All posts tagged: David Cameron

NO LEAVE to REMAIN

by W Stephen Gilbert Last Christmas, as you do, we received the usual batch of greetings cards from people we’re only in touch with at that time of year. Almost without exception, these cards included a message to the effect: “isn’t it terrible about Trump and Brexit?” As we are perceived as (ex-)metropolitan, enlightened, middle class professionals, we obviously must subscribe to all the views prescribed for that demographic. My partner can speak for himself. But I voted to leave. This is an outrage that many of my friends cannot understand and find difficult to forgive. They tolerate my intolerance of that ugly, specious, coined term that Theresa May likes to use twice in one mantra. But by my vote they think I’ve taken leave of my senses or become a class traitor or revealed myself as a closet fascist. Bracketing Trump and the 2016 referendum result is thought a legitimate summary of a year that was in many ways the most ghastly anyone can recall. It’s almost as though the leave campaign was implicated …

Brexit Never Just Meant Brexit

by Dan Mallon “Brexit means Brexit” is one of the many cryptic slogans that constantly emanated from Theresa May’s shambolic – soon to be defunct – Tory Government. What it means is anybody’s guess. Many have speculated it is Theresa May opting for a hard Brexit over a soft Brexit, however these are not tangible constructs, they are mental constructs. The idea of a hard/soft Brexit are nothing more than negotiating positions and seeing as no one has sat around a table yet, nobody can say for sure what the consistency of Brexit will be once it’s finally baked. Considering the European Union (EU) wants to make an example of Britain so as to dissuade other countries from following suit means heading into a negotiation taking a soft approach, will only end in tears. The idea that EU super-state ideologues like Guy Verhofstadt, will simply roll over and allow Britain have an amicable divorce from their pet project, is naivety to the extreme. One thing is for certain though: May’s Tories sure as hell don’t …

Terror in Britain: What did the Prime Minister Know?

by John Pilger The unsayable in Britain’s general election campaign is this. The causes of the Manchester atrocity, in which 22 mostly young people were murdered by a jihadist, are being suppressed to protect the secrets of British foreign policy. Critical questions – such as why the security service MI5 maintained terrorist “assets” in Manchester and why the government did not warn the public of the threat in their midst – remain unanswered, deflected by the promise of an internal “review”. The alleged suicide bomber, Salman Abedi, was part of an extremist group, the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group, that thrived in Manchester and was cultivated and used by MI5 for more than 20 years. The LIFG is proscribed by Britain as a terrorist organisation which seeks a “hardline Islamic state” in Libya and “is part of the wider global Islamist extremist movement, as inspired by al-Qaida”. The “smoking gun” is that when Theresa May was Home Secretary, LIFG jihadists were allowed to travel unhindered across Europe and encouraged to engage in “battle”: first to remove …

The Dangers Behind “Electability”

by Natasha Scott They say Jeremy Corbyn is unelectable. The same was said about Bernie Sanders. Sanders launched his campaign for the Democratic nomination with minimum name recognition. In the early weeks, he was polling at just two per cent against Hillary Clinton. By April this year he was neck and neck with her and talk about Bernie being unelectable became silenced as Sanders was ahead of her by about 10% in the polls when compared directly to Trump. As time went by the party machinery proved to be quite successful in disenfranchising the Sanders voters in ways not too dissimilar from what the NEC has used to disenfranchise Corbyn supporters. The corporate (establishment) media largely failed to cover it and when they did it was mostly skewed to work in Clinton’s favour. However, they did often talk about his campaign in regard to misogyny, they tried anti-Semitism but with Sanders being Jewish it was very difficult despite the fact that he highlighted the plight of Palestinians. Where Tens of thousands would turn up to …

The Origins of Labour’s Civil War

As the poisonous and potentially irrevocable conflict inside the Labour Party gathers pace, it seems a useful exercise to try to plot the origins of the animus. This analysis is written from the perspective of an unashamed supporter of Jeremy Corbyn; nonetheless, it is intended to be as factual and objective as possible and to avoid assumptions, speculations and accusations. Much of the heat in the present conflict is undoubtedly generated by the deployment of propaganda. The deconstruction of some of the myths that inform the anger is one of the aims of this essay.

