Are Labour faking photos in Bristol?

Here’s the evidence from Bristol. Judge for yourself.

First, the background: Busharat Ali is the Labour candidate in Lawrence Hill ward, Bristol. He didn’t like being attacked in a Liberal Democrat leaflet over Blair and Iraq.

He responded with a leaflet that said: “I was on the National March in London against the Iraq war” and had this photo next to those words:

Bristol Labour leaflet

The photo does not have a caption and, being next to the text it is, is clearly meant to illustrate him being on the march against the Iraq war. The photo is a pretty poor quality in the original Labour leaflet by the way, hence the rather pixilated image above. (And to check the context, you can view the full Labour leaflet here).

Now here’s the funny thing – have a look at this photo, which is from

Original Bristol photo

Looks familiar doesn’t it – save that it is a different person at the front of the photo. Oh, and this photo is really one of a group of pro-Hezbollah supporters rather than people marching against the Iraq war.

So here are the questions:

a. Is the photo in the Labour leaflet genuine?
b. And even if it is, is it really a photo of him opposing the war in Iraq or is it really a photo of him supporting Hezbollah?

Read more by .
This entry was posted in News.


  • The Hezbollah post behind him also appears to have been photoshopped over.

    The candidate also appears to have similar the same pessimism as the rest of the Labour party. He said (here):
    “I’m being hopeful, but I hope to win more than 700 votes.”

    Labour came second last time with 873 votes.

  • It’s a city centre ward where Iraq is still the biggest issue on the doorsteps. Would you expect candidates to ignore it?

  • Actually his character was already an issue on the doorstep – he is definitely a “character” and this development isnt surprising at all.

  • That’s not the march against the Iraq War, but the one against the Israeli invasion of Lebanon last summer. Perhaps he was at neither?

  • That really is pretty bad. Crude and grossly dishonest.

    It must have gone through quite a few hands in the Bristol Labour Party too. An important question for them is did their Bristol West parliamentary candidate approve it – he is known to be taking a VERY close personal interest in the campaign. Both the council candidate and PPC should consider their positions very carefully – why did NOBODY in Bristol Labour say, “hang on gang, isn’t this a bit, er, dishonest?”

  • James: The Bristol West PPC is Paul Smith – a former cllr chair of the Bristol Labour Party. It is inconceivable that an attack leaflet like that would go out without him having seen it and authorised it. There’s no way to prove that I guess. He’s sure to be damaged though. And the agent is the Chair of Bristol West Labour Party too. Is everyone tainted?

    Labour are on the ropes in Bristol, they’ve got nothing to lose by gambling like that. Well, nothing except the hope of ever winning back Bristol West anyway!

  • I don’t think it was photoshop. Looks more like scissors and pritt stick!

    Joking aside, even when badly pixelated, you can see the fakery because the pixel blocks are different sizes between the main picture and the head.

  • “Do you have so little respect for your opponents that you think a PPC or anyone serious would approve this piece of low-grade mallarkey”

    Chris – Yes, I’ve met them.

  • HEHEHEHEEEE!!! Priceless! That is so worth watching 😀

    Did he record it over an old tape of the Monaco grand-prix or something?

    PS That looked like him talking with old, ranting anarchist Ian Bone half-way through….

  • Racists! Islamophobes! How dare you question the integrity of a member of the vibrant ethnic community? Next thing you’ll be claiming Labour turns a blind eye to vote-rigging by ethnics, when we all know it’s only the LibDems and Tories who do that.

  • yawn

  • Chris Rennard 26th Apr '07 - 7:03pm

    This is more dodgy than the dodgy dossier which Labour claimed was the basis for the evidence of supporting Bush’s war in Iraq.

  • Cheltenham Robin 26th Apr '07 - 9:11pm


    I knew you could do wonderful things with Photoshop.

    Do you think it could be used to super-impose some policies onto David Cameron as he seems unable to produce any himself.

  • Tim Holmes: if you go back and read what I wrote again, you’ll see that I said the photo was of a group of pro-Hezbollah supporters. I think that’s a fair description of the group of people on the march who are in that photo. That isn’t making a comment about other people on the march or the purpose of the march overall.

  • Tim Holmes : If you go to the original photo source (URL in original post), you will see pictures of Hezbollah flags being tied to the lampposts in Parliament Square.

    They are the yellow ones with green Arabic script and a raised hand holding an AK47.

    They are being raised 4 minutes (see Big Ben) after the key photo in pretty much the same location.

    I think then it is fair to characterise that portion of the crowd as being broadly pro-Hezbollah.

    Also on that site is video footage of the crowd chanting “We are all Hezbollah”.

  • Watch it Neil, now you’re using facts to back up the argument. That’s not fair!

  • Tim – that is absolutely superb! You are plainly a man with too much time on your hands!!!

  • Yes, but he will be able to count his votes on the fingers of two hands.

    Tim, that link is priceless!

