George Galloway in London Assembly bid


by Leon
24th January, 2008 at 4:58 pm    

george galloway

In a surprise move George Galloway is seeking election to the London Assembly this May.

George Galloway is to run for the London Assembly in May’s elections as part of a “progressive list”. He promised the group would gather a “broad coalition” of left-wingers who would promote “Old Labour values”.

Mr Galloway, MP for Bethnal Green and Bow, has taken the decision amid splits within the anti-war Respect coalition. John Rees, the coalition’s general secretary, said he was sure the party would still “do very well without him”. Mr Galloway denied he had left Respect. [Via BBC News Online]

He denies leaving Respect yet isn’t running under their name? Sounds like Galloway is using the coming elections as a dry run for the creation of a new party. Still if he wins I’m sure at least one Labour MP will be sighing with relief having not relished the thought of facing him in a General Election…


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  1. Katy Newton — on 24th January, 2008 at 5:10 pm  

    Oh no, please, no, not Galloway.

  2. Leon — on 24th January, 2008 at 5:29 pm  

    In a sense GG’s detractors should be hoping this comes true; being an Assembly Member has far less significance at present than being an MP. In my view the sooner he’s buggers off fully into media whoring land the better. But given the choice, wouldn’t political marginalisation be a more realistic hope?

    I’ve never been a big fan of him but my pragmatic view that he was useful in broadening the parameters of permissible debate has been eroded by his egotistical stupidity.

    A great start at the US Senate followed by a fantastic stint on Sky News has led to almost nothing (increasing his bank balance aside)…that said he does deserve some small credit for giving the SWP exactly what they deserve; very public scrutiny!

  3. douglas clark — on 24th January, 2008 at 5:47 pm  

    Leon,

    You’ve got to admire his bottle, the US Senate performance was a tour de force.

    Oh me, oh my, I recall when I was a delivery boy seeing some permatanned guy driving an open top Mercedes down Dumbarton Road. He had a ‘see me’ look about him. Someone told me that that was George Galloway. There is nothing about him that has changed, much. He makes a great living out of self aggrandisement.

    You can expect the usual Harry’s Place regulars to be along shortly to explain the nuance’s of the Respect bust up.

  4. Refresh — on 24th January, 2008 at 6:55 pm  

    ‘ – Mr Galloway still plans to challenge Transport Minister Jim Fitzpatrick in his Poplar and Limehouse seat.

    If he does participate in that east London constituency at the next general election, he will be hoping to claim his second Labour scalp. ‘

    I do hope he takes out another Labour MP. There should be no rest for the wicked.

  5. Refresh — on 24th January, 2008 at 7:16 pm  

    ‘But given the choice, wouldn’t political marginalisation be a more realistic hope?’

    But why would you want to have him marginalised?

  6. fiz — on 24th January, 2008 at 9:24 pm  

    maybe a tory surge in B&B now respect are out of the game?

  7. hari — on 24th January, 2008 at 10:35 pm  

    Fiz.
    George is supporting a Jamaat e Islami activist, Abjol Miah in Bethnal.

    There may be a story about George misusing his Parliamentary staff and offices to run a media business coming along soon.

  8. fugstar — on 24th January, 2008 at 11:05 pm  

    jamat e islami doesnt exist in the uk. surely the potential respect candidate doesnt deserve the usual smears.

    ruhanna ali can try to get as far as she can. may the person with the ability to best serve the people in the place end up winning.

    surely the zeal of some of the meanies would be better placed killing more iraqis or buggering up palestine further. whats with the declaration of war on your fellow citizens?

  9. Refresh — on 25th January, 2008 at 12:32 am  

    Hari
    ‘There may be a story about George misusing his Parliamentary staff and offices to run a media business coming along soon.;

    There may be?

    We don’t debate through smears on Pickled Politics anymore. Be gone!

  10. bikhair — on 25th January, 2008 at 2:19 am  

    I love when he says Aberdeen.

  11. hari — on 25th January, 2008 at 7:42 am  

    Jamaat runs the Islamic Forum Europe at the East End Mosque.
    Miah is one of there boys.
    look it up.

  12. fiz — on 25th January, 2008 at 10:09 am  

    respect were a single issue based party- their support in B&B is virtually non-existent now, and Galloway knows this- but does anyone know who’s on the tories shortlist for B&B?

