Friday, 12 February 2010

Lib Dem Health Spokeswoman Jenny Tonge Sacked

The Liberal Democrat leader 'Nick Legg' (spelling from the bbc website, not my typo) has sacked his health spokeswoman in the House of Lords after comments she made about alleged organ trafficking in Haiti.

Jenny Tonge said that there should be an 'inquiry into claims that Israeli troops sent there after the earthquake were trafficking organs'. Her remarks followed an article making the accusations in the online journal Palestine Telegraph, of which Baroness Tonge is a patron.

Nick Clegg said the comments were "wrong, distasteful and provocative" and dismissed her from her post. The sanction fell short of removing the whip from Baroness Tonge because the Liberal Democrat leader did not believe her remarks were antisemitic. Mr Clegg has always said that Jenny Tonge would not be a member of the Liberal Democrat if he believed she was racist.

She has a bit of a history
- Last year she called Hamas leader Khaled Mashal “shrewd, plausible and actually very likeable” during her Syrian visit.

- 3 years ago she said: “The pro-Israeli lobby has got its grips on the Western world, its financial grips. I think they have probably got a certain grip on our party.”

- 5 years ago when still an MP Liberal Democrat leader Charles Kennedy told her to quit his front bench following her remarks about Palestinian suicide bombers. She insisted she did not condone suicide bombers despite saying she would consider becoming one if she were Palestinian.

George Monbiot said in 2006 'I think I have discovered the clinching argument for closing the House of Lords. It is the presence in that chamber of a peer called Lady Tonge of Kew.' She had just made some remarks on supporting the Botswana government on evicting people from central Kalahari game reserve in order to exploit them for mining.

Its a shame she seems to be so obsessed. I saw her speak in Reading a few years ago about the Iraq war and she was very good on then, but that was about 5 years ago.

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