UK press harass Jeremy Corbyn outside his home, accuse him of helping Russians ‘attack our election’
Hours after British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab claimed that Russians tried to meddle in last year’s election, the British media were camped outside former Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn’s house, accusing him of complicity.
Raab said on Thursday he was “almost certain” that “Russian actors” disseminated leaked government documents revealing seemingly one-sided trade talks with the US last year. Corbyn – who was preparing at the time for an electoral showdown with incumbent Prime Minister Boris Johnson – held the documents up as proof that the Tory party was preparing to “sell off” Britain’s National Health Service to American corporations.Also on rt.com British FM Dominic Raab is ‘almost certain’ Russians interfered in election, but you’ll have to take his word for it
Raab’s claims about mysterious Russian meddlers were presented without evidence. Furthermore, the foreign secretary did not accuse the Russian state, or even the “Russian actors,” of actually acquiring the damning documents. Instead, he simply accused them of participating in their “online amplification.”
The British media took Raab’s words and filled in the blanks. Hours after Raab’s statement, camera crews waited outside Corbyn’s north London home to press the former Labour leader.
“Do you have anything to say about Russian disruption?” one reporter asked Corbyn as he dismounted his trademark bicycle in his front yard.
The tone quickly became more accusatory. “Are you complicit?” the reporter asked. “Did you help those who attacked our election?”
“Would you do it again, Mr Corbyn?... Do you regret your actions, Mr Corbyn?”
Corbyn offered only one word in response – “Goodbye” – before he closed his front door on the cameras.
When Corbyn first publicized the documents last year, their leaking was deemed to be the work of Russia by the Atlantic Council, a NATO-funded think tank. Despite the Atlantic Council offering no evidence to back up this claim, the mainstream media followed the narrative, with a Telegraph headline in December reading “Corbyn’s dossier ‘points to Russians.’” In reality, a link to the dossier had circulated on Reddit but gained little traction, until activists came across the link and publicized it.
Its contents were never deemed fake either, and Corbyn argued that efforts to link them with Russia were a “massive distraction from the fundamental issue” – that Johnson’s government couldn’t be trusted with the NHS.
The media scrum outside Corbyn’s house was condemned by left-wing pundits and commentators. “This isn’t journalism,”wrote the Guardian’s Owen Jones. “It’s someone heckling an opposition politician with government attack lines.”
‘Siri, why is the British media - according to polling year after year - the least trusted in Europe?’ pic.twitter.com/zoKJ0pzTIY— Aaron Bastani (@AaronBastani) July 16, 2020
and people wonder how so many now have open hatred for journalists and journalism in this country https://t.co/gjcLEaAhpu— Fabian 🏴🚩🔥 (@Fab_Newt) July 16, 2020
I presumed the pictures of Corbyn being doorstepped were from months back, but no, happening today. The man tried his best to change the country for the better. Is that really a cause for such animosity? Leave him alone.— Guy Fawkes (@blunted_james) July 16, 2020
For much of the UK media, Corbyn and Russia are two reliable enemies. The current focus on Corbyn is fortunate for the Conservative government, as a long-awaited report into alleged Russian interference in the 2016 Brexit referendum is due for publication in the coming days – and expected to be a headache for Johnson.
However, it is unlikely to provide any major bombshells of the kind Democrats were expecting from the Mueller Report into alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 US presidential election.
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