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Thursday, 3 July 2014

Nick Clegg on Israel/Gaza

On his Call Clegg radio phone-in show on LBC today, Nick Clegg (UK Liberal Democrat leader and Deputy Prime Minister) took a question on Israel and Gaza from 'Stephen in Croydon'; I agree with Mr Clegg's answer, and here is the Q&A:

S:         Oh hi, I've got a question for you, an interesting one. If the world was city, Israel finds itself in one of the toughest parts of town, surrounded by countries with little value for life.  If you were the Prime Minister of England, and there was a radicalised terrorist organisation that was now running Scotland or Wales, and they were firing up to 50 rockets every month into your country, would you accept the situation, or feel you had a responsibility to protect the citizens of your country?

NC:      Of course you've got a responsibility to protect the citizens of your country.  And, equally, you have an absolute need, a long term strategic need, to secure the safety of your fellow citizens, by seeking to entrench peace.  At the end of the day, we know, we all know that violence begets violence, and that the greatest security of all that can be provided to our fellow citizens, is to seek for people to live peacefully in co-existence.  But, of course, that means that people who seek to spread terror need to be confronted and combated, and every state has a right to protect its citizens from that.  But, equally, I think it means, certainly in the case of the Middle East, that in the long run, in the long run, however difficult it is, and boy is it difficult, there is no surrogate, there's no alternative to the safety that peace brings.

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