The recent formation of an Independent Group of ex-Labour and Tory MPs has caused huge controversy in the media and among political personalities. Among the latter, partly because I can't think of a better way to describe him, I include the ex-Labour and Respect MP, George Galloway, seen above. As Mr Galloway is no longer in the Labour Party and the fact that the other party for which he served as an MP (Respect) no longer exists, he is now something of an Independent himself,we might expect him to have some sympathy or respect (small "r") for the Independent group in Parliament.
Alas, this is not the case. Commenting adversely on "the gang of eight" ex-Labour MPs, The Mirror reported:
" He (Galloway) branded one of the eight, Joan Ryan, "an agent of the Israeli embassy in London" - claims she vehemently denies - and claimed another, Jewish MP Luciana Berger, was not really leaving due to anti-Semitism. In comments that attracted fury online, he said the new group was "really a black op" and told a Sky interviewer: "The Goebbels is you".
The Goebbels reference is to the Nazi propaganda minister, Joseph Goebbels, who said:
“If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it."
Not the most delicate choice of historical figure to quote when discussing Jewish MPs, but Mr Galloway must know that.
In fact, Mr Galloway's hypocrisy on this issue is breathtaking. On TalkRADIO, he denounced the ex-Labour independents as traitors, out to stab Jeremy Corbyn in the back. Yet he himself has stood against Labour in elections and regularly belittled Labour politicians whom he disliked - especially Tony Blair. As John Mann, MP, said of Mr Galloway on Sky News:
“There’s a man who did stand as an independent, as a traitor to the Labour Party."
I suspect that Galloway's new respect (that word again) for Jeremy Corbyn stems from his desire to rejoin the Labour Party. Fortunately for Labour, that won't happen. As "GG" has stood against Labour in elections, he cannot rejoin. John Mann again:
"Once a traitor, always a traitor. So Galloway should not be allowed back in.Galloway was a traitor, he stood as an independent."
Galloway has presumably never heard the old proverb about pots calling kettles black.
Now, I have an issue to address here, for which I fully accept the need. Some people, rightly, will question the wisdom of attacking Mr Galloway yet again. Lots of people have attacked him in the press and online (so have I). By his antics on Big Brother, his outrageous statements on various issues, his alliance with Nigel Farage on the EC Referendum ("Churchill and Stalin") and his praise for the Iraqis who fought British troops in Iraq, you'd think him dead in the water. Then there was his infamous statement on the rape allegations against Julian Assange. As the Independent noted:
"He argued that if a woman consents to sex once, and then wakes up to find the same man having sex with her again without her consent, that is not rape. Not everybody needs to be asked prior to each insertion,” he said."
Then there is his link with the regime in Iran. There's no secret about the fact that he works for the Iranian regime's propaganda outlet, Press TV. His weaselling defence of the Iranian tyranny's persecution of LGBT people has been attacked by Peter Tatchell. As Tatchell says:
"His (Galloway's) claim that lesbian and gay people are not at risk of execution in Iran is refuted by every reputable human rights organisation, including Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission and the International Lesbian and Gay Association. None of these esteemed bodies are anti-Iran warmongers, as Galloway has subsequently seemed to imply."
And, if I may add my two pence worth, "GG" has been strangely quiet about the imprisonment on trumped-up charges in Iran of the Iranian/British mum, Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, and other dual nationals.
Why then, not just ignore this mountebank, this ex-Labour popinjay? The answer is simple: we can no more ignore Galloway safely than we can ignore the Holocaust denier, David Irving. Both these men have a cult following online and in print. If we do not challenge them, they will regard it as a victory, and grow even bolder. Turn your back upon Mack the Knife, and you will eventually be stabbed between the shoulder blades.