Wild accusations, alternative facts, special prosecutors—the Salem witch trials of 1692 had it all. Sound familiar?
Witch-hunts from Salem to McCarthy are rooted in preserving the material interests of powerful people who ruthlessly exploit fear and prejudice to undermine those who threaten their privileged position.
The current anti-semitic hysteria, generated by a toxic mix of Tories, Blairites fearing re-selection, right wing self-styled representatives of the ‘Jewish community’, cheered on and encouraged by a feral media, meets all the classical traits of the witch-hunt.
The latest body-blow to the Labour Movement and, allegedly, further proof that anti-semitism is a ‘problem’ for Corbyn’s Labour Party is the resignation of Sir David Garrard, who according to the headline in the so-called quality Observer, ‘ditches Labour over anti-semitism.’
Garrard exemplifies the forces being mobilised to undermine Corbyn. He was loyal to Blair, Brown and Miliband. He was listed by the Sunday Times Rich List with a fortune in excess of £100 million.
Following the discovery of a loan to Labour in the course of the Cash for Honours political scandal, Garrard withdrew his nomination for a peerage. When Corbyn was elected leader of the Labour Party, he immediately called for the loan to be repaid.
Leon Trotsky famously stated, repeated years later by George Brown, ‘No ruling group ever leaves the scene without a struggle, and that means a struggle with no holds barred.’
It’s the job of the leadership, not to bend to this pressure by sacrificing individuals in the hope that this will assuage the appetite of the beast. The right wing will never be satisfied until the ideas of Socialism are buried. The policy should be to intensify the campaign against austerity and to call out the lies of the right wing for what they are. No more apologising, go on the offensive, elevate the campaign for the Socialist alternative to the brutal anti-working class policies of the Tories and their shadows on Labour’s back benches.
McCarthy and the Salem witch-hunters were eventually exposed as charlatans and phonies, and not a little insane. Stand firm and the current onslaught will suffer the same fate.