Analysis comment Exclusive

Mason slammed for attacking Corbyn over Russia when he backed same stance in 2018 – and has facts wrong now

Former left writer claims Corbyn refused to ‘apportion blame’ to Russia for Salisbury attack – but Corbyn has done precisely that and Mason backed Corbyn’s insistence on evidence in 2018

Paul Mason’s recent devotion to NATO and Ukraine has seen the formerly left-wing writer launch attacks on Jeremy Corbyn and the Stop the War (StW) movement of which Corbyn remains a deputy president – claiming, for example, that a recent Corbyn article on Russia’s invasion of Ukraine was ‘a catalogue of platitudes designed to mislead people about StW’ and accusing Corbyn of ‘disingenuously defending’ Russia. Mason claimed that the start of this ‘going to shit’ was Corbyn’s team encouraging Corbyn’s supposed reticence to condemn Russia over the Salisbury poisonings.

But Mason was pulled up on his comments when Evolve Politics pointed out that at the time, Mason had ‘fully support[ed] Corbyn’s demand for an evidence-based approach to the Salisbury attack – even going so far as to say that if previous leaders had mirrored Corbyn’s approach, it would have discouraged Russia from such attacks:

The reminder led to Mason being attacked as a ‘grifter’ in whose head Corbyn ‘lives rent free’, as the saying goes:

And in fact, Corbyn has not only since said that the evidence pointed to Russia for the Salisbury poisonings but – while the Tories took millions in donations from Russians and the current Labour leader accepted donations from people who made fortunes in Russia and Keir Starmer also continues to surround himself with close advisers mired in Russian links and himself texted congratulations to an oligarch on becoming a peer – Corbyn has stood out as one of the few parliamentarians to point out Vladimir Putin’s many wrongs, as Twitter user @COYSPeter pointed out last week:

The tweets that led to the revelation of Mason’s original support were in response to journalist Owen Jones, with Jones – not exactly known for staunchly defending Corbyn – eventually becoming so exasperated that he asked Mason ‘what have you become?’

Skwawkbox contacted Paul Mason to invite him to comment on the ‘grifter’ accusation and his 2018 support for Corbyn’s position. Mason responded that:

I tried to back him up on the line of questioning but Seumas [Milne’s] briefings were out of order and in the end it was impossible to defend his refusal to apportion blame – I also went on TV and said “he’s asking the right questions” – when May confirmed it was RU we should have accepted that – Murray and Milne are self critical about their refusal to believe it could be Russia

Emphasis added

However, when asked what ‘refusal to apportion blame’ he meant, in view of Corbyn’s status as one of the few UK politicians to call out Putin rather than ‘get into bed’ with him and his allies, Mr Mason did not respond.

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  1. If there was a massacre in Bucha it was not carried out by Russians. The victims were all wearing white armbands the Russians gave to ordinary citizens uninvolved in the fighting. Almost certainly the fascists killed them, which is why the bodies were only found two days after the Russians left.
    As to the Skripals in Salisbury does anyone still believe that the Russians were responsible? Most of the world knows otherwise.
    Mason, supporting NATO and the fascists in Ukraine attacking Corbyn, whose supporters claim to be every bit as deranged as the media and Mason and MI6, pretty well tells us all we need to know about what happened to the radical heritage the working class inherited from past generations.
    It is sickening to see ‘socialists’ squabbling over who is closer to the Imperial bosses and who sounds more like the Sun or the BBC.

    1. Does Owen support the Ukies? Does he think that the nazis consist of one battalion? He should visit and maybe even join up. That way he could kill Russians and pursue his +agenda. Now that will be something to see. Mason could teach the Ukie sailors and airmen to dance some working-class Northern Soul after all those sailors and airmen have sod all to do but wait. Come on Banderites let’s dance. Oh, I forgot, they’re doing the backwards shuffle. Do people still consider Jones and Mason left? Strasserite perhaps?

      1. Joe Robson
        You stick with your Nazis
        We will stick with the carnage and destruction inflicted by the kleptocracy, we know who has the money we know where they got it from, the only thing we dont know is who they have on the payroll
        The Labour party and Temporary Embarrassment are but chicken feed, same with your man Trump and his mini me