Why the British said no to Europe

by John Pilger The majority vote by Britons to leave the European Union was an act of raw democracy. Millions of ordinary people refused to be bullied, intimidated and dismissed with open contempt by their presumed betters in the major parties, the leaders of the business and banking oligarchy and the media. This was, in great part, a vote by those angered and demoralised by the sheer arrogance of the apologists for the “remain” campaign and the dismemberment of a socially just civil life in Britain. The last bastion of the historic reforms of 1945, the National Health Service, has been so subverted by Tory and Labour-supported privateers it is fighting for its life. A forewarning came when the Treasurer, George Osborne, the embodiment of both Britain’s ancient regime and the banking mafia in Europe, threatened to cut £30 billion from public services if people voted the wrong way; it was blackmail on a shocking scale. Immigration was exploited in the campaign with consummate cynicism, not only by populist politicians from the lunar right, but …

Britain’s Tax Office, HMRC sold 600 state owned buildings to offshore property company

by Graham Vanbergen There are a number of interesting facts and figures emanating from the various offshore leaks of recent times. One of them involves Britain’s tax office HMRC, where there is a history of double dealing when it comes to tax haven transparency. Last February HSBC’s Swiss banking arm got caught ‘red-handed’ assisting wealthy customers concealing millions of dollars of assets and then literally and quite unbelievably found to be handing out bricks of untraceable currency to them. HSBC was, at the same time, providing these clients the facilities and information needed to circumvent domestic tax authorities, according to a huge cache of leaked secret bank account files. The leak clearly demonstrated that HSBC was providing account facilities to international criminals, corrupt businessmen and other high-risk individuals from all over the world, Britain included. The leaked HSBC files, which covered the period 2005-2007, amounted, at the time, to the biggest banking leak in history, shining a very bright light on about 30,000 accounts holding almost $120bn (£78bn) of assets, an average of £2.6 million …

Obama Requests Military Support for Possible War Against Russia

by Eric Zuesse According to an April 23rd article carried by Deutsche Wirtschafts Nachrichten (German Economic News), U.S. President Barack Obama is “demanding the active deployment of the Bundeswehr [Germany’s armed forces, including their Army, Navy, and Air Force] to NATO’s eastern borders” at Poland and the Baltic republics, to join the quadrupling of America’s forces there, on and near the borders of Russia. This is an extreme violation of what Russian leader Mikhail Gorbachev agreed to when he ended the Soviet Union and its NATO-mirror organization the Warsaw Pact, but it’s actually culminating a process that began shortly after he agreed to America’s terms, which included that NATO “not move one inch to the east.” Furthermore, DWN reports that on April 25th, the U.S. President will hold a summit meeting in Hannover, Germany with the leaders of Germany (Angela Merkel), Italy (Matteo Renzi), France (Francois Hollande), and Britain (David Cameron). The presumed objective of this meeting is to agree to establish in the NATO countries bordering on Russia a military force of these five …

Panama Papers cause Guardian to collapse into self-parody

You’d be forgiven for thinking, given the above picture, that the Panama Papers had something to do with Vladimir Putin. Maybe he was a kingpin of the whole thing. Maybe he was, at least, among the 12 world leaders implicated in various shady financial practices – including Petro Poroshenko, the saviour of Ukrainian democracy, and the King of Saudi Arabia.

Cameron Overreaches With “70,000” Claim Nobody Believes

From craigmurray.co.uk Cameron is in serious trouble at Westminster after overreaching himself by the claim that there are 70,000 “moderate rebels” willing to take up the ground war with Isis. Quite literally not one single MP believes him. There are those who believe the lie is justified. But even they know it is a lie. There is a very interesting parallel here with the claims over Iraqi WMD. The 70,000 figure has again been approved by the Joint Intelligence Committee, with a strong push from MI6. But exactly as with Iraqi WMD, there were strong objections from the less “political” Defence Intelligence, and caveats inserted. As the Head of Defence Intelligence, Major-General Michael Laurie, told the Chilcot Inquiry: we could find no evidence of planes, missiles or equipment that related to weapons of mass destruction (WMD). It was clear to me that pressure was being applied to the Joint Intelligence Committee and its drafters. Every fact was managed to make the dossier as strong as possible. The final statements in the dossier reached beyond the …

