Mr Cameron is banking on another ‘veto’ moment to salvage credibility – his rejection of the Argentinian ‘Malvinas’ letter will help him play for time, but is not enough to mask the cynicism of his governance
Mr Cameron’s frank and full support of the Falkland Islands is to be commended. Whatever the opinion of Britain’s sovereignty of those distant lands, they remain British territory so long as the people of those islands wish to remain under UK rule.
However, this blog is hardly going to claim the scoop when it suggests that, not unlike the Argentinian president, the beleaguered Mr Cameron will make as much political capital out of this situation as he can muster. It will be proof positive to the PM’s acolytes that their leader exhibits statesmanship and backbone, that their’s is a PM who stands up for British interests. Indeed, there is no doubt that the party’s organisers are probably banking on sustaining this myopic view.
Unfortunately, Mr Cameron’s posturing is not sincere precisely because it is inconsistent. If he was genuinely concerned about British people deciding their destiny, wherever their territory, he should commit to referendums where and when they are demanded. Mr Cameron is only offering the residents of the Falklands a referendum for exactly the same reasons he is not permitting a referendum on the EU question – because he can guarantee the result.
This cynical, nay, duplicitous attitude underscores policy, word and deed for Mr Cameron. He praises, for instance, the armed forces, yet he is inflicting upon them brutal cuts; he preaches self-determination but does not allow it to be practised within the UK’s own borders; he talks tough about the EU, but genuflects to them without hesitation; he talks austerity, when no net spending cuts have been made; he plays at being a conservative, but enacts socialist agendas.
Evidently when it comes to asserting identity, be it nationally, politically or even for the brand of his own party, the only currency Mr Cameron can handle is lip-service and tokenism. He is a ‘neither one thing nor the other’ leader of government that tries to be all things to all people.
© thepanopticonblog, 2012