  • SAJIDI KHAN 27th Apr '07 - 6:39pm


  • SAJIDI KHAN 27th Apr '07 - 6:41pm


  • meiriongwril 27th Apr '07 - 10:16pm

    Don’t you just hate it when the computer not only puts all your letters into capitals, but then mis-spells a bunch of words as well?

  • It’s impossible to tell whether Mr Khan is a spoof, or a friend of Mr Ali. Says it all really!

  • Robert Dawson 27th Apr '07 - 11:54pm

    The photo is a fake. This shows the utter contempt that Labour has for the voters. Make your feelings known at the ballot box.

  • Richard Partridge 28th Apr '07 - 12:04pm

    Well it keeps that great Labour slogan alive.Labour runs on buggery, thuggery, bullshit and lies.

  • Mike Richards 28th Apr '07 - 12:41pm


  • Oh dear oh dear 28th Apr '07 - 5:44pm

    What on earth is happenning to the political system in this country?. Its true that we have descended to the levels of a banana republic, what with the flagrant vote rigging going on too. Its disgusting to think that men have fought and died for this country to preserve our our way of life, and continue to do so in the name of democracy- thank you Labour and the rest of the pro multicult parties.

  • Well I never — our vibrant ethnics have been enriching the LibDem community too:

    Councillor questioned over fraud

    Khurshid Ahmed, 48, a Liberal Democrat councillor on Oldham Council, was interviewed by police on Tuesday.

  • The banner saying “We are Hezbollah” is a bit of a clue 🙂

  • ebahg,
    Oh the humanity of it all.
    The poor victims of years of being victims of nasty british
    Hey, where is Jeremy Thorpe when
    he is needed??
    Old Liberals are the New WIGGERS.

    I believe in people turning up at a Polling Station, asked whether they can produce ID
    and proper documentation.A
    squad of Inspectors searching for “Missing Fathers,Tax Dodgers,OutstandingWarrants,Non Poll Tax Payers,and LORD LUCAN”.


  • Gobsmacked of East Bristol 30th Apr '07 - 8:33am

    Sadly, the most revealing video of the illustrious candidate has vanished, leaving only a trace. This was an 8-minute long Bollywood style promo featuring the candidate cool in shades, with the striking word “DON” written across the first few frames and posing by a variety of expensive vehicles, including 4-wheel drive (a local speciality for East Bristol’s thrusting new class of young businessman rulers). I forced myself to watch it all the way through abut a month ago, just to see if he came out with any policies. The real message of the wordless video remained unspoken, but was clear for those with eyes to see.

    Subscript as follows: “Most Successful Business Families of Pakistan Mr Rana Busharat Ali Khan BRISTOL DON DON PAKISTAN FALIM hot sexey girls want hot babas ary geo tv…”

    What is happening to East Bristol?

  • Laurence: If you’re referring to the constituency I think you are, she not only voted against the war but resigned her position as a PPS to do so.

  • Hywel Morgan 30th Apr '07 - 6:38pm

    Well we can probably work it out from there so you might as well tell us!

    The only likely ones remaining look like Cambridge or Falmouth & Camborne (though I can’t remember who the Labour MPs were for some seats!)

    As Laurence identifies himself as a software developer I suspect the former 🙂

  • It’s a fact of life that many people will vote in local elections on national issues. Given that, taking some moral high ground about not using any national (or international) issues is like campaigning with one hand tied behind your back – and leaflets are much harder to deliver like that…

  • Laurence @ 64 – That’s easy. If we hadn’t wasted £5 billion so far on the war in Iraq (led by Bush), the government would have been able to put more money into the local government settlement, thereby either reducing Council Tax or improving services. It’s all connected, you see…

  • In case you’re wondering why this scandal hasnt appeared in the local newspaper, the Evening Post, it is because it is apparently “too sensitive” to use at election time! LOL! The Lib Dems are up in arms about this, as you can imagine.

    This of course is totally unrelated to the fact that the political editor of the Evening Post, Ian Onions, is pally with the coordinator of the Lawrence Hill campaign, Labour PPC Paul Smith…

  • Just a few quick points about the Lawrence Hill 2007 election:

    1) The Tory candidate is an ex Lib Dem member, who appeared to move with his family to supporting Labour in 2005 and were alledgedly camapaigning for them on the doorstep on Polling day, and has recently become a Tory – Make your own minds up !

    2) Mr Ali has been seen ripping down Lib Dem posters from local shops, without asking the shopkeepers permission – In some cases the shopkeepers chased him down the road, but could not catch him – Some shopkeepers are, according to them, considering contacting the police about intimidation, after there were confrontations with some employees in local shops which resulted in perceived aggression.

    Looking forward to Friday and the results!

  • samina bilal 1st May '07 - 5:30pm

    hi, I had been reading the comments, I beleive Mr Ali to be completely innocent and photo idea, if it is fake, then has been produced by some of his friend, who might be a tout for competing candidate and how ome the real one came out so soon?????????? think twice

  • Samina: the faked photo appeared in Mr Ali’s own election leaflet. So how could someone working for another candidate have got the photo in Mr Ali’s leaflet?

