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, 16 March 2017


This week at Westminster I attended a talk given by Condoleezza Rice. She was the National Security adviser in President George W Bush's first administration and his Secretary of State (Foreign Secretary) in his second. She was at the forefront of global events including the aftermath of the attack on the twin towers in 2001.

Highly intelligent, she became a Russian specialist at college which first drew her to the attention of the White House before the collapse of the Soviet Union. She is principally an academic, amongst other things, and heads up a department at the illustrious Stanford University in California. Unlike many professors I have heard in the past, she was able to earth her insights into the real world.

She was speaking in the Speaker's House at a packed event organised by the All-Party Group that I chair at Westminster, Christians in Parliament. She was with us primarily to share her personal faith as a Christian, which she did in an inspirational way, but naturally she also set out her view of current global events.

Mercifully she assured us that the Trump administration after a turbulent start will settle down and that the new President has put in place good people around him.

As an expert in Russia, her insights about the government of Vladimir Putin were especially valuable. The Russian people have not enjoyed good governance for a very long time, if ever. The unspeakable old Tsars who cared little for their people gave way to a brutal revolution which quickly led to the even more despotic regime of Josef Stalin and the Cold War. Following the collapse of the Soviet Empire in the 1980's they have now stumbled back into a further autocratic style of government. Putin is determined that Russia will once again be a strong player on the international stage, and he only seems capable of understanding strength if advanced with military might.

If his personal mission is to reunite the Russian people wherever they are to be found: Ukraine, Estonia Lithuania and Latvia, then we might be in for a bumpy ride. It is crucial that NATO remains strong and united and that any aggression against one of its members is deemed to be an act of aggression against all of us.

It was a fascinating evening and Condi Rice was a real star. It was such a shame she could not have been persuaded to stand for President herself!

posted by Gary @ 14:38