Gary's News and views

Gary Streeter MP for South West Devon

Gary writes a weekly article which appears in the Plympton Plymstock and Ivybridge News in South West Devon. The articles are published here.


Friday, 3 January 2014


Without hope we are nothing. So what are you hoping for in 2014?

I was talking to a woman recently who had moved into a residential home in Plympton. She had become lonely in her flat and was finding it difficult to manage. Now, she is much happier, eating properly and enjoying regular company. Her life got materially better at 87. 

It seems to be an essential human need: to have hope for progress for ourselves and the ones we love.

Looking out on the world in 2014, there are plenty of reasons to be worried. The economic recovery may be well under way, but still fragile and susceptible to shocks from other parts of the world. The Euro zone crisis was successfully shunted into cold storage but has not been solved. Will 2014 be the year when a member state, Greece or Portugal maybe, is evicted from the Euro? What impact might that have on us?

The bloodbath in Syria continues unabatewith thousands of civilians and children being slaughtered. In Egypt a year ago the Muslim Brotherhood had their man in power as elected President, now he is facing trial for treason and the Brotherhood, supported by over 30% of the people has been outlawed. Dont bet against civil war in this hugely strategic countryBoth of these conflicts also risk destabilising the entire region. Will 2014 be the year when this powder keg finally explodes? We are now preciously close to the situation where a two-state solution between Israel and the Palestinians is becoming impossible. If so, what is the alternative? 

Tensions between China and Japan have been running since the third century! Now they are sparring over someinconsequential islands in the Pacific. Will 2014 see this boil over into outright military action? What if the lunatic in charge of North Korea launches his one million soldiers into attack on South Korea? 

In the midst of all this, we hope for the best and strive to bring about progress. We will continue to work towards a strong economic recovery with more valuable jobs being created. We will work towards solutions to these long-running international clashes and will use every ounce of our celebrated British soft power and aid to bring peace and comfort, as well as protection for the UK

May our choices in 2014 both politically and personally be wise ones  so that the things we hope for this year come to pass

posted by Gary @ 18:16