Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Tariq Ali gives the game away

RESPECT were furious at a recent article written by leading anti-war activist Tariq Ali which said that a vote for their party was a wasted vote. The veteran radical suggested voting instead for the Liberal Democrats in most places.

Although Tariq Ali is still backing his pal George Galloway in Bethnal Green and Bow his call for a Lib Dem vote everywhere else has left Galloway in a tricky position. Everyone knows that of all the RESPECT candidates only George has a chance of actually winning a seat but it is not done to admit that in public.

So an embarassed Galloway rushed off a letter to the Guardian trying to put Tariq Ali right.

In fact Ali had given the game away. RESPECT will put all their energies into Galloway's campaign at the expense of almost all their other candidates.

It remains to be seen how other RESPECT candidates react to this development which adds to suspicions that they are being taken for a ride and that the election campaign is about little more than allowing Galloway to hang on to a seat in parliament.

After all, the great leader, says he can't operate on less than £150,000. What would happen to that holiday home in Portugal without his salary as an MP?