David Cameron is visiting the Gulf States in the hope of selling them British made armaments. Now apart from issues concerning the morality of selling arms, particularly in that particular part of the world, it is worth asking whether that is what the Prime Minister should be doing and whether it should not be left to the professionals in that particular field. Either way, I trust that BAE Systems and not the taxpayer are paying his costs, but somehow I doubt it.
Today, however, he had to break off from selling arms in Dubai to announce that he was setting up two enquiries, one to review whether the original 1996 investigation into child abuse in north Wales was properly
conducted and another into how the police handled abuse complaints
during the period. In practice, I suspect that he didn't make the decision at all, how could he possibly find time to read all the relevant documents whilst wining and dining potential customers? No doubt he was told what needed to be done by a senior civil servant or political advisor and merely made the announcement.
Later this week he is meeting Angela Merkel, and again one wonders what preparation he is able to do for such an important meeting whilst he is busy in the Gulf. Or will this just be a photo opportunity whilst our pro-European civil servants are having discussions with their German opposite numbers? Surely he should be spending some time working on what to say to Mrs Merkel, especially following the parliamentary vote that we should reduce our EU contributions?
I know what I'd say if I had the opportunity - something along the lines of "We fought two world wars primarily against Germany because we did not wish to become part of Greater Germany. If the other countries in Europe have decided that they now do want to be part, just count us out"
Merkel has threatened to call off the coming EU budgetary meeting if Cameron is proposing to veto any increase; Perhaps he should ask he whether Germany is now running the EU, rather than the 27 members! Unfortunately, even with parliament behind him, I can still see Cameron agreeing to an increase in the EU impost, no doubt convinced by the civil servants that it is the right thing to do.
On second thoughts, perhaps it would be best if he stayed in the Gulf States!
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