    The reason the real photo came out so soon is that it is a very obvious fake.

  • Gobsmacked of East Bristol 2nd May '07 - 4:16pm

    Re: (69) Allegation that “Mr Ali has been seen ripping down Lib Dem posters from local shops…”

    Interestingly, on the street where Busharat Ali lives (in a neighbouring ward) at least one shopkeeper is displaying a Lib Dem poster “Malik for Mayor” side by side with Labour poster “Farook Chaudhury”.

    Is he hedging his bets, or is there something more going on?

    To this bystander the latest photo shenanigans just look like the tip of a very large iceberg in the community.

  • Bridget Fox 2nd May '07 - 4:22pm

    The sad thing is that it may well be true that Mr Ali opposed the war and that he went on the march – but by using a crudely-faked photo to “illustrate” this, he has made himself and, by association his local party, untrustworthy and ridiculous.

  • “Interestingly, on the street where Busharat Ali lives (in a neighbouring ward) at least one shopkeeper is displaying a Lib Dem poster “Malik for Mayor” side by side with Labour poster “Farook Chaudhury”.

    Is he hedging his bets, or is there something more going on?”

    It is common in my experience for asian run shops – particularly in areas of high asian populations to display posters for candidates from all parties – sort of a bit like a community noticeboard.

  • Gobsmacked of East Bristol 3rd May '07 - 9:15am

    In an interview with the “Somali Voice”, Busharat Ali represents himself as a “staunch Muslim” and expresses his strong preoccupation with Pakistani politics and the Umma in general. He says “…we direly need to redefine the term terrorist as I don’t consider teenagers a terrorists throwing stones on Israeli tanks-I consider them freedom fighters.”

    Busharat Ali says that he considers “the Easton/Lawrence hill area are predominantly ethnic minority areas…” This is not in fact true, but it shows how he wants to see East Bristol and where his priorities lie.

    Labour / Lib Dems are cynically and dangerously playing on loyalties and divisions in the area, pandering to vocal groups and effectively marginalising people (minority or majority) who are not organised.

    One East Bristol scene that gives a clue to what is going on may be seen where a church and a mosque face each other. The church is quiet, with groups of broken-down people drinking themselves into oblivion. The mosque is alive with a homogeneous group of men who stand confidently in the street on weekdays, networking busily.

    Whether LibDem / Labour strategy will benefit the area and all the people in it, or actually create longer term resentment remains to be seen.

  • Thanks for spotting that I missed out the word “all” when typing up the slogan in my previous comment, though it doesn’t make a difference to the substantive point – that there were some pro-Hezbollah supporters on the march?

    And while we are on the subject of corrections – your original claim was that I had said the entire march was a pro-Hezbollah one, but – as I pointed out to you – the original posting certainly did not say that. If the original posting had said that, you’d be right to say it was wrong – but it didn’t. I’m curious as to why you’re so keen to claim I made a blanket comment about everyone on the march? (Or do you now think that comment of yours was a mistake?).

  • There’s a bit of a gap in the comments, so here’s a rewind: Busharat Ali lost the seat to Farook Chaudhury. Local reports in Bristol are that on Saturday Steve Comer (Eastville) took over as LD Leader from Barbara Janke, and therefore is the new Council Leader.

  • Incorrect Peter: Farook was the Labour candidate next door in Easton. Busharat failed to beat the incumbent LD Sue Odonnell. He managed to cut her majority from 82 to 81… 😉

  • Is it true Monmouthshire Cllr Hobson is standing as a Conservative candidate at the next election in Bristol ?

  • Phil Hobson 6th Sep '07 - 12:31pm

    I had heared the rumour I was standing as a Communist candidate in Manchester West!! 🙂

Post a Comment

Lib Dem Voice welcomes comments from everyone but we ask you to be polite, to be on topic and to be who you say you are. You can read our comments policy in full here. Please respect it and all readers of the site.

To have your photo next to your comment please signup your email address with Gravatar.

Your email is never published. Required fields are marked *

Please complete the name of this site, Liberal Democrat ...?


Recent Comments

  • Slamdac
    The checks and balances are there to ensure that there are no rash decisions just because one party or group have a majority. If a settled majority want som...
  • Peter Davies
    Though none of the articles actually confirms the headlines, they do suggest that these rags are still trying to defend Brexit and with increasing desperation....
  • Martin Pierce
    Tom’s contributions make subscribing to LDV worth it all by themselves. Always clear-sighted and on this one I agree with the ‘even by your high standards�...
  • Yeovil Yokel
    Jeff - if you want your views to be treated with respect, then you need to cite more credible sources than the Telegraph, Mail, and Express....
  • Jenny Barnes
    Israel is only a democracy if you ignore Palestinians....