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UK Defense Secretary on Corbyn

Written By: - Date published: 12:22 pm, May 28th, 2017 - 49 comments
Categories: conservative party, International, political parties, Politics, uk politics - Tags: , , ,

Jaw dropping stuff.

There are two things worth picking up on from Fallon’s take on things, and only because I’ve heard them repeated by others.

Fallon asserts that foreign policy has nothing to do with terrorism because “Sweden”. I guess the logic runs that if Sweden is subjected to terrorist attacks and Sweden has not engaged in any military campaigns, then military campaigns can’t be a driver behind any process of radicalisation or ensuing terror attacks in the west. Something like that anyway.

The terror attack in Stockholm was carried out by Rakhmat Akilov, a rejected asylum seeker from Uzbekistan who was sympathetic to ISIS. That’s the same ISIS that has expanded into the chaos created by the west in Libya and Iraq and elsewhere. No connection to UK foreign policy whatsoever then. Also, in the reporting of the Stockholm attack, the Telegraph reported that –

European leaders expressed their solidarity over the attack, the first in Sweden since Taimour Abdulwahab al-Abdaly, an Iraqi-born Swede who was radicalised while living in Luton, detonated two bombs in central Stockholm in December 2010. (emphasis mine)

So again – I can’t see any connection, can you?

The other line being trotted out is a bit trickier because of that great friend of the politician – the ‘memory hole’. The line runs that the War on Terror was initiated after 9/11 and that the invasion of Iraq didn’t take place until 2003. The logic is of the fairly straight forward chicken and egg variety – terrorist attacks on ‘the west’ were taking place before any foreign policy guided by any over-arching ‘War on Terror’. Therefor current foreign policy has nothing to do with terrorist attacks in the west.

Of course, what’s ignored is that the Gulf War happened in 1990 and that the US had thousands of troops stationed in Saudi Arabia until 2003 when it withdrew the bulk of them. You may recall Osama Bin Laden – presumably echoing a general sentiment within Al Qaeda – was publicly antagonistic to the idea of non-Muslim foreign troops being stationed in Saudi Arabia.

9/11 did not happen in a vacuum and wasn’t a ‘one off’ either. There had been the attack on the Twin Towers in 1993. There had been the bombings of US Embassies in 1998. There was the attack on USS Cole in 2000. The blame for these attacks was placed at the feet of Al Qaeda, who had been involved in some level of conflict with the west since, well I’m guessing the wars in Yugoslavia in the the early 90’s if not before.

In short, resentment towards western foreign policy in the Middle East was already widespread and giving rise to terrorist acts before the 11th of September 2001. The War on Terror wasn’t some new policy direction. What it did was expand and deepen the broad approach already being pursued and that was already feeding into anti-western sentiments and that was already getting exploited by fanatics.

The Mr Fallon’s of this world want that to be over-looked, ignored and forgotten. Or maybe it’s more that the Mr Fallon’s of this world are just idiots who couldn’t join the dots in a kids numbered “dot to dot” book.

 

49 comments on “UK Defense Secretary on Corbyn”

  1. weka 1

    will read this after lunch, but super lol that cat photo. Perfect.

  2. Draco T Bastard 2

    In short, resentment towards western foreign policy in the Middle East was already widespread and giving rise to terrorist acts before the 11th of September 2001. The War on Terror wasn’t some new policy direction. What it did was expand and deepen the broad approach already being pursued and that was already feeding into anti-western sentiments and that was already getting exploited by fanatics.

    ME resentment of ‘Western’ foreign policy towards the ME probably started up at around the time of the First Crusades. Now, that resentment probably would have declined and vanished by now except that the foreign policy that produced it hasn’t changed. It’s still about grabbing ME resources for the West by any means.

    The Mr Fallon’s of this world want that to be over-looked, ignored and forgotten. Or maybe it’s more that the Mr Fallon’s of this world are just idiots who couldn’t join the dots in a kids numbered “dot to dot” book.

    It’s the former. They know damn well that it’s their policies that are the problem but their policies are making them rich.

