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The Michael Cherney Foundation
Exploits Ministry

Acceptance Speech for the Henry "Scoop" Jackson Award
for values and vision in politics

Moses Room, House of Lords, 30th January 2007

Baroness Cox (My Noble Friend), Michael Cherney, Ladies & Gentlemen, you can have little idea how much pleasure it gives a maverick political outsider like me to receive this great honour. Not only is it deeply flattering to be credited with values and vision in politics, but I have always been an admirer of Israel, and so most of the things I hold dear come together in our Judaeo-Christian heritage.

In fact my mother did her best to claim that we had Jewish blood, because her father's surname was Moysey. His family came over from France in the 17th Century and settled in Devon, and we like to think that Moysey was a Devonian distortion of 'Moss?'. Be that as it may, I have long regarded the Jewish people as quite simply the most cultured and civilized race on this earth.

Israel is of course also a democracy, the only genuine democracy in its troubled region, but that does not cut much ice with our politically correct friends, who demonise the United States of America and Israel, and who despise our own history of Empire and all the good things we have done over the last few centuries.

Talking of political correctitude, I think your concentration on the sins of gender and religious apartheid in the war against Islamism is quite brilliant. I do not see how they are going to get round that one.

I have two thoughts, two areas to put before you, which might repay greater research and publicity. Mr. Marcus spoke about the abuse of the school syllabus in Palestine, and of course that is wholly pernicious. But something similar has been going on for many years, since the 1950s in fact, in this country and in the United States, and probably elsewhere. I came across it when I sat on the body which validated all the teacher training courses in this country, from 1983-1992. When you come to think of it, one can get very worried about what goes on in primary schools, but primary schools are not really the heart of the problem. Rather, I suggest it is teacher training which is the soil in which the roots of education feed. Then you have primary schools, then secondary, and then universities. And the frightening thing I want to tell you is that the mission statement of the council which validated all the teacher training courses in this country was to "permeate the whole curriculum with issues of gender, race and class". And they did it, and that is where I suggest so much of our political correctness, and indeed moral relativism, comes from. Its an area which we should probably examine in greater depth.

Another area concerns Islam. Here I must confess that I am not in the least an Islamic scholar, and indeed most of what little I know I have learnt from Caroline Cox and John Marks' brilliant book "The 'West', Islam and Islamism: Is ideological Islam compatible with liberal democracy?" which they have brought along to distribute today, and from other similar writings. So you all know much more about it than me, but I still want humbly to suggest that perhaps we should look at more closely, and publicise more widely, the Islamic principle of 'abrogation'. I understand that this principle is pretty well universally accepted across the Islamic world, and it means that where there is conflict in the Koran, it is the later verses which hold sway over the earlier verses. And the Koran gets steadily more violent as it proceeds, as it reflects Mohammed's sayings after he left Mecca in 622 and moved to Medina, becoming more and more bellicose. So if abrogation is accepted, the Koran is not a peaceful book at all. In fact, it is pretty much an incitement to religious hatred and violence, which is a crime in most civilized countries.

Islam has one other great disadvantage, it seems to me. It is both a religion and a political system, and the penalty for rejecting it and its law, as set out in the Koran and Islamic traditions, is death. Not a very creative arrangement.

Yet we are told "most Moslems are peace-loving people". Well, they may be, but if they are it seems to me that perhaps our main priority should be to get them to debate the meaning of their religion as set out in the Koran, the hadith and the sunna, and abrogation in particular, with their violent co-religionists; with the Islamists. And we all know how difficult that is to do, but I suppose we just have to go on trying, because we are unlikely to be able to bomb the Islamists out of existence, given their growing hold over so much of the world.

You have very kindly mentioned my work behind the Iron Curtain in the former Soviet Union. I must say I thought that that was the great struggle of my generation, of our life times, and we won it. But we didn't see that an enemy just as menacing would replace the Soviet evil. It is as though the dark side of human nature, at its deep collective level, has moved across from Soviet Communism and taken root in Islamism. And in some ways Islamism is more frightening. After all, nobody actually believed in Soviet Communism after about 1955; it was held together by fear. But these Islamists, who are also determined to dominate the planet, very definitely do believe in what they are doing, to the extent of blowing themselves up and thousands of innocent people with them. So we have to get at them from within, and break them down with the kind of reason you are bringing to bear, and I congratulate you.

I have been asked to say something about another major problem of which I have some experience, and to which you may not have given the attention it deserves. I know it is controversial, but I refer to the European Union, which has I think been less than helpful in the aid it has been giving to the Palestinians. It's a safe bet that the EU will not be an ally of yours in your campaign, so I want to make sure you know the kind of animal you are dealing with.

Its important to understand that the project of European Union was born of a single big idea; that idea emerged after the two world wars, and was that the nation states had been responsible for the carnage of those wars, and for the long history of war in Europe. The nation states, with their unreliable democracies, therefore had to be emasculated and diluted into a new form of supranational government, which would be run by a Commission of wise technocrats. So, the project of European integration had as its prime inspiration the pursuit of peace, and it was an honourable enough idea at the time. The trouble is that it has gone wrong. But the Eurocrats still claim that the EU has brought peace to Europe since 1945, and that the peace which the EU brings to Europe justifies all its other disadvantages. If you challenge this claim, you immediately become 'anti-European', a dangerous nationalist, a little-Englander, a xenophobe or worse. But it doesn't stack up. NATO kept the peace in Europe after 1945, and no European country would have gone to war with another in the absence of the EU. Also, if you stand back and take a calm look at it, the EU is actually a well tried model for discord, not peace. It is a top-down amalgamation of different peoples, put together without their informed consent, and such arrangements usually end in conflict. You've only got to look at Northern Ireland, Yugoslavia, the Transcaucusus, Kashmir, and much of Africa to see that. The EU is also institutionally corrupt, and innately undemocratic. And these are further ingredients for trouble.
Before we look at just how undemocratic the EU is, I take it we can all agree that the fundamental principle of democracy is the hard-won right of the people to elect and dismiss those who make their laws. That's the heart of the matter; that the people can sack their lawmakers. Yet the German government has recently calculated that 80% of all new German legislation since 1998 has been made in Brussels, and the figure will apply to the other Member States, including us.

