Peter Reynolds

The life and times of Peter Reynolds

Posts Tagged ‘Israel

George Galloway Talks More Sense On Syria Than Anyone Else. Where Is A Credible British Leader?

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George Galloway on the Sunday Politics

George Galloway on the Sunday Politics

On this morning’s BBC politics-fest the most credible views on Syria I heard were from George Galloway.  He was balanced, intelligent, rational and focused on the issue rather than his personal advancement.

Corbyn is a pacifist, whatever he says and that is an untenable position for a leader.  I agree with him about the futility of bombing in Syria and that it will create rather than solve problems for us at home in the UK. However, I think he is incredible and incompetent. His confusion about the use of deadly force against marauding terrorists was unforgiveable.  He won’t last much longer.

Michael Fallon is a bumptious, Tory fool, better suited to life as a provincial solicitor than as defence minister.  Dr Liam Fox would be more use caring for patients than as a warmongering, hard right authoritarian disguised as a friendly GP. Cameron is a liar about there being 70,000 soldiers on the ground ready to support action against Daesh/ISIS, just like Blair was a liar about Saddam Hussein able to launch a WMD attack in 45 minutes.  I’m afraid I think his principal motivation is that he wants to be at the ‘top table’ with Obama and Hollande and he feels left out.  It’s a pathetic reason but I fear it’s true.  It’s his personal prestige he’s most concerned about.

I can see no argument at all that bombing in Syria will make us safer, the reverse is the truth.  The story about British forces having greater precision bombing capability with our Brimstone missiles is propaganda.  I believe that the US, France, Russia and all modern military powers have at least equivalent if not better capability.

Dropping bombsThe most convincing argument I can see for bombing in Syria is that our ally, France, has asked for our assistance.  I would be more ready to support such action if we were prepared to do the job properly and that means putting in our own ground forces.

I don’t want war but Daesh/ISIS is a evil ideology just like Nazism and we need to destroy it.  I think we need to put a substantial force of highly trained professional soldiers on the ground and expect that we will take many casualties but that we will root out the terrorists house by house, room by room until the job is properly done and that includes removing Assad. Thereafter, we need to be ready to stay there for at least a decade until civil society is restored.  This is why we have a military and if we don’t use it as necessary then why do we bother?

I am more convinced every day that the election result this year was a disaster for Britain.  Cameron is an oily, self-serving creep with no integrity, no backbone and interested only in advancing his own interests. The Tory frontbench is composed mainly of toady yes men (and women) who fail to achieve the intellectual and moral qualities that we should expect from ministers.  Personally I blame the Tory dominated press and all those weak, flip flopping voters who turned on the Liberal Democrats.  Another coalition would have set Britain on the right course.  That we now have a government with a mandate from just 24% of the electorate is absolute proof that British democracy has failed.

I fear that the outcome of all this will be more half measures.  Then there will be another terrorist outrage, quite probably in the UK, possibly even in America. Then we’ll have more handwringing and the endless cycle of political posturing with no one having the courage to act will resume.

We have no moral justification for our conduct in the Middle East when we support Israel which is the most dangerous terrorist state, responsible for creating much of the hatred amongst followers of Islam and perpetrator of outrages every bit as heinous as Assad, Daesh/ISIS, Al Quaeda, Hussein or Gaddafi.

Let’s either do the job properly or let’s get out of the Middle East entirely.

Written by Peter Reynolds

November 29, 2015 at 12:39 pm

Where Was The Outrage When IS (Israeli State) Murdered 3,000 In Gaza?

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idf murderers

We really have twisted priorities in our world.  Nothing can excuse or justify the events in Paris but much more death, brutality and injustice has been inflicted on Palestine by Israel and its conduct drives much of the extremism that now preoccupies us.

We stand idly by while this outlaw state, in breach of 64 UN resolutions, oppresses a whole nation and routinely uses high technology weapons, phosphorous bombs, F16s and tanks against an heroic resistance armed only with pop guns and fireworks.

