George Galloway

In a debate on TV and religion in Edinburgh, George Galloway, MP for Bethnal Green and Bow, somewhat unwisely went toe-to-toe with Salman Rushdie. He said TV executives had to be “very sensitive about people’s religion” otherwise they “had to deal with the consequences”.

Rushdie responded,

Is that a threat?

and went on to describe Galloway as “craven”.

The simple fact is that any system of ideas that decides you have to ringfence it, that you cannot discuss it in fundamental terms, that you can’t say that this bit of it is junk, or that bit is oppressive … we are supposed to respect that?


And on 14 September “Gorgeous” George is debating Christopher Hitchens in New York. More balls than brains, obviously.

9 Responses to “George Galloway”

  1. Marc says:

    Isn’t this the same George Galloway who described the Iraq insurgents as heros or freedom fighters (or some such thing) – I can’t remember his exact words, except that they seemed to support terrorists and terroism. Bit of an odd thing to say… I’m with Rushdie.

  2. tom p says:

    I’ve long been a fan of gorgeous george, but he does seem to be veering towards militant pan-arabism, either in a craven attempt to appeal to a few firebrands in his constituency, or because he’s going a little mad.

    That said, debating Hitchens, particularly since it’ll be about the war, should be no problem for Galloway’s faculties – Hitchens is a pissed up old spite-monger who’s long since passed his intellectual prime. And, of course, the war was quite clearly based on a tissue of lies and has made the situation there far worse. He’d have to be the best debater in the world to even come out of that with a score-draw

  3. Andy Gilmour says:

    Mr. Galloway clearly hasn’t realised that all his debating opponents aren’t going to be as appallingly uninformed or intellectually-challenged as the esteemed members of the U.S. Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Permanent Investigations Subcommittee. But then defending blatant irrationality has never been easy, I suppose. Maybe he could make an appeal to Allah as Divine Authority in support of his position?

  4. tom p says:

    I doubt that Galloway will be defending irrationality, more likely he’ll be (against Hitchens) atacking the war and attacking Hitchens (who is a spectacularly easy target)

  5. Andy Gilmour says:

    “Defending irrationality” referred to the original George “I Love Jihad” Galloway vs. Rushdie debate story, where Mr. G appeared to condone supernaturalists threatening (with violence) our (relative) freedom of speech. The incomprehensibly inane invasion of Iraq is a completely seperate issue. It is fascinating to watch someone perform spectacularly well on one occasion (eg the Senate hearing I mentioned), then take a completely indefensible stance to try to appease supernaturalists in their constituency.

  6. Tim says:

    I heard the best description of Gorgeous George the other week: “He’s perfectly balanced – he has a chip on BOTH shoulders!” ;8)

  7. Dan Factor says:

    Galloway is a socialist. Arn’t they supposed to be for freedom of expression? Or does Galloway juck out his socialist principles when it comes to his favourite friends the Islamic fundamentalists.

  8. tom p says:

    Sorry Andy, misinterpreted what you were saying there.
    His position on this is ridiculous. The problem is that he’s great with inflamatory laguage, but rubbish at calm sensible words.

    Dan – not all socialists are in favour of freedom of expression, look at the USSR

  9. Julian Todd says:

    There’s a Christopher Hitchens interview on c-span from two weeks ago (Aug 18). He’s in such astonishingly poor form you wonder if he was ever any good.