jonathan Ashworth (MPs)

    Alice Perry (councillors)

    Johanna Baxter (CLPs)

    Ellie Reeves (CLPs)

    Keith Vaz (BAME Labour)

    Jasmin Beckett (Young Labour)


  4. Tuesday 12th July 2016

    posted by Morning Star in Editorial

    LABOUR’S Blairite Tendency is very miffed over Len McCluskey’s reference to its attempt to “bully and bludgeon” Jeremy Corbyn into resignation.

    Leading Tendency spokesman Chuka Umunna, who ought to consider giving his second home address as c/o BBC TV newsrooms, was so upset by the charge of bullying that he tried to shout down Labour NEC member Christine Shawcroft on the Daily Politics show.

    Umunna, who is backing challenger Angela Eagle, refuses, as does she, to back the Labour leader’s entitlement to defend, as of right, his mandate, relying on a bizarre interpretation of party rules that would disqualify Corbyn from the contest.

    It might be asked what value Eagle and her co-conspirators could place on an election victory gained through ruling out participation by someone returned in a landslide last September.

    Eagle has form in such matters, having limped through the selection process in her Wallasey constituency in 1992 only after overwhelming local party favourite Lol Duffy had been excluded through classic political jiggery-pokery.

    She and her parliamentary allies are not romantics. They don’t care how their eventual victory looks or how much it may smell.

    For them defeating a socialist incumbent and nipping in the bud a growing movement for real change both within and outside the Labour Party is what matters.

    Wallasey Labour members got over their duffing-up and the party nationally will do so. That’s the reasoning.

    Eagle has spent much of the past fortnight saying that she wants the leadership and telling Corbyn to resign. He hasn’t, so she has announced her challenge.

    Party general secretary Ian McNicol has received two legal opinions — one from Doughty Street Chambers advising that, since Corbyn isn’t a challenger, he doesn’t need to collect nominations from MPs and MEPs and the other, from who knows where, that doubtless suggests otherwise.

    Would Eagle have put her name forward if she didn’t believe that this mysterious advice contradicts Doughty Street and that it will form the basis of the recommendation to today’s meeting of the national executive committee (NEC)?

    This places a huge onus on the NEC, which can either back the scheming of some Labour MPs or answer the wishes and needs of not only Labour members but working-class communities in need of a party that stands up for them and a leader who understands and voices their concerns.

    Eagle asserts she is that leader — she who voted for Blair’s war on Iraq, opposed an inquiry into the war, backed bombing raids on Syria, supported higher tuition fees, wanted restrictions on refugees seeking asylum, voted for 90-day South African apartheid-style detention without charge, backed introduction of ID cards, abstained on Tory proposals to make people work for benefits and also abstained on the Tory austerity programme that included £10 billion of spending cuts.

    She insists that her leadership would be concerned with “creating a strong, united party.”

    The only party to emerge strong and united in the wake of Labour opting for such a disastrous approach would be the Tories, currently cobbling together a semblance of unity under Theresa May after ripping itself apart in the EU referendum campaign.

    It remains to be seen whether, even at this late stage, Labour MPs can be persuaded to end their arrogant self-indulgence, respect party democracy and unite behind the overwhelmingly elected leader.

    If they persist in abandoning the field of battle against the Tories when they should be uniting behind the leadership’s principled anti-austerity positions, they should be told their fortune, in no uncertain terms, by the entire labour movement.


  5. Tuesday 12th July 2016

    posted by Morning Star in Features

    Party bureaucracy’s efforts to expel leftwingers didn’t stop, warns TOMASZ PIERSCIONEK

    BEFORE Jeremy Corbyn was elected leader of the Labour Party in August 2015, amassing 59.5 per cent of the vote and beating three vapid candidates, the party’s Establishment and its allies in the media began their blitzkrieg.

    Corbyn’s unexpected appearance in the leadership race caught the attention of many ex-Labour members and voters who felt their party was doomed to forever be haunted by the spectre of New Labour.

    He offered these individuals the chance to experience and be part of a new politics, one that served the majority rather than the few.

    The hope felt towards this political paradigm shift led thousands to join or rejoin the Labour Party.

    The powerful and wealthy have always had the Tories there to advocate for their interests. The rest of us have had to accept a Labour Party whose leaders have, at best, tried to face both ways at once and whose allegiance to the party’s base has only momentarily reappeared around election time.

    Thousands of those who signed up last summer to become Labour Party members or supporters found their applications rejected by the “compliance unit,” with the excuse that they did not support the “aims and values of the party.”

    Though it is unclear exactly how many applications were rejected, estimates run in the low thousands.

