London Trades Antiwar Leftist for Antiwar Rightist

Eric Garris, May 02, 2008

London voters just voted out Ken Livingstone, the iconoclast left-wing antiwar mayor and replaced him with the iconoclast right-wing antiwar Boris Johnson.

Livingstone was a strong opponent of the Iraq War, and has spoken the connection between an imperialist foreign policy and terrorism at home. He has been a figurehead for the UK antiwar movement and the keynote speaker at several antiwar protests.

I don’t like Boris Johnson’s statements about Muslims, and I know I will get criticism from some of our readers for saying something nice about him, but here goes:

Johnson is not a neocon. In fact, he comes from the same sort of paleo-conservative roots as Pat Buchanan. He is opposed to British imperial dreams, and is in direct conflict with much of the UK Conservative Party.

In the last few years, he has been a strong opponent of the Iraq War, the rush to war with Iran, and Blair’s crackdown on civil liberties. Here are a few examples that we have run on Antiwar.com:

We must not let Bush wage war against Iran

I’ll go to jail to print the truth about Bush and al-Jazeera

Blair’s crackdown on freedom is an inspiration to tyrants

The war in Iraq was based on a lie – and policing Basra is an illusion

I remember the quiet day we lost the war in Iraq




18 Responses to “London Trades Antiwar Leftist for Antiwar Rightist”

  1. Like most of the British conservative Party, Boris Johnson did vote for the Iraq invasion way back when, and only later did he come out against it.

    The reasons why he won the election in London are more to do with local issues such as Ken Livingstone's anti-car measures such as the expansion of the Congestion Charge Zone to western London, and corruption within the Livingstone camp.

    Johnson does have a libertarian streak, and generally can be counted on to speak his mind. On the downside, he appears to be a member of "Conservative Friends of Israel", one of three shadowy pressure groups which have infiltrated the three main political parties in Britain.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Friends_of_Israel

    Back in 2004 he went on an Israeli sponsored political junket around Israel and could be seen in pictures posing and smiling alongside female Israeli soldiers. As a constituent of his, I wrote to his office complaining about this but just got some rubbish letter back from one of his flunkies.

  2. This is amazing. This guy hates the war and cares about civil liberties. He has actually been elected to an office. I guess voters aren’t always total morons.

  3. London also has preference voting.

  4. Well, as an American, I can only be happy that he, like his predecessor, is a staunch opponent of the war. As far as I’m concerned, the situation is unchanged: London remains in antiwar hands.

  5. All right, where’s Natasha? And just who is their Fearless Leader?

  6. What’s amazing is that London was pretty much guaranteed to have remained in antiwar hands. The third places contender, Brian Paddick, is from the Liberal Democrats whose MPs opposed Britain’s participation in the 2003 Iraq invasion:

    The 4th place finisher, Sian Berry is from the Green Party who also consider the Iraq invasion a mistake:

    <a href=”http://www.greenparty.org.uk/comment/412″ title=”Iraq invasion was wrong”

    Can you imagine a choice like that for mayor in New York, Los Angeles or San Francisco? The time has come now to hit Gordon Brown and the Labour Party while they’re down and really start pushing for full British withdrawal in Iraq. Even the Tories are getting in on the act, which can only mean more pressure on the US leader who inherits the war in November:

    So – with all the UK parties with the exception of Labour (including even the bit, kooky players like the UK Independence Party and the fascist British National Party – whose candidate for mayor got almost as many 1st preference votes as the Green’s – yikes!) either calling for withdrawal or at least an inquiry over the war, how can the Labour hangers-on in Parliament justify Britain’s continued involvement and the £1 billion spent per year now on the war?

  7. There is alot of ice on the lake…..When spring comes….the ice is slow to melt. It takes a great deal of sunshine to melt the ice……Every ray has its purpose…

  8. “Tory candidate Johnson praised faith-based groups for the “revolutionary” work they are doing in their communities and assured that their work would be supported if he won next week’s election.

    “I think we have completely neglected the revolutionary work being done in society by faith-based groups,” Johnson told the audience.”

    When Christians in Britain represent the enduring faith of Traditional Catholics, their Conservatives may understand when it may become appropriate for them to tel us their opinions about faith issues.