Israel defies every decent standard of behaviour, every moral and every ethic that we claim to support in our outrage against the evil that took place in Paris.  Why are we not using drones to drop Hellfire missiles on Netanyahu’s head?  Why is the Knesset not regarded as the headquarters of an evil, terrorist ‘so-called’ state when that is exactly what it is?

If we took a moral stand, refused to trade with an apartheid state that engages in child murder and land theft, defended the women and children of Gaza, perhaps it would be more difficult for the monsters of Raqqa to recruit supporters?

Until we become more consistent and fair then we can only expect resentment to grow. We can never defeat the evil of a perverted idea of Islam until we root out the murdering terrorists of Israel.

Written by Peter Reynolds

November 17, 2015 at 6:25 pm

Cameron, The Warmonger. How Did Saving Refugees Turn Into Dropping More Bombs?

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Kobane, Syria, Hometown of Aylan Kurdi, Just One Boy Who Drowned.

Kobane, Syria, Hometown of Aylan Kurdi, Just One Boy Who Drowned.

It’s amazing and frightening.  Two days ago, Cameron wasn’t interested in the plight of the refugees.  He and his crony government didn’t even have the decency to recognise them as refugees, they were migrants.  They weren’t leaving the sort of desolation and destruction seen above, they were ‘economic migrants’ about to “swarm” onto our shores and “swamp” our hospitals, GPs, social services with nasty, dirty foreigners.

Walk On By Dave. You Know That's What You Really Want.

Walk On By Dave. You Know That’s What You Really Want.

Then, with the tragic picture of a little boy dead on a Turkish beach and, unusually, the supine, brainwashed, British public actually getting off their backsides and signing a petition in massive numbers (now over 400,000), he had to do something.  Democracy and public opinion is not a force that can be allowed to gain strength in the UK.  It is the very opposite of what the increasingly corrupt Tory government wants. Its new petitions website is biting back hard.  Its been a major mistake.  More than 200,000 want cannabis legalised, nearly 220,000 want a vote of no confidence in the Health Secretary, over 100,000 want the war criminal Netanyahu arrested when he arrives in London.

This all sounds frightfully like democracy and it has to be nipped in the bud!

So now he’s posturing with weasel words about the millions of refugees but simultaneously ramping up for war on Syria and IS, just as the USA confirms that Russian jets are fighting on behalf of Assad.

I think Cameron is a puppet: an anodyne, oleaginous creep with a shiny face for inane grins into the camera and a Goldilocks wifelet (not too gorgeous, just enough) to portray the mythical British family that we’re all supposed to aspire to.  Who is pulling his strings?A conspiracy of bankers, arms manufacturers, the alcohol industry and press barons.

Fleet Street Fox makes frightening predicitions about war today.  It comes to something when a tabloid like the Daily Mirror presents more challenging, insightful reporting than what used to be called the quality press, now disgraced by the Murdoch and Barclay Brothers comics.  The Times and The Daily Telegraph now represent vested interests, mainly supportive of Tory repression but ready to exercise their own muscle when inconvenient subjects like press regulation or BBC charter renewal come along. Fleet Street clears its throat and Cameron succumbs. Big Booze complains about overregulation, Cameron drops his trousers and says ‘How do you want me?’

I am horrified about the reality of Britain.  The disgusting cover-ups of wrongdoing in high places that we now know has been going on forever.  We have laughed about Nigeria, about tin pot South American regimes but we are every bit as bad, worse in some ways, more secretive, deceptive, corrupt and rotten to the core in police, civil service and throughout the establishment.

It’s a truism that it is the internet that has let all this truth out.  That’s how we know that cannabis is pretty much harmless for 99% of people, while Big Booze is responsible for 1.25 million hospital admissions each years. That’s how we know that the Israeli regime is composed entirely of brutal, sadistic war criminals intent on becoming the new Nazi power and igniting nuclear conflagration in the Middle East. That’s why your internet connection is increasingly censored, monitored and everything possible is being done to turn it against you, to become an instrument of oppression rather than a gateway to truth and knowledge.

