UK politics look set to be quite interesting over the next couple of days. Tomorrow (I believe) Parliament is going to debate bombing Islamic State in Syria. And then on Thursday there’s the Oldham by-election.
My view on Syria is that Britain should stay out. But that’s mainly because the skies over Syria are filling with Russian, French, and American warplanes (never forgetting Turkish ones as well). And they’ve all got different targets/enemies. There’s no coalition, and no agreed war aims. The whole thing is a mess. And as a result Syria is a tinderbox in ways that Libya, Iraq, or even Afghanistan never were. And Turkey’s Erdogan has shown that he wants to set NATO against Russia. And other people probably have similar interests. And they may succeed.
Also, I don’t believe that bombing does much good when fighting an ideology. And the Islamic State is everywhere, not just in Syria.
But that’s just my opinion.
Anyway, from what I gather, Parliament will vote to bomb Syria tomorrow, and so I suppose we’ll be sending a squadron of biplanes or something. Do we even have an aircraft carrier these days? I seem to remember we were going to share one with the French.
But the parliamentary vote looks set to tear the Labour party apart. Jeremy Corbyn is anti-war because he’s always anti-war. But many Labour MPs support bombing Syria. A big rift has opened up in the Labour party, and I believe they have been given a free vote. Which amounts to there being no clear Labour party view on the matter.
And then there’s the Oldham by-election the next day. It seems that the odds on UKIP winning are shortening every day, although Labour still seems to be set to win it, just. But divisions within the Labour party over Syria (and any number of other things) may well persuade Labour voters to stay home, because they simply don’t know what they’re voting for any more.