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Instant Opinion: Brexit is ‘necessary crisis’

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Your guide to the best columns and commentary on Wednesday 9 October

Analysis Gabriel Power
Wednesday, October 9, 2019 - 10:34am

The Week’s daily round-up highlights the five best opinion pieces from across the British and international media, with excerpts from each.

1. David Edgerton in The Guardian

on a very British wake up call

Brexit is a necessary crisis – it reveals Britain’s true place in the world

“But the real story is something much bigger. What is interesting is not so much the connections between capital and the Tory party but their increasing disconnection. Today much of the capital in Britain is not British and not linked to the Conservative party – where for most of the 20th century things looked very different. Once, great capitalists with national, imperial and global interests sat in the Commons and the Lords as Liberals or Conservatives. Between the wars, the Conservatives emerged as the one party of capital, led by great British manufacturers such as Stanley Baldwin and Neville Chamberlain. The Commons and the Lords were soon fuller than ever of Tory businessmen, from the owner of Meccano toys to that of Lyons Corner Houses.”

2. Roger Boyes in The Times

on bubbling unrest in the Middle East

Another Arab Spring threatens to break out

“Across the region regimes are on the hunt for fall guys. Turkey, Qatar and the Muslim Brotherhood are the usual suspects. But the problems are overwhelmingly homemade and government solutions overwhelmingly brutal, just like (or worse than) the bad old days. The countries that today celebrate themselves for beating back Isis may through their misgovernance be simultaneously creating the circumstances for an Isis 2.0. Instead of building the authority of robust state institutions, too many politicians have been focused on building palaces. The real challenge facing these regimes is how to create a political order deriving authority from a sense of genuine citizenship. Until leaders make that leap they will preside over ever weaker, permanently unstable states that stumble into conflict.”

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3. Allison Pearson in The Telegraph

on defections and principles

Heidi Allen was always a fake Tory - it’s no surprise she’s joined the Lib Dem banana republic

“How dare she appropriate the term One Nation Conservative for her sly, self-serving purposes. The nation voted for a Conservative manifesto which, quite specifically, said it would deliver the result of the referendum. Attempting to brand Boris Johnson and other Tories who are fighting to keep that promise as ‘far Right’ is despicable, quite frankly. A clear majority of Conservatives voted to leave the EU; we are not the extremists. And most Tories who voted Remain now fully accept that the party must honour its commitment. Heidi Allen and her disloyal ilk were always fake Tories – let’s call them the All Mod Cons. It suited them to pretend to be Conservatives and they didn’t care how many people’s trust they betrayed so long as it advanced their career.”

4. Jill Filipovic in CNN

on a make-or-break moment for the American right

Even Republicans know that Trump can’t do the job of president

“Which brings us to the sudden stiffening of Republican spines. It’s great that the GOP hawks are criticizing Trump’s foreign policy when it puts US interests and our allies’ lives at risk (although their own taste for forever war, and the military industrial complex dollars it drives, is an enduring and repugnant motive). But it’s telling that Republicans are willing to criticize the President on an issue that hasn’t and likely won’t draw a torrent of disparaging and damaging tweets from the President, and hence likely won’t cost them with voters - very few Americans vote primarily on foreign policy, and the question of whether we abandon the Kurds won’t drive many people to or from the ballot box.”

5. Matthias von Hein in Deutsche Welle

on the “betrayal” of a key ally

The Kurds lose out again

“Human rights organizations decried the systematic destruction of livelihoods, in which Kurdish houses were plundered and, ultimately, Syrian Arabs were settled in the area. Now Erdogan is openly plotting a similar course. He claims he wants to create space for more than three million Syrian refugees who are no longer welcome in Turkey. In the end, that means Erdogan is planning ethnic cleansing to enable the relocation of refugees along the Turkish-Syrian border.”

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