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.