  13. Sid — on 25th January, 2008 at 10:29 am  

    jamat e islami doesnt exist in the uk.

    In addition to the points made by hari in #11, Jamaat also have high level members in the Muslim Council of Britain, and they often bring Jamaatis from Bangladesh to deliver khutba (sermons) in East London Mosque. They are also behind a number of publications/papers such as Euro Forum. They are also behind the financial organisation “First Choice” which was involved in a corrupt money-remittance scam (which is another story in itself) and collapsed spectacularly last year wiping out the savings of many ordinary Bangladeshis in east London.

  14. Sofia — on 25th January, 2008 at 10:45 am  

    “You’ve got to admire his bottle, the US Senate performance was a tour de force”

    He’s slimey..like most politicians..and had dubious links to saddam..but hey ho..so did the rest of the world…Oil for food anyone…

    As for the above commment…i do agree..it was one of the best tv performances ever…

  15. The Common Humanist — on 25th January, 2008 at 11:15 am  

    I didn’t know ‘Old Labour Values’ included being a stodge for Nazi inspired Ba’athists……

    I mean, He was the first far right MP so it stands to reason he wants to poison the well of the London Assembly too.

  16. Sid — on 25th January, 2008 at 11:24 am  

    Excep technically speaking, Ba’athists were always secular socialists of the Pan-Arab kind. This is why the Reagan-era US hated Saddam first (he was a “fucking Red”) but backed him in the first Persian Gulf war because they hated the Iranians more.

  17. Rumbold — on 25th January, 2008 at 11:26 am  

    Does anyone still respect George Galloway?

  18. Sid — on 25th January, 2008 at 11:34 am  

    Does anyone still respect George Galloway?

    Abjol Miah and the primarily Bangladeshi supporters of his proxy Jamaati Islamist politics, who have fallen foul of the most retarded religious-identity politics, in the East End most certainly do.

  19. Rumbold — on 25th January, 2008 at 11:46 am  

    I meant anyone worth listening to.

  20. douglas clark — on 25th January, 2008 at 11:54 am  

    Sofia,

    I was seeing politics as a game when I wrote that. No, Rumbold, we saw through Gorgeous George a long time ago. Still and all, saying what he did to a US Senate committee was brave and neccesary. In the sense that they do not, in fact, rule the world. As no-one from Harry’s Place seems to be interested, I’d just say that, whilst that was his high spot, his low spot was telling Saddam that he ‘saluted his indefatigability’ whatever that means….it certainly made him look a fool in my eyes.

  21. The Common Humanist — on 25th January, 2008 at 11:55 am  

    Sid, politics is a circle, anyone as hard left as GG often morphs into a hard rightist or is indistinguishable because the two positions are almost identical.

    Ba’athism has its roots in the disturbing Arab fondness for nazism in the 30′s and 40′s.

    The ‘red’ elements that the Americans mis-read (big surprise there) are the command economy and stalinist approach to murdering oppponents. These are also central tennants of nazism and hence ba’athism.

    However, I think we can all agree that he is a totalitarean dictator loving arsehole of the highest order.

    Old Labour values. Don’t make me laugh. When the Labour Party was camapigning against Ba’athism in the 80′s GG was its biggest defender.

    He is a cock IMHO. And one of the last people on the globe worthy of anyones respect – bit like George Bush, Cheney, Saddam Hussein and his odoiuous sons and Rumsfeld.

  22. Sid — on 25th January, 2008 at 11:56 am  

    I meant anyone worth listening to.

    That’s very subjective isn’t it? Some people obviously think the clowns in Respect and Respect 2 are worth listening to.

  23. Rumbold — on 25th January, 2008 at 12:01 pm  

    Douglas:

    Galloway was certainly impressive in the Senate, but I would hardly call it a ‘brave’ performance.

    Sid:

    “That’s very subjective isn’t it?”

    Yes.

  24. douglas clark — on 25th January, 2008 at 12:02 pm  

    Rumbold,

    How’s the Indian trip going? Apart from the use of the horn on which you have waxed lyrical, I’d expected to hear a lot more about your excursions. Is it what you thought it would be or not?

