Many of us watching or listening to events in the British Parliament yesterday did so with ‘open mouths’ when Jeremy Corbyn responded on behalf of the Opposition to Prime Minister Theresa May’s compelling statement about the disgraceful, unprecedented, irresponsible, brazen, nerve agent attack on people in Salisbury.
We had all fully expected him to stand shoulder to shoulder with the PM and with our security forces, to give them his full-blooded support to putting Russia in the World dock for this disgraceful attack on British people, involving the first offensive use on the European continent of banned chemical weapons since World War 2.
Instead, he unashamedly failed to denounce Russia and alternatively backed the Kremlin’s dismissive and demeaning response to the UK’s demand that they immediately explain how a weapon known to be ONLY in their hands, had been deployed to try to assassinate individuals on our soil. Rather than being behind his Country in standing-up to Russia, he chose to try (but failed) to make political capital.
Now we have come to fully understand that Corbyn while being a proclaimed far-left socialist (or even being a communist fellow traveller?), is equally a big lover of Russia and the power of the Kremlin. Nevertheless, when it comes to matters of this Country’s security and the protection of our own citizens, we had the right to expect him to denounce those Russian cretins in no uncertain terms, don’t you think? Yes, and so does the bulk of Labour MPs, as well as the mass of Labour supporters throughout the Country.
In what should have been a situation for a show of close-knitness and inter-party solidarity, with a circled-wagon type defence against unwarranted disgraceful aggression, it was turned by a disgraceful Corbyn into an opportunistic political attack on the Government of the day. Whereas ALL the other parties backed the Government, one man has isolated the Labour party by refusing to name Russia in condemnation of this foreign government when it has just attacked our Country with chemical weapons.
[Indeed at the time of WW2, Labour’s major politicians joined the Conservatives under Winston Churchill in a coalition, and they were Clement Attlee, Sir Stafford Cripps, Herbert Morrison, Ernest Bevin, and Arthur Greenwood; they were joined by 3 from other parties as well].
Other countries have quickly issued unequivocal condemnations of Russia and share the UK’s assessment that there is no other plausible explanation of who was responsible for the attack
Today, in a joint statement the leaders of France, Germany, and the United Kingdom, the US blamed Moscow for a brazen nerve agent attack on a Russian double agent and his daughter on British soil on March 4.
At the United Nations, Nikki Haley in her statement on behalf of the US, said:
“Let me make one thing clear from the very beginning: the United States stands in absolute solidarity with Great Britain. The United States believes that Russia is responsible for the attack on two people in the United Kingdom using a military-grade nerve agent.”
“This was no common crime. It was an unlawful use of force, a violation of … the United nations charter, the basis of the international legal order”.
A joint communique reads:
“The United Kingdom briefed thoroughly its allies that it was highly likely that Russia was responsible for the attack. We share the UK assessment that there is no plausible alternative explanation, and note that Russia´s failure to address the legitimate request by the UK government further underlines its responsibility.
“We call on Russia to address all questions related to the attack in Salisbury. Russia should in particular provide full and complete disclosure of the Novichok programme to the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW).”
The nations said the use of a “military-grade nerve agent, of a type developed by Russia” was the first offensive use of a nerve agent in Europe since the Second World War, was an “assault on UK sovereignty” and a clear violation of the Chemical Weapons Convention and a breach of international law.
The statement went on to raise concerns “against the background of a pattern of earlier irresponsible Russian behaviour”,
The Australian high commissioner to the UK, Alexander Downer, has stated his country is “right behind” the UK over the “Russian outrage”.
Even European Council president Donald Tusk said: “Irrespective of BREXIT and the tough negotiations, I would like to express my full solidarity with Prime Minister Theresa May in the face of the brutal attack, which was inspired, most likely, by Moscow
[Many of us had seriously doubted if ‘Jeremy Corbyn’ would be capable of carrying the heady responsibility placed on the shoulders of any British Prime Minister, but did he really have to prove he couldn’t be trusted and that his politics were more important to him than his Country?]