I have no answers. What I know is that increasingly often, as I chat with my 80-year old mother, we say to each other how glad we are we won’t be around to see it.

Written by Peter Reynolds

September 5, 2015 at 9:49 am

Why I Have Joined the Liberal Democrats.

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Coalition first 100 days

In my view the only rational choice for the next UK government is another Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition.

The Labour Party is simply a joke.  Miliband is an out-of-touch, Hampstead-socialist buffoon who was part of the team whose reckless borrowing meant that the banking crisis destroyed this country’s economy.  It is ludicrous that we should even consider giving the same people another chance.

Cameron is an oily, two-faced oaf who has transformed the Conservative Party into the Bullingdon Club Party, dominated by out-of-touch posh boys with quasi-fascists like Theresa May, Iain Duncan Smith and Chris Grayling as their attack dogs.

The only redeeming factor about the Tories is a basic competence in managing the economy. Osborne knows what he is doing but left unrestrained he would devastate our society: trashing the benefits system, care for the disabled and access to justice.

We must have the decent, fair, rational and conscientious Liberal Democrats in government with the Tories. Crucially they must hold out for a much tougher coalition agreement which will see the disgusting policies of Duncan Smith and Grayling reversed.  I think it’s too much to hope that we will see the back of Theresa May but definitely, in my area of special interest, the Liberal Democrats will insist on drugs policy reform.  The evidence-free, prejudice-based, self-defeating and cruel drugs policies of the past must be overturned. They have caused too much harm, suffering and promoted the interests of organised crime and the alcohol industry over common sense and the national interest.

So, in February I joined the Liberal Democrats. I was free to do so because that month the CLEAR Executive Committee resolved that we would no longer be a political party. An explanation of that decision is here.

My decision had a lot to do with drugs policy but, as I have explained above, was considered across the wider issues.  I think it reflects the fact that the LibDems are less ideologically-driven, more rational, evidence-based and fair in their policies.  All my life I have been a Tory voter for the crucial values of individual liberty, regulated free markets and opposed to the cloying, repressive ideas of socialism and the overbearing state – but the Tories have lost their way, their moral compass and their integrity.  I will never, ever vote Tory again.

CLEAR has worked closely with the LibDems since I first led a delegation of medicinal cannabis users to meet Norman Baker, then drugs minister, in July 2014.  Just a few weeks later he publicly called for a change in policy on medicinal cannabis, the most significant breakthrough in the UK cannabis campaign for nearly 50 years.  This year we have worked closely with Nick Clegg’s team and the LibDem manifesto incorporated CLEAR’s policy on medicinal cannabis word for word.  I had the privilege of personally briefing him on medicinal cannabis just a few weeks ago.  Julian Huppert, Norman Lamb and Lynne Featherstone, also LibDems, have been of great help to the CLEAR campaign and demonstrated outstanding sincerity, honesty and commitment, uncommon qualities amongst politicians.  Personally, I also greatly admire the courage of LibDem David Ward in standing against Israeli war crimes and in support of Palestine.

On the narrow issue of drugs policy, once again, Labour is a joke.  It doesn’t have one.  With a few honourable exceptions, such as Paul Flynn, David Winnick and Bob Ainsworth, the party is stuck in reefer madness, terrorised by tabloid editors and prefers prejudice and scare stories to science and evidence.  The Tories have more individuals who support reform but the party as a whole is in a corrupt relationship with the alcohol industry and also terrorised by the tabloid press.

As far as the Greens are concerned, yes they have a sensible drugs policy (originally drafted, in fact, by Derek Williams, my colleague on the CLEAR Executive Committee) but they have no chance of any influence in the new government.  Caroline Lucas did a good job on getting the drugs debate in Parliament last year but I cannot support her party’s bizarre behaviour in the illiberal ‘No More Page 3’ censorship and fracking campaigns.  The Green’s attitude to fracking is as evidence-free and based on prejudice as is Labour’s attitude to cannabis.  Also, CLEAR gave the Greens an opportunity to present their drugs policy to our supporters but despite repeated efforts they couldn’t get it together.  By contrast, the LibDems welcomed us enthusiastically and at the highest level.