  25. Sid — on 25th January, 2008 at 12:02 pm  

    TCH, I agree totally with you, the hard left and the hard right are often indistinguishable in the nexus where they meet, but …

    Ba’athism has its roots in the disturbing Arab fondness for nazism in the 30’s and 40’s

    …this is where you and many others are wrong. From wiki

    The Arab Socialist Ba’th Party (also spelled Baath or Ba’ath; Arabic: حزب البعث العربي الاشتراكي) was founded in Damascus in the 1940′s as the original secular Arab nationalist movement, to combat Western colonial rule. In Arabic, baath means renaissance or resurrection. It functioned as a pan-Arab party with branches in different Arab countries, but was strongest in Syria and Iraq, coming to power in both countries in 1963. In 1966 the Syrian and Iraqi parties split into two rival organizations mainly for ideological reasons-the “Qotri” (or ‘Regionalist’) Syria-based party being aligned with the Soviet Union while the “Qawmi” (or ‘Nationalist’) Iraq-based party adopted a generally more centrist stance. Both Ba’th parties retained the same name and maintain parallel structures in the Arab world.

  26. douglas clark — on 25th January, 2008 at 12:12 pm  

    Rumbold,

    Maybe ‘brave’ is the wrong word. I certainly thought he showed ‘bottle’, or trapped animal syndrome. His speech was a line in the sand to the US Senate, and there aren’t many folk that would have had the guts to do that. Recall, if you will, the ludicrous HUAC, which whilst a congressional beast, still showed America at it’s worst.

    On the record, I don’t think a lot of Galloway, apart from that.

  27. Rumbold — on 25th January, 2008 at 12:13 pm  

    Douglas:

    It is a very interesting trip, and I would recommend it to anyone who wanted to experience it. Howevever, the constant attempts to sell me something got tiring very fast, and has made it harder to engage in conversation with Indians, on the basis that anyone who talks to you in the street or at a monument will try and part you from your money, even if they do not say so at first. That is why I am only going to stay for a month, rather than two months.

  28. Refresh — on 25th January, 2008 at 12:17 pm  

    Well lets see -

    ‘Old Labour values. Don’t make me laugh. When the Labour Party was camapigning against Ba’athism in the 80’s GG was its biggest defender.’

    Do you have evidence for that?

    The left was united in condemning Saddam Hussein, long before everyone else joined in. And they only joined in as a consequence of the build-up to the first Gulf War.

    On the whole you are building your arguments without evidence. But wasn’t that why and how he wrecked Coleman’s Senate hearing, by challenging the so called ‘evidence’.

    To muddy the water further, didnt some then go on to accuse him about doing uncharitable work with his charity? SO what became of that? No further action.

    Food for oil? No further action.

    When I first joined in discussions on PP, it was a prominent founding memeber of PP who said the guy was corrupt. I reminded him that he may be libelling GG. And when challenged he gave us a link to all the evidence. And you know what it was? It was a link to Harry’s Place.

    And we all know Harry’s Place to be the busted flush that it is.

    Now who else is on HP’s hit list: Ken Livingstone.

    Some of us joined the dots a long time ago.

  29. Jai — on 25th January, 2008 at 12:27 pm  

    Rumbold,

    Howevever, the constant attempts to sell me something got tiring very fast, and has made it harder to engage in conversation with Indians, on the basis that anyone who talks to you in the street or at a monument will try and part you from your money, even if they do not say so at first.

    Well, everyone gets that in the more “touristy” parts of the country, if it’s obvious that you’re a tourist and/or affluent (yes, Asian visitors from the West constantly get that too). The most effective approach is to just keep walking and ignore them, or (if they really ambush you) to just politely say “No” and briskly keep moving.

    It’s irritating at first but you get used to it once you figure out how to effectively deal with it. Don’t let it spoil your trip or cause you to cut it short.

  30. Sid — on 25th January, 2008 at 12:33 pm  

    I digree with David T of HP on many things but am absolutely with him on the line he takes on the corrosive effect of Respect and Galloway. You have to be a fool not to see retarded sectarianism of the religious identity politics of Respect.

  31. hari — on 25th January, 2008 at 12:35 pm  

    Very few campaigned against Saddam in the 80s.
    Ann Clwyd was one.
    George claimed that he did, but there is no evidence.
    No one can find any record of him being a “founder member” of CARDRI as he claims.

