Former Labour MP Martin Linton is hoping to stage a political comeback at the local elections in nine days. Having lost his Commons seat in 2010, Linton is now running as a councillor candidate in the Lavender ward of Wandsworth. A triumphant return after 12 years in the wilderness…
Just weeks before he crashed out of the Commons back then, however, Linton spoke at a meeting organised by ‘Friends of Al-Aqsa’ to discuss Israeli house demolitions. Here’s what Linton had to say as a sitting Labour MP:
“There are long tentacles of Israel in this country who are funding election campaigns and putting money into the British political system for their own ends… when you make decisions about how you vote and how you advise constituents to vote, you must make them aware of the attempt by Israelis and by pro-Israelis to influence the election.”
Linton was forced to apologise, although he still caveated the mea culpa by insisting he was ‘not aware’ of the antisemitic connotations of the image of the Jewish octopus. A mystery why he lost.
Now he’s back with a Labour rosette on his lapel, despite Starmer claiming he had “closed the door on antisemitism” in the party after Corbyn’s leadership. The “long tentacles of Israel” funding election campaigns isn’t exactly subtle – it’s one of the oldest tropes in the book to suggest Jews control the media and politics. Labour were forced to claim his views don’t represent the party back in 2010. What does Sir Keir think now?