It was only a few months ago when the entire British Isles came to a moral divide based on one decision. On one side of the ring, you had right-wing serial killers and on the other stood normal human beings. I am of course referring to the decision of whether to partake in the bombing of Syria on IS targets or not. Weeks and weeks wore on, with MPs equally as divided as the general public on the best course of action. Many viewed our potential participation in bombing Syria as the last straw of humanity, whereas others saw it as, “we better get them before they get us!”
The ‘for’ campaign insisted that the UK’s bombing in Syria would be nothing extraordinary (as we were already dropping missiles in neighbouring Iraq), and that bombing would only target IS strongholds with specially designed missiles. Those ‘against’ were having none of this political rhetoric however, and pledged that the loss of civilian life would be an inevitable result of such actions.
Eventually “team rocket” won out and before the MPs had a chance to leave the Commons chamber, the first RAF jets took off to begin the UK’s consented aerial raid over Syrian skies. Since that day however, we have heard relatively little of this in the mainstream media. Surprising, as the debate basically had the entire country holding its breath for two weeks.
A quick Google search of ‘bombing Syria’ displays relatively little in the form of current updates. The most recent news story was published on the 2nd January 2016, exactly a month after the operation was given the all clear. So why has it suddenly all gone very quiet?
It could perhaps be because nothing is actually happening. Jon Lake, a military aviation expert, has described the UK’s aerial intervention in Syria as a “non-event”, with the last RAF manned strike occurring on the 6th December 2015. One of David Cameron’s main assertions for conducting air strikes in Syria was because the RAF could make a “meaningful difference” to the battle. It is therefore puzzling that they have not contributed more to the issue that morally divided our nation.
As the focus of parliamentary coverage will be firmly fixed on the EU referendum for the near future, it is unlikely that we will hear anything from our participation in the air strikes for a while, confirming how quickly the hot topic can fade in to yesterday’s news.
By Byron Grant