I am a Eurosceptic LibDem, which is unusual.  In fact, I voted for UKIP in the last European elections and although the party itself is confused on the issue, I have talked with Nigel Farage in person at length on drugs policy and he is progressive, intelligent and pragmatic on the subject.

CISTA, the Cannabis Is Safer Than Alcohol party?  Well, I know a number of the candidates personally and I would recommend voting for them in constituencies where the LibDems stand no chance. Overall though the party is a waste of Paul Birch’s money and I can say that with the experience of CLEAR’s 16 years as a political party.  It’s great that they are bringing some attention to the campaign but it’s a futile strategy and Birch has spurned all efforts at support and assistance from CLEAR.  Had he even returned our calls we would have endorsed and promoted CISTA candidates in some constituencies.

So in conclusion, for drugs policy reform, particularly for access to medicinal cannabis, but also for a fairer society where policy is based on evidence and compassion rather than prejudice and vested interests, vote Liberal Democrat!

No Decent Briton Can Vote For A Man Who Supports Netanyahu, The War Criminal.

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David Cameron visit to Israel and Palestine

Cameron’s support for Netanyahu makes him complicit in genocide, child murder, apartheid, land theft and other war crimes.  Whatever domestic issues we may be concerned with, this is of another magnitude and is an unforgiveable act of treason against mankind.

The best policy for Netanyahu is assassination.  It is a moral and ethical choice to obliterate this monster from the planet without endangering any lives except those of our heroic special forces who must undertake this mission.  If Netanyahu escapes this justice and is dragged in chains to the Hague to face trial, Cameron should be taken with him as an accomplice.

Written by Peter Reynolds

March 19, 2015 at 9:49 am

Posted in Politics

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‘Skunk’ Drives Tabloids And Politicians Mad.

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Tom Chivers, Ian Dunt and Jonathan Liebling expose the dreadful reporting of the latest cannabis harms study from the husband and wife team of Professor Sir Robin Murray and Dr Marta Di Forti.

The British tabloid press has long been engaged in the corruption of our society and successive governments’ ability to deal with drugs policy by its sensationalism, distortion and dishonesty.

In fact the worst offender now is the Daily Telegraph, a tabloid in everything except format. It now eclipses the Mail newspapers for inaccurate, misleading and distorted reporting on all aspects of drugs policy. Its science and medicine writers are either deliberately engaged in deception or utterly incompetent. Virtually every story it publishes on drugs these days has to be retracted but you never hear about it because it’s buried in a tiny, tiny correction.

Here’s what happened to its ridiculous claim recently “cannabis as addictive as heroin”

DT headline 071014

The Mail newspapers can’t resist the stories about the miraculous medicinal benefits of cannabis because they make such good sensationalism. So although they still publish hogwash, like this latest distortion, they’ve actually become more balanced almost by mistake.

Why is the British press so incompetent and/or malevolent on drugs? Is it anything to do with the £800 million pa that the alcohol industry spends on press advertising? I don’t know. Maybe it just likes to appeal to the fast dwindling band of bigots that actually buy newspapers these days.

We are a laughing stock across the world for the idiocy of our press and government, particularly in respect of cannabis. In Canada and Israel, hospitals provide elderly patients with cannabis vapourisers on trollies, so strong is the evidence for its beneficial effects on aging and dementia. Here of course we prefer to let them lie in their own excreta while feeding them with scaremongering nonsense, distortion and exaggeration of scientific studies.

Sugar, peanuts, hay fever remedies, aspirin, paracetamol and traffic fumes cause far more health harms than cannabis.

In Colorado, in 2014, $44 million in cannabis tax revenue was ringfenced for schools and hospitals. Since legalisation, crime and fatal traffic accidents are down 15%, murder is down 50%.

