UK Labour’s Party Leader Under Fire for Criticism Against Bahrain

The new leader of Britain’s opposition Labour Party Jeremy Corbyn is a loser. According to one Reuters report, many in his own left-wing party say he will never win power. But he seems to believe that the one mantra to win Brownie points with the British public is to praise the recent western nuclear deal with Iran, and to hide Iran’s misdeeds, criticize Bahrain and Saudi Arabia, as he did recently while addressing his partymen at a conclave in Brighton.

Here is a man who has openly supported and met with militant representatives of Hamas and Lebanese Hezbollah groups and considers the Saudi-led war against Iranian-backed Houthi militant groups in Yemen as “an assault on Yemen.” And yet criticizes Bahrain and Saudi Arabia for “repressing their own citizens.” He seems to be a believer in the dictum that a crafty use of semantics can sometimes swing opinion. What the two governments are actually doing is “trying to contain terrorists,” to paraphrase Mr Corbyn’s uncouth observation.

A true citizen has his nation’s interests at heart. When he ceases to do that and comes under the spell of either his home-grown advisers or those based on the foreign soil [in Bahrain’s case by his handlers based in Iran] and begins to act against his country and indulges in anti-national and subversive activities, he becomes a terrorist.

Mr Corbyn should be able to better understand this if he goes back a couple of decades into his own country’s history to notice that Mrs Margaret Thatcher, former prime minister, had consistently and adamantly refused to recognize Irish Republican Army or IRA goons [who spoke the same kind of language spoken by the terrorists and goons of Bahrain] either as citizens or even political prisoners and labelled them plain terrorists. And he might like to recall that they failed to win any sympathy or recognition from the UK government despite a large number of them going on a fast unto death to achieve that; they all died fasting.

David Cameron, who recently won his second term as British Prime Minister, should know better. That’s the reason he is lending “uncritical support” to Bahrain and Saudi Arabia, which Mr Corbyn so laments sitting in the opposition. That’s the reason he had openly declared in British Parliament after UK riots of August 2011 that “we will not let any phoney concerns about human rights get in the way of … the arrest of these [culprit] individuals.”

Since the signing of the nuclear deal with Iran – a pariah state until not long ago – it has become a sort of fashion among the aspiring politicians in the west to turn a blind eye to Tehran’s misdeeds and mischiefs because for their purposes, the country has “fallen in line.” But this seems to have opened the door for Iran to more brazenly indulge in his subversive activities in its neighouring countries without the fear of a rap on its knuckles. And ill-informed politicians like Mr Corbyn seem to encourage that attitude.

It is time western politicians on the make realized that there is a clear difference between a ‘citizen’ and a ‘terrorist’ and between ‘repression’ and ‘control.’ When a gang of citizens hurts the interests of a state, when that gang takes instructions from another country inimical to their own, that state is within its rights to make sure the gang is made accountable for its actions and activities. Every country does so to protect its citizens and to maintain peace. If in the process they are tried in a court of law and punished that’s ‘justice’ not ‘repression.’

Brij Sharma
Brij Sharma is an Indian journalist and editor based in Bahrain. Brij tells us the interesting stories we don't usually hear from the middle east country.