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Labour are teetering over a deadly precipice –Tom Watson is their last chance for survival

Leader of the Momentum campaign, Jon Lansman, has been caught plotting to take control of the Labour Party  Credit: Wiktor Szymanowicz /Barcroft Media

Is it finally here, then? Has it arrived at last? We’ve been waiting for 18 months for the simmering anger and hatred just below the surface of the Labour Party to combust into a full-throated civil war, à la 1981. Was Tom Watson’s not-remotely-veiled threat to Jon Lansman of Momentum via Twitter last night its very own Fort Sumter?

Lansman, veteran of the last internecine struggle that helped keep Labour out of government for a generation, and a key supporter, inevitably, of Jeremy Corbyn, was secretly recorded telling a Momentum meeting in the socialist heartlands of Richmond that the sunlit uplands of the New Jerusalem were within reach, so long as Len McCluskey was re-elected to lead Unite and Labour conference changed the rules for electing its leader.

Len McCluskey is running for a third term in office as Unite's general secretary . Credit: Victoria Jones/PA

This all sounds a bit esoteric and obscure. But it’s really not.

An outraged Watson, after hearing the recording, tweeted to Lansman:...

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