      1. No, Joe. The Ukrainians involved in the US backed coup of 2014, invaded the eastern regions which had refused to recognise the coup government, and called for elections. The inhabitants of the east are mainly Russian speakers- Russian is the basic language of Ukraine, though a minority, mainly in Galicia, part of the Hapsburg Empire, then Poland speak a dialect called Ukrainian ( a bit like Scots vs English). The language of the Russian speakers was banned by the coup government- this is reflected in the way that fascist thugs roam the streets of Donbas and beat up people who cannot pronounce words the Ukrainian way.
        At any rate, the re-integration of the e3ast into Ukraine, without violence, was arranged in Minsk. The Ukrainian government in Kiev and the two breakaway governments in the east agreed to Accords. However the Kiev regime has refused to implement them and instead determined to impose its rule on the east.
        That was the origin of the Feb 17th increase in shelling and mortar attacks on the east, and the movement of 80,000 troops plus equipment artillery etc in readiness for a major attack on the east.
        Russia to its credit, after years trying to resolve the disputes peacefully, refused to allow this attack, which it called genocidal and was at least ethnic cleansing involving millions of those whom the fascists call moskals (subhuman vermin according to the nationalists). Hence the current military operation of which every Russian has reason to feel proud. And of which NATO should be ashamed because there is increasing evidence that the Ukrainian forces are, in fact, controlled, down to NCO level, by soldiers from NATO, which has also provided arms, munitions and intelligence for the Ukrainian campaign.
        The Russians are being extremely careful, they are making every effort to avoid civilian casualties. There have been no ‘shock and awe’ attacks on infrastructure, roads or utilities. What attacks there have been have been limited, justifiable and will stand up to unbiased scrutiny after the war.
        All the massacres, war crimes, killing of POWs and use of civilians as human shields-including the phoney attacks on the maternity hospital, the kindergarten and the railway station have been carried out by Ukrainian forces commanded by open fascists and, shamefully, their NATO enablers and trainers.
        What is happening in Ukraine, and has been since 1991 is that the US is trying to turn it into an anti-Russian bastion. Among the means it has employed has been the wholesale revival of Nazism, which includes the revision of history in which World War II featured Russian aggression, fought off by Ukrainian heroes allied with Hitler. The UK too, has assisted in this travesty.
        Every family that was involved in the War, everyone who has ever worn a poppy should be protesting at the way in which The Establishment, reverting to its true nature, has embraced Ukrainian fascism and worked to kill Russians.

      2. [The Russians are being extremely careful, they are making every effort to avoid civilian casualties. There have been no ‘shock and awe’ attacks on infrastructure, roads or utilities. What attacks there have been have been limited, justifiable and will stand up to unbiased scrutiny after the war.
        All the massacres, war crimes, killing of POWs and use of civilians as human shields-including the phoney attacks on the maternity hospital, the kindergarten and the railway station have been carried out by Ukrainian forces commanded by open fascists and, shamefully, their NATO enablers and trainers.]

        I’m pleased the Russians are being very careful. It must have been those UKrainians in Grozny and Aleppo, they seem to get everywhere. They also ssem to be duping Ukrainian women into beliving that they’re Russians, before raping them… and killing their husbands, and nicking stuff which has been traced back to Russia. Maybe the UKrainians are just sending loads of stuff to show the world they’re not all that bad.

        Meanwhile in the real world …………………

      3. POWs of Ukrainian Origin, with white armbands, tied in Ukrainian Nazi execution fashion in different stages of decomposition, dragged out to one street of a small village just outside Bucha and all placed in proximity of Mortar/Missile pocket holes, none with the wounds expected, or shrapnel/explosion soot/fire damage to their clothes, at that proximity to a Mortar/Missile Explosion!? The same Mortars/Missiles that exploded tanks so heavily that their top and gun evaporated and caused overnight rust so heavy that the tanks are disintegrating and the same Mortars/Missiles that did all that damage to those tanks caused nothing more than crash or vandalism damage to the public cars, but no major structure damage and that weird, fall to bits, overnight rust! The same Mortars/Missiles that burnt out trees in some photos and not burnt out in others, the burnt out tree, by rocket explosion, that chops trees after the fire goes out!? That is a one hell of a scary Arsenal! I wonder why the Russians used such dangerous weapons in the same ‘one and only’ street ‘where they shat in the beds that they slept in and strewn the tiny abode with the contents of someone’s rubbish bags’
        POWs of Ukrainian Origin, who’s bodies, packed by a white van man who drags the bodies about, and packs them to the top of the fan and leaving the doors wide open as an added extra bonus for the corrupt Western MSM!?
        POWs of Ukrainian Origin Dumped by the same White Van Man into a Mass Grave like Rubbish at the Tip!? Have you studied the Pictures of those Mass Graves!? Do!
        POWs of Ukrainian Origin who were not so much as identified, let alone a Forensic Autopsy, despite there being 14 Funeral Homes, 11 Morgues and 30 Universities on the East Side of The River in Kiev, gets dumped like trash!?
        But I guess that is all ‘Normal Behaviour’ towards our own countrymen and women, even if they were of Russian Ethnicity or Russian Friendly/Neutral and still suffered so tremendously at the hands of the Nazi Hunter Russians!
        Meanwhile, in the real world…………..we have our heads buried deep in the Sahara of MSM ignorant bliss! Next, you’ll suggest people vote Labour because the name says Labour!

