“The wretched of the earth are no longer remote, shadowy figures occasionally glimpsed in some TV documentary or in the bottom half of a new bulletin. They are here, in Europe, battering at our gates.”
Is this a man whose warnings about polarisation, populism and post-truth politics can be taken remotely seriously? A phrase from my youth came back to me on reading But What I Can Do?: “How can we hear what you’re saying when what you have done is deafening me?”
That the offspring of Holocaust survivors and the Kindertransport should be drummed out of the Labour Party for ‘anti-semitism’ is unconscionable.
“If you wanted to be Tony’s Foreign Secretary Michael [Levy] was part of the package… He was an effective fund-raiser for the Labour Party, especially with the UK’s Jewish community. He had a home in Israel, as well as in London. Of Michael’s loyalty to Tony I was never in any doubt. But when Michael was given this position the Israelis must have thought they’d won the lottery.” – Jack Straw
To be smeared and abused with impunity by Israel-supporting figures in politics and the media is part and parcel of the corruption and decadence that increasingly disfigures what is left of our democracy.
Couldn’t we liberate our fixed-smile TV presenters and reporters from spending the Spring Bank holiday dutifully gushing what they know to be largely saccharine guff?
Eagleton presents an account that forestalls any sense of disappointment or betrayal Labour members may feel in years to come: Starmer’s first loyalty was always to himself.
A Difference of Opinion: My Political JourneyJim SillarsEdinburgh: Birlinn, 2021, £14.99 There aren’t many people still active in British politics who served in the Royal Navy when sailors were given 200 free cigarettes a month. But Jim Sillars is one of them and has lived to reflect thoughtfully on the 65 years since he joined up ‘to dodge’ national service in the Army. He was posted as a...