Reverse Whataboutery

One would have to be blind to not notice the sudden, and recent, uptick in stories and comments about Jeremy Corbyn and his relationship with the Iranian regime. Conservative commentators, politicians, writers and bloggers have – out of nowhere - rediscovered this avenue of attack.

It’s quite obvious why they are doing this. The ongoing case of Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, her detention in Iran, and the verbal infelicities of our Foreign Secretary adding to her troubles, mean that Iran is in the spotlight, and the government is under attack around this. Not least from Corbyn himself, who has penned articles calling for the scalp of Toryism’s blondest buffoon.

They are indulging in whataboutery. Perfectly understandable why they are doing it. The subjects are interlinked, not merely tangentially, but hugely. This is, say, no “but Yemen”, in response to queries about Syria. This is about Corbyn’s relationship with and attitude towards the very regime holding a British citizen hostage. By highlighting that, they hope to obfuscate. To throw up some chaff.

Well, y’know, the answer here is this:

I agree. Corbyn’s taking of money from Press TV, his fondness for attending the Iranian sponsored Al-Quds day march, his parliamentary interventions which can be read as “on behalf of the regime”, all this, all this list you have compiled? It’s very troubling to me. It resonates heavily with the reasons I refuse to support his leadership. So, I agree. Well done. You got me to agree.

Now, we’ve finished examining your “whatsbout”. I have concluded it has moral worth.

Could we, perhaps, return to the matter at hand?

Could we examine the blundering incompetence of the sociopathic chancer you guys have put in charge – in CHARGE – of our foreign policy?

Could we examine how foolish he was to provide ammunition to the Iranian regime with his ill-prepared remarks?

Could we examine how, in scrabbling to save his skin, he and his cabinet allies have been indulging in all manner of distractions, some of which involved not so subtly reframing the case in a way that could be interpreted as casting doubt on the innocence of a British national imprisoned by a theocratic regime?

We see through your rhetorical trick. It is not difficult to do so.

And, whether or not I agree with the proposition “Jeremy Corbyn is unfit to be Prime Minister, and this is because…”, by his actions, by his incompetence and his wilful unpreparedness, by the nature of his blustering REaction and attempt to shift blame, Alexander Boris De Pfeffel Johnson is manifestly unfit to be Foreign Secretary, and should, now, be contemplating a future of backbench isolation and his cosy sinecure writing guff for The Telegraph.

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