Referring to your leading article (DT 23-08-21): For most of the 20th Century, with the notable exception of Suez, Britain generally only went to war if its territory (or that of an ally under treaty) were threatened or attacked. But Mr Blair took us to war in Afghanistan and Iraq, based on a wish for regime change and, in the latter case, in fear of Saddam’s non-existent WMD.
That change in strategy increased the risk of terrorist attacks at home, as made clear by Osama bin Laden’s 2002 “Letter to America”, where he stated that al-Qaeda’s motives for their actions included Western support for attacks on Muslims.
But Blair’s continued to deny that connection, arguing that UK boots on the ground in the Middle East did not increase the risk of terrorist attacks in the UK – even in the face of the London attacks in 2005. It took a real imbecile to do that.
Attempting regime change in the Middle East is clearly not going to prevent attacks on the West, because terrorists can set up camp in any state sympathetic to their aims and they have a range of options by which to attack us. So it is time to stop committing blood and iron on the ground, in countries which are in a permanent state of sectarian civil war, with high levels of corruption. We do not have a solution to their problems and are only likely to antagonise them by interfering.
It is time to focus increasingly on our homeland security at our borders and against the enemy within. That way we can save lives at home, while avoiding pointless losses in a foreign field. That would be far less imbecilic than Mr Blair’s adventures.
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On Monday, after giving a White House speech about the coronavirus, US President Joe Biden failed to answer a question about Afghanistan, where thousands of Americans are still stranded. As he walked away, a reporter asked if he knew how many Americans were left in the country; he did not answer the question but kept on walking (see e.g. here).
The truth is that the President, like many others in the current crop of politicians, has been too busy playing with woke issues to address the crisis in Afghanistan. Biden has nominated as ambassador to Switzerland – where same-sex marriage is not legal – a leading ‘LGBT activist and strategist’, wealthy Scott Miller, whose same-sex partner Tim Gill’s Gill Foundation has been funding campaigns within Christian denominations for openness on sexual diversity issues, leading to historic splits (link).
As commentator Mark Steyn has observed, ‘Wokeness is weakness, and diversity is where nations go to die.’
Clearly Biden is determined to walk away from American responsibilities to the Afghan people and to his allies, including the British (link). That he had no answer to the reporter’s question was in fact the answer: he has no answers.
Respectfully, Ann Farmer
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My letter below, is in this weeks West Sussex County Times – except that they removed the quote from Prof Linzen, ie that “The influence of mankind on climate is trivially true and numerically insignificant”.
Andrew Griffith is the local MP.
Here is my letter:
It was interesting to read Andrew Griffith’s comments on the Government’s net CO2 zero policy, in the WSCT dated August 12th.
We understand that the cost of a noisy air source heat pump might reduce to around £4,000 in future. But to that must be added the cost of replacing radiators and pipework in over 25 million homes, raising the future cost probably to around £10,000 for each home.
Added to that, the National Grid seemingly estimates the overall cost of grid decarbonisation at £3trillion, or around £120,000 per family, to meet the UK’s net zero target. That takes the total cost to around £3.25trillion, or £130,000 per family.
To that must be added the cost of decarbonising transport and industrial systems etc, bearing in mind that petrol and diesel duties (around £30 bn pa – or £10,000 per vehicle) will have to be raised by other means.
Physicist Prof Richard Lindzen is clear that atmospheric levels of CO2 lag global temperature – not the other way around. He concludes that “The influence of mankind on climate is trivially true and numerically insignificant”
Consider also that CO2 comprises only around 0.04% of the atmosphere, that human activity contributes around 3% of that, while the UK contributes around 1% of that. Next multiply the product of those percentages, by the % contribution of CO2 to the greenhouse effect and you might well come to a conclusion not much different from Prof Linzen’s.
If a business embarked on such a strategy, without a fully tested cost/benefit analysis, then the board would be kicked out by shareholders. Sadly UK shareholders have been hijacked by a vehicle which they did not vote to board. Why not circulate an explanatory booklet to them – as with the EU Referendum – then ask them to confirm that they are ready to pay the bill? Rgds etc …
Respectfully, Roger Arthur
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You report (DT 23-08-21) that the EU plans to stop sharing data on the threat from terrorists – if the UK diverges too far from EU regulations – at a time when the threat is increasing. But why would we leave the EU and continue to comply with their rulebook?
We don’t need security strategists to tell us that sharing of intelligence, between NATO members is vital, if the Alliance is to have any chance of fulfilling its purpose.
NATO members should remind the EU that it is not a member state (or even a state), that they value the security of their people – far above EU spiteful actions against the UK – and that they will continue to meet their NATO obligations, by sharing vital information.
Otherwise, why would we continue to share defensive duties with them on the Russian border?
Respectfully, Roger Arthur