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The Propaganda of Death

by craig on Mar 10th 2014 in Uncategorized

The terrible loss of life in the Malaysian air crash is tragic.  But the attempt to ramp up a terrorism scare is ghoulish.  We even had both the BBC and Sky speculating that it was the Uighurs.  Now the suppression of Uighur culture and religion by the Chinese had been a great and long-term evil, […]

Stating the Obvious

by craig on Mar 8th 2014 in Uncategorized

One of the ironies of the Ukraine situation which has drawn no comment I can find is that the Ukrainians have been lectured on democracy by Baroness Ashton, who heads EU foreign policy despite never having been elected to anything.  A distinction she shares with Baroness Amos, now in charge of beating the drum for a […]

Putin’s Victorious Defeat

by craig on Mar 7th 2014 in Uncategorized

Just a month ago, Putin had one of his pet oligarchs, the firmly pro-Russian multi-billionaire Yanukovich, in power in Ukraine.  Putin had been to an awful lot of trouble to ensure that Yanukovich got elected.  It is undoubtedly true that the United States and its allies funded various pro-western groups in the Ukraine – my […]

Bygones

by craig on Mar 6th 2014 in Uncategorized

Sometimes an ethical dilemma can arise between justice in an individual case, and the wider needs of society.  In general, pursuing individual justice should be the priority; the law should indeed be blind.  One of the greatest abuses of power in the UK in my lifetime was Tony Blair’s intervention to halt the prosecution of BAE […]

Crimea Referendum

by craig on Mar 6th 2014 in Uncategorized

The principle of self-determination should be the overriding consideration, and the Crimean Parliament’s decision to hold a referendum on union with Russia is something which always needed to be part of a solution.  But plainly  this month is much too fast, and a referendum campaign which gives people an informed and democratic choice cannot be […]

Yanukovich and Kabbah

by craig on Mar 4th 2014 in Uncategorized

My old boss Mark Lyall Grant, UK Ambassador to the United Nations, is a deeply unpleasant man.  But he was quite right to dismiss Russia’s legal pretext for invading Ukraine on the basis of an invitation letter from ex-President Yanukovich. The problem is Mark Lyall Grant is the last person in world to have moral authority […]

The Fashion for Hypocrisy

by craig on Mar 3rd 2014 in Uncategorized

Hypocrisy seems to be massively in fashion.  This from William Hague renders me speechless: “Be in no doubt, there will be consequences. The world cannot say it is OK to violate the sovereignty of other nations.” Then today we have the British Establishment at a closed event in Westminster Abbey in memory of Nelson Mandela.  […]

Putin and International Law

by craig on Mar 2nd 2014 in Uncategorized

By sending troops into the Ukraine, (others than those stationed there by agreement) Putin has broken international law.  That does not depend on the Budapest Memorandum.  It would be a breach of international law whether the Budapest Memorandum existed or not.  The effect of the Budapest Memorandum is rather to oblige the US and the […]

Territorial Integrity

by craig on Mar 1st 2014 in Uncategorized

I am inclined to think the concept of territorial integrity is overrated.  100 years ago, a guarantee of Belgium’s territorial integrity led Britain into the most disastrous of wars.  Thankfully for all the huffing and puffing about Ukraine’s territorial integrity, no outside power is going to be stupid enough to declare war on Russia. The […]

Goosestep Foot Forward

by craig on Feb 28th 2014 in Uncategorized

“Security state” fruitcake Rupert Sutton of the ultra neo-con Henry Jackson Society has an article on the puzzlingly named and indescribably dull Zionist blog Left Foot Forward, in which he attacks Moazzam Begg. Sutton displays precisely the mind-set of the security state, that led GCHQ to intercept the webcam chats of 1.4 million completely random British people, […]

Tories Campaign Against Scottish Independence (Shock)

by craig on Feb 27th 2014 in Uncategorized

Keith Skeoch, Executive Director of Standard Life, is on the Board of Reform Scotland, the neo-conservative lobby group which wants to abolish the minimum wage,  privatize the NHS and pensions and restrict trade unions further. It is difficult for Tories openly to campaign against Scottish Independence as everyone in Scotland hates them, so they do […]

Moazzam Begg a Political Prisoner Again

by craig on Feb 26th 2014 in Uncategorized

I first met Moazzam Begg in 2005 when he came to support my campaign in Blackburn against Jack Straw.  I was immediately struck by how gentle he is.  For somebody who has been through Guantanamo Bay and suffered torture and injustice, he is free of bitterness and rancour to a degree I find quite astonishing.  […]

Why Should Ukraine Not Split?

by craig on Feb 25th 2014 in Uncategorized

There had never been an Ukrainian nation state until the last twenty five years.  The boundaries of the old Soviet Socialist Republics were never intended to define nation states, and indeed were in part designed to guard against forming potentially dangerous cohesive units.  The Ukrainians are a nation and f they wish are certainly entitled […]

Cameron’s Prime Aberdeen Angus Bullshit

by craig on Feb 24th 2014 in Uncategorized

David Cameron is peddling bullshit of the premium Aberdeen Angus kind today.  At today’s oil prices, recoverable North Sea oil is worth a minimum of 1.2 trillion and a maximum of 2.4 trillion dollars.   Cameron is claiming that potential will not be released without government subsidy of 24 billion dollars, and that only the UK […]

The Security State Crushes Ever Tighter

by craig on Feb 19th 2014 in Uncategorized

The disgraceful judges of Britain’s High Court – who have gone along with torture, extraordinary rendition, every single argument for mass surveillance and hiding information from the public, and even secret courts – have ruled that it was lawful for the Home Office to detain David Miranda, a journalist as information he was carrying might […]

Syria and Diplomacy

by craig on Jan 21st 2014 in Uncategorized

The problem with the Geneva Communique from the first Geneva round on Syria is that the government of Syria never subscribed to it.  It was jointly chaired by the League of Arab States for Syria, whatever that may mean.  Another problem is that it is, as so many diplomatic documents are, highly ambiguous.  It plainly […]

Those Romanians and Bulgarians

by craig on Jan 19th 2014 in Uncategorized

One achievement of which I am very proud was my part in ensuring that the UK did not place restrictions on the right to free movement of the first EU Eastern European accession wave.  The arrival of so many Poles, Czechs, Hungarians, Latvians etc in the UK has been a brilliant social and cultural development […]

Signifying Nothing

by craig on Jan 18th 2014 in Uncategorized

  The image was the thing.  Those serried American flags beneath their burnished and distinctly imperial eagles.  Obama’s speech on the NSA was devoid of meaningful content.  The threats against Snowden and the references to America’s right to spy on its potential enemies – which seemed to mean everybody – were obviously heartfelt.  The “restrictions” on the […]

War Criminals on TV

by craig on Jan 13th 2014 in Uncategorized

Seeing Tony Blair speaking at Ariel Sharon’s Funeral – one war criminal eulogising another – was so horrifying it has jolted this blog back out of retirement.  There may be no justice, but there can be truth.

Edward Snowden Gets Sam Adams Award

by craig on Oct 11th 2013 in Uncategorized

Ray McGovern and the Sam Adams party have presented the Sam Adams award to Edward Snowden.  I am delighted.  This from Ray’s account of the event: In brief remarks from his visitors, Snowden was reassured — first and foremost — that he need no longer be worried that nothing significant would happen as a result of his decision to risk his […]

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