    The present situation has England playing the role of “melting pot”, for them to run their society on petrol tax. Faith issues for Catholics are better understood where Catholics breed Catholics.

  9. That was an interesting comment about Ken Livinsgton, that he is only an “iconoclast” This is the same guy who invited with open arms Yusuf al-Qaradawi into the London Labour Party.

    al-Qaradawi,” favours female genital mutilation, wife-beating, the execution of homosexuals in Islamic states, the destruction of the Jewish people, the use of suicide bombs against innocent civilians and the blaming of rape victims who do not dress with sufficient modesty (see the London coalition’s website: http://www.londoncommunitycoalition.org).”

    Muslim refugees in London have had this to say about Livingston.

    “He ignores the victims of Islamic repression. We never get welcomed at City Hall”

  10. It is interesting that the British (hence the Londoners, naturally) are summoning enough character to say no to Labor. They are finally burying the Thatcher years in the past and overcoming their fear of being right wing bums again, which is largely thanks to such utterly shameful two faced creature that the British Labor party has become, from top to bottom, from the party leaders down to party workers and their backers in the British media. Well done, Mr. war criminal Tony Blair. Here’s hoping for the day that the British summon enough character to put you behind bars for the rest of your miserable life.

  11. Yes, he looks like a decent, interesting guy. I watched his victory speech at BBC, and my impression matches with what Eric told us. But, my anti-war leftist acquaintance had been campaigning agaist Boris, because he is a Tory. We need a Peace party across party lines.

  12. [...] 3, 2008 Eric Garris reports: Johnson is not a neocon. In fact, he comes from the same sort of paleo-conservative roots as Pat [...]

  13. Phony Blair gave way to Phony Brown, who pretended to hate the war and the neocons. Now the other party of old privatize everything Thatcher puts up an anti war guy. Do you think he means it? You Brits may have to do more than just win elections. lol

  14. Fact remains, Boris Johnson or any Tory candidate would not have had a snowball’s chance of winning the position as mayor of London on a pro-Iraq war stance, irrespective of local issues. Ken Livingston would have hammered him mercilessly on this.

  15. In the UK as in the US how well a politician do in an election is very much dependent on his views about the Israeli-Palestinian issue and how he is viewed by Israel and its supporters.

  16. Funny a poster above uses his support for Israel as a negative for Johnson. At the same time the Islamist websites all over England are slamming him.

    Johnson is staunchly anti-Islamo-Fascist. He’s the Geert Wilders of England. His win is a great victory for Pro-Defense Libertarians worldwide. Here’s one libertarian who gets it; that Islamo-Fascism is the greatest threat to our liberties in modern times.

    Eric at Libertarian Republican blog.

  17. If newly elected London mayor Johnson is indeed a Friends of Israel fifth columnist in the Tory house, every peace-loving person around the world should be worried. Zionism is currently the most aggressive form of racism and oppression in the planet. Past and recent examples of its cruelty are easy to find in the internet and new ones continue to shock people every single day. Having an apologist for such a dangerous ideology in London is going to be a source of constant conflict.

    Irrelevant Eric Dondero sounds like a Zionist who pretends to be a Libertarian. But you cannot be a warmonger and a pacifist at the same time, sir. And using the oxymoron “Islamo-fascist” perfectly illustrates your mental confusion and inability to understand the world we live in. Dondero is a farse that sinks his readers into a swamp of ignorance. Right-wing libertarians with a desire to educate themselves would definitely benefit much more from the thoughts of intelligent writers like Justin Raimondo at antiwar.com.

  18. If by “I don’t like Boris Johnson’s statements about Muslims…” you’re referring to some of his negative comments, I’m not so sure Mayor Johnson is anti-Muslim as much as he is reflective of a growing dispassion for multiculturalism in Britain. A quick review of British papers and blogs indicates a growing consensus, in the wake of the 2005 bombings, that this pseudo-religion is as insipid as the British Right always said it was, and that by adnering to multiculturalism for as long as it did, Britain has nursed vipers at its bosom.

    That’s a damn good lesson for us here in the U.S.