      4. Would the money you would have me follow be that of the world’s richest man, with an enormous palace for himself, another for his first wife and both daughters, with superyachts the size of a P&O ferry, with another superyacht to act as a tender, in case of overspill of guests? I see what you mean. Folks following that money appear to be doing a copy and paste don here striaght from the Kremlin website. If I want to read what Putin is saying, I can go direct to his website ta, not get it second hand off this website’s commenters. Let me be clear, if I had an NLAW and a random squad of Russians came up my road in a T.72 with the intention of taking my country from me, I’d be the first in line to pull the trigger at the rickety thing. I assume you’d rush out to meet them with chocs and flowers?

      5. I have never been on the Kremlin Website, interesting that you have not challenged any of my observation, but are happy to blissfully aware continue sticking your head in the sands of MSM ignorance when presented with proof that you can’t deny!
        I don’t care for Putin, I care for truth and facts, we all have our own opinions, make our own observations, however you, my dear Joe, stopped observing and forming your own opinions because you are fed and blinded by MSM!
        Anyway, those are my own observations, but feel free to refute me with your own observations! About your Comment of ‘the first to pull the trigger’, yes I am sure most of us would if we were frightened Ukrainian Citizens whose Government handed out weapons willy-nilly, but what if we were Ethnic Russian Ukrainian Citizens, who are hunted down by Ukrainian Nazi Battalions? I am sure we would be running out with Chocolates and Roses?

  2. ITs become increasingly clear that Corbyn was a “Lone voice crying in the wilderness” inside the Labour party and not just the PLP .The option for a new party is still there but for how much longer when many like me have moved on to another party outside of Parliament and the British establishment.Corbyn didn’t expect to be leader but he never had a chance with so many of his friends backstabbers.

    1. The only way for a left-leaning party is for a new left party. One that forbids membership to Blairites and PLP. There’s still time for the 2024 election – but not much. Starmer has finished the Labour Party for good. Leave it to die.

  3. I’d love to know what – or who – turned Paul Mason’s left-wing brain to mush. I get the feeling there’s another – more interesting – story, behind this story.

    From ‘left-wing firebrand’, too Blairite/Starmerite lickspittle. That’s a long road to travel, in a couple of, relatively, short years.

    1. Reply to George Pell
      Paul Mason was a fair weather friend of Jeremy Corbyn and socialism. He always has his eye on the main chance. If we had won the election in 2019 he would still have been shouting his support for Jeremy from the rooftops. We lost so he turned on Jeremy and is supporting Starmer ( for now).

    2. He’s probably been knobbled by filthy lucre, like almost every other pundit and politician it seems. Depressing much!

    3. ”I’d love to know what’

      methinks its an age crisis, downhill with screams, sour and resentful. a common condition of pundits and shallow paddlers – professors tend to survive longer but take much longer to quip up at the rattle of a can.

  4. Can we focus on Mason, now a Labour right-winger? How did he get there? He must know how disingenuous Starmer has been over the People’s Vote, anti-semitism in the LP, nationalization of utilities, and Kashmir to list only a few. And there will be more to come.

    Looking back, his radicalism (such as it was) was never firmly rooted. How else would he have been such a prominent journalist at the BBC and C4?

  5. All there is to say about Mason is that he is a Twunt, so are Jones and the entire fake ‘left’ for means and accounts! Vile slimy little things, just like BlueKeef and the Starmerstruppen, The Uriah Heeps of Politics, Journalism and Law!

  6. I don’t know if he’s successed yet, but Mason seems desperate to gain access to Starmers inner circle. Hence the reasons why he appears to spend his time denigrating Corbyn.

    1. You have to give Starmer’s advisors some credit. Even they can see that Mason is an absolute chump. His failure to remember that he publically support Corbyn in March 2018 on the Skirpal issue won’t even elevate him to the position of being regarded by them as a potential “useful idiot” when he’s so adequately demonstarted to us all that he’s just an idiot.

  7. Money talks and you dont work unless you toe the line
    The worst invention ever was the Mortgage
    It killed the drinking culture and murdered the working class

    1. …Doug Well just look at the message doug…. “Mort” age “tied up to the death” but now thats not good enough they need your digital map and a vaccine for life along with draconian measures to make sure you are a modern day slave.Welcome to the unelected new world order….wars and poverty at the press of a button.

