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We face fascists (Hilary Benn)

(B2) The speech of Hilary Benn, Labour's shadow Foreign Secretary, did not go unnoticed last night (December 2) in the House of Commons. For almost 15 minutes, the man who was Gordon Brown's Development Minister and then Environment Minister surprised more than one columnist with his verve, the strength of his arguments in defending the British commitment to an intervention in Syria. . It is worth listening to.

Beings who believe themselves superior

« We are confronted here with fascists. Not only by their calculated brutality, but their conviction that they are superior to all of us in this assembly tonight and all the people we represent. They despise us. They view our values ​​with contempt. They look down on our belief in tolerance and decency. They regard our democracy with contempt (...). What we know about fascists is that they need to be defeated “he asserted, referring in particular to the war in Spain in 1936 with the commitment in the international brigades or the commitment against Hitler.
« We must now confront this evil. Now is the time for us to do our part in Syria. This is why I ask my colleagues to vote for the motion this evening,” he concluded, before resuming his seat, to loud applause from the Tories but also from Labour. We cannot say that Jeremy Corbin, the leader of Labor was very delighted with this very warlike speech.

Hilary Benn is one of those - with Margaret Beckett - who symbolized the rocking of a good quarter of Labor in favor of the military engagement in Syria proposed by David Cameron. It should not be denied either that the commitment of François Hollande and the French socialist government has succeeded in convincing a number of undecided Labour, rather reluctant a few days ago to commit.

Remember Iraq

In the other camp, the speech of Alex Salmond, the leader of the SNP, the Scottish separatists was also structured, struck with arguments which illustrate well the difficulty of this commitment for the British, but also for all Europeans. " Who will believe that focusing on the city of Raqqa will not lead to civilian casualties. It's nonsense” “Remember the war in Iraq” he warned.


Nicolas Gros Verheyde

Chief editor of the B2 site. Graduated in European law from the University of Paris I Pantheon Sorbonne and listener to the 65th session of the IHEDN (Institut des Hautes Etudes de la Défense Nationale. Journalist since 1989, founded B2 - Bruxelles2 in 2008. EU/NATO correspondent in Brussels for Sud-Ouest (previously West-France and France-Soir).