  3. Incognito 3

    My (first) reaction is that Michael Fallon wants to kill two birds with one stone and he, or the PR honchos rather, saw an opportunity; timing is everything, in war and in politics.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 3.1

      Saw it, then tripped over themselves, gave away their position, and were slaughtered before they could get up.

  4. ianmac 4

    Well Bill. Jaw-dropping stuff indeed! What a good polite well informed interviewer. But what a blatantly arrogant devious interviewee is Fallon.

    • weka 4.1

      “you can’t talk to people like that”

      (Fallon talking about terrorists while basically refusing to understand what the interviewer is talking about)

      edit, Fallon used the word terrorist not people, but it’s still a projection.

  5. Marcus Morris 5

    Since Jeremy Corban’s claim that the Manchester atrocity is linked to foreign policy there has been a plethora of Tory bombast decrying such a claim. But JC is in very good company. Tune in to Friday’s editions of the BBC’s Question Time and listen to David Davis squirm as the audience derides his comments. I think that the weeping sore of the plight of the indigenous people of Palestine and Western Europe and the US’s unwillingness to bring justice for those imprisoned people might have more than a little not do with the awful current state of affairs.

    Incidentally, wouldn’t it be brilliant if there was a place, somewhere, where beside the expressions of grief for the Manchester victims one could place similar messages for the innocent men, women and children who are the “collateral damage” of the wars in Syria, Iraq, Yemen and similar places.

  6. joe90 6

    Fallon asserts that foreign policy has nothing to do with terrorism because “Sweden”.

    And Swedish arms exports are humanitarian, too.

    /

    http://www.jpost.com/Opinion/Swedens-humanitarian-arms-sales-to-the-Middle-East-397983

    • dukeofurl 6.1

      And Sweden involvement in Libya

      12 April 2011
      Eight Swedish SAAB JAS 39 Gripen fighter aircraft joined the NATO operation against Libyan government forces last week.
      Based in Sicily and backed up with a transport aircraft and 130 support staff, it is the Swedish Air Force’s first airborne combat operation since 1963
      https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2011/04/scan-a12.html

      Fallon seems have a Trumpian level memory fade

  7. One Anonymous Bloke 7

    These interviews (this and the one on Corbyn, or any political interview from the BBC in fact) really ram home the lesson of how servile our media (for the most part) are to government ministers.

    • weka 7.1

      That one above was worth watching just for that.

    • D'Esterre 7.2

      One Anonymous Bloke: “….how servile our media (for the most part) are to government ministers.”

      Aren’t they just! On RNZ, Kim Hill is one of the very few who can be relied upon to hold pollies’ feet to the fire in an interview. With regard to the two currently warming the “Morning Report” seats, they don’t do interviews like that one above . Not that I’ve ever heard, in any event.

  8. Anne 8

    I saw this interview yesterday on one of the online UK news outlets. Didn’t know who the interviewee was, but assumed ‘they’ had dragged up the most ignorant, thickest Tory MP they could find. Am flabbergasted to learn he was the British Defence minister. God help bloody Britain!

    Btw, the first invasion of Iraq began (if I remember correctly) on the 17 January 1991. I will never forget that date nor the preceding few months but that ‘s another story involving an American, a NZ Defence Service base, a civilian working on that base (me) and a former Defence minister. Intrigued? Well, one day I hope I can tell the story.

    • RedLogix 8.1

      Almost as intriguing as the person who told me a few days ago the ‘real’ reason Key resigned. 🙂

      • SpaceMonkey 8.1.1

        Very intriguing indeed… I know it’s off-topic but I’ve had two independent sources give me the same “real” reason for John Key’s resignation. And based on who they were with the connections they have, I am inclined to think they were closer than any of the other reasons I heard. The subsequent media silence following his departure has amplified their assertions for me. One day I hope I can tell that story as well… 🙂

        • Anne 8.1.1.1

          I wanna know the “real” reason now.

