Labour leader Keir Starmer tried to pay homage to those who died, on the 34th anniversary of the Hillsborough disaster – but succeeded only in highlighting his own hypocrisy.
Critics of the hard-right-wing Labour leader have spoken up to remind us that Starmer has written articles in The Sun – the (right-wing) news-rag that falsely accused Liverpool fans at the Hillsborough stadium on April 15, 1989.
The Hillsborough Disaster was a fatal human crush at an FA Cup semi-final between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest, hosted at Sheffield Wednesday’s Hillsborough Stadium on April 15, 1989.
The police service attempted to hide the fact that its failures caused 96 deaths and 766 injuries – the worst disaster in UK sporting history – by trying to blame it on the fans who were injured and died, saying those people caused the tragedy by being drunk and misbehaving.
West Midlands was the force appointed to investigate the disaster, but has since been accused of malpractices and failures that have been subject to a long-running investigation by the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC).
Not only that, though: the prime minister of the day, the Conservative Margaret Thatcher, refused to release information that made the police look bad.
And The Sun, a newspaper published by Rupert Murdoch’s News International, published a story headlined The Truth that was nothing but a pack of lies, supporting the fantasy created by the police.
This Site published the facts more than a decade ago.
Starmer himself spoke up about the hurt caused to the people of Liverpool by The Sun when he was campaigning for election as Labour leader in 2020. He said he would not be giving interviews to the paper during his campaign.
Sadly, as soon as he had been elected, that promise ended and he has written for The Sun since, an act that people in Liverpool consider a bitter insult:
"This city has been wounded by the media, the Sun, in this city, a hurt for this city. And I certainly won't be giving any interviews to the Sun during the course of this campaign."
— Saul Staniforth (@SaulStaniforth) April 15, 2023
— Howard Beckett (@BeckettUnite) April 15, 2023
Starmer seems to be trying to play on both sides of the Hillsborough argument – claiming to sympathise with the families of the dead and survivors of the disaster while writing for the rag that lied about them.
But memories are long in Liverpool.
Let us hope he finds that out in the local elections next month – and in the general election next year if he stubbornly refuses to learn his lesson.
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