  8. Anyone interested in a signed copy of Mason’s book Postcapitalism? He wrote the message “In Our Lifetime” in mine!

  9. Paul Mason must accept the Biden/NATO line that any accusations of Ukrainian Fascism are self-dellusional and the result of Russian propaganda. This is pure BBC/synchronised-MSM-speak!

    How to Stop Fascism: History, Ideology, Resistance by Paul Mason

    He obviously no-longer holds the view that “Political movements of far-right extremism, right-wing populism and authoritarian conservatism, though different in their organisational aspects and language, share philosophical roots with fascism.”

    Fascism is back Paul. Can you not see it?

    1. “Fascism is back Paul. Can you not see it?”

      Quite correct – in Ukraine and Hungary and Russia
      and many other places .. and none more so than in
      the latter place – hence the reluctance of the Hungarians
      to criticise them.

      The Fascist standard is carried in Russia by the “Wagner Group”

      I do admire their logo – which epitomises their raison d’être ..

      This lovely lot are blamed for the atrocities inflicted on
      Ukrainians and much else. They are also pals with American
      Supremacists – awarding them one of their badges.

      1. You know the saying about the first casualty of war being truth? Well, apparently, it doesn’t exist (wagner group, not truth) – a bit the same way that the CIA doesn’t do stuff either?

  10. Owen Jones attacking Paul Mason is essentially one grifter attacking another grifter in order to gain their territory as well as vitrue signal. Wouldn’t trust him just because of this. Ever. He will accuse you of AS and encourage mob rule at any point.

  11. I am not at all convinced that the narrative we have been given about Salisbury is true.

    Unfortunately, Corbyn found himself abandoned by his senior colleagues and felt it expedient to fall in with that narrative however implausible it was.

    Presenting evidence to the accused, as Corbyn advocated, is normal investigative procedure. There is no evidence that the British government actually did this.

    The pattern of behaviour is very similar to the attacks on Russia regarding the INF treaty:

    1. “Abandoned by his senior colleagues”. I see no evidence of that Tony. In fact, re Mason, he’s complaining that Milne and co. didn’t “abandon” Jeremy Corbyn on Skirpal (and encouraged his now-supposed “error”. No?

      1. Parliamentary colleagues.

        According to the book ‘Left Out’ only Chris Williamson supported him.

  12. I’m not sure when Mason was ever ‘left.’ He has been a NATO shill since before the attack on Libya and in February 2019 he tied it all together, writing about PV ‘Leave is Putin’s plan for Britain: it harms our national security and weakens NATO…

  13. In fact Corbyn insisted that OPCW should be asked to
    conduct a full investigation on Russian involvement.
    In order for this to happen the Russians had to be
    provided with available evidence viz sample of poison.
    (See OPCW Charter – Annexe on Verification.)

    Their previous involvement was only in respect of
    chemical analysis of poison(s)
    (1) in June 2018 to identify the poison in respect of
    the first victims –
    (2) In September 2018 to verify that the poison involved
    in the attack on the second victims is the same as that
    of (1)

    There was no mention of Russia in either of “Terms of
    Reference” of either.

    What Corbyn wanted would have led – eventually to
    the Hazmat boots of OPCW inspectors treading
    all over the silk carpets of the Kremlin. Am sure the
    Russians would not have liked it – oh dear .. but that’s
    what happens when you call it experts ..

    Paul Mason – along with his cronies – is a
    scientific ignoramus..

    and then there are the Tories – mired in the filthy lucre
    of the Russian oligarchs …

  14. It’s still impossible to actually discuss Salisbury because of the D Notices that ban open discussion. Comments immediately disappear. The case is riddled with doubt. Are theRussian father and daughter still alive? In custody? Have they an opinion about what happened? We will be the last to know.

    1. The Russian father and daughter have likely taken
      on new identities – and who can blame them?

      I think there is a lot still to be found out about the attack
      – but maybe it would have been quicker if they had
      involved OPCW as Corbyn wanted. They are the experts
      so why not leave it to them?

      The way the government behaved is an insult to those
      who were attacked and most particularly to the three
      Britishers – the policeman and the couple, one of whom
      died of course.

      1. It would appear that the UK had a valuable “Russian asset” living in Salisbury, and placed him in a house, with absolutely no CCTV covering it, nor with an overview of it by MI5. There are countless houses with their own CCTV systems (mine include for the last 10 years!) but apparently the UK state didn’t consider this for someone of significant value and at significant risk. And if you can believe that then the UK is governed more abysmally than anyone has ever realised!

