Wednesday, 4 April 2018

If you attack someone for erasing history, be sure you are not doing so yourself

Your Comment on Monday (Daily Mail, 2 April 2018) attacks Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn for deleting his  personal Facebook page which you describe as “the erasing of  history” in the furore over anti-semitism raising its  nasty head in the  Labour Party.

The Mail needs to reflect a little on its own history in making such pointed attacks over anti-semitism. Over eighty years ago, in January 1934, the then owner of the Daily Mail Viscount Rothermere,  wrote  under his own byline an article headlined "Hurrah for the Blackshirts" in backing the anti-semitic fascist political party led by Oswald  Mosley's party.

Documents released by the British National Archives at Kew – part of the Foreign Office Intelligence files - in April 2005 reveal a series of supportive and congratulatory telegrams from Viscount Rothermere  to Nazi Germany's leaders, including Hitler, just months before the second world war.

In June 1939, Rothermere wrote to Hitler as follows: "My Dear Führer, I have watched with understanding and interest the progress of your great and superhuman work in regenerating your country."

(“Months before war, Rothermere said Hitler's work was superhuman, Guardian, 1 April 2018;

In the early 1930s, Rothermere was so close to Oswald Mosley’s British Union of Fascists that Daily Mail staff began to mimic their dress – wearing black shirts to work, Will Wainewright reports in his book “Reporting on Hitler.”

Your current proprietor cannot be blamed for the mistakes of his great grandfather. But as the Mail daily excoriates the Labour leader over alleged anti-Semitism, it should also accept he is capable of making errors of judgment, and should be allowed to honestly correct them, as has your newspaper

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