Communist Party of Britain and Morning Star

A weather-vane not a signpost

Published on: Wed, 08/01/2020 - 12:31
Author

Jim Denham

Any socialist who didn’t feel sick to the stomach on the morning of 13 December has something seriously wrong with them.

But the reaction of the Morning Star and its political masters, the Communist Party of Britain went beyond that and verged upon grief and hysteria.

Instead of studying the polling evidence for the reasons, they lashed out at the only (supposed) “cause” of defeat they could countenance — Labour Remainers. Their hysteria even involved an element of perverse gloating. The 14-15 December Morning Star used its front page to crow (in large block capitals) that “Remain is Over”,

When the Morning Star justified racism

Published on: Wed, 18/12/2019 - 12:44
Author

Sean Matgamna

Picture: Georges Marchais, former General Secretary of the Communist Party of France

On 15 January, 1981, the Morning Star, the daily paper of the Communist Party of Great Britain, once called the Daily Worker, had a fine front page article denouncing a proposed Tory anti-immigration law.

Straight to target: the “Nationality Bill”, it told its readers, is a racist Bill. That is why immigrant groups are vigorously opposing it, and why the broad labour movement must fight it too.

But now turn to page 2 of the same issue of the Star. There, you will find a report on the policy of the French

The Morning Star's Mirvis mystery

Published on: Wed, 04/12/2019 - 18:15
Author

Jim Denham

Chief Rabbi Ephraim is certainly a small-c conservative on both political and theological matters. He congratulated Boris Johnson on becoming Prime Minister (though in fact religious leaders routinely offer congratulations and promises of prayer to all incoming prime ministers).

Whether or not Mirvis is a Tory is not the issue. His attack on Labour over antisemitism addressed a real problem.

Even the Morning Star, in a rambling and not entirely coherent editorial (27 November) noted that a 2018 poll conducted for the Jewish Chronicle “said more than 85 per cent of British Jews think Jeremy

Fight social-imperialism! Pass me my pay-off!

Published on: Wed, 20/11/2019 - 23:19
Author

Jim Denham

The Morning Star has a problem: its political masters of the Communist Party of Britain (CPB) have stated that they advocate a Labour vote in every constituency – “including Derby North, despite the outrageous suspension of excellent sitting MP Chris Williamson”, to quote the CPB’s London district secretary Steve Johnson.

So what to do about the “excellent” comrade Williamson? After all, he’s an avid Brexiteer, sees complaints of antisemitism as all a plot by the Jewish Labour Movement, the Israeli embassy and the “Zionists”, supports Assad, and loves conspiracy theorists like Vanessa Beeley.

Taking the illiberal side?

Published on: Wed, 06/11/2019 - 10:20
Author

Jim Denham

Andrew Murray, one of Jeremy Corbyn’s key advisers, gave a “rare interview” to the Guardian on 30 October in which he warned against Labour taking the “liberal side” of the “culture war” around Brexit and “warned that the campaign to stop Brexit has increasingly become a form of identity politics”.

Mr Murray, it should be noted, was until 2016 a senior member of the Communist Party of Britain (CPB) and has been one of the “four Ms” (together with fellow Stalinist Seumas Milne, plus Karie Murphy, and Len McCluskey) actively promoting pro-Brexit lines in tune with the CPB within the top

Interview with an invertebrate

Published on: Wed, 30/10/2019 - 10:53
Author

Jim Denham

What to call those Labour MPs who backed Johnson’s Brexit bill? I tend to the view that the word “scab” should be restricted to industrial strike-breaking.

“Traitor” should probably be avoided in the present incendiary political atmosphere. So how about “invertebrate”?

We surely shouldn’t expect one such invertebrate receiving an entirely uncritical interview in what claims to be Britain’s only socialist daily paper.

Yet the Morning Star’s Lamiat Sabin (23 Oct) made Melanie Onn MP seem almost heroic: “But, where she differs from many of her parliamentary colleagues, Onn is prepared to put her

Eddie Dempsey and the misogynistic warlord

Published on: Wed, 23/10/2019 - 11:07

There is more to add to the crucial points Becky Crocker made about Eddie Dempsey in Solidarity 519.

The picture featured is Dempsey visiting Alexander Mozgovoy, an uber-nationalist, uber-misogynistic paramilitary leader in the pro-Russian militias during the war in eastern Ukraine. When Mozgovoy was killed a week after they met, Dempsey wrote a glowing obituary of his comrade, which I’ll quote below.

If you want to get a grip on Mozgovoy, this is what he declared about women in the territory he controlled as a warlord, and of course by implication more generally:

“If I see even just one girl

Morning Star admits it backs Johnson's deal

Published on: Tue, 22/10/2019 - 13:14
Author

Jim Denham

As some of you may know, when I write this column, covering the antics of the Morning Star and its political masters, the Communist Party of Britain (CPB) I generally try to maintain a jocular tone. But it can be difficult: sometimes I'm just too despairing and/or angry.

For some time I've been telling people that it's obvious that the Morning Star and CPB supported May's deal and now support Johnson's; if they had MPs that's how they'd be voting.

I have cited, for instance, the CPB's general secretary Roger Griffiths, quoted in the Morning Star of October 5-6, thus: "Pro-EU labour MPs who

Turkey: the poverty of “anti-imperialism”

Published on: Wed, 16/10/2019 - 10:48
Author

Jim Denham

In a letter to prime minister Boris Johnson leading figures from 13 UK unions have urged the UK government to condemn outright the Turkish aggression against the Kurds, triggered by Trump’s precipitate decision to withdraw all US troops from Syria.

They describe Trump’s move as “a green-light to a Turkish military invasion of North and East Syria, which, as we have already seen in Afrin, will undoubtedly lead to ethnic cleansing and genocide of the Kurds as well as a resurgence of ISIS.

“We therefore call on the UK government to immediately condemn Turkey’s threats of invasion and to work with

The message from Andrew Murray

Published on: Wed, 16/10/2019 - 09:18
Author

Ann Field

Ever the Stalinist nostalgic, in his new book The Fall and Rise of the British Left, Murray laments the passing away of “a largely vanished world of working-class power” and the fact that “none of the scenarios which gripped the left I grew up with in the twentieth century appear fully plausible any more.”

What is to fill the vacuum?

Murray’s answer is not: Slough off the dead weight of Stalinism, re-assert the centrality of independent working-class politics, and reforge a labour movement fit for the overthrow of capitalism.

Instead, and this is his explanation for Corbyn’s election as Labour

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