Mccartney 'Convinced Beatles To Take Anti-war Stance'
SIR PAUL MCCARTNEY has sparked controversy after taking credit for introducing THE BEATLES to politics.
MCCartney tells Prospect magazine he influenced the group's political interest after learning of the horrors of the Vietnam war in a meeting with philosopher Bertrand Russell at his home in London in the mid-1960s.
He claims he then proceeded to convert his bandmates to the anti-war cause - smashing the popular belief that it was John Lennon who politicised the band.
MCCartney says, "He (Russell) told me about the Vietnam war - most of us didn't know about it, it wasn't yet in the papers - and also that it was a very bad war.
"I remember going back to the studio either that evening or the next day and telling the guys, particularly John, about this meeting and saying what a bad war it was."
But an activist who led anti-war demonstrations in London in the 1960s has questioned MCCartney's account.
Former International Marxist Group leader Tariq Ali says, "This is news to me. It was John who was concerned about the war. He never mentioned MCCartney and I never thought of asking him to join us.
"If MCCartney was that way inclined, we would have known."