Garnier In Junket to Saudi Arabia:
In February, Mark Garnier went on a fully expenses paid trip to Saudi Arabia costing £7,800 and paid for by the Saudi Government, “to gain a deeper understanding of the strategic links between the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the UK.”
In layman’s terms, the Saudi/UK “strategic links” can only mean it’s about supporting the arms trade or at least the regime there. An arms trade that sells missiles made in Kidderminster, that the Saudis and under UK supervision, use, it is claimed, to kill innocent Yemeni men, women, and children. There’s also the case of the Proxy war going on in Syria of course, where Saudi has funded and armed some very unpalatable rebels like Al-Qaeda (those of Nine-Eleven origin) to fight Iranian and Russian backed Assad. Those same rebels, who credible journalists claim, ran a false flag chemical attack operation, to draw us into a war they are losing. That incident resulted in a contentious UK bombing of Syria, unapproved upfront by Parliament, such is Theresa May’s contempt for democracy, that some say, served the Saudi rebel backed interests. Saudi Arabia would love to see the Iran regime toppled, and Trump’s recent decision to pull out of the Iran deal only escalates tensions in the region. Of course, at the time and rather predictably, Mark Garnier having just been to Saudi Arabia, claimed in The Shuttle, he didn’t have a view on the bombing of Syria. Nevertheless, a few days later, he backed the lame duck PM Theresa May on it, so showing his true colours and probably the value of his Saudi trip, at least to the Saudis.
Oddly, he’s been pretty quiet on this particular trip with his constituents. Why? Has he got something to hide?
Stephen Brown said “As a reminder, following a previous trip to the Middle East to the UAE, paid-for by the UAE Govt, Garnier reckoned there were “huge advantages” to having a “dictator” and having “no planning laws”. The Bewdley Gladmans objectors might have a view about that. In Mark’s world, it seems those he feels are “dog-end voters” are second to his own ambitions, and second to the fact he’s easily persuaded by dictators when on junkets to appalling regimes. That should be of deep concern to all of us. It demonstrates what he thinks of regimes who have terrible human rights records and is prepared to go into bat for them, and at what cost to our own democracy?”
Stephen Brown went on to add “Garnier has some serious questions to answer about why, especially as he’s no longer a Minister, he’s accepting Saudi Govt paid-for trips as a backbench MP ‘to gain a deeper understanding of the strategic links’? His constituents, and I’d agree with them, might rightly think that he needs to spend more time dealing with the problems in his own backyard than swanning off poking his nose into issues he clearly doesn’t understand. You know, the local issues his Government, and supported by his votes, have caused for us in Wyre Forest: Like, low pay, insecure jobs, household debts, fuel poverty, insufficient affordable housing, rising foodbank use, child poverty, loss of free school meals for the poorest children, school funding crisis, our failing NHS, the calamity that is the near bankrupt Tory County Council, the threat to Ludlow Road Centre, and the fact we’ve got the dubious distinction of being the drug addiction death capital of the Midlands.”
Garnier’s Brexit Delusions:
Coincidentally, as well as developing his ‘voice’ for Saudi Arabia, he’s also developed it in Parliament and for a hard Tory Brexit too. What “a road to Damascus” (ironically in Syria) conversion he’s had eh? From campaigning Remainer to “happy clapper Unicorns promised here Brexiteer”. He is a man with no principles save for those that keep him in his seat as an MP. He’s clearly courting UKIP votes to bolster his majority, and with his votes in Parliament for a “hostile environment”, along with supporting the Windrush scandal and subsequent cover up, he’s supporting racist policies. He’s already voted against equal marriage, and so equality and human rights are not much of a Garnier concern.
Stephen Brown commented “After years of silence in Parliament, with written questions being his modus operandi and usually on his single issue focus of banking and finance, he’s majoring on Brexit. He’s popped up in a few recent debates defending the Govt shambles on Brexit, and commenting upon those post Brexit trade and borders debates in the Commons, whilst not really adding much to it. Why?”
“He’s also had a vacuous sunny uplands and unicorns article in the Tory Telegraph newspaper about why he’s now a Brexiteer. This despite a Tory dominated Commons Committee stating the Govt position on Ireland and having no customs union is problematic and will result in an unwanted border. He’s getting in his practice defending the indefensible. A cynic might be forgiven for thinking he’s after a new Ministerial job. I mean, the Tories are happy to reinstate racist councillors in order to regain control of a council, so a mere sexist being reinstated should not worry them too much at all. I’d say Garnier’s on a mission, what with his Brexit conversion and Saudi connection, it seems he thinks he’s in with a shout of a Ministerial rehabilitation.”
Stephen Brown asks “Who is the real Mark Garnier?”
“The one who at least tries to appear rational, sympathetic and understanding in his weekly Shuttle column by facing in all directions at once to maintain his charming facade?”
“Or the one who’s voted for austerity, inflicting debt, low pay, pain and misery on the poorest and most vulnerable; the one who’s voted against equal marriage; the one who’s voted for racist policies and cover ups and demonstrated empathy for totalitarian dictators and their human rights abuses whilst sending his former Secretary out to buy sex toys and using sexist language, then passing it off as a joke?”
“Will The Real Mark Garnier please stand up, please stand up.”
Wyre Forest Labour has a fundamental question for Mark Garnier’s Wyre Forest constituents: “If you have an issue you’d want his help on, say about equality, benefits, the NHS, or even Windrush, would you trust him to help you get justice knowing what you know about his voting record?”
Most might conclude not, and that Wyre Forest really does need an MP “working for ALL Wyre Forest on EVERY issue” as Garnier claims in his online profile. Wyre Forest Labour argues that this person is not, and never will be, Mark Garnier. He’s damaged goods and running out of time.