Daily Mail Refuses To Apologise For Ed Miliband Father ‘Character Assassination’

The Daily Mail has refused to apologise for calling Ed Miliband’s late father “The Man Who Hated Britain”, printing the Labour leader’s right of reply next to the original hatchet job on Ralph Miliband, and a lengthy comment piece defending the Mail’s view.

In a 1,000 word essay, Miliband called the Mail article a “character assassination”, and stressed how his father had loved Britain after coming here during the Second World War.

“Fierce debate about politics does not justify character assassination of my father, questioning the patriotism of a man who risked his life for our country in the Second World War, or publishing a picture of his gravestone with a tasteless pun about him being a ‘grave socialist’”, he wrote.

Ed Miliband has responded to the Mail's piece

Ed Miliband has responded to the Mail’s piec

But the Mail printed a lengthy editorial of its own next to the piece in Tuesday’s paper, entitled “An evil legacy and why we won’t apologise.”

“Today, we stand by every word we published on Saturday, from the headline to our assertion that the beliefs of Miliband Snr ‘should disturb everyone who loves this country’.”

The paper called Miliband’s response “tetchy and menacing”, teasing that “Red Ed’s in a strop with the Mail”.

“What is blindingly clear from everything he wrote throughout his life is that he had nothing but hatred for the values, traditions and institutions — including our great schools, the Church, the Army and even the Sunday papers — that made Britain the safe and free nation in which he and his family flourished.

“That’s why the Mail — which is not Pravda — said that readers who love this country would be truly disturbed if they understood about Miliband’s father’s views.

Ed Miliband Condemns Daily Mail ‘Smears’ About His Father Ralph

“We do not maintain, like the jealous God of Deuteronomy, that the iniquity of the fathers should be visited on the sons. But when a son with prime ministerial ambitions swallows his father’s teachings, as the younger Miliband appears to have done, the case is different.”

The paper also reprinted the article by Geoffrey Levy, under the new headline: “As the Labour leader reacts angrily to our critique of his Marxist father… We repeat: This man did hate Britain

The Labour leader was defended by Prime Minister David Cameron, in an interview with BBC Radio 4’s Today programme.

He admitted he hadn’t read the article or the reply, but added: “If anyone had go at my father, I would want to respond very vigorously. There’s not a day goes by when I don’t think of my Dad. I can completely understand why Ed would want to get his view across.”

But he said that he thought politicians were the “worst people to complain” about invasions of privacy and said he thought judgment was required by both politicians and journalists about how much of their private life is in the public domain.

A Labour spokesman told HuffPost UK: “Ed Miliband wrote his right to reply article because he wanted to state clearly that his father loved Britain.

“He wanted the Daily Mail to treat his late father’s reputation fairly. Rather than acknowledge it has smeared his father, tonight the newspaper has repeated its original claim. This simply diminishes the Daily Mail further.

“It will be for people to judge whether this newspaper’s treatment of a World War Two veteran, Jewish refugee from the Nazis and distinguished academic reflects the values and decency we should all expect in our political debate.”

From The Huffington Post . Report by  . 01/10/2013 .

Editorial. it’s not often that Liveraf finds itself on the same side as Ed Miliband, but this sounds exactly like the kind of muckraking guttersniping journalism which we have come to expect from that Scandal sheet, sorry, British newspaper, The Daily Mail. I read a lot of Ralph Miliband when I was a student and I was highly impressed by his scholarship and his erudite approachability. In all his writings I never found even the slightest hint that he hated this country or any other. Yes, he hated capitalism and he hated Fascism, and if he hated the Daily Mail it would have been with understandably good reason. And yes, the guy was a Marxist. So what; or do we now live in the kind of dictatorial straightjacketed society where the only views permitted are those which are endorsed by the Daily Mail?

While I think of it, when is the Daily Mail going to apologise for its own murky past ? Long before Ralph Miliband arrived in this country seeking sanctuary from the Nazis, the Daily Mail was publishing articles in favour of Mussolini and Hitler and Oswald Mosley’s Blackshirts, and describing the anti-Semitic thuggery of the Nazis as “minor misdeeds”. Some millstone that, especially for a self pronouncing patriotic British newspaper like the Daily Mail. 

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