Monthly Archives: April 2018

Marry In Haste, Repent At Leisure

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Softly does it and this is what we are good at.  Just as well that we have not attacked, as only now  does Russia’s battleplan against Britain become apparent.  Its soldiers have surrounded Douma in Syria and put it into lockdown.

Russia has now criticized the British directly of making up the chemical weapons’ attack in Douma. Russian Ambassadors have been trumpeting their innocence, even after we saw such sad images of poisoned children. Unfortunately for them, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has reports from similar agencies of up to 500 people affected by a chemical weapons’ attack in Douma and 60 lives taken.

The International Inspectorate for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons has sent Inspectors to Douma. They will start work tomorrow 14 April, exactly a week after the chemical attack.  Speculation says that Messrs Putin and Assad have had plenty of time to clean up the chemicals and their residue.

So the Russian soldiers are to be protected by Mr Putin, except it is rather that the West does not want to bomb the Inspectors. Luckily we have not attacked. We would have been condemned worldwide if something had happened to them. I hope that they have bodyguards.

It is not bombs that are needed, but escorts for foreign aid to be distributed in Syria. The British are good at protection, yet we are treading on eggshells around the US and the Russians.  Why? How did we allow this to happen?

I would not like to have the US in my corner. Its President is volatile, unreliable and rapidly stopping his entry into war. Let the British go to war and the US can have its usual stance on the sidelines.  The British will be the fall-guy and maybe after its destruction, Russia and America will come to the diplomatic table.

Russian pride has been deeply bruised, after no-one believed them when they were accused of using chemical nerve agents on British soil.  The media says that there is clearly no other plausible explanation.

If the Russians are so innocent, why have they not tried to help children and the old with antidotes to the chemical attack?

Who and where are we supposed to bomb?  It is ridiculous. Protect and build relationships; that is what we are good at on the world stage. To keep that ability, we must steer clear of Messrs. Putin and Trump.

LucyLou

 

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Britain Will Be The Fall-Guy In Mediterranean War

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It appears that Mrs May can go to war without a mandate if she is doing it on behalf of the Queen.  It is risky for her to involve herself in politics, yet it is the British who have most to lose in these shenanigans.

Whoever thought it a good idea to pontificate on our Navy, makes it sound like a playground spat. If we initiate war, we will be crushed. We are piggy-in-the-middle here, with nothing to gain. If Mr Trump has played the great legacy, great country card, we should proceed with extreme caution.

I expect that Mr Trump will say that his aircraft carrier cannot manoeuvre between Cyprus and Syria as it would get stuck between two land masses. He will shrug and say that the British started it and he cannot protect them for fear of risking American lives. (He must be drowning Mrs May in charm.)

The strong response is to avoid war. It is not good to go to war with a lunatic and a French President, seeking what, exactly?

Which area will we hit with our weapons?  Do we have reliable Intelligence?

Who will be most hurt? The old, very young, very poor and children.  These are the people who were affected by a chemical attack, purported to come from Mr Assad of Syria.  Do we have proof? These are not people whom we have sworn to protect.  It is not our war! If we make it so, Russia will be delighted. As an aside, what happened to a man like President Assad to make him destroy his own country?

Has anyone noticed a pattern here? First North Korea and America swapped strong words. Then a threat was perceived to the South Korean peninsula where there is an American base. At that point, Mr Kim Jong Un, President of North Korea stepped up to statesmanship. He met Mr Moon Jae In, President of  South Korea and he made the first steps towards a US State Visit to North Korea.   The two Koreans have decided to have a Summit between them on 27 April, which is wonderful news.

So, the troublemakers looked for another target.  Britain and Russia threw out each other’s diplomats and so did our European allies over a chemical attack on English soil.

You have to think about consequences. Britain should not bomb a country, that is already in smithereens. We will be bound to hit innocent people. It would be better to send in drones with infra-red radar and discus results, before going in.

Mrs May’s reputation will sink massively. A consequence of going into someone else’s war may generate a General Election, as most of us are more tired of war than we are of Brexit, just. That the British have been in every war since the Second World War, does not mean we continue. I expected a woman to have more sense and analyse the problems and consequences.  It is a strong leader who stands back to look at the bigger picture. Leaping into war is for fall-guys.

