Corbyn hits back: Ex-leader unleashes fury after Starmer attack – 'Lets get it straight!'

The Islington North MP defended the record of the Stop the War coalition he helped set up after it was singled out for criticism by the Labour leader. He accused the media and Westminster Establishment of being too eager for war rather than finding a diplomatic solution.

Sir Keir had yesterday accused the Stop the War Coalition of siding with Britain’s enemies as he looked to position himself as strong on defence policy.

He attacked the group, which Mr Corbyn is now vice-president of, for giving the impression of “naivety and weakness” to Russia.

The Labour leader vowed to stand up for Ukraine in the face of aggression from Moscow and hit out at Stop the War for failing to back Nato.

“To condemn Nato is to condemn the guarantee of democracy and security it brings, and which our allies in eastern and central Europe are relying on, as the sabre-rattling from Moscow grows ever louder,” he wrote in The Guardian.

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“That’s why the likes of the Stop the War coalition are not benign voices for peace.

“At best they are naive; at worst they actively give succour to authoritarian leaders who directly threaten democracies.”

He added: “Moscow’s hard-line leadership won’t see a rally on the streets of Britain as a reason to pull its tanks from Ukraine’s borders.

“All it will see is naivety and weakness – virtue signallers in the west providing a smokescreen so it can go on beating up and jailing those brave individuals who dare to stand up to its despotism on the streets of Russia.”

Hitting back, Mr Corbyn called the remarks “unfair”.

Addressing a meeting of the Stop the War Coalition at an event titled “No War in Ukraine — Stop Nato Expansion”, he said: “There have been some very – how should I put it – unfair remarks made today about the Stop the War coalition.

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“Let’s just get the record straight, Stop the War coalition was founded in 2001 after the attack on the World Trade Centre.

“We condemned the attack on the World Trade Centre but we said an invasion of Afghanistan and the occupation of Afghanistan is not the solution.

“And 20 years later British troops have finally left Afghanistan with all the thousands dead and the terrible plight of the hunger of the people of Afghanistan at the present time.”

After the event, Stop the War sent an email to members with the subject line: “Keir Starmer: A Warmonger in Waiting”.

The message, seen by, said: “Starmer’s ‘unshakable’ commitment to NATO has the potential to drag Britain into future unwanted conflicts which, if the past 20 years is anything to go by, will be an absolute disaster.”

They added: “Our record in opposing wars has been proved right, while Blairite warmongering now espoused by Starmer has been proved wrong.”

Russia has massed more than 100,000 troops near Ukraine, with fears it is preparing an invasion.

Several Western countries launched diplomatic pushes this week to persuade Russia to back down.

Moscow has brushed off the efforts, yielding no concessions to French President Emmanuel Macron who visited on Monday and openly mocking British Foreign Secretary Liz Truss during a visit on Thursday.

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