    In the 90s Galloway clearly became closer and closer to the Iraqi regime.And the use of by the regime of friendly, mainly French and Russian politicians, plus George, to carry out their aims is well documented.
    And the flow of Cash from the Oil Fraud is well documented.
    Not just to Georges Appeal remember,also his wife got $270,000.

    Those who argue that Galloway was in fact supporting the Iraqi people may like to ponder how his grovelling before the rapist Uday Hussein was part of this.
    Let alone how using the proceeds of a fraud on the Iraqi people to campaign for the Ba’athist air force to fly over Halabja would help those gassed ten years earlier.

  32. Refresh — on 25th January, 2008 at 12:35 pm  

    Now consider this. Given all the heinous crimes of the politicians which resulted in a million deaths why is it you find it so much easier to go for those that spoke out against their murderous folly, than those directly responsible?

    Its morality gone mad!

  33. hari — on 25th January, 2008 at 12:42 pm  

    Refresh,
    Plenty of people opposed the war including the BNP and corrupt politicians in the pay of Saddam (including some who have admitted it)
    Are you saying we should cut them some slack?

  34. Refresh — on 25th January, 2008 at 12:46 pm  

    I am sorry Sid, we’ve been through all this before. Its sectarian because of what? Because Respect was seen as appealing to the bangldeshi muslims in Bethnal & Bow?

    As I understand it 60% of his support came from non-muslim, non-bengalis. That is how he won.

    It was due to the failure of New Labour on many many fronts, the most prominent of which was the Iraq war.

    Remarkably DavidT and HP are probably the most devisive of the neocon figures active in the UK, and yet its GG you are focussed on. Just look at the hatchet job being done by him, them, Martin Bright, Nick Cohen etc. On Livingstone.

    I won’t claim anyone is a fool, but I will say this GG has been a target to undermine any anti-war sentiment. And why should it continue? Because there is still Iran on the to-do list.

    Whether you like it or not he managed to achieve a phenomenal amount. He bloodied Blair’s nose, by winning in Bethnal. That was the political message.

    And why was he kicked out of the Labour Party: because he called Bush and Blair wolves sending our lions into Iraq.

  35. Sid — on 25th January, 2008 at 12:47 pm  

    Refresh, Saddam was also responsible for a million plus deaths. The question is, was a war of regime change justified to get rid of him while simultaneulsy fondly stroking the scrotums of other murderous totalitarians which the US is wont to do? I’d say no.

  36. Ravi Naik — on 25th January, 2008 at 12:47 pm  

    “Now consider this. Given all the heinous crimes of the politicians which resulted in a million deaths why is it you find it so much easier to go for those that spoke out against their murderous folly, than those directly responsible?”

    Galloway was not just anti-Iraq war, he was a friend of Saddam, at a time when everyone knew the atrocities committed against Kurds and Iraqis. How can you possibly support such person?

    Galloway is no hero, he is an opportunist scumbag.

  37. Refresh — on 25th January, 2008 at 12:48 pm  

    Hari,

    ‘Plenty of people opposed the war including the BNP and corrupt politicians in the pay of Saddam (including some who have admitted it)
    Are you saying we should cut them some slack?’

    Who is ‘we’? You cut slack to anyone you like. But do not attempt to take us with you without evidence. That game has been played for far too long.

  38. hari — on 25th January, 2008 at 12:49 pm  

    As I understand it 60% of his support came from non-muslim, non-bengalis. That is how he won.

    Have you a source for that?

    Galloway himself credited the Islamic Forum of Europe for his victory.

  39. Sid — on 25th January, 2008 at 12:50 pm  

    I’d say its possible to hate the politics of Respect and simultaneously say fuck off to war mongering/ torture supporting liars like Nick Cohen.

  40. Refresh — on 25th January, 2008 at 12:50 pm  

    Ravi,

    ‘Galloway was not just anti-Iraq war, he was a friend of Saddam, at a time when everyone knew the atrocities committed against Kurds and Iraqis. How can you possibly support such person?

    Galloway is no hero, he is an opportunist scumbag.’

    My point is evidence. Where is the evidence? Smears and slurs won’t cut it.

