Great and greatly funny article by my friend, the brilliant author Alexander Boot. Below is part of it.
An update. Now 300 soldiers are guarding out 240 Libyan cadets. Cameron insists we won't grant them asylum.
But God forbid our leaders utter a single word suggesting they realise that the West and Islam are irreconcilable – that even in its present debauched state our civilisation simply can’t accommodate Islam as a dynamic force within our borders.
Yet our electorate has been corrupted to such an extent that, for any ‘statesman’ to be politically successful, he has to be politically correct. Hence the respect, both preached and practised, for any religion or civilisation, provided it isn’t Christian.
Hence also the criminal stupidity of our leaders who destroyed the demonstrably un-Western but still workable power balance in the Middle East to plunge the region into a blood-filled abyss of violence and unrest.
Now that the violence looks as if it’s about to spill over way beyond Iraq, Syria and Libya, our governments are reviewing their options.
One of them is yet another direct military intervention, and we all know how hugely successful this has proved so far.
Another is to intervene by proxy, using Iran (what with the Nato member Turkey refusing to play) to do the fighting for us. Ancient Rome had that kind of arrangement with the Vandals, remember how that turned out?
We may suffer the same way, since the inevitable price for Iran’s involvement will be the opportunity to acquire nuclear weapons, and you aren’t getting three guesses to figure out how they’ll be used.
The third option is related to the second: arming and training those local groups we perceive as our friends. ‘Perceive’ is the operative word: there are no groups in the Islamic world that are genuinely friendly to the West.
Some, however, are ready to fake amiability for tactical reasons, something we accept as the real thing. Both sides are perfectly aware of the ad hoc nature of any such alliance, invariably underpinned as it always is by background hostility.
They pretend to be our friends, we pretend to believe them. However, the two sides still diverge in one important area. They have a long-term strategy, we can’t think beyond the next election.
That’s why we refuse to recall that every time we trained and armed Muslim soldiers in the past they eventually turned their weapons against us. Who do you think armed the Taliban? Al-Qaeda? Saddam? Gaddafi? Isis?
Training thousands of Libyan soldiers at our Cambridgeshire base is a sign that we’re as ever prepared to equip our future enemies while pretending they’re our present friends.
We simply refuse to admit that our quarrel isn’t with this or that Islamic faction but with Islam as such. Well, if we still haven’t realised that there’s a clash of civilisations under way, we ought to be thankful to the Libyan soldiers for clarifying the point.
Since arriving in June they’ve succeeded in turning their corner of sleepy Cambridgeshire into a scaled-down version of Tripoli’s outskirts.
The Libyans went on an alcohol-fuelled rampage and there I was, thinking Muslims were supposed to be teetotal. A few of them spent £1,000 on booze in a single visit to a supermarket, an amount that buys a lot of mayhem.
Two of the soldiers have now been charged with raping a man, who presumably was wearing a provocative business suit. Not to discriminate, three others are being held on remand for several counts of sexual assault against women.
These peccadilloes were augmented by attendant charges of theft and threatening behaviour towards a police officer, which is legalese for head-butting. (Since no one has suggested that ‘Glasgow kiss’ be renamed ‘Tripoli kiss’, I’m hereby putting this initiative forth as my own.)
Anyway, this is where our MoD officials unveiled their comedy routine, and I thank them for making my morning so much more upbeat for it.
In a nutshell, the training programme, originally supposed to last until the end of the month, is being terminated effective immediately, and no future training will be done in Britain, what with the UK’s surfeit of tasty men and women roaming the countryside freely.
Instead of describing this simple development in this kind of language or, as would be my preference, more colloquially, the MoD spokesman delivered his first knee-slapping line:
“We have agreed with the Libyan government that it is best for all involved to bring forward the training completion date”. (“We can’t have too many raping and thieving Muzzie soldiers about…”)
Encouraged by the outburst of laughter, he continued in the same vein: “There have been disciplinary issues.”
I suppose homosexual rape, sexual assault on women, theft and head-butting a cop could be described that way for comic effect, but, playing it straight, I’d have settled for ‘crimes’ instead.
And then came the kicker, having punters rolling in the aisles: “As part of our support for the Libyan government, we will review how best to train Libyan security forces – including whether training further tranches of recruits in the UK is the best way forward.” (“…and neither do we want them to darken our doorstep ever again.”)
To add a few delicious touches to the stand-up gig, several Libyan soldiers, presumably not the defendants, have requested political asylum in Britain. And their government has so far failed to pay for the programme, while not offering much hope it’ll do so in the future.
Oh well, we’ve made our bed of nails, so we must lie in it – and it’s no laughing matter.