Right Wing Nut House



Filed under: War on Terror — Rick Moran @ 2:37 pm

Spurned at the UN when they asked for a strong condemnation of Iran for taking British military personnel as hostages and helplessly watching as the European Union denied their plea to enact sanctions, Great Britain finds itself alone - out on a diplomatic limb with nothing to do but grovel before Ahmadinejad and humiliate themselves in asking for the return of their people:

Last night, there were reports ministers are planning a compromise solution to the crisis, which would see a Royal Navy captain, commondore or special government envoy sent to Tehran to publicly assure the Iranians the Royal Navy will never knowingly enter Iranian waters without gaining permission.

Margaret Beckett, the Foreign Secretary, has called on Tehran to negotiate an end to the detention of the 15 British soldiers and Marines Iran claims strayed into its waters nine days ago. She told reporters: “The message I want to send is that I think everyone regrets this position has arisen. What we want is a way out of it.”

President George Bush called yesterday for the release of the sailors, describing their capture as “inexcusable behaviour”. He said: “Iran must give back the hostages, they’re innocent, and they did nothing wrong.”

The Shatt-al-Arab waterway, we are told, has no internationally recognized boundaries. Except the Brits are now going to recognize Iran’s claim to a portion of them by promising not to enter those waters again, clearly acknowledging Iranian sovereignty. At whose expense? The government of Iraq’s expense. By announcing to the world that Iran was correct not only in taking their sailors hostage but in delineating a boundary also claimed by Iraq (unless the Brits want to disavow their dog and pony show last weekend with the charts and GPS coordinates), then their little plan to surrender to the Iranian fanatics has dealt a huge blow to Iraqi claims of ownership of those waters.

“Mistress of the Seas” indeed.

The Blair government won’t come out and say that the Iranians were right in kidnapping their people. But by saying they won’t “tresspass” again, they are implicitly making the Iranian seizure of their people an act of self defense thus justifying the snatch in the eyes of everyone who wants to see it that way. This includes most of the European and American left as well as much of the developing world who always enjoy the opportunity to stick it to a former colonial oppressor.

You can hardly blame Great Britain for taking this line in the crisis. The world has pretty much abandoned them. Where a week ago, the Brits were looking to internationalize the crisis, they have done a complete 180 and are now engaged in bilateral talks - much to the delight of the Iranians:

Des Browne said: “We are anxious that this matter be resolved as quickly as possible and that it be resolved by diplomatic means.

“It’s not my intention to go through the detail of that blow by blow, and it wouldn’t be appropriate to do that, but we are in direct bilateral communication with the Iranians.”

Sky’s Foreign Affairs Editor Tim Marshall said the comments could be significant, as Iran has been angry that Britain has taken the issue to the United Nations.

It has felt “this is only a bilateral disagreement, ie only between the two countries and it didn’t require intermediaries.

“If Mr Browne chose his words very carefully then the word bilateral was a deliberate use to show everybody that we are dealing with it bilaterally.

“It seems they are edging towards each other.”

That may be true. But Ahmadinejad has made it clear that any resolution of the crisis will be spun as a tremendous victory and a humiliation for a “great power:”

Suggesting the diplomatic standoff was not near a solution, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad underlined Iranian displeasure that Britain had turned to the Security Council and the European Union for support over the detentions.

“After the arrest of these people, the British government, instead of apologizing and expressing regret, over the action taken, started to claim that we are in their debt and shouted in different international councils,” Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was quoted as saying by state radio.

“But this is not the legal and logical way for this issue,” he said in a speech to a rally in Khuzestan, a province on the Iraqi border area where the Britons were seized.

And what would an Iranian hostage crisis be without the obligatory demonstrations at the offending nation’s embassy:

Iranian students threw rocks and firecrackers at the British Embassy in central Tehran today during a rowdy protest over 16 detained sailors and Marines.

Witnesses reported hearing up to eight small blasts and seeing smoke rising from inside the Embassy compound but a spokesman for the Foreign Office said that nobody had been hurt and nothing was damaged during the protest.

Reports from the Iranian capital were confused but at least 200 students and hardliners staged a rowdy protest outside the Embassy, throwing rocks and firecrackers, although they were prevented by police from entering the compound. A report that they also threw petrol bombs could not be confirmed.

The student, who were said to belong to the hardline Basij volunteer militia, chanted “Death to Britain” and “Death to America” and demanded punishment for the sailors for alleged illegal entry into Iranian waters nine days ago. Britain insists that the group, who were on routine anti-smuggling patrols, were clearly in Iraqi territorial waters.

All we appear to be missing in order to enjoy a stroll down memory lane is the hostages being paraded blindfolded in front of the cameras.

Clearly military action is out. And for the British government so is, evidently, sticking to their original position of demanding their people’s release without apologizing or acknowledging error. But when the rest of the world refuses to stand behind you, it can get quite lonely standing on principle.


  1. Sad. I’ve been blogging about this for days:


    Churchill must be rolling in his grave.

    Comment by Ian Dodgson — 4/1/2007 @ 4:23 pm

  2. When I first read the headline I read “Iranians” vice Iraqi and I was so happy. But this was a depressing post, but I’m afraid not far from what will happen.

    The US can’t outsource world leadership, the west in taking it on the chin. Israel last summer, the Brits now.

    Maybe when we have a Democratic president, the media and left will let us take this threat seriously. I see the capitulation to the Islamists fanatics by the west ending badly, with the loss of a major western city.

    And while there are things I admire about President Bush…his backbone and courage, the bare minimum requirement for a President needs to be the ability to deliver a speech from the Oval Office.

    Comment by Kate — 4/1/2007 @ 4:46 pm

  3. Bush prods Iran on hostages…

    CAMP DAVID, Md. | President Bush on Saturday called for the release of 15 British sailors and marine…

    Trackback by Unpartisan.com Political News and Blog Aggregator — 4/1/2007 @ 5:15 pm

  4. Excerpted and linked at 2007.04.02 Iran/Brit Hostage Crisis Roundup. WTF happened to that cowboy we elected?

    Comment by Bill Faith — 4/2/2007 @ 1:08 am

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