Monday, June 12, 2017
Mark Weisbrot - The Resurrection Of Jeremy Corbyn: Truth As An Effective Political Weapon
Observers have pointed to various historical causes that have brought Corbyn to his leadership position and kept him there, such as the failure of the centrist, neoliberal project of “New Labour” to provide economic security or even much of a future for the party’s working class base; or Tony Blair’s deeply unpopular foreign policy, including the Iraq War and the lies on which it was sold.
Many have made the comparison to Bernie Sanders, who despite losing his primary bid last year is currently the most popular active politician in the US, and is especially well-liked among younger people. The appeal of these two senior citizens to youth is striking, and it bodes well for the future.
But one of the most important lessons of the Corbyn comeback is that the truth, so often dismissed as the first casualty of politics, can be an effective weapon. After the Manchester terrorist attack, Corbyn said something that no party leader in the US would say during an election campaign:
“Many experts, including professionals in our intelligence and security services, have pointed to the connections between wars our government has supported or fought in other countries and terrorism here at home.”
Corbyn opposed UK involvement in the wars in Afghanistan, Libya, Iraq, and Syria.
British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, a Trump-like buffoonish character with the moral compass of a sewer rat, responded in character, saying that Corbyn’s statement was “absolutely monstrous” and that it was “extraordinary and inexplicable in this week of all weeks that there should be any attempt to justify or to legitimate the actions of terrorists in this way.”
But these dishonest attacks, echoed by some of the UK’s largest media outlets, didn’t stick because people knew that Corbyn was telling the truth. A poll this week for The Independent in the UK found 75 percent in agreement that “interventions in Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya have made atrocities on UK soil more likely.” There is an important lesson here: the only way to prevent the right from constantly capitalizing on, and perpetuating, the cycle of terrorism and foreign military intervention is to explain to people what is actually happening… read more: