Category Archives: Articles

The End of Appeasement in Britain?

Article published by the Gatestone Institute, 14 October 2020. © Richard Kemp

‘This is not the end. It is not even the beginning of the end. But it is, perhaps, the end of the beginning.’ Winston Churchill’s words following the British victory over Germany in the Battle of Egypt in November 1942 might also describe recent political developments in Britain’s modern-day culture wars. For many decades, British society has been subjected to an almost continuous assault on our history, our way of life and our national institutions by the hard left.

The centre and right became so demoralised by this highly successful campaign that for years their response was appeasement, the very policy Churchill warned against so frequently when the fascist mirror image of this ideology threatened us in the 1930s. Now there are the glimmering signs of a fightback against the progressive liberal consensus that resulted, engulfing many mainstream politicians, the judiciary, civil service, much of the media, big business and education.

The inspiration for this fightback came when the voice of the no-longer-silent majority, exasperated by the progressive erosion of national sovereignty and the very fabric of democracy by the European Union, finally made itself heard in the Brexit referendum of 2016. The victory was narrow, but it should be remembered that the referendum was dominated by a campaign of fear and disinformation by every mainstream political party, virtually all national and international institutions and much of the media. Even the President of the United States, Barack Obama, came to London threatening to send us to ‘the back of the queue’ on trade if we dared cast off the EU. As planned, this onslaught intimidated huge numbers into voting remain. In reality, therefore, far more than the 51.9% who had the courage to vote leave were in favour of rejecting the plot to turn our country into a mere province of the putative European superstate.

Implementation of the referendum result faltered under Prime Minister Theresa May’s government, which seemed intent on ignoring the democratic will through BRINO — ‘Brexit in name only’. But last year, the peoples’ voice again thundered in her successor Boris Johnson’s landslide general election victory. It saw the collapse of the ‘red wall’ in northern England, with numerous long-held Labour constituencies defecting to the Conservative vote.

Despite the immense damage being inflicted by the Coronavirus pandemic, these developments seem to have begun to restore confidence among the centre and right. In recent days, the government announced plans to appoint conservative figures to two roles: the chairman of the BBC and the head of the broadcasting watchdog Ofcom. Why do these seemingly trivial Continue reading

The EU: Hizballah’s Intersectional Partner

Article published by the Gatestone Institute, 18 September 2020. © Richard Kemp

Intersectionality has become a cynical craze among woke activists determined to promote division and undermine the fabric of Western society. But long before these Johnny-come-lately militants launched their campaigns of disruption, cancelling all who disagree, doing their best to get dissenters fired and tearing down historic statues, other militants were putting their brand of intersectionality into action to kill, maim and destroy the targets of their own hatred.

Sinn Féin’s campaign of violence against the British state and the people of Northern Ireland, fronted by the Provisional IRA, lasted 30 years until their comprehensive infiltration by British intelligence, especially the Royal Ulster Constabulary Special Branch, forced them to lay down their arms under the Good Friday Agreement in 1998.

Sinn Féin-IRA’s intersectionality included close cooperation with a wide range of fellow terrorists, including the Basque separatist movement, ETA. For many years, Sinn Féin-IRA also colluded with terrorist gangs in the Middle East, themselves masters of intersectionality, sometimes crossing the Shia-Sunni divide as they still do today.

Perhaps the most significant of these unholy alliances involved Colonel Muammar Gadaffi’s regime in Libya. Gadaffi helped re-energise IRA terrorism in the mid-1980s by supplying cash and weaponry, including rifles, pistols, machine guns, rocket launchers, surface-to-air missiles, flamethrowers and high explosives. Four massive arms shipments from Libya – totalling more than 100 tons – made it through to the IRA strongholds and a fifth was intercepted by the French navy. These bombs and guns were used to murder large numbers of innocent people in Northern Ireland. Continue reading

A Great Step Forward for World Peace – and Who Seems Determined to Ignore It

Article published by the Gatestone Institute, 3 September 2020. © Richard Kemp

This week, we witnessed a symbol of perhaps the greatest step forward in world peace for decades. The first-ever direct passenger flight from Israel to the United Arab Emirates flew down the length of Saudi Arabia’s airspace. After Egypt in 1979 and Jordan in 1994, the UAE has become the third Arab state to normalise relations with the State of Israel under the new Abraham Accord.

