We must confront Putin’s rogue state


If the UK was slow to act in the past, there can no longer be any excuses now.

Telegraph View. 22 July

The Intelligence and Security Committee’s report into Russian activity in the UK did not contain the smoking gun that some had been eagerly anticipating. Indeed, given its contents, it is bemusing that the Government apparently went to such lengths to delay the ISC publication.

The work of eight months and redacted in parts, the report contains alarming information about the malicious activities of the Russian state, the role of wealthy expatriates in London, and the deficiencies of the UK authorities’ response. But it does not tell us much about Vladimir Putin’s regime or its malevolent attempts to destabilise the West that was not already widely known.

One of its main conclusions is that the UK was too slow to wake up to the threat posed by Putin and his henchmen. Describing Russia’s aims as “fundamentally nihilistic”, and the UK as being one of Moscow’s top intelligence targets, just behind the United States and Nato, a series of recommendations are proffered to protect better the British economy, and our democracy, from nefarious Russian activities.

The Government should consider these carefully. If the UK was slow to act in the past, there can no longer be any excuses now. The willingness of ministers to denounce the Russian state last week for its efforts to manipulate the 2019 general election, as well as its espionage campaign against Oxford vaccine researchers, is reassuring in that regard.

The attempt to drag the legitimacy of the EU referendum result into the debate, however, is bizarre and unacceptable. Speaking at the press conference, Stewart Hosie, an SNP member of the committee, alleged that British governments had avoided looking for evidence that Russia had interfered. Whatever the intent of his remarks, the effect was to fuel conspiracy theories that the Brexit vote was somehow won unfairly, for which there is zero evidence.

In any case, such pointless discussions are a distraction from the matter in hand. As if any more confirmation were needed, it is now beyond obvious that Russia is a rogue state that must be confronted robustly. Instead of doing Putin’s work for him by questioning the integrity of our democratic processes, it would be better if we turned our sights on how, in concert with our allies, we can more effectively address the danger to the free world that he represents.

9 comments

  • onlyfactsplease

    “One of its main conclusions is that the UK was too slow to wake up to the threat posed by Putin and his henchmen”
    Has Britain awakened now?
    Well, we’ll see. But, I’m not holding my breath.

    Liked by 4 people

  • Nah! No more so than America. The reader comments at the bottom of the editorial are depressing. The same crap I saw back in 2014. Putinoid scum can be seen everywhere. In America, the alt-right support putler. In Britain it’s mainly the hard left, but the Telegraph is a right wing paper. My guess would be that the putler groveling comes from ukip members. Their party loves the tiny poisoner.
    The main thrust of the comments is ‘Putin is a great man, Boris is weak’ etc etc.
    Here are a couple :

    John Steed
    22 Jul 2020 9:55AM
    Oh for God’s sake, shut up about Russia. All states practice espionage and manipulate what they can for reasons of their own foreign policy. Saudi Arabia is up to all sorts. We make a religion of trying to put into power all over this country people who actively hate this country, and exert amazing influence over it, and that issue, in the name of ‘diversity’ will keep getting worse and have worse outcomes than anything Russia tries to do. We are, for example, so busily importing terrorists and terrorist sympathisers, and on that basis, I might welcome Russia taking us over and teaching us how a state does actually protect itself.

    If we had a proper approach to supervising our own affairs, and encouraged patriotism and self-interest amongst the British, we wouldn’t be at risk from Russia’s alleged ‘influence’. And what does it amount to? Do they stand in voting booths voting? Do they count our ballot papers? Or do they fiddle with information on the internet, because they know people are increasingly too stupid to think about issues independently and go by what things pop up on Facebook?
    Find a serious issue, please.’

    Furlough Is lovely
    22 Jul 2020 10:50AM
    Putin is a real strong leader, our weak Buffon should take a leaf out of his book……’
    And so on ad nauseum.

    Liked by 3 people

    • “Instead of doing Putin’s work for him by questioning the integrity of our democratic processes, it would be better if we turned our sights on how, in concert with our allies, we can more effectively address the danger to the free world that he represents.”

      Good, finally someone besides me said it…

      Liked by 2 people

      • Here is what Boris said about putler back in 2015:
        ‘“Russian-backed forces are illegally occupying parts of Ukraine. Putin’s proxy army was almost certainly guilty of killing the passengers on the Malaysia Airlines jet that came down in eastern Ukraine.

        “He has questions to answer about the death of Alexander Litvinenko, pitilessly poisoned in a London restaurant.

        “As for his reign in Moscow, he is allegedly the linchpin of a vast post-Soviet gangster kleptocracy, and is personally said to be the richest man on the planet.

        “Journalists who oppose him get shot. His rivals find themselves locked up. Despite looking a bit like Dobby the House Elf, he is a ruthless and manipulative tyrant.”

        No other senior western politician has had the integrity to go that far in terms of telling the truth about putler.

        Liked by 2 people

        • “Almost certainly “….. That old nutmeg!!!!! Why offer proof when you have “Almost certainly” It’s more convincing than any hard evidence.

          Like

  • “Whatever the intent of his remarks, the effect was to fuel conspiracy theories that the Brexit vote was somehow won unfairly, for which there is zero evidence.”

    Very hard to get evidence if you don’t investigate in the first place.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I recently resumed commenting in the DT after a gap of 5 years, only to find comments yet again swamped with kremtrolls. I just got accused by one of them of being in the 77th Brigade! I had to look them up and it turns out that they are the British Army’s old psy-ops outfit; disbanded years ago but revived in 2015.

      Liked by 2 people

  • Russian soldiers from Dagestan filmed his tank unit entering Krasnodon on 2 sept. 2014.

    Liked by 2 people

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