There was much excitement last week when Susan Michie told Communist Party members – at a meeting at the Marx Memorial Library in Clerkenwell – that they should work ‘full tilt’ to propel Jeremy Corbyn into No 10. Her claim that such a stance could act as ‘a potential springboard for strengthening organic ties with Labour’ will no doubt have worried moderates concerned about the party’s direction of travel under Corbyn.
So, Mr S was curious to read Sarah Baxter’s column in the Sunday Times. Baxter writes that Michie was a contemporary of hers at Oxford university – where Michie was given the nickname ‘Stalin’s nanny’:
‘“Organically”, the communists are already astonishingly well-represented in the top echelons of the Labour Party, which is fast becoming a family-run affair. Michie was famous when I was at university for being a no-holds-barred Soviet sympathiser known as “Stalin’s nanny”. Her brother, the economist Jonathan Michie, was the best friend of Seumas Milne, now Labour’s director of strategy and communications, neither of whom made any secret of their pro-Soviet leanings.’
Well, they do say the Labour party is a broad church…