          If you can’t say so then can you say if it was personal? If you don’t answer then I’ll take it as a “yes”. 😉

  9. Incognito 9

    Interviews like these only achieve to further erode people’s trust in politicians and the government and thus undermine democracy. It is people like these who do untold damage to our society and the little fabric that keeps it hanging together. IMO it is but another variation on the theme banality of evil.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 9.1

      Do you find the questions troubling or the fact that someone asked them? Or was it the defence minister being exposed as a stupid liar?

      • weka 9.1.1

        I took it to be that the UK Defence Secretary’s appalling distruth is what undermines democracy and is the variation of banality of evil.

        • Incognito 9.1.1.1

          It is important to have this as clear as possible – it could also happen in NZ – so please let me explain myself better.

          Fallon honestly believes that his and previous Governments is doing the right things and winning (!) the war on terror. He gave Iran and Iraq as examples were things now have improved, according to him. This might be correct but depends on what he was comparing it to and he never mentioned the cost moneywise and especially not in the number of lives lost and wrecked, that of the untold suffering.

          Because Sir Michael Fallon, the UK Defence Secretary, shows this behaviour I’d expect a large number of people to swallow this hook, line & sinker. And so the cycle repeats and perpetuates and the acts of evil will continue. The point is that neither Fallon not his followers, for want of a better word, appear to demonstrate critical thinking, sound judgement, and (self-)reflection without which it inevitably and ultimately leads to a rejection of responsibility for their actions and consequences thereof. Just to make the point, Corbyn does not seem to suffer from the same cognitive deficiencies.

          • weka 9.1.1.1.1

            That’s a great description. I was just sitting there watching thinking ok, so it’s not just this shit in NZ. I could almost see the Crosby Textor puppetry hand behind Fallon’s back.

            I agree with you on the seriousness of this. If it weren’t for the interviewer I would have found it much scarier.

      • Incognito 9.1.2

        I apologise for my comment being ambiguous. The interview was great and the interviewer, Krishnan Guru-Murthy, was superb in his preparation, style & conduct, and execution of the interview. The interviewee, Sir Michael Fallon, was a disaster; he was emotionless and dogmatically droning as if controlled. He was not even pretending; he really believed what he was saying with unwavering confidence and certainty.

        Whether Fallon was “exposed as a stupid liar” depends very much on the perspective and confirmation bias of the individual viewer I reckon.

        Edit: I had not seen weka’s comment.

        • One Anonymous Bloke 9.1.2.1

          Thanks for the clarification.

          perspective and confirmation bias of the individual viewer

          …is probably one of the main reasons evil is so banal in the first place: a ready supply of parrots.

  10. mosa 10

    When Corbyn is the subject of a Tory attack they are completely woeful.

    Of course these attacks are the result of Britain’s involvement in foreign muslim nations.

    This U.K election campaign is showing how incompetent and out of touch the Conservative government really is.

    Targeting Corbyn won’t change that.

  11. roy cartland 11

    I love this interview. Actually I hate it. Love that it exposes what it exposes and hate that that needs exposing in the first place.

  12. D'Esterre 12

    “…Al Qaeda, who had been involved in some level of conflict with the west since, well I’m guessing the wars in Yugoslavia in the the early 90’s if not before.”

    Al Qaeda was born out of the mujahideen in Afghanistan, who were financed by the CIA to fight the Soviet forces sent to Afghanistan in December 1979, in response to requests for assistance from the Afghan government of the time. Neither Kosygin nor Brezhnev wanted to send troops – correctly assessing that it would make matters worse, and that the Afghans themselves would be infuriated by it – but in 1979, Taraki succeeded in negotiating some Soviet support. We all know how that ended….

    We have here a very good book on the Soviet entanglement in Afghanistan. It was written by a US journalist, if I remember rightly. Its name escapes me for the moment, but I’ll go dig it out tomorrow. The political situation was complex, and the author did a good job of explaining it, as I recall.

  13. esoteric pineapples 13

    Sweden is like Britain in that they are both big exporters of arms. Britain is now the second biggest exporter of arms in the the world.

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/britain-is-now-the-second-biggest-arms-dealer-in-the-world-a7225351.html

    Here’s a bit about Sweden arms exports

    http://www.businessinsider.com/swedens-dirty-secret-they-arm-dictators-2014-5?IR=T

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