Next month, the 2020 Nobel Peace Prize winner will be announced in Oslo. Will it go to the architects of the Abraham Accord, a momentous achievement in itself, and also a major development in a regional geopolitical realignment that is not only good for peace and prosperity in the Middle East but in the world? We knew what the answer would be to that question even before it arose. (Those who point out the deadline for 2020 nominations has passed need not expect to see it in 2021 either.)

Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, might well have caught the eye of the Nobel selectors, but unfortunately his partners in this enterprise are US President Donald J. Trump and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Both are despised figures for the wokerati in Oslo and the fellow travellers they are desperate to impress. Compared to the perceptions of these leaders among the hard left who dominate all discourse on ‘peace’, their achievements on the world stage are irrelevant.

Their fingerprints on the Abraham Accord ensured it also received a cool reception in much of the US and international media and in the chancelleries of Europe — more closely aligned with the hostile and backward-looking regimes of Iran, Turkey and Qatar than with those who actually strive for peace and progress and human rights in the Middle East; ‘the men in the arena’, to borrow from former US President Theodore Roosevelt.

Yet, the developing relationship between Israel and the UAE is at least as significant as the peace treaty between Israel and Egypt that deservedly led to Nobel Peace Prizes for Menachem Begin and Anwar Sadat. It paves the way for further leaps forward, with potential for similar normalisation between Israel and other countries in the region such as Bahrain, Oman, Sudan, Morocco and even Saudi Arabia. The UAE would not have acted without Saudis’ blessing. Although publicly understated, the opinion in Riyadh is clear. Some months ago, in talks with leaders there as part of a delegation from former Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s Friends of Israel Initiative, together with their Executive Director Continue reading

Appeasement: The European Sickness

Article published by the Gatestone Institute, 24 August 2020. © Richard Kemp

Europe is in the grip of a uniquely virulent and pernicious disease that threatens the wellbeing of its peoples and of the world: not Coronavirus, but appeasement. Anglo-French foreign policy in the 1930s was also dominated by appeasement – of Nazi Germany – a policy that failed to prevent one of the greatest catastrophes that ever engulfed civilisation and that led to the deaths of millions.

Now, Britain and France seek to appease the three powers that most threaten the world today: Iran, China and Russia. As permanent members of the UN Security Council, last week both Britain and France genuflected to their arch-enemies by refusing to support their greatest ally, the United States, in its resolution to extend the UN arms embargo on Iran. The US resolution was of course opposed by China and Russia, both of which intend to sell advanced conventional weapons to Iran as soon as the embargo runs out in October.

Back in the 1930s, the aggressive intentions of Nazi Germany were clear. Although appeasement of Hitler was inexcusable, the main reason was perhaps understandable: a prevailing attitude of ‘peace at any price’ following the unexampled butchery of World War I, then still so fresh in everybody’s minds.

Today, the intentions of Khamenei’s Iran are just as clear, and have been frequently demonstrated in imperial aggression across the Middle East, especially against Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Yemen and Saudi Arabia, as well as in its unwavering threats and military actions against Israel.

Even if European countries were so blinkered as to overlook these distant aggressions, how could they ignore the multitude of terrorist and assassination plots mounted by Iranian proxies on their own soil in recent years? As well as the murder and attempted Continue reading

Britain’s New Spy Laws

Article published in The Daily Express, 24 July 2020. © Richard Kemp

Britain’s guard against Russia, maintained from the end of the Second World War, has increasingly dropped since the fall of the Soviet Union. A naive belief overtook our political leaders — in the the same way as with Communist China — that ever-greater inclusion in the international order would turn this authoritarian regime from opponents to friends of the West. The conditions for this optimistic attitude in the West were systematically created by decades of Soviet influence across all elements of society, from universities to government institutions to industry.

Another factor in permitting the Russian danger to increase was the growing threat from international terrorism in the years since 9/11. Not only did this serve to distract from apparently less immediate foreign challenges, but our police and intelligence services necessarily focused huge amounts of their finite resources on it.

One of Russia’s primary objectives is to divide and weaken NATO as part of their effort to gain power and influence relative to the US. Divisions in the alliance in recent years, resulting from antagonism between Europe and the US, largely as a result of European states’ failure to pay their way, play directly into Russia’s hands. Continue reading

70 Years Since the Korean War Began

Article published by Breitbart, 25 June 2020. © Richard Kemp

Seventy years ago today, on 25 June 1950, the Korean People’s Army crossed the 38th Parallel and advanced into South Korea with infantry, tanks and artillery, and the support of China and Soviet Russia.

Within five days they had hurled the ill-equipped South Korean army back, decimating a 95,000 strong force to 20,000. The UN Security Council called on its members to send forces to the aid of South Korea. The US acted immediately, initially deploying a division from Japan by early July. Throughout the three-year conflict, the US accounted for 90 per cent of the UN force.

British Commonwealth forces were among those that followed them into Korea, with Australian troops from Japan leading the way. The Australian, British, Canadian, New Zealand, and Indian troops made up what became the 1st Commonwealth Division. In all, 90,000 British troops had fought in Korea by the time the war ended in 1953.

With both sides fought to a standstill, the result was stalemate, and remains to this day a frozen war. Often thought of as ‘The Forgotten War’, few, either in Britain or the US know much about it beyond the TV comedy series M*A*S*H.

Yet Korea saw some of the bloodiest fighting in any conflict before or since, with a death toll of 300,000 UN and South Korean troops, up to 735,000 North Korean and Chinese troops, and an estimated 2—3 million civilians from both sides.

By September 1950 UN forces had been thrown back into an enclave of south-east Korea around Pusan, covering just 10 per cent of the country, with the South Korean capital, Seoul, in enemy hands. On 15 September US General Douglas MacArthur, the UN commander, launched an amphibious attack at Inchon. It was one of Continue reading

A British mandate to recognise Israeli sovereignty

Article published by Jewish News Syndicate, 10 June 2020. 

by Richard Kemp and Hugh Kitson

The British government should be supporting the Trump peace process, rather than punishing Israel for exercising a right that was granted to it under international law 100 years ago.

The legal right of the Jewish people to reconstitute their historic homeland was recognised at the San Remo Conference of 1920 and by virtue of the Mandate for Palestine that resulted from it. This was unanimously endorsed by all 51 nations that were in the League of Nations, which then constituted the entire international community.

International lawyer Cynthia D. Wallace writes: ‘The Mandate system had been set up under Article 22 of the Covenant of the newly formed League of Nations that had arisen out of the Paris peace process to deal with such post-war emerging territories. At San Remo, the Mandate for Palestine was entrusted to Great Britain as a “sacred trust of civilization,” and the language of the Balfour Declaration was enshrined in both the San Remo Resolution and the League Mandate, which stand on their own as valid international legal instruments with the full force of treaty law.’

Wallace is by no means the only international lawyer who recognises that the right of the Jewish people to reconstitute their national home in their historic homeland was enshrined in international law at San Remo. At the heart of the historic Jewish homeland was the Old City of Jerusalem and the territory today known as ‘the West Bank’.

Territorially the legal right of the Arabs to self-determination was accorded to them by the Mandates for Syria and Lebanon (under Continue reading

Annexation vs sovereignty: Words matter

Article published by Jewish News Syndicate, 9 June 2020. 

by Richard Kemp and Arsen Ostrovsky

It is factually incorrect to assert that Israel intends to ‘annex’ territory to which it has legitimate claim and that never has been part of a ‘state of Palestine’.

Words matter. They drive narratives. They influence policy. And they shape people’s perceptions.

The current debate over whether Israel’s proposed actions in Judea and Samaria (the West Bank)—in accordance with US President Donald Trump’s ‘peace to prosperity’ plan—amount to ‘annexation’ or the ‘application of sovereignty’ is a prime example.

Much of the international community, NGO world and foreign press, even some in the Jewish community, have been referring to this aspect of the plan as ‘annexation’.

This is partly a function of naiveté and a lack of understanding about what the term ‘annexation’ actually connotes. But there are those who know the distinction—and its implications—very well, and are using it to create a dangerous perception: that Israel has no entitlement to Judea and Samaria, and therefore would be committing some illegal act under international law.

In essence, annexation means one state imposing legal authority over the territory of another state acquired by force or aggression, normally during war.

The Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court defines ‘annexation by the use of force of the territory of another State of part thereof’ as ‘constituting the grave Crime of Aggression’.

Russia’s annexation of Crimea and Turkey’s invasion of Cyprus are prime examples of such cases. Continue reading

National Guard Deployment Is a Delicate Mission

Article published in Newsweek, 1 June 2020. 

by Richard Kemp, Benjamin Anthony and Cade Spivey

Following the brutal killing of George Floyd, demonstrations and peaceful protests have taken place throughout the United States in a legitimate expression of deep grievances and suffering felt by members of black Americans and those who stand in solidarity with their cause.

Separate to those, gangs of violent, thuggish, rioting looters and agitators are now engaged in a rash of dangerous, criminal behavior spreading throughout America.

As a result, the security role of the National Guard, originally confined during the COVID-19 era to ‘support for warehouse and commodity management and distribution,’ ‘conducting logistics missions in support of the state response at warehouse locations’ and ‘advising and assisting, logistics, transportation, traffic control’ is now very likely to become vital, central and extremely complex—deployed as they will be to not only disperse those gangs, but also to protect the business owners and homeowners threatened by these violent mobs.

As veterans of the Israel Defense Forces, the United States Navy and the British Army, respectively, we are well aware of the complexities regarding the implementation of the use of force for the sake of crowd control, across a range of missions; from dispersal to anti-terror measures.

We understand the complexities of a military deploying and operating among and alongside a host nation’s citizenry against threats emanating from non-citizens. While conducting those operations, we found that the greatest asset to hand was a population of willing supporters—people who saw us not as Continue reading

HEALTHY BODY AND MIND VITAL IN THESE TIMES

Article published in The Daily Mirror, 1 June 2020. © Richard Kemp

The Royal Army Physical Training Corps motto is mens sana in corpore sano, which means, ‘a healthy mind in a healthy body’.

It sums up the two most important attributes of fighting troops — morale and physical fitness.

The job of our soldiers, sailors and airmen is to attack the enemy.

That means danger, uncertainty and physical and mental stress. Some 80 years ago, forced back to Dunkirk, British troops faced one of their greatest trials.

The vital need for physical strength combined with mental determination in just getting to the beaches was described by the CO of 2nd Essex Regiment.

He said: ‘When walking with an officer I noticed blood coming through the dust on his boots. In response to a word of encouragement, his reply was, “I’ll make it all right sir.” He did.’

In Helmand Province, Afghanistan, 67 years later these qualities were no less decisive for the young infantrymen of the Essex Regiment’s successors, 1st Royal Anglians.

They sweated mile after mile across tough terrain and searing heat, carrying 90lbs battle loads while facing danger from every direction.

The challenges of Covid-19 are nothing like war.

But these are also testing times and those whose morale has been sustained by physical fitness will be the ones coping best.

That’s why daily exercise is one of the few reasons to break lockdown.

Military training and discipline are never forgotten and like Prince Charles, who is a veteran of the Royal Navy, many will have been sustained by their experience.