28 November 2015, London, United Kingdom
What we see here is a classic situation of the old aphorism, ‘to a man with a hammer, everything is a nail’. So, we see a situation that we hate, ISIL, and we happen to have a big army, so that must be the solution.
It isn’t the solution, it’s exactly what ISIL want.
If we want to make all their dreams come true, we should start bombing them.
They want to be the heroes, they want us to be the crusaders. And they want us to behave as badly as we possibly can.
And we will.
What we’ve seen this century is the abandonment of all the things that we thought were civilised behaviour.
We started torturing people. We imprisoned people without charge. We attack civilians. We target-assassinate people who we don’t really know if they’re the proper victims or not.
We’re doing everything that ISIL wants us to do at the moment.
Why don’t we start doing the clever thing and start following the money. Who is supporting ISIL?
Well I can tell you why we’re not doing that because the people who are supporting ISIL are Saudi Arabia, which is of course our ally, and the biggest buyer of our weapons. We sell more weapons to Saudi Arabia than anybody else. So we’re not going to criticise those allies.
And Saudi Arabia is the biggest external funder of ISIS in the world. That’s our ally. That’s a nice situation isn’t it?
And of course, Turkey. Turkey is the country that is buying a lot of the oil that ISIL is producing. That funds ISIL more than anything else.
So two of the allies we’re going into this stupid war with, are the two people we should be criticising. Those are the two countries we should be working to defuse and to separate from ISIL.
We’re just digging ourselves into a hole.
We’re digging it deeper and deeper.
The whole of this century so far has been us digging a hole in the Middle East. And instead of getting out, we just keep digging.
So let’s stop digging. Now.