Theresa May is conveniently nowhere to be found as controversy over a ‘demand’ from Donald Trump blows up around her. If Jeremy Corbyn had gone into hiding in such circumstances, he’d face an absolute shitstorm.
According to The Mirror, the US has asked if the UK will join forces with it against North Korea. In particular, it wants military help in spying on the country. The US is reportedly undertaking the surveillance mission to locate North Korea’s weapons sites.
But The Independent countered The Mirror‘s story, saying it had been told the claim was “flat out wrong”. Both outlets cite anonymous sources for their stories.
Either way, the US is clearly gearing up for a potential battle with North Korea. But let’s hope The Independent‘s story is solid. Because it would be one of the worst decisions Britain ever made if May allows us to be dragged into it.
Tensions between the US and North Korea have flared over recent weeks. The US has been threatening intervention and staging military drills close to North Korea. And the latter country has carried out missile tests and threatened a US-run island. Given the actions and personalities of the leaders of both countries, some believe a nuclear war is entirely possible.
Although a conflict between North Korea and America and their allies is unthinkable, everything that can be done is being done to prepare for that if it happens.
Western war planners are keen to minimise the death toll and that means a massive stepping-up of intelligence gathering against North Korea.
It would potentially be down to parliament to approve the move. But The Mirror also claims UK intelligence agencies are already spying on North Korea’s neighbouring countries to monitor how they “are reacting to each development”. This suggests there could be an appetite for involvement in some official circles.
The Independent, however, claims its “well-placed” source insists no request has been made. It says that the UK’s support for Trump’s “hardline stance” will be limited to support for tough sanctions of North Korea through the UN. Secretary of State Damian Green has also now waded into the controversy, saying “the sensible way for people to proceed is to work through the UN process”.
May is, however, yet to comment.
“With you, whatever”
The UK’s ‘special relationship’ with the US is by now synonymous with terrible military decision-making. In 2002, ex-prime minister Tony Blair famously wrote to then president George Bush saying “I’ll be with you, whatever” regarding Iraq. That ended in a catastrophic, murderous invasion that still haunts the world today.
So far, many signs point to the current UK government repeating that mistake. Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson said in April that Trump’s position on North Korea, and Syria, has “the full support of the British government”. And in January, when Trump’s next target appeared to be Iran, May began warning about the country’s “malign influence”.
For now, one source says the Tory government isn’t faced with a choice over its ‘special relationship’ and North Korea. The other, of course, begs to differ. But getting involved in these tensions would be a terrible decision. Because, to use Trump’s own words, a nuclear conflict between the US and North Korea would create “fire and fury like the world has never seen”. And arguably, it’s something that the world might never see again, due to global nuclear obliteration.
That’s surely not what most want to see happen. So let’s pray the Tory government isn’t making that a reality.
– Take action against military aggression with the Stop the War Coalition.
Featured image via Karl-Ludwig Poggemann/Flickr
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