So the Cabinet has, this evening, agreed to go to war. No surprise; they are mostly men, but what of the consequences? What do you do after levelling the parts of Syria, Messrs. Putin and Assad cannot reach?  Or worse. You cannot bomb a chemical weapons dump, for fear of releasing numerous toxic substances into the air. The whole Mediterranean area will be crippled, according to which way the wind blows.  We are fall-guys for this little Entente Cordiale between us, the French and the US. What does the French public say?

You cannot deter Russia from using chemical weapons. It has not worked here, has it? We do not need to respond to a threat, made worse by America.  Sending our young armed forces to war anywhere ; these ideas have to be well thought out. We never know which way Trump will jump.

Our international reputation will be in tatters. We are seemingly entering a club with a warmonger and the French. Why are we ignoring the UN and NATO? They will be with us after Brexit, but Mr Trump does not like them.  Please stop; standing up to him is a given. Do not give in. We should start thinking of ourselves. We are tiny in the world.

Our SAS are the finest in the world. Why waste their power in a place we cannot control and will do no good?

Of course, the Generals are ready and delighted to go to war.  Even they need a reason.  You do not play with the psyches of such brave men. I object to this war. What do you think?

LucyLou

 

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Fill In Our Potholes With Recycled Household Plastic

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This blog is also about social comment.

The snow that visited us this year, has ravaged our roads. In a thirty-mile radius locally, cracks in the road have turned into miniature craters. We did not even have much snow, but the temperature was below freezing for a week.

There needs to be two things:

1) An electronic wand, hand-held, that can quickly map a miniature crater. Maybe someone can adapt the new hearing tests, which electronically map the ear.

2) There is a British start-up company, which is using plastic waste as part of materials to make roads. Cumbria is pioneering it. I know nothing of the physical and chemical makeup of roads, yet I wonder if plastic waste adds some elasticity? A pothole was filled in three times locally last summer and at the side of the road appeared a disc of tarmac and a hole. The bus went over it and out it popped.

3) Can it be used to fill in our potholes?

Macrebur is the brainchild of Toby McCartney and the key point here is that he has seen a version of it working in India. They use plastics to fill potholes and then melt it into place. His company converts waste household plastics to pellets, used in conjunction with bitumen, to make stronger roads.

It just needs someone with a bit of nous and money to help Mr McCartney fill our potholes.

Currently, the greatest fear is that motorists report genuine and opportunistic falls into potholes and the road budget for the year is soon exhausted. The country cannot afford these motorists to claim.

We need the pothole-filling programme to start now. Here’s the link:

https://www.curbed.com/2017/4/26/15428382/road-potholes-repair-plastic-recycled-macrebur

Please comment on the blog if you work for a County Council or a Borough Council. It just needs you to start a trend.

Thanks for reading

LucyLou

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Pride Comes Before A Fall

Senior UK Civil Servants and politicians must eat humble pie.  We are the tiniest of countries, compared with the US and post-Brexit, we will be of no account, unless we stick by our democracy and our principles.

UK law says that you cannot go to war unless you have parliamentary approval.  It does actually beggar belief that Parliament is on holiday, whilst the US tries to start World War III.  Mr Trump is not a fan of the UN and appears to think he is above international law and beyond them.  They are simply not as fast as Twitter.

Who knows, if by next week, he will want to use our forces in Cyprus (peaceful for 44 years, since the Turks invaded Cyprus), to launch US weapons of mass destruction?  Then his hands will not be soiled by war.

The delay in asking Parliament to vote for military action may save us.  At least, it will give us some time whilst we recall Parliament. Mr Trump has cancelled a state visit to South America.  Come back UK politicians, whatever hue, before Mrs May bows down to Trump and allows US planes to refuel on Cyprus.

Has anyone asked for Cyprians’ thoughts on being used to incite war?  If chemical weapons are being used on the children in Syria, then a reprisal to Cyprus would be made with a shrug of the shoulders. British citizens should leave immediately.