Far too sensible for Britain isn’t it? And it’s the work of our gutter press that prevents such progress here because politicians still give newspapers far too much respect.

The Monstrous, Cruel and Ignorant Health Minister Of Jersey.

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Deputy Anne Pryke

Deputy Anne Pryke

“It would be irresponsible to allow the importation of cannabis into Jersey.  I could not support a proposition to issue a special licence to an individual for the possession of illegal cannabis in its raw form, where neither the quality nor composition of the product, its safety, dosage or levels of individual use could be effectively monitored and I would urge members to vote firmly against this proposition.”

Deputy Anne Pryke, September 2014

Jersey is in an enviable position regarding medicinal cannabis.  As a Crown dependency the island has constitutional rights of self-government and judicial independence. It is within the power of Deputy Pryke, the Minister of Health, to issue a licence for Bedrocan medicinal cannabis to be imported from Holland where it is grown legally for medicinal purposes under the regulation of the Dutch government.

A formal States petition has been delivered and Deputy Montford Tadier (the Jersey equivalent of an MP) has requested that an import licence be issued for his constituent, Evelyn Volante who suffers from ulcerative colitis.  See a video about her use of medicinal cannabis here. You see above the disgraceful, monstrous, cruel and ignorant words which Deputy Pryke has spoken in response.

Now these are strong words.  Too strong for the people at Politics Jersey, where my description of this politician’s conduct met with wide support but then I was kicked out by the admin team who described it as a “personal attack” and an “insult”.

I repeat my description of Deputy Pryke’s conduct as monstrous and cruel. If we cannot call out politicians for actions they take or words they speak in their official capacity then what sort of democracy do they have in Jersey?

To deny anyone access to a medicine that is proven by science to treat a serious medical condition is monstrous and cruel in any and all circumstances.  This is a self-evident truth which renders Deputy Pryke unfit to hold any office in government, particularly that of Minister of Health.

Deputy Pryke’s words are also astonishingly ignorant.  It is clear that she has been negligent in her duty properly to consider the evidence relating to cannabis and ulcerative colitis.

Cannabis works for all forms of inflammatory bowel disease because the bowel contains CB1 and CB2 receptors which when modulated by cannabis turn off inflammation. Thus it provides more than simply palliative relief.  It actually treats the cause of the conditions.  For all intents and purposes it is a cure.

Bedrocan cannabis, as approved and regulated by the Dutch government’s Bureau voor Medicinale Cannabis, is strictly quality controlled and its composition and safety are at least as well proven as any pharmaceutical product.  As for levels of individual use, this is the same as with any medicine and is controlled by the amount prescribed.

1. The best evidence of all is Ms Volante’s own experience.  She already uses cannabis, illegally, and it works better for her than the highly toxic and debilitating pharmaceutical medicines which are offered by her doctor.

2. There is a vast quantity of anecdotal evidence and personal experience from thousands of people around the world using cannabis effectively to treat ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s disease and other forms of inflammatory bowel disease.  Deputy Pryke could spend 15 minutes on Google.

3.  Many peer reviewed studies show positive benefits and few adverse side effects from treating ulcerative colitis with cannabis.  The following are just a small selection

Esposito G et al. Cannabidiol in inflammatory bowel disease: a brief overview. Phytotherapy Research 2012 July; doi:10.1002/ptr.4781
Lahat A et al. Impact of cannabis treatment on the quality of life, weight and clinical disease activity in inflammatory bowel disease patients: a pilot prospective study. Digestion 2012; 85(1): 1-8
Lal S et al. Cannabis use amongst patients with inflammatory bowel disease. European Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology 2011 Oct; 23(10): 891-96
Naftali T et al. Treatment of Crohn’s disease with cannabis: an observational study. Israel Medical Association Journal 2011 Aug; 1(8): 455-58

4. GW Pharmaceuticals is presently conducting phase II clinical trials into cannabis for ulcerative colitis.

5. The Meir Medical Center in Israel is also conducting clinical trials and claims 90% of patients achieve significant clinical benefit with no side effects.



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