      2. No wonder the Govt has slapped D Notices on the Salisbury case; they can’t risk the case being explored. An old man got Putin’s permission to return to Russia to see his mother before she died. His daughter no doubt brought a passport and two Russians were assigned to escort him home. But the British secret services weren’t having it knowing he’d be interrogated about his work with them, especially for the ‘urination’ report designed to fell Trump. The rest is history.

      3. Father and daughter closed their phones by removing the batteries for 4 hours on the morning of the attack, perhaps meeting his MI6 Handler? He was furious over lunch but nobody says why but it’s likely he’d been refused permission to leave the UK. It wasn’t the ‘deadly’ nerve agent used but something to incapacitate them, get them into hospital and run the bogus account of attempted assassination. Unfortunately it meant they couldn’t risk letting them speak or to put their side of the story – they might have told the truth!! Best to shut them up for ever!

      4. Holby central more likely theyve gone diving with a concrete overcoat.Nobody just dissapears unless they have a fortune at their disposal and the training and contacts to avoid border controls and produce the documents and eye scans.Even a absolute novice would understand that British intelligence has been involved from the beginning..

      5. They decided they couldn’t let him go and risk the double agent telling the Russians about Chris Steele which would have harmed UK -US relations. The solution was a bodged job that left the father and daughter in no man’s land perhaps for the rest of their life and meant there had to be full on censorship. Is his mum still alive?

      6. “They are the experts so why not leave it to them?”
        Because as Syria showed the experts are over ruled by the imperialist agents who are their bosses.

      7. If Robert Fisk was still alive I’m sure we’d know more about the tricks that are being played by the fascists. He would have gone there to see for himself.

  15. Does Parliament ever have a say about D Notices? Are they limited in time or is it possible for them to be for ever? Are they ‘democratic’ or just crude censorship?

  16. And on a happier note its looking like Sinn Fein are odds on for a Historic win to take control of stormont in the coming election and make Michelle ONeil the first minister of northern Ireland.And the fact of a democratic socialist government in Ulster will be a cause for sheer panick in Britain.especially amongst the conservative and unionist labour party….That should keep the lights burning in drowning street.and “the Lottos bunker”

    1. Joseph
      How do you feel about Sinn Fein holding power in the North and South, is that a half way house that you could live with

  17. Hard to tell which gobshite I intensely dislike more, mason or jones.

    Mason can’t decide what the bleedin’ he’ll he’s thinking from one minute to the next and jones is a bellend, full stop.

  18. Paul – Skripal’s mum died of Covid in January 2021. The authorities in (I think) Moscow informed the British Embassy and were told that the Skripal’s would be informed. It was left for a couple of days to allow them to be informed, and then the UK media (the Daily Mail, for some reason) was informed. They printed the story. The Russian authorities said that the family did not subsequently receive messages of condolence from either Sergei or Yulia Skripal.

    1. Thanks goldbach. Do you know what happened to Julia’s fiancée? She was planning to start a family in a Moscow apartment they were buying.

      1. With regards to understanding Ukraine, thanks for a very pertinent link Harry. Meanwhile, for those who still may not find the time to read this acutely relevant material, there’s always this very concise offering from Congressman Adam Schiff:

        “We support the Ukrainian people because we can fight the Russians over there and we don’t have to fight them over here…” (!)

        With regards, also, to Bevin’s sharp comment about experts versus their imperial agents, here’s a link to an intelligence based account from Jacques Baud, who has served NATO (as well as the USSR and the UN). It makes well informed, evidence based comment: on the nature and make up of the Ukraine military, on the implications of haphazardly arming civilians and on what finally led Putin and the Duma to undertake military action.

  19. Paul – Re: Christopher Steele
    It wasn’t only Steele (the handler) who lived a few minutes from Skripal’s house, Pablo Millar the spook who recruited Skripal also lived a few minutes away. The two had become good friends in the army before joining the intelligence services. There was a third friend who went into journalism. He was writing a book and had consulted Skripal about it on, I think, four occasions in the month prior to the attack. The book was never published and he declined to say what it was to be about. The name? Mark Urban.

      1. Subtitled ‘Putin’s Poison’ doesn’t raise confidence!

  20. And No goldbach, it was NOT the month before the ‘attack’, as you describe it, and Mark Urban started interviewing Skripal the year before, and obviously changed the theme of the book after what (allegedly) happened in Salisbury.

    So that’s TWO things you’ve managed to get COMPLETELY wrong! How is that possible???

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