TORY prime minister, David Cameron, is all set to make the biggest gamble of his political life on Wednesday by pushing forward a parliamentary vote on going to war in Syria.
After losing a vote to wage war to oust the legitimate government of Bashar al-Assad two years ago, Cameron knows that losing on Wednesday will undermine his premiership so much that resignation is the only option. In his desperation, Cameron, ruling with a wafer-thin majority, is relying exclusively on the treachery of the right-wing gang of Labour MPs who, in their support for Cameron and imperialist wars, are preparing to dump Jeremy Corbyn, who opposes war, and so split the Labour Party irrevocably.
All weekend Tory ministers have been phoning their ‘friends’ amongst Labour MPs to stiffen their resolve to prop up Cameron and the Tories and carry through this decisive split. According to reports in the press, Labour Party insiders are estimating that as many as 115 Labour MPs are preparing to vote with the Tories while three quarters of Corbyn’s shadow cabinet support war.
This group of right-wingers are further planning to launch their own coup to oust Corbyn as leader. After his overwhelming victory in the leadership elections which saw their candidates crushed, these plotters ran away from attempting to remove Corbyn fearing that as the incumbent he would automatically secure a place in any further list of contenders – in which case he would not only be re-elected but with an even bigger majority.
Last week, it emerged that they had been scurrying around seeking legal advice that Corbyn’s nomination would not be automatic and he could be excluded from the ballot paper. This would fulfil the dream of these right-wing parasites to carry on as before; treating the hundreds of thousand of workers and youth who joined in order to support Corbyn with contempt, while they sit back and keep this tottering Tory government in power to carry on its wars against the people of the Middle East and war against the working class at home.
Over the weekend, Corbyn infuriated the right-wing by having the temerity to write to Labour Party members setting out his opposition to the war and bombing campaign and canvassing their views. This was seen as an act of treachery by the right-wing who have no objections to being canvassed by the Tories but who draw the line at allowing ordinary members to intervene in their cosy relationship with Cameron.
While the right-wing plot and scheme to dump Corbyn and march to war, two of Corbyn’s closest allies – Ken Livingstone and shadow chancellor John McDonnell – have opened the door for a catastrophic defeat by advocating that MPs be allowed to ‘follow their consciences’ by being given a free vote on Wednesday.
The question of voting for imperialist war is not an issue of individual conscience – it is a class issue, a matter of principle. Support for imperialist war and keeping the Tories in power is not up to individual Labour MPs. The overwhelming majority of Labour Party members who voted for Corbyn don’t want war in Syria and want to see the back of the Tories.
Corbyn has the support of the 400,000 who signed up precisely to put an end to the right-wing cabal which dominates the party; he must use this mass support to stamp down on the right-wing and demand that every Labour MP vote against Cameron’s motion. If Corbyn pulls back and allows the right-wing a free vote they will not only ensure war in Syria and Cameron’s survival but they will swiftly move against Corbyn and remove him from leadership.
Every shadow cabinet member must be instructed to vote against Cameron’s war plans or be sacked immediately. Every Labour MP must be told in no uncertain terms that if they vote with the Tories they will face de-selection as MPs and being thrown out of the party. Only by taking this firm, decisive action can Corbyn defeat the right-wing and inflict a huge blow against the Tories and their plans for another bloody imperialist war.