Gordon Brown’s war on terror

It was not good this morning to hear the "Prime Minister in waiting" tell us the UK had to use hard as well as soft power, and going on to say that we need to threaten the use of force and use it when necessary.

It would be good to know who the enemies are in his view. Tony Blair has spent much of his time as PM supervising the use of UK force, including assisting the US with full scale invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq. Our armed forces have performed magnnificently, despite the lack of proper equipment and back-up. Is the PM in waiting suggesting he wants to invade more countries as part of the so-called war on terror? If so, which countries does he think harbour terrorists, and why does he think invading them will make us safer?

Mr Brown spoke more sense when he talked about winning hearts and minds?? of young people in the UK who might otherwise be tempted by extremist and anti democratic messages. There is little evidence that successful invasions of Middle eastern countries lower the threat of terrorism, and plenty of evidence that it is difficult to help create stable democracies once a power vacuum has been created through toppling the original regime.

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3 Comments

  1. Ed
    Posted January 19, 2007 at 5:33 pm | Permalink

    Is this the same "Prime Minister in waiting" who has slashed "investment" in our forces over the past ten years?

  2. Marek
    Posted January 20, 2007 at 9:20 pm | Permalink

    Most intelligent people in this country realise that the Islamic venom directed towards the west has as its motivating cause the Israeli treatment of the Palestinians (who are of course Moslems).

    The best way of eliminating the terrorist threat would be to deal with this cause.

    If Israel could be told to withdraw behind the 1967 borders and to leave the settlements that they have built intact that would defuse most of the hostility. It should not be beyond the capability of the US to shield both Israel's and the new Palestinian state's existence with its military might.

    As for Iran, well they are no doubt developing a nuclear capability because Israel has nuclear weapons. A deal could be struck that would involve Israel giving up its nuclear weapons in return for other middle eastern countries promising not to develop their own, with appropriate international (military) safegaurds to ensure that this is maintained.

    Why do western politicians ignore these obvious moves for defusing Islamic anger and promoting long term middle eastern peace? Instead we continue to hear the ludricous and nebulous phrase the "war on terror" used to justify useless and aggressive policies which only worsen the situation.

    Come on Mr Redwood, come clean. Why is it that leading politicians from both major UK parties ignore these obvious policies and instead slavishly ape the US "war on terror" rhectoric with its correspondingly disaterous policies. Please tell us the secret?

    Intelligent, informed people are very disillusioned with politics and politicians, in part, for this reason. So why is the UK committed to stupid middle eastern policies? There must be a coherent reason for this – what is it? Having worked in the highest circles in government, surely you must know the answer. As an intelligent person you should be able to answer this question succintly and convincingly.

  3. Peter
    Posted January 22, 2007 at 4:29 am | Permalink

    "the so-called war on terror"

    ???

  • About John Redwood


    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, and graduated from Magdalen College Oxford. He is a Distinguished fellow of All Souls, Oxford. A businessman by background, he has set up an investment management business, was both executive and non executive chairman of a quoted industrial PLC, and chaired a manufacturing company with factories in Birmingham, Chicago, India and China. He is the MP for Wokingham, first elected in 1987.

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