New purge underway…

JVL Introduction

There are disturbing rumours circulating of ever more Labour Party members being served notices of investigation, on what appear the flimsiest of grounds – including some who have previously been exonerated of  charges now being revived.

This article from Skwawkbox makes painful reading.

JVL can offer support to those affected by the process; contact us at [email protected].

And a reminder about the Labour Activists for Justice (LA4J) Crowdfunder appeal – funds needed urgently!

This article was originally published by Skwawkbox on Fri 21 Aug 2020. Read the original here.

New purge underway as Labour re-suspends members already acquitted – and on the flimsiest of pretexts

Keir Starmer’s Labour has started a new purge of Labour members, including putting some members through ‘double jeopardy’ – suspending and potentially expelling them on complaints for which they were already investigated and acquitted by the party.

The purge is not limited to members, with some councillors also being suspended as the Labour right tries to retake seats they lost through democratic processes and in some cases through gross misconduct. Sandwell Council leader Yvonne Davies recently resigned, after a string of smears against her by discredited right-wingers were given credence by the party, accusing the right of ‘hounding her out’ before she could expose the extent of corruption (video).

Some have been re-suspended on complaints of antisemitism that were already investigated and dismissed – cases re-opened in spite of Labour’s supreme disciplinary body saying that in many complaints the ‘evidence’ was so flimsy that 90% of it had to be rejected on independent legal advice.

Others are being suspended on more generic grounds – and one well-known Labour, union and Orgreave activist in South Yorkshire has been sent a notice of investigation for withering comments made about Owen Smith during Smith’s ill-fated attempt to challenge Jeremy Corbyn for the party’s leadership four years ago, for which he had already been investigated and exonerated.

But ex-miner John Dunn was in no mood to take the right-wing move lying down, publishing a statement on his Facebook page:

Dunn gave Smith an earful when the right-winger – now back working as a pharmaceutical industry lobbyist – tried to exploit Orgeave during his leadership bid.

The party’s pretext for action against Dunn is not the weakest the SKWAWKBOX has received, but details cannot be published as those involved would be targeted by the party for breaching confidentiality – though as usual there are ample examples of the right leaking details of suspended members to their friends in the media – but numbers appear to be substantial.

The suspensions also come as key elections for nine places on Labour’s National Executive Committee (NEC) move forward. In this, they echo the purges that took place (and were subsequently proven by WhatsApp chats in the leaked Labour report) to try to reduce the number of Jeremy Corbyn supporters able to vote in the 2015 and 2016 leadership elections and of the suspension of whole constituency parties to try to protect right-wing MPs and their cronies.

Comments (21)

  • RH says:

    ‘Disgust’ is too weak a word.

  • Thomas Cooper says:

    Disgraceful. Your right l, like Trump target the electrate to ensure you get the result you want.

  • Martin Read says:

    Why, it’s almost as if the ‘leadership’ knows that the likes of the Guardian and the BBC will be waving it through unchallenged. No doubt the billionaire press will be onside with it.

    D’we think the Guardian will be dusting off Freedland?

  • Paul Smith says:

    Time for a JVL member to file a complaint re Hodge’s verbal assault on Corbyn? ‘Bringing the Labour Party into disrepute’ should do the job. After all, it was hardly a private discussion.

  • T P says:

    I am bloody horrified and outraged at what good people are going through. Starmer is the newest pathetic Witch Finder General purging us instead of attacking the evil racist corrupt right wing sabeoturs and doing the tories dirty work for them. Shocking. Please everyone stay strong and keep fighting for justice. We cannot let these depraved people win. Literally our lives depend on it.

  • CVA says:

    Maybe all the suspended Labour members can stand as independent Cllrs in their LAs this coming May against the right wing Labour Cllrs that are part of this witch hunt of socialist members, and teach them a lesson they aren’t going to easily forget.

  • Sabine Ebert-Forbes says:

    It is the lack of moral fibre that shocks and disgusts me. I feel betrayed and I believe that they do not deserve all those brilliant members who have been out campaigning in all weather’s year in year out.

  • John Thatcher says:

    The Left have to realise that this is a concerted campaign to remove all left influence from the party,with what can only be described as Stalinist tactics.War has been declared,time to pick up the cudgels of truth and righteous indignation against these people.

  • Graeme Atkinson says:

    The witch-hunt against John Dunn is outrageous beyond words. It is vile.

    I have known John since Easter 1973, just a few weeks before 18 of his fellow miners at Markham Colliery tragically lost their lives when the cage they were travelling in crashed into the pit shaft bottom.

    None of his cowardly and spineless detractors ever had to contend with that. Nor did they ever have to emerge from a brutal assault in the darkness like he did, on a cold and windy Monday night during a mass picket, early in the miners’ strike, at Cresswell Colliery when Thatcher’s thugs in blue waded in to batter unarmed striking miners with truncheons,batons and illegal clubs.

    I was there that night, a matter of four or five feet away, and the sickening sound of the impact on John’s head will live with me for ever. How John, a former Labour councillor and NUM activist, was not killed by the sheer ferocity of the blow that night, I will never know.

    John sustained that and 12 months of appalling hardship in Great Strike – not for money – but for collieries, jobs, our community and its unique trade union, the National Union of MIneworkers.

    John Dunn is worth a million of any single one of the political scabs now hounding him and it is great that the JVL – many of whose members were steadfast in their support for our community in 1984/1985 – is supporting him.

    The witch-hunt is taking place because what happened at Orgreave on 18, 19 and 20 June 1984 is a festering sore on this country’s body politic. Again the might of the State was deployed to brutalise striking miners.

    Instead of fighting to get this case reopened and lifting the lid on the orchestrated police riot at Orgreave, the leadership of the Labour Party and its bureaucratic apparatus is mobilising a second attack on the miners by witch-hunting John Dunn, a socialist, an anti-fascist and a fighter against antisemitism and racism.

    The witch-hunters should hang their heads in shame. They do not belong to anything I would recognise as a labour movement.

  • Max cook says:

    The party has left me hanging for the last 15 months on spurious anti-Semitism charges, they keep taking my subs every month but NO right of knowing what is going on.
    Starmer LIED to get the leadership and now he’s trying to get rid of we on the left, aided and abetted by the BoD and JLM I’m sure.
    This is no longer the worker’s or movement of the MANY.

  • Bonny Ambrose says:

    Great reply from John Dunn. Keep that wonderful fighting spirit. It’s what we all need. ✊🏻

  • Christine Ladyman says:

    This borders on the criminal, to revisit already dismissed accusations! Do we have another Trump in the making… and calling himself Labour!?!?
    This could, should end the whole Party. To revisit these old stories yet totally ignoring those from the leaked report? No integrity, no honour.

  • Peter Gerard Cann says:

    What fighting spirit. No retreat!

  • Ray Mooney says:

    I was the Chair of North Norfolk CLP and received an email on the 2nd June administratively suspending me for antisemitic FB posts.
    The CLP Sec was told about the suspension by Eastern Region and when she told them I was the CLP Chair and had been for Three years the said that they didn’t know that!
    I submitted a detailed defense that was to be submitted to the NEC but still had heard nothing by the end of July.
    I was so outraged at the payment of £600k of members money with no consultation or endorsement by the NEC despite the legal advice that we would win the case, the sacking of RLB and then no action being taken against Barry Sherman MP for his blatant antisemitic Tweet about silver shekels that I emailed my resignation to the Governance and legal unit, the unit that had suspended me and to date I have received no acknowledgement or correspondence.

  • DJ says:

    Notices of investigation being issued like confetti by ill informed party functionaries to appease the establishment, the JLM and the BOD. This has nothing to do with anti semitism. This is a blatant attempt to rid the party of anybody who is willing to campaign for anything that resembles socialism or internationalism. What has the Labour Party leadership done to support the Tower Hamlets Council workers and why is it silent on the daily bombings of Gaza? I am outraged!

  • Allan Howard says:

    DJ: You can hardly be appeasing yourself! Starmer is part of the establishment, and more than happy to work towards eradicating the left from the political sphere, and everything he’s doing is designed to that end.

    I mean if Tony Blair were the leader again, and doing what Starmer has been doing, no-one would think for one millisecond that he was appeasing anyone, and nor is Starmer.

  • Emma says:

    Keep highlighting the truth , any injustice must be exposed in order to move forward.of all the times when we need an opposition that has integrity at its heart the time is now however I fear under the new leadership this does not seem to be the case now.

  • Anthony Baldwin says:

    The Party is relying on people being ‘good members’ and complying absolutely with their demands not to disclose why we are being ‘processed’ as a result of anonymous complaints.
    Why are the complainants granted anonymity? If they have the courage to complain they should have the courage to face those they accuse. If they can’t do that then they should crawl back under whatever rock they first emerged from.
    Of course you have to remember Catch 22 which in this case implying that there has ever been ‘plot’ to remove members of the Left from voting or expressing their right to free speech and to criticise the Apartheid State of Israel in order to advance the possibility of a just and lasting peace in the seventy odd year neo-colonialist conflict.
    We need a Face Book Page where everyone who has been unjustly accused can post there ‘offence’ and also report their unanswered. complaints against members such as Mandelson, Hodge, Blair, Watson and some of those who are no longer with us for their actions of AS or bringing the Party into Disrepute: the famous catch all accusation for which there appears to be no escape unless you happen to be a New Labour supporting member.
    We certainly cannot continue in this manner. Solidarity is required and should be shown to all who are unjustly attacked.

  • John Adrian Burns says:

    Solidarity with John D: the whole thing since Starmer… has become totally depressing. And it just gets worse. If you don’t fight the forces of darkness then you’ll inevitably have to play by their rules; and lose!
    On the immediate plight of John, here’s a thing: why is it that when a (so called) Labour Peer finances – to the tune of £8M – the Lib – Dem’s 2019 general election campaign. That is not not seen as supporting another Party and their candidates, and that person should be automatically expelled from the Party, as laid down the L.P. rule book? The matter referred to above cost us seats in London, I’m still angry about it! And I am just as angry about fifth columnists being rewarded with our cash, not to mention others being treated likewise with tax payers money when rewarded with a seat in the H.o.L’s

  • DJ says:

    Allan Howard. I agree, Keir Starmer is part of the establishment. The point I was trying to make relates to the process whereby staffers issue notices of investigation. It appears to me that they have been issued on the basis of an interpretation of the IHRA definition of anti semitism. This definition which denies free speech on Israel was adopted in September 2018 by the NEC before Keir Starmer became leader. This is what has caused members on the left to face investigation. The latest edict from the General Secretary to deny members the opportunity to challenge this definition is telling. He is clearly acting on instructions from Keir Starmer here. Keir Starmer is on a mission to make the Labour Party an acceptable option for the establishment. I think we both agree on this.

  • Oliver says:

    Why not start a NEW party

Comments are now closed.