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.


Thursday, 2 October 2014


"All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing." So said philosopher Edmund Burke in the eighteenth century.

It was with this principle in mind that I voted for us to participate in the air strikes in Iraq against the Islamist jihadists currently wreaking death and destruction in that troubled region. Air strikes form only part of an overall strategy which includes support for Kurdish and Iraqi ground forces as well as humanitarian assistance.

I expect Parliament to be asked to support air strikes against ISIS in next door Syria in the not too distant future. I shall support that also, because one of the key principles of counter-insurgency is to deprive your enemies of a base. There is little benefit in driving these maniacs out of Iraq if they can quickly hop over a now non-existent border into Syria.

What has all of this got to do with us? This group of people are looking to set up their own Islamic state, which they call a Caliphate, stretching from the Mediterranean to the Persian Gulf. They plan it to be a state ruled by their perverted understanding of Islam with barbaric rules - at war with all of those around them. I have not a shred of doubt that it would become a base for planning and launching all kinds of attacks upon the west, just as the Taleban in Afghanistan allowed Al-Qaeda to co-ordinate the 2001 attack on the twin towers in which more than 3,000 people died.

We have not always intervened in the Middle East successfully. I have long believed that the 2003 intervention into Iraq was a mistake, a decision taken upon the premise that they had weapons of mass destruction and clearly they did not. But making a mistake then should not prevent us from doing the right thing now. If we do not prevent ISIS from setting up their barbaric state, we will only have to go against them in a few years time on our own streets, after they have committed some terrible attacks against our people.

Not all constituents agree with this decision and I have had some colourful e-mails. But many of you have been kind enough to communicate your support for the step we have taken. 

There is nothing more serious than voting for war. I know that our highly professional servicemen and women of the RAF will do us proud.

posted by Gary @ 08:14