This is the third in a series of blogs examining the hard left groups that are supporting Corbyn and working to take the Labour Party to the left. It is too easy to relax and enjoy the prospect of a permanent Conservative government while Corbyn leads the Labour Party but we need to understand the resurgence of a hard left political class, to recognise some of their movers and shakers and to be aware of their tactics in grasping for power at any price.
The Stop The War Coalition describes itself as being founded in September 2001 in the weeks following 9/11, when George W. Bush announced the “war on terror”. They claim to have been dedicated to preventing and ending the wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya and elsewhere. Stop the War opposes what they describe as “the British establishment’s disastrous addiction to war and its squandering of public resources on militarism.” They claim to have initiated many campaigns around these issues and are committed to “supporting Palestinian rights, opposing racism and Islamophobia and to the defence of civil liberties.”
Who are their leading lights? Well, I suppose it is no surprise to see their Patrons include Diane Abbott MP; Tam Dalyell MP; Salma Yaqoob formerly of the Respect Party; George Galloway, also of the Respect Party and London Mayoralty candidate; Mark Rylance and Brian Eno, a pair of London luvvies who might do better to stick to the stage; Anas Altikriti who is the CEO and Founder of The Cordoba Foundation, a UK think tank which examines and comments on the relationship between the Muslim world and the west and I wonder where there funding comes from? We also have Alice Mahon, an ex-Labour MP and Corbyn-style rebel; Mark Serwotka, General Secretary of the Public & Commercial Services Union; Lindsey German an ex-member of and employee of the Socialist Workers Party and a failed London Mayoral candidate.
Comrade Corby was Chairman of Stop the War Coalition until recently and remains a firm supporter.
If you have the stomach for it, here is a link to their web site: http://www.stopwar.org.uk/.
Interestingly, I can find no reference to their finances or their backers. Who is bank-rolling this outfit? How do they pay for their staff and their protest activities? How can we be sure no public, taxpayer funding is finding its way into their coffers? when will they submit accounts for public scrutiny?