I was a vocal opponent of the recent Iraq war, and remain highly sceptical about the continuing 'War on Terrorism'. We need a clear exit strategy, because the longer we are there the more consolidated the opposition to our presence will become. By invading, however, we took on a responsibility for the people of Iraq and I believe we should ensure their prosperity into the future.
On Civil Liberties:
The government's assault on civil liberties in the name of tackling terrorism is only providing a stick with which opponents may beat us with. It is important to be firm with the guilty, but there is nothing to be gained from punishing the innocent.
On The Lebanon:
The government's performance over the war between Hizbollah end Israel has been an embarrassment. The Israelis abused their right to defend themselves and launched a disproportionate and indiscriminate attack on the people of Lebanon as a form of collective punishment for the actions of Hizbollah. By refusing to call for a ceasefire and allowing the US to use airports to fly arms to Israel the UK became complicit in the Israeli's morally objectionable war effort.
On Make Poverty History:
Not enough is being done to tackle the unfair international trading rules that subsidise industry in the developed world (such as the EU's Common Agricultural Policy) and ensure that the poorest countries cannot get access to the markets they need to sell the only goods they can produce.
On The EU:
The EU moves far too slowly and is utterly unaccountable. In some areas it is vital the EU member states cooperate (such as in the energy markets, see http://gasissues.blogspot.com for details), but in others it seems that the EU is providing an absolutely unnecessary duplication of the member state's own role.
The voice of the people who live in Kashmir needs to be heard in any debates about Kashmir.
I do not believe that the UK should ever turn down entry to someone seeking asylum for political reasons. I do believe, however, that we have a reached a time where limits need to be placed on the numbers of economic migrants entering the country. Migrants have a positive impact on the economy, but population changes need careful planning in advance in order to provide extra schools and hospitals, and to protect existing communities from sudden social changes.
For more information about John's voting record and questions to the government about international matters please see theyworkforyou.com.
John often writes about international matters on his weblog.
Page last updated: 05 December 2012