The outgoing leader, who led Labour to its worst performance at the polls since 1934, took a defiant stance as he insisted the party was “the resistance” against Boris Johnson and would be “on the front line” and “on the streets” opposing the Government. His extraordinary message also failed to mention the dozens of loyal Labour MPs who lost their seats in the party’s Midlands and northern strongholds where voters felt alienated by Mr Corbyn’s dithering on Brexit and roundly rejected the long list of promises in his left-wing manifesto.
Instead he boasted of “building a movement” and vowed to press ahead with “the fight”.
One former Labour MP branded Mr Corbyn “deluded” and accused him of failing to understand the damage caused under his “dreadful” leadership.
In the message, Mr Corbyn said: “2019 has been quite the year for our country and for our Labour movement.
“And now we are not just entering a new year but a new decade. And the period ahead could not be more important.”
He continued: “It will be crucial if we are to stop irreversible damage being caused by the climate crisis and the particular effects that has on people in the global south; if we are to stop the pain plaguing our country: food banks, poverty and people struggling to get by; if we are to protect our precious NHS.
“It won’t be easy. But we have built a movement. We are the resistance to Boris Johnson.
“We will be campaigning every day. We will be on the front line, both in Parliament and on the streets.”
Mr Corbyn said Labour will be “protecting our public services, protecting healthcare free at the point of use, protecting our communities, in all their brilliant diversity, and standing up for internationalism, global solidarity and co-operation, and working with movements and parties seeking social justice and change all over the world.
“And make no mistake, our movement is very strong. We are half a million people and growing. We are in every region and nation of our country.
“We’re not backed by the press barons, by the billionaires or by the millionaires who work for the billionaires. We’re backed by you. We are by the many, for the many.
Former Labour MP Ian Austin, who stood down at the last election after criticising anti-Semitism within the party, said Mr Corbyn’s message was “deluded”.
He said: “What will it take for Jeremy Corbyn to understand the damage his dreadful leadership has done to the Labour Party and the extent to which he and the party were rejected by the public?
“Under his leadership the party was poisoned with racism, extremism and intolerance. He ought to be apologising to the Labour supporters he let down and the MPs who lost their seats.”
Former Tory leader Iain Duncan Smith said: “Labour have withdrawn into a virtual chatroom. This leadership election now is in danger of becoming an exercise in virtue signalling to the hard-left.”