On 3rd December 2015 at the United States Capitol in Washington a statue was unveiled in honour of Richard “Dick” Cheney, former vice President to George W. Bush. In line with all other past vice-presidents a marble bust will now rest alongside all other United States vice-Presidents.
Coincidentally, the previous day witnessed the British parliament, specifically the House of Commons, inadvertently honour Cheney in the debate on whether to extend the military intervention aimed at ISIS in Iraq into ISIS’s supposed heartland in Syria.
In August 2002 to what is now the run-up to the British-American invasion of Iraq, Dick Cheney addressed the Veteran of Foreign Wars organisation wherein he premiered the “risk of inaction” argument. He first claimed that “there is no doubt that Saddam Hussein now has weapons of mass destruction” before adding the coup de grace:
“Deliverable weapons of mass destruction in the hands of a terror network, or a murderous dictator, or the two working together, constitutes as grave a threat as can be imagined. The risks of inaction are far greater than the risk of action.”
Opening the debate in the House of Commons Continue reading
At the recent United Nations annual gathering of world leaders in September, President Barack Obama once again admitted to America’s role in the coup d’état which overthrew the government of the democratically elected Muhammad Mossadegh in 1953. This is not the first time Obama has mentioned this sore and defining episode in American-Iranian relations. In his 2009 Cairo speech Obama was more explicit in laying out America’s involvement. He acknowledged that during “the Cold War, the United States played a role in the overthrow of a democratically elected Iranian government.”
The reason why Obama may have used the indefinite article, “a role”, in describing America’s involvement is largely because there was another external actor. If America had acted alone in overthrowing Mossadegh’s government Continue reading
Osama bin Laden gained his reputation as a militant Islamist during the Western backed counter-insurgency – so-called “jihad” – against the Soviet Union’s invasion ofAfghanistanin the 1980’s
The main strategy employed by the West during this campaign to contain and repel the Soviet invasion was to recruit Islamists from around the world in a war against ‘godless communism’.
Needless to say, this alliance or collusion between the West and Islamist did not originally arise with the invasion ofAfghanistanby Soviet troops. Its provenance can easily be traced back to the challenges faced by British Imperialism in the earlier part of the twentieth century. Continue reading
“The British government have promised that what is called the Zionist movement shall have a fair chance in this country, and the British Government will do what is necessary to secure that fair chance…We cannot tolerate the expropriation of one set of people by another or the violent trampling down of one set of national ideals for the sake of erecting another…”
Winston S. Churchill to an Arab delegation, 30 March 1921.
“I do not admit that the dog in the manger has the final right to the manger, even though he may have lain there for a very long time…I do not admit, for instance, that a great wrong has been done to the Red Indians of America, or the black people of Australia…I do not think the Red Indians had any right to say, ‘The American Continent belongs to us and we are not going to have any of these European settlers coming in here’. They had not the right, nor had they the power.”
Winston S. Churchill to the Peel Commission on Palestine, 12th March 1937.
By the end of the official British presence inPalestinein mid May 1948, four hundred thousand Palestinian Arabs Continue reading
There is methodical logic in Iran’s supreme Mullah singling out Britain and the British government’s funded BBC Persia as the main foreign culprits in encouraging and fomenting sections of Iranian society to further actively question the outcome of the recent election.Britain’s alleged attitude toIran in the recent crises is no surprise to anyone who has merely glided into the history of theUK’s relationship with the Iranian people and indeed the people of theMiddle East.
A people’s right to question the outcome of strongly perceived electoral irregularities is beyond dispute. Yet what moral right does the British government possess in carrying the beacon of pro-democracy agitation? The answer is a resolute and definite none.
Britain, with all its historical involvement in that part of the world, simply has no record in implementing democracy in theMiddle East. Indeed, out of the major powers, only Britain had had the political power to impose democracy in the early histories of the modern Middle Eastern states. Continue reading