  41. douglas clark — on 25th January, 2008 at 12:51 pm  

    Refresh,

    There has been an enormous amount of mud chucked at Galloway. None of it has stuck. He makes a comfortable living out of liable (sp?) actions against those who are daft enough to prosecute him.

    It doesn’t mean that punters like me can’t make a decision on whether or not he should be trusted. In my case, I don’t think he is anything much more than a career politician, willing to play whatever communalist politics it takes. Maybe that’s just me.

    On your other point, I first found PP through a reference on Harry’s Place. Surprisingly, I found this site largely reflected my own views, and I found some folk I would now count as friends. Whilst I find the Harrys Place commenters to be not among the brightest lights in the chandelier, I cannot, in all honesty, say that about the authors.

  42. Ravi Naik — on 25th January, 2008 at 12:53 pm  

    The point that Morgoth and other right-wing trolls make is that if you are anti-war then you are pro-Saddam, which is not true for most of us – Saddam was a horrid dictator who killed thousands of people. Yet, Galloway was a friend of Saddam – he did go to Iraq and openly shaked his hand before the war, as a sign of friendship.

    You really have to be an opportunist pig to do a stunt like that. He makes me sick to the core.

  43. Refresh — on 25th January, 2008 at 12:54 pm  

    ‘Have you a source for that?’

    Go ask him on his Talk show. Or ask for transcripts. Of the one show I listened to – that topic came up and he gave the figures. Now I’ve never seen that rebutted anywhere. And you know how many listeners are they waiting on his every word.

    Now back to where you started:

    ‘There may be a story about George misusing his Parliamentary staff and offices to run a media business coming along soon.’

    Do you want to elaborate?

  44. hari — on 25th January, 2008 at 12:56 pm  

    Would any of Galloways defenders like to explain why Georges wife got $270,000 of Oil for Food money deposited in her Jordaian Bank account.
    $120,000 deposited on the same day and from the same account that Georges appeal and Georges Press spokesman got payments.

    PS.
    There at least one ongoing perjury investigation into Georges evidence over Oil for Food.

  45. Ravi Naik — on 25th January, 2008 at 12:58 pm  

    Refresh, look at this clip from beginning to end.

  46. douglas clark — on 25th January, 2008 at 1:00 pm  

    Refresh,

    libel, blooming heck, even a dog with no brain such as me should be able to find that in the dictionary.

  47. Refresh — on 25th January, 2008 at 1:01 pm  

    Douglas

    ‘There has been an enormous amount of mud chucked at Galloway. None of it has stuck. He makes a comfortable living out of liable (sp?) actions against those who are daft enough to prosecute him.’

    That’s eaxactly the point. Why is so much thrown at him? He is after all just one man. This is what you have to look at.

    Ravi, I am not going to accept that he was a friend of Saddam’s. He makes you sick. Fine. But that’s just your view.

    In general, what I am saying is emotional commentary and outright lies do not make for a just argument.

  48. hari — on 25th January, 2008 at 1:02 pm  

    Not yet Refresh I dont.

  49. Refresh — on 25th January, 2008 at 1:07 pm  

    Hari

    ‘Not yet Refresh I dont.’

    Then it is nothing but hearsay.

    Get back to us with confirmed facts.

  50. Sid — on 25th January, 2008 at 1:12 pm  

    I am sorry Sid, we’ve been through all this before. Its sectarian because of what? Because Respect was seen as appealing to the bangldeshi muslims in Bethnal & Bow?

    Well not just Bangladeshis in Bethnal Green. Respect seems to be most popular in Muslim majority strongholds, such as following list of top Muslim populations by seat:

    Birmingham Sparkbrook Small Heath 49%
    Bethnal Green and Bow 39%
    Bradford West 38%
    East Ham 30%
    Birmingham Ladywood 29%
    Blackburn 26%
    Poplar/Canning Tow 25%
    West Ham 24%
    Bradford North 21%
    Ilford South 20%

  51. hari — on 25th January, 2008 at 1:14 pm  

    Wait and see.

    The comfirmed fact about his wife and the cash.

    What have you to say?

  52. The Common Humanist — on 25th January, 2008 at 1:20 pm  

    In what sense in David T a ‘Neocon’?

