It was noticeable last week that some prominent supporters of Respect were nervous about Monday evenings Dispatches programme, where Gilligan will flesh out his allegations, and no doubt play some of his undercover recordings. Andy Newman over at Socialist Unity was one of the first to comment on this programme, somewhat curiously stating five days before it goes on air that
"With two more Labour councillors rumoured to be making a principled defection to Respect next week and a Dispatches programme witch-hunting sections of the Tower Hamlets Labour party for their associations with the Islamic Forum of Europe this coming Monday, Tower Hamlets Labour now seem to be headed for a full scale crisis".
This defensiveness set me wondering if Dispatches had produced any dirt on Respect or Galloway, and indeed a recording apparently exists of Gorgeous George commenting of the IFE that they were not only crucial to his success 2005 in Bethnal Green and Bow but “I am indebted more than I can say, more than it would be wise — for them — for me to say, to the Islamic Forum of Europe. I believe they played the decisive role … in this historic victory.”
Putting aside the somewhat abject figure of Jim Fitzpatrick MP, we also need to consider the author here. The security services will hardly be unaware of organisations such as the IFE, and will be concerned at their influence. Whilst it does not necessarily make void the gist of Gilligans arguments, we do know that he received a lot of his intelligence on Iraq and the sexed up dossier from factions within the British state, concerned at the lurch towards war. Is that continuing?