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THE only thing more slimy than the “spy” smears uttered by the Mail and Sun against Jeremy Corbyn is Theresa May’s po-faced assertion that he should be “open and transparent” and “account” for past deeds.
The Mail has previous in abundance, from publishing the forged Zinoviev letter just before the 1924 general election to discredit Labour, to backing Oswald Mosley’s anti-semitic fascists with its Hurrah for the Blackshirts story.
Rupert Murdoch’s rag can never be taken seriously as a newspaper after the lies it propagated to whitewash the police riot against striking miners at Orgreave and South Yorkshire Police’s blaming of Liverpool football fans at Hillsborough for a tragedy caused by its own failings.
By jumping on the bandwagon, May gives credence to the slurs of fantasist former Czechoslovak low-level spy Jan Sarkocy against Corbyn.
His every statement serves only to emphasise his estrangement from reality, from claiming that his country funded the first Live Aid concert to his recollection of indenting for expenses of £35 in 1986 to take Corbyn for a meal.
Even former Sun political editor Trevor Kavanagh, who defended his scandal sheet’s coverage on the BBC TV Daily Politics show, must have smelled a rat on being told that abstemious vegetarian Corbyn would be enticed by “fresh fish, profiteroles and fine wines.”
Sarkocy’s hospitality expenses, together with his assertion that Labour MPs used to demand up to £15,000 in return for their secrets, conjures up images of Walter Mitty and a sticky-fingered chancer.
The Mail, Sun, Observer and Telegraph, which has joined in, ought to come clean over whether they greased their Slovakian agent Nula Nula Sedem’s palm for his revelations.
Corbyn, in common with many left Labour MPs, was consistently critical of the Soviet Union and Czechoslovakia, especially following the 1968 military intervention that removed popular prime minister Alexander Dubcek.
He backed the reformist Charter 77 group, retaining links with founder Jan Kavan who became Czech foreign minister and UN general assembly president after Czechoslovakia split in 1993.
None of this has been hidden from view. It will certainly be old news to Britain’s intelligence operatives taxed with investigating Corbyn before he became a privy councillor after winning the Labour leadership.
Yet our Prime Minister affects to take Sarkocy’s ravings seriously, urging Corbyn to spill the beans.
Had May been in any doubt about the falsity of the witch-hunt whipped up by three loyal Tory propaganda sheets, she would have noted the alacrity with which her party vice-chairman Ben Bradley MP, after being threatened with legal action, deleted his libellous tweet that Corbyn had “sold British secrets” to foreign spies.
Bradley can’t have believed it either, but, in common with May, is prepared to wage the dirtiest necessary campaign to defeat Labour led by Corbyn.
Tories have frequently tried, in alliance with their venal media, to smear political opponents as agents of foreign powers or “the enemy within,” seeking to mesmerise the electorate into seeing their party as embodying the national interest.
Their role as the party of the City and inherited wealth is increasingly self-evident and Corbyn’s determination to tell it straight rather than meet the architects of capitalist austerity halfway, as recent Labour leaders have done, is making the Tories more desperate and vicious.
Once the Sarkocy mirage has dissipated, other more fanciful make-believe will take its place, making it all the more essential that Labour relies on class-based economic policies that put the interests of the many before those of a tiny rich elite.
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