UK Liberal Democrat Leader Nick Clegg, increasingly a darling of American liberals, has come under heavy fire today from three leading former defence, intelligence and counter-terror chiefs. The attack in The Times of London on Clegg’s left-wing national security policies comes just two days before the British General Election on Thursday, and highlights the glaring weaknesses of his foreign and defence policies.
Here’s an excerpt:
We are concerned that the Liberal Democrats make no mention of Nato in their manifesto. Almost every reference to the United States is accompanied by a call for a much more distant relationship…
The Liberal Democrats appear shy of putting forward serious new proposals for combating terrorism, the No 1 one threat to the safety and wellbeing of the United Kingdom.
The Liberal Democrats are seemingly willing to expose our intelligence and security services to relentless inquiry and investigation. The agencies must be held accountable. But how this accountability is achieved is critical. The Liberal Democrats’ approach lacks balance. Their way of doing things would further jeopardise the close intelligence and security co-operation of our allies, which is vital to preventing terrorist attacks.
The Liberal Democrats’ unilateral abandonment of control orders, with nothing to replace them, would leave the United Kingdom exposed to some of the most dangerous individuals in the country, who could then be released onto our streets.
As I’ve written previously, Nick Clegg’s foreign and security policy would be disastrous for Britain on the world stage, and if enacted would inevitably lead to British decline:
Clegg’s international agenda bears no relation to the harsh realities of an increasingly dangerous world. It gives rise to a nightmarish scenario of a great nation with a proud and distinguished history brought to its knees on the world stage through a combination of pacifism, eurofederalism and anti-Americanism. In reality, British leadership is needed more than ever, and the British people must be prepared to confront the dangers of Islamist terrorism and the dictators that back them.
– Nile Gardiner is the Director of the Margaret Thatcher Center for Freedom at The Heritage Foundation.