    It comes as no surprise that the majority of those turned away sought to vote for Corbyn.

    Like many others, I first heard of the compliance unit’s existence only last summer.

    This unelected body, of which little seems to be known, is apparently overseen by the Labour Party bureaucracy and is entirely removed from the control of grassroots members.

    Following Corbyn’s election, the compliance unit set about purging the party of a number of longstanding members, who found themselves expelled on spurious grounds with little or no right to appeal.

    Unable to launch an all-out attack against Corbyn straight out due to the intense fury their autocratic methods would arouse, the Blairites and their allies sought to erode his base, tarnish his image with the support of media allies, manufacture the appearance that Corbyn could not lead the party and pretend anti-semitism was rife within Labour.

    We now have a democratic crisis. Thousands of Labour Party members support a leader whom several dozen MPs and their friends are trying to oust. The guilty MPs have abandoned all trust bestowed upon them by their constituency parties and voters. If they were honourable, they would now resign.

    However, their democratic deselection would now seem the only way to stop them destroying the Labour Party, with its long history of being at the forefront of progressive change. Precisely because Corbyn can offer an alternative to the status quo, one which puts to shame much of the Parliamentary Labour Party (PLP) and offers a real challenge to the Tories, the heirs of New Labour are working overtime to make their coup a success. In doing so, they betray the trust of their constituents, the hope of the working class and the magnanimity of their leader.

    In May this year, I fell victim to what has been named “Operation Icepick,” in reference to Labour’s purge of the left 40 years ago.

    Labour’s compliance unit sent me a letter stating that I had been expelled from the party on the grounds that I was “actively involved with and/or a member of Socialist Appeal.” Several other supporters of both Socialist Appeal and the Marxist Student Federation received virtually identical letters around the same time.

    After digging out the sender’s email address — not provided in the letter itself — I requested an appeal and asked how the unit had reached its decision.

    My rebuttal was simple: I pointed out that Socialist Appeal was not a proscribed organisation, nor was it a political party.

    It is a tendency of activists within the labour movement campaigning for socialist ideas within the Labour Party. (The Labour website itself described the party as “a democratic, socialist party.”) I added that Socialist Appeal does not campaign or stand candidates against Labour, and openly supports the aims and values of the Labour Party.

    I also mentioned that a fellow member of Socialist Appeal, expelled last year, appealed and had his expulsion overturned after the appeals panel determined that there was no contradiction between his involvement with Socialist Appeal and membership of the Labour Party.

    Having not received a response — as seemed to be the case for others — I sent a second message and a short while later I received a response.

    It stated that there was “no right of appeal against automatic exclusion,” which “is only implemented when a member has acted in such a way that is clearly and incontrovertibly in breach of the party’s rules.”

    It then set out the criteria for organisations “ineligible for affiliation” to Labour.

    And again, another reply, this time challenging the unity’s claim that I had “clearly and incontrovertibly” broken the rules, asking for the decision to be looked at once more and noting the clear precedent of an appeal and readmission.

    Another element I noted was that the rules cited by the compliance unit in its second email, regarding an organisation with its “own programme, principles and policy,” apply to a whole range of organisations within which thousands of Labour Party members are active.

    Within the party there are supporters and members of organisations such as Progress, Momentum and CND, not to mention unaffiliated trade unions such as the RMT.

    Are these rules to be applied to these members too? If not, then why had Socialist Appeal been singled out?

    And what was the “supporting evidence” the unit claimed to have to back up expelling me?

    So far, I’ve not heard back. In the meantime, I am informed that sources on Labour’s national executive committee have confirmed that neither it nor party conference has ever proscribed Socialist Appeal or the Marxist Student Federation.

    Several other recently expelled supporters of Socialist Appeal and I shall continue fighting for our chance to be back within the Labour Party.

    Exactly why should loyal members be forced to leave the Labour Party, while MPs who show no support for their leader and betray their electorate with a vote of no confidence, is a mystery to me. They are far removed from the aims of Labour’s founding members and that of its current membership. It seems that brazen attacks against Corbyn in the media are likewise not grounds for expulsion.

    Corbyn and his parliamentary allies are under siege but they have colossal support outside the PLP from thousands of Labour members and the leaders of the major trade unions. These individuals have fought and waited for years to have a leader like Corbyn in power and are not about to abandon the fight and surrender the working class’s only party to a small band of career politicians who have sojourned in the Labour Party for far too long and whose deselection and rapid replacement is long overdue.

    We need Corbyn to lead the Labour Party and he needs trusted members like us to help him in the struggle.


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