John Prescott on ISIS: a blunt tool hacking the West
Anti-phone hacking firebrand John Prescott uses his column in the phone hacking Daily Mirror to explain how ISIS can be defeated and the West remain intact.
Former deputy prime minister John, who backed the Iraq War, tells us:
Like 9/11 and 7/7, it will represent a moment when a country, its government and people realise an uncomfortable truth. That we can never truly be safe from terror .
Because we can never, hand-on-heart, say we can protect the public.
Whether in the Twin Towers of New York, the London Underground or even on the beaches of Tunisia, fundamental extremists will always find a way.
Right enough. But what to do when they do strike?
And while governments promise swift justice and retribution there is very little we can do.
Oh? What about bombs and guns?
There will be politicians who will use the deaths in Paris, just as they did after 9/11, to push an agenda of greater military intervention in the Middle East.
The Middle East is, in Prescott’s eyes, a unified mass. It is is not made up of different people with their own fights and dreams. It is THE Middle East, a definitive bloc. He makes no mention of the Kurds, a peoples used and dropped who are fighting ISIS and Turkey for their own state, the Coptic Christians, the Druze, the Jews, the Bedouin, Karim, and on and on.
The road to revenge didn’t stop with the Taliban in Afghanistan . It added new destinations – Saddam in Iraq, Gaddafi in Libya and then Assad in Syria.
Revenge? Does Preccott mean the moment when Al Qaeda murdered thousands of people in New York in an act of war? It can be noted that the “revenge” has resulted in no further attacks on the US soil.
One thing I’ve learnt is that this western intervention never helps, it only makes matters worse. So much worse.
No to Western intervention, then. Leave them to it, those Middle Easterners.
Our interventions, however noble of intent they may appear, only pour petrol on the fires of Middle East unrest.
That a pun, John, about the oil game?
So how do you crackdown on the terrorists in Paris? This will have been planned weeks if not months ago. How do you argue to close borders when the very extremists already carry French passports?
Prescott then answers his own questions:
To my mind, there are three things we can do. The first is to push for a regional solution in Syria.
But Western intervention doesn’t work. You said that, John.
That means the international community working with Syria ’s neighbours. A lasting agreement will only be reached by building consensus.
So the West should get involved with foreign countries, telling them what to do and so forth. What if thee foreigners say the West should butt out and get stuffed?
That takes me to my second point. From Afghanistan, to Iraq and Libya, Britain and the US stoked the unrest that allowed ISIS to emerge and thrive.
Stoked the unrest? Prescott is blaming the West for ISIS.
So we must stop all military involvement. Sending a drone to kill Mohammed ‘Jihadi John’ Emwazi may appeal to our baser instincts of vengeance. But it will be seen in the Middle East as a state-sponsored execution.
There he goes with that Middle East thing, again.
Britain and the US as judge, jury and executioner. Just like ISIS .
And there it is – the problem in a nutshell. Prescott symbolises the lack of moral conviction. He says we can’t be right because we have been wrong. Prescott sees shame and doubt. Whereas once the West was the Enlightened force for good, Prescott sees us as corrupted, even when faced with nihilists.
We hear echoes of Barack Obama, who said:
“Lest we get on our high horse and think this is unique to some other place, remember that during the Crusades and the Inquisition, people committed terrible deeds in the name of Christ… [And] slavery and Jim Crow all too often [were] justified in the name of Christ.”
When you’re that weak, little wonder you enemy is emboldened.
As the parents of Jim Foley said: “It is a very small solace to learn that Jihadi John may have been killed by the US Government. His death does not bring Jim back.”
Or as Journalist Steven Sotloff’s mother Shirley, whose son was Emwazi’s second victim, told NBC News: “If they got him great. But it doesn’t bring my son back.”
Stuart Henning, Alan Henning’s nephew, said he wanted Emwazi to suffer “the way Alan and his friends did”.
David Haines’ daughter, Bethany, told ITV News: “I think all the families will feel closure and relief once there’s a bullet between his eyes.”
So we must stop these drone attacks and take no further active military role in either Iraq or Syria. Let other regional players like Iran take the lead on this.
Iran? True enough, Iran-backed Shia militias are fighting ISIS. But Iran also arms Hezbollah. Iran is a dictatorship.
The final thing we can do is show Britain is committed to finding a lasting peace in all of the Middle East.
All I vant is a little piece!
We cannot let the running sore of ill-feeling and bad blood between Israel and the Palestinian territories continue.
How do you stop that, then, John?
Both Israelis and Palestinians deserve to live together peacefully. That means putting pressure on both governments to strike that deal.
How do you pressure them to get the result you, a Westerner wants, John?
The best tribute to those who died in Paris is not to send troops and drones to “eviscerate” ISIS and Syria. It is to channel that anger-fuelled energy to sue for a lasting peaceful solution across that region. Let the lasting memorial to those who died on Friday 13th be that they truly rest in peace.
In Prescott world you look good and noble by letting other do the fighting. If beating an enemy who represents everything your culture rejects is not worth fighting for, what is?