Austin tries Mann-style attack on Williamson. Fails

‘Pathetic and thuggish’ MP Ian Austin

Right-wing Labour MP Ian Austin is already infamous among the Corbyn-supporting majority of Labour members for heckling his own leader in the Commons chamber last year, helping the Tories when they were reeling and in chaos over Brexit, as Corbyn made his statement after the publication of the Chilcot Report.

He was widely criticised for his ‘pathetic and thuggish’ behaviour:

austin thug tweet

It seems Mr Austin has not much changed his ways.

The SKWAWKBOX received reports of a confrontation between Austin and Labour front-bencher Chris Williamson at Westminster’s Portcullis House on Monday night, in which the former behaved in a way described as childish and immature, before launching into an attempted attack on Williamson for alleged antisemitic comments that he was then apparently unable to substantiate when challenged.

When contacted for comment, Williamson told the SKWAWKBOX:

I was coming back to PCH (Portcullis House) from Norman Shaw [Building] and Ian must have been in the other Shaw building as he was following across the bridge to PCH. I ignored him and he ignored me, but we arrived more or less together.

I held the door open for him like I would for anyone but he refused to go through and just stood there. It was like it was a battle of wills or something, but eventually he went through. I said ‘After you, comrade’ – but he insisted he was no comrade of mine. I told him we were both members of the Labour Party so we were comrades regardless.

Then he got into all this nonsense about antisemitism and accused me of antisemitic remarks. I told him I’ve never made any and challenged him to show me what I’ve ever said that’s antisemitic.

His retort was ‘You think you’re so virtuous, don’t you?’! He kept going on about Ken Livingstone, but he couldn’t manage the same kind of attack that John Mann made on Ken and he didn’t have the cameras there.

It’s a witch-hunt at the moment – like Salem or McCarthyism: if you accuse someone that’s enough to convict them and if you fight the accusation that just proves you’re guilty. There’ll be ducking stools next.

Ian’s behaviour was childish, frankly – unacceptable in anyone, let alone an MP

Williamson has been the target of criticism from some Jewish groups for his statement concerning ‘weaponisation’ of antisemitism accusations for political purposes. However, a Jewish Voice for Labour (JVL) spokesman dismissed the idea that there was anything antisemitic in Williamson’s statement, saying:

As Jews, many of us are old enough to have personally learnt from our parents of the horrors befallen by family members in the holocaust. We are acutely aware of the path to which antisemitism can lead. Antisemitism carries a history of such depth of human depravity that any exploitation of this reference for other political objectives would be breathtakingly cynical and ruthless.

Yet this is precisely the strategy adopted by the right wing in the Labour Party, which has seen fit to weaponise accusations of antisemitism for political purposes – with one action they can simultaneously take out members of the Left and silence critics of Israel’s violation of Palestinian human rights.

It is a brave person indeed who calls out this calumny. Such is Shadow Cabinet member Chris Williamson. And of course the sky has fallen on him: firstly in the person of the Vice President of the Board of deputies of British Jews and then, seemingly seizing the opportunity to establish his credentials, by Ian Austin, one time PPS to Gordon Brown. Expect the pack to be lining up.

However, some light: there is now a new Jewish group in the Labour Party, JVL, with an entirely different agenda: opposed to attempts to widen the definition of antisemitism beyond its meaning of hostility towards or discrimination against Jews as Jews, our political priorities are universal human rights and dignity, justice for all, freedom of expression, and democracy in the Labour Party. Our launch is at the Labour Party Conference – look out for us.

The SKWAWKBOX contacted Ian Austin for comment. He declined to comment except to say:

It was a private conversation that no one heard but me and him and I don’t know why he’d tell you about it.

The SKWAWKBOX does not comment on its sources.

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  1. Maybe Chris Williamson told other people who then told you.

    If someone falsely accused me of anti-Semitism I imagine I would have something to say about it to friends and family at least.

  2. For far too long, the Labour Party has been in thrall to the Zionists within who represent only one strand of Jewish opinion. Jews who reject Zionism have either been ignored or vilified. There is now growing anger that their voice should be heard and not silenced for fear of upsetting Zionists who have used bullying and intimidation to get their way and as we know bullies should never be placated.

    The attacks on Chris Williamson are typical of the smears now being fabricated in the hope that they will reflect upon Jeremy Corbyn, a strong supporter of the Palestinians. Such attacks are escalating as Corbyn gets closer to becoming PM.

    Miko Peled world renowned Jewish Israeli peace campaigner and Palestinian supporter will be traveling over from the USA to speak at a number of events during the Labour Party Conference. His lecture ‘More Than One Voice’ will take place on Sunday 24th Sept in the Old Ship Inn, 7pm to 9pm. and at the Mercure Brighton Hotel on Monday 25th Sept., where the start time has changed to 8.30pm. He will explain the alternative view to Zionism and how Zionism is being used to scupper peace in the Middle East and undermine those who object to its illegal colonial activities by fabricating charges of antisemitism against them.

    1. Indeed. It cannot be long before the playground bullies trot out that other standard accusation against the new group as being “self hating People.” As with other organisational structures, the Labour Party itself at present being only one of many in different sectors, there is no toleration of diversity. Simply a child like attempt to stifle other voices and monopolise what is and is not considered “legitimate.”

  3. Ian Austin is one of the few Labour MPs who needs to start realising where his bread is buttered and stop fighting against people in his own Party, if he can’t he should retire. The Labour Party is becoming more united now…we don’t need his type.

  4. It really is beyond irony when an apartheid apologist like Ian Austin accuses an honourable member of parliament and anti-racist like Chris Williamson of racism.

  5. Careful.
    That was probably a rehearsal.
    He’ll probably pick on someone else next time.

    I love how these anti-Labour MPs are getting increasingly desperate, but I also worry that Palestinians will suffer the consequences.

      1. Not if the winner is detrimental to Labour and our chances of presenting a united Party to the electorate. There are some ‘Labour’ people who would rather have a Tory Government than one led by Jeremy Corbyn!

  6. Like so many falsely accused and effectively having to prove their innocence! Chris is being attacked for being against racism in ALL its forms.

    I stand with Chris, and with other comrades falsely accused and under suspension during this McCarthy-esque witchhunt

  7. Did you see this vid (a little off topic I know). Please circulate as far and wide as possible. Thanks


  8. Isn’t Austin quite thirsty?
    I also heard on impeccable authority that he’s a long-time admirer of Gideon. Bezzies.

  9. The Labour Party has acquired some truly awful people over the years – Gapes, Ryan, Woodcock, Austin, Hoey and many more. Tragic.

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