    He is a Labour supporting anti-totalitarean and anti-clerical fascist type but Neocon?

    That word appears to get lazily banded about now – the left wing equivalent of the US conservatives use of ‘liberal’ as a insult.

    Milne over at CIF has started to use it to mean ‘anyone who disagrees with him’.

    Frankly, tis a bit lazy.

    Anyway, back to Galloway, there were lots of Labour people, Anne Clywd being the most prominent who were very definately opposed to the one party states in the region, particularly Iraq. It helped that the then Conservative Govt was more then happy to sell arms to all of them. Opposing that was morally right and good politics.

    GG was definately not one of them. He was on the side of the Dictators.

  53. Refresh — on 25th January, 2008 at 1:23 pm  

    ‘GG was definately not one of them. He was on the side of the Dictators.’

    I am afraid you’re being lazy now. Where is the evidence?

  54. Refresh — on 25th January, 2008 at 1:25 pm  

    Sid,

    Should we be surprised that Respect has support amongst muslims?

    By the way, can you clarify what the figures show?

  55. douglas clark — on 25th January, 2008 at 1:28 pm  

    Refresh,

    Did George Galloway say ‘I support your indefatagability’ to Saddam Hussein, or not? There seems to be video evidence that he did. That is just daft, or opportunistic, I think.

  56. Sid — on 25th January, 2008 at 1:31 pm  

    Refresh, the figures show that there is a direct correlation between Respect popularity and the seats with the highest Muslim populations.

    Should we be surprised that Respect has support amongst muslims?

    Perhaps not but we should combine surprise with shear revulsion of where this kind of communalism will lead to. Who benefits from this? GG certainly, but Muslims? Has the history of the creation of Pakistan and where it has lead not taught us anything?

  57. Refresh — on 25th January, 2008 at 1:35 pm  

    Douglas,

    ‘Did George Galloway say ‘I support your indefatagability’ to Saddam Hussein, or not? There seems to be video evidence that he did. That is just daft, or opportunistic, I think.’

    Of course he did. And I’ve seen it used ad nauseum. I’ll never understand it – and I am sure he will forever regret it. As I am sure he does his part on Big Brother.

    I am also convinced he played a part in an attempt to undermine the sanctions which killed over 500,000. For that he should have no regrets, and should be congratulated. For some half a million dead was a ‘price worth paying’, and that was without any bombing.

  58. Refresh — on 25th January, 2008 at 1:44 pm  

    Sid,
    I understand your general point, but that is not quite how I see it.

    I believe that is how others would like to have us see it. Apart from the Lib Dems there was no other way to express their political views.

    This was a democratic expression of their disgust with neocon policies of Blair. It was a delight to see his nose bloodied. And in fact GG judged it correctly, from all we have read about the Bethnal & Bow campaign, it was the one that Blair feared the most.

    Here was someone whose expuslion he engineered for telling it like it was; only for him then come back fighting and take out one of his foot-soldiers. That takes some doing.

    As for communalism, I feared that more from Blair, John Reid et al and prominent players in the media. In how they tried to create divisions between muslims and the general population, through fear. That is communalism writ large.

  59. hari — on 25th January, 2008 at 1:57 pm  

    Are you proud that George (using the proceeds of fraud) campaigned against the no fly zones over the Shia South and Kurdish North.
    Or would you have preferred he succeeded?

    Saddams decisions to spend money on Palaces,buying off politicians and internal repression may have alleviated his peopls suffering don’t you think?

    After all,there was no shortage of smuggled goods in Iraq.

    Georges friends had no difficulty getting smuggled scotch.

    Fawaz was the Oil Money distributor by the way.
    ” Throughout our Baghdad days, the good works of Fawaz were never far away. His ample frame and twinkling smile were a frequent sight at our practically empty offices, and he would bearhug our boss and channel head Ron McKay, George Galloway’s closest business colleague, affectionately calling him habibi. (They seemed to know each other very well.) He was generous and charming to his new recruits and showed us around the threadbare capital and its lanterned gardens by the Tigris, and he urged us to patronise its struggling French film festival.

