Saturday 8 February 2020


My first three blogposts in this series have provided a summary of the key features of the first 86 pages of the Labour Party Manifesto for the December 2019 General Election. The last 21 pages of this 107 page document were focused on Brexit (six pages, now redundant) and a new approach to relations with the rest of the world.

I should repeat at this point how impressed I am with the coherence and integrity of the vision that underpins this socialist manifesto. Remember, this Manifesto starts as it must with the threat of global extinction through climate warning. Rebecca Long Bailey is one of the authors of this vital first section. Jeremy Corbyn was and is absolutely committed to responding to that threat. We need leaders who 'get it'. The present occupant of No 10, by his own admission, has problems in this area.

Tory inaction will help wipe out our civilisation from the planet

I have relished creating this summary of the Manifesto in these four blogposts. We in the Labour Party should be proud to identify with such a set of policies and we need to find ways and means over the next five years to get the message out there to the peoples of this land:

'This is what we as socialists believe will change all our lives for the better - do you really think the Tories are going to do better than this?'  

Here are the links to the first three parts:

I should also say I realise how misguided it was to produce a Manifesto that ran to 107 pages. I didn't have time to read it when the document appeared; I was too busy campaigning; I just read the media highlights. Why create a political document that very, very few of the electorate were ever going to
read? Yes, it remains a wonderful assembly of policies to transform the lives of UK citizens in the 21st century - but far better to label it as the in-depth Manifesto and reserve it for the attention of the political pundits in the media and activists to consider when they can. And then design a twenty-point A3 document that can be digested in a minute or two, expressing the essence of that socialist vision and which could then be delivered to every voter's home.

Art in the service of politics - 1945-style 
We need more of this visual genius now, as we face global extinction  

Here is the concluding section of the Manifesto. It is titled: 'A NEW INTERNATIONALISM'  and divided into four sections:


Labour will put human rights, international law and tackling climate change at the heart of our international policies, and use our global influence to end the 'bomb first, talk later' approach to security. Labour will always do what is needed to protect the security of people in the UK.  

We will not, as the Tories are doing, outsource UK foreign policy to US President Donald Trump. 

We will introduce a War Powers Act to ensure that no PM can bypass Parliament to commit to conventional military action. 

A pathway to Trumpland 


Internationalism is at the core of the Labour movement. We recognise our responsibility to confront injustices we see today and to correct the injustices of the past.

We will establish a judge-led enquiry into our country's alleged complicity in rendition and torture, and the operation of secret courts. 

Some of the world's most powerful states choose to sell arms to human-rights abusing states. Since 2017, the Tory government has sold well over £2 billion of arms to repressive regimes. That will not be our way. 

Following Trump - the UK as the poodle without power


The primary duty of government is to guarantee the security of people in the UK. Labour's defence policy will be strategic and evidence-led. Our security at home is made stronger when the security of others elsewhere is guaranteed too.

Labour understands the world is changing fast: 'An incoming Labour government will undertake a Strategic Defence and Security Review to assess the security challenges facing Britain, including new forms of hybrid, cyber and remote warfare. This review will also take account of the climate emergency, and associated threats of resource competition, involuntary migration and violent conflict.' 

An explanation for the term: 'hybrid warfare' 

What price the renewal of 'Trident' nuclear weaponry (£200 billion plus) if this is the real threat facing us?


The scale of the challenges facing our world are enormous. Conflict, climate change and a global economy rigged in favour if a tiny elite are driving instability and inequality across the world. A bold international development policy driven by social justice has never been more needed. 

Unlike the Tories, 'Labour is fully committed to a standalone Department for International Development, with an aid budget of at least 0.7% of gross national income'.

Labour believes in climate justice - 'Wealthy countries like the UK bear the greatest responsibility for the climate emergency. Countries in the Global south that have done the least to cause climate change are already facing the worse impacts, such as rising sea levels, more frequent hurricanes and greater food insecurity. We have a duty to right this wrong.'

If it gets any warmer - we've lost!


Such a programme deserved more than the 10 million or so votes it got in 2019; we have five years to make this vision a reality - and ten years to save the planet. Interesting times!

1 comment:

  1. It most certainly did deserve more than the 10 million or so votes!
    There is a fabled ancient Chinese curse "May you live in interesting times" .. and we certainly are!