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The Death of Leninism in the UK

Since the SWP has been a prominent issue throughout the history of Harry’s Place, I thought this obituary of the SWP by Paul Anderson might deserve some attention:

Here is his conclusion:

after 9/11, the SWP threw itself into anti-war activism – and found itself new allies in the form of the Muslim Association of Britain and the maverick pro-Saddam Hussein Labour MP George Galloway. The result, after Galloway’s expulsion from Labour in 2003, was the creation of a another new electoral party, Respect, which did very well for Gorgeous George, who won Bethnal Green and Bow in 2005, but not so well for the SWP, which got few recruits from the initiative and a lot of ridicule for cosying up to barmy reactionary Islamists.

The SWP left Respect and jettisoned the two leading figures most responsible for the Islamist turn, John Rees and Lindsay German, who now run a website-cum-party called Counterfire. It was obvious when they left that the party was in trouble, but it still dominated the far-left scene: every union branch had a resident SWPer. Now the party is a laughing-stock: no one will even talk to them after all this. I’m not mourning, but it’s worth noting. British Leninism is finished.