That the US sent home 60 Russian diplomats is perhaps in proportion to the size of country. We cannot be trumped by the US in Syria.  It is so much better to wait for the UN, whose peacekeepers work globally. It is a peculiar triumvirate here: the US, France and Britain against the world. We are signed-up members of the UN and NATO.  What does France achieve out of this? We all know that Mr Trump thinks he is leader of the world; maybe a misunderstanding, he should be a world leader.

It is also unhelpful for a former UK Prime Minister to advocate war when he made such a hash of it last time. No weapons of mass destruction, (the reason for our entry to war), were found in the desert and we were left with loss of such brave soldiers.  They must be given the respect of going to war, if the UN agrees and not on a Twitter whim.

So, to the Civil Servants: it is up to you to persuade your departments’ politicians to wait. Who is behind the chemical attack? I do not often agree with Jeremy Corbyn, yet here he is right about waiting for an investigation into the chemical weapons’ attack.  Then we can perhaps save some of the children.  Going blindly into war helps no-one and last time under Tony Blair, it did not work.

It is weird, under a Conservative government, to even consider going to war without the democratic decision of Parliament.  To a believer in democracy, it is worrying.

As a note off the subject, the US wants us to change our trading principles so that they can sell us chickens washed in chlorine. Give over; we’ve seen the scary smiles.

Lucy Lou

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Involve Communities In London’s Policing

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The UK London Metropolitan Police announced last night what was obvious  to everyone else, that the direct result of fewer policemen on the beat has led to more deaths. The only surprise is that knife crime spiked by only 15% last year. This may also be a direct result of switching off lights after midnight to save power. Criminals are at home in darkness.

London has a crisis, although Chief of the Met, Cressida Dick, does not think so. Please stop being discreet. If our children are being killed, it is a crisis.  News of 300 police officers on the streets this weekend is a good show of force. We all know that is not sustainable.

The announcement of 120 extra police officers on the problem fills me with no confidence, unless we do a variation on this:

Take  the 120 police officers and split them into 10 teams, each with a chain of command. Target the worst affected areas, although any grieving parent will want their areas covered too.

Put at least six people on the beat in an area and make sure that women are also patrolling the streets, to provide confidence and wellbeing to the community.

Top of the chain officers should be seen in the communities to listen to public opinion. Unfortunately, this invariably leads to one grievance superseding all others, for which, the police already know they will be blamed. Still, they should be there to take the flak. When it is impossible to report a crime, except online or on the phone, where we must persuade a bored police officer, we need to see the visible side of policing on the street.

On TV, we also heard from a young man who lives in London, a budding, brilliant MP in my view. He talked about him and his friends patrolling the streets at night to keep everyone safe. Well done, him. Please have a senior police officer talk to him and act on his ideas. However, it is the job of the police force, to keep London safe.

If you just put 120 policemen and women in an office, they will fail. The need is for information and collaboration with communities. Please do not bleat about vigilantes. Why not transform them into Special Constables and see a rise in pride in those young men and consequently in their communities?

There is apparently a high rate of unemployment amongst young males in London. Why not set up a military-run course to give young men pride in themselves? If they are busy doing something worthwhile, that gives them graded certificates, you will be building a competition between young men, instead of rival gangs. Male bonding is so important to young men, who perhaps are unaware of their role in society. My son’s school taught that boys became men at 15, following the hunter-gatherers of ancient times. This is when male bonding needs to flourish. There are Youth Centres in London. Maybe this is where funding is required. Talk to them and make a plan to encourage young people to stay out of gangs. Maybe take  a short trip to Colombia, where advertisements about coffee showed that young men in jobs did not join gangs.

If these procedures or similar are followed, the gangs will be forced underground. Fine; block their exits with policemen. For the moment, let every policeman who sits in an office, re-engage with people on the streets. This is our capital city; we want people from overseas to settle here, work hard and be members of our communities.

Stop, search, seize should be done by plainclothes, detective and uniformed officers. It is the only way to reduce crime.  Longer-term, you cannot allow arms sales online. Check the local gun shop weekly to check that they are selling to over 18’s with a licence and that the police are aware of these people. Previous convictions means no weapons. Make it harder; you will never stop evil.  This is an out-of-control situation that needs to be stamped upon.

So sorry for this crisis, London, yet every parent in the country is with you as you wait for action for every young person.

LucyLou

 

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