Steerpike

The world’s unluckiest anti-racist: Corbyn’s greatest hits

The world's unluckiest anti-racist: Corbyn's greatest hits
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Rallies for Palestine were held across the country this weekend which meant of course a starring role for one Jeremy Corbyn. The former Labour leader was introduced on the London platform by comedian Alexei Sayle who – in a move that will hardly aid Jezza's bid to be readmitted as a Labour MP – dubbed Corbyn's successor Keir Starmer 'a little shitbag' to rapturous cheers from the crowd.

Corbyn told the crowds that international action provides 'succour, comfort and support' to those suffering in the conflict as they chanted 'oh, Jeremy Corbyn' and threw roses as he took to the stage. Unfortunately, as well as appearing on the same platform as notorious rapper Lowkey – who has previously ranted on Radio 1 against 'zombies and Zionists' – Corbyn's speech was just yards away from a ten foot inflatable sheikh with demonic red eyes, elongated nose and horns from its head. 

Corbyn's long-time comrade John McDonnell meanwhile shared an image of the Free Palestine march replete with one placard bearing a fake quote attributed to Albert Einstein: 'It would be my greatest sadness to see Zionists do to Palestinian Arabs much of what Nazis did to Jews' – something he, err, never actually said.

In light of another unfortunate incident where Corbyn found himself in a somewhat compromising situation, Mr S thought it would be worth revisiting other times he was inadvertently at the centre of a controversy.

Wreathgate

In 2014, Corbyn found himself at a ceremony which commemorated the deaths of several terrorists linked to the 1972 Munich massacre. The Daily Mail published pictures in 2018 which it claimed showed Corbyn actually laying a wreath by the grave of the terrorists with the then leader subsequently admitting to being at the terrorists' graves but that he had not put a wreath down with the famous line: 'I was present when it was laid, I don’t think I was actually involved in it.’

Holocaust Memorial Day

In 2018 The Times revealed he hosted an event that compared the Israeli government to the Nazis at the House of Commons on Holocaust Memorial Day in 2018. Corbyn spoke at and opened a talk entitled Never Again — for Anyone as part of a UK tour called Never Again for Anyone — Auschwitz to Gaza. Corbyn issues an apology declaring: 'In the past, in pursuit of justice for the Palestinian people and peace in Israel/Palestine, I have on occasion appeared on platforms with people whose views I completely reject.'

Just World controversy

In 2018 Corbyn was forced to apologise after the discovery that he was listed on its website as an international convenor of the Just World Trust, an NGO described by the Observer as a ‘trenchant critic of Israel. In 1996, when Corbyn led Just World Trust’s British chapter, Just World defended Roger Garaudy, the French philosopher convicted of Holocaust denial.

The one with the 'friends'

At a 2009 Stop the War coalition meeting Corbyn claimed 'It will be my pleasure and honour to host an event in parliament where our friends from Hezbollah will be speaking … I’ve also invited our friends from Hamas to come and speak as well.' Seven years later, Corbyn told the home affairs select committee that he no longer regarded the militant groups as friends and that he used ‘inclusive language’ to encourage a discussion about the peace process.

The 'Hand of Israel' saga

Again in 2018, footage emerged of a 2012 interview Corbyn gave in which he suggested Israel could be behind a terror attack. Asked on Press TV, an Iranian television channel which had been banned from broadcasting in Britain the year earlier, about an Islamist terrorist attack in which sixteen Egyptian police officers were murdered Corbyn claimed: 'I suspect the hand of Israel in this whole process of destabilisation.'

First female planejacker

In 2002 Corbyn spoke at a rally alongside Leila Khaled, who blew up a passenger jet on the runway in 1969, then had plastic surgery to disguise herself and joined a second hostage-taking the next year as part of the Black September attacks. Both she and Corbyn were keynote speakers at a pro-Palestine conference organised by George Galloway in Lebanon in 2011.

Written bySteerpike

Steerpike is The Spectator's gossip columnist, serving up the latest tittle tattle from Westminster and beyond. Email tips to steerpike@spectator.co.uk.

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