EghtesadOnline: Vice chair of 'Stop the War Coalition' Chris Nineham believes that Saudi adventures in the Middle East serve British interest.
In an exclusive interview with IRNA in London, the British activist said Britain regards Saudi regime as being its interest no matter what its record is, no matter the atrocities it has committed at home and abroad, it perceives further the interest of British establishment. So they support this regime. This is the nature of imperialist foreign policy.
The following is the full text of the interview:
Q. What is your opinion about Saudi Arabia war crimes in the Middle East and the British foreign policy in supporting it?
A. I think it is effectively now official that there have been series of reports that have been delivered to parliament and various committees have catalogued series of disasters conducted by Saudi regime.
Most people already knew about that just from watching the news.
At the same time back in years ago we warned that western interventions and support for dictator regimes can only lead to disaster.
Now it has percolated up to the top of the British establishment who are beginning to recognise the problem, but it is also important to change the foreign policy and that is not happening at the moment.
Q. Why is there such impunity for Saudi Arabia?
A. The whole foreign policy project in the Middle East is driven not just by humanitarian concerns but is driven by calculated economic self-interest from the Western powers.
Our elites regard Saudi regime as being their interest no matter what its record is, no matter the atrocities it has committed at home and abroad, it perceives further the interest of British establishment. So they support this regime.
This is the nature of imperialist foreign policy.
Q. Would it be possible to hold Saudi regime accountable and prosecute them to ICC?
A. I think there is definitely the possibility of accountability. I am not sure about prosecuting in the International Criminal Court but we have a mass movement which is capable of imposing its will on governments.
We are now pushing in the next few month for the stop of arm sales to Saudi Arabia and hopefully it can make an impact.
Q. What is public opinion about what is happening in the Middle East?
A. I think it varies from country to country, but in general there is definitely change in terms of opinion about these things. In Britain, we are now in a situation where the majority of people blame Israel as opposed to Palestine for the conflict there.
The majority of people oppose new interventions. This is definitely a big change. It is something that the elites really don’t like.
Now we are in a situation where there is a major political crisis every time they want to go to war and that’s the product of the campaigns and mass movements and so we will carry on.
Q. So Why did parliamentarians vote to join fights in Syria against ISIS?
A. Because there is a kind of disconnect between parliament and the people and that’s a truth. There is a democratic deficit in the country which shows a political flaw.
The Westminster elites are not representing ordinary people and one of the reasons why we have to keep campaigning is because we need to solve that representation problem and hold our parliamentarians to account. We need to make sure they do what people want rather than what ministry of Defense tells them.