    He dined with us often in the capital’s smart quarter. In the top-notch Irbil restaurant he would hold court, flanked by Ron and his assistant. After dinner we’d suck on the hubble-bubble hillilahs and listen reverentially to his dream to create an English-language, pro-Iraq global TV operation. Hugely expensive bottles of Johnnie Walker would be procured”

    I note you have nothing to say about the fact that Galloways wife receiving Oil for Food cash.

  60. douglas clark — on 25th January, 2008 at 2:03 pm  

    Refresh,

    I am fairly sure that the evil consequences of sanctions – the least represented in Iraq being the victims of an internationalist, futile, attempt to leverage the Iraq government – will go down in history as evidence against such a ploy in the future.

    That said, it does not justify Galloways comment, does it?

  61. Refresh — on 25th January, 2008 at 2:05 pm  

    Douglas,

    No it never did.

  62. fiz — on 25th January, 2008 at 4:10 pm  

    Right- any Tories out there who can tell me who their fielding in B&B???

  63. Refresh — on 25th January, 2008 at 6:25 pm  

    Hari
    ‘I note you have nothing to say about the fact that Galloways wife receiving Oil for Food cash.’

    You’ve noted nothing. All these matters you keep bringing up have been debated endlessly. I suggest you go to HP for more.

  64. Ravi Naik — on 25th January, 2008 at 6:41 pm  

    “Of course he did. And I’ve seen it used ad nauseum. I’ll never understand it – and I am sure he will forever regret it. As I am sure he does his part on Big Brother.”

    But why do you assume he regrets anything he has done? Did he every say he was sorry? No, he did not. Why are you giving the benefit of the doubt? There are so many decent people who are against the war, what is so special about GG?

  65. Refresh — on 26th January, 2008 at 1:22 am  

    Ravi, I don’t know if he regrets it or not. Actually you are right, I mustn’t presume. I am sure he will have given an answer to that on may occasions.

    ‘There are so many decent people who are against the war, what is so special about GG?’

    To be fair, the question is why do his detractors make him special?

    For me someone who can take on the the highest in the land, and in the US, and succeed taking the public with him – then there is something about him.

  66. fugstar — on 26th January, 2008 at 1:29 am  

    hari
    so what? big deal. does that automatically make him not one of ‘your’ guys. whats with the blocking tactics. if he’s good for the place he’ll do well if he has no political skill he won’t. what insane reason have you got for taking out someone elses grudge on someone who has commited no crime to you or the people of the area.

    unless you have a problem with people merely existing?

    i think a cleverly chosen tory with practical sense and local love could pull off a barnstormer next time around. Or some indie.

    The contestation for such seats is one of the political channels for the maturation of the communities. its only real arses (media hacks with axes that they should use on themselves) who fancy suffocating them. Even labour activists at the time were kinda taken by pleasant suprise of the goings on in B&B.. that it was good for democracy.

    for the rest of the country its important that more small parties or independants succeed, and that noninbred political actors can get a lookin. people shouldnt let their hate for certain figures mess up their judgement.

    Crying “Communalisation” is lame, bengies are in all the parties, what a load of confused subcontinental incontinent misdirection.

  67. Clairwil — on 26th January, 2008 at 3:45 am  

    ‘I note you have nothing to say about the fact that Galloways wife receiving Oil for Food cash.’

    Good God! Maybe I’m alone in not being obsessed with George Galloway. But my recollection of his wife and the cash was hearing the allegation and then nothing. Like I said I’m not obsessed by George Galloway so perhaps I missed the outcome of the investigation. Can someone elaborate and then we can all comment.

  68. Refresh — on 26th January, 2008 at 8:02 pm  

    TCH

    Milne over at CIF has started to use it to mean ‘anyone who disagrees with him’.

    I read Milnes article, this one I think

    ‘The political choice facing London could not be clearer

    The current onslaught on Ken Livingstone is driven by a neocon agenda, but the fallout could have a far wider social impact ‘

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/story/0,,2245797,00.html

    And yes I agree with him.

    Whilst we are on the subject, have a look at his excellent piece today:

    ‘Wall comes tumbling down

    The inspiring breakout of Palestinians from their imprisonment in Gaza is a timely reminder that this is a people who cannot be caged or wished away’

    http://commentisfree.guardian.co.uk/seumas_milne/2008/01/wall_comes_tumbling_down.html

    And I agree with him there too.

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