How does the EU law-making system work? First, the unelected and corrupt bureaucracy - the Commission - has the monopoly to propose new laws. The process takes place in secret. Second, the Commission's legislative proposals are then negotiated, also in secret, by the shadowy committee of permanent representatives, or COREPER; bureaucrats from the nation states. Decisions are taken in the Council of Ministers from the member states, again by secret vote, where the UK now has about 8% of those votes. The Treaties ordain that the resultant laws must be enacted by national parliaments, often on pain of unlimited fines in the Luxembourg Court. The Commission then executes all EU legislation.
The European Parliament cannot initiate legislation. MEPs can block proposals, but they hardly ever do so because the more European legislation there is, the merrier for the project as a whole (including their bloated salaries, fraudulent travel expenses, etc.).
Broadly speaking, under the Treaty of Nice, which is where we stand now legally in the absence of the proposed EU Constitution, the following areas of our national life are already subject to majority voting in the Council: all of our commerce and industry, our social and labour policy, our agriculture, fish, foreign aid and foreign trade. In addition, our Parliament must also rubberstamp any decisions agreed in Brussels by the Government, by the executive, in all of our foreign and defence policy, and in all of our justice and home affairs. So that's how bad it is at the moment. But of course it all goes back to that original big idea - that our national democracies must be emasculated and diluted into a new form of supranational government, run by a Commission of wise technocrats.
There are at least three other features of this innately undemocratic system which I should bring to your attention. The first is that there is no appeal against the judgements of the Luxembourg Court of so-called Justice. This is not a court of law as you would understand that expression, but rather it is the engine of the treaties. It is encouraged by the treaties to find in favour of the "ever-closer union of the peoples of Europe" ordained in the treaties, and it interprets them with admirable imagination in order to do so. Second, once an area of national life has been ceded to control from Brussels, it cannot be returned to national Parliaments. This is known in Euro-speak as the acquis communautaire - or powers acquired by the community. In plain English, this translates as 'the ratchet', which can only grind in one direction, towards the ever closer union of the peoples of Europe. Third, no changes can be made to the treaties unless they are unanimously agreed by all the Member States in the Council of Ministers. So renegotiation of the treaties to reclaim our democracy is not realistic - the only way out is the door.
Perhaps I should just mention the EU Constitution, which is supposed to be undergoing 'a period of reflection', after the French and Dutch people voted it down. Its worst features were that it gave the EU its own legal personality, superior to that of the member states, and passed most of the remaining areas of our national life under the control of Brussels. But we would be wrong to think that the Constitution has gone away.
Several very worrying initiatives are being taken forward by the Eurocrats, based on dishonest interpretation of the existing treaties, as though the French and Dutch people had not spoken. One of these is the Charter of Fundamental Rights, with its new agency in Vienna. This is the initiative which the Europe Minister, Keith Vaz, assured us would have no more force than the Beano, and which the Prime Minister assured us would not be justiciable in the Luxembourg Court. Yet, the Court is already taking note of the Charter in its judgements, and the Commission has ordained that all new legislation must adhere to it. It is no exaggeration to say that the Charter aims to deprive us of most of our remaining legal independence, by imposing the EU social model on our economic, employment, welfare, education, health, environment and cultural policies. It's a sort of vast EU Human Rights law.

Other initiatives include the EU taking forward its diplomatic corps and pursuing its military ambitions. Our defence procurement must now favour EU suppliers over those of our US allies, at much greater cost. The EU's space programme proceeds, which includes the Galileo satellite system, in which China has a 20% stake, and which has been set up in direct competition with the US Global Positioning System. Under Justice and Home Affairs a European Criminal Justice system is emerging. And so it goes on. All this and more is going ahead supposedly under the existing Treaties. At some stage in the next 18 months or so there will be a perfunctory Intergovernmental Conference, just to tie up the lose ends - the new voting weights in the Council, for example, and the end of the rotating presidency. Nothing to trouble the ignorant people with, of course; it would be absurd to hold referendums on such detailed and technical proposals.

So the project of European Union cannot stop now; it can only move forward. Soon we will be faced with the new megastate, which will be hostile to the United States and to Israel. Already this hostility is embodied in the Eurabia Treaties, and inspired by France's deep psychotic need to bite the hand that freed her in two World Wards.

There are, I suppose, three great problems facing us today; global warming, Islamism and the European Union. I am not sure how much responsibility we bear for global warming, and I'm not sure we can do much about it quickly enough anyway. I wanted to make sure you understand the nature of the beast in Brussels, and to wish you every success as you ride into battle against by far the greatest threat facing our civilisation today, militant Islam.

Thank you.
Malcolm Pearson
January 2007

 

 

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