Since Jeremy Corbyn’s landslide victory in the Labour Leadership election, Britain’s largely right-wing or reformist media have been beside themselves in efforts to denounce him. For a little light Sunday reading, we’ve collected and debunked three of this weeks worst offenders.
No. 1. THE EXPRESS
The Express had to hark all the way back to the 19th century in order to smear Jeremy Corbyn for the actions of his great-great grandfather. Caroline Wheeler’s piece was so hilarious, we genuinely mistook it for satire at first. But it’s not.
But if we are going to delve into family histories as a means of judging politicians – the Conservatives are not going to come out of this well. Corbyn’s great-great-Grandfather ran a horrid workhouse, Cameron’s Great Grandfather put down an Indian rebellion, apparently hanging villagers without trial and overseeing general raping and pillaging of his ‘colony’.
Or perhaps we could discuss how Cameron’s father left his inheritance in tax havens?
No 2. THE SUN
The Sun decided to pop Corbyn on the front page, wearing a jester’s ‘Cap n Bells’ alongside the accusation that he was a ‘hypocrite’.
Why? They claimed he would eshew his republican principles to kiss the Queen’s hand and joint the Privy Seal for cash. There was just one problem – this isn’t true. As Huffington Post reports:
The Sun’s Tuesday front page has been rubbished by experts and even its own source, after it tried to smear new Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn by branding the republican a “hypocrite” for kissing the Queen’s hand to secure more than £6m of taxpayer funds.
Catherine Haddon, from the Institute for Government, said journalists from the paper had confused separate issues to do with Privy Council status and party leaders’ access to Short money, wrongly attacking Corbyn with their front page story.
“A leader is often given Privy Council status so they can be fully briefed on national security issues”, she said. “But this has nothing to do with Short money.”
“It is strong convention that the Leader of the Opposition has been a Privy Counsellor, but it is not constitutionally binding.”
So, no hypocrisy on Corbyn’s part here. Although, while we’re on the subject of hypocrisy. One might suggest that a paper which calls the Queen a Nazi one week, might look a little hypocritical demonizing someone for simply not singing the national anthem the next.
No. 3: THE SUN (AGAIN!)
And the third spot goes to The Sun too, for claiming in this September 14th headline that Corbyn plans to abolish the army.
Is Corbyn a man of peace? Yes. He supports nuclear disarmament, and he has voted and campaigned against military operations outside of international law, such as the drone programme, and regime change-occupations like Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya and elsewhere.
In short, Corbyn stands for war as a last resort, and for the UK to act as a force for good, not belligerence, on the world stage. He states in his website:
“No more illegal wars, a foreign policy that prioritises justice and assistance. Replacing Trident not with a new generation of nuclear weapons but jobs that retain the communities’ skills.”
He has also spoken of defense diversification, taking the £100 billion which would have been spent on Trident, and reinvesting it in training and skills to create jobs for those impacted by the change.
“Not renewing Trident gives our country an opportunity to invest in industry, innovation and infrastructure that will rebalance our economy and transform it into a high skilled, high-tech world leading economy. It is not only the right thing to do but a better way to deal with our economic challenges.”
So no, Corbyn is not planning to abolish the army. You can read his policy documents on defense yourself.
If you’re wondering exactly why Jeremy Corbyn has the permanent political class and media elites so terrified – you can read my full piece on that here. But in the meantime, don’t buy this nonsense. It isn’t even worthy of wrapping your chips in. Similar to Project Fear in Scotland, which destroyed Scottish faith in mainstream media and saw the development of a vibrant alternative media scene – the attacks on Corbyn are awakening people south of the border to just how unreliable their mainstream media has become. Ever more people are asking: who do these papers and broadcasters serve?
The answer? Not us.
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