The gesture brigade demanding bombing – and perhaps an invasion down the line – is a dangerous response after the Islamist horrors of Paris

Kevin Maguire

Here we go again with a Start the War Coalition mobilising to plunge Britain into another bloody conflict .

The knee-jerk reaction of the gesture brigade demanding bombing – and perhaps an invasion down the line – is a dangerous response after the Islamist horrors of Paris .

Captain Cameron’s learned nothing and forgotten nothing from voting to conquer Iraq in 2003 to blitzing Libya disastrously in 2011 – via supporting fresh bodies for Afghanistan where 456 British lives were lost.

Our adventures in the Middle East, North Africa and Asia are a grim record we should be wary of extending.

Cameron courts Labour MPs because he’s unsure of his own ranks, a notional majority of 17 in the Commons at risk when 30 Conservative rebels grounded plans two years ago to target President Assad’s Damascus regime.

The Prime Minister should be eternally grateful to those 30 Cons , and Ed Miliband’s opposition Labour troops, or he would’ve launched the RAF as an airforce providing cover for jihadis fighting Assad.

Cameron switching sides, Downing Street’s gun sights retrained from the jihadis’ enemy Assad to Assad’s enemy Islamic State, shows his recklessness.

Nothing better illustrates the danger of blundering into a bitter bloody civil war than the finality of Cameron’s shifting alliances.

I sense that Jeremy Corbyn, who is right to be sceptical about endorsing another twist in a spiral of violence, is engaged in a losing Labour struggle.

Cameron may press the button before Christmas with the endorsement of as many as 70 of Corbyn’s mutinous infantry, according to calculations from a Labour MP and former Minister.

“I’ve gone through the names and it could be a third of the party,” the ex-Minister told me.

“Some will vote to bomb on principle, others to spite Jeremy.”

Yet nobody pretends a few British planes dropping munitions in Syria will make a blind bit of difference on top of the explosives aimed by America, Russia, France, Jordan, Turkey, Qatar and all the rest pounding the most pummelled corner of the globe.

Anti-war MPs feel under pressure since Paris, Cameron exploiting the impression of limpness in arguing for Islamists to be squeezed financially while diplomacy is intensified to broker peace between Syria’s warring groups.

But joining the bombardment, with all its unintended consequences – including a potential repeat of the 7/7 London carnage, is the riskier, ill-thought out option.

Cameron got half his wish before the election with Parliamentary approval to bomb IS in Iraq, where a Government invited Britain, but not Syria, where it didn’t.

No10’s wrong to paint the looming vote between a Chamberlainesque surrender and Churchillian defiance.

This is about Cameron as another Eden, a PM who mistakenly viewed British military imperialism as the answer to the Middle East’s woes.

Source: The Mirror

23 Nov 2015

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