‘Stop Arming Ukraine,’ Former UK Labour Party Leader Jeremy Corbyn Demands in Interview with Pro-Hezbollah TV Channel
Jeremy Corbyn — the former far-left leader of the British Labour Party whose tenure was marked by a series of scandals around antisemitism — has urged western countries to stop arming Ukraine as it defends itself from Russia’s invasion.
In an extensive interview with the Lebanese broadcaster Al Mayadeen TV, which is closely aligned with the Iranian-backed terrorist organization Hezbollah, Corbyn bemoaned the western resolve to assist Ukraine in its confrontation with Russia, saying that “pouring arms in isn’t going to bring about a solution, it’s only going to prolong and exaggerate this war.”
In his remarks on Russia, Corbyn emphasized what he depicted as the unbreakable dependence of European states like Germany on oil and natural gas supplied by Moscow. “There has to be an understanding of the need for those energy supplies, albeit I would hope in the longer term, a reduction in fossil fuel burning,” Corbyn said, before opining that “the German economy is going to suffer very greatly because of this. They cannot exist without Russian gas.”
Corbyn already has a reputation for supporting Russian President Vladimir Putin during moments of international crisis. On one infamous occasion in 2016, he failed to condemn the poisoning with a deadly chemical agent of a former Russian KGB officer and his daughter who had fled to the UK, at the hands of Russian state agents. Two years later, he actively cast doubt on whether Russia was responsible for the attack on British soil, arguing that it could have been executed by criminal elements and not the Kremlin.
Corbyn also spent large parts of the interview discussing the Middle East situation along with the consistent accusations of antisemitism that dogged his five year term as Labour Party leader. Corbyn resigned as leader following Labour’s heavy defeat in the 2019 election, which saw the ruling Conservatives gain 80 seats in Britain’s House of Commons. In 2020, the new leader of the Labour Party, Sir Keir Starmer, suspended Corbyn from Labour’s parliamentary faction after the latter claimed that the scale of the antisemitism problem during his leadership term had been “dramatically overstated for political reasons by our opponents inside and outside the party.”
A similarly uncompromising line was delivered during the Al Mayadeen interview, with Corbyn insisting that the 1917 Balfour Declaration, which committed Britain to supporting a Jewish state in Palestine, amounted to a “historical wrong” against the Palestinians.
Asked about the antisemitism scandals, Corbyn indignantly replied that “the way I was dealt with in the Labour Party, and the allegations made against me were shameful.”
He went on to insinuate the his leadership had been targeted by a powerful international conspiracy. “I faced clear threats from some military figures when I was elected,” Corbyn said. “First, there were statements against me from Benjamin Netanyahu, Donald Trump, and a group of other personalities, and it showed me how strong the forces opposed to me were.”
Much of their opposition was rooted in hostility to Corbyn’s support for the Palestinians, he claimed, pledging that “this will remain my position, and has always been, and will remain in the future.”
- 3 August, 2022
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