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Tory MPs openly ridicule Corbyn at Commons Defence questions

Conservatives openly ridiculed and mocked Jeremy Corbyn in wake of his comments on defence during a recent appearance on The Marr Show.

During oral questioning of the Secretary of State for Defence in the House of Commons today, Tory MP’s could not hide their eagerness to discuss Daesh (ISIS) and Trident nuclear subs, such was their haste to put the boot into Corbyn and his nonsensical defence views.

The SNP tried to remain relevant a few times during the session by asking farcical questions, nothing of substance, merely trying to catch out the defence ministers, but were swiftly rebuked by buoyant Tories.

Corbyn’s comments:

“Mr Corbyn used his appearance on the Sunday-morning politics programme to lay out other planks of his foreign and defence policy – calling for the UK to come to a “reasonable accommodation” with Argentina over the Falkland Islands and suggesting that Trident submarines could be built but not armed with nuclear warheads.”

“Mr Corbyn said he would not go as far as to open “dialogue” with the so-called “Islamic State”, which controls large parts of Iraq and Syria, but that not cutting off contact completely could have advantages. “Dialogue is perhaps the wrong word to use – I think there has to be some understanding of where their strong points are, where their weak points are, where we can challenge their ideology. I believe the neighbouring governments in the region are in touch,” he told the programme.”

The Independent 17/01/2016

The following clip shows some of the exchange, focussing on 2 questions posed by Conservative MP’s.

Question 4: What assessment has he made of progress in the international campaign against Daesh?

Stephen Hammond MP (Wimbledon, Conservative)

Question 5: What assessment has he made of the effect on UK security and the economy of building four Successor ballistic missile submarines for the nuclear deterrent; and if he will make a statement.

Michael Fabricant MP (Lichfield, Conservative)

Some highlights from the exchange:

“I was very surprised, like my honourable friend, to hear the suggestion that somehow one could negotiate with Daesh or indeed that the Daesh had some, and I quote, ‘strong points’.  The ‘strong points’ I think the house will recall are beheading its opponents, burning prisoners alive, throwing gays off buildings, enslaving young women, murdering innocent British tourists in Tunisia and slaughtering young people on a night out in Paris.  I fail to see any particular attraction.”

Michael Fallon MP, Secretary of State for Defence

“A defence policy of nuclear submarines with no nuclear weapons, that thinks Daesh have ‘strong points’ and wants to end the Falkland Islander’s right to self-determination, may be Labour’s defence policy but it will never be Britain’s defence policy.”

Michael Fallon MP, Secretary of State for Defence

“The nuclear deterrent is the cornerstone of the UK’s defence and security policy. Maintaining ‘continuous at sea’ deterrence requires 4 ballistic nuclear submarines and the UK’s defence nuclear enterprise is gearing up to deliver the Successor replacement to the Vanguard-class submarines. These will not only keep Britain safe but also support over 30,000 jobs across the UK…and they make a significant contribution to the UK economy.”

Philip Dunne MP, Minister of State (Ministry of Defence, Procurement)

“30,000 jobs. I thank my honourable friend for his answer. Now, notwithstanding proposals for nuclear missile submarines without nuclear missiles, does he not accept there are something like 17,000 nuclear warheads around the world, possibly threatening us some of them. So, what is my honourable friend’s assessment of the likely risk to national security should the 4 missile submarines not proceed?”

Michael Fabricant MP (Lichfield, Conservative)

“We have seen, I think he was referring to comments over the past 24 hours, the most extraordinary contortion emerging from the champagne-socialist salons of Islington. The idea that spending tens of billions of pounds to build, but not arm, a strategic deterrent betrays the new kind of politics from the Labour leadership, a lurch back to the discredited unilateralism of the 1970’s, a breath-taking lack of understanding of how to keep this country safe and a consequent threat both to national security and the tens of thousands of jobs across the UK.”

Philip Dunne MP, Minister of State (Ministry of Defence, Procurement)

“In what circumstances does he intend to use nuclear deterrents?”

Douglas Chapman MP (Dunfermline and West Fife, Scottish National Party)

“I think this gets to the heart of the confusion that lies at the centre of Scottish Nationalist policy. The deterrent has been in use every single day and night for the last 53 years.”

Philip Dunne MP, Minister of State (Ministry of Defence, Procurement)

References and further reading

  • Jeremy Corbyn says there could be benefits to opening diplomatic back-channels with Isis.Jon Stone, The Independent
  • Corbyn: UK could keep Trident submarines but without warheads. BBC News
  • A guide to trident and the debate about its replacement. BBC Politics
  • The Trident Commission: An independent, cross-party inquiry to examine UK nuclear weapons policy. Concluding Report, July 2014

About UK Rants

"UK Rants" is a blogger who supports both the Conservative party and leaving the European Union. He writes on current affairs to inform his readers with as much information as he can, to allow them to make most informed decision possible when voting. He blogs in his personal capacity at

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