The 7 Questions Corbyn SHOULD Have Asked

by Kit Today David Cameron made his case, such as it is, for Britain extending their air-strikes from Iraq into Syria. British bombing will make Britain “safer” he says. “There are 70,000 moderate fighters ready to control the territory we free from ISIS hands”, he says. And on and on in that vein. Jeremy Corbyn – outspokenly pacifist – expressed his doubts through his “Seven Questions”. While I applaud Corbyn’s reluctance to send Britain into yet another Imperial war at the behest of Washington, his questions were soft, subjective and delivered with all the power of subsitute geography teacher asking for overdue homework. Here are his seven questions: 1) Will British action make a difference on the ground? Will it contribute to a war-winning strategy. 2) Can the conflict be won without troops on the ground? Would the Kurds take over, or other extremists? 3) Would there be mission creep? Can Cameron rule out troops on the ground? 4) Does the UN resolution give clear legal authorisation for action? And what is being done to …

Red Neoliberals: How Corbyn’s Victory Unmasked Britain’s Guardian

by Jonathan Cook via The Blog from Nazareth In autumn 2002 Ed Vulliamy, a correspondent for Britain’s Sunday Observer newspaper, stumbled on a terrible truth that many of us already suspected. In a world-exclusive, he persuaded Mel Goodman, a former senior Central Intelligence Agency official who still had security clearance, to go on record that the CIA knew there were no WMD in Iraq. Everything the US and British governments were telling us to justify the coming attack on Iraq were lies. Then something even more extraordinary happened. The Observer failed to print the story. In his book Flat Earth News, Nick Davies recounts that Vulliamy, one of the Observer’s most trusted reporters, submitted the piece another six times in different guises over the next half year. Each time the Observer spiked the story. Vulliamy never went public with this monumental crime against real journalism (should there not be a section for media war crimes at the Hague?). The supposedly liberal-left Observer was never held accountable for the grave betrayal of its readership and the …

‘UK bombed Syria to protect Iraq’: Cameron changes his story in UN letter

Russia Today reports that Britain’s ambassador to the UN is claiming Britain’s killing of Islamic State militants in Syria was legal because the drone strikes that caused the fatalities were launched to defend Iraq. This is in complete divergence from David Cameron’s earlier claims that the strikes were carried out in defence of UK national security. It’s being widely suggested this shifting narrative indicates the questionable legality of the action, given that the UK parliament voted down air strike in Syria back in 2013. Said newly-elected Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn yesterday: The government appears to have used an additional and entirely separate justification for this covert strike in their letter to the UN, which was not mentioned in the prime minister’s statement to parliament. Why did the government cite the [defense] of Iraq when justifying this strike to the UN, but not when doing so to parliament?” Is it because parliament previously voted against action in Syria, making this justification at odds with the will of the Commons? The prime minister cannot face two ways …

DOES VOTING ONLY PROTECT THE STATUS-QUO?

by Amit Singh at Consented On social media there has been a surge in people posting links urging others to register to vote. Operation Black Vote has also been running a campaign to encourage ethnic minorities to register and vote. The idea is that the vote is a crucial tool in individual empowerment that ensures our voice is heard within the context of democracy. When we think of democracy and democratic values the right to vote is probably the first thing that springs to mind. There is an almost unwavering faith in the idea that putting a piece of paper in a ballot box every five years means we live in the ultimate free society. Anyone who advocates not voting is instantly vilified and we often here people say ‘if you don’t vote you don’t have the right to complain.’ This again reinforces the idea that voting is a powerful tool to bring about change. Not voting is seen as lazy, petulant and ineffective. Russel Brand, for instance, famously declared ‘I’ve never voted, I never …

Incursions by whom?

Britain was pulled closer towards a renewed cold war with Russia when David Cameron announced UK military trainers are to be deployed to help Ukraine forces stave off further Russian backed incursions into its sovereign territory. So begins The Guardian’s new article on Anglo-American/NATO adventures in Ukraine. Apart from the risible suggestion that the elites in Washington, Berlin, London and Brussels haven’t yet pulled us into a new cold war with Russia — economic sanctions are themselves an instrument of war and are acceptable in international law only if approved by the UN Security Council — there is the intriguing question about whom exactly Patrick Wintour had in mind when penning the second part of his opening sentence. Russian-backed incursions into Ukraine? Incursions by whom, pray? The term incursions implies — suggests — temporary raids on someone else’s territory and, in this context, it indicates short bursts of invasion of Donbass by forces made up of people other than those living on the territories of Donbass, or the Donetsk and the Lugansk Republics, as they …