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Jeremy Corbyn Campaign Group Attacks The Sun For Remembrance Day Nod 'Lie'

09/11/2015 08:00 GMT | Updated 10/11/2015 15:59 GMT

Jeremy Corbyn's supporters have attacked The Sun newspaper for its "unacceptable" front page, which declared he had refused to bow at the Cenotaph on Remembrance Sunday.

UPDATE: Owen Jones Says THIS Is The Bow That Should Offend Us

The Labour leader was backed by hundreds on social media, with many people piling in to rebuke the newspaper for splashing on claims Corbyn had neglected to properly pay his respects at the annual remembrance event.

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The Sun's Monday front page

Despite Corbyn's tribute to the fallen dead only having been a small head bow, many pointed out on social media that it was most certainly there.


In a post amassing more than 5,000 retweets on Twitter, the team behind the #JezWeCan campaign - which backs Corbyn to be prime minister in 2020 but doesn't represent him or the Labour Party - derided the allegations as an "out-and-out lie", encouraging his supporters to help spread their counter-attack to the article.

Several media pundits also piled in to voice their concern, with one journalist from BuzzFeed UK lambasting The Sun for printing "the most absurd front page I've seen in a very long time".

Another, pointing to Corbyn's parents both having played their part in the war effort, commented: "He does really not deserve those kinds of front pages."

Others wondered whether the Labour leader could have ever done enough to placate Sun editors.

Former Deputy Prime Minister John Prescott, who served during the last Labour government, also hit back at the story, asking tabloid bosses whether they would print pictures of Corbyn talking to and taking photographs for military veterans.

Even 'Bake Off' host Sue Perkins piled in, claiming some journalists' furore over the bow row was a "vicious ad hominem sideshow" and calling for a return to the discussion of policy-based issues.

Corbyn, a pacificist and former chairman of the Stop The War coalition, laid a wreath with a signed note attached on Sunday.

It read: "In memory of the fallen in all wars. Let us resolve to create a world of peace."

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The wreath left by Corbyn on Sunday

Later that day at a memorial event in his own Islington constituency, the Labour leader also read a poem by the famed World War One poet Wilfred Owen entitled 'Futility'.

The poem was one of only five published during Owen's lifetime, in which he criticised the First World War as a territorial struggle between Imperial powers.

A serving soldier, Owen was killed in action in 1918, and is today recognised as one of the finest of Britain's war poets, with his "Dulce et Decorum est", and "Anthem for Doomed Youth" taught in schools for decades.

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Jeremy Corbyn at the Cenotaph

But Sun editors were left unsatisfied at Corbyn's performance on Sunday, calling on the Labour leader to "bow your head in shame".

It contrasted pictures of the Queen, Prime Minister David Cameron and Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron, all with heads firmly bowed, with a picture of an upright Corbyn, as he walked away from laying his wreath.

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Pages 8 and 9 of Monday's Sun

Responding to a request for comment, a spokesperson for the paper defended Monday morning's front page by claiming that "Britain's heroic war dead deserved more respect".

The spokesperson told The Huffington Post UK: "The Sun front page is a reflection that many on social media, including Labour MPs Graham Jones and Simon Danczuk, thought Jeremy Corbyn's behaviour at the Cenotaph yesterday was unacceptable.

"Although there are plenty on social media who won't like The Sun front page, there are just as many on social media and further afield who feel that Britain's heroic war dead deserved more respect."

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Jeremy Corbyn at the Cenotaph