The Labour Party is now a threat to our national security, our economic security and your family’s security.” This was the way in which David Cameron greeted Jeremy Corbyn’s victory on twitter. None of the usual parliamentary niceties, straight onto scare-mongering. In case the message had been lost, Cameron’s tweet was followed by a video produced by Conservative Party HQ full of images of gun touting ISIS terrorists running around in tanks and jeeps waving black flags.
Within the space of 24 hours we’ve gone from the idea that Tories were cheering Corbyn for making Labour unelectable for the next 100 years (and even infiltrating the party to vote for him) to him being a threat to national security.
The level of media hysteria, manipulation and hostility is unprecedented. The BBC lost any pretence of balance and neutrality and proceeded to parade all those who had said Corbyn could never win the selection to explain how he can never win a general election.
The Sun headlined: “Labour in meltdown – Corbyn to abolish the Army”. The Express described him “as a threat to Britain” and the Daily Mail warned “Corbyn union pals pledge strike chaos”. The business paper City AM highlighted Corbyn’s friendship with the “evil dictator” Hugo Chavez.
Even nastier attacks were reserved for “IRA friend” John McDonnell on his appointment as Shadow Chancellor. The Daily Torygraph described him as “a man from cloud cuckoo land”, while the Daily Mail screamed that he “wants to nationalise the banks, renationalise the railways and hammer the rich”!
This virulent reaction on the part of all sections of the ruling class and their media is not by chance. It is a reflection of their very real fear of what Jeremy Corbyn represents: mass popular support for a politician who challenges the establishment, opposes austerity and imperialist wars, and describes himself as a socialist.
The campaign has adopted the same hysterical tone and disregard for accuracy that the capitalist media used against Hugo Chavez, against Podemos in Spain, and against Syriza before Tsipras signed the Memorandum. The reasons are the same. They are mortally afraid of anyone who appears as challenging the whole established order, as they know that such ideas can very quickly connect with millions of working people and youth who are fed up with the status quo.
Cameron’s tweet also means, and it should be noted, that the ruling class did not consider the Labour Party under Harman, Milliband, Brown – and, even less, Tony Blair – as a threat of any kind.
Yes, it is important to discuss in detail the very progressive aspects of Corbyn’s policies, and above all how their implementation can only be possible by fundamentally challenging the logic of the capitalist system. That the ruling class is so frightened is an indication that we are on the right path.
Written by Jorge Martín / Wednesday, 16 September 2015