Syria – the debate

photo+2-22In Iraq ‘chemical’ and other weapons of mass destruction were used to justify war. In Afghanistan it was promised British soldiers would be in there a short time and not a shot would be fired, in Libya it was to save a massacre. The intervention by the UK and the west in general in the internal affairs of independent countries has been nothing short of disastrous.

Has it helped the countries concerned? The answer would be a universal no. Has it made the UK a safer place? Unlikely. Yet Parliament is again being asked to sanction another military venture.

Parliament is being reconvened to debate action against Syria. MPs have been here before; they were convinced by the ‘dodgy’ dossiers produced by Tony Blair to justify the Iraq war. One would hope that MPs will be less credulous this time and not being hoodwinked into a potential disastrous intervention in the civil war being waged in Syria.

What is certain that should there be an intervention the consequences could be far reaching and unpredictable. Britain would be well advised to proceed with great caution before engaging in a campaign with no exit strategy and with little idea as to what the outcome will be.

The correct policy should be to continue to use diplomacy to get the warring factions together and try to seek solutions; military intervention will not help such an outcome.

Indeed earlier this week the United States postponed a planned meeting with Russia to prepare the ground for a Geneva recall conference to attempt a political solution to the crisis that has befallen Syria. To move from talk to war is not the way to solve things.

The 40 Welsh MPs should take a stand and ensure that the UK does not throw more petrol on the fire that is already raging in the Middle East.

Labour, having dragged the country into disastrous campaigns in Iraq and Afghanistan, should wise up and not throw its support behind the government. Douglas Alexander is right when he say’s Labour is “not prepared to write the government a blank cheque” on military action. But he and his party would be wise not to offer any cheques at all.

Indeed the Plaid Cymru leader Leanne Wood in opposing military action has a better feel for what the people think. For according to a poll conducted by YouGov for the Sun the public remain overwhelmingly opposed to British troops being sent into Syria, but more importantly the poll also asked specifically about whether people would support a missile attack on Syria. 50% of people would oppose this course of action, 25% would support it. Even Tories are against missile strikes by 45-33% (Labour voters are against by 54% to 26%, Lib Dems by 47% to 27%).

Let good sense prevail and rule out military action.




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3 Responses to “Syria – the debate”

  1. Dave Collins says:

    So, if I interpret this correctly, a wider Middle East war dragging in Iran and Saudi Arabia with use of chemical and biological weapons is none of our business. For this is the likely consequence of Obama letting his own red line be crossed and still failing to act. Presumably we (Europe./USA) shouldn’t bother having armed forces at all? This position used to known as ‘isolationism’.

  2. kp says:

    ‘The 40 Welsh MPs should take a stand and ensure that the UK does not throw more petrol on the fire that is already raging ……’.

    Oh Gareth, if only you would take a similar stance when it comes to matters of nuclear power, the Welsh language, education in Wales, the right to self determination and so on.

    Or in such matters does our own incumbent State always know best?

  3. Luke says:

    The conflict isn’t “none of our business” as Dave states. It is our business,and the UK is in fact already involved in providing “non-lethal” aid to the rebels. A majority of MPs wouldn’t back military strikes by the UK, reflecting public opinion. People aren’t convinced of the objectives or purpose of any strikes, and the case isn’t strong enough. Other countries like the US and France might decide differently, but there is no logical reason that the UK has to copy the positions of those states.

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