Another own goal for Rachel Riley and her impressionable friends

One would have thought a woman who is keen to take dozens of people to court for libelling her would be more circumspect about defaming someone else, but that seems not to be the case for Rachel Riley and Tracy Ann Oberman.

It seems they have swallowed a Guido Fawkes fabrication about Jeremy Corbyn hook, line and sinker.

The Fawkes blog has published a smear piece for the D-Day 75th anniversary commemorations, claiming that Mr Corbyn endorsed calls for the UK to disarm during World War II, in an article he wrote in 2003.

But it neglects to mention that Mr Corbyn was reviewing a book about the late Labour MP George Lansbury, who did indeed call for disarmament at an alarming moment in history.

So Mr Corbyn did quote extracts from George Lansbury: At the Heart of Old Labour, as he does here and as Guido quotes: “As war broke out in 1939 he wrote ‘I am also quite certain that the first great nation that declares its willingness to share the world’s resources, territories and markets and also disarms will be the safest in the world’

But he also wrote – omitted by Guido: “George lived out his years in frenetic activity for peace travelling across Europe and the United States preaching pacifism and calling for a world conference on economic justice. He controversially met both Hitler and Mussolini in this effort, to no avail. The dogs of war were already out”. That is hardly a ringing endorsement for Mr Lansbury’s approach.

The paragraph that Guido claims shows Mr Corbyn’s support for George Lansbury’s views was in fact referring to the book, not the man: “I hope Tony Blair, on his travels on behalf of George Bush, reads at least that part of this wonderful work.

It was a comment on the book – and a dig at the warmongering of the then-Labour leader, who at the time was heavily involved in military adventures in the Middle East that ended up causing nothing but more trouble.

Ms Riley failed to check the context and swallowed Guido‘s story whole:

This is a woman, let’s not forget, who is currently suing Labour officer Laura Murray for defamation over her tweet following the egg attack on Jeremy Corbyn in March, in which she endorsed the opinion “If you don’t want eggs thrown at you, don’t be a Nazi” with the words “Good advice”. She is claiming that Ms Murray’s observation that she was calling Mr Corbyn a Nazi is “an appalling distortion of the truth”, we are told.

Yet her own Twitter feed shows her supporting an appalling distortion of the truth by the Guido Fawkes blog.

And so, it seems, did Ms Oberman:

(I am led to believe that both Ms Riley and Ms Oberman have taken to deleting some of their tweets. Please let me know if the tweet by Ms Oberman (above) disappears and I’ll replace it with the screenshot I took of it. Sauce for the goose…)

Look at the number of people who have supported Ms Riley and Ms Oberman – 478 in the former case, 247 in the latter. That’s a lot of gullible people who have been taken in by a lie – because people they revere have repeated it?

Fuller details of this affair may be found on Zelo Street.

These are the people who are trying to sue me for defamation. If you think they should not be allowed to get away with it – which seems clear from this evidence alone – please visit my CrowdJustice page and contribute to my defence fund. They have wealth; I do not.

Don’t let them buy a win if you don’t think they deserve it.

Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.

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8 thoughts on “Another own goal for Rachel Riley and her impressionable friends

  1. Brian

    To me the antisemitism insults aimed at labour, especially those by the recent Tory MP’s leaders candidate are not just abhorrent, they are a thinly veiled insults, politically motivated in an attempt to gain the moral high ground. If the slanderers using these insults are not antisemitic in themselves, then what exactly is antisemitism

  2. James Fussell

    Mike – I’ve asked this before, and I’ll ask it again! Who – or what – is funding Riley and Oberman? They are, after all, D-list (if that) ‘celebrities’, not plutocrats!

    1. Mike Sivier Post author

      I don’t know. It is said that Ms Riley is worth a considerable amount of money, based on her TV appearances, but I have no way of confirming or denying this, and I have no information about Ms Oberman’s finances at all. It is possible that their solicitor is working on a pro bono or “no win, no fee” basis, but again this is speculation.

  3. Zippi

    Their claims are nonsensical, in that Mr. Corbyn’s comments were made long after the war was over and he, himself, wasn’t even born until after the war. Given this, why would he suggest, in retrospect, that we should have disarmed, without providing evidence to support the claim? It just doesn’t hold water and they should have realised this. The fact that he was reviewing a book and was talking about contemporary events is not really necessary to prove their lack of commonsense. Why would anybody argue for disarmament in a war that has long since passed? We learn from the past, one would hope, in order to secure our future; one cannot change the past! Were he around at the time and made those comments, I could seen an argument but clearly, he was not so, his comments could not have had any influence on the outcome. Have these people really nothing better to do with their time?

  4. Gary

    I’m reminded of the Kezia Dugdale case. The former Scottish Labour leader made accusations in print and on TV that Independence Blogger Stuart Campbell made “homophobic remarks” and was a “homophobe” He offered to allow her to settle with an apology, then to settle with a small payment. She refused all such offers and went to court because the Labour Party (well, a senior official) had offered to bankroll her defence. This became a bone of contention (as she had made the remarks NOT in parliament or in the course of her duties but rather in her capacity as a columnist with ‘The Daily Record’ Labour were made to rescind their help by London and the newspaper stepped in to cover costs. They need not have done as THEY were not being sued, but for ‘reasons best known to themselves’ they DID.

    Seemingly with no connection to YOUR situation, I’m mentioning this because it may be the case that A N Other who has no obvious connection or interest MAY just have decided that they would like to see your blog closed down or, at the VERY least, you discredited as an ‘anti-semite’ This has happened to people who are Jewish, remember Corbyn sharing a platform with a man described as an anti semite? The man was a Jewish holocaust survivor of the death camps – his crime was to describe the Israeli governments actions as being similar to what HE personally witnessed in 1930s Germany.

    And once you are labelled as an anti semite their is NO return. You are finished as a serious commentator on politics you are ‘fringe’ you are a ‘conspiracy theorist’

    Of course, if you WERE a conspiracy theorist it would already have crossed your mind that the 77th Brigade and PRISM were set up PRECISELY to carry out this kind of operation against journalists and others to prevent their point of view being taken seriously. If they WERE involved this is EXACTLY what and how they would have done things. But that’s just a conspiracy theory, isn’t it??

    1. Mike Sivier Post author

      If Kezia Dugdale lost her case, the newspaper would have been liable for a defamation case also, as it published her words. So I reckon that’s why it covered her costs.

      I’m not going to worry about shadowy figures who might want to shut down my site; in the first place, that’s not going to happen, and also that way leads to paranoia. Attempts to discredit me as an anti-Semite (and there have been many) have all failed; the only people putting forward that lie are those with an agenda.

      This tends to disprove your claim that anyone accused of anti-Semitism is relegated to the fringes.

      I have no idea who the 77th Brigade or PRISM may be.

  5. Jenny Hambidge

    Jeremy Corbyn wasn’t even born during the second World War. He has just turned 70 so must have been born in 1949!!

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