Warsi does the right thing

Published: August 7, 2014
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Britain's former senior minister of state at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and minister for faith and communities, Baroness Warsi, is driven away from her home in central London on August 5, 2014, after she resigned over the government's position on the conflict in Gaza. PHOTO: AFP

Britain's former senior minister of state at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and minister for faith and communities, Baroness Warsi, is driven away from her home in central London on August 5, 2014, after she resigned over the government's position on the conflict in Gaza. PHOTO: AFP

Resignations by reason of principle are virtually unheard of in Pakistan politics, but they do happen elsewhere. Baroness Sayeeda Warsi, the Foreign Office minister and a member of the UK government, has resigned because of her disagreement with the British government policy in respect of Israeli actions in Gaza. In her resignation letter of August 5, she accused the British prime minister of undermining Britain’s historic role as an honest broker. Not all would agree with Baroness Warsi on this point. She declared that the actions of Israeli forces were morally indefensible and could likely be the basis for radicalisation (of British Muslims) that may have consequences for the UK in years to come. In that assertion, she is on firm ground, as evidenced in the way in which radicalisation, particularly among young Muslims the world over since the 9/11 attacks has mushroomed.

There are tensions within the British government that is a fractious coalition of the Conservative and Liberal-Democrat parties. Prime Minister David Cameron has refused to condemn the Israeli attacks on civilians in Gaza, and moreover, has banned his ministers from saying that the Israeli bombings were a disproportionate response to any aggression that Hamas may have shown — which probably was the straw that broke the Warsi back and left her little choice but to resign if she was to preserve her credibility in the eyes of British Muslims. And not only Muslims, she is generally respected as being hard working and principled by many of the non-Muslim electorate. Her resignation is going to further aggravate internal tensions and Tory grandees, who have long disliked and resented her, are already briefing against her, accusing her among other things of being a Hamas sympathiser. Baroness Warsi has had a rough ride from the British establishment. Her resignation over the Israeli actions in Gaza may have far-reaching implications for the British government and she remains a potent figure on the UK political stage.

Published in The Express Tribune, August 7th, 2014.

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Reader Comments (7)

  • jun
    Aug 7, 2014 - 1:17AM

    popularity stuntRecommend

  • Humayun
    Aug 7, 2014 - 7:46AM

    Respect for her and her stance

    Recommend

  • Ravish Ali
    Aug 7, 2014 - 9:43AM

    @jun:
    As if no one knew her before. Better learn to appreciate others for having courage to do what most of the leaders in the world can not do

    Recommend

  • Naved
    Aug 7, 2014 - 10:48AM

    Thus proving to everyone else that we muslims cannot be counted on following national interests. Our religious ideologies triumphs everything else. What a shame. She could have taken a much more nuanced stand on it.

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  • unbelievable
    Aug 7, 2014 - 8:50PM

    If you want to influence the process you have to engage with the major players — she got her 15 minutes of fame but her ability to influence has been diminished.

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  • S
    Aug 7, 2014 - 9:30PM

    @Naved:
    Where did religion come from? She used the words “morally indefensible”.

    Recommend

  • amoghavarsha.ii
    Aug 8, 2014 - 1:13PM

    do u need courage to resign and not do any work?
    or to work and convince people?

    to work and convince people of your views, needs first inteligence and courage to speak up,
    resigning is running away from responsibility.

    Recommend

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