LEN McCLUSKEY, general secretary of the Unite union, said that Labour Party leader Keir Starmer faces being ‘dumped into the dustbin of history’ in an interview with Times Radio on Sunday.
McCluskey lamented that under Starmer, voters ‘don’t understand’ what Labour stands for anymore and that the Labour leader needed to ‘shake off the siren voices of New Labour’ if it was to stand a chance of defeating the Tories.
He said: ‘There is a real fear at the moment that he is attempting to marginalise the left. Now we seem to be travelling in a direction that is turning the Labour Party into a party of the establishment. That will not get you into No 10.’ Starmer hopes it will, however, get him into a national government with the Tories.
McCluskey went on that Starmer was on course to ‘destroy the unity of the party’, saying that: ‘If he continues to attack the democracy in the left of the party, he’ll destroy the unity of the party and the reality will be he’ll be dumped into the dustbin of history.’
Speaking about the upcoming Hartlepool by-election where a right-wing candidate has been imposed on the local Labour Party, McCluskey said: ‘If that’s Keir’s definition of democracy, well it’s certainly not mine. It’s not even a pretence any more.’
Since he became Labour leader, Starmer has conducted a witch-hunt against his predecessor Jeremy Corbyn and mounted a campaign to purge the party of Corbyn supporters. Corbyn was suspended from the party on trumped up charges of anti-Semitism and even after his reinstatement, Starmer decreed that Corbyn could no longer sit as a Labour MP.
An internal memo was sent out to Constituency Labour Parties (CLPs) that forbade any discussion of issues about Corbyn with a countless number of members and even entire CLPs being suspended for voicing criticism of Corbyn’s treatment.
At the same time as purging the Labour Party of any remaining vestiges of socialism, Starmer has given full support to the Tories.
On every bill presented by the Tories aimed at strengthening the powers of the state – powers that will be used against the working class and the unions – Starmer has instructed Labour MPs to abstain. The Police and Crime Bill was only opposed after the attack on the Clapham Vigil for Sarah Everard.
He ordered abstentions on the Overseas Operations Bill that granted immunity from prosecution to British forces for war crimes and sacked three Labour MPs from the frontbench for defying him and voting against decriminalising torture and murder.
Similarly, he issued a three-line whip to abstain on the Covert Human Intelligence Sources Bill that made undercover cops above the law and granted a ‘licence to kill’ for the security services.
On Sunday, McCluskey repeated his claim that workers were not sure what Labour stands for while in fact workers are becoming very much aware that the Labour Party stands for only one thing and that is complete support for every single Tory policy.
Last October, McCluskey and the Unite executive cut the union’s funding of the Labour Party by £700,000 following months of warnings to Starmer that union support must not be ‘taken for granted’.
This decision had not deterred Starmer and the Labour right wing from their determined drive to assure the capitalist class that they are fully committed to saving British capitalism at the expense of the working class.
Their only aim is to prove they are worthy of becoming a junior partner in a national government with the Tories to confront a working class revolutionised by mass unemployment and the super austerity that Tories intend to inflict to save bankrupt British capitalism.
McCluskey has been forced by the movement of the working class to make this further warning to Starmer but the time has come to start carrying them out in action.
This means workers demanding that the unions completely break with the Labour Party and go forward to building the Workers Revolutionary Party that will organise to bring down the Tories, seizing power and going forward to a workers government and socialism – consigning not just Starmer but the entire capitalist system to the dustbin of history