Caroline Lucas responded to the Prime Minister’s call for more bombing in Syria by dismissing Cameron’s arguments as ‘neither comprehensive nor compelling’.
“The Prime Minister did not adequately answer the difficult questions over how British airstrikes in Syria will increase our security here in Britain or help bring about a peace in the region”, she said.
She went on, “Cameron’s statement was neither comprehensive nor compelling, and he failed to answer key questions set out by the Foreign Affairs Committee. In particular, his overly optimistic claim of 70,000 available ground troops from Free Syrian Army is roundly contradicted by evidence given to the Select Committee.
“He was unable to give any assurances in terms of the risks of western military action driving more recruits to ISIS. The Chair of the Foreign Affairs Committee is on record as saying, just a week ago, that “there is no great military necessity for the UK to be involved since planes are queuing up from a wide range of countries over the skies of Syria”. Surely the Prime Minister should listen to the evidence given to the Committee that made clear that the UK’s strongest contribution at this point would be through enhanced diplomacy.”
As usual, Caroline Lucas proved more than a match for Cameron’s lightweight arguments. He failed to provide an argument which should persuade a majority of the House of Commons to support him in his quest to add UK bombs to those being dropped by a host of other countries. But MPs have shown in the past how easily they are convinced that bombing offers an easy solution.
The Prime Minister should only receive support when he can show his strategy will lead to a solution in Syria. The aim is to end the brutality of ISIS, carry the support of the UN and lead to a stable lasting peace in the region. Such demands are difficult to achieve. It is far easier to respond with a few planes and bombs, and try to convince people this will lead to a solution